Goodbye SEO, Hello SCM: The Rise of Search Content Marketing

by Marcus Sheridan

New SEO

Some guy named Rand Fishkin recently said, “Delivering an exceptional experience and building a true web brand are now essential to long-term SEO success.”

Something tells me Rand was right ;-)

Something also tells me it’s time we moved to the next phase of SEO—one that manages to maintain best SEO practices post penguin/panda, but also delivers an exceptional experience through great content.

This is exactly why I feel Search Content Marketing (SCM)—the morphology of two digital marketing essentials—is a needed vernacular shift in this industry, as it better describes what some SEOs and content marketing companies are now (or at least should be) doing.

This Isn’t About Acronyms

Recently, while speaking at a conference in Dallas, a WordPress developer who was in the audience gave me one of the nicest compliments I’ve ever received. After my 1-hour talk, the gentleman came up to me and made a very simple statement:

“That was the best presentation on SEO I’ve ever seen.”

I don’t mention this compliment from the gentleman to brag, but rather to make a point—during my entire time speaking to this group of people, I never mentioned the phrase “SEO”  or “search engine optimization” one single time. Rather, I simply discussed the power of thinking like a consumer, being willing to address every single question they have on our website, and then using those questions to create a long tail keyword campaign that generates traffic, leads, and sales.

When I consider the essence of search content marketing, I see a fundamental belief in 3 things:

1. SEO is not the devil: That’s right, it’s not. Sure, there have been a lot of black hat digital scumbags that have done naughty things in the past to game the system, but SEO itself is not the enemy. Nor is it bad. How else are the search engines going to show their customers (you and me) great, relevant, and specific search results? This is also why anyone that says, “Don’t ever pay attention to SEO,” is a fool and needs to be shown the door, in my opinion :-)

Believe it or not, there are many “content marketers” out there right now that don’t pay attention to SEO, and really don’t even mention it to their clients when they are planning, analyzing, and executing a content marketing plan. I find this a bad practice, and it’s one of the reasons I think search content marketing needs to be another component of this conversation.

2. Content that doesn’t ever get read is essentially a failure: Let me ask you a question: If someone writes an article, and it never gets read, was it ever written in the first place?? Like the tree in the forest that didn’t fall because no one heard it, I say this because content, without readers, simply does not move the needle for a business.

For a huge portion of businesses out there, the main way their content gets read is through search engine inquiries. Yes, of course direct referrals, advertising, email, social media, and assignment selling play a big role in traffic generation as well, but organic search results are still the gatekeeper for a large majority of businesses.

3. Quality will be the most important aspect of digital content moving forward: Not that it needs be perfect, but with more and more industries becoming incredibly saturated in content, quality is and will always be the great divide between the masses of “producers” versus the few that are able to rise to the top.

Examples of Great Content Marketing Combined with SEO

This being said, I want to show you examples of what I think search content marketing is all about:

Infuionsoft vs HubSpot article

A clear keyword goal with loads of content value is the essence of Search Content Marketing

Why it Rocks from a Content Marketing Standpoint: This post was a doozy. It took over 10 hours to prepare (thanks Rich!) and was drafted multiple times. With 3,000 words, readers finally are able to see an in-depth review of two companies that are a constant topic of debate for many small businesses around the globe looking to jump into  the automated marketing software arena. In many ways, this post embodies everything Fishkin was speaking of in his opening statement of this post– delivering an exceptional user experience.

Infusionsoft article rankings

As you can see, this article after only two weeks has done quite well with search engine rankings.

Why it Rocks from an SEO standpoint: I’ve said it before and I’ll say it a million more times: “Versus” posts work. Readers love them. Search engines love them. And few companies have the guts to write them. But, if you do have guts, then you get search engine ranking results like you see in the image above.

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Block Imaging

Combining video with text while answering a GREAT consumer question is what it’s all about.

Why it Rocks from a Content Marketing Standpoint: I’m biased when it comes to the folks at Block Imaging, mainly because they were one of my first clients and have one of the best Chief Content Officers in the world in Krista Kotrla, but their company brand continues to skyrocket because they aren’t afraid to address questions consumers have—like cost and price—something that most companies are scared to death of and won’t do. Furthermore, this article is a great example of allowing visitors to consume information in a manner that suits them best, be it text or the embedded video from the company’s president, Josh Block.

Why it Rocks from a SEO Standpoint: Google “MRI Machine Cost” or “Price of MRI Machine” and you’ll quickly see why it rocks, and why it’s generates tons of traffic, leads, and sales for the company.

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Jay Baer Blogging ROI

If you read Convince and Convert often, you’ll see someone that always merges best SEO practices with incredible content.

Why it Rocks from a Content Marketing Standpoint: Few people are better online at search content marketing than Jay Baer. What’s interesting about Jay is that although he doesn’t talk about SEO very much, it runs through the guy’s veins, as is evident if you look at many of his blog titles. That being said, this article was powerful because it answered, and in a very clear, concise, and thoughtful manner, a question that bloggers, businesses, and marketers have all over the world, “How do you calculate the ROI of blogging?”

If you read this article, you’ll see why Jay is such a respected teacher, speaker, and thought-leader in this field, as he embodies the essence of great content marketing.

Why it Rocks from an SEO  Standpoint: Was Jay trying to be witty with that title? Nope, not at all. He went after a perfect long tail keyword phrase and scored an immediate touchdown. Just Google “calculate blogging ROI” to see what I’m talking about.

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Segue Tech

By simply thinking like your customer and answering their questions, you will have a great mix of content marketing and SEO, just as Segue Technologies shows in this post.

Why it Rocks from a Content Marketing Standpoint: One of my newest clients, Segue Technologies, specializes in developing mobile apps for a variety of businesses and needs. Knowing they are constantly asked about app compatibility with iOS, they wrote an excellent article addressing this common customer question—an article that can now be a part of their sales process going forward.

Why it Rocks from an SEO Standpoint: Although the long tail phrase that is this blog title might not be a prolific one in terms of the number of monthly searches it gets, it is certainly a question that companies are asking when going through the app development process. And because no other app developer has addressed this question so well, Segue ranks #1 on Google for the phrase.

Going Forward

I could literally go on and on showing examples of individuals and companies that are doing a great job combining SEO and content marketing, but I think you get my point.

Please understand with this post I’m not saying we should change the phrase “content marketing,” as content marketing is way more than writing blog articles and producing videos that are well optimized, as you can read in this article here.

But I am saying I think we need to start the process of changing the world’s mentality towards SEO. This starts with SEO companies integrating content marketing into the mix and helping their clients understand the days of keyword stuffing, silly URLs, and crappy inbound links schemes are quickly coming to a close and no longer have value. This doesn’t mean they forget their SEO roots and best practices, it just means they refine the old while embracing the new.

And the new, at least in my opinion, is Search Content Marketing.

Your Turn:

I would imagine many folks will disagree with this article, which is fine. That is why TSL is known to have one of the best comment sections on the entire web. Respectful disagreement is welcome in these parts.

That being said, do you feel SEO needs to evolve into SCM? Do you think I’m a fool for making such a suggestion? Jump in folks, it’s your turn to say what’s on your mind. :-)





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{ 57 comments… read them below or add one }

Lisa Gerber February 21, 2013 at 10:54 am

Whoa. I’m the first to comment? I dropped everything and jumped over here whe I saw your FB post because Brent Carnduff and I had a similar conversation a few weeks ago. He packages himself as an SEO and I don’t , yet everything I do for clients online is geared towards helping them get found.

S we discussed the pros and cons of labeling yourself as an SEO because like you said, SEO agencies have some obstacles to overcome when it comes to the perception of black hat practices.

Acronyms, semantics, and labels aside, we all need to be better with content. :)

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 5:26 pm

Lisa, great seeing you and so glad you took a sec to swing by.

Yeah, I too debate about including “SEO” in my service descriptions…but I think because it’s all some businesses “know,” then I’ll put it in the lingo.

Hope you’re doing great on your end Lisa :-)

Marcus

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Walt Goshert February 21, 2013 at 10:57 am

Marcus,

It’s viewing SEO as a strategy rather than a tactic.

It’s Investment Grade Content. It’s content as a long-term business asset.

SEOs promoting the old SEO of keyword stuffing, link building schemes, and other goofy stuff create a business expense.

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 5:12 pm

Well said Goshert, well said.

Hope your weekend is a great one sir!

Marcus

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Ruth Zive February 21, 2013 at 11:03 am

I’m sure it won’t surprise you Marcus that I absolutely, 100% agree. In fact, so much so, that I’m heaving a huge sigh of relief just reading this post.

Personally, I think that SEO companies need to reestablish themselves along these lines, or they are doomed.

So many of our clients (before engaging with us) outsourced web development to one person, social media management to another and SEO to yet another (as though each strategy can work magic all on its own).

Needless to say, at MarketingWise, we offer all of these supports under the same roof, because they can’t really have impact if they are not integrated thoughtfully.

I don’t really understand how SEO can be done without strategic content marketing insight. Just don’t get it…

Thank you for this post. Off to share it with EVERYONE!!

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 5:11 pm

Ruth, I do hope you show this post to all your clients, and then get their business, cuz you’re certainly doing it right!!

Thanks for all your support and keep doing GREAT things on your end :-)

Marcus

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Mike Huber February 21, 2013 at 11:33 am

Marcus,

Another great post! We believe that producing great content is one of the very best link building strategies. We’ve shown time after time that content that is compelling attracts links and links help generate traffic to your site. And, it doesn’t matter the content format. We are able to generate traffic and links through written content, videos and infographics. The key is, as you mention in your post, the content must be ‘quality’ content.

If you produce content that is interesting and it answers questions and concerns your customers have, then it will get read/viewed and most importantly shared.

I was able to attend one of your presentations in Phoenix at AZIMA and I would agree, your presentation was one of the best I’d seen on SEO. I think the industry is changing and moving from old tired SEO tactics to quality content.

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 5:10 pm

Hey Mike, great to see you and thanks for the kind words. That event out there for AZIMA was a great event.

Keep doing great work with your clients my friend,

Marcus

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Dan Bischoff February 21, 2013 at 11:59 am

Just listened to Danny Sullivan last night talk about SEO in front of a bunch of hard core SEO pros. At the end of it, my take was search marketers are scratching their heads a bit right now because what used to work isn’t working as well. A lot of them are focusing on crazy stuff like disavowing links, etc. But I think you nailed the solution here with SCM.

On a side note, I just checked and unfortunately, SCM.com and SearchContentMarketing.com are already taken.

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 5:08 pm

Hahahah Dan, I hadn’t thought about the URL man, that’s gave me a smile :-)

And yeah, lots of head scratching going on out there, especially regarding link “building”

Have a great weekend man,

Marcus

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Jason Miller February 21, 2013 at 12:54 pm

Nice post Marcus. I love the progressive thinking here. When you really take the time to research and craft a solid post such as the ones you mention above, these become living, breathing online resources that the search engines adore. In my opinion these are not the posts where you need a clever title (and that’s coming from a big fan of clever titles). Instead, what I do is literally take a page from David Ogilvy’s book when writing a headline; just get to the point and say what it does. As Google continues to award those with “natural” SEO links, it’s vital to have these meaty posts to anchor your entire blogging strategy.

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 5:06 pm

Jason, love your thinking man, and a nice point about the titles too. It’s amazing how much great optimization is thwarted by those clever titles that leave google scratching its head :-)

Appreciate your support and stopping by Jason,

Marcus

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Josh Block February 21, 2013 at 3:39 pm

Aww…shucks!

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Wesley Picotte February 21, 2013 at 3:55 pm

Marcus, I agree with every notion you put forward here, with a caveats…

While I agree that “SEO” doesn’t go far enough, “SCM” doesn’t either because while content helps a relevant site show up for that search, and by all rights is a primary driver, many elements of good old-fashioned SEO contribute, as well (e.g. site optimization).

What’s clear is that SEO no longer can live in a vacuum absent of other marketing practices. SEO tactics that Panda/Penguin mothballed actually enabled SEO to do just this for a long time. Now–and I’m sure this goes without saying for your audience–social, content and search…and user experience, brand communication, PR, etc.–need to integrate for real visibility to result.

Bottom line, SEOs, SCMs, whatever, now must think and act like marketers to be successful. My two cents. Thanks for the thoughtful post.

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 5:04 pm

Wesley, easily one of the best comments of the strand here man. Love your underlying point—time to get back to marketing, not shortcuts.

Have a great weekend,

Marcus

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Gail M February 25, 2013 at 8:48 am

Wesley, great to read your comment. Having worked in search for almost 6 years I have watched great content and well placed content work well for clients – pre and post the panda / penguin updates.

It seems as though copy writers now believe that on their own they can create that same visibility a fully optimised campaign used to deliver.

Content needs amplification, it needs back links – it needs an audience and an integrated approach is the best way to do this. Mixing SEO skills, good writing and marketing creativitity is the way forward.

New titles keep the conversation going but traditional, creative marketing is back in fashion, it just integrates a lot more electronic mediums into the marketing mix.

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Ryan Aspy February 21, 2013 at 4:09 pm

What a timely post. Just yesterday I was having a conversation with a gentleman who’s been retired for about 10 years. He overheard me use the term “content marketing,” and he asked me to explain what I meant by that. Back in 1995 he was a marketing executive for a major company and had been given the assignment to usher them into the internet age. After a few minutes of me explaining what I meant by “content marketing” he stopped me and asked: “aren’t you just describing an optimized process of SEO?” I thought his question was interesting. It showed he was starting to get it, but SEO was the term he was comfortable with. When he left the game, content marketing wasn’t really being discussed like it is today.

Marcus – In my opinion your article highlights the fact that content marketing is continuing to evolve as a discipline. All the more reason for companies to have highly skilled and dedicated Chief Content Officers to navigate these waters.

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 5:02 pm

I hear you big dog. And what an interesting conversation. Sounds like your friend “got it” even though he’s an old-timer.

And yeah, the need of having a great CCO is only going to heighten in the coming years…at a very fast rate.

Thanks for dropping by bud, talk soon.

Marcus

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karen kouf February 21, 2013 at 5:28 pm

So great to read post that takes a fresh stance and provides cases to back it up. I’ve been in publishing and search for years, so nice to see best practice and the good guys rising to the top. Thanks!

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 5:00 pm

That’s always the goal Karen–a good read with plenty to back it up.

So glad you stopped by :-)

Marcus

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Jeremy Abel February 21, 2013 at 7:01 pm

Hi Marcus,

Great topic and excellent perspective- timely and forward-thinking. I completely agree that search and content are merging forces to accelerate business objectives by not only sending more traffic to websites, but more qualified traffic.

With the SCM approach, great content can ignite a website’s SEO value, while the resulting expanded presence in the SERPs can ignite visibility of great content- it’s a win-win approach that helps businesses with a strong content arsenal boost their position as an authority in their niche while getting found by qualified visitors… If that’s not a key objective of marketing then I don’t know what marketing is.

A large part of what today’s SEO stands for must include the fundamentals of SCM (I think the term for this type of SEO is called “white hat”? haha). It represents the building blocks for long-term value in the eyes of humans and search engines alike- two parties most businesses need to survive.

You nailed it Marcus- here’s an article we’ll be referencing for years to come…

Keep changing lives,

Jeremy

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 4:58 pm

Jeremy, you’re too kind bud, but thank you, I do appreciate it.

And your comment here was money man. If only everone shared your mindset.

Hope your weekend is a great one bud,

Marcus

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Jon Loomer February 21, 2013 at 7:06 pm

Great stuff as always, Marcus. I like the idea of changing the way we view (what was formerly known as) SEO. It needs an image change. A makeover.

I never mention SEO. I don’t consider myself an SEO guy. But I write to answer questions, thinking about what people will be searching for. And the results speak for themselves.

Then again, I learned from the best (that’s you, dummy!).

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iGoByDoc February 21, 2013 at 11:15 pm

Marcus, Marcus, Marcus,

I love where you are going here man. And congratulations on creating yet another term to confuse the marketplace. I say that with much love of course, and bit tongue-in-cheek.

When it comes to SEO, maybe we change the meaning of that to Search Experience Optimization? Haha – But at the end of the day, does it not just come down to common sense kick-ass marketing? (whoever defines that).

There are just too many words to describe this industry now, and it just gets more and more confusing for the client. I like where you are going with this though. I am all for anything that helps make what we do more understandable.

Have a great night man!

Doc

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 4:55 pm

Doc, love your passion man. And yeah, there are certainly a lot of dang words out there being thrown around, and it’s confusing to a lot of people. But I think that’s also natural for a nascent industry, and I suspect much of this dust will clear in the coming months/years.

Keep up the great work man and thanks for stopping by,

Marcus

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Scott Ayres February 22, 2013 at 1:18 am

Great points.. I think many of us that provide content and are active in social media tend to blow off SEO because it’s overly confusing. But it’s such a vital part of obtaining new readers and customers..

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Miroslav Ivanov February 22, 2013 at 7:19 am

I must fully agree, that SCM is the future. If you constantly create great content, build community of readers and so on, sooner or later you will dominate the market.

But I’m an SEO and I have clients. My clients need results, I deliver them, but I want to achieve more for them. For example one of my clients is cleaning services company from London. Me and my team are striving to produce fresh content almost every day, but what is the use of it, if nobody reads it?

And nobody reads it, for sure.

Frankly, who subscribes for cleaning services blog? And there are so many other niches, that suffer from lack of interest in reading and following. So at the end of the day we write only for the Search Engines. In cases like this (and there are many) the SCM turns into Content Conveyer. Yes this surely helps to achieve great rankings, but it’s not what real Brand and Business Development should be – building brand, influence people, making them come back again and again.

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 4:53 pm

Yes, a cleaning service in London may be a tough one to consistenly blog–but I think if the blog is used to create videos of “this is how we do what we do,” and then those articles are sent out to potential clients, at least they’ll act as a great social proof.

Thanks,

Marcus

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Marshall Ponzi February 22, 2013 at 9:53 am

Thanks again, Marcus. I worked many years as an architect, and this post made prompted an analogy.

In every building we designed, plumbing was a critical part of the infrastructure, much like SEO is critical to web marketing infrastructure.

But as design consultants, we never sold ourselves as great plumbing designers. We sold the quality of the overall design. Plumbing was merely part of the whole package. It was there and was quietly expected work properly. No plumbing, no building.

In building design, plumbing is a big deal. It just never leads the design conversation. Piping must be installed efficiently so it doesn’t interfere with the design. Water pipes must deliver good water pressure; waste pipes must pitch properly to drain sludge out of the building. Sounds simple, but it requires attention by people who know what they’re doing.

I see the role of SEO similarly. It’s an integral part of a marketing strategy, but it doesn’t drive the “design.” SEO is like “piping” that gets your message to flow out to the right places. But if your content is bad “water” in the first place, there’s no point in piping it.

Focus on the design (content), then make it flow (optimize).

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 4:51 pm

LOVE the analogy Marshall, well said!

Marcus

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Andrea T.H.W. February 22, 2013 at 12:20 pm

The only thing worse than SEO is having to be social, imho. But it seems that it’s nevertheless something we have to do. Up to a certain point.

People will always search through keywords because that’s the way the human being communicates, using words; so search engines will always be the tool to be found on the net even if how they will do it is pretty open. Using social serach for example is the next golden mine but no one knows how to mix social with reliability and relevancy. Taking into account only the social thing the first result should always be Justin Bieber or Kim Kardashian. :)

Clearly the social share of content plays its role measuring the quality of content but it’s not the only thing to consider, SEO at least as regards keywords will always win.

Or search engines could just do what Big. G. does and always put top dogs with big wallets first.

Luckily with time SEO is becoming simple and many theories about it have been abandoned, as will happen with the social thing. Content and interaction imho come always first.

Anyway we’ll see given that things chage every day, but keywords and content will always be what matters, unless Google decides not anymore. :)

Until Google will be thrown away by someone else as they did with Yahoo, story repeats itself especially when money and monopoly are the only things cared about. But keywords and url will always rule.

Great article Marcus, have a great weekend!

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 4:47 pm

Andrea, rock on man. I think you’re right. Google is the gatekeeper, and social is the mystery. It’s the digital wild west, and who knows how the dust will settle.

Cheers bud,
Marcus

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Andrea T.H.W. February 23, 2013 at 2:02 am

Well, let’s hope we will be still standing when the dust settle. :D

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Alexandra Coroian February 26, 2013 at 6:24 am

Finally, the talk has gone back to content. We’ve lived (and, for some parts, continue to live) in a world of too many schemes that lead to nothing on a long term. Too tired from trying to outrun others on Google, how many will
have the strength to actually create great content, to finish the race? That’s a good point for skilled runners and by that I mean, writers :)

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Andrea T.H.W. February 27, 2013 at 4:44 am

Hi Alexandra, I surely agree with you. Google aims at being the ruler of the net and makes things pretty difficult even for good writers but aiming to provide good content pays on the long run, whatever Google thinks about it.

Given that story repeats itself Goggle will go the way of Yahoo so for now is the big player but in the future things will change. What will remain will be content and interactions with similar bloggers. ;)

Funny that Google itself is the one which inspires such schemes and then slays them later.

But your point is surely right, if we have to be social at all costs to obey the last Google rules how much time is left to write? Unless we all go to Fiverr? :D

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Matt Southern February 22, 2013 at 3:58 pm

I think everyone who works in the SEO and content marketing industry understands and agrees with what you’re saying. Now it’s about getting business owners to understand it.

It’s hard to convince the average business owner that great rankings in search results requires a dedicated commitment to producing content. A lot of them believe all that’s involved is some technical wizardry and bam, they’re on the first page of Google.

There’s obviously a lot more to it than that but it will take time for people to open their eyes to it.

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Marcus Sheridan February 22, 2013 at 4:44 pm

No doubt Matt, this won’t happen overnight…we’ve got a lot of work to do ;-)

Appreciate you stopping by,

Marcus

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copperwebs February 22, 2013 at 7:26 pm

Versus posts? Hmm. I always thought it was the number type posts that everyone loved. At least, that’s what everyone pushes, and they do well. I’ll have to think about coming up with a versus post, because that is just too interesting to pass up.

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Jim February 22, 2013 at 10:03 pm

Some great examples. Once again you are echoing my thoughts of late. Ultimately, SEO has always been about the content. Yes, over the years people have gamed the system but as Google catches up, one by one they fall by the wayside.

I started in this as a writer who wanted to blog and make a living from my writing. I learned SEO as an extension of the content I wrote. For too long “SEO” has worked the other way around. The content wasn’t the priority and often came in way down the list. Content quantity over quality won the game.

Nothing like seeing something I wrote published on another website under another person’s name coming up above me in the search engine rankings because they bought a ton of cheap links or via some other cheap method? It is those same SEO’s who now scream the loudest.

Now, SEO is finally about figuring out what the target audience wants, determining a niche within that demand where there is opportunity and capitalizing on that opportunity with quality content.

Finally, it takes quality to succeed. I welcome it with open arms–SEO, SCM, Content Marketing, call it what you will.

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saravanan February 22, 2013 at 11:44 pm

Every one focus on content! This has to be followed and people have started following it, but the thing is that you have written a beautiful marketing content. can’t you see i’m shedding tears.

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Tristan February 23, 2013 at 1:20 pm

Companies should be aware of this strategy not only because it is effective but because older SEO methods simply do not provide a respectable online presence for businesses.

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Amber-Lee Dibble February 23, 2013 at 2:02 pm

Hey Marcus!
Yeah. I’m back. I just had my third birthday!! Can you believe it has already been 3 years?

And I am still confused about SEO.

Ok. Maybe not SEO, but I do have a question for you (and hopefully it will be easy to answer).

The “keywords” that are included in the “Code” of my website. Do I need them? How do I find them? How can I add to or change them? Do they matter?

Ok, so that was four questions. But I am sure you’ve missed me…. right? :) Please help me understand this. Because I am writing, it is working… but I still feel like there is too much (not so much anymore, just too much) I still don’t understand.

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Jared February 23, 2013 at 8:40 pm

Love the idea of SCM. I think creating quality content that people will want to share is where we are going.

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Sarah Kohl February 24, 2013 at 11:43 am

Marcus,
Another excellent post about what should be common sense. As we try to build trust in the on-line world, speaking naturally about topics of interest to our clients is likely to be the best way to garner trust (and searchability). After all, follow the golden rule, treat others as you would yourself.

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Geoff Stock February 24, 2013 at 8:29 pm

Love the article Marcus. When I started to try to get people to my site I wrote articles that would be of interest to my market. I shared that info to a number of places so people could find it. Did the normal sensible stuff you are talking about and calling SCM. When Penguin hit I immediately went to 4 top positions on page 1 for my keywords. Didn’t hurt me one bit. It isn’t rocket science but it does take time, good content and consistency to get the results. I agree 100% with what you are saying here, but I think good SEO should already be using SCM. I will certainly be using some of your ideas in upcoming posts, thanks. Geoff

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Hector Avellaneda February 25, 2013 at 10:56 pm

Yo Marcus! What’s going on brother. First and foremost I just have to say this was an awesome post.

I dont disagree, in fact, I’ve always had this perception that you were not much of an SEO kind of guy and were more concerned with that actual relevance, quality and targeted nature of content. I’ve seen what it’s done for you over the years and what it’s meant for your business. You’re living proof that it works, man!

Sure, a little SEO here and there is not bad but SEO only guarantees that customers will pass through your ‘store-front’. SCM is what brings them in!

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Adil February 27, 2013 at 5:02 am

Nice ideas and argument Marcus Sheridan.

I am agreeing with your points. I will restrict my argument to the fact that due to the crappy work of average SEO company this thing is seen with bad eye. So it’s better to adopt new term CSM. :)

However there is one good thing with CSM that term “Marketing” lets content writers think about the marketability of the content which leads to caring about the customer/reader.

Thanks

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Marcus Sheridan February 27, 2013 at 8:44 am

Well said Adil, and that is certainly the goal :-)

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Kashif February 28, 2013 at 9:37 am

So is it Google vs your-social-media-followers? Correct me if I’m wrong, but your argument gives an impression that search content marketing is to tempt Google (or other SEs) to rank you higher for a particular keyword / phrase. How white-hat is that from link building? Or is that Link Building 2.0? :)

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Marcus Sheridan March 4, 2013 at 9:18 am

Tempting a search engine to rank you because you follow all the best SEO and Content Marketing practices in the book is everything the search engines have asked us to do Kashif…Of course everything I write is meant to tempt search engines to rank it. That’s the way it should be IMO.

Appreciate you stopping by,

Marcus

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Dave LeBlanc February 28, 2013 at 10:04 am

Good article and it set off a lot of ideas for me to present to my clients. Thanks for posting this!

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Jo Hu June 18, 2013 at 12:29 am

very informative. as a newbie in SEO, I’ve got a lot to learn from pros like you. thanks for sharing. drop by http://www.aplus.net.nz, I think this is also a good one

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aplusseo July 24, 2013 at 3:25 am

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seo services October 18, 2013 at 8:39 pm

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endurance and stamina products December 29, 2013 at 3:22 am

Hi! This is kind of off topic but I need some help from an
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Kevin Carney July 7, 2014 at 1:11 pm

Very valid points! SEO marketing, local or otherwise, requires regular and consistent publishing as THE baseline activity.

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