Stand Out From the Noise: Millionaires, Porn Names and Other Brand Killers to Avoid
I'll admit - it's easy to get sucked in. You find yourself on a company website and there's a sidebar with a short list of headlines and links (this is an actual list)...
- "15 Ironic Pictures That Will Make You Snicker"
- "Fantasy Football: Who to Start and Who to Sit"
- "Three Ways to Become a Millionaire"
- "Top 10 Legendary Streaks in Sports"
- "Best Porn Names at The 2012 Olympics"
Before you know it, you've blown a few minutes clicking through to information that usually ends up being really disappointing. This type of content is designed for one thing: to be intriguing enough to get you to click-through, thus boosting a site’s search ranking and traffic. Increasing your search engine optimization (SE0) and building a high search ranking should be a top priority but, if this was your site, what do you think those links and that related content would say about your brand?
I don't know about you but, when I take the bait and follow a snappy headline to content that doesn't live up to its promise, I lose interest and faith in sites that practice this technique for pure search purposes while ignoring the quality of content. I also typically don’t come back.
On the flip-side, sites that provide links to content that is NOT a waste of my time – yes, I was in fact looking for “Building a Great Home Security System,” thank you - get points on my browsing scorecard and usually earn repeat visits.
The reality is that SEO and related strategies will continue to evolve and the algorithms used to determine effective search ranking have already been changed to give more "points" to sites that invest in content assets. No doubt many companies will continue to utilize dubious search strategies like the ones I’ve outlined but I for one will be glad when Google, Bing and Yahoo! get better at seeing through the porn names, get rich quick schemes and usual time-wasting pictures to serve up real, quality content.
In her role as VP of Content Marketing, Carolyn Strand brings years of experience matching marketing solutions to the challenges of some of the biggest brands in the financial services industry.