THE SENSE AND SENSIBILITY OF SEARCH AND SUSTAINABILITY
Just for a moment, forget everything that magnets have ever taught you about attraction. The most irresistible pulling force in all of nature exists not between opposites, but two like charges.
Search your feelings. You know it to be true.
Sorry. With a new Star Wars movie upon us and all the talk of an all-powerful natural force that draws everything about it together, I couldn’t resist.
Think about everything you love in this world. Dollars to doughnuts, if you strip them all down to look more closely and intimately at their fundamental parts, you’ll find some common thread that runs deeply through them all.
- Perhaps it’s a love of animals.
- Causes that stem from an imbalance of social justice around the world may fill your every action and decision with a certain conscientious forethought to serve a greater good.
- Devout faith in the teachings of an organized religion may inform and shape your every thought, your very core principles that define an unshakable inner essence.
I’m no different. Stick with me, here, but the same patient spirit of focused long-term effort that guides Mouse and Man’s dedication to environmental sustainability is exactly what energizes our love affair with successful search marketing.
The most worthwhile strategies often have not tomorrow’s rewards in mind, but those we’ll capitalize on next week – maybe even next month or a year from now. Think of life as a boxer in a 12-round fight. A pugilist who starts throwing blows to his opponent’s body in the tenth round of a 12-round bout has started 10 rounds too late. Every punch thrown to the torso builds one atop the next to wear an opponent down to the nub, but that punishment needs time to “build interest” and take hold. The sooner a fighter starts delivering those body shots, the longer they’ll have to mount their exhaustion.
Neither sustainable resources nor search marketing deliver on their greater promises overnight. It’s never too late to embrace either, but the sooner we can begin, the richer the rewards both will yield. In the meantime, both require that we sometimes turn to short-term solutions, but never so attach ourselves to those immediately rewarding resources that they become our indefinite crutches.
In digital marketing, display advertising would be our equivalent to fossil fuels in that both offer immediate effectiveness, but not necessarily much else. Take one of the most popular, successful and cost-effective display advertising models, for example – Pay-Per-Click (PPC). No other name could more aptly describe it: advertisers bid on strategically chosen placements for ideal keywords where a brand wants a prominent presence, offering to pay a given rate for each time a user clicks their ad. Bidders will ultimately pay a strictly proportionate price for delivered traffic.
It’s the leanest means of paying for advertising. Ads appear only to optimal prospective customers that are demographically most likely to need the advertised products and services. Meanwhile, brands pay for exactly what they get – no more, no less. It’s an instant-gratification proposition – the actual traffic is indeed beating a path to the landing pages – but it’s a very limited appeal for a few reasons:
- Display and PPC ads are conspicuously labeled to distinguish paid links from the authentic relevance of the “organic” search results.
- As it happens, most users would rather look into genuine content than advertisements
- You can lead traffic to your website, but you can’t make them trust you enough to convert to true believers in your brand.
- It misses out on building the trust between brands and consumers that distinguish the world’s most enduringly successful brands.
Make no mistake – filling in a stream of instant traffic like a shot from a doctor is a must and many brands continue to rely on its effectiveness for the long-term. You could choose to stick strictly to search marketing until your content cultivates your brand’s reputation for integrity, but that’s an all-or-nothing approach that could leave your business to stagnate during the methodical growth period. What’s more, search engine optimization (SEO) comes with absolutely no positive quantifiable guarantees and sometimes even negative repercussions from working with shady snake oil SEO folks. Any search marketer who says otherwise is, quite frankly, lying.
Think for a moment about our world’s fossil fuels. Coal and refined oil and natural gas are potent, immediately accessible fuel and energy sources, but look further ahead. Not only are they in finite supply after millions of years in the making beneath the Earth’s surface, but we expend them at no long-term reward to our planet and, in fact, steady environmental harm due both to their extraction processes and the pollutant byproducts we generate by burning them. When the instant gratification has passed, where are we left tomorrow? Next week? Next month? A year from now? A decade?
We need more. We need for these existing, fast fixes to be our stop-gaps while we engineer a durable, sustainable plan that provides for what we’ll need a thousands “tomorrows” from now.
Again, back to boxing.
The boxer who hasn’t trained a sharp, damaging jab that can set up a wealth of combinations arrives on Fight Night already screwed. Knowing how to use that most fundamental of punches doesn’t materialize instantly. It’s a product of repetitive, diligent training spread over years in the gym. It’s a long game, just like environmentally sustainable practices and search marketing. Erecting wind farms and solar panels en masse after we’ve already destroyed our natural resources won’t instantly unravel decades of abuse any more than starting even the most focused and intelligently designed SEO campaign today will have you waking up to a worldwide online following for your brand tomorrow morning.
Turning consistently to renewable resources today buys our environment time to heal itself by diminishing humanity’s overall carbon footprint as significantly as possible. Years from now, we can look out upon a healthier natural world because we learned to work cooperatively with what nature offers instead of only taking what we need and returning nothing in kind. Search marketing plants seeds of trust between brands and customers using organic, informative, engaging and shareable content to generate dialogue and begin a long-lasting impression of integrity.
Time. That’s really what it always comes down to, though, isn’t it? Through search marketing, we create a lasting, enduring crop of brand evangelists that have grown to trust you and are ready, willing and able to avow that trust to their friends and family. That sort of trust demands consistency, however – producing quality content that’s germane to your customers’ interests and needs at stable intervals they can count on when they turn to your Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or blog.
Consistency. Durability. Patience. Forward thinking. Short-term subsistence that temporarily fuels long-term sustainable growth. These are our threads. No matter what your online marketing needs are Mouse and Man is here to provide you with solutions for all your SEO, Pay-Per-Click, and Online Advertising needs.