How to create ideas that spread. How do you do this yourself or do you try some SEO outsourcing? We know, here at SEO Liverpool, the big challenge is coming up with the ideas.
We can look at what’s worked, but many successes don’t tie back to your business. As with all Search Engine Marketing, there are different ways to approach this. The Coke and Mentos case (one of the largest scaling virals) doesn’t get you to consume more of those products.
1) Thou shall know thy customer – find out what customers are looking for.
2) Thou shall be remarkable – about doing something different from what you’ve done before.
3) Thou shall try, try, again – most efforts don’t take off. Every try improves your chances.
Brainstorming the ideas:
Need to ask – what do customers love about you? In our case, small businesses like us because we have a small business. What do customers not like about you? Whats your biggest challenge? Address a problem like customer service.
What sparks online conversation? You must always be part of the conversation – important to be in the forums and social networks.
Can you do something outrageous like the Coke and Mentos and Will It Blend? Gets the marketing message across. Can you do something funny? Funny sells. Scary also tends to go viral.
Tie into holidays or events like the Olympics. You can find cool charts that show Twitter activity, with spikes. Great, see whats getting people to talk about online.
Can you get the most of something? Biggest this, etc.
What do you want people to say about your company? Can you get people to address this?
Create or embrace controversy? Can be dangerous.
Look at your analytics. See what sends people to your site. Not just traffic but engagement. How long are they spending on the site (Anyone involved in web SEO should be doing this!)
What motivates customers? Price? Service?
Look at your capabilities. Look at your budgets and limitations. Can you create and edit videos? Can you create and edit Flash games? Can you create and edit widgets? Do you have a skilled writer? Do you have a skilled researcher? Humorist? Do you have an email list or can you buy one? Can you partner with a non-profit?
Understanding campaign costs. If something is free, you must know if the ROI is sustainable. Starbucks got in trouble by canceling a free offer that went out of control. A competitor took advantage of that. Know your break even points.
Can you do this in house, or do you need to outsource this? Bring all this together to know your starting point.
Make it easy for people to spread content. Establish relationships. You need to be involved in the community. That’s the key. You lose that credibility of the pitch if you’ve never been heard of before.
Before pitching – aim for at least half of these:
1) Read at least 3 posts on their site.
2) Comment on one or two existing posts.
3) Write at least two sentences that are unique to the person pitching. Needs to be personal.
4) Have at least one other person read the email before you sending it.
5) Contact the blogger to share feedback before the pitch.
6) Keep track of which sites you pitch. Can get tough to manage a big campaign.
Must do’s before pitching:
1) Make sure your pitch addresses the person by NAME. Simple but few do it.
2) Make sure you have the right email address. Don’t send to firstname.lastname@example.org unless you are looking for the right email.
3) No mass emails! People will know.
4) Be transparent. Let them know who you work for.
5) Spell check your message.
6) Familiarise yourself with their readers. Read the comments.
7) Ask yourself in all honesty if the pitch is really relevant to readers.
8) Check to see if they have a policy about accepting pitches.
9) If you pitch multiple writers at the site, let them know in the text of the email.