I get asked whether I do SEO, search engine optimization, by business owners and by agency owners all the time.
Search engines impact your business but creating content that gets search results is hard work.
When you realize how important search engines are in your inbound traffic, it can be terrifying.
What’s Inbound Traffic
In a store, inbound traffic are people who walk or drive by the store and decide to stop long enough to enter into your business. They might not be there to buy anything in particular. They might have come to your specifically to buy something.
In digital marketing, inbound traffic is anyone who takes some time to stop browsing the wide world of the internet and social media and spend time engaging with your content. You can pay someone to advertise online to bring you inbound traffic, but that can get very expensive.
Back in the day, you put an ad in a paper and anyone who looked at that paper sees your ad. Thus your paid advertising had a longer shelf-life in terms of bringing you traffic.
This video shows how newspaper ads tend to stick around. Nearly 30 years later the ads are still floating around.
The Problem With Search or Social Ads
A modern digital ad has a very short shelf life. You pay for someone to see it and/or click on that ad. Once they do, it is gone unless you pay for it to be seen again.
I have this happen all the time where I see an ad on search or social and then can’t find it a minute later.
So, not only do you have to pay a per person amount to get someone to engage with you, your ads disappear within seconds sometimes.
Paid digital ads are like the white rabbit’s hole from Alice in Wonderland: They just keep going and going. And your money keeps going down the hole unless you can somehow transfer your inbound ad traffic into inbound organic traffic.
The term organic is used for something that doesn’t require constant payments to keep going. If you put a cow out to pasture where there is adequate nutrition and water, that cow will keep going and growing. If you put a herd of cows out to pasture for a year not only will they survive, but you will have more cattle at the end of the year than you had going in.
That is Organic Traffic. That is Organic Marketing.
Organic marketing is when you do not have to pay for people to see your marketing. Through understanding your target market, you will produce content that your audience wants to talk about.
Right now, I am a goldmine for political candidates.
Why? Because I like talking about politics, so I see a post and share it so that I can add my commentary. It might have made me laugh, it might have made me angry, it might have made me think. But the important thing is that as soon as I share an ad on a social media platform and add my own voice to it, I remove that content from paid advertising and make it organic.
Then my friends discuss or argue with my commentary. And the organic traffic from that post grows.
This is what we want as small business owners.
We want people to engage with our content, for good and for bad. We want the right people to talk about it, debate it, laugh about it.
As they share it and their friends engage, we get organic digital traffic.
You can’t build a storefront in the perfect location online.
In order to get organic marketing in the physical world it’s location, location, location.
In order to get organic marketing in the digital world it’s audience, audience, audience.
Know your audience, write to them, and let them grow your business like a weed.