Leveraging Keyword Research for Digital Asset Optimization

  |  August 8, 2011   |  Comments

Keyword research is a powerful tool to help you find good keywords and help you with many aspects of your marketing campaigns.

Digital asset optimization (DAO) is becoming a serious consideration among marketers ever since the beginning of blended or universal search. Many are calling it the new SEO. This is because traditional SEO focuses on optimizing text content and DAO expands the net to all types of non-text assets such as images, video, PDFs, podcasts, blogs, RSS, and other type assets. Most of these are social media related.


One way of looking at it is the combining of search engine optimization with social media optimization:

SEO + Social Media Optimization = Digital Asset Optimization

Optimizing for DAO is similar to SEO with the same best practices, but essentially you have each new media type to individually optimize for. With all of the options to choose from, many are overwhelmed and confused at which media type is the best to use. Furthermore, those who do use rich media assets are not optimizing them properly. According to a Forrester Research study, less than 20 percent of marketers insert keywords into file names of their videos on their sites. Even fewer marketers write keyword-rich captions or create online video libraries.

Learning About Searcher Intent With Keyword Research

Keyword research is not just a tool for identifying keywords for your PPC and SEO campaign. It is a tool for learning more about your customer. With it you can determine user intent. For instance, a searcher who does a search on "camera" suggests they are in the beginning phases of the buy cycle. A person who searches on "canon eos mark III" suggests they are toward the end of the cycle and are very close to making a purchase. If you then ad social media monitoring tools, you get to see these keywords used in sentences, tweets, and conversations, thus adding more context to what you already know about the keyword.


Identify Media Types for Targeted Keywords

Grab your targeted keyword list and do some searches and find out what files and media types Google and other search engines are displaying in the search engine results pages (SERPs). Different search queries will show a different mix of media types. Get to know which ones are prevalent for your keywords. Remember, these results are dynamic and will change often, so go back frequently to check on any new content.

After doing a search on the word "apple ipad," the Google search engine results page resulted in these media types: shopping, images, and news including real-time articles. If you could scroll down further, you would see videos. This can be done for any of your keywords to see what media types come up for your search term. What you don't see could also be suggestive. You may realize that video or image assets could be developed and optimized to help the searcher. If it is your asset, then your click-through rate is likely to go up.


Map Keywords to Digital Assets

Once you know what keywords people are using from your keyword research, you can then map this to the right kind of digital assets. Start with a less specific but core keyword like "bike," for instance. Next, break that keyword down into related topics and then subtopics as you can see in the table below.


Now break those subtopics down into long-tail or more specific keywords that are related. Finally, you can add the search volume to each keyword to provide some quick insight into popularity.

In this example, let's look at the keyword phrase "how to fix a flat bike tire." Assuming this is a popular search term within your targeted keyword list, then map this to the right media type that will provide the best experience for the searcher. I think we would all agree that a video would do the trick quite nicely. You might jot this down in the column next to that keyword and do this for each of your keywords. Then put together a plan to develop that media asset and add it to your website.

Once you add this to your website, you should then post this to other social media channels. If it's video, post to YouTube or another video sharing tool. This will help you increase the visibility of the asset.

Use Keywords in File Names and Tags

Follow optimization best practices like insuring your keywords are in the file names for your digital media assets. Furthermore, use keywords in tags for all images, video, and audio including ALT text for images. This will help identify them for the search engines and for visitors alike.

Keyword research is a powerful tool to help you not only find good keywords but also learn from them and use them in unique ways that will help you with many aspects of all of your marketing campaigns.


Ron Jones

Ron was president/CEO of Symetri Internet Marketing, which provides strategic SEM consulting and training. Ron was actively involved in the SEM community and spoke and trained at conferences and seminars. Ron also served on the Board of Directors for SEMPO and was one of the authors for the SEMPO Institute Fundamentals and Advanced courses.

Ron also published a book called Keyword Intelligence: Keyword Research for Search Social and Beyond. This book outlines various methods and tips for conducting keyword research but more importantly outlines many ways to use keyword research for social media, site design, content development and marketing, and even traditional marketing and branding.

Ron passed away on June 30, 2012.

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