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Talks and Interviews with The Brand SERP Guy » Brand SERPs » How Important is Brand Messaging in Building Your Brand

How Important is Brand Messaging in Building Your Brand

Welcome back to the Leadership Stack Podcast! This is our third episode with Mr. Jason Barnard. Our guest and Mr. CEO at 22, Sean Si, will be talking about digital marketing.

Learn what a SERP (Search Engine Results Page) is, why should you look good on the search engine results page, and how can it help your company get potential leads and visibility. Catch all of the answers in this brand-new episode of the Leadership Stack Podcast!

SERP 101: Building Your Brand With Jason Barnard

Jason’s Journey From Mauritius To Creating and Organising His Brand SERP and Converting More Clients

[00:00:00] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): I will bet my bottom dollar that the message you’ve worked so hard to build on your own website and on your social channels is not reflected accurately by Google, that your brand message on that Brand SERP is distorted and it doesn’t need to be, you can actually control it. Google wants to show your brand message. If it can understand your brand message and your brand message is relevant and helpful to your audience, it will show the exact brand message you want and it’s up to you to make sure that Google knows what it is it should be presenting.

[00:00:32] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): So, then what I eventually realised was there was no point in trying to find people who could do specific jobs. I needed to find people and then fit the jobs to them. So, what I ended up doing is doing interviews for jobs that I advertise and then taking just the people that I thought, yeah, this is going to work out, we’re going to get on, and then saying to them, what do you like doing? What don’t you like doing?

[00:00:54] Sean Si: So, what happened after this second company was taken from you? You mentioned you started another one, is it an animation company as well?

[00:01:01] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): No. Well, I was stuck in Mauritius with no money and no work permit and I couldn’t work. So, I had to work online. So basically, I just pitched to people to do work and I pitched them saying I built this blue dog and yellow koala sites to 5 million visits a month, a million of them coming from Google because we ranked number one for kids games, preschool games, all preschool songs, all of these kind of very popular keywords. We were pulling in a million kids a month through Google alone for free.

[00:01:31] Sean Si: Good thing you’re a good guy. 

[00:01:34] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And so, I pitched for work and said, if I can do that for a blue dog and a yellow koala, think what I can do for your car company or your printing company or whatever it might be. And I created a company that just did SEO (Search Engine Optimisation), getting companies to the top of Google from Mauritius working with companies in the UK because obviously from my perspective, I would get better rates in the UK than I would be getting in Mauritius, so I worked in the UK or for people in the UK and France in fact was profitable for me and then I came back to France. I mean, this is the nice segues into kind of The Brand SERP Guy. I came back to France, had to close the company that I created in Mauritius, and created a new company in France. But that new company was my own name, it was Jason Barnard EIRL, which is a legal format, which is just me and I thought, I don’t want a team anymore. I’m just going to work on my own. And I would go to pitch to clients. I would go in, I would say, we’re going to do this great digital strategy. Woohoo. This is going to be amazing. I’m going to get you a million visits a month and I walk out and I would think that’s nailed, I would have given them my business card. I would walk out of the meeting and I think that’s a sold account. That’s it I’ve done that. And 50% of the time they didn’t sign but they had seemed so enthusiastic and I didn’t know why. And then one day, one of my clients said to me “Actually, you know what we did as soon as you walked out of the room, we searched your name, what came up?”

[00:02:55] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Oh, a blue dog. We thought it was funny, but I bet my bottom dollar, the other clients that didn’t sign thought I’m not going to hand my digital marketing strategy to a cartoon blue dog. So, I then realised that that business card that I was giving them that I had spent money designing and getting printed and I thought this is brilliant and it makes me look so professional, people would just go and search my name and find a blue dog and that was my business card, not the physical one. My business card was what appeared when you search Jason Barnard on Google and if you search that now, you’ll see that it now looks incredibly impressive.

[00:03:26] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): I decided that I would make that Brand SERP, that search engine results page for my name show me as a digital marketer first and a blue dog second in order to convert more clients. And in fact, what ended up happening is I went from 50% to 80% conversions in those situations where I’d sold face-to-face.

[00:03:44] Sean Si: 80% conversion is actually very, very good. 

[00:03:47] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Yeah. I mean, 80% from the moment when they said as I left the office “Yes. We’re going to sign with you.”, so it’s not actually that good. 

It Is Important To Make Sure That Google Understands The Brand Message You Are trying To Express And Project To Your Audience

[00:03:54] Sean Si: And a lot of people miss that out don’t they? When people search for their name or their company name, there’s just stuff that gets in there that is not something that the person or the company would want in their brand. What led you to focusing on being The Brand SERP Guy? 

[00:04:12] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Well, I mean and that’s the interesting point and that’s great question is from saying actually I didn’t want the blue dog to be so prominent. It’s not that I didn’t want it there, I don’t want to deny that I was a blue dog, but it’s now relegated to a little image in the Knowledge Panel on the right-hand side and the left-hand side is dominated by digital marketing stuff, The Brand SERP Guy, the Knowledge Panel Guy. Basically, me expressing the brand message I want to project to my audience and the brand message I’ve built up so carefully on my own site, on my social media platforms, on every piece of content I publish, and in this podcast, The Brand SERP Guy, Jason Barnard, does Brand SERPs. He is a specialist in what appears when your audience Googles your brand name or your personal name and that brand message is reflected in my Brand SERP. And if you look up your own company name, I will bet my bottom dollar that the message you’ve worked so hard to build on your own website and on your social channels is not reflected accurately by Google, that your brand message on that Brand SERP is distorted and it doesn’t need to be, you can actually control it. Google wants to show your brand message. If it can understand your brand message and your brand message is relevant and helpful to your audience, it will show the exact brand message you want and it’s up to you to make sure that Google knows what it is it should be presenting to your audience because what’s Google trying to do with that, when somebody searches your brand name, they’re trying to get to your site to find out more about you. Google wants to show them, your audience who are a subset of its users, the information and the opportunity such as videos, Twitter Boxes, Knowledge Panels, links to your site, sitelinks to the login page on you or the Contact Page or the Newsletter Page. It wants to show all of these things if they are helpful, relevant, and useful to your audience. All you have to do is demonstrate in your videos, your Twitter Boxes, your Contact Page, your Newsletter Page are helpful and valuable to your audience searching your name on Google.

You Are Responsible To Making Sure Your Brand Message Is Clear And Easy For Google To Digest And Understand

[00:06:04] Sean Si: You’re up there. You see all of these things, you are the expert. But for someone who’s tuning in, they’re already scratching their heads and saying, what is that? So, how do you make sure, and a lot of business owners they think, hey, it’s Google’s job, you know, I got stuff out there. It’s there and it’s Google’s job to sort this out, but how do we get from that point, that kind of perspective, and mindset to what you’re saying to demonstrate that value to your audience so that it’s actually what Google is showing?

[00:06:38] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Right. Yeah. Well, baby steps I think is the answer to that. You start, if your site’s ranking number one, which it should for your brand name or your personal name, you want to make sure that that blue link, the first blue link, says what you wanted to say about your brand.

It is Important to Organise Your Website Content Accordingly Using Blue Widgets and Rich Sitelinks to Clearly Define Different Pieces of Your Content and for Google to Easily Digest and Understand Your Brand Message

[00:06:55] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And for example, if you sell blue widgets, there is a tradition for people to say, we sell blue widgets and then the brand name goes at the end. But in fact, it would be more pertinent for your audience for you to communicate your brand message right from that moment. Then the description underneath that that Google shows, you can control that on your webpage by giving Google the description you want it to show, the title you want it to show. And much of the time, if it’s relevant if it’s valid, Google will show the title and the description that you ask it to show in it, to just have it in your page, ask your technician or your developer what meta titles and meta descriptions are, make sure that the content in the page reflects accurately, who you are, what you’re doing, who your audience is, and Google will show what you want more or less. 

[00:07:40] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Right underneath that you’ve got what I call the Rich Sitelinks which are the blue links with the little text underneath that link through to your Contact Page, your Newsletter Page, your Blog Page, your About Us Page. Google shows them when your site is well organised and when the content within the pages is clearly defined and it knows that that content will be helpful to your users. For example, Login Page, Newsletter Page typically very useful for your audience. If it doesn’t show them, that simply means your site is badly organised and Google doesn’t understand that. And as you say, people think, well, it’s Google’s problem. It’s not, it’s your problem because it’s your brand message that’s being lost. Because if you think about it, that little blue link with the description underneath is just the start of your brand message. Why should you subscribe to my Newsletter? About us, what do you want to know about us? Log in, come in, start working with the platform, do whatever it is you need to do, look at your orders, whatever it might be.

When Google isn’t showing the brand message you want it to show on your Brand SERP, it’s a problem you need to deal with because it’s your brand message that’s being lost.

Jason barnard (the brand serp guy)

[00:08:29] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): All of that is part of your brand message. How you express that to your audience who are searching on Google for your name to come to your website, either as a prospect or as an existing client. And I think people forget that a lot of the people searching your brand name are simply navigating to your website and they’re existing clients, and you want to make sure their experience is as good as possible because their experience with you starts from the moment they search your brand name on Google. So, that result is part of your brand message and your reputation in their eyes. So, start with something simple which is what you control which is your website.

Make Sure To Put Your Pages In Folders And Arrange Your Site Properly And Systematically

Setting up Your Navigation Bar is Also Essential as it Allows You to Indicate The Content That is Important and Valuable To Your Users

[00:09:02] Sean Si: I’m going to go and dive a little bit deeper into this without getting too technical for our listeners out there. When you say you have to organise it for Google, what do you mean? Is it just a matter of having a better site map, having a better location for your pages making sure they’re on the navbar, the main nav bar up there on the header section or is it something else?

[00:09:29] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Yeah. Well, the navbar is important. If there’s a clear way for the user to get to this page, you’re indicating to Google that page is important to your users, so that would be the first step. Second step would be making sure that you’ve got like your Contact Page. Typically you’ll just have the form with no text. That doesn’t help Google to actually display that in a helpful, valuable manner to your audience. So, you’d want to write a little text, which says, you know, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact us. This is the page to do it, whatever it might be. I would also advise you to be careful about using negative terms. I almost said if you have any problems, never, ever, ever, start with that kind of, oh, if you’ve got problems because it gives people the idea that they should have problems if they don’t.

Be More Positive, Be Careful About Using Negative Terms to Avoid Sending Out a Negative Message to Google and Your Users

[00:10:12] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And it also shows on your Brand SERP, which immediately, if you see the word problems or issues or anything else negative, you’re sending out a negative message which actually isn’t necessary, you can turn that around and be more positive. So, you need a little bit of contact on these pages that are typically forgotten for SEO purposes, for search engine optimisation, login pages typically forgotten. You need an aisle with the text that explains what people need to do on the page. It’s as simple as that, what solution does this page bring to the user? And if you just explain that, Google will show it and you make sure that your brand message is included and Bob’s your uncle if you’re away. It’s brilliant. 

Having Content Silos Help Google Gain a Better Understanding of Your Website Structure and The Content and Message You Would Want it to Show Your Audience

[00:10:47] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And the third thing is not to have a flat site structure. What do I mean by that? It’s having all the pages at the root level. You need to put your pages in folders and organise your site into silos. So for example, one typically that I see is that I advise all my clients and all the people I work with to have an About silo so you have about the company, about the products, about the people in the team, contact that has joined the team so on and so forth. And that’s the About silo and that’s the one that’s important, most important for the Rich Sitelinks. And if you’ve got it in a silo, Google will immediately understand that all of that is serving your existing audience or your prospects, and it will be useful for it to show them.

[00:11:27] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And that’s a really, really simple trick to gain those Rich Sitelinks. Then obviously you’ve got your blog silo, and if it thinks your blog and articles are important, it will start showing blog and articles in those Rich Sitelinks according to that freshness or its perceived importance. 

[00:11:41] Sean Si: Oh, Hey. And since you’re here, can you do me a favour? Can you hit on the subscribe button and hit the bell button and select all notifications so that whenever we have a new video, you’re going to be the first one to know. Until then, keep leading. You have to have discipline. And the discipline is to deny yourself. Deny yourself. When you want to swipe that credit card for something that you don’t really need, pause and let a day or two pass by. If you still feel that way, pause again, let a day or two pass by again. No, I mean that.

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