Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The changing face of social media and SEO

I have always had an eye for uncommon tactics and methods that might provide even the slightest advantage in any endeavor I pursue. I am competitive by nature, and analytical to the point of social awkwardness. This doesn't just apply to business and professional interests, but, to any challenge I've encountered throughout my life. If there was an edge to be garnered, even a slight one, I would always investigate and evaluate the extent to which these " outside the box " tactics could be put to use. That being the case ... I must confess, it appears, I didn't appreciate as early on as I should have the impending impact of social media or search engine optimization on marketing strategies in today's world!

In 1997 I don't think I'd ever heard the term " social media ", although I was beginning to grasp the concept. That was the year I, and a number of my friends, got our first pc's, and we really had no idea what to do with it! We could do research, email each other, trade pictures, join clubs, even shop a little if we wanted ... though relatively few did ( in my circle at least ). For the most part everything we did online was for entertainment. There were even a number of sites where one could find " Love " through online dating, and it was through a friends experience on one of these sites that I got my first glimpse of the marketing potential of the internet!

My friend had no girlfriend and was actively looking for one, he had signed up for several of the most popular dating sites and was quite optimistic that in no time someone would answer his ad, and that might be the start of something good! However after several weeks ... not one reply! By this time he had decided he needed to post a picture and that would make a difference ... so he posted a pic and waited... several weeks went by and still no reply! Now his confidence was sagging a bit, but, he didn't give up ... he went through and added more details about himself to the profile, one of the things he included was that he usually worked weekends doing drywall repairs and painting, within a few days he was talking to a number of gals ... and they all wanted him to come by and do some work for them! It was at this point that the power of social media first showed up on my radar. I was amazed at the results, and I saw the potential, but failed to follow up on making it work for me ... to this very day it perplexes me as to how I could have not recognized the internet was about to become a major marketplace!

So here we are in 2010 ... and social media rules the roost! Newspapers are scrambling to find their niche on the net, the folks who buy papers are looking for crossword puzzles and the cartoon section, not ads and coupons. The number of businesses buying space in the yellow pages is dropping rapidly as well. Today we get our info off our computers, even a 7 year old knows if you want to know the answer to something ... you " google it "! With every business in the world looking to reach their customers on the net the most important factor for drawing those clients to their door is often where they are positioned in the google rankings! Search engine optimization ( SEO ) is quickly becoming the determining factor in who will dominate local markets for the foreseeable future. The writing is on the wall and we can't afford to ignore it any longer, as business people we are going to have to adapt our approach to marketing or be left behind.

Yes I am For Hire!

Contact Rick Thomas at 239 896-7020


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