Last week I spoke on the subject of Content Marketing vs. Content Strategy at the San Diego Interactive Marketing Meetup. With access to fast and cheep means of publishing content, many promotional marketers begin and end with content marketing, and never really get to the strategy. My presentation covered an approach to a content strategy, one the is centered on the customer/reader first, then cascades into the development of deliverables, goals, assets, and then finally the content creation.
Thanks to all of you who attended! It was great to see you and to get all the wonderful feedback, which in turn has encouraged me to do more speaking. So thank you twice.
And thanks also to both Max and Monique of Thunder SEO for hosting the event.
Below is a copy of the deck for those who attended. Looking forward to see you all again soon!
Thursday concluded the final day of the Search Engine Strategies conference in New York City. On tap were the usual topics; architecture, enterprise seo, search+social, how to get out of Panda and Penguin jail, among others. While the sessions themselves are indispensable for newcomers to the field, I find myself at search conferences like these for a different reason – validating my own thoughts on the current and future direction of search.
Occasionally, there will be a session or two that aim to answer these questions head on. More often than not however, what I need to get at isn’t so straight forward. You need to read between the lines, you need not only ask a lot of questions, but the right ones. During his presentation, I asked Internet Marketing Ninjas CEO and Founder Jim Boykin what he felt SEOs would need to be doing differently 3-5 years from now. At the heart of his response, Jim proclaimed that “SEOs will need to become real marketers”, signaling that the practice has up to now largely been isolated from other marketing efforts.
Given my conversations with panelist, industry veterans, agencies, in-house folk, and vendors, here are some of the most salient big picture thoughts about organic search that received strong validation:
- Search is now less about engineering results in a bubble and more about evolving within a larger fabric of content discovery
- Old SEO = a specific Role that executed architecture + engineered links + pedestrian content based on an understanding of how search engines work
- New SEO = a Skill Set of architecture and search engine knowledge leveraged by Inbound Marketers who are who are brand, content, and social experts and who use their knowledge of search in an integrated strategy
- Many good SEOs, and some agencies, are inexperienced in the larger responsibilities outlined above
- Many organizations are struggling with how best to structure the roles and responsibilities that drive their discovery based marketing strategy
- The principal forces behind these changes are:
- social’s increasing reach and influence upon search
- Google’s algorithmic aggressiveness upon status quo SEO
- and the eventual rise of Google Author Rank
I think run of the mill SEO can and will continue to be offered as a stand-alone service for the near future. I also think that SEO as a role will continue to exist, particularly for those individuals desire to remain increasingly specialized or who are working at a more junior level. But it’s become clear that while SEO is not dying, what will make it effective in the near future are activities outside of what is considered traditional SEO.