AskPat 660 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: What's up, everybody? Pat Flynn here, and welcome to Episode 660 of AskPat. Thank you so much for joining me today. Happy August to everybody out there. I'm here to help you by answering your online business questions, five days a week.
We have a great question to start off the month with Travis, but before we get to Travis' question, I do want to thank today's sponsor, which is awesome if you're building a team, and that is ziprecruiter.com, because instead of putting job descriptions out for people you're looking for, candidates and what not, onto several different job sites, all you have to do is do it once through ZipRecruiter and with just one or two clicks of a button bam it's sent out to all those job sites for you and they will find the best candidates for your position. It sounds easy because it is. So, you want to check it out. Building your team, no matter how big or small your team is right now, you want to grow, do it right. ziprecruiter.com/pat, and guess what? It's free when you go through that link. So, try it. ziprecruiter.com/pat.
All right, now let's get to today's question from Travis. Here we go.
Travis: Hi, Pat. Thanks so much for your web site and for all the great tools that you have available to us. My name's Travis. I don't currently have a blog created, because I'm feeling paralyzed in the area of keyword research. I want my blog to be an online ministry that impacts lives with daily Bible studies. Eventually, I see that platform growing to include podcasts and other means of communication with my audience, but other than that, I'm stuck—and honestly, I've been stuck at the starting gate longer than I'd like to admit. Do you have tips for someone who wants to get their platform rolling but feels overwhelmed by researching keywords, SEO, and niche-ing down so they can rank in Google? Thanks so much.
Pat Flynn: Hey, Travis. Thank you so much for the question. Thank you so much for your honesty and your vulnerability here, because I know it can be hard to admit sometimes that we, you know, often procrastinate or we're just stuck with something, and so I appreciate you sharing that with us. And I think it's going to help out a lot of people, because a lot of people are in the same boat as you.
So, keyword research: How important is keyword research to the start of your business? I would say out of all the things that need to happen, it is about 5 to 10% important. Let me repeat that: it's about 5 to 10% important.
Now, keyword research is obviously something to be aware of and keyword research is a way for you to get traffic down the road, to be discovered and search engine optimization is key, of course, but it's not everything and if it's something that's holding you back I would just say don't worry about it right now. You could always update things later. That's the thing about SEO. It's not a permanent thing and you can always update things later.
What's most important beyond the keywords is your brand and what your purpose is. You could even have your name: TravisRusco.com if that's available and have that be what the website is. And yes, keywords are not in the domain name but keywords can still show up as you learn them, as you begin to find your voice, as you begin to understand what problems you're solving out there through the description of your website, which can always change; through the titles of blog posts, because those things are found in Google as well, beyond just your homepage.
So, focus on the brand and what it is your purpose is, your mission and maybe it's your name, maybe it's something else, but it doesn't necessarily have to be about keyword research. It doesn't even have to be anything people are searching for. It could be something that is a brand that is unique to you. Just like how Google was before Google became Google; just like how viperchill.com is a website about viral marketing and SEO. Again, it's not in the title. You wouldn't know, but when you land on that site, you then understand quickly what that site is about and that's hopefully what you would share and show on the homepage when people eventually land on your site.
Well, then, the question becomes: How do people find you? Well, even if you had the right keywords, people are not going to find you right away. It takes linking from other sites, it takes creating valuable content and it takes time and patience. So, the most important thing are the relationships that you build and exposure you get from others, whether those are influential people that you've connected with in person or online, whether it's podcasters who you're being a guest on their show or maybe it's vice-versa and they just happen to do a link share. Or, maybe it's a site like medium.com or maybe you write for Huffington Post or find your way in there and, you know, there's episodes of the SPI podcast that can help you do that. Episode 145, smartpassiveincome.com/session145, that's with Kimanzi Constable. He talked about not just how he became a self-published author and did really well and is now on Barnes and Noble and what not. But he talked about how you're able to become a contributing writer on large media sites and that's a great way to get started too.
So, there's a number of different ways to go about getting found and search engine optimization, keywords, I mean, that will come and that only comes, however, after you write content and put yourself out there. So, please do not let the keywords and figuring out, you know, the exact words you're going to use on every single blog post hold you back. What I would do that's very actionable is create a list of 50 things you want to talk about and then start your site, choose your name if you are comfortable with yourself being the center of the brand and knowing that, you know, that's really nothing you can sell at some point because it's your brand, but, you know, later down the road, it might become this big thing. So, is that what you want?
So, maybe it's Mission.com, again, I'm just making this up right now, but it could be something that just has a nice ring to it and sounds good or makes people visualize what it is that you want them to visualize. It just has that idea that mission statement in it, itself, and it has nothing to do with keyword research.
I think the keyword research can come later, in terms of, okay, well, now you've chosen this topic, you're finding your voice and you're looking at topics, sub-topics, about that particular thing, that you can then create blog posts about and then you won't have to worry about having the site up about that because it's already up, but you can then worry about: Okay, well, what should I write about or what should I podcast about and what are some keywords I should include in the title of that post or the title of that blog post based on the number of people who are searching and that's it. You know, keyword research has become less and less important over time. What's become more and more important over time is actually having a conversation with your audience, using existing web sites out there to figure out what's hot and what's missing so that you can cover those same topics in an even better way and start to get a following too.
So, I hope that helps answer your question, Travis, and, you know, please don't be paralyzed by the keyword research. That is not going to be important right now. Just move forward, get that content out there and think about it: every day that you're struggling with putting yourself out there because of a keyword is a day that you're losing out on actually making a difference in somebody else's life. So, you have to move forward.
Travis, thank you so much. I wish you all the best. Please keep us updated on how things are going and I want to send you an AskPat T-shirt for having your question featured here on the show. Again, thank you so much. You'll hear from my assistant Jessica in the next month or so. We'll collect your information and send that over to you, no charge. That's what you get for having your question on the show and if you're listening and you want your question here featured on the show, just head on over to askpat.com. You can ask right there on that page.
And finally, as always, I love to end with a quote and today's quote is from Richard Branson. Short, but sweet: “Screw it, let's do it.” I think that's fitting for this particular topic. All right, thanks so much, take care, and I'll see you on the next episode of AskPat. Bye.
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