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Product Marketing Rule #19: Apply SEO Fundamentals Everywhere

Product Marketing Rule #19 from the best-selling book, 42 Rules of Product Marketing, was written by Eric Krock, Founder, AIDSvideos.org

When creating content for the web, you are writing for two audiences: the search engines that index the content and the people who read it.

If you’ve neglected to study SEO techniques or failed to consistently apply them, you’re in good company. When Bill Gates launched his personal blog, it had very basic SEO mistakes.

When creating content for the web, you are writing for two audiences: the search engines that index the content and the people who read it. Unless you please the search engines, you won’t reach the people. To ensure maximum reach for your content and maximum benefit for your organization, know and apply the fundamentals of search engine optimization (SEO)!

Identify your target keywords and key phrases.

You want your blog post, page, video, or slide deck to be returned in a high search result position when users search for these terms. Use the free Google Keyword Tool to determine which keywords users search for most frequently. Search for those keywords, and see which pages are returned and in what order. Study how your competitors have optimized their pages so you can be competitive. Consider targeting terms for which there is less competition and you have a better chance of ranking highly.

Use your target keywords repeatedly throughout your content

Put them in your: domain name, social media account names, blog, category, and tag names, web page and image file names, page title, H1-H3 elements, image file names and ALT text, first sentences of paragraphs, bullet items, strong and emphasized text, and the text of links between your own pages. Use the keywords consistently and repeatedly, but not so frequently that they annoy the human reader.

Create a good meta description for your page of 160 characters or less.

Although it won’t influence page rank directly, search engines may use this as the “snippet” describing your page. Good snippets increase clickthrough rates.

Put a blog post at a stable permalink URL.

Link to the post from your blog home page using its title as the link text and a handwritten summary to describe it.

Avoid having the same content at separate URLs within your site.

If identical content is at two separate URLs within your site, the pages will divide link equity between them, harming page rank, and only one will appear within search results. If your site design requires that the same content appear at multiple URLs (such as for different navigation paths or query sort parameters), specify a “canonical URL” so search engines know which URL should be considered “preferred.”

If you syndicate your blog posts, ensure that syndicated copies include a link back to the original copy.

Search engines will use this when consolidating search results.

If you put your trademark in your blog or web page title, put it at the end.

For example, use “Road Runner Trap 2.0 Released | Acme Widgets,” not “Acme Widgets: Road Runner Trap 2.0 Released.” This keeps the SEO focus on your target keyphrase “Road Runner Trap.”

Use the same techniques to SEO your online videos and slide decks.

Use your target keywords in your video and slide deck titles, descriptions, tags, playlist titles, playlist descriptions, playlist tags, and account profile. Include links back to your website in your descriptions and profile.

By applying these techniques, AIDSvideos.org attained over 2.5 million views for HIV/AIDS prevention education videos with no paid promotion. Organic views are earned views. Apply the SEO fundamentals and maximize your reach and impact!

Product Marketing Rule #18 from the best-selling book, 42 Rules of Product Marketing

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