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Good guys, bad guys and content marketing

10/04/2013 | Simon Mobey

As a child I had a brief fixation on cowboy movies fuelled greatly by a film called Once Upon A Time in the West, an iconic spaghetti Western starring Henry Fonda and Charles Bronson. 

Although it was rated PG, containing as it did ‘western violence and brief sensuality’, I was allowed to watch the film at my grandmother’s house where grandparental guidance permitted pretty much any VHS to be watched as long as you behaved.     

By the time I was a teenager any juvenile aspirations of living in the Wild West had been banished by the grim reality of growing up in the Wild West Midlands, however Once Upon A Time in the West left me with three resonating beliefs:

  1. Don’t mess with Charles Bronson.
  2. Played correctly, the harmonica is an excellent vehicle for portraying contempt.  
  3. Bad guys wear black hats, good guys wear white hats. 

Disappointingly, none of these assumptions had mustered any significance in my adult life until recent years, upon my discovery of Black Hat and White Hat methods in Search Engine Optimisation.  

Black Hat SEO is regarded as the work of the baddies. These are aggressive SEO strategies, techniques and tactics that focus on tricking search engines and not on satisfying a human audience. Some common examples of Black Hat SEO include Keyword Cramming, Invisible Words and Doorway Paging

Employing this approach will usually result in short-term gains in terms of rankings and page hits but is frowned upon by search engines and ultimately runs the risk of being penalised by Google, who consistently tweak their infamous algorithms to ensure users are met with a quality product at the end of their search, leading us nicely to White Hat SEO.

Although I doubt John Wayne ever wrote for web, if he had, he would have used White Hat SEO.

White Hat SEO centres on providing web content that is useful, interesting and engaging to the reader on websites that provide great user experience.  

This content must be relevant to the website on which it appears and although keywords and tagging are still important in drawing traffic from search engines, ethical SEO copywriting carries focus on the quality of the copy and how useful it is to the reader.

It requires no lack of hard work, research and writing skill, but implementing White Hat SEO results in a long-term pay-off. Dividends are paid in the way that top quality optimised content is recognised by search engines, shared on burgeoning social media channels and linked on blogs and websites. 

Publishing quality web copy gives invaluable visibility and authority to your site which converts to an improved Google ranking and increased web traffic as a result. 

White Hat SEO is what we do at Webreality. (We’re good guys). We’ve a proven track-record of building excellent websites and giving first-class customer support, so now through our Content Marketing services we draw visitors to those sites by helping our clients to become reputable online publishers. 

Check us out, pardner.