How I’m Going to Make the Transition from SEO into Pure Play Internet Marketing

May 20, 2013 - by admin · Filed Under Affiliate Blog Leave a Comment 
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    If you read my blog last month then you’ll see that I wanted to pivot my business away from relying on Google.  I also had a rough guide on how I wanted my traffic sources to look like for most of my sites in 6-12 months time:

    33% from Search (90% Google, 10% other – so only 30% of my total traffic is from google,including navigational brand queries)
    25% Direct Type-ins
    25% Referrals
    10% Social
    7% other (including email, forums, word of mouth)

    How Am I Going to Get Away from Google?

    The facts are that I don’t want to rely on Google anymore.  Even if you’re an expert in white hat SEO and get the best links possible from PR and newspapers, I still wouldn’t want to rely on Google.  It’s far too risky.

    With that said, I want to explain how I’m going to try and get away from this pure play SEO mindset and do proper Internet marketing.

    Make a Website where Visitors Come Back for More Content

    First of all, I think it starts with the actual quality of your website and the value that you provide.  You simply can’t expect a small 100-page affiliate site to rank for big keywords long term using white hat SEO anymore.  White hat SEO is all about building a brand, getting the right “signals” and organic growth.  In other words, you need to plan a website where users come back for more information.  If your site is set up to receive traffic from Google, convert it into paid leads and for never come back, then your long-term plan is already flawed.

    In order to get users to come back to your site, I think you need some sort of value such as excellent content, useful tools, daily deals, interviews, surveys, competitions, information, guides, research, directories and/or a service.  You also need consistency with all of this stuff – good things take time and commitment to build out properly, and information needs updating every now and then.

    What Marketing Methods Am I Going to Use?

    Over last the couple of weeks I’ve realized that SEO is only a tiny fraction of the online marketing channels available. The problem is that quite frankly my websites have sucked in the past.  This has made traffic diversification such as social media harder because for the most part the content genuinely hasn’t been good enough to be shared.

    On the other hand, if you publish great, industry-leading content or thought provoking/humorous stuff then other people will be happy to share and follow your stuff.  The same is true of hiring expensive, high quality writers instead of generic copywriters at the starting salary level.

    With that being said, I plan to use the following channels to diversify my traffic:

    • Direct Type-in Traffic – Hardly anyone ever mentions this as a traffic source but it’s the most important one in my opinion.  Building a brand with great content means having repeat visitors who follow your brand and come back for more.  Personally, I want the mentality that direct, type-in traffic should be my biggest traffic source.
    • Referral Traffic from other Blogs, Forums and News Sites – There’s nothing wrong with guest posting if it’s done for the right reasons, i.e. driving traffic to your website and adding credibility to your brand.  I also think having content linked to from forums, whether it’s natural links or people clicking your signature, is great.  I also get a lot of people visiting through my signature on the major affiliate forums – imagine if you did this with forums in your own niches…
    • Content Syndication and Social Bookmarking – If you write a great piece of content, why not get it syndicated across the web? Post your articles on leading social bookmarking and blogs in your industry. Make this a force of habit too!  The website is a great example of this.  I’ve also realized that if you publish something great, you should really be reaching out to journalists and other bloggers using more personal contact methods. 
    • Video Marketing – I’m fairly new to this game, but I’m going to be investing reasonable sums of money of the next few months in videos for some of my sites.  They provide a great alternative traffic source, add value to articles, plus if you syndicate them in the right places then you can get increased traffic and exposure for your brand.
    • Twitter, Facebook and Google+ Having more followers means more people reading and discovering your content once it’s published, as well as more referral traffic.  Furthermore, authoritative followers who re-tweet your content can create huge amounts of traffic.  I’ve already seen this happen with some of my previous articles.
    • PR and Infographics – Again, if done for the right reasons I think these can be great traffic generation and branding strategies.  Conduct surveys using your user base or summarize information from elsewhere and produce killer PR stories with infographics on your site.  Get the message out there that you’re an authority site and a leader in the community.  A good investment in PR will also lead to increased communication with bloggers, reporters and journalists, which will bring additional opportunities further down the line.
    • Email Marketing – Regardless of how you incentivize people to sign up to your email, your aim should be to turn your email list into a steady stream of traffic to your website.  Find a way of providing enough value to users to keep visiting your site (e.g. premium content, competitions, freebies, weekly deals).
    •  Create a Service or Product – I’m strongly looking into doing this for one of my trading website, i.e. a premium service that I can offer.  I guess the overall advantage of creating a product is that it puts you in a better position to do PPC and Facebook marketing, other people will naturally review and link to your product, plus it provides a diversified revenue source.
    • Partner with Other Leaders in your Industry – There’s nothing wrong with a bit of cross promotion with others in your industry.   SEOmoz and do it all the time, as do Facebook and Bing etc.  I’m working with a University for one of my sites, which provides a service that actually adds value and credibility to one of my own student sites.

    In conclusion, these are just a handful of ways that I/you can plan to diversify my traffic and stop depending on any one-traffic source.   They also all indirectly lend themselves to an organic, white hat SEO strategy that plays into my hands, plus when you create an industry leading site then the opportunities (including reporters, journalists and advertisers) come knocking on your door rather then the other way around.

    I’m also keeping an open mind when it comes to consulting plus I genuinely enjoy writing/blogging on certain issues relating to internet marketing (such as new gTLDs), which I guess also helps with the marketing aspect of things and builds my confidence going forward.

    Follow Me on Twitter @AffiliateFYI for Even More Affiliate, Business and SEO Updates!

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