What Is this new SEO surround sound strategy? I’ve got my good friend, Alisa Meredith, back on the show to talk about it.
Alisa now works at SEMrush, a tool used by online businesses for SEO and content marketing.
The “surround sound strategy” is all about being where the conversation is already happening in your niche.
You can use SEMrush to help you find opportunities, or you can DIY it yourself.
The goal is to look for roundup content published by other blogs or websites about your niche that might mention your competitors, but not you. Then your job is to see if you can reach out to get yourself added.
Ask yourself… Where are people already talking about what you talk about, and how find more ways to get in front of them?
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Welcome to the Blogger Genius Podcast brought to you by MiloTree. Here’s your host, Jillian Leslie.
Jillian Leslie 0:11
Hello, my friends. Welcome back to the Blogger Genius Podcast. I’m your host, Jillian Leslie, I am a serial entrepreneur with my husband, David. And I’m so happy that you are here listening to this, I wanted to give you an update on MiloTree Cart.
This is our payment platform for you creators to sell digital goods easily to your audiences. So paid workshop, membership, coaching, you can get a payment link for any other kinds of product or service you want to sell. We build super simple platforms. So if you do not like complicated technology, this is for you.
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This is again how I see bloggers grow their businesses to six and seven figures. So please again, this is you reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For today’s episode, I have my very good friend, Alisa Meredith back on the show and I just counted this is her seventh appearance. In the past, Alisa has come on the show to talk about Pinterest. But Alisa is now working at SEMrush, which is a very powerful tool that most companies use for SEO.
So, we are talking about a really cool SEO strategy that I had never heard of before, called Surround Sound. And it is all about putting yourself into the conversation where the conversation is already happening. It will make a lot more sense when you listen to the episode.
So without further delay, here is my interview with Alisa Meredith.
What Is This New SEO Surround Sound Strategy?
Alisa Meredith 3:08
Alisa, welcome to the show.
Jillian, it’s so nice to see you again,
You have a new role. And you are now working for a different company. And it is in an area that my audience loves. So will you explain where you are and what you’re doing?
Sure. I am at SEMrush, which many of your listeners are familiar with. And I am working as a product marketing manager in what’s called the channels unit.
And basically, what that means is we’re developing new products that allow agencies specifically to build a service around that and to expand their agency that way. However, the tools are also really useful for the individual in house or agency SEO.
Jillian Leslie 3:59
Will you explain what SEMrush does?
Alisa Meredith 4:03
Yes, I can try it but they do so much. I’ve been there now three months. And I feel like I know about 2% of the features in there. But I think most people think of it as an SEO tool that will help you figure out where you’re ranking where you’re not how you’re doing against the competition.
We have a social media tool. There’s content marketing assistance, there’s a lot in there. We even have some tools like kompyte which is a competitor analysis tool. We have Prowly which is like a PR media. It’s getting bigger all the time and building new things all the time, which is pretty cool.
Jillian Leslie 4:50
I think of it predominantly just from wearing my blogger hat as an SEO tool it is amazing what it can tell you in terms of what keywords to go after, and who is ranking for them and where you might have opportunities. I will say it’s a little intimidating for a one person like blogger, and somewhat expensive.
Very expensive, actually. But it is robust.
Alisa Meredith 5:22
Yes. It’s a great tool.
Jillian Leslie 5:24
But I would argue like every single major company has a subscription to SEMrush.
Alisa Meredith 5:29
Yes, and they might use several different software, but they all do something cool. And yeah, a lot of people really love SEMrush.
But isn’t it like a whole team of people say at like the Gap would be using SEMrush every day doing keyword research, like doing all the stuff to optimize their websites?
Yes. I don’t know, specifically if they’re a customer or not. But yeah, absolutely like that. That kind of thing. Yes, they might have 5, 6, 10, 30 people using that SEMrush subscription to optimize their SEO, to report on that, to publish content and social media. Yes.
And if in fact, you wanted to try it out, don’t you guys offer, what, 7days, 14 days free just to play around? Don’t listen to this. But if you want to do some hardcore, SEO research sign up, get your free days go in there and go crazy.
I believe so. I think I’ve actually done that myself. And there is a free version you can continue to use it. It will limit how much information you can pull out of there.
Got it. So what I love about having you back, you’ve been on my show, I need to count how many times I think you are my most popular guest. And most of the time in the past, we have talked about Pinterest because you were at Tailwind. And I still think of you as a Pinterest expert.
Jillian Leslie 7:04
However, what is so interesting, I was just sharing this with you in terms of my podcast episodes that people are really excited about where I get like, a huge bump in people listening are now all about SEO. So it had been Pinterest.
My audience is predominantly bloggers, content creators, shop owners, and Pinterest was driving so much traffic. And today, Pinterest is pivoting and rolling out different products to keep people on the platform. So if you want traffic today, you’re digging into SEO.
Alisa Meredith 7:47
Is that what your audience will say as to why they’re changing their priorities of it?
Jillian Leslie 7:52
I think so. Because again, what is currency as a blogger or content creator? Traffic. And they also say use Instagram, but Instagram is not going to drive traffic, Instagram you can use for a variety of other things. And it used to be Pinterest drove traffic.
So if you want to make money as blogger, what do you need? Traffic.
Alisa Meredith 8:17
Jillian Leslie 8:20
Because it’s not impossible to get traffic from Pinterest today, it’s just a little more tricky convoluted, you might not know exactly how Pinterest is seeing your site or whether they’re going to show your pins. I think today, SEO is much more straightforward.
Alisa Meredith 8:38
I think if what you’re going for is traffic. Yes, absolutely SEO is it. It’s not going to be Instagram. And it’s not going to be Pinterest anymore, either.
So let’s talk about a strategy that you shared with me that I thought was super powerful that can work for a variety of content creators. People who sell products, like really I thought this was really eye opening.
Oh, cool. I’d be happy to. So this is a concept and a tool called Surround Sound. So when we’re talking about Surround Sound SEO, the original way you and I learned about surround sound was probably at the movie theater. That sound just surrounds you. It makes you just feel like you’re right in it.
Well with surround sound SEO and some people will do surround sound marketing, which is expanded from there across different platforms. But with SEO, it means that you’re not going to stop it just ranking your site for your important keywords.
You’re actually going to look at who else is ranking for those keywords and see if you can get them to mention you as well. So for instance, when you’re looking for best hair care products for curly hair.
Jillian Leslie 10:04
Which is like my favorite topic ever.
Alisa Meredith 10:08
I know. You want your site to rank absolutely be great if you could be number one, but then you’re going to notice a lot of the results for a search like that are not the brands themselves because if you’re looking for that kind of thing.
If you’re looking for the best hair care products for curly hair, you’re not necessarily going to trust a hair care brand. You want other people to tell you what is the best? Because what do you do in real life? You and I, we talk to each other? You gave me a brand to check out a minute ago, I gave you a brand to checkout.
If I had seen an ad for them, I’d go in with a little bit more skepticism. But because I know and trust you. Those are big points in their favor already. So, it translates really well online. Because people are asking, in a sense, what is the best hair care product for my curly hair?
They might ask in person too but they’re going to ask Google. So what they’re going to look for is a trusted source or at least a third party objective source that’s going to tell them what are the best products I should try. And that often will look like a list article.
So, it might be let’s say, a blogger who writes about curly hair.
It could be a blogger.
Jillian Leslie 11:30
It could be another site about hair, all these different sites that are collating and creating, who are like review sites.
Alisa Meredith 11:49
Review sites, it could be like a BuzzFeed article, or maybe like glamour.com, all these publications that if you think about it, especially if you are a new company, a new brand, you’re probably never going to outrank a glamour.com. Nobody is ever going to outrank BuzzFeed.
So, you’re looking for these opportunities where you can become part of those lists, so that when people are searching, and it’s specifically those high intent keywords, because you might look for how to style curly hair.
But when you’re in that mindset, you’re not thinking, I need to go buy something for my curly hair. It’s those high intent keywords, like maybe most affordable, curly hair products, those are the keywords that people use when they’re ready to pull their wallets out. So those are the ones we want to rank our sites for.
But also just make sure you’re everywhere that people are going to see when they use those search terms.
That is the thing that I thought was very powerful when you share this concept with me, which is you want to be where the conversation is happening. So it takes the focus off of you and your business and says, hey, people are talking about this. I’m in this space.
Jillian Leslie 13:15
I want to be there with a list of other people, who are doing what I’m doing. But that’s where people are making their decisions. They’re not necessarily searching for me or you’re right.
I shared with you some random hair care product, but like you don’t know this product, you’re not searching for it, but you might find it in a roundup list especially there’s one thing that I don’t like are strong smells, so I bought this product. It doesn’t have a strong smell.
But if I were searching for like natural smelling hair care products, and it showed up I might be willing to buy it.
Alisa Meredith 14:02
Yes. Especially if it was on somebody else’s website, somebody without an agenda.
It was interesting because I said to you, I challenged you and I said okay, but if I’m the blogger, how does this work? Because let’s say I’m not a hair care product company, I just am a parenting blogger. And you said, let’s do some searching like what are the best parenting blogs?
Jillian Leslie 14:31
And then I go and then we did. And guess what? There are roundup posts that people have put together of the best parenting blogs. And then I said oh, right. What if though, I’m a food blogger, let’s say I blog about Italian food, and we did some searching and guess what? There are round-ups of the best Italian food blogs.
Alisa Meredith 14:54
You are a hard sell. But we did it.
I know. I was initially like hmm you’re working with these big brands. And I’m talking to moms who have blogs like how can this help that?
It was a great question. I’m glad we went through that. Because like you said, we have a theory now that this tool works great for SAS company. So software as a service, it works great for a direct-to-consumer brand like a Casper mattress or something.
But that was a great conversation we had about how to make this work for bloggers, too.
Yeah, so just after we had our conversation, I had coffee with a good friend of mine here in Austin, and she owns a wedding venue like one of those cool barns if you want a cool Texan barn, modern cool wedding, where the bride is wearing a wedding dress and cowboy boots.
Jillian Leslie 15:48
You know what I’m talking about their barrel bouquet. And she said to me, do I know anybody who can help her get into running ads on Facebook and Instagram, and I could see how overwhelmed she felt.
And I said what I recommend you do is go home and do a search of best barn wedding venues in Austin, or Texas, or rustic weddings, whatever. And I went home and did it just to see. And lo and behold, there were services, there are sites that have wedding venues. But there are also blogs that talk about it.
And I said to her go reach out. Some of the services, you have to pay to have your venue listed. But some of these blogs, who knows, reach out to them. Because the truth is my friend’s wedding venue was awesome.
And so these bloggers would benefit by including her venue, in their blog posts, it just makes it richer. And this is the kind of place like you want to add to your blog post. And so therefore, it’s like a win win.
And it was interesting, it was because we had had this conversation like nobody is searching necessarily for her specific venue. Because I’m trying to remember the name because I want to do a shout out to her. I think it’s called Two Wishes Ranch or something like that. I’ll put it in the show notes.
But it’s like, I would never think to search for that. But I want to be a bride in Austin or in this area. And then I’m going to search for that. And I want it to show up. Or she would want this to show up in a variety of results. Where a bride would be looking for this.
Alisa Meredith 17:40
Jillian Leslie 17:41
It gets you out of your own business, weirdly. And gets you to think about how to participate in the conversation.
Alisa Meredith 17:49
Absolutely. And some people call it share of voice, or SERP coverage. So, coverage in the search engine. But it really is. It is about being where people are looking and where people are talking about these solutions.
And I love that you share this with your friend because what I hope for her is that she can reach out to one of these bloggers and build a relationship with that person. So not just getting listed in the 10 best Austin wedding listicle.
But maybe if she offers a tour of her facility or something that creates this kind of relationship that can benefit you both long term.
So when she’s thinking about, doing a feature on a wedding venue, who’s going to come to mind, it’s not the person that she randomly googled and added to her article. It’s the one that she built this relationship with, so it can continue to build on itself.
And so rather than doing one off, cold outreach, you actually have these relationships with the people who are starting the conversations.
I wanted to take a short break to talk about my free blog post checklist download. So you can get this milotree.com/blogpostchecklist and I go through all of the things you need to incorporate into your blog post.
Most people I know print it out, put it on their desk, and when they go write a new blog post, they just go right down the list to make sure they’ve done everything they need to optimize their blog posts. So again, go grab it milotree.com/blogpostchecklist. And now back to the show.
Alisa Meredith 19:42
I think that as the internet has gotten so big. We also need to shrink it down and get small. It’s a great way to be building these relationships. So let’s say I am a parenting blogger and like I start saying best parenting blogs.
Jillian Leslie 20:07
What is your recommendation in terms of reaching out to them or developing a relationship with them without sounding so I don’t know, spammy? Or to say like, “Hey, would you include my blog in your list?” What’s your thought about that?
I am definitely not an outreach specialists, we have a blog post that has some exact email scripts that you can use for that.
Alisa Meredith 20:37
I’ll try to link to that.
Because it goes all the way from being very detailed to being very direct. So it was say, you have a podcast, and you would like to get listed in somebody else’s list of podcasts, then you could approach that person and offer to have them on your show.
And then you build that conversation and all of a sudden, what do you know? You’re on that list? So, you need to make sure that you’re giving before you’re asking. So, whatever that means for you is kind of what you need to figure out.
And I will say that to me is the harder part, finding the opportunities is so easy, especially because of surround sound, the tool that we have. It’s that follow through which a lot of companies do have link builders on their team, and this is perfect for them.
They have their systems in place, and they can do it easily. When we’re talking to bloggers, it’s kind of a new skill. So I’m going to want to give you that link. And you’ll be able to use some of those scripts that are proven to work.
I would say that in my experience, also interviewing other guests. One thought I would put out there is let’s say, instead of going after the best parenting blogs, maybe you’re in more of a niche, or you can speak to toddlers, or something like that.
Jillian Leslie 22:06
Maybe that big list, it’s like high search, go after the smaller opportunities.
Alisa Meredith 22:15
Yes, absolutely. And I think sometimes when people are doing traditional link building there, put a lot of emphasis on the domain authority.
Can you explain what you mean, what domain authority is?
Okay, I will try. But this is not my area of expertise. So basically, Google trusts this domain, they display their results in this SERPs often. So like, Wikipedia, obviously, very high domain authority, because everything you search, that’s what comes up first. But that’s not always the most valuable for our purposes.
For being in that conversation, for being seen for those high intent keywords. A lot of times those are not super high domain authority sites, which also is good, because you have then an opportunity, like more opportunity to get a conversation with these people and to develop a relationship and get those links.
Jillian Leslie 23:19
Absolutely. By the way a search engine result page, just want to say it’s like what it looks like on Google. Also, here’s the strategy.
So, I would say yes, get smaller. You don’t have to go after those big sites, you’ll probably have more success with the smaller sites, and especially to build that relationship. But you could create a roundup post and put it on your blog.
Alisa Meredith 23:46
Yes, you could. And you probably should.
Jillian Leslie 23:49
Exactly. So let’s talk about that. Because we had talked about this previously, and I kind of looked at you skeptically. Like, can you do this? Let’s say, I’m a parenting blogger, but let’s say, I can talk about toys or something like maybe I do a roundup of best blogs that talk about toys.
Maybe it could be my direct competitors. And hey, you know what, the internet is a really big place. And I always think that you look cool when you support your “competition”.
Alisa Meredith 24:22
Jillian Leslie 24:24
Maybe though you pick a sub topic and you go, “Hey, let’s dig in who talks about toys?”
Alisa Meredith 24:31
Or you could talk about the best toddler toys. You as a blogger, you’re that authority on that? What I mean, you can do affiliate links or not, but people are searching for that. And the people who are searching for that are the ones who would also love to read your blog.
Jillian Leslie 24:48
I love that. I love that.
Alisa Meredith 24:51
So can I tell you a little bit about the tool? Because I’m excited about it..
Jillian Leslie 24:53
Please, please, please, please, please. Yes.
Alisa Meredith 24:56
So, the way it works is you put in your keyword you want to rank for, and again, we’re talking about those super high intense, like the words people use right before they buy. So best, cheapest, fastest, whatever that adjective is that gets people into your product.
And then you put in your domain, and your brand name, you put in your competitors and their domain names.
And then what the tool does is it will search the top 10, 20 or 30 rankings for each of those keywords you put in, and it will look to see, do those domains and the pages at that rank for those keywords? Do they mention your competitors? If they do, do they give their competitors a link?
Even more important for us probably is are they mentioning you? And is there a link with that mention? Or could you maybe send them a quick email and say, “Hey, thanks for mentioning us. I would love it if you could just add this link for me.”
Then you can also look at what kind of a mention is it. Is it a good mention? Is it a bad mention? Is it your number 30 on a list of 30 best kindergarten bloggers? Is there something you could do to build a relationship with that person so that they would move you up to number one?
Or if you have a product like an eBook or something you can offer to send it to them so that they can honestly say, “Oh, no, this is the best one, we need to move it up to number one.”
So it really pulls out the opportunities for you. And then you can do what you need with them. And then you’ll see how your visibility for your search terms goes up.
Jillian Leslie 26:39
Now, here’s the question. Is that part of the free version of SEMrush?
Alisa Meredith 26:45
You can because it’s in beta right now if you have a free SEMrush account, a trial or just the free. Yeah, you can use it.
Jillian Leslie 26:54
Alisa Meredith 26:55
Yeah. So if you’re in SEMrush, you’re going to look through the menu item, which is “Extra Tools” and you’ll see “Surround Sound” right there.
Okay. So definitely, I will be trying that out.
Oh, good. Let me know what you think.
Jillian Leslie 27:12
Absolutely. Because again, it’s like finding these opportunities, and especially if you’re a solopreneur. And you have to be crafting these emails, you want to pick opportunities that you think you can have success with.
Alisa Meredith 27:26
Yes. And you’ll be able to see to how much estimated traffic that page is getting for those keywords. So you’ll be able to kind of prioritize which ones will be most important to you.
Jillian Leslie 27:40
Yes, absolutely. And I think that it’s interesting balance between I want for me. And I also want to build a real relationship say with you and this is one thing too, that just came up in my last SEO podcast, which is one thing that you don’t want to be doing is, “Hey, blogger, I’ll link to you, you link to me.”
Which is weird, because that would be such an easy way to say, “Hey, it’s a mutual win win.” Like we can be friends this can be all good and copacetic. However, from what I understand, Google does not like that. And it doesn’t like reciprocal links. Do you know anything about this?
Alisa Meredith 28:29
I have heard that as well. I can’t speak to whether that’s true or not. But that is an issue with something I have seen bloggers do is, “Hey, I’m about to have a guest post on this fancy blog. Would you like me to link to you?”
So when you have those relationships, you’re going to come to mind when there are these opportunities, because it might be part of an exchange of some kind. But it will be a direct exchange. There’ll be different sites. And sometimes it’s just because people want to help each other out.
Jillian Leslie 29:11
I like that. I like that. I’m a big believer in karma. I’m weirdly a big believer in karma on the internet.
Alisa Meredith 29:20
Well, it’s a small world in a lot of ways.
Jillian Leslie 29:22
Here’s the thing, even though the world is really big, the people who are doing what you’re doing well, it seems like there are so many competitors. The truth is, I see the same people at the same conferences that I go to year after year.
Alisa Meredith 29:25
Jillian Leslie 29:34
I feel like Alisa, you and I, we run in similar circles.
Alisa Meredith 29:44
Jillian Leslie 29:44
We know many of the same people. So I feel like if I help you out, then chances are you’re going to help me out or you’re going to say something nice about me to somebody else. Like it’s important to just put that out there.
Alisa Meredith 30:05
Oh, yeah. If I’m a person who always emails you saying, “Hey, I need a link from my site.” Which I have gotten these emails. And that’s what it says, I need a link, then everyone’s going to know that. Yes. And it’s not a good look.
Jillian Leslie 30:22
But I do feel like there are ways to help others. It’s funny, it’s the difference between a scarcity mindset and an abundant mindset. It’s so interesting. So I’m coaching these women, these bloggers, creators, on setting up, as you know, paid workshops and memberships.
And it becomes in certain ways, like a little bit of a therapy session. And I was recently talking to a woman who didn’t want to give away her best stuff. And I said, “No, please give it away. Because you’ll get it back tenfold. I don’t know how it’s going to come back to you.”
A couple of times in our conversation, I could feel that sense of scarcity. And I would literally stop her and go, “I’m feeling scarcity, put some abundance in there.”
Alisa Meredith 31:21
It’s great. I feel like that’s something that we, as marketers have been wrestling with, with our clients and so many other people for years and years is that, but if I give it away, they won’t need to hire me. No, 99% of people don’t want to do it.
Absolutely. Exactly. Like, hey, I’ll teach you how to do it. Or I can do it for you. And the better I teach you how to do it, you will see, I’m an expert at this therefore you’ll hire me.
You don’t want to spend your time doing this.
Absolutely. And it’s funny. So this is an example. For people I’m helping set up paid workshops. I say, what is a bonus, you could offer your attendees, that’s a little goes a little above and beyond.
Yes. You did this with me.
Jillian Leslie 32:12
Yeah, you give a little bit of personal attention. And it’s so interesting how people respond to that, because certain people go, “That sounds really cool.” And then I say, it doesn’t have to be a lot maybe they take a photo of what they’re working on.
And you give them three bullet points, just a little bit of feedback. But it’s personal. But it’s not like you’re getting on an hour long call. And they go, “Oh, that sounds like a great idea.”
And then other people will say to me, “What if everybody takes me up on it?” And I say that would be awesome, because that’s how you build that relationship. And that’s how they buy from you again.
Alisa Meredith 32:48
I can tell you from experience that they don’t all do it. I think that one person takes me up on it.
Jillian Leslie 32:57
Exactly. However, you look amazing that you are willing to go above and beyond. And so it’s kind of like shifting that mindset. So in terms of being strategic, it is about maybe writing.
You’re not binding that roundup post that somehow could involve you to then go build that relationship with that blogger or that website, that editor. Whatever, go create it yourself and give value away to other bloggers in your space.
Again, keep your own boundaries and don’t give away stuff that could hurt somehow I don’t know, you focus on some competitor, and you don’t write enough about yourself, because there are certain people I talked to who don’t know how to advocate for themselves. So it is this fine balance.
Alisa Meredith 33:51
Jillian Leslie 33:52
Of like, you want to shine, but you also want to share the spotlight.
Alisa Meredith 33:57
I think if you keep in mind, who you’re talking to, and what you’re trying to provide for them, it makes it easier. So if you’re telling people here are the reasons you’d want to read these three parenting blogs, but you’re not giving them the reason they want you to read yours, that’s not all the information they need.
So, I can kind of get you out of your head thinking, Oh, I don’t want to talk about myself and be selfish. No, this is information people need. So, just give it.
I’m always impressed with the food blogger who sells meal plans, who’s in his specific niche, who sells other people’s meal plans along with their own meal plans in other food niches. So, let’s say I am a keto food blogger.
Jillian Leslie 34:49
And I then have meal plans for keto people but then I say hey, if you’re not keto, hey, how about these other food plans for vegans? Or for who knows what other kinds of diets gluten free, or whatever.
I’m not that, but I’m this. So buy my product, but if that doesn’t work for you, here’s some other ones that I recommend and their affiliates. So I’m making money, but I’m supporting their business. And to me, that is the win win.
Alisa Meredith 35:24
Yeah, that’s fantastic.
So those are the opportunities that I would say, put yourself shine the light on you, especially if it’s your blog and your business, but be willing to spread that light and shine it on others as well. And again, believe in abundance and believe in making friends.
Jillian Leslie 35:49
Because I personally, I don’t know about your experience. And I do hear horror stories. But I have to say some of my closest friends like you, are people I’ve met you in person once. Is that right?
Alisa Meredith 36:02
Yes. That’s it.
Jillian Leslie 36:04
And yet, when I think about who I get excited to talk to you, you are so high on that list.
Alisa Meredith 36:11
And we talk about everything.
Jillian Leslie 36:13
Yeah we do. Oh, my God, there’s nothing I wouldn’t share with you. There is something really powerful. Some of the people I have met online have been awesome people. And I love it too when people share with each other what’s working for their business.
Alisa Meredith 36:33
Yes. That is the ultimate generosity.
Like I have found this is a hypothetical, like an opt-in that does this. And I’ve gotten great response from it. In fact, the people that come on my podcast who share that stuff, I’m always so appreciative to say it’s working for you, it could work for somebody else.
Jillian Leslie 36:56
So if we’re just thinking about surround sound, for me, my big takeaway is that it kind of gets you out of your own business. And makes you say, hey, where are the people who are already talking about this? And how do I get into that?
For example, I had somebody come on to talk about Pinterest trends. And it’s that idea of look out 30 to 60 days, where are people going to be? What holidays are they going to be celebrating?
Maybe they’re going to be on summer vacation. How can I attach my product, service, blog, whatever to that? And I feel like you’re saying the same thing.
Alisa Meredith 37:46
Yes, kind of like this conversation is already happening. Pages, domains are already ranking for your keywords. So go there. Yes, rank your own site, but also go where the action is already happening.
Exactly. Because one thing that people talk about is SEO is a long game. So the blog post you’re writing today and publishing today, you might not see any traction for three months, it might take a year for that blog post to rank.
Jillian Leslie 38:15
So, how can you speed that up? I love that, go find where people are talking about this and see if there’s a way a kind way, a more gentle way to get yourself mentioned in that. And it relates in a weird way too when I’m talking to people about setting up memberships with MiloTree Easy Payments, there’s my little plug.
Alisa Meredith 38:42
I love it.
Jillian Leslie 38:44
What I say is, you don’t necessarily need to put your membership on some sort of platform, go use a Facebook group to start, go do that. Because you know what people are already on Facebook.
So if I say go join my group, maybe it’s a private group, you pay to get into this to join my membership. Chances are, you’re going to have much more success with people showing up, than hey, go download this app on your phone and then go figure out how to get into the group.
Again, I say this all the time go where the people are.
Alisa Meredith 39:22
And I think that sounds so simple, but I also think it goes against what a lot of marketers have been saying for a long time, which is don’t build your home on rented land. Which sounds so sensible. Don’t make your whole business rely on a site that you can’t control.
Yes, we all need to have our own place online that we control, we need to have our own email list. However, like you said it is so much harder to get somebody to your blog to a separate platform to an app on your phone that you forgot you downloaded than it is to get them to go where they’re already going.
And that is interesting because that is an interesting tension. I agree with you. And I say the same thing like, don’t just be an Instagramer. So you do need to be on a variety of platforms, you do need to have a place on the internet that’s yours that’s your site that nobody can take away from you.
Jillian Leslie 40:26
You do need to build your email list. Because those people you can contact in a much more intimate way, maybe you can DM them on Instagram, for example, but just putting up a post on Instagram or a story. It’s just not as personal as showing up in their inbox. So I think it is about nuance.
Alisa Meredith 40:50
Yes. So you and I both know, Mark Schaefer. I think he’s brilliant. And he will sometimes post an entire post on LinkedIn. And people will say that don’t build your home on rented land. Well, okay. But are people having conversations on my blog? Or are they having conversations on LinkedIn?
He used to get tons of comments on his blog. Now not so much, because that’s just not how people are acting anymore. We have to pay attention to what people want and how they’re using different platforms.
And Mark has been on my podcast, and I’ll link to that episode, he’s been on twice. Maybe once. I don’t know, I’ll link to it. But yeah, absolutely. You’re totally right. So it is about being strategic.
Jillian Leslie 41:44
And then maybe what you do is you take that post on LinkedIn, and you maybe write a bigger post on your blog that you can then optimize for SEO and get people to join your email list.
Alisa Meredith 41:54
Jillian Leslie 41:55
So it is about I think, nuance and strategy. And providing stuff that people are looking for.
Alisa Meredith 42:06
Well, yes. That’s just for table steaks.
Absolutely. Alisa, as you learn more in your new job about SEO, will you come back to be sharing more of these strategies? Because you definitely opened my eyes for example, you’ve inspired me to look for where I can be in roundups of blogger podcasts or creator podcasts or entrepreneur podcasts.
Jillian Leslie 42:38
Because, actually, there had been people who’ve said, I found you because you were in a round up of like female podcasters talking about business.
Alisa Meredith 42:49
In fact, you’ve inspired me to go say, “Hey, if I can get myself in those places, more people will find me.” I had somebody on my podcast who said something that I thought was really powerful, which is, “Don’t change your message change your audience.”
Jillian Leslie 43:12
So therefore, you are the person who’s the expert at parenting. What other audiences can you get in front of with that message? So how do you find new ways to find new audiences? And one way is to be finding again, where the conversation is going.
Alisa Meredith 43:35
And using other people’s audiences.
Jillian Leslie 43:37
And using other people’s audiences. Absolutely. Alisa, if people have questions about this, want to reach out. Want to learn more about SEMrush anything. How can they do that?
Alisa Meredith 43:50
Yes, so Twitter is a good place, alisammeredith. Same on Instagram. Those are probably be the best places or you can find me on LinkedIn, there aren’t that many Alisa’s on LinkedIn.
Awesome. You made a joke about this. But I do think that you’re right on the money, which a lot of my blogger audience was all like Pinterest, Pinterest, Pinterest all the time. And now because they want traffic, they’ve moved over to SEO.
Jillian Leslie 44:25
And I feel like you’ve made this pivot in terms of moving from Pinterest to be more SEO focused. So I feel like you’re ahead of the game.
Alisa Meredith 44:34
I’m just keeping up with Jillian’s audience.
Jillian Leslie 44:37
I love that. Well, you will definitely be back to talk more about traffic and SEO and all of that good stuff. But I feel like what’s been nice about this conversation is digging in to strategies that people might not have thought of.
Alisa Meredith 44:55
And I love being able to have a conversation with you about SEO because you know a lot more about it than I do. And it’s helpful for me too.
Especially when we started to go, how can we put this on the lens of the blogger? How can this work for a blogger, and not for just a big brand?
Jillian Leslie 45:14
Well, Alisa, thank you so much for coming back on the show.
Alisa Meredith 45:18
Thank you. See you soon.
Jillian Leslie 45:20
I hope you guys liked this episode, I have to say that recently, after recording this, I did a Google search for the best blogger podcasts. And there were some roundups, some of which I was not included in and lo and behold, I reached out to them, and two of them included me in their roundups. So this is a very doable strategy.
Now in terms of digital products, the one I recommend everybody start with is a paid workshop. And you might be thinking, oh, but I don’t have an idea for my paid workshop. Well, guess what? I have a free download for you.
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