Why Bicker Over Semantics?
Many people do not realize it, but search engine optimization is actually an incredibly influential branding tool. Between all of the content out there, social media and bloggers, and different news organizations, those who have gotten to the top of the SERPs have also enjoyed a greater level of exposure. When more people catch wind of a concept, idea, service or product, you then have a higher level of brand recognition and this also brings about a greater level of trust. While many would argue that all branding is, is broad strokes marketing- I tend to disagree with that thought. I believe that you can integrate branding and search engine optimization together in a better way. The two camps are interesting to watch play out this sort of quarrel. If you look it up, you’ll find that some people favor SEO, others favor branding and each one will go to great lengths to explain why one is more impacting than the other- and I have to question why that is so.
Those who decry branding in favor of SEO will tell you that branding is expensive. It’s costly and you have to buy up ads all over the place, billboards, television, radio, movies and newspapers. They tend to focus on the fact that branding as it has been traditionally known, has been geared towards those with deep wallets and big advertising and marketing budgets. But here’s the thing- to give you a small slice of the way that things are tilting- two months after Hulu, an online television site launched, they released their statistics. At that time, Hulu users were streaming well over sixty three million videos.
This is just one website. Never mind the fact that there are many different music sites, online streaming live sites for news, radio, and yes, even television and movies. Then, you get into the blogs, the news sites, all the many different facets of the internet- ready at your disposal.
Seems to me that differentiating branding and search engine optimization is a bit nitpicky, don’t you think? Because if you look at exactly what SEO can do, it can hit every single aspect- apart from perhaps billboards, that the common conception of branding does. So, to me- it doesn’t mean that one is superior to the other, at all- it means that SEO is a newer way of branding on another level. To me, those who promote it in terms of “branding versus SEO” aren’t being entirely truthful and on the level. Consider one of the big arguments that is given for this argument is that “branding is just SO expensive”, but then you consider the time and effort spent working on a properly organized search engine optimization plan- it just does not make sense to me to quibble over the terminology, unless you were perhaps, not producing the search engine results that were actually worth the time you spent.