The Garner Citizen is a small, locally owned and operated newspaper just south of Raleigh. It has competition from two other papers, both owned by large news concerns not based in the area.
There are words and phrases that any business likes to rank for in search results. One of the most satisfying is “best so-and-so”. As of today, I’m going to start an experiment and see how long it takes for me to get the phrase best newspaper in garner to pull up The Garner Citizen as the #1 organic result.
Consider it a mini test case.
I’ll update this post with tactics and results as the become available.
June 2nd 2010 Update: Well, it’s now at the #1 spot from a variety of locations. I saw that my handy SEOmoz rank tracker showed that it had jumped seven places since the previous week.
So let’s go over the gigantic amount of work it took to accomplish this.
1. I wrote this post with the key phrase in the title tag, the meta description and in the body of the post.
2. I tweeted about it 4 or 5 times over the past month and a half.
3. I wrote one additional article using the same “secrets” I used in step 1 at another site.
When I asked for some help from my Twitter friends yesterday to see what result the Google query: best newspaper in garner was showing at the #1 spot – it socially reinforced the result.
That last part is an increasing important part of what the search engines are considering important. Lots of chatter and linking on Twitter and Facebook will help your site rank better.
The great response to my request for help got me thinking about general social reinforcement of a phrase or keyword by asking people on your social networks to chime in when needed.
I will blog more about that idea after I test out a few more things related to it.
Now the question is, can the Garner Citizen hold on to the phrase “best newspaper in garner” or will their competitors come after them – stay tuned.