Lee Odden

SEO Tops Recession Internet Marketing Tactics

Lee Odden     Online Marketing, Reader Polls, SEO

internet marketing poll

Let’s face it, we’re experiencing more than “interesting” economic times, especially those with a marketing responsibility in-house and at agencies.

To tap in to the stream of marketing-savvy collective wisdom online, we reached out to our network with a top internet marketing tactics poll for the next 6 months. Over 400 business marketers responded, making this the most popular poll Online Marketing Blog has run to-date. Readers were asked: What 3 internet marketing tactics will you emphasize most in the next 6 months?

Here are the results of the poll:

  • Search engine optimization (36%, 149 Votes)
  • Blogging (33%, 134 Votes)
  • Pay per click (26%, 107 Votes)
  • Email marketing (22%, 89 Votes)
  • Social networking (Facebook, LinkedIn) (21%, 86 Votes)
  • Blogger relations/blog PR (14%, 56 Votes)
  • Microblogging (Twitter, Plurk, Jaiku) (11%, 47 Votes)
  • Affiliate marketing (11%, 47 Votes)
  • Advertorial (NewsForce, AdFusion) (10%, 40 Votes)
  • Video marketing (7%, 29 Votes)

Search engine optimization, blogging and PPC taking the top 3 spots shouldn’t be too much of a surprise, although I wouldn’t have called them in that order.

One surprise is that “Corporate Web Site” received only 7% of the votes. An even more interesting result was that Advertorial was in the top ten. While AdFusion certainly falls in the advertorial category, NewsForce doesn’t consider itself advertorial, but rather “paid PR”. I personally don’t see the difference at the category level.

I suspect if “social media” had been presented as a single category, it would have garnered the top spot since social media tactics involve 5 of the top ten.

What do these poll results mean for internet marketers? First, SEO has achieved a comfort level for most marketers. Contrary to some mainstream media characterizations, search engine optimization is a high impact, high value tactic for reaching customers online.  Actually, search is about customers reaching/seeking companies, not the other way around.  With SEO, it isn’t a matter of “Should we?” it’s a matter of, “What’s stopping you?”.

Personally, I think those that incorporate long term engagement strategies via social media  rather than short online campaigns with definitive start/end dates will realize continued growth in their marketing programs regardless of the economic situation.  Social media tactics occupy 5 of the top ten spots. Social media is an ongoing relationship of listening, engaging and “giving to get”.

Search engine optimization factors into many aspects of social media (think keywords and tags!) along with being a highly effective tactic on it’s own.  Many of the marketers taking this poll realize that and have responded accordingly.

Do you agree that SEO should be online marketers’ top internet marketing tactic over the next 6 months?

Thank you to all the readers of Online Marketing Blog, our Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn networks for taking the poll!

You can see the poll with all 41 internet marketing tactics listed here.

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Lee Odden About Lee Odden

@LeeOdden is the CEO of TopRank Marketing and editor of Online Marketing Blog. Cited for his expertise by The Economist, Forbes and the Wall Street Journal, he's the author of the book Optimize and presents internationally on integrated content, search, social media and influencer marketing. When not at conferences, consulting, or working with his talented team, he's likely on a beach somewhere doing absolutely nothing.