Did you know that they talk about your content in the Bible? Really.
“No one, after lighting a lamp, puts it away in a cellar nor under a basket, but on the lampstand, so that those who enter may see the light.” -Luke, 11:33
When you hire a writer to tell your story, do you want to hide it under this metaphorical basket? Of course not, but you should hire a writer who will run it through your keyword basket so that those who enter your website may see the light (and find your story).
Your keyword basket is the list of words and phrases people enter to search engines when researching your products and services.
The keyword basket inside your content
If you don’t have a keyword basket, hurry up and get one. I won’t go into all of the science behind this, but sites like MarketingProfs.com can point you to reliable keyword research tools. Many tools are free, and you can spend an idle afternoon getting a yen for how prospects might look for you on the web. Once you know the words and phrases they use, you can begin to build a basket of them.
If you do have a keyword basket, share it with your writer. You do not want your content artificially jam-packed with these keywords, because the resulting copy will appear awkward and forced. However, a good writer knows that and will sprinkle the keywords prudently throughout your case studies, white papers, web content and blog posts.
Be sure to hire writers who are amenable to this practice. If they balk, or if there is no easy way to work keywords into the text, then consider the other important use for keywords.
Keywords for outside your content
Use keywords when you create metadata, or “information about information,” to describe your content. Your writer should be amenable to this practice as well.
- Search-text for images. The photographer of the image above labeled it with “Craft, Basket, Wicker, Weaving, Straw, Seaside, Handmade, Hands, Gloves” and more, because text is what makes search go ’round. Without these keywords, nobody could find her photograph.
- Metadata in PDFs. Search engines can find PDFs, not only by scanning the text in them, but also by referring to the Keywords field. When you generate PDFs, edit them (Document Summary in Adobe Acrobat Pro) and drop keywords into that field before you publish the documents.
- Meta-tags in HTML pages. Is your web team taking advantage of the title and description tags in your HTML headers? The former helps people find your pages (to some extent) and the latter contains the description they see in the search engine results pages (SERPs).
The best way to ensure that your content doesn’t get hidden under a basket is to have your writers deliver content that is a complete (keyword) basket case.
photo credit: Vicki Burton