Increasingly it is common knowledge on how to do best practice search engine optimisation. That doesn’t make it easy, but it does mean you’ll need to start thinking more creatively to keep a competitive edge.

So outside your standard SEO best practice, what more creative tactics might you use?

We recently published our Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – Best Practice Guide where we have attempted to tell you all you need to know about how to go about improving your natual search rankings.

However, beyond these ‘basics’ (over 200 pages worth…) are there opportunities to be getting a bit more creative with SEO?

Here are a few thoughts…

  • Whatever sector you are in, run an online competition for “Best Blog in [your sector]”. Give a decent enough prize. Hey presto you get loads of bloggers linking to you within your sphere of expertise. For example, MarketingSherpa’s 10 Best Blogs for 2005. There I go, I’ve only gone and linked to them again….
  • Invent a new term or word that
    you can rank on then create search queries for it using other forms of marketing and advertising. For example, you’re going to have a hard time ranking top for a search on ‘broadband’, particularly if you’re a new market entrant. However, if you can persuade people that broadband is really old hat, and what they really need is the latest high-speed technology called “fatpipe3” then you’ve got precisely zero cometition at the moment (until this post gets indexed of course…)
  • Guess Google’s themed logos. You know when Google change their logo to make a particular event or character? And when you click on their logo it then runs a search on that event or character. Imagine how much traffic that must generate… Worth a guess or two.
  • Piggback competitors’ ad and marketing spend. Obviously you can’t optimise on their trademarked names or brands and it may be very hard for you to compete on the most competiive keywords. However, think about common misspellings. You may have a hard time with ‘broadband’ but you’ve got a much better chance with ‘boardband
  • Piggyback real world events.  Real world events generate search queries. Obviously there are the likes of The World Cup, Valentines Day, Christmas and so on. But are there more niche events which are important to your target market? Could you pre-optimise for these to reap the rewards when the search volumes spike in the run up to the event? For example, we might to choose to optimise on the phrase “Internet World Show” knowing when it is coming up. If you look at Blogpulse’s measurement of blog buzz for this phrase you’ll see it spiking (not surprisingly) around the time of the show itself.

Anyone tried any of these? Anyone got other similar ideas they’ve tried?

Ashley Friedlein, CEO, E-consultancy.com