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Optimize Your Writing, Not Your Search Engine

writing for spiders

I like Seth Godin because he gives me plenty to think about, something of a reality check.

Take writing for example .  It’s not what it used to be.  Once upon a time, writers wrote what was on their mind for the purpose of sharing experiences – either information or entertainment.

Today, writers have to figure out how to please search engines, while still sounding coherent enough for a human reader to stay interested.  In one of his recent articles, ‘The non-optimized life,’ Seth Godin puts it plainly:

“At some point you realize you’re spending your best energy on optimization, not on creation.”

This is important.  But it is not to say that optimizing is over-rated. Quite the opposite – if you can measure it, then you can certainly improve it and manage it.  Without Google Analytics for example, we wouldn’t be able to measure the performance of our content,  and we certainly wouldn’t know if it needed fixing.

But let’s keep things in the proper perspective.  Writing is only useful, if it is read – by people.  Because only people can act upon what they have read.  I think there is a need for marketing communication writers to remain authentic to their purpose, which is to generate content that is highly relevant and valuable to their readers.  And as they do this in a natural way, search engines will find them quite appealing too!

Isn’t that why Seth’s blog is so highly rated by technorati and other search engines?  He is more concerned about being a good writer than he is about driving traffic to his site.  Thousands of people enjoy reading his excellent articles and they subscribe to his blog (myself included).  As a result, his blog has become the darling of search engines.  Let’s not put the  cart before the horse.

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