How to find search terms with niche demand

by Dan Lemp

Voiceover: 0:02

Business owners. Do you want an unfair advantage over your competitors? Do you want to dominate in your area of expertise you are listening to business life hacks , learn to influence consumer psychology and shortcut your way to business success with tips, tricks and hacks from award-winning digital agency, J Marketing.

Dan Lemp: 0:27

Ladies and gentlemen. You know what time it is, it’s time for another business life hacks podcast. Now this week, we’re talking about B2B keyword strategy and keyword research, SEO research, and how to get the right people to your website. So a problem that a lot of B2B industries have is that, there are only a few people who are searching for the services they provide, but there are unlimited ways that they could be searching and you don’t know exactly how to get those people to your site. Josh, what do they need to be focusing on through advertising and through SEO to attract the right kinds of people when there’s not that much keyword data to go on?

Josh Strawczynski: 1:15

You know, this is a really tough problem for a lot of marketing managers in particular, they know they need to write content. They know they need to rank through their Google ads, through their SEO, but they don’t know where to apply their efforts. Moreover, they don’t know how to explain to their bosses that, we just pumped out all this content, but the phones aren’t ringing off the hook, you know, I don’t have a thousand leads. So have I wasted this investment? That’s a big problem. And it’s a tough topic for us to answer. Dan, you see this all the time, tell us about the top few mistakes these guys are making in the first place. And then from there we can get into what should you do and how should you be thinking about solving this problem?

Dan Lemp: 2:03

Well, like you said, people are trying to make their phones ring off the hook when in reality the people, like you said. People are trying to make their phones ring off the hook , so they look good for their bosses. It feels like they’re getting a lot done. So they’re just chasing keywords with their really high search volume. But the keywords with the highest search volume in these cases might have a very low commercial intent. So what does that mean? We have a client called 20, 20 fire protection. They do fire safety checks for companies and residential buildings. Now in their case, a search term like fire extinguisher would have a very, very high search volume, but that’s not someone who’s actually looking to buy what they’re selling.

Someone who is looking to buy what they are selling might be searching fire protection company in Sydney. Now there are only a few people who are searching for that term, but that is the term with the high commercial intent that is more likely to turn into a sale. So they have to kind of bite the bullet and fight the instinct to go for the really high search volume of fire extinguisher. And instead, really stay laser-focused on profit and on their sales, their bottom line, which is going to be the high commercial intent keywords like fire protection company in Sydney. So that’s the first thing is keyword volume versus commercial intent.

The next thing is you really need to have a strong content strategy to make sure that when people come to your site, they are really impressed with the quality and the quantity of content that you’re putting out about this niche, such that they really feel that you are the authority. And you also need to make sure that Google knows that you’re in authority on anything kind of related to a search term, that someone might be searching in your niche.

So with one of our clients, Wealth Safe, who is an offshore banking expert, they have put out just thousands of articles. And so, so many articles that if someone is searching for something kind of related to offshore banking, but the keyword isn’t, it doesn’t exactly line up. Then Google is very likely to rank Wealth Safe because they see that they’re an authority on anything related to that topic. And because there are relatively few options, there’s lower search volume, Wealth Safe is likely to rank for a whole bunch of keywords that we couldn’t even predict, someone is going to search for.

Josh Strawczynski: 4:46

That is exactly right. And these are some of the big problems that we see our customers falling into or having trouble with. But let’s talk about what you should be doing and it starts with understanding your customers and setting realistic expectations. In the B2B space, generally speaking, a new customer is a high ticket item. They’ve got a high lifetime worth to you and so we strongly recommend, and we start with every customer saying, what is the sale really worth to you? Let’s just say $10,000. Okay, if it’s $10,000 sale, mister Customer, how much money would you be willing to spend to get one of these guys through the door, who is not already going to become a customer?

If I could say to you right now, give me $2,000 and I’ll give you this customer, would you say yes? Understanding that break-even point is going to give you an idea of how many resources you should be allocating in the first place to get these guys through. We like to say to customers, 10%, 20%, even up to 30% is pretty standard for high quality leads. And that gives you a lot of money to start thinking about if we’re really targeting content strategy here, how many articles could you write for say $2,000? Could you have version? If you write them, if you get someone else to write them or whatever it is, it doesn’t really matter.

And so once you have that, it makes it a lot easier to justify in your head, what you’re trying to achieve and how you are trying to achieve it. The next thing we look at is very broad content strategy. If you were the customer, putting yourself in those shoes, what are all the different ways you could search? And then you can jump into things like Reddit, just general Google searches. Dan, one of your favorite tools we mentioned in a previous episode that, helps you see what people are searching through the Google predictive text. What was that? Explain that to me again.

Dan Lemp: 6:48

Keywords Everywhere, it’s a great tool that just plugs into Google’s suggestions where Google makes a drop down of a whole bunch of long tail keywords that people are searching, tells you how many searches it has and which have significant search traffic.

Josh Strawczynski: 7:04

So spend an hour doing those two or three things, we just mentioned and build up an idea of how people might be searching. Even if the keyword data is not incredibly clear, which obviously for our topic today it won’t be, that’s okay. You can use common sense just to order the priority list of content you’re going to make and then start creating really high value content that solves each of those questions.

One of the things that I would really urge you to do is focus on solving questions. When we’re marketing, when we’re selling, this is a recurring theme of all our podcasts. You’re going to be effective when someone has a problem and you are positioning a solution to it. If you’re just going generic, it’s not going to work as well. Dan, I know you have a lot of talks on this point. So let me hand over to you.

Dan Lemp: 7:57

I mean, just one really intuitive thing to do when you don’t have a lot of search traffic is just take 20 minutes, sit down and write down every question. Any customer or any prospective customer has ever asked you and just sit down, writing down questions that you have about your own product that you would have about your service. Anything you can think of, those are good questions to be answering in your content.

Josh Strawczynski: 8:23

Nice. Absolutely right. And you know, when it comes to testing stuff, before you actually implement it, one of the best places to do that is Google ads. Google ads lets you add a whole heap of different keywords and see what sort of demand there is. Now you are going to be a little bit careful here. I don’t want, would not recommend someone who doesn’t understand how Google ads are running out and just trying it out for size, because Google has moved more and more towards broad matching.

One famous example was I did an audit for a gas company, electricity and gas company in Australia. And they were spending money unknowingly on the word fat because they had just used gas as a broad word and Google set up gas and fats are related. So when people were searching for fats, up was coming this energy company. Give it to an expert to do who understands how to test keywords properly. This is becoming more and more relevant because Google has just announced recently they’re pulling back even more visibility from the search terms generated from those Google ads.

But it doesn’t mean that it’s a bad way of testing. And in fact it’s really good if you’ve already got an account, it’s great data in there, but let’s assume they don’t. Then how do you use common sense to work out? What are some of the areas I should be writing copy for? And more importantly, how do you prioritize them in terms of creating that content what’s most important to do today? What’s going to generate results for me.

Dan Lemp: 10:00

I think you need to really shift your focus from, you know going for the jugular and finding the highest search volume possible, to thinking about what kind of content do you need to put out, to position yourself as an industry expert that can talk about the whole range of topics that, are related to your niche and really present yourself as the authority and the industry expert in that space.

You mentioned it, you can go to Reddit and see what kinds of topics and questions people are talking about on Reddit or Cora, anything like that in your niche. See what kind of content they’re asking about and then produce content yourself to answer those kinds of questions. Anything you can do to get into the minds of your customers is a great way to find the kind of content you need to be producing.

Josh Strawczynski: 10:53

It’s actually a really good tool too, that we have been testing recently called Phrase, which will go and pull a lot of that stuff out of Reddit and out of Cora. So I really recommend you go check that out. Dan, one thing I want to finish on because we talk about making a lot of content for a lot of search queries. The big problem though is that 90% of blog posts go unread. So when you’re making content for the people listening today, who are thinking, I can bang out some little short rubbish articles about different terms. What do they need to keep in mind? What should they be aspiring to achieve?

Dan Lemp: 11:29

You want to get your content read and you want it to be sharable . You want it to be so good that people are going to think I’m going to remember this article. And when one of their friends or someone that they know in the industry is thinking about a question they think back to this article that shared with them, it might be something you can use Facebook ads to boost. And if you can do the keyword research and see that there is search traffic, you want to be produced, make sure you’re also covering those points where you know, people are searching, be producing content there as well.

Josh Strawczynski: 12:01

I think that’s a fantastic summary. One of the tricks that we’ve always used to , which probably worth mentioning you can recycle content. You don’t go using huge articles worth of content, but you can reuse the ideas from different articles over and over again. Because just like with this podcast, a lot of the central themes of digital marketing are the same. They relate back to knowing your audience and providing the best possible answer for their search need. Most industries work the same. So don’t hesitate to repeat stuff just on straight out, plagiarize your other articles. That looks like a wrap for today Dan, we’ve covered some really good territory. Thank you very much for putting everything together. I look forward to seeing you on the next one.

Dan Lemp: 12:46

Thanks so much. See you next time, Josh.

About the Author

Dan leads the JMarketing SEO department. An extremely analytical mind, he is fascinated with the questions of 'Why', 'How', and 'Is there a better way'? Through Dan's research and experimentation, JMarketing have unlocked a host of best practices and optimisation tricks for our clients.

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