6 Business Antidotes for Search Engine Miracle Cures

When you lose a noticeable amount of weight, people tend to ask “how did you do it”? They seem disappointed when there’s no miracle – no special voodoo. If you did what we’ve always known to do – exercised and started eating right, the eyes glaze over and visions of sugar plums dance through the head. Yet instant cures with no sustained effort and modest expense are doing fabulous business. Want to separate a lot of gullible shoppers from hard-earned cash at the moment they’re vulnerable and realized they need to make a change? All you have to do is offer a miracle. The catch is, it isn’t real.

Spot the Illusion – Magic Marketing Works Like Magic Diets.

You’ve spent your money, you’ve gotten your miracle elastic bands or vitamin energizers or meal bars or secret diet book, and a little note that says (in very small print) that you still have to put in sustained effort to get real and lasting results. We probably should have known something was wrong when they talked about the human body like it was made up of a handful of simple chemicals and just needed the right mix to suddenly optimize. Diets are not the only area where this kind of shell game is at work.

Look Behind the Curtain – How the SEO Gimmicks Get You.

Internet marketing is exactly that way, too. People are drawn to flashy ads that promise first page search results for the most competitive search terms (or without any specifics on which search terms), and loads of internet traffic, with no sustained effort and only modest cost. In fact, the ads depend on triggering our attitude of “don’t think – what are you waiting for – buy now” – the whole premise being that you don’t have to think about your business in order to grow it. And they get your money right when your client pipeline has trickled off and you’ve realized you need to do something.

Stick With Mainstream Medicine – We Already Know What Works in Internet Marketing.

Instead of acknowledging there are well-documented industry standards for how to grow traffic to your business with internet marketing (heck, the search engines continually publish documentation that outright explains it to the industry, just in case somebody’s got a bolt in his neck), the gimmick peddlers claim they’re using inside relationships with the search engines, special techniques, hidden mystery oils, and secret sauce to achieve results. And it’s bull. It’s just like those phony diet pills. Where’s the fine print? It’s ongoing cost or ongoing effort by you – in other words, it’s the very thing that would have worked in the first place, except you pay out up front to get that information.

Test the Snake Oil – Why Are We Buying This Stuff And They’re Not?

Let’s look at who is NOT buying these things. Anyone who has been a project consultant, project contractor, or done any professional project management work has probably seen the triangle chart. See wikipedia for it, or just google it. The triangle chart says you can get great results, if you’re willing to put in the time and money. Put another way, a contractor will often say “you can have it done fast, effectively, or cheaply – pick two”. The triangle is a metaphor for rationality itself – it says that whenever someone is telling you something different than the triangle, it’s witchcraft – snake oil – miracle cures – voodoo – hocus pocus – nonsense. What’s really bad is that investing your company’s resources in hocus pocus can have unintended consequences. Just like in the movies, the voodoo comes back to bite you in the form of search engine blacklisting, penalties for too many links, etc. By then, your miracle provider is long gone, and has your money, and you’re worse off than before. People who understand the triangle of cost, time, and quality do not invest in magic to run their business.

Eliminate the Need for a Fix – There is No Mystery to Marketing Anymore.

We already know how to lose weight. That information, unlike internet marketing knowledge, has trickled down to the general populace. It took a long time. If you remember the 1950s, when shows like the Brady Bunch featured a giant meat loaf (the size of a 3 year old child) at every meal, you know it wasn’t that long ago that the idea of eating healthy was based on a lot of industry advantageous superstition about getting enough protein, and exercise was for wusses. Now, we know different. And to counteract the lifestyles we created, and out bulging midriffs, we know that a truly healthy diet and regular exercise are almost always effective. Magic beans aren’t. Internet marketing knowledge will take a little while longer to trickle out to the population as a whole, but the gist of it is this: there is no hidden, secret knowledge that only gurus and technical wizards know about. Just because *you* don’t know, doesn’t mean a lot of us don’t know. The knowledge is widely held and easy to grasp.

Don’t Buy the Magic Beans – Internet Traffic Growth Happens Without Tricks.

A steady campaign of content marketing, informed by effective consulting advice, focused on your web site and social media, will build sustainable search optimization. If you don’t know what we just said, it’s not that hard. Get an initial consultation and we’ll explain it to you in plain English. But know this: we refuse to yank your chain with fancy explosions, a thunderous soundtrack, and lots of promises that things will levitate and fly through the air if you just drop a wad of cash on our plate. If you really and truly want that stuff, go to the other guys. They’re easy to find – they write in red, use lots of arrows, and wave stuff around. If you want sound advice, you’re here getting some already, and this was our first example. Contact MadPipe if you would like to get started.

Daniel DiGriz

Daniel DiGriz is a corporate storyteller and Digital Ecologist® at MadPipe, which provides creative direction, marketing leadership in marketing, and campaign direction for firms that want a stronger connection with their audience. A Digital Ecologist® applies strategic principles from both natural and digital ecologies to help organizations thrive across multiple ecosystems. Daniel hosts podcasts, speaks at conferences, and his ideas have appeared in Inc, SmartBlog, MediaPost, Forbes, and Success Magazine.
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