B-to-B: Search for Business
Finally, do not ignore the role of search in building brands. If you only treat search as a promotional, transactional click tool, that's all you'll get. Instead, step back and see search as a window directly into the ways buyers are thinking about your brand or your marketplace. It's a dynamic way of experimenting, testing and offering buyers value when they clearly have a need and their mindset is actively looking for facts or, more often in B-to-B, a narrative that can help them in their decision-making.
Whether it's paid or organic, see what stories are thrown when you search for your brand name, key product category and content message. See if there's brand clarity and consistency across the stories you own and can influence.
Search is both a window on the buyers' world and also a mirror into your own organization. It has a vital role in showing where you may be failing to create brand stories with power, with persuasion and with persistence.
A quote to end, which is always true, but feels particularly appropriate to an article about the role of search: "Do not trust those peddling answers. Instead, it is better to believe in those that give us the right questions to ask."
James Trezona is the European managing director for Mason Zimbler, a Harte-Hanks Company. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.