How To Use SEO To Build Your Brand And Increase Brand Awareness
What is SEO? What is branding?
Moz, one of the authorities in SEO and link building will tell you Search Engine Optimization is the “practice of increasing quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engine results.”
Let us simplify the terms for you.
It involves keyword research and smart placement of certain keywords related to niche in a way that it becomes easy for searchers to find you. Because, more people need to find you and visit your website for you to efficiently run your business, make some sales and garner ROI.
SEO is Step 1 of digital marketing. Blogs, website content, social media posts and even Quora answers have to be search engine optimized to be found by the right people!
And branding? Your trump card to surpass those who have better ranking and better SEO than you. Yes, chart better click through rates and garner more revenue than those ahead of you in Google SERPs.
But literally speaking, branding is the creation of a strong positive image of your company and products in the minds of your customers. This is a time tested and sure-shot way of raking in new customers and keeping the loyal ones coming back.
Read on to find how SEO and branding are interlinked closely and how boosting one end always proves beneficial to the other.
Relationship between SEO and brand building
They’re interconnected in a never-ending cycle. That’s what it is! You need SEO for brand building. Brands rank higher in SEO results. But if you had to start somewhere, start with an SEO strategy.
SEO guru Neil Patel says “SEO is not the topping, it’s the base ingredient.” And truer words have not been uttered. Think about it. What is a brand image all about? User experience and customer loyalty.
Let’s start with the former. UX is part of SEO. The design of the webpage, the navigation, the storytelling- all heavily dependent on SEO. The site needs to load quickly.
The design needs to be appealing, easy on the eyes and the website should be easily navigable. If you make it difficult to navigate, a good percentage won’t even make the effort to hunt for what they want.
The content needs to be relevant and skimmable- even if people don’t have time to go through 2000 words, they should get a jist of what you’re saying.
These three factors heavily contribute to search rankings and boost user experience.
Now the latter- customer loyalty. How do you go from having a target audience to having a loyal customer base?
Through a 4-step mantra.
- Kick off your quest by featuring in the first page off Google.
- Woo them with your landing page and get them to subscribe to your list.
- Pitch your offer sensibly and make your sales.
- Win them over with your products and services.
I know, it sounds simple but is a tough and lengthy process. But you’ll get there eventually. And once you get there, you’ve accomplished your job- a positive brand image and brand credibility.
But did you notice point A of the process? Google SERPs and rankings. So yes, again, SEO! It is impossible to build your brand without employing SEO strategies!
How branding helps in getting more clicks
We’ll let you in on a (not so uncommon) secret. Google is partial to bigger brands. There. We told you.
Nike for shoes. Hubspot for marketing. Wilson for tennis racquets.
Your product may be better, your content may be hypnotic, but it wouldn’t matter- the niche giants would still rank above you and feature in the knowledge panels and feature snippets.
Even when these brands step outside the line, Google gives them a mock suspension and brings them back within hours. Yes, it’s unfair. But it’s totally fair through Google’s point of view.
They simply want to do right by their users. Which is why they throw up the most credible brands and products in their top 10 results, so that no user is taken for a ride. This way, even if the smaller businesses need it more, the bigger brands get the most traction, busy traffic and skyrocketing click-through rates. It just proves that the bigger the brand, the better chances of clicking!
5 ways in which SEO strategies can boost brand awareness
Branding is a lengthy process that normally takes a long amount of time. But, we can leverage a few SEO strategies to go quicker than most! But what are these strategies?
1. Build backlinks
Link building is a tedious process in itself but you must keep going- broken links, infographics, whatever you like.
If you are a blogger, you can write guest posts for onlines biggies like ThriveGlobal. Or else, you can create content on social media sites and then add links which takes readers to your website.
Here, you can make good use of tools like Reddit and Quora, which millions of people use on a daily basis. If your answers on Reddit and Quora get good traction, then quite a few people will be driven to your site and who knows, quite a few may turn to future customers!
2. Optimize your content marketing strategies for branding
Fuse smart SEO with solid content and voila, you have a cracking branding strategy! Do good research. Put your analytics software to work. See what users want, what users need, what they have been asking for on search engines.
Once you have this information, implement on-page SEO in its best form. Place your keywords strategically in the title, the meta data and subheadings. Make sure you pop up in the featured snippets!
Bring your content A-game to the table and brand recognition will just follow!
3. Reach the right people with long-tail keywords
Using long-tail keywords is like pitching directly to a small group of people who have a good chance of going for your product. Bear in mind that searches are primarily of four types:
- Informational (not looking to buy, but gathering information and doing research for a certain product)
- Commercial (looking to buy but has time on hands and would rather compare and contrast similar items, looking for the best)
- Transactional ( out for the real deal- they are going to buy or subscribe, they need it NOW to complete a task)
- Navigational (highly informed group who are specifically searching for a particular site or brand, they are more likely to go for the particular domain itself)
Long-tail keywords are lethal tools to bring the interested people right to your door. Target as many long-tail keywords as possible while writing your content and optimizing your site for SEO. You are more likely to reach groups of people who hold a higher degree of interest in your product.
4. Gun for niche audience
Small business owners, take note. The more you niche down, the more chances you have of making a sale!
Social media is giving you the perfect platform to look for your audience Hunt down prospects and turn them into customers. But how? Smart keyword research.
Track them, follow their interests, see what they are looking for on the internet. Once you’ve done that, pitch to them! Use specific niche keywords and attract them to your site.
The more you focus on a single product, the more recognition you will get for it. Returning customers will do the word-of-mouth marketing for you! That will create unparalleled brand awareness for you!
5. Build a positive brand image
Use a bunch of keywords in your content so that your name is thrown up during quite a few searches. But. Your brand should revolve around a single keyword. All prospects and future customers should know you are the ultimate name to pursue for that particular keyword! This way, you can effectively align your brand and SEO strategy.
Relationship between brand reputation and SEO – Ways to create a good online brand reputation
Brand building has become *relatively* easier in the digital world. There is so much space on the internet to showcase your content, display your products and demonstrate your services.
And of course, SEO has a GIANT role to play here.
Start with a website. Or a few, of related domains. I know, big investment! But the ROI can be crazy if you end up building a solid brand image!
Go crazy with your content. Write a bunch of blogs and guest posts, all keyword-friendly, mind you.
Go ballistic on social media- keep posting on multiple platforms, using keywords and hashtags you want to rank for, and keep updating all data you post. Be consistent with posts, quality and keywords. This way, you will be attracting prospects like a moth to a flame!
Let’s take a close look at what Solomon Colors did. They weren’t having a smooth time with organic traffic! So they hired an SEO strategist. The solutions they implemented?
- On-page SEO (all subheadings started with a keyword and the content had few specific long-tail keywords Solomon Colors wanted to rank for)
- Image Optimization (alt tags and proper coding for each and every photo and video)
- Topic generator( for blogs which would interest target audience)
The results received?
- 85% increase in number of keywords they ranked for in Page 1
- 150% hike in number of keywords they ranked for in Page 2
- 113% rise in image rankings
With this astronomical rise in their Google SERP rankings, their website traffic and click-through-rate also shot up! They started getting a lot more traction and with smart offers managed to convert quite a few prospects to customers!
This way, they’ve managed to build a solid brand for themselves! They now have a steady customer base and their SEO strategies have made sure they keep coming up on the first page of results frequently. So more traffic, more leads, more sales.
Mission brand-building: SUCCESSFUL!
This is just a small example of what Seattle New Media can do to drive organic traffic to your website! All you have to do is drop an email and we’re on it!
Summary – How you can use SEO for your brand
Let’s leave aside all the technical jargon for a while! SEO is a compulsory part of brand building in 2020.
Building links, optimizing content for keywords, generating keywords to appeal to target audience – all this directly leads to brand building and perception! With better SEO, you get better traffic.
To set up a positive brand image, you need customers to drop into your website. And SEO provides that first step.
Then you need to create compelling content on your homepage, to make sure the readers are forced to hit the ‘ Subscribe Now’ button. This too depends on if you managed to sneak in those important keywords to sway your client- so SEO again.
The moment they enter your email list, they’ve entered your sales funnel! From here on, it’s on you – the pitching, the sales and customer satisfaction.
And once they are happy, consider your job half done (the other half is to keep nurturing leads).
This is the very beginning of a loyal customer base, the biggest prerequisite for being an accomplished BRAND!
This blog is aimed at showing you that SEO and branding are not mutually exclusive. They’re actually interconnected deeply. While SEO helps in sales and brand building, having a sound brand image boosts your SEO.
But you needn’t bother this much if you just take us on! At Seattle New Media, we know the channels to tap into and the platforms to look for target audiences.
We’ll build an effective strategy to use SEO for brand awareness. All you need to do is give us a holler!