We run a modern digital marketing agency with an emphasis on SEO services, and having completed Chartered Institute of Marketing exams, we are familiar with both traditional marketing and digital marketing techniques.
Many of our customers have still not made the leap from traditional marketing to digital, and those that do are often relying on techniques that are well past their use by date. So, today’s blog post is aimed at traditional marketing managers, and will provide some insights into modern SEO techniques that get great results.
Not so many years ago we could still get away with operating separate traditional and digital marketing teams, but today it is more important than ever that there is a unified effort. When we set up business five years ago, many clients would totally outsource their SEO, placing it in the hands of our skilled SEO consultants. This is no longer the case – we now work closely with other departments to maintain an effective working synergy between old school marketing and cutting edge SEO.
Why Is SEO Important?
SEO is important simply because millions of people search Google every minute to find information, products and services. Traditional marketing utilised channels such as newspaper ads, editorials, radio adverts and commercial television.
As the digital age has progressed, people have moved away from all these mediums – we read Internet based news sites, listen to Spotify and stream television without adverts using Netflix, Amazon and NowTV. While traditional marketing is still important, the media on which it is displayed are becoming less important in our day-to-day lives.
SEO Has Changed
For anybody looking to SEO for the first time, it is important to understand that it has changed massively. It is no longer enough to simply add commonly searched keywords to a website and buy as many links as you can afford – these methods have been stopped by a series of Google search updates over the last five years.
The New SEO
SEO today can essentially be split into two broad categories: onsite SEO and inbound marketing. Onsite SEO concerns all aspects of your website – how it is built, site architecture, navigation, meta data and crawlability (which are all part of technical SEO) and content. Inbound marketing is essentially every method for driving more visitors to your website.
While SEO may seem a million miles from traditional marketing, both systems require good quality data. This is of course one of the biggest advantages that SEO has over traditional marketing – we know infinitely more about our website visitors than we can know about a group of people who read a particular newspaper, or listen to a radio station.
We can gather data from sources such as Google Analytics, Search Console, SEMRush and Majestic. This information is then fed back into search campaigns to ensure that both the campaign and the website are optimised to provide the best returns on investment.
Links are Still Important
While the nature of links has changed a bit in the last 5 years (yes, Google’s Penguin is almost 5 years old!), links are still a vital part of any SEO campaign.
Today, links are all about building relationships within the industry and creating fantastic content that other people naturally link to. Google is very strict on the purchasing of links, so whereas traditional marketing managers can simply pay for their business to appear on the front page of newspapers or during prime-time advert break, SEO managers need to take a far more strategic approach to winning the top spots. And this is where SEO meets traditional marketing.
Traditional Marketing Brings Links
Paradoxically, traditional marketing methods are often bringing in more links than SEO professionals, although, the best SEO consultants are now using methods previously used by journalists and PR professionals to generate a buzz around a product, which tends to win some links.
For many traditional marketing departments, the only restraint on developing an effective SEO campaign is time – they simply do not have the time needed to bolt SEO onto traditional marketing. While sometimes the two do mix perfectly, with advertising campaigns resulting in thousands of links, often the two never meet.
To get your SEO campaign off to a flying start, it is still therefore important to hire the services of a skilled SEO consultant who is happy to work closely with the traditional marketing team.
Traditional marketing and SEO still differ enough to ensure that the teams are kept separate, but it is possible that in the years to come, the two disciplines will merge to become one.