Discover the right keyword phrases: think like a reporter!

Posted by on Nov 19, 2013 in Blog, Featured | 0 comments

Do you have an awkward feeling that your website’s keyword phrases¹ could be better? Can your target audience easily find your website? Looking for some handy tips? Well, I am certainly game for any new SEO (Search Engine Optimization) copyediting or writing² suggestions. In creating the right keyword phrases, SEO consultant Jill Whalen’s advice is to think like a reporter. In her handbook “The Nitty-gritty of Writing for the Search Engines” she advises SEO copyeditors to ask the questions reporters do (who? what? where?). Why? Because the answers to these questions are often the keyword phrases you are looking for. Reporter’s cap In other words, if you ask these questions, you will most likely come up with your keyword phrases. For example, when writing for an Italian adventure travel website specializing in bike and walking tours, you can ask yourself the following question: “What kind of travel?” and the keyword phrase answer could be: Italian adventure travel. And when you ask yourself the question “What kind of vacations?,” the keyword phrases probably at the tip of your tongue are : bike tours and walking tours. By being more specific about the product or service you are selling, you optimize your text. So instead of using generic words such as product or service, Whalen’s advice is to use your keyword phrases instead. Regarding the website mentioned above, Whalen suggests substituting our service with the keyword phrase our adventure travel tours. So instead of being too general, be descriptive. Journalists fit the description Journalists are said to be particularly suitable when it comes to writing for the web. Whalen certainly illustrates one of the reasons why. We ask ourselves these questions everyday. ¹ “A ‘keyword phrase’ is a two-word or longer phrase that prospects type into a search query box, such as ‘Florida travel’ or ‘heavy equipment dealers.’ The word ‘keyword’ refers to a single word search term (like ‘Florida’ or ‘equipment’).” ² “Search engine optimization (SEO) writing: Search engine optimization writing is specialized copywriting that entails weaving keywords and keyphrases into marketing or informational copy. The purpose of search engine optimization copywriting is to gain prime positioning for the desired keyphrases, as well as increase page conversion rates.” Both definitions are by SEO copywriter Heather Lloyd-Martin, author of “Successful Search Engine Copywriting.”  Copyright photo: Svilen Milev,...

Read More

Pep talk for a healthy economy

Posted by on Nov 19, 2013 in Blog | 0 comments

My newspaper has shrunk due to fewer advertisements. Hardly a trend which makes me feel happy, but I do try to see the upside of having a more compact daily. For one, you can proudly say that you read the entire paper. For another, you can probably take for granted, that only the most important news is being published. And if the news is for the most part negative, it may not trouble you as long, because the amount of time you spend reading has been shortened. How the media write about the crisis does have an enormous impact upon us. Professor in Economic Theory and Policy at the Radboud University Nijmegen Esther-Mirjam Sent, criticizes the media for being sloppy at times in its coverage of the economy (“Dag Vogels, dag bloemen, dag crisis,” Volkskrant, 11 April 2009). For this reason, we shouldn’t believe everything we read. For example, slanted news releases with little context, can be misleading and negatively influence how we perceive economic events and developments. Sent stresses that economy is all about emotion. So that journalists when writing about the recession should strike a balance between reporting about bad and good news. We need to trust the economy again and have the courage to continue on. Which means that we need to hear good news as well. If economics is actually a social science, and our emotions and fears play a major role in actually determining how healthy our economy is, then I guess in-depth and balanced reporting is imperative, certainly if I ever want to hold a thick newspaper in my hands again.   Copyright photo: Piotr Bizior, bizior photography –...

Read More