You’d think SEO was a 4-letter word because of the way some people think about it. It’s not. Trust me. I used to think SEO was like a martian that I couldn’t understand, and it sure as hell didn’t ‘come in peace’.
Then someone explained SEO in a way to me that made sense. How could it not? Search Engine Optimisation – there, easy. It’s all about using words in a way to make it easier for the search engines to find you. It’s like making sure you have a well-lit house number on the street, so people can find you at night. Come on, I bet some of you have driven around unable to find the house you’re looking for at night, only to end up finding one that has a decent number and then counting from there!
The reality is you don’t really need to know the deepest darkest secrets of the latest Google algorithm – some people do. They make it their business to, and good on them for making a business out of SEO and sometimes we need those people to help us. But day to day, all we need to do is make sure we consistently use words that are related to our business, that people are going to use to try and find what they are looking for (hopefully us).
There are some great tools and guides online for SEO including the Google Support pages….ha ha. Just Google SEO tips and you will find a truckload. I’m not here today to teach you all about SEO, I just want to share how I use SEO and how it can help you create your blog calendar.
Let’s start at the beginning shall we. You’re a photographer in Surry Hills who specialises in taking photos of people with their dogs. Cool job (if you like dogs and can take photos, so that rules me out).
What would some of the words be that people would use to find you? Pet photographer, dog photo, photographer sydney you get the idea. So what we do is head on over to the Google Keyword Planner (just google it) to get some more info. You can see what people are searching on and use that to start planning your blog calendar. Why? Because we know that the better your blog content is, and the better the SEO for you blog is, the more likely it is that someone will find you doing a Google search. The reality is, if everyone knew who we were, it would be easy, but they don’t. Most people do not know to type in Perfect Pooch Photos in Google!!! mmm Maybe should have checked if that was a real business before starting this post.
Anyway, back to my photographer. So they can see that people are searching for:
best pet photographer
pet photographer sydney
funny pet photo
cute pet photos
pet christmas photos
Beware, you can spend hours using this tool and drilling down and down into searches. Concentrate on what you really want to be known for.
Now I’m not going to go into search numbers, and keyword competition – it is relevant, but it’s a whole other lesson. For the purpose of this exercise we are just going to see how we can use SEO to create your blog calendar.
OK, so now we have a few phrases that we know people are looking for online. People you would like as your clients, so how do we use that?
funny holiday snaps with pets
funny pet photo
How to take the perfect funny pet photo
See? Easy. Honestly it is once you have the hang of it. I use dates, important events, post idea, keywords, title and images – sometimes I add a relevant song to the mix. It might be different for your business. If you’re a chef for example you may add a relevant recipe to that weeks blog post….pavlova for Australia Day etc.
I have my calendar for the whole year, based on phrases I would like people to find me for. That’s the Educational side of my blogging. This year, I’m also adding more of the Entertainment and Empowerment to the mix, and that is a little less structured – but I will still be using SEO to help with this.
Am I a master in SEO? Hell no! I actually bought an amazing SEO report from Shae Baxter (I’m not an affiliate by the way – I just think it rocks).
It’s honestly, not hard to do, so either jump onto the Google Keyword Tool or grab an SEO report – just do something. It’s a big wide web out there, and we need to be talking with relevance and we need to use the words people are using to find things…that’s right, you can’t just be typing in your esoteric mumbo jumbo that will never be found. Take the ego out of it, and give people what they want.
It’s funny – having explained all that, you might be thinking ‘what the hell does SEO have to do with what Sam does’? Well, it is relevant. I promise. You see many of my clients get stuck on blogging (procrastination) because they think SEO is so hard. Coaching with me makes them see how simple it can be. Coaching with me helps them create their yearly plan (of which blogging is one part)……so yes, it is relevant to my business.
Let’s get honest here. Selling yourself in business can be hard, and selling yourself in the dating world is…well, just as hard. That’s where great Business Copywriting comes in.
You see these days lots of people head online for business and dating (or even sex if I can be so blunt). That’s all good, you whack up a business page or dating profile and cross your fingers that someone will start beating down your door. It doesn’t happen.
Then reality hits. You get rejected before you’ve even had a chance to be yourself in person. It can be heart breaking.
The truth is though, if the client (or potential match) doesn’t send you a Kiss or a Flirt oops, back to business – a meeting request, it wasn’t meant to be. They are probably not your perfect client, or partner.
Yet we take is so freakin’ personally. Yes, I’ve been there done that. Had the little pity party when I know a potential client has read my words online and gone – next. Then I’ve had the other pity party where you know someone has looked at your online profile, you go ‘mmm I like that’ then nada.
We need to get over ourselves in both scenarios. It’s a big wide world and our ideal client (or partner) is out there. I promise.
In June 2011 there were 2,045,335 trading small businesses in Australia – I’m pretty sure there are some ideal clients in there somewhere. As for partners, well I’m sure there are stats available for that….but doing that kind of research might divert my attention.
Back to how to sell yourself (or have great Business Copywriting skills)…..
Here are my Top 5 Tips for Selling Yourself In Business (and dating):-
1/ Be authentic. The clients you had 30+ years ago are not that relevant (and neither is that high school formal photo).
2/ Use colourful conversational language. I’m not saying drop the F bomb every second word. I mean don’t be bland – even accountants can be colourful (I should know).
3/ Talk about your ideal client (or partner) with honesty and love. If they are ideal to you, your toes should tingle as you write about them (and theirs as they read it).
4/ Pump up the benefits of working with (or dating) you. We all have ego. We all want to know WIIFM (what’s in it for me).
5/ Entice them into doing something, anything to continue the conversation. Sign up for your amazing newsletter, a competition, a coffee (a kiss on RSVP) – whatever. If they are reading your words, you want something to happen.
I’ll stress in all of this that you do not want every Tom, Diana and Harry asking for an introductory session or a cocktail. That’s not the answer to solving the issues of your business profits or your love life!!!
What you want is the people who have really felts something as they read your fabulous copywriting to be inspired to act. When that happens, that when the magic starts.