Despite the explosion of social media, search remains one of the most popular online activities, one that cuts across all demographics. While search is becoming more and more influenced by the social graph, words are still the primary determining factor used by the search engines to identify the most relevant content to return in results. If you are not using the right words, you dramatically decrease your chances of being found in those results. This is why you need to carefully choose the language you use for all the text associated with your online video and image assets. This web of words I have coined your search engine optimization (SEO) language ecosystem. It can be leveraged in many ways and should be the lifeblood of any digital marketing strategy. Here are five ways your SEO language ecosystem can and should be used by film, television and webseries producers:
1. Language for content discovery
In the simplest terms you need to use the right language to be found. The moment someone is typing words into Google or Bing is an incredible opportunity. They are actively looking for something and if that thing is relevant to your film, TV show or web series, you want it to be turning up in the search results. The very first step you need to take is to make sure the language you are using is the same language people are using to search. Otherwise your content has very little chance of being discovered. (This is where keyword research comes into play).
2. Language for context
An ecosystem is all about the bigger picture, the larger context. Many people talk about a digital footprint which is simply a measure of all the ways a person (or a project) can interact with and be connected to the digital environment. The online footprint or ecosystem of your screen media project can include your website, social media profiles, app store listings, press releases, titles and descriptions for video and image assets, and all the other sites, social media , news stories and more that link and point to your project. The search engines find and index it all and use it to understand what your project is about. As much as you can, you need to ensure that the right language is included in this larger context.
3. Language for market research
How can you find your audience online? It often begins with typing words into a search engine yourself. Once you have an intimate understanding of what the language ecosystem of your project should be, then you can use those words to find others who are interested in and talking about what you have to offer. The data from keyword research can also prove there is a viable audience for your movie, television or webisode series. There is no doubt the numbers associated with search activity can prove market viability and help you position your project for the best chance of success.
4. Language for building community
Shared language is often what helps bond people together. Whether it is exclusive jargon or shared symbolic language (such as hashtags on Twitter) or just a shared basic vocabulary, words can help build a common culture and create community. If you and your project use and understand the right language then you can join and build community/audience very effectively. This is often where the SEO language ecosystem becomes a social media language ecosystem. A note of caution though, in this context you must be authentic and care about the community. If you get caught being purely promotional or others feel you are a pretender who doesn’t really understand what they are talking about, it can all go horribly wrong very quickly (in the way only the Internet allows).
5. Language for revenue generation
So can using the right SEO language ecosystem make you money? Yes, it can. When you fully leverage the power of words to help others discover your content, build a wide and relevant context, discover your market and build a loyal community, you will are also on your way to building a viable business model:
the right words + a solid marketing strategy = a highly engaged audience + monetizable opportunities
It won’t make you rich overnight, but if done well, it is the beginning of building a steady revenue stream that is part of a sustainable long term strategy for your screen media business.
What Do You Think?
Do you have a plan for the language ecosystem of your film, TV or web series? Are there other ways you could leverage the power of words online? I’d love to hear from you. Please share your thoughts, ideas, questions below or send them to me at annelise (at) veria.ca or on Twitter @veriatweet.
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