Beating the SEO Plateau, Part 2: Audience
Augmenting your Audience
In our last blog, we talked about how content is key to getting over the dreaded SEO Plateau. By personalizing it and distributing it in different ways, you will be able to reach a broader audience. It’s imperative to grow your audience continuously when it comes to beating that Plateau, which is why Part 2 is all about expanding your audience.
Broaden your keywords.
Once you have desired results on the most competitive keywords in your industry, you can’t just sit back and relax. You should constantly be looking for new keywords to bring into your SEO strategy. Try going after some less competitive keywords; you may be surprised at how much traffic there is outside of the top 100. Also, bring more long-tail keywords into the mix. Long-tail keywords are phrases that usually have anywhere from three to five words. It might seem like a stretch, but the traffic that gets pulled in from long-tail keywords is always very high quality. People who search using longer phrases are generally more informed and may already be in the decision-making phase of the buying process.
Find a new target market.
In marketing-speak, someone might tell you that you should find a new “vertical.” It means that if you want to broaden your audience, the answer may be to find a new one. Segway is a good example of a company that found itself a new vertical market. When they marketed themselves generically for home use, they failed miserably. One day, they realized that police departments were utilizing their vehicles. So, they switched gears and marketed directly to the police department niche – and it was very successful. In fact, tour companies could be considered another vertical market for Segway.
Do you do any vertical marketing? Maybe instead of finding a new niche, you just need to find your first one. What do you do especially well? What customer base do you resonate with? For example, if you have several clients that are teachers, ask yourself – or even them – why they come to you. Maybe your staplers are perfect for stacks of graded papers, or maybe they are safe for younger children. Whoever it may be – you could easily find your vertical market by stepping back and taking a look at your current customer base.
Move up the buying cycle.
Generally speaking, every buyer goes through a purchasing cycle:
- Awareness of needs
- Evaluation of choices
- Issue resolution
Needs may change over time, but if they do, consumers simply enter into the cycle again. An excellent way to increase your audience is to move up the cycle, targeting customers who are in the earlier stages instead of just those ready to make a decision. Targeting is simple: provide content geared towards the clients in that phase. Since it takes multiple interactions to generate a customer – typically seven touches – moving up the cycle will give you a better chance of establishing a relationship with the client well before they are ready to buy. This can also help you build brand loyalty.
Now that we’ve discussed magnifying our audience, the final step to beating the SEO Plateau is coming up next: Analytics.
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