It’s useful to remind ourselves that the act of publishing is a methodology that has been developed over thousands of years, and has used the most efficient technology of the day in which to deliver the message.

From stone tablets, to papyrus, to vellum, to paper, to computer screen to mobile phone to…

We see that whilst technology constantly changes over time, it’s still the message that is the primary objective of publishing, the act of communication goes from one to many, from many to many. Communication that influences, persuades, angers, motivates… etc.

But what is this to an SEO?

The objective of an SEO is to efficiently get as many people as possible from a search engine to a web page. This is done by ranking that web page higher in the search engine rankings that other web pages.

A good SEO who has mastery of the technology is able to increase the audience of the published message.

Whilst a focus on the technical aspects of this process serves an SEO well, a thorough understanding of the methodology of the art of publishing can take a professional SEO to the next level.

Indeed, we can look at those who are SEO thought leaders and observe that they have a very good understanding of the art of publishing and have attained mastery in the subject.

But it is not about being a thought leader and delivering conference presentations, blog posts, and video demonstration regarding SEO.

It is the understanding that the end result of all these processes and methodologies is all about people receiving a message, and is not about robots crawling the web, or algorithmic changes, or even latent semantic indexing. It’s all about that one person getting the message and for the message to perform its task.

SEO has nothing to do about link building, or does it?

The definition of an SEO has always been blurred around the edges.

It is a new process based on new technology that is constantly evolving, and whilst individuals burn through bytes to expound their own interpretation, there is something that an SEO cannot do without.

Links!

You may argue that an SEO is not about link building, but for the purpose of this argument I have defined an SEO as to efficiently get as many people as possible from a search engine to web page. This is done by ranking that web page higher in the search engine rankings that other web pages.

You cannot do this without links. Links are essential to the SEO, it has to be factored into the process, I don’t know of any SEO who does not concern themselves with links. I don’t know of any SEO who has not deliberately built links for this purpose.

But here is where it gets tricky. You need something to link to, this will be in the form of web content, be it a blog post, infographic, video… etc.

Content is therefore essential, you can’t have links without something to link to, and the mindset of an SEO is not necessarily the mindset of a content creator.

The SEO is usually knee deep in spreadsheets analysing keywords, backlinks, ratios of 'no-follow' to 'do-follow', tags, disavowing links… etc., rather than something more conducive to the publishing process. 

This is where we need to switch to the publishing mindset. In a large agency they will have people whose task it is to be content creators, specialists who can excel in that particular task. Smaller operations can outsource this task to a specialist, but the danger then comes with quality control and project management, while smaller operations and one person set ups will do it all themselves.

It is possible for one person to have mastery in both SEO and publishing, and those who are able to switch between these skills have an edge over those who cannot.

Development of the Publishing Mindset is the most practical way for an SEO to scale their effectiveness

A publishing mindset focuses on the people it wants to attract to its websites. It does this by creating content that has a specific purpose to do achieve the following:

  • Attention
  • Attraction
  • Delivery
  • Response

Attention

Content must get attention else it will die.

For a message or web page to get no attention means it may as well not exist.  People pay attention to what is important to them. This is mostly not conscious though but is actually controlled by the sub-conscious and primal brain.

When we understand that the sub-conscious can perform 11m cycles, and the sub-conscious can perform 40, we clearly see where the cognition is occurring.

Clearly, our decision making process and what gets our attention is not conscious. The primal brain meanwhile is dealing with the basics of survival, sex, money, death… etc. It keeps us alive and controls our adrenal gland. It excites us with chemicals. No need for a cup of Joe when a Sabre Tooth Tiger has your scent.

The fact that some people sometimes make irrational choices in the content they consume, makes it difficult for someone with a completely logical process to work out what people want in terms of content.

Attraction

Content not only needs to get our attention but it needs to draw us towards it. The headline or the short piece of text posted on social media is the main component of what draws us towards a particular piece of content.

It must act in a magnetic fashion, pulling us toward the content and make it irresistible to our brains, using techniques such as curiosity, greed, cognitive dissonance… etc.

It does this by promising fulfilment. The headline is not the full meal, it is the whiff of a meal, and its intention is to make the mouth water, to induce anticipation. It is not a detailed description of what is contained within the body copy.

This is because of what is happening beneath our conscious thinking. Attraction mostly takes place in our sub-conscious thinking. You have a deadline looming and you are not sure you can make it, and for some reason you end up watching a YouTube video about cats making organic donuts whilst dancing the Merengue.

This is not rational, it is not what you intended, and yet time and time again you as a reader will find that attraction to content goes against your conscious thinking. 

What attracts us is not simply the headline, the headline is an important part, but there are other factors at work such as:

  • Who is the creator of the content?
  • What brand is associated with it?
  • Has the content been produced by a member of our tribe? 
  • Will reading this content make us wealthy?
  • Does this content help me achieve my goals?
  • Has the content been produced by an acknowledged thought leader within the niche?

We are members of tribes who have allegiance to various groups of people. If the head of that tribe puts their name to a piece of content, or it comes from a tribe you are desperate to be a part of, then it will play a part in being attracted.

We associate with people who share our values and prejudices, content which comes from these types of people will have a stronger attraction.

Leadership can be a powerful thing. When previous success in a niche has been acknowledged, the thought leader in that space does not have to work has hard to gain attraction.

Delivery

Mastery of the art of delivery or production is the mechanical part of the process, and comes down to such fundamentals as discerning which social media platform to promote on. 

It is essential to build relationships with people who can help boost your particular message on various social media platforms. Building your own tribe which supports you and viewing it as a valued asset is crucial to a successful publishing strategy. Thus, knowing the difference between Twitter Vs Facebook becomes hugely important, and can mean the difference between success and failure.

But it also comes down to how the content is formatted, what content management system you use, is it set up correctly, are images spaced in a consistent way… etc.?

The mechanics are part of the process just as much as the type of content.

Each publishing platform is different and it’s the little things that could end up making or breaking a well promoted piece of content.

It’s important to note at this point that consistency is also an important part, as a lot of people will be attracted to the content simply because of the content that has preceded it, or that there is a brand attraction, which could be an individual or a corporate brand. Habit is something which plays a large part in this, which we can discuss further in another article.

Response

Getting the desired response from the reader is the point of the whole exercise. 

If you are selling a publication, eBook, course… etc. the response may not be as important to you, as you already have the cash in your pocket.

Even then you should still be focused on getting a reaction to your content which satisfies your particular business model.

However, most will be publishing information and communication that is free and so the reaction or response to it becomes the reason the content exists in the first place.

Reactions can be:

  • Sign up to an email list
  • Buy a product or service
  • Build on the emotional attachment to a brand
  • Drop a link (remember those)
  • Initiate a social signal
  • Bookmark the web page
  • Increase recognition of a person or brand
  • Initiate a social media follow

It is crucial you set the specific objective for the content before the content is even imagined, as it is this that will guide the direction of the content.

In the same way the headline should also be thought of before the content is created as this enables the content to be built around a highly effective headline, rather than trying to fit the headline to the content.

A pre-defined headline will also help to guide the spirit of the content to where it should be.

Type of audience

A publisher should know their audience. They must specifically know what content is going to attract them, and have their desires fulfilled by reading that content.

An SEO is already on the way to knowing the audience in a niche, as this is a part of the SEO process when perfoming keyword research. This gives a valuable insight into the words that the niche is using to search for specific information.

However this only gives a partial insight into the audience, its motivation and desires. We must craft our content to the hungry market and feed them juicy morsels which they cannot resist, and we can only do this if we know exactly what makes their mouths water.

How to research the motivations within a niche

Keyword research, if you are an SEO I assume you already have a grip on this.

Audience research:

  • Forums
  • “I hate….”
  • Offline magazines
  • Authority websites
  • Thought leaders

Forums

Forums have existed as long as I have used the web, they are often forgotten in the trendy world of social media and content marketing, but they are still very popular and are fantastic sources of data.

Hangout at forums, analyse the repeated gripes, notice what people complain about. These problems will be the most powerful and pressing issues that people will be seeking solutions for.

I hate

Search for “I hate (keyword), “(keyword) is rubbish”, (keyword) is lame… etc. Think of many different types of phrases that are written as an emotional response to keywords in the niche.

These will mostly be negative and will give you are very good idea of what really gets under the skin of people.

Offline magazines

It is still very useful to stand in front of a news stand and digest the headlines displayed on the front cover of a glossy paper magazine.

Headlines writers, particularly for women’s magazines, have a specific task to do, which they need to do using the least amount of words possible.

We often forget, or ignore the offline market, but there is still clever stuff happening in offline publications. 

Authority websites

We can quickly ascertain, simply by doing a visual search on Google, which are the websites which have authority within a niche. There are quite a few social media tools that allow us to quickly identify important, authority websites in bulk.

Authority websites may be part of your competition. But never copy the competition, think one step ahead of the competition. If they have thoughts about a new product that is out, position a story that says the product is already out of date.

Websites that command authority are there for a reason, they have perhaps had to blaze the trail, but it is you who will benefit from that and get to build your homestead on fresh and fertile lands.

Watch for articles that repeat. What evergreen content is working, I recently researched a piece and found it very useful to be able to identify evergreen content in competitors:

By identifying usable, evergreen content in your niche and publishing your own version you can boost the traffic and branding of your website.

Graham Charlton on Evergreen content and why it’s important.

Evergreen content is that which is still interesting and relevant weeks, months or even years after its initial publish date. It doesn’t date like news, and the value is that it can deliver traffic, leads, social shares and can occupy valuable search positions for a prolonged period of time.

Isolating what are evergreen content within a niche is very important in being able to understand what content is working and what is not.

Conclusion

Some call all this content marketing, and whilst that may be an accurate term for certain parts of the publishing process, it does not connect all the dots needed to have a complete understanding of the process involved.

A deeper understanding of the publishing process from creation, to promotion to measurement, is a vital tool for the SEO to add to their skillset.

Lyndon Antcliff

Published 17 February, 2015 by Lyndon Antcliff

Lyndon is an author and writer of all things to do with creating publishing strategies that excite and attract, and is an evangelist for CognitiveSEO.com. He is a contributor to Econsultancy. You can follow him on Twitter and Google+.

1 more post from this author

You might be interested in

Comments (24)

Comment
No-profile-pic
Save or Cancel
Avatar-blank-50x50

Len Diamond, Principal / Writer at Len Diamond Technical/Marketing Communications

Regarding your section on "Response":
although you put it second, I understand selling a product or service. The others puzzle me.
Emotional attachment, recognition, follows -- these may be satisfying to the ego, but what is the ultimate goal? If the ultimate goal is to sell a product or advocate an idea, there's a more direct way to do it. You hint at it in the "Mindset" section with the 4-point formula. (I subscribe to a 5-point process myself, but we're close at that point.)
You mention "free information," meaning free to the reader. It's not free to the publisher; it will have cost money or time or effort to put it out there. What is the expected return on that investment? or is it a charitable gesture?

almost 3 years ago

Lyndon Antcliff

Lyndon Antcliff, Writer at magneticwebcontent.com

Hi Len, thanks for reading the article.

With regards to response other than selling a product or service, these are all ways to eventually get people to buy the product or service.
Some people need to build trust before getting out the wallet and all those listed work in some way to that goal.

Thus allowing a website to send you email communication enables the business to build trust and to answer questions which will hopefully attract you to purchase.

The ultimate goal is defined by the business plan, this process described above is to get you to that goal.

I agree, there is a more direct way to sales, but this article is about publishing, and using publishing to communicate a message. The end goal is really up to the communicator.

With regards to producing communication, there is absolutely a cost to the publisher. However my focus was on the fact that it was free to the reader and the value for the publisher was not in financial recompense, but in another way.

almost 3 years ago

Avatar-blank-50x50

Len Diamond, Principal / Writer at Len Diamond Technical/Marketing Communications

I appreciate the thoughtful response, but it leaves me with the same old question. If it's a business and not a charity or a hobby, what is the other way to be compensated?
If it's the other responses listed -- you say they're all ways to get people to eventually buy, anyway. But wouldn't it be better to have them buy sooner rather than eventually? Why not directly advertise to them the benefits to be gained from your product or service and start the buying conversation now?

almost 3 years ago

Lyndon Antcliff

Lyndon Antcliff, Writer at magneticwebcontent.com

"But wouldn't it be better to have them buy sooner rather than eventually?"

Yes, and any ideas of how you can get people to by sooner than later will find an eager audience.

"Why not directly advertise to them the benefits to be gained from your product or service and start the buying conversation now?"

This happens already in direct advertising and works. What I describe is simply another tool in the toolbox. Direct advertising isn't dead and marketing through publishing has been happening for quite a number of years.
The internet simply creates a new space for this kind of communication to exist. Consider the Michelin Guide, what's restaurant reviews got to do with selling tires? What I describe is the same thing, the only difference is I am talking about using the internet as the medium.

There are countless examples of this form of marketing and perhaps that should form the bones of my next post.

almost 3 years ago

Avatar-blank-50x50

Len Diamond, Principal / Writer at Len Diamond Technical/Marketing Communications

Can't tell you how much better I feel hearing you say advertising isn't dead and still works. You're probably aware that some people in the content marketing cult have literally declared traditional advertising dead (I have the quote) and I find myself fighting that fight repeatedly.
My idea for getting people to buy sooner is the idea I presented: start the buying conversation sooner. Tell them up front what they can gain from buying what you're selling. Maybe I'm too b2b-oriented, but that seems a better idea than gathering followers and creating emotional attachments. You may be in for a lengthy purchasing process; get it started early rather than later.
But I'll lighten up and concede there may be more than one way to sell things. I just think my way is better.
I had no idea the restaurant guide is related to the tire comp;any (I don't eat out much, and then probably not at the type of establishments likely to be reviewed). Does everyone except me know this?

almost 3 years ago

Lyndon Antcliff

Lyndon Antcliff, Writer at magneticwebcontent.com

I don't like jargon, although sometimes it cannot be avoided.
I try to avoid the term "content marketing", as I believe it is overused by people who don't know what the term actually mean.

Not that I have a religious hatred towards content marketing, some of my best friends are content marketers.

But it leads to lazy thinking.

I much prefer to call it publishing, but the tide is against me.

Now, I prefer to be led by the data. If it works, I use it.

If display advertising did not work then Google would not exist, PPC is basically display advertising. You want it? Here it is, click here instead of phone. This creates a huge amount of online sales.

The marketer must know about all the tools in the tool box and what they do. Each tool performs a different task.

It is said that people need contact with a brand, at least 7 times before they purchase. Rarely do people see an advert, buy the product. I have done this sometimes for cleverly marketed digital products.

If your previous position is that there was only one way to sell, I wonder what you thought of things like the Red Bull stunts, or Richard Branson doing the things that Richard Branson usually does, or Eddison electrocuting an elephant?

The Michelin Guide is an interesting case study, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michelin_Guide. Not one that can be easily replicated, but the essence can be taken and used by others.

I think not everyone can make a direct link between the guide of posh nosh and the black, dirty tires that help the automobile give a smooth ride.

almost 3 years ago

Avatar-blank-50x50

Natalie Eagling, Marketing Manager at Force24

As a marketer with a strong publishing background, I have been banging this drum for a while now! I'm so glad to read that someone else is too! I think the analogy could be taken even further. For instance, the quality of "SEO" content is in some cases dire. If people thought more like a publisher, who needs to deliver true value to an audience, content would be thought through, would hang off one "Big Idea" and not "Top 10s/20s/50s" etc etc. Each and every piece would be thought through and planned, written, proofed, amended, proofed more, and only be published when it was 100% ready.

People wouldn't have hang ups on "too much content" for peoples whittling attention spans, because they would know that if it was valuable and engaging, unheard of ideas or concepts, people wouldn't become bored of the content.

They would know to tackle each piece with a clear formula:
Picture: Build a picture, set the scene, position the argument, pull emotionally on the reader
Promise: Make a bold claim, a big promise, and then back that up with...
Proof: Provide lots and lots of back up, quotes, other sources which all work to make your Big Idea even BIGGER.
PUSH: The most important part of any content / SEO / Marketing / Publishing is creating a desire to ACT. Whether that is to turn the page, or to pay your subscription fee next month, or to (as you rightly said) collect an email address or a social action, the Push should achieve this.

This would mean that sensationalist headlines with no substance would become a thing of the past. Content marketers could produce LESS content, but make it better quality, only speaking when they have something truly inspiring to say. This would stop our attention spans from becoming so short because we wouldn't need to sort the wheat from the chaff. We would only read genuinely good content.

^^ Perfect world scenarios and all that... your article does a great job of getting people to rethink the formulaic and sometimes user UN-friendly SEO techniques and in their place put the user first.

And by the way, why don't we stop calling them users, or visitors and instead call them subscribers and readers?

almost 3 years ago

Lyndon Antcliff

Lyndon Antcliff, Writer at magneticwebcontent.com

Thank you Natalie for your comments, really appreciate them.

I use the label " readers", as that was how I was taught during my media communications degree. "Users" always makes me think of addicts waiting for their next fix.
I doubt there will be a consensus regarding this and much better to eat a donut than worry too much about it.

SEO techniques were created to solve a specific problem which search engines presented them. They did it very well until Google finally got real, and even now there are ways to manipulate and massage.

I love a sensationalist headline, they make me laugh. Perhaps I am too long in the tooth to be taken in by them, but when a sensationalist headline presents sensational content, you are in for a big piece of pie.

I agree with your thoughts on publishing, it's what writers learn first. But the SEO community needs to learn, some will, some wont. Once they learn they simply have to find a writer that is not completely insane and will focus for at least an hour, to get them to create great content.

Again, thanks for the comment

almost 3 years ago

Pete Austin

Pete Austin, CINO at Fresh Relevance

Re: "The headline is not the full meal, it is the whiff of a meal, and its intention is to make the mouth water, to induce anticipation. It is not a detailed description"

Maybe for social, but this seems wrong when you're producing content to be found via search. Consider what happens when the reader is looking at a search results page and deciding which of the articles to click. They have the subjects and content extracts to go on.

I would always click an article where the subject confirms it's what I want, vs one that's just sizzle. Do you have hard data to show that other people go for the sizzle instead of a subject that closely matches their search?

almost 3 years ago

Tim Aldiss

Tim Aldiss, Consultant/Director at ThinkSearch

Lyndon you rock. Great piece

almost 3 years ago

Lyndon Antcliff

Lyndon Antcliff, Writer at magneticwebcontent.com

Pete, I understand where you are coming from. People like to think they make rational decisions which are only based on their conscious thinking, but this is not how I brains work.

It is how we like to think they work.

But I like your challenge of coming up with some hard data to demonstrate sizzle over sausage as there is tons of examples.

There have been tests that show simply changing the colour of a buy button will increase sales by 25%, which is completely irrational. you would expect if people want the thing they buy the thing. But the data clearly demonstrates that your unconscious mind is in charge.

Even down the the fact that supermarkets place their fruit and veg at the entrance to the store, so that you have "fresh, natural... etc" running around your heads.

What's that got to do with the price of beans? Everything.

I could talk for hours on this subject, on how Facebook Likes are a marketing strategy that taps the deep brain or why.... But I shall save it for later and I have the kettle on.

Thanks for commenting.

almost 3 years ago

Lyndon Antcliff

Lyndon Antcliff, Writer at magneticwebcontent.com

Tim, no way man. You are the one who rocks.

almost 3 years ago

Pete Austin

Pete Austin, CINO at Fresh Relevance

Lyndon, I'm only interested in choices made on a search results page, because this is a setting where $billions depend on the answer.

Google (or Bing) is in charge of color, layout etc. so those examples don't apply. All that marketers control is the text of the subject line and the extract chosen by the search engine.

Suppose I've searched for "How to Cook Eggs" and the first two results have subjects, "How You Cook Eggs" (a good match) and "The secret to tasty eggs" (a poor match, but more linkbait-y).

In such cases, is there any hard evidence that people pick the worse match? Has anyone done the experiment?

almost 3 years ago

Avatar-blank-50x50

Natalie Eagling, Marketing Manager at Force24

Hey Pete

Taken from Copyblogger http://my.copyblogger.com/basic/how-to-write-magnetic-headlines/:

Do Keywords in Post Titles Really Matter?

It’s an epic battle of biblical proportions in the blogosphere.

The search engine optimization camp says keywords are the most important aspect of a blog post title.

How else will you rank high in the results and get clicks by searchers, they say, if the right keywords are missing from the title?

On the other hand, you’ve got the purist “write for humans” camp, who collectively scoff at the notion of keyword research for headline writing.

What’s the point of search optimized post titles if no one reads or shares in the first place? And search engine traffic isn’t really all that important to most bloggers anyway, they vehemently maintain, especially compared to high- quality referral traffic from links.

Well, here’s the verdict.

Keywords matter. But not necessarily for the reasons the SEO folks think.

So if you’re writing any type of headline, online or off, you should be doing search engine keyword research. Because any great headline should speak in the language of the audience, while wrapped up in a time-tested structure that catches attention and offers value.

But it gets better.

Any SEO pro worth listening to will tell you that you don’t go after the most popular keywords. You target the niche phrases. They may result in less traffic individually, but there’s a lot more of them, and less competition.

This is perfect for writing headlines for humans. The niche phrases are much more specific, and specificity makes for a much better headline. Further, better headlines lead to better content when you write the headline first.

Google and the other search engines really do want to reflect what’s important to people. That’s why they use links and anchor text as one of the primary determinations of relevancy.

Keywords matter, because when you speak the language of the audience, you attract more readers, more links, more retweets, more social bookmarks, and yes... more relevant search traffic. Both camps are right, for different reasons.

I think the conclusion is: Yes, keywords are vital but they need to be wrapped with a bit of sizzle, and striking the perfect balance should be the aim.

But secondly to this, you may not be writing content only to ever be found via SEO. What if you have a piece of SEO content which is highly trafficked, as "traffic bait" to lead visitors to a piece which is completely sensationalist in its approach to the headline and the copy... but is only really there to decrease bounces and engage your readers? Then there is clearly a reason and a need for both - and potentially for them to work hand in hand?

almost 3 years ago

Lyndon Antcliff

Lyndon Antcliff, Writer at magneticwebcontent.com

Pete, all this is moot if you don't rank.
You rank because of links.
Links are given because of publishing.
SEO needs to learn about publishing

almost 3 years ago

Avatar-blank-50x50

Natalie Eagling, Marketing Manager at Force24

^^^ What he said... ^^^

almost 3 years ago

Lyndon Antcliff

Lyndon Antcliff, Writer at magneticwebcontent.com

Natalie, insightful stuff. I think you have the right methodology. The trick is to step back and see it in a more strategic manner.

Look at what works with objectivity and an eye on the goal and then chose the best tool for the job.

What I have learned after 15 years online is that the tactics change quickly, but the strategies are slower to update.

A lot of the truths pre internet, are still truths now.

almost 3 years ago

Avatar-blank-50x50

Natalie Eagling, Marketing Manager at Force24

I respectfully disagree - in this guise, it may seem like a "new" tactic that would be short-lived, but in publishing, this is something that has existed for years.

A book might be titled "How to Win Friends and Influence People" - clear, to the point, allows the reader to know exactly what they're about to read. But the chapters within will contain more "sizzle" - e.g. "The Big Secret of Dealing with People". This means readers are more likely to turn each page - that is the objective of the page before...

The same applies for portal sites just like this one which is a digital publisher. It will have search content which has been created for keywords, "SEO Best Practice Guide" for instance. But within, it will have articles to keep you reading, keep you "turning the page" so to speak - just like this article.

almost 3 years ago

Lyndon Antcliff

Lyndon Antcliff, Writer at magneticwebcontent.com

That tactics I am referring to relate to ranking in Google. For example, a few years ago a good tactic was to go to Squidoo and create 100's of pages that point to 10's of websites that then point to the "money" website.

It was extremely successful and those who ignored it did not not get the benefit. But that tactic is now dead.

However, those who took a more strategic view and realised that creating content which people actually want will pay more dividends in the end are winning.

Those who invested in short term tactics have had to switch to a more long term view.

almost 3 years ago

Avatar-blank-50x50

Len Diamond, Principal / Writer at Len Diamond Technical/Marketing Communications

I like your "publishing" as the alternative to "content." I may be the King Canute of marketing, trying, in blog and LinkedIn post, to stem the "content" tide. I feel it reduces writing to a commodity, driving price and published quality down.
The Red Bull thing was of course a fantastic publicity coup and I agree it will do a lot for that company. I hope I didn't sound like a one-trick pony. I've practiced PR myself (although nothing that dramatic) and it is one more indirect way of selling.

almost 3 years ago

Pete Austin

Pete Austin, CINO at Fresh Relevance

@Lynton @Natalie:

SEO is about two things: (1) you need to get your page to the list of search results and (2) you need to get the reader to open it. You need both - either by itself is no use.

Similarly, email marketing is about (1) you need to get your email into the inbox and (2) you need to get the reader to open it. Again you need both - either by itself is no use.

Email marketers spend massive effort on part 2 - you'll find lots of advice about how to craft a good subject line to make people click. So I find it frankly incredible if you're really suggesting that search marketers should ignore part 2 and not worry about making page titles highly clickable.

If this is a real gap in the SEO mindset, then it's a big opportunity to exploit.

over 2 years ago

Pete Austin

Pete Austin, CINO at Fresh Relevance

Sorry, @Lyndon

over 2 years ago

Lyndon Antcliff

Lyndon Antcliff, Writer at magneticwebcontent.com

Lee, "publishing", is an alternative label to "content marketing and I think it's an important distinction that positions the mind to focus on what's important.

But I stress that these are merely labels, what is really important is the methodology you use to approach this problem.

I have absolutely no problem in presenting writing as a commodity as long as what is produced is true to itself. Trade is more ancient than publishing.

Has quality been pushed down, possibly. However I think it's more that it's been "pulled" down. It is the more about what the crowd wants that what is being produced that is causing this.

The Red Bull example I present because of how they think, rather than what they do. It is your mindset, your attitude that governs whether you are good at this stuff, more than what you know or how good you think you are.

I don't have a problem with being a one trick pony, as long as what I offer is desired and I remember to pull back and see the bigger picture to enable for me to spot any Orcs creating pony traps.

over 2 years ago

Lyndon Antcliff

Lyndon Antcliff, Writer at magneticwebcontent.com

Pete, yes I understand your point. I agree with you that if people do not click on what is on the SERPS or have no desire to click, then that is a problem.

Although in my experience I have never found it to be that big a problem as usually Google does a good enough job at getting the right element on the page that is important on to the SERPS, usually a title tag or the H1 tag.

I think it is a gap in the SEO mindset, and one that those who add that skill to their skillset will have an edge.

Because I specialise in content creativity, and headline writing I see the gap is quite large. But easily filled.

over 2 years ago

Comment
No-profile-pic
Save or Cancel
Daily_pulse_signup_wide

Enjoying this article?

Get more just like this, delivered to your inbox.

Keep up to date with the latest analysis, inspiration and learning from the Econsultancy blog with our free Digital Pulse newsletter. You will receive a hand-picked digest of the latest and greatest articles, as well as snippets of new market data, best practice guides and trends research.