Blue Ocean search engine marketing Technique — Whiteboard Friday

The writer’s views are solely his or her personal (excluding the unlikely occasion of hypnosis) and will not all the time mirror the views of Moz.

For those who’re accustomed to the blue ocean marketing strategy, you realize that search engine marketing is inherently a «pink ocean» trade. With fierce competitors to achieve rankings, hyperlinks, and authority, SEOs are continuously attempting to one-up their rivals. On this surroundings, is there any hope for making a «blue ocean» — innovating to keep away from the uneven waters of the present market? 

In at the moment’s Whiteboard Friday, PJ Howland of suggests {that a} blue ocean search engine marketing technique is achievable by creating real looking content material to your clients. Watch to be taught extra! 

Click on on the whiteboard picture above to open a excessive decision model in a brand new tab!

Video Transcription

Hey, Moz followers. Welcome again to a different Whiteboard Friday. I’m PJ Howland. I’m the Head of search engine marketing and Evergreen Content material at So my background is form of that candy spot proper in between should you’ve bought search engine marketing over right here and content material and editorial over right here, that center floor the place search engine marketing and editorial and content material collide.

For those who’re accustomed to that world, you realize that we’re coping with thinner margins, now we have fewer assets, and now we have much less clear path. So that is the world we function in. It is a spot the place we’re attempting to simply get slightly little bit of a bonus over our rivals, and it is form of created this mounted mindset of simply attempting to scrape by to simply get slightly little bit of a bonus.

Nevertheless, I feel that there is a mindset that may actually assist break this mildew to ensure that each single month is definitely your greatest month ever. So it is the blue ocean search engine marketing technique. 

What’s blue ocean technique?

So what’s blue ocean search engine marketing technique? Properly, begin with what blue ocean technique is. 

Perhaps you have learn the e-book «Blue Ocean Technique.» Perhaps you have heard the time period thrown round. Perhaps you have not heard of it in any respect. Give me only one minute and I am going to form of clarify this with a narrative. 

So again within the days when circuses had been touring the countryside, there have been two predominant circuses, Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey, and they’d spend numerous time, power, and assets attempting to at least one up one another.

They had been producing who can have crazier stunts, who can have weirder clowns, who can have extra eccentric animal tips or no matter. It bought to the purpose to the place they had been competing so onerous with one another that they forgot what their clients actually cared about. The emotions of the day had been that, hey, we do not wish to see a number of rings. We do not like wanting all over the place. Put it again down to at least one ring. We do not just like the animal tips. They’re merciless. They’re outdated. However these circuses had been so mounted on competing with one another that each of them ended up dropping out. 

Then who ought to come alongside? This new participant, Cirque du Soleil. Now, should you’ve been to a Cirque du Soleil present, you in all probability know the place I am going with this. It is not like a conventional circus. Actually, it is not like the rest on the market. However what they did do is that they took what labored and excluded what did not work from a conventional circus. So that they minimize out the merciless animal acts. Additionally they stored within the clowns and the acrobats, as a result of these had been working within the conventional circus, they usually introduced in this type of third warmth of this theater component, this high-quality theater expertise.

For those who’ve been to a Cirque present, you realize what I am speaking about. There’s positively a story there. So what they’ve achieved is that they’ve created a blue ocean. They’ve created a world the place there actually isn’t any direct apples-to-apples rivals. 

Now, Cirque du Soleil is not the one participant on the market who’s achieved this. We might discuss iTunes. What had been your choices earlier than iTunes? Netflix, similar factor. Earlier than Netflix was on the scene, the place had been you watching your stuff? Airbnb. You see the place I am going with this, that each one three of those companies or merchandise launch, there actually wasn’t something on the market. It was a real blue ocean. 

Blue ocean search engine marketing

Whiteboard illustration of a blue ocean (no competition) and red ocean (lots of competition).

So how will we get that from an search engine marketing perspective?

Properly, we have to begin by realizing the place search engine marketing is correct now. So search engine marketing is a set mindset recreation. Inherently it’s a pink ocean technique. For those who do not imagine me, let me illustrate it this manner. You’ve this case the place you have bought a key phrase.

You take a look at your competitor and also you see, hey, they have 100 hyperlinks. You say, «Large deal. I am going to get 200 hyperlinks.» Their website velocity rating is 80. I’ll make it 90. We will have 90. They write 1,500 phrases. You see the place I am going with this. We write 2,500 phrases. That is not blue ocean pondering. That’s mounted, pink ocean, fierce competitors mindset pondering, but it surely’s the place loads of SEOs discover themselves. Heck, I have been there. That’s primarily skyscraper content material.

It is skyscraper article constructing. Hey, there’s been a spot for that, however at its core it truly is pink ocean, mounted mindset pondering. So how will we recover from that? How will we as SEOs, digital entrepreneurs, content material entrepreneurs, how will we recover from the truth that we’re enjoying a pink ocean recreation? 

Begin with the shopper

Whiteboard illustration of a customer interview.

Properly, it begins with the shopper.

So image this. Image you are sitting down with a buyer, besides you are not a marketer anymore. You possibly work on the success or service or product facet. You sit down with them and also you say, «Hey, we’re enhancing our product, our service, our success. What’s going to make it a greater answer for you?» Simply image an incredible dialog the place they are going forwards and backwards with you.

You gather invaluable perception, and on the finish, you produce a greater product and that buyer is grateful for it. Now image that very same buyer besides swap out your self as a product marketer and now you are a marketer marketer. You are speaking about your search engine marketing technique and also you say, «Hey, so what we do is we take a look at the rivals and we add extra phrases. We see the hyperlinks that they construct and we add extra hyperlinks. What do you consider that? How does that profit you?»

The client goes to take a look at you and say, «That does not assist me in any respect. That is not what I requested for. That is not what I would like. That is not the deal of how companies work. You are right here to make my world simpler.» Fact be advised, once we add extra phrases to a web page, typically we’re simply making extra phrases on the market. Have you learnt what I imply? It is one thing that the purchasers do not wish to take care of.

Set your writers up for fulfillment

So we stay on this actuality although, the place as SEOs, as editorial professionals, as content material entrepreneurs, we’re on this place the place we’re tasked with nearly an unattainable process. How will we ship distinctive content material when the individuals producing that, possibly it is an search engine marketing, possibly it is a author, aren’t essentially the subject material specialists?

So it begins with what you give the author or the search engine marketing to really start this undertaking. So I’ve discovered so many individuals begin with they only say, «Hey, this is the key phrase. Go for it. We’re attempting to rank for this. Simply get that piece of content material out.» Inevitably, you’ll produce a skyscraper piece of content material with that. That units everybody up for failure.

No person wins when all you do is begin off with a key phrase. As an alternative what I’ve discovered is it actually takes detailed write-ups that start with interviews with material specialists. My outlines that I produce with my group, I’ve by no means seen one below two pages. Most of them are between three to 5 pages that we produce for these particular person subjects. That each one has to return from your personal perception with like your group. I am unable to actually produce what your buyer desires. That is one thing I invite you to determine by yourself. Nevertheless, I’ve discovered that clients, it doesn’t matter what trade you are in, I do not care if it is B2B, B2C, I do not care should you’re promoting SaaS, or should you’ve bought an e-commerce platform, no matter, the person who says, «Sure, I wish to purchase that,» is all the time an individual.

Folks need actuality

Ten instances out of ten you are coping with individuals. So what do individuals need? Folks need actuality. They need authenticity. So there are three issues that I feel may also help anybody, whatever the trade that you simply’re in, enhance up your content material. Once I’m speaking about content material, that could possibly be articles. It might weblog posts. It could possibly be touchdown pages. It could possibly be white papers, no matter. The purpose is that folks need actuality. 

1. Tales

So this is how I have been capable of finding actually good supply strategies for this. Tales. My world is much more article centered, however we attempt to begin each article with a narrative. Folks love that.

I discover a a lot increased time on web page once we lead out with tales. I do know what you are pondering. It is like, «Properly, Wikipedia is somebody we’re competing towards, they usually do not begin with a narrative. No person begins with a narrative.» Okay, determine if you wish to be a pink ocean participant or a blue ocean participant. 

2. Recommendation

The subsequent factor is recommendation. Now, once more, going again to the truth of it’s that we’re coping with conditions the place we have got writers who aren’t material specialists.

That is okay. No person is in hassle for that actuality of the state of affairs. However it does matter that you simply search that recommendation out. So schedule interviews with material specialists. Purchase your group a e-book. Have a e-book membership inside your group. Just remember to’re constructing experience inside your group.

3. Examples

Lastly, examples. Folks need actuality. They need authenticity. If in case you have buyer knowledge, if in case you have case research, I do not suppose you need to be gating all of that essentially. There’s an incredible use case to be made for simply letting that stuff on the market. Folks wish to see actual examples occurring within the wild. 

The way to measure success

So that you provide you with this blue ocean technique that solely you may produce, since you ought to know your buyer higher than me, and also you wish to work out learn how to measure it.

Properly, should you’ve been doing content material advertising for greater than, I do not know, the final half-hour, you realize that there is a large hole between the primary piece of content material produced and the {dollars} within the pocket of the group. There’s quite a bit that occurs in between there. So how do you really just remember to can come by on this with correct measurement? I’ve discovered that point on web page is the very first thing that goes up.

So earlier than we form of rolled out this with, we had been seeing common time on web page between 3.5 to 4 minutes. Not good, not unhealthy. High-quality, no matter. However after rolling this out, we’re seeing common time on web page of between 5.5 to six.5 minutes. I’ve pages which might be nearly 3,000 phrases in size that really get learn.

Now we have articles which have common time on web page of eight minutes or increased, and that is a extremely validating factor. I imagine that after time on web page goes up, then you can begin seeing in case your rankings and site visitors go up. Now you may see proper right here there is not any tinfoil hat. I am not making a direct insinuation that there’s a correlation between time on web page and the rankings that Google goes handy out to you.

What I’m saying is that good content material will get observed, and when it will get observed, you are going to see these hyperlinks are available. You see how this works. We’re beginning backwards. Like loads of the instances we lead off with saying, «I would like extra hyperlinks.» However in actuality, is that actually going to serve us? I’d slightly play a recreation the place hyperlinks come as a byproduct of fine content material. So what’s actually the takeaway right here?

I feel it is a mindset takeaway. In my group, we have buried skyscraper content material. It is lifeless. It is within the floor. Now it doesn’t suggest we do not take a look at rivals. Clearly, that may be foolish to not do. We’re in search engine marketing.

Nevertheless, I feel that if you wish to actually transition to a blue ocean, limitless mindset, there needs to be some form of actuality verify the place you say, «Hey, sooner or later I am not going to be listening to the rivals for each little phrase that I write on my internet web page.» Thanks for watching the video at the moment. I stay up for listening to your feedback. For anybody that is achieved one of these shift within the group, stay up for partaking with you in an excellent dialogue within the feedback beneath.

Thanks for stopping by at the moment. See you on the subsequent Whiteboard Friday.

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