How (good) SEO copywriting helps people like you online

Let me put it out there right now: I used to hate Crocs.

Actually, Crocs (and their ugly footwear twin, Vibram Five-Fingered Shoes) are one of the few things my husband and I used to argue about. Every time he’d put on his Crocs, or his Vibrams (which have been described by his co-workers as “creepy toe shoes”) I’d encourage other shoe choices. Or going barefoot. ANYTHING but the Crocs.

Confession time: I don’t think that the (cuter) Crocs are that bad. And I even have a pair of Vibrams (and there is photographic evidence of me wearing them, too.) Why did I have such a fashion-backwards change of heart? Turns out, by being “everywhere” Crocs and Vibrams actually seem more attractive.

Let’s talk about why that is.

In the book Buyology, Martin Lindstrom discusses how “mirror neurons” influence our buying decisions by making us mimic other people’s buying behavior (and yes, he used Crocs as an example.) If we see cool, sexy people wearing Crocs, our unconscious minds go into overdrive. We think, “Maybe if I wear Crocs, I’ll look cool and sexy too.” And suddenly, what seemed like an unthinkable purchase (Really…Crocs?  Really?) now because a must-buy. As Lindstrom says, “Just seeing a certain product over and over makes it more desirable.”

And this got me thinking about SEO copywriting and how good writing can make a company seem more “desirable.”

Today, companies have multiple online content marketing channels. You can create a video. You can send out snappy tweets. You can distribute a newsletter, write a white paper – or heck, even optimize your site content for better rankings. All of these channels allow you to be “found” a different way.

Now imagine, a prospect who is looking for a product or service like yours. Maybe they see one of your brilliant tweets, which causes them to investigate your company. Then, they see an article your CEO has written. Then, they find your company in the search results. Once they reach your site, they watch your video and sign up for your newsletter.

The cool thing is, in this scenario where your content is everywhere, your prospect is being encouraged to “like” you a little bit more. Your company seems more desirable.  The psychological concept of “familiarly fosters likability” states that we tend to like people (or companies), when we are continually exposed to them (this only applies if the information is useful and provides value.) So, to a prospect, your informative tweets, how-to white paper and newsletter would be highly valuable information – and every time they “see” your company again, the prospect is reminded, “Hey, I know these guys. I like these guys. I should read this.”

(At the same time, if your content is crap and your tweets are more sales-focused than sharp, you’ll actually turn off your readers.)

In terms of a SEO content development play, it means that the more places your (quality) content can “live” online, the better.  In a brilliant blog post by Dr. Rachna Jain, she explains,”this means you should syndicate your content widely and be out in front of your target audience every chance you get. As people see you “everywhere,”they start to pay more attention. And as they pay more attention, you become more familiar.”

What does this mean to your company? Two things:

  • Quality content is key. Although it’s tempting to kick out low-quality articles just to get search rankings in your virtual door, resist the urge.
  • Just because you’re everywhere doesn’t mean people will like you (hello, Jesse James.) They’ll only like you if you give good content.

NOW is the time for a SEO content development strategy. Not later. Not when you have time. But NOW. If you know that folks are clamoring for content that helps solve a problem – and they’ll “like” your company the more that they’re exposed to your content, isn’t it time to get moving?

Good content is more than just “search engine fodder.” It’s about ensuring that your prospects see your brand when they are searching for a solution to their specific problem. The more your company is “out there” with compelling, problem-solving content, the more positively you’ll be perceived…

…Now, if you excuse me, I have some Vibrams to put on…