SEO strategies for B2B content marketing.

Last year, the Content Marketing Institute released its “B2B Content Marketing: 2014 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America” report, stating that 76 percent of B2B marketers utilize blogging as a content marketing tactic. In addition, 63 percent of B2B marketers cite web traffic as the most valuable outcome for content marketing.

“The benefit of blogging with SEO is that you’re not only creating useful content that your customers value, but also ensuring prospective customers can find you through a web search when they have a problem in need of a solution," says Jeremy Durant, business principal of Bop Design.

Durant shares the following steps for blogging with SEO 

Choose your keyword 

Starting out, it's best to focus on one keyword to keep the strategy simplified. In addition to making sure it's relevant to ideal customers, Durant suggests using a "long tail" keyword phrase. This means instead of writing "consulting," write "San Diego financial consulting" or "medical software training." The more specific to the business (without get too adjective heavy) allows a website to rank higher for specific searchers who are more likely to convert to customers.

Keep it relevant 

Durant stresses to not include irrelevant broad keywords like "cars," "apparel" or "cat memes” in order to not spam the Internet search.

Include variations of the keyword 

With Google's Hummingbird update, the algorithm now picks up on conversations more so than traditional keywords. For example, if an accounting firm writing "bookkeeping services" and "accounting services" helps it describe the business in multiple ways.

Avoid keyword stuffing 

“We often suggest sticking to one or two keywords per blog post, because sometimes businesses are too eager to include every hopeful keyword on their list,” says Durant. He also suggests distributing the keyword evenly throughout the blog post. “Mentioning it once in each paragraph is a little overkill depending on content length. Ultimately, your natural voice and what is most comfortable to read will outline a keyword's placement,” says Durant.

Don't be a slave to the keyword 

The point of a blog post is to attract visitors—not the search engine bots. Blog copy should be actually pleasant to read and most importantly be a valuable resource for readers. While marketers should want to play nice with the bots—they're not the customers.

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