During the past couple of weeks I have been telephone cold called (pestered) by a company wishing to interest me in using its services in search engine optimisation (SEO). As good fortune would have it, all the calls have been at an inopportune time either when I was in a meeting (honestly) or in the car on my mobile.
In any case I am not enthusiastic about being solicited on the telephone so perhaps I was rather less than accommodating, but even so, it caused me to think about the whole subject.
They were right, my website does not rate highly in a search for the keywords which I am using but then again, the competition is considerable and in the end, what is the purpose of the website anyway?
It seems to me that there are very broadly two types of website, one which is essentially an electronic brochure with perhaps a modicum of interactivity, and the other a commercial site interactively selling goods and services.
There is a perfectly good case for both of these systems. In the former case, it is possible to provide updates and news on a regular basis always on the assumption that interested parties will go directly to the website having been encouraged to do so by.
I know that this is an outrageous oversimplification but I would guess that the percentages stack up. The marketing author and speaker, Seth Godin, says that, again in broad terms, it is better to focus on a very small section of the market place which you know is or could be interested in your products or services, than to use the blunderbus approach which is hit and hope.
I recall a Vistage speaker some time ago who said that just putting a brochure on your website was tantamount to putting it on a rocket at Cape Canaveral, blasting it off into the Milky Way and hoping that an interested customer would have his telescope trained on it at just the right time.
Thinking through the whole matter then, I have perhaps realised that the methods which I use are far more focused than using SEO on the website. I write a blog on a very regular basis once a week, then I advertise it on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook as well as sending it to a list of perhaps two hundred named recipients who I know or at least hope will be interested.
That way I have focused my efforts on a genuinely potential market and I am not wasting my efforts hoping that SEO will bring up contacts. Focus as much as possible therefore on the marketplace which is appropriate to you and your products or services or at least on those people with whom you want to do business.
A man used a search engine to find a group of people who were interested in sex with goats and the search engine laconically asked him "Please specify the breed of goat". Now that's focus.
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