In today’s golden age of technology and dependence on the internet, it’s critical for brands to understand the power of a search. If you’re a consumer looking to find information, such as the best advice for a young entrepreneur, your first stop is going to be everyone’s friend, the search engine. Whether a Google devotee or a Bing enthusiast, your search engine is the most foolproof way to gather knowledge about a topic. Brands want to be the first name on the list of search results, as consumers are increasingly becoming more impatient and eager to continue on to their next to-do list item. Adding increased Search Engine Marketing, or SEM to your Marketing Strategy will help you stay afloat, and not get lost in the thousands of search results.
Forbes refers to SEM as “the practice of improving how customers find your product or service on a search engine through paid advertising”. Understanding how SEM works is an important step in order to best reach your audiences that are using search engines. Read about the benefits of SEM and the SEM hierarchy here.
A few new trends have impacted search marketing. They may affect the way a consumer finds your website. Become well-acquainted with these trends, and more importantly, know how they could develop in the future. This way, you boost your brand up to the top of the search results. Then, by doing so, your brand is in the minds of customers.
1. Meet Siri and Alexa, your new best friends
Voice-to-text features and voice searching continue to grow exponentially in popularity with the increase in accuracy the tools are gaining. Asking Siri, Apple’s assistant, or Alexa, Amazon’s voice, to search for something for you is utilizing the trend of voice search. How does this apply to you and your brand? Think about how you may tell a story to your friend. If you were to write that story out, would you change anything? Maybe you would realize there’s a different, better way to order the events of your story to make the most sense.
The point here is that people don’t talk the exact same way they type. They can sit longer and think about the right words they want to say when sitting in front of a keyboard. When talking, you say what’s on your mind in the way your brain first thinks to do so. Recognizing that Alexa and Siri are taking their consumers’ searches word-for-word from their voices may impact the way you utilize SEM. When establishing a strategy for your SEM, remember that natural speaking language and habits are increasing in popularity. Plus, you may think about simplifying the language you use to be the result a voice search user is looking for.
2. Video kills the Article Star
Research has shown that video and visual searches are preferred over long text responses. Consumers are becoming more connected to short-form videos. Videos that will get to the point and explain the topic in easy-to-comprehend, conversational language. This increase in video preferences is likely accredited to social media platforms like TikTok, Instagram, and Facebook. TikTok is a video-based platform that gives consumers the option to learn more information by visiting links or going to the new “TikTok Shop,” where customers can purchase what they’re seeing directly from the app.
Instagram and Facebook each have their own subpage for video content, dubbed “Reels” and “Watch,” respectively. Video lengths vary, but most last 60 seconds. Content creators dump as much information as possible in a short timeframe without overwhelming the consumer or overcomplicating the topic. How can your brand utilize this new preference? Consider slowly transferring over to a short video format in articles, advertisements, and web pages. Pair each video with short text that restates the question a consumer may be asking in regard to the material. Plus, add a brief summary of the answer to capture the attention of a searcher on their search engine. Then, let your video take it from there. Also, if you want to reach the kids, get on TikTok.
3. No need to fear, Artificial Intelligence is here.
AI is spreading like wildfire, and developing at lightning speed. Unlike what one may assume from watching SciFi movies, Artificial Intelligence is not something to fear. AI uses previous search results from its own search history, as well as large data sets and algorithms. It does this to provide the best, most accurate answers on any topic imaginable. Knowing the strengths and tools of AI can help you better your business, and in turn, how you use SEM. Don’t be afraid to use AI to gain information on your target audience. Also, use it for insights on popular searches relating to your product, service, or brand, and content optimization. Also, think about how you can use AI for your specific industry or category. Lastly, don’t forget that Artificial Intelligence cannot take away from the genuine and realness of the human experience. AI cannot completely replace human work.
Whether you’re a Top 100 company or a small business just branching your wings, Search Engine Marketing is imperative in order to reach the customers you’re looking for. Understanding how trends on the internet and the World Wide Web are evolving can help you stay above expectations and rise to success in search results, customer satisfaction, and your industry.