SEO: Targeting Your Market


Doing business without knowing what your target market is will prevent you from reaching your objectives: increased sales, market share or brand awareness. Where the blanket approach of mass marketing was touted by marketing professionals of years past, today's industry experts are singing the praises of one-to-one, or relationship marketing. Today's consumers, as you've heard many times, are savvier than ever before. With access to nearly any piece of information they want via the Internet, consumers don't want sales people spouting off scripted presentations. You need to know your target market before using SEO to complete your website to high standards

Define your target audience and their interests

The first step in most marketing campaigns, Search Marketing included, is to start by defining your target audience.  Your target audience is a defined set of people who you are marketing your product to.


Traditionally, defining a target audience involves determining their age, sex, geographic locations, and especially their needs. What we want to zero in on for our SEO Strategy.  What do they want?  What are their needs that aren’t being met?  Knowing these things will help us better define a content strategy and prioritize content to bring to the forefront.

There are two reasons we start with audience needs rather than jumping straight into keyword research

    • Content Strategy: You want to provide content and tools that are as relevant and useful as possible to your target audiences.  This goes beyond regular SEO practices and into site strategy, although providing relevant, useful content in itself is link bait. For example, let’s say I have a health site.  I have several types of articles on health, drug information, and information on types of diseases and conditions.  My angle on the site is that I’m targeting seniors.  If I find out seniors are primarily interested in information on prescription drug plans and cheap Viagra, then I know that I want to provide information specifically on those things. 

    • Targeted Keyword Discovery: Ideally you’ll want to do keyword research based on what the audience wants, not solely on what content the site already has (or plans to have sans audience targeting), which may be limited. I can do keyword research on health conditions and drugs (content I have on my site) and determine what the general population is searching for and optimize my current content, or I can cast my net wide and look at what my target audience wants first, then do my keyword research.  You may find there are needs that your site is not meeting. 

  • For each piece of content you are recommending, try to provide:

    • Backup Data: Provide information backing up why this content will appeal to your audience


  • Specifics: Be as specific as you can with your recommendations.  For example if you’re suggesting partnering with meal home delivery sites, find out which ones are going to provide the most relevant info, at what cost if possible, and what the ideal partnership would look like for content and SEO purposes.  Even provide contact information if you can.


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