SEO Tips for Creatives
Wedding professionals and creatives, I feel you! Writing for SEO can feel stifling, but let’s face this important truth and I promise we’ll get through it together…
It doesn’t matter how beautifully written your blog post is if it’s not optimized for your ideal client to find and read it.
In order for your blogging initiatives to be successful, your posts need to be just as much about pleasing search engines as they are about inspiring and educating your readers. This doesn’t mean your posts need to be bogged down with obvious keyword plugs, but in order for your post to do what it is intended to do on the front end, it needs just as much thoughtful detail invested behind the scenes.
Writing the post
Strategy: Take time to think about what makes you unique and build a blogging strategy around that. It’s your personal experiences and insight only you can offer which makes your posts unique and valuable. Try to make your blog posts follow this unifying idea so that they complement each other in some way. This makes it possible to link from one post to another to keep your readers engaged by offering more information on related topics.
Topic: As a general rule of thumb, avoid writing generic posts like “Best Ceremony Venues.” A quick Google search will tell you that thousands of others have already written on topics like this. The higher the competition level is on a topic, the lower your chances are of attracting attention. Dig deeper and instead, opt for location-specific posts like “Top 3 Most Elegant Wedding Venues in Charlotte, NC.”
Length: The longer, the better! A post shouldn’t be less than 500 words. 750 is a great goal, but if you think you can write as much as 1,500 words – go for it. And if you must choose between quantity or quality, definitely pick the latter. If you know you’re due for a blog post, but don’t have time to write one, wait. It’s better to distribute a thoughtfully written and optimized post than to slap something together just to avoid getting behind on your blog calendar. Posts that satisfy neither search engines nor your audience will do more harm than good.
Formatting: Make sure to separate your text into paragraphs. If you’re making an important point, bold that text so it stands out. But, use subheadings marked with H2 tags (don’t just bold them, use the <h2></h2> tag.) If you have a list – mark it with bullets. Search engines love bulleted lists, and so do readers as it helps break up important text.
Optimizing the post
Categories: Create relevant categories and categorize all your posts. Search engines love the structure of categories, and this will be helpful for your brides when searching for related content. For example, if you’re a photographer that services both Boston and Cape Cod, create the categories “Wedding photography in Boston” and “Wedding photography in Cape Cod” and assign all your inspiration and real wedding blog posts to their respective category.
Tags: Just like categories, you’ll want to use tags to further define your post, but not too many. Three to four tags per post should be enough to link similar posts together to help your audience find similar posts.
Internal links: It is extremely important that you link to your site from within the body text of your post. But, make sure to use a relevant keyword to link to. For example, as we work to build SEO for our team’s new Memphis Associate Wedding Planner, we would link our Memphis location page to a keyword such as “Memphis wedding planner” as it includes the location. Also, if appropriate, link to another related blog post (again, use a relevant anchor text). It’s okay to link to other websites if you want to, but keep your total number of links below five for longer posts and bellow three for shorter posts.
On-page properties: Try to write an engaging blog post title that will encourage your readers to click the link when they see it in SERP, (search engine results page) which is the results returned by a search engine in response to a search query. Make it interesting and think – what would I search for to find an article on this topic. Also, include at least one photo in your post and make sure to add ALT text.
Promoting the post
The hard work is over – now for the fun part! For optimal results, try to follow this philosophy – for every hour you spend writing the post, spend an equal amount of time distributing your content. At the very least, share your post with your social networks. Encourage your team to share them on their own social channels as well. Always include the link to make it as easy as possible for followers to find and read your posts – and when you can’t (like on Instagram), add a temporary link to your profile and let followers know they can go there to find it. Also, look for opportunities to share your post with your Facebook groups (like your local Tuesday’s Together group or The Rising Tide Society’s group). Google+ communities are also a great option, as well as your weekly or monthly newsletter.