Learn
Learn
Close

They Ask, You Answer

A revolutionary approach to inbound sales, content marketing, and today’s digital consumer.

Learn MoreLearn More

Free Courses in IMPACT+

Dozens of sales, marketing, and content courses inside IMPACT+. Start learning now.

See all coursesSee all courses
Events
Events
Close
IMPACT+ Membership
IMPACT+ Membership
Close
Coaching & Implementation Services
Coaching & Implementation Services
Close

Services Overview

See how you can dramatically increase your inbound leads and sales.

Services Overview

Digital Sales and Marketing Mastery

Fast track your team’s success with IMPACT's most popular service.

Digital Sales and Marketing Mastery

Web Design

Launch a beautiful website that consistently generates leads and revenue.

Web Design

Virtual Sales Training

Equip your sales team with comprehensive training designed to help them close more deals in today's virtual-first world.

Virtual Sales Training

HubSpot Training & Implementation

Train your company to take ownership of HubSpot and get the most out of your investment.

HubSpot Training & Implementation

Case Studies

See dozens of examples of companies succeeding with Digital Sales and Marketing Mastery and They Ask, You Answer.

Case Studies
Become a Coach
Become a Coach
Close

The Most Common Business Blogging and SEO Mistake in the World

The Most Common Business Blogging and SEO Mistake in the World Blog Feature

Marcus Sheridan

Keynote Speaker, Author & Partner, Author of ’They Ask You Answer”, Presented 250+ Sales, Marketing, & Communication Workshops Worldwide

December 3rd, 2011 min read

Over the past week, because of my guest post on Social Media Examiner and due to the increased traffic at my former company, The Sales Lion, I had the opportunity to look at 28 business blogs that are doing their best to embrace this thing we call Content Marketing.

Yet out of these 28, I’d say 26 are making the same mistake again and again and again. In fact, because I keep writing the same diagnosis to business owners I figured I should start using my brain and simply write a post on the subject….Hence, an unexpected blog article on a Saturday afternoon.

It All Comes Down to Goals

But let me just cut to the chase by making this critical statement, one I earnestly hope you will take to heart for your business’ blog from today forward:

If you don't have a keyword phrase goal for every blog post you ever write, you're missing the boat.

In other words, if I looked at your company's last 10 blog posts, from the title of the posts alone, could I clearly tell what your target keyword goal was for that post?

Yep, that’s the magical question, the one that 26 out of 28 blogs this past week clearly cannot answer.

People constantly send me emails wondering why they are getting little traffic with their blog posts. Usually, within seconds of looking at their writings, the problems jump off the page.

The Problem with Terrible Post Titles

Although there are some core SEO problems that most folks suffer from, terrible post titles takes the cake again and again and again.

There is a little debate as to whether or not blog titles should be more ‘witty’ (written to attract readers) or more ‘SEO oriented’ (written to attract the search engines).

I submit that it’s usually possible to achieve both, but for over 99% of all blogs in this world that have very few subscribers, SEO in the title should be the first priority. The reason for this is simple—SEO is the gift that keeps on giving. When you rank on the first page of Google for a particular keyword phrase, the new business and customers that can come from that one post can literally last for years to come. (I’ve experienced this many, many times.)

This is why most folks need to quit with the witty titles that make no SEO sense and start enriching said titles with a keyword phrase, preferably one of the long-tail.

For example, here is a really dumb blog title:

"The Big Secret Your Pool Guy is Not Telling You"

(As you might imagine, no one is typing in Google the keyword phrase "big secrets from pool guys."

Now take the same blog post, and change the title to:

"The Most Egregious Fiberglass Pool Warranty I’ve Ever Seen"

The second title is not only keyword rich (fiberglass pool warranty), but it’s very attractive to readers as well. (It also ranks on the first page of Google for the phrase, as it's an article on my swimming pool site.)

Real Life Examples: Can You Guess the Keyword Goals?

Let me show you some real life examples of what I’m talking about here. Although I don’t always write titles for SEO, many do have a keyword goal. With my swimming pool company, EVERY article has a keyword goal.

I’m going to show you a blog post, and see if you can guess what the targeted keyword phrases were with each (before I tell you the answer below each image).

Keyword Goals: 'HubSpot Reviews' (#3 on Google Currently), 'HubSpot Customer Reviews' (#5 Google Currently)

Keyword Goals: 'Blog Headers' (#3 on Google Currently) 'Best Blog Headers' (#3 Google) 'Blog Headers Designs' (#2 Google)

video marketing tips

Keyword Goals: 'Small Business Video Marketing Tips' (Currently #1 on Google)

Keyword Goals: 'Fiberglass Swimming Pool Problems' (#1 Google), 'Fiberglass Pool Problems' (#1 Google)

Keyword Goals: 'Inbound Pool Cost' (#3  Google), 'Above Ground Pool Cost' (#3 Google), 'How much do Inground Pools Cost?' (#1 Google), 'How much do above ground pools cost?' (#1 Google)

State Your Keyword Goals and Watch the Results Follow

Hopefully, as you looked at each one of these blog titles, the keyword goal(s) of each became immediately obvious. This is exactly how it should be for your company blog. Remember, the key is that you always have a clear goal. Once you establish this one little habit, you'll notice your organic search visit traffic will start to go up and you'll rank for more and more keywords with each post.

Your Turn

How do you decide on your blog post titles? Is SEO something you think about and do you have a keyword goal(s) for each article? And if you're not getting much traction with your blog and its SEO, just write down the url in the comments below and I'll be happy to respond with a few suggestions in my reply.

Note****Most companies and bloggers don't share articles like this one because it 'gives away their secrets'. Frankly, I find this ridiculous. The fact that I've been so open about every success strategy I've ever had is likely the #1 reason folks trust me to guide their business when it comes to creating content for SEO, branding, and sales.

Want to learn more about digital sales and marketing?

Master digital sales and marketing when you join IMPACT+ for FREE. Gain instant access to exclusive courses and keynotes taught by Marcus Sheridan, Brian Halligan, Liz Moorehead, Ann Handley, David Cancel, Carina Duffy, Zach Basner, and more.

Sign up for free
Take a peek

Access hundreds of FREE courses and keynotes

Free Course
Digital Sales & Marketing Framework for Today’s Buyers
By: Marcus Sheridan
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
A New Way to Compete & Win
By: Brian Halligan
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Virtual Keynote
How To Genuinely Feel Confident, Be Likable, And Build Trust On Camera
By: Liz Moorehead
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
The Future of Marketing is Conversational​
By: David Cancel
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Deep Dive
HubSpot On a Budget: Getting Started with HubSpot Starter Hubs
By: Courtney Caldwell
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Assignment Selling: Content is Your Greatest Sales Tool
By: Marcus Sheridan
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
The Big, Bold, Brave New World of Marketing​
By: Ann Handley
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Investing in Incredible Digital Sales and Marketing Results
By: Chris Duprey
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
How To Show Your Content Makes Money With HubSpot Marketing and Sales Hubs
By: Liz Moorehead
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Virtual Keynote
The Visual Sale
By: Marcus Sheridan & Tyler Lessard
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
Marketing Tech: What’s Now, What’s Near and What’s Not Anytime Soon?​
By: Dharmesh Shah
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Inbound Lead Generation & Conversion Optimization
By: Carina Duffy
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Virtual Keynote
Fundamentals of Videography: You Can Be a Great Videographer Too
By: Zach Basner
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Deep Dive
The Ultimate Customer Service Toolkit for Any Budget
By: Andriti Gulati
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
6 Topics Subject Matter Experts Need to Address
By: Kevin Phillips
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
Fanocracy: The Power of Making Business Personal​
By: David Meerman Scott
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
The Power of Pillar Content
By: Liz Moorehead
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
SEO for the Future
By: Franco Valentino
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Fundamentals of Social Media Marketing
By: Stephanie Baiocchi
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Deep Dive
A Practical Guide To Video Graphics
By: Colton Trcic
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Session
How To Get Your Community To Know, Like, And Trust You With Video
By: Marki Lemons Rhyal
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Video Sales and Marketing Strategy
By: Zach Basner
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Here Are Some Related Articles You May Find Interesting

Want to Contribute Content to impactplus.com? Click Here.

IMPACT+ Sign Up
A FREE online learning community with on-demand courses, hundreds of expert-led sessions, thousands of your peers ready to support you, and much more.
Check it out
Hundreds of courses and recorded keynotes, completely FREE
Check it out
Access hundreds of digital sales and marketing courses and recorded keynotes, completely FREE