To drive traffic to your website organically is essential for your startup to expand your web presence without burning a hole in your pocket of advertising budget. Search engine optimization (SEO) is the phenomenon of bring into line your site’s content and design with best practices to enhance the visibility in search results, and it is an influential technique for expanding your brand online. Branding is the process involved in creating a unique name and image for a product in the consumers’ mind, mainly through advertising campaigns with a consistent theme. Branding aims to establish a significant and differentiated presence in the market that attracts and retains loyal customers. I have seen people struggling to choose between Branding and SEO, guess what; they need to work hand in hand to support your business and for you to earn profits. Here’s the truth: Both strategies not only support one another, but strengthen each other’s efforts to create a coordinated marketing image. When done right, this blend can be targeted, measurable and long-lasting. There’s a lot of advice for startups that embrace this idea, but it’s up to you to learn about the strategies that help you get the best of both worlds.
Building an entirely new brand: If you’ve recently launched your new business, initially, there would be no existing search volume for your company’s branded keywords, as your brand name simply hasn’t been around before.
In this case, your best SEO scenario should involve two chief tactics:
- Targeting traditional SEO keywords, and
- Building up brand recognition using other types of marketing.
For example, your startup is in the women’s fashion, you might want to target the phrases, “women’s clothing” or “online women’s fashion store” (depending on your business’s objectives). You can start with targeting the phrases and keywords that your users will be entering into the search engines regarding the services you provide with both your on-site and off-site SEO activities, you’ll begin to build up the momentum needed in order to build familiarity with your brand.
At the same time, though, you’ll want to put some effort into carrying out branding activities on other web properties in order to begin generating the branded search traffic needed to win in the SERPs over time. There are dozens of different ways to do this, but a few places to start include:
- Writing and submitting press releases detailing your startup’s launch and benefits.
- Setting up social media profiles on Facebook, twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest etc. and optimizing them with branded imagery.
- Claiming any local business profiles (as found on Google+) that are applicable to your business.
- Releasing content marketing pieces that capture your audience’s attention while promoting your brand
Insider’s secret, we started off with localized keywords like “SEO agency in Gurgaon” or “Brand awareness in Gurgaon through SEO”
Revamping the branding strategy for an existing website: Let’s say you’re an established company working on your digital marketing since a while according to the previous best SEO practices, and if you haven’t targeted any branded keywords, and decide to replace traditional keywords in order to make room for branded queries, be careful to monitor your results to ensure that you don’t see a reduction in natural search traffic or overall conversions.
At the same time, use Social media optimization strategies to brand certain hash tags related to your business and run the branding campaign, for offsite SEO
Pervade Optimization with Branding: We all understand the importance of content marketing when it comes to the overall digital marketing results. Content that brings in sales combines both best practices of SEO and branding. You are finally writing the content for the user, but make sure to write content for both the search engine and your audience. If you only write for your audience, you might not see a consistent improvement in your rankings. Abstract content that lacks optimization will only go so far.
Utilize the SEO practices while also focusing on your audience. These practices will ensure an influential content marketing engine that helps your rankings climb up and your branding become sturdier than ever.
The SEO Secret weapon: Reviews The total number and quality of reviews your brand seizes will directly have an effect on your rankings. They also have a huge impact on your brand. Remember where you didn’t order something online based on bad reviews? We all have done that. Likewise, we also make a decision to check out a new restaurant or indulge in impulse buying online because of some amazing reviews.
It works both ways – and it’s something you need to take into account when it comes to SEO and branding performance. Do you think it’s important to integrate these two marketing tools into a coordinated driving force? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.