MSP Marketing: 20 Must-Have MSP “Magic” Keywords
Are you using the most effective keywords for your MSP marketing goals? Moveover, are you using keywords in the most effective way to rank on page one? Here are the best keywords and how to use them.
The Top 20 MSP Marketing Keywords
When starting an online MSP marketing campaign, the first question most managed service providers ask is "What keywords should I use?" The most straightforward answer should be whichever services you want to focus on.
For example, if you're going to focus on VoIP, your keyword(s) should be VoIP and its variants. You’ll also want to consider your demographic and local trends, as that will alter what people search for. If nobody in your area has ever heard the term “VoIP” and they all just call it a “phone system,” then you should be sure to include the latter term as well. You won’t be selling much “soda” in a region that only calls it “pop”.
There are some fundamental search terms (keywords) that you can use as the basis for your online MSP marketing strategy. Here are 20 "magic" keywords that cover the majority of the services most MSPs offer. If you were to only incorporate these 20 keywords into your SEO or content marketing plan, you would find that they will serve your MSP marketing needs well.
- IT Support
- IT Services
- Computer Services
- Managed IT
- Computer Repair
- Computer Consultant
- Data Backup
- Cloud Services
- Cloud Hosting
- Remote Support
- Network Security
- Security Cameras
- Tech Support
- Computer Support
- Office 365
- Microsoft 365
- Help Desk
- IT Security
The next question to ask is how to use them? If you have prior knowledge of keywords, chances are you’re considering adding them to the meta-data of your website. Additional obsolete practices include forcing keywords in the menu or footer of your site, or anywhere else where it doesn’t make sense.
Forget Everything You Think You Know About Keywords
In previous generations of SEO, a focus on keywords was a viable strategy because all the search engines were driven by them, as opposed to the context in which they were contained. As you can imagine, this led to many businesses taking advantage of this, and for a while, it was considered black hat SEO. Oh, your competitor is showing up? In 1999, you would stick their name in your keywords metatag, as well as misspellings of your core services, and repeated terms—you know, just to put some extra emphasis on them.
Back then, businesses would purchase domain names with keywords in the domain, to really try to one-up their competition, too. Every menu item on a site’s dropdown would contain the same terms over and over again. It was a lawless time for the web, and sometimes these odd strategies worked, although mostly they just made your website a little bit more annoying to navigate for visitors.
In response to these bad practices, Google eliminated using keywords in metadata as a means to determine whether or not a website contained the information a searcher was looking for. Instead, Google turned its focus on the content itself for determining page rank and user intent.
If you have been developing an MSP marketing plan for your business, you most likely are familiar with the importance of using keywords. Unfortunately, like many businesses, you may still be using keywords the way they were used in the internet's early days. If so, then it's time to rethink how you use keywords.
So wait, Does Google Use Keywords? Yes, but not as individual SEO signals and not in the meta tag, and that’s been the case for over a decade.
When developing a content marketing strategy for your MSP, it is essential to understand how Google and the other search engines determine your website's rank (the page position). Simply put, they read the content, trying to understand the context. This information is used to determine whether or not your blog, service page, or website, in general, provides the best answer to a searcher’s query.
Regarding today’s SEO marketing, content is the driving force to page position.
Here’s the Thing, Those Big, General, Highly-Targeted, Golden Keywords? They are Hardly Ever Searched.
Let’s take a look at one of these “magic” keywords: IT Support. According to Google, this term only gets about 15,000 searches per month throughout the entire United States. If we just look at New York state, it’s down to just under 900 monthly searches. If we narrow that down to the three counties our MSP tends to do business in, IT support is only searched maybe 10-15 times per month on average.
Do we want to show up on Google for this term? Sure. Why not?
Does ranking for this term mean a ton of traffic to our website? Clearly not.
Here’s the kicker—there are pretty decent odds at least some of those searches are by us and our competition, just checking to see how well we all rank!
It suddenly puts things into perspective, right?
So these incredibly general, highly competitive keywords aren’t really all that important. Sure, you can get a little traffic from them, and some of that traffic might even be pretty confident in what they are hoping to find and would want your specific services, but it shouldn’t be what you focus on.
It’s kind of like ignoring all potential customers waiting outside of your door in the hopes that some extremely wealthy guy in a top hat with a big bag of money is going to strut in and pour $100,000 on your desk. If you focus on these core keywords alone, you are going to miss out on most of the business opportunities you could get.
For MSP Marketing, Content Is King
Instead of treating keywords as, well, a list of words on your website, a modern keyword strategy is designed to operate within your content and not as isolated words. Using keywords to drive traffic, especially qualified leads, requires you to present yourself as an expert in your industry. This means your keywords need to be part of the narrative, used within the context of your content, providing potential leads with answers to their questions.
You can’t just rely on product descriptions and vendor content alone—you need to really show the value of your services and your expertise through your content. Your keywords will “organically” manifest as you write your content. Writing about a topic will generate the descriptions (keywords) potential leads are searching for.
Organically-created keywords are also important because Google focuses on user experience and rewards the content which caters to a user’s intent. Google penalizes ‘spammy'' content, which is usually the result of businesses trying to “write” for search engines. For example, if your content is written just to try to influence Google to favor a couple of keywords, and you are overly repeating those words to the point where the content reads poorly, your users are going to have a poor experience. If the keywords seem out-of-place within the context of your content due to repetition, then chances are you’re spamming it, and your readers (and Google) will be less likely to be engaged.
It’s Not The Keywords, It’s The Message
MSPs, like most businesses using their website to drive traffic and generate leads, believe their success or failure lies within finding THE magic keyword when it comes to marketing their MSP. Moreover, they don’t understand why a competitor ranks for a specific keyword, and they’re not. The answer to both those questions lies in the message, or lack thereof. A competitor is ranking for keywords and you’re not, because Google believes your competitors provide a better solution to a problem than you are.
While there are many other factors, such as the age of their site, and the quality of their backlinks, how much interaction they get on social media, in the press, and elsewhere, it’s equally as likely that their content satisfies Google’s requirements for providing valuable information.
What’s Your MSP Marketing Message?
What differentiates your MSP from your competitors? What’s the thing that you do better than any other MSP? Most notably, are you sharing your message or still waiting for customers to stumble upon your website and call you? Unfortunately, in today’s business environment waiting for leads to find your website in an increasingly congested online space is a recipe for disaster.
Writing content, cultivating a social media presence, and developing an MSP marketing plan can be difficult; we understand it. In fact, as an MSPs ourselves, we are one of the few MSPs that offer marketing resources for managed service providers. This makes us uniquely able to provide you with the support needed to generate the leads you need to grow your business.
If you feel you’re not receiving the quality of leads you need to grow or are having difficulties sharing your message, JoomConnect can help. Our full-service MSP marketing solutions will provide your company with a complement of services designed to help your business break through the noise of your competitors and get your message out.