Do you love ‘em and leave ‘em online?

Imagine this…
You’ve finally gotten a date with the girl (or guy) of your dreams. He or she wines you, dines you and treats you like royalty. You’re enamored. You’re blown away. You’re willing to do anything to keep the good vibrations going.
Then, the relationship reaches the … um … conversion phase. You’re on cloud nine …
… until the person never calls you again.
If you’ve had this happen to you, you know how it feels. You go from telling your friends [...]

How to build an internal content team: Do this, not that

Yes, you can source low-cost, quality content by leveraging your internal resources (I talked about this last week.)
If you follow some basic guidelines.
The key to a strong internal team is putting the right puzzle pieces together the right way. I’ve helped a number of companies tap into their teams and uncover some fantastic “diamond-in-the-rough” SEO writers.
For some companies, the process has gone smoothly. Others faced a rough road, full of missed deadlines, resentful employees and a failed content effort.
Here’s what separates [...]

How to source low-cost, quality SEO content

Are you wondering how your company can actually afford quality SEO content?
You’re not alone.
Companies are drowning in content needs. The existing marketing department (assuming there is one) may be too swamped to consistently write articles and blog posts.
Finding outsourced vendors can be equally frustrating. Companies are often looking for Cadillac-level SEO content when they have Yugo-level budgets.
The results are rarely positive. Especially with how Google has tightened down on content (see Eric Enge’s article for more information.)
I’ve chatted with many [...]

FUD, Hummingbird and the future of SEO copywriting

So, Google’s Hummingbird algorithm has officially taken flight.
And it’s amazing how many people have their collective panties in a knot because of it.
If you’re not familiar with Google’s latest algorithm, here’s what Danny Sullivan reported:
“Google said that Hummingbird is paying more attention to each word in a query, ensuring that the whole query — the whole sentence or conversation or meaning — is taken into account, rather than particular words. The goal is that pages matching the meaning do better, [...]

SEO Copy Manager Richard Hostler talks in-house SEO copywriting

Brookstone SEO Copy Manager and Ironman (he completed the triathlon in July), Richard Hostler takes time out of his work, and workout, schedule to answer our in-house SEO copywriting questions.
Brookstone has such a great “voice” for product descriptions. How was this style developed, and what do you recommend to other in-house copy teams who are trying to determine their company voice?
We’ve come a long way from our early days of selling specialty tools via mail order. Back then, it was [...]

Feeling the burn and seeking some balance

“Feel the burn!” If you hear this when you are working out, it is a good thing.
However, I have been feeling a different kind of burn lately. I’ve been:

Burning the candle at both ends.
Getting burned out.

I realized that I am about to crash and burn … and that’s not good.
Over the last six months, my life has gone through many ups and downs. Most recently, I shifted my copywriting business to an off-hours endeavor and started a 9-to-5 job (well [...]

Yes, you do need an SEO copywriting strategy. Here’s why

Imagine this:
You suddenly decide to move to Chicago. Instead of lining up a job and doing your due diligence, you immediately jump in the car and start driving. You don’t take anything with you. Nor do you check Google Maps and figure out your route. You just point the car and go.
Would you make it to Chicago? Eventually. Would you make a lot of wrong turns (and probably cost yourself a bunch of money along the way?) Most likely. And [...]

Write sexy SEO content (for any industry!)

Are you faced with writing content for a “boring” industry?
You don’t need to replicate your competitor’s campaigns. Nor do you have to write page after dull page (resisting the urge to poke your eyes out with every word.)
You just have to think of an unique angle to “sexify” your content!
When I say “sexy,” I don’t mean pictures of well endowed women wearing low-cut shirts and push up bras. You may get some temporary play with that technique, but it will [...]

What Seth Godin can teach you about SEO content

Tell me if this sounds familiar.
The marketing and SEO teams brainstorm the keyphrases, do the research and determine the keywords that represent strong content opportunities. Then, the writing team takes over and writes 500-word articles on “How to find the right cataraft for your trip,” or “Why Pilates reformer classes help people with back injuries.”
This process is technically accurate. But it doesn’t capture the essence of creating commanding SEO content. It’s a piece of the puzzle – but it’s not [...]

Is your corporate ego messing up your SEO content?

A common SEO content marketing mantra is “Write for your reader.”
The challenge is, many companies have no idea what the heck that means. All they know is that they “should write lots of content.” Because “writing content helps get better Google rankings.”
Sure, the ranking benefits of SEO writing are important. I can’t deny that. But let’s pull SEO off the table for a second and ask the question…
Who are you writing for? Your ego? Or the people who can actually [...]