This was the first Brighton SEO I’ve been to where I didn’t hear anyone claim that “[insert industry term] is dead”. That was a win.
My key takeaways from Brighton SEO (Sept ’17):
It’s all about user intent (duh). Being customer centric and making sure that you’re delivering the content that answers questions and engages the user can only be a good thing.
Therefore…you must have a clear picture of your ideal customer profile and personas. Make sure everyone in the business knows these personas so you are all geared towards meeting the needs of the right people (and know who to avoid).
Develop a clear customer story, build out from this by asking yourself:
- What’s the pain? How does the problem manifest in your ideal customer’s life? What’s the symptom? What’s the problem? What are the risks?
- What’s the workaround? How are they trying to solve their problem, is it a hack? It makes sense, but it’s a bad idea because…
- What’s the solution? Show the alternative and the proof that it’s better than their current approach.
- Demonstrate the possibilities – give them the before and after picture
- Reduce risk – show them that it’s easier than they think, it’s not a difficult decision to make.
Make sure you differentiate your customer story – make sure you live the fact that you’re different to your competitors. Don’t do the same old shit as everyone else…just because that’s the market convention.
When you build out content topics to support your customer story, consider how these break down and meet the needs of the user at different stages of the buyer journey.
Finally, don’t make false promises. If your button says “Get a quote now”…but they’re not going to get any pricing immediately then you’re setting yourself up to piss off a potential customer. Be transparent, don’t trick people, build trust from the start and meet their expectations.
The tools and platforms I’m going to think about using (more) after today:
Speaking of expectations…I’m no fan of speakers who sell their session as something along the lines of ‘a small trick to gain xxx% increase in traffic’ …and then spend half of their slot demoing their tool, which is completely out of reach for a small business. Don’t call it a quick win if it requires thousands of pounds investment first. Or at least tell us what an alternative approach would be if you’re on a shoestring. (Rant over).
There were, however, some great free tools mentioned throughout the day…because they make people’s lives easier…not because someone was selling something.
The majority of these were mentioned by Sam Charles in her session on blogging advice that will make your life easier.
- Self-control – A Mac application that stops you from procrastinating on Facebook and the like
- Use timer to give some urgency
- Ubersuggest – I already use this but should do more!
- Quora – to see what people are asking about a particular topic. I don’t do this, but should.
- Answerthepublic.com – this sounds awesome
- Askreddit – to get user input, opinions and answers from public on a topic…great idea to use this to get authentic angle to content
- Trello – I use this already for content planning, but worth listing as so many ways to build in for project management
- Canva – I’ve used it but always go back to photoshop when perhaps Canva is quicker for social images
- Grammarly – I used to use this but hadn’t installed the plugin on my new computer. Now fixed.
- Hemmingway app – love this!
- Buzzsumo – I’ve never paid this much attention but should do more
- Pixarbay and Unsplash for beautiful free stock images
- Boomerang – to schedule emails for another time
- Canned responses – save time with standard replies rather than re-typing emails
Finally, to round up, this slide from Olga Andrienko made me chuckle…