The dance that matters

e-Marketers and Product Managers spend a large number of planning, measurement, and adjustment cycles trying to position their product/service within search results.  Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM) are now job functions in many corporate hierarchies. Rightly so, search results from Google, Yahoo, and Bing collect both prospective and repeat customers.  Getting to the top of the natural search results or managing a successful pay-for-advertising campaign can make a tremendous difference in the bottom line each month.

The thought occurred to me this week that in the quest to move up the search engine rankings we are in a dance with a computer algorithm.  The top dancers are awarded places in the results equated to order on the search results page.

The Dance

Are you in synch with your customers?

Successful dancers use style element such as keywords and content. Just like with human judges, our dance results are biased based on reputation (back links).

The thing is, we base our understanding of the algorithm on past results, educated guesses, and recommendations from the algorithm designers.  What’s the purpose of this dance? It’s to attract others (prospects and customers).  This brings me to my point. Who is left out of the dance if we focus all our attention on this one partner? The customer.

The real dance in the equation is with the customer, a real person. The SEO/SEM dance is important, but it’s just the warm-up for the dance that matters.  I hear the expression “content is king” quite a bit. That’s because good content that is customer driven is the key to getting a customer to use the site and to repeat their purchase (the dance!).

So here’s to the dance that matters.  You can warm-up with SEO/SEM strategies and tactics. But remember, the real prize is to dance with the pretty girl who didn’t come with a date. She’s looking for a partner. Will you dance with her?

Photo: Odissi by Iqbal Saggu is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.