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There’s so much more you can do…

…once you get the hang of SEO.

We spend a lot of time here at Newfangled talking about SEO. Most of our clients place a high value on getting their website to the first page of search results for keywords pertaining to their industry – and rightly so. In an effort to make this happen, a lot of companies can fall into the trap of creating content whose sole purpose is to attract search engine indexing bots. But when’s the last time that a robot bought one of your products or contacted you to learn more about the services you offer? Seriously, tell me your stories if this has happened to you. Because that’s totally awesome.

SEO is very important. However, we should certainly be spending the same amount of time (at least) in an effort to connect with real, live humans as we do attempting to connect with the Google bots that crawl our sites daily. After all, more web conversions (i.e. completions of calls to action) come from human referrals than from search engine traffic. And simply having a Facebook page or a Twitter account doesn’t cut it these days—what benefit do people get from being a fan of your company on Facebook? What valuable information can consumers gain access to through following you on Twitter?

My guess is that if you got a few people together to brainstorm, you could come up with some relatively easy and inexpensive ways to connect with your would-be customers and target audience. For instance, consider reaching out to a retailer of your product and asking them to recommend a few of their regular, loyal customers. You could then connect with these customers, give them a (free) product to try, and ask them to contribute to your company blog or Twitter feed. If they have their own related blog, they could agree to write a review of your product there with some links back to your site as well (incoming links contribute to SEO too!). This is just one example of how you can extend your reach even further, past your website’s meta titles and keywords, to connect with people who will remember your company and pass along a good word or two. Our November 2009 newsletter has some other insights on ways to make sure that your website speaks clearly to people.

After all, most of us are much more likely to act upon a recommendation from someone that we know and trust—an actual person who has had a positive experience with a specific company or brand. Because while most of us can agree that robots can be a valuable wellspring of information when brushing up on your dance moves, we’re much more likely to trust another human when it comes to a recommendation for a product or service. Just think about how often you browse through online customer reviews before making a purchase.

What are some creative ways that your company has tried to connect with your target audience?

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