Search Engine Land, a well-known online SEO publication, has an excellent article that summarizes the direction that SEO, or inbound marketing more generally, has gone in. And it couches the discussion in terms that should relate to you, as a business owner. The way the author puts it is, if you want to compete in a market characterized by falling price points, you’ll have to compete on other terms and that is to become the authority on the service or product you provide. And the way you accomplish this is through content marketing.
Your end goal is to sell, but to make sales you have to attract new patients or customers. But, ‘new patients or customers’ is a pretty ambiguous term, because that group of people is going to be very diverse. Some are going to be ready to make a purchase now, others might still be looking for new information, to educate themselves before making a purchasing decision. To become the authority on your product or service, you’re going to have to address the concerns of your new patient base, which will be as varied as their intentions. The solution is to create a suite of content around the topic, which is your product/service and the problem it solves.
Welcome to the world of topical optimization.
How the InfoSite Makes You the Authority
The best way to explain topical optimization is by way of example and our InfoSites are a great place to start.
Suppose you’re a prosthodontist and you want to attract new dental implant patients. You know that there are a lot of potential patients out there and they’re all going to be at different points of the decision-making process. Some may have already been told that they need to replace a tooth and they’ve settled on dental implants, so they’re looking for the right dentist. Others might want to replace a missing tooth, but they haven’t made a decision on what type of restoration to use and they’re looking for more information. These are two different search intents and your website should be ready to address them.
The InfoSites accomplish this by being a dedicated suite of content on a specific topic, which in our example is ‘dental implants.’ The reason we focus on a topic, rather than a keyword, is because we want the resource to be comprehensive — we want it to attract the entire range of potential dental implant patients by addressing the various motivations behind searching for information that falls under the topic’s umbrella.
Let’s use Dr. Munira Lokhandwala’s dental implant InfoSite as an example of how it uses topical authority to attract dental implant patients:
- To satisfy local patients who search for information on dental implants we have pages like “What are Dental Implants?,” which explains what they are, how they work, and what their benefits are. Maybe a patient already knows what they are and wants to know how they compare with other restoration treatments. They’ll land on the “Dental Implants v. Dentures and Bridges” page, then.
- Maybe they’ve already settled on dental implants as their treatment of choice, but they’re still not quite ready to schedule an appointment. They might instead want to research if they’re eligible for the treatment. For those patients, we offer an “Are You a Candidate?” page.
- Or, maybe the patient already knows she isn’t a candidate, but that she could be one if she were to solve her bone or gum loss issues first. We address her search intentions with a “Supplemental Procedures” page.
- Alternatively, the patient may already know she wants implants and that she is a candidate, but she wants to know how much they cost and whether she can afford them. We provide a “Cost and Financing” page — one that is treatment (topic) specific. And, similarly, for patients who are this point of the purchasing decision, we also offer treatment specific information on the doctor(s) and the staff, in the form of both “About Us” and “Testimonials” pages.
That’s a fraction of the content on a dental implants InfoSite. Apart from the other pages that are published along with the website, we blog on our client’s InfoSite’s on a regular basis to expand and evolve the content suite, making them competitive over the long-run. And it goes without saying that we often add new pages of content to respond to changes in the intent behind the searches made by potential pages. And all of this content revolves around the one topic, making the dentist the local authority on that topic.
InfoSites Are But One Example
The InfoSites are just one example of how we accomplish topical optimization. Recently, one of our clients asked to expand their emergency dentistry content and I was asked to put together a strategy. What I did was research how people search for emergency dentistry and the search queries they use, and then I thought about the intent behind those queries. What motivated them to make those searches? What were they looking for? And around the answers to those questions I built the strategy and the proposed suite of content.
If you’re looking to compete in your market, you need to think the same way. I know what your response is: you’re busy and your area of expertise is your business, not marketing. But, that’s why Now Media Group puts itself at your disposal. Take advantage and contact us.