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The Right (Key)Words to Romance Your Audience and Increase Your SOV

Giulianno Lopez

Content Marketing Manager @ AdRoll

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You can have the most engaging content in the world, but if you don't have the right keyword strategy behind it, no one will find it. Don't believe us? Approximately 91% of online content doesn’t get any traffic from Google — it may as well be invisible.

Just like in dating, your audience is looking for something specific. You wouldn’t put “enjoys light jogging” in your dating profile if you were looking for someone who shares your ardor for CrossFit — and the same goes for keywords. The keywords you use should align with what your ideal audience is searching for, and if you choose correctly, they can help shape your content strategy and boost your organic share of voice.

What Do They Google?

The first step towards using keywords to increase your organic share of voice is to get inside your customer's head and ask yourself what they're searching for when they find you (or your competitors) online. For example, you may describe your organic dog treats as “locally sourced, sustainable canine chews.” But if your target customer is searching for "organic dog treats", you're missing an opportunity for potential customers to find you.

Next, Google’s AdWords tool, which can help you discover trending keywords and get ideas for new content topics that will drive organic traffic.

Also, don’t discount the long-tail keywords, which are a combination of three or more words. You might find that your ideal audience is using very specific phrases or questions to find products like yours. For example: "how can I tell if dog treats are organic?"

Map Keywords to Intent

As you form a content strategy around these keywords, know that different types of content will appeal to visitors at points in the buying cycle. Visitors who use broad keywords (for example "dog treats") are generally higher in the funnel and just starting to research products. In order to capture the attention of these visitors, you can point them to a static page on your website that highlights some of your most popular products and their benefits.

Someone who searches for "what are the benefits of switching to organic dog treats?" is looking for very specific information and is likely further down the funnel. This visitor has a higher chance of conversion if they find the right content on your site that answers their question or solves their problem. In this instance, pointing them to a blog post that highlights the benefits of organic dog treats versus non-organic versions can help nudge them towards a purchasing decision.

Turning Keywords into Content

Now that you have keyword ideas and an idea of who’s looking for them, you can use them as the foundation to build out your content. This will help boost your search engine rankings, get your content in front of a wider audience, and increase your organic share of voice.

Remember: when your goal is to increase your overall organic share of voice, it's important to focus both on short-tail keywords and long-tail keywords. Short-tail keywords typically have a higher search volume and can bring in a larger audience, but tend to be more competitive. Long-tail keywords, on the other hand, usually have less search volume but are often less competitive and have stronger search intent.

Measuring Your SOV Success

Once you start creating content and pushing it out to your audience, you’ll want to continually measure your share of voice. Typically, share of voice is calculated by taking the number of mentions your brand receives, dividing it by the number of overall mentions within your industry and multiplying that number by 100. Media share of voice is simple because you can easily track the number of brand mentions in the media and divide by the total number of media mentions within your industry. For example, if there are 1,000 media stories about organic dog treats, and your company is featured in 25 times, your share of voice is 2.5%.

Tracking your organic share of voice is slightly more complicated because you need to track SOV for each keyword you're ranking (or trying to rank) for. To do that, you can create a simple spreadsheet that tracks:

  • Keyword
  • Your rank in search results
  • Estimated click-through rate (CTR) for that positioning (there are standard rules of thumb for estimating this)
  • Number of total searches for that keyword
  • Your number of visitors from that search
Formula: # of total searches / (# of total searches X CTR) = SOV

In simpler terms, your SOV will be your CTR, since that tells you how many people you reach based on your search rank and the total number of searches being performed for that keyword.

To calculate your total organic SOV across all keywords, you'll want to add up the total number of searches from all of your keywords and divide that number by the total number of your visitors from all of your keywords.

Formula: # of total visitors for all of your keywords / # of total searches for your keywords = Total Organic SOV

This metric will fluctuate over time, especially since it's tied to organic search rankings, which can dip when new search algorithms roll out or you make changes to your website. Ultimately, you want to see this number inch up month over month as your content starts to rank for more keywords and your search rankings increase.

Like with all new relationships, the first step toward gaining new customers is being found, and organic share of voice is your key to being found in organic search. It’s important to monitor and keep an eye on what your actual share of voice is, and pick keywords where you can be a breakout star instead of blending in with the rest of the pack. Remember — you have to stand out to be found, and you have to be found if you want to make this holiday season merry for your bottom line.

Are you interested in learning how to launch your very own holiday marketing campaign? Check out some of our other pieces of holiday-related content.

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