Posted by: dandelion4good | March 7, 2012

WHO NEEDS SEO? (Stating the Obvious)

In the Google age, how is possible that any marketers, managers, creative directors, writers, and website developers are not informed, at least about the importance, of Search Engine Optimization? Who does need to understand how to optimize a web site?

In four years of undergraduate study in Public Relations, Media Studies and Writing, SEO didn’t come up. In 2006 we were learning from industry veterans about all the ways they had executed communications plans, not how they would in the years after we graduated. How could they deprive us?!

For my creative, analytical mind… SEO is brain candy. If words like meta-tag and alt-text taste like brussel sprouts to you, hire people who know their SEO.

In five years of public relations work that extended at times into content development, digital communications and ad buying, no one ever asked me about their SEO ranking.

I have never hired a website developer, but the ones I’ve worked with were doing very little to optimize their clients’ websites.

I knew SEO was a thing and left it to the people who knew about it. But not very many people actually know what is meaningful about it or how to effectively manage it. I was one of the many until studying SEO at the University of Oregon’s School of Journalism and Communication at Turnbull in Portland, OR.

Building a website without an optimization strategy is like opening a storefront without a sign or address.  It won’t matter how shiny your salvaged pine floor, how large the front windows or how artful the lighting. No one will know where you are or what you’re selling in there.

Our dependence, as citizens and consumers, on search has become so great that we Google (as a verb) even our favorite web sites over and over again.

Integration of search and social media only muddies the waters, but makes their currents that more powerful.

SEO is an integral part of the communications and marketing mix. Any business owner, manager, communications professional or creative director needs to know it’s importance and essentially, what it is. It allows people to see the sign that tells people who you are and how to get to you.  If you are in business and have a website, you need an SEO strategy and your website developer, manager and content contributors or editors need to know what the strategy is.

Content planners and developers, writers and website developers need to know how to do it, at least in part.

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