Despite the early myths, the internet is not a level playing field, where small businesses can compete on an equal footing with large corporations with a large in-house content marketing team. We believe that Panda and Penguin have actually increased the need for SEOs in industries where churning out enormous volumes of content is either impractical or simply not a viable option due to costs involved.
I'm not talking here about cheating or so-called ‘black hat' practices associated with a breed of SEOs that actually is dying out. In our experience, an experienced SEO professional can make small companies far more effective online. With less resources at their disposal, we believe that an even greater need for a no-frills SEO strategy exists.
Many of the content marketing and social media strategies require far more ongoing manpower than keyword research and the more traditional content writing and strategic link building that's been working well for quite some time. Google has not penalized legitimate, “ethical” SEO; only spammy, garbage links.
Take a month or two off content publishing and social media; your Klout score is likely to plummet, influence and the traffic that goes with it can evaporate surprisingly quickly. As one speaker at a recent Internet marketing convention put it, “Your content marketing success is unfortunately intrinsically linked with the content you put online last week.” Search engine rankings and the traffic they provide tend to be far more stable. We've had clients call us and ask to put their SEO programs on hold for 60 or 90 days due to the loss of a major client or another business upset. The impact on the short term was minimal. Traffic from content marketing dropped off, but search engines carried the day.
I alway recommend a balanced strategy that includes SEO components like keyword research and natural link building to quality pillar content we develop more gradually, in combination with content marketing initiatives like blogging, video and infographic marketing, and social media.
The alleged death of SEO has been grossly ‘overstated'. This has become a very controversial topic and I welcome your comments.