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Think Like a Search Engine

To get the results you want from your search engine programs, it helps to learn about how search engines work. The major search sites (Google, MSN and Yahoo!) provide basic explanations of their engines and ad programs, and may even have an online tutorial. Once you’re comfortable with search engine terminology, use this worksheet to plan your campaign.

1. Who is your target customer? Profile your most profitable customers to frame your thinking about the terms they may use for searches.

  • 2.

    What is the goal of your search engine marketing program? Successful SEM campaigns can be measured by clickthroughs (or site traffic), site engagement

    • (i.

      e. demos, downloads, completed contact forms, new subscriptions to your newsletter, etc.) or sales. Prioritize your objectives.

  • 3.

    What keywords and phrases do you think your prospects use to find you? Brainstorm primary and secondary terms that best describe your offerings and audience.

4. What keywords and phrases do prospects actually use? Speak to your customers about the search terms they would use. Check this list against the list you created in step 3.

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