In the recent weeks and months there has been a lot of discussion and effort around companies wanting to rank for specific events that are only relevant for a very short period of time. Take the recent World Cup that was played in South Africa; so many companies have stretched their online marketing budgets to try and ensure that they can catch some of the tourist spend that has flooded in to the country.
Businesses in the travel and accommodation sectors have been particularly keen on making their online marketing budgets have a far greater bang. Unfortunately for the majority there has been one crucial flaw in all their online marketing. That flaw has been the time that they devoted to the campaign itself.
Let me explain this a little further. The campaign start date was June 23rd, the campaign end date was July 11. That’s a month worth of campaign. Now this would be great if the campaign was using online marketing such as 3rd party advertising and AdWords only; unfortunately many companies have had limited budgets and have wanted to rank organically for specific search terms over this specific period. (can you see the problem yet???)
Search engines, although they have given some assistance with real time search results, are still looking for longevity and relevance!
The keyword there is longevity. If you want to rank for a keyword or phrase that is going to be highly contested, a single page (no matter how well written for search) is not going to be seen as the most relevant to a search engine. To this end, an online marketing campaign’s start needs have traction before the event you are “piggy backing” off starts. This means that at least 6 weeks to 10 weeks before your special actually kicks in, you need to be promoting and speaking about your special and the event itself. This will make your content more relevant and more compelling to both search engines as well as the people you are trying to reach.
For events that are truly massive with a worldwide appeal such as the 2012 Olympics and the keyword “2012 Olympics accommodation”, you’d better get started within the next year. Make sure all content is relevant, from the domain name to the articles.
Ultimately backing this ‘basic’ seo up with AdWords and 3rd party advertising, not to mention social media, is what will truly culminate in a successful online marketing initiative. Online marketing is truly successful when many different layers are used together; this means taking best practice SEO as the base and then adding social media (twitter, facebook, etc); pay-per-click advertising (AdWords, Facebook ads) and 3rd party advertising to that all concentrate your efforts and make for a better return on investment.