Eric Swain opened the discussion telling us why social media will be more and more present in our lives and consequently why the companies cannot ignore this important communication channel. He showed us that social media creates communities of like-minded people who become the most important stakeholders for any business.
As a result, there must be a change in marketing strategy. In the past, companies shaped their strategy trying to impose their products on the market. Today, companies listen to customers, read blogs and participate in discussions on social media. This means that the strategy is now influenced more by the customers than by the companies.
In the future, companies and customers will be nearer than today and that’s an incredible advantage because talking with customers can quickly drive you to a better product. So, what a company should do is: listen, choose the strategy, implement and manage it and then measure to verify the success of the strategy.
There are many examples of success, from the shoes of Zappo’s to Mixcloud, Dropbox, and MagicSolver. All these companies based their success on the strong interaction with their employees or with their customers, paving the way for other companies
Next came Rob Chant, Cambridge Web Marketing Co., who chose not to talk about technology of SEO process, but to focus on the SEO mindset.
He highlighted 5 guidelines for companies in managing their SEO strategy.
- No rules. SEO is a fuzzy process. The game always changes and results can often be far from expectations. It’s impossible to find a rule that shows causality between the start of the process and its result. The first rule is to be always adaptive and flexible.
- Think like Google. To manage and steer the SEO process, you have to think like Google, which means giving structure to your information. If you succeed doing this, you can better assess SEO and Online Marketing Strategy. This leads us to the next point.
- Is content really king? Is filling up our page with tags the answer? Not Always! Quality content (and lots of it) is more important. Being at the top of results and then not meeting the expectations of your users can only be counterproductive.
- SEO is a process, not a one – off activity. Resources on the web increases continuously and Google is always hungry for new content and links coming in to a site. So you always need to be proactive and keep measuring performance while looking for new opportunities.
- Finally, avoid position fixation. Being at top of the search results should not be first goal. There are many opportunities available, such as local listing, videos, shopping search, and it’s always better working with a diverse range of keywords and tactics.
To conclude, and most importantly for startups, the cultural mindset to embrace social media is part of the basic DNA. It is not something that has to be adopted, as in large established companies, and this is a great advantage for startups.
P.S. If you want to see the videos of our past seminars, you can view them on our Vimeo channel.