There are a lot of people trying to understand branded SEO and a lot of people who are interested in online reputation management. We get a lot of phone calls from people trying to push things down in Google, the opposite of what we typically go for! Today, we tackle this topic of branded SEO head on. It's a pretty complex topic so pay close attention to this quick video.


Hello and welcome to our Branded SEO video. I'm Chad Hill and I have Adam Stetzer here with me today.

Good afternoon, Chad. A lot of people out trying to figure out the branded seo deal and working on their seo branding as well, as well as a keen interest in reputation management. We get a lot of phone calls from people trying to push things down in Google, the opposite of SEO, so I want to tackle this topic of branded SEO today. I think it's a fairly complex topic, because it can mean several different things in terms of how seo branded mentions might impact the algorithm, how you might want to outrank someone else with a similar name, or what you should do if you're trying to just do general PR or push down some bad news in Google such as reputation management. So that's a whole broad spectrum of topics. Where can we start and help our viewers with branded SEO?

Well I think the first one you talked about was where it fits into just SEO overall, and so having diversified mentions and links to your website is a good thing. So we talked a little bit in some previous videos about how overdoing the links to your website with one certain anchor text is bad and actually in some cases can lead to some issues with the Penguin update. Having seo branded mentions is just a natural way to get diversity, and it's actually makes everything look better and more normal when you have some keyword anchor text links and some seo branded mentions.

Right. And that's where it's kind of confusing because branded SEO to me in the context that you're talking about almost just sounds like PR. And this is public relations where you're floating your name out and you're doing press releases and you're participating in events where you get mentioned in the right category. I do think that's important. There's a lot of evidence that Google has increased that in the algorithm because it communicates trust in your company name.

So I guess the interesting question there is if people are out working on their seo branding and this is naturally occurring, will that have a spillover effect and help their rankings on organic terms that are not branded, such as their head term or their money term? What do you think, Chad?

Yeah, no, I think that's a great point. And actually there's a lot of good thought leaders in the SEO industry that say that truly SEO should just be incorporated into all the other marketing activities you're doing. So you're really bringing that point up, Adam, that really a part of PR has an SEO benefit-- a part of partnership and go to events has an SEO benefit. But in this particular context, yes, absolutely when you're doing effective and good outreach in your local community or a national level, there is a spill over that helps your branded SEO.

Right, and as with everything in SEO, we say put the quality first and let the SEO follow. So as you're doing these activities, have something real to say, spend a lot of time on it, polish it up, do it well, but then don't be blind to the SEO value it has.

But then let's switch gears a little bit and talk to those viewers who are maybe searching on this term branded SEO and are thinking more PR or reputation management. Any advice to them?

Yeah, well, I think that again one of the benefits that we talk a lot about is content marketing and how it allows you to write interesting informational content, infographics, videos, and other things that answer people's questions and then find strategic places where that content can go to find an audience. And then as a secondary benefit, the search engines find and lead people back to your website. It's really hard if you go too crazy with focusing on just getting your name all over the place, because people start to say, well hey, this isn't really informational content. This is sort of your marketing content. So basically you have to be careful when you're looking at your overall SEO program, specifically thinking about branded SEO, about how those two things interact, because if you're only focused on seo branding terms, some of the other opportunities that are available for SEO are not going to work for you.

That's an excellent point. So the SEO can sort of overtake the project which turns the whole thing upside down. And a great example of how to do this well-- and we just had someone in the Semify forum talking about this. We had posted about newsjacking as this interesting new way to approach content marketing. And I think newsjacking and writing about news events is a great way to get a quote in with a branded seo mention-- form a company that's in that space. It's very natural. It's been done on TV and radio spots for decades, so it can be done well in SEO, which will get a branded mention. But the main thrust of that story is about something that's hot, that people are searching for-- there's real information exchange. This person in our forum recently tried it, saw a lot of pick up in syndication, and actually ended up with a few PR calls to their client, which was not their primary focus.

But again, it comes back to this idea that if you're trying to work on branded SEO, you might have that upside down, and you should really be thinking about just working on your brand through traditional PR and other methods just with an eye towards how can this also benefit my SEO. And if you get that equation right, you might find your branded SEO is right where it needs to be.