Portfolio Sample 1

SEO Content Blog Post


There is a method of blogging that is called SEO Content Writing. Its goal is to write purely for achieving search engine rankings (mainly on Google). It, therefore, needs a different kind of planning, creation, and optimizing of content.

Writing for SEO also has its own tricks, tactics, and techniques. It takes a lot of training to become an SEO Content Writer, and to stay at the top of the trade, despite Google’s frequently changing algorithms.

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“SEO Blog Posts” can be pivotal drivers of organic website traffic, provided they are optimized for search engines. A well-optimized blog post must be strategically crafted around a specific, highly searched keyword (or topic).

It must then be written with the strategic aim of getting to the top spots on the search results pages of search engines for that keyword or topic and its related sub-topics.

How to structure the blog post and what sub-topics to cover will depend on comprehensive SERP (Search Engine Results Page) analysis.

By meticulously studying what topics and sub-topics competitors have covered, and then matching – and surpassing – the best content on SERPs, one can create blog posts that truly magnetize targeted free traffic.

The SEO Blog Post sample below demonstrates how it has been optimized for the primary keyword “small business marketing.” It has covered a lot of secondary keywords (related sub-topics) that competitive blog posts have – and also included many that competition has not thought to include.

For example: small business marketing basics, small business marketing tips, small business marketing budgets, small business marketing automation, small business marketing services, small business local marketing … you get the gist.

Also, the post has a graphic between every 300 words or so – another tactic to outrank competitive blog posts.

One thing to remember … while it’s important to do whatever it takes to get rankings on search engines, it’s also important to write for the target audience the blog post aims to help. Since this blog post is intended for a beginner audience of small businesses, its language and style have been appropriately tailored.

Read on …

Small Business Marketing Guide (Yes, With A Clear Roadmap!)

Small Business Guide

You type “small business marketing” into Google, and what do you get? Loads of ideas, I bet. Articles may be competing with each other to offer 51 ideas, 101 ideas, 501 ideas.

They are all excellent ideas, no doubt. But the problem is they may all be ideas randomly gathered from across the whole landscape of marketing. Am I right?

Where do you begin when those 101 marketing ideas for small business include bits of email marketing, content marketing, strategy and planning, webinar marketing, videos, and podcasts, marketing practices – all served up as a pig’s breakfast?

Sometimes it’s an opposite problem. You’re given many ideas from just one or two facets of marketing, leaving several territories uncovered. You’re left with lopsided advice.

We understand. You want a clear progress roadmap with all the right ideas categorized and prioritized. You want actionable advice in steps because you’re a small business owner with no time or money for haphazard marketing. Right again?


What is marketing? Small businesses must get this answer first ...

Concept definitions must be both explanatory and also simple, don’t you agree?

That’s why you may like this marketing definition from C.J Hayden (the author of Get Clients Now!). Here’s what she says:

C J Hayden Quote

(Image courtesy: C J Hayden)


In short, no small business can ever do too much marketing.

Which of these small business marketing tips have you not considered yet?

Here are some classic small business marketing tips where small businesses usually don’t pay as much attention as they must :

Small Business Marketing Tips
  • Acquire the know-how of marketing: Marketing is a science and an art. Learning the ropes makes you more pro-active and strategic – and less reactive and accidental – in approach.
  • “Need-to-do” marketing vs. “nice-to-do” marketing: Some types of small business marketing ideas are absolute must-dos. Every business needs that minimum marketing. Some other sales and marketing ideas are good for extending your efforts out. Don’t underdo the basics and overdo the extra ideas.
  • Marketing spends must return earnings: Every marketing payout is an investment to be evaluated on how much more it can earn you back. This ROI (Return on Investment) calculation is what separates a small business from a hobby.

How $9 per month is one man’s idea of small business marketing budgets …

Can small businesses get free marketing? Not quite. But you can get close.

When the book “The $100 StartUp” came out, there was such a to-do about its low numbers for small business marketing budgets.

Well … there is one marketer whose business has been publishing on Medium for the last five years, and here’s what he does and spends to earn a princely sum of $5000 every month.

Small Business Marketing Budget

Why small business marketing automation must be like a McDonald’s drive-thru takeaway …

Small businesses marketing automation could use simple email. Here is a graphic that shows you the typical customer journey (when buying anything).

Set up separate automated sequences of emails to nudge customers at every stage of their journeys – to urge people to take the following steps while they’re still hot and responsive to your influence.

Prevent them from straying away midway.

Small Business Marketing Automation

Which of these small business marketing services makes your wallet wince?

Apart from domain, web hosting, and website design services, most small businesses also need email list management services, tech services, SEO services, and other software and apps.

Should you want other small business marketing services, there is also a spectrum of options. Starting with free self-help, you can go all the way up to consultants offering done-for-you services. Small business marketing courses are a happy middle ground that balance expert guidance with self-paced learning.

When looking for small business marketing companies that specialize in businesses of your size. Ask to see their business and content marketing examples.

Small Business Marketing Services

How to be your neighborhood nice guy through small business local marketing …

Small business local marketing is a form of “micro-marketing”. You deliberately pick a manageable geographical area around you – your suburb, maybe – and intensively market your business both physically and digitally.

The most intelligent way to become a visible player locally is by melding with the local community in many ways (as shown below). Look for ways in which your local audiences search for “small business marketing near me” so you can respond really quickly.

Remember, mobile marketing can be a heavy-hitter for you when you go local because it enables geo-specific targeting.

Small Business Local Marketing

How small fish can bite other fish with a sharp small business marketing strategy …

In aquariums, it’s common to see small fish biting off other small fish and the fins of the bigger ones, to make more room for their own growth. To achieve such menacing competitiveness, your small business marketing strategy must be sharp and defined.

It’s simple – you have to make six key decisions to get at your ideal small business marketing profile.

Small Business Marketing Strategy
  • Decide your marketing niche: Your “niche” is the corner of the market (or a topic) where you can differentiate yourself from competitors and dominate.
  • Locate your target audience: Narrow down your potential customer base. Focus on a small but lucrative segment.
  • Identify your competitors: Analyse the strengths of other marketers who have the same or similar audiences as your own.
  • Articulate your business mission: Tell people (and yourself and your team) what greater purpose drives your business.
  • Find your perfect positioning: How do customers think you are way different from any competition? How do they think you can add value or transform their lives?
  • Finalize your branding: Build a brand logo, tagline, and identity that distills all this thinking above. It’s not an amateur’s job. It needs a branding professional.

Here’s why strategy is never complete without a small business marketing plan …

A small business marketing plan usually includes business strategy plus a few other specifics like numbers, schedules, deadlines, route maps, and actions to take:

Small Business Marketing Plan
  • Your immediate and long-term business goals: All goals need to be stated in numbers and time frames. How many people will you aim to reach, and how much will your earn – and by when?
  • Your steps to growth: Plot out a growth path that starts at zero and reaches your goal milestones along a trajectory. It helps find your way back when you stray.
  • Your metrics of performance: Learn about the important metrics of performance, and choose ones that will be pertinent for you to track, given your goals.
  • Your periodic business audits: Monitoring the parameters of success and the overall health of your business and its financials once a quarter is good marketing practice.


Without these “Need-To-Do” Marketing Activities, you’d be building your marketing edifice on sand …

Which marketing is the best for small business? As the following diagram shows you, there are four big marketing pillars that every small business must use, willy nilly. Let’s look at the details.

Need-To-Do Marketing Activities


Your website is the centerpiece of your marketing. It’s where you put in all the infrequently changing information about your business. Add your credentials, values, differentiation, products, selling and marketing practices, and policies … the works.


If your website is like a brochure of your business, your blog is like a magazine. It’s fresh from issue to issue – with something new to read at every visit. Blogs regularly to beckon traffic to your site with vigor.


It’s said that unless a person is touched at least between 7-12 times by your work, he doesn’t develop closeness, trust, and loyalty. To frequently whisper “wakey wakey” into sleeping ears is your email marketing’s goal.


Whenever your blog has something new, aim social posts at the “influencers” on social media. Influencers on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, or LinkedIn will like and share it with their vast fan base. In other words, conquer the fort to capture the surrounding territory.

(More social ideas follow in the extra activities below.)

With these extra “Nice-To-Do” Marketing Activities, you can give your marketing some rocket boosts …

Once you put in place and optimally action the Big Four Marketing Activities, decide extra goals you want to achieve, for your small business marketing for 2021 and beyond. The graphic below radiates in all the directions you can go.

Nice-To-Do Marketing Activities

Being seen in more places and more content formats extends your business and brand reach, and widens your sphere. Here are some top ideas to achieve this:

Reach More Places
  • Video Marketing: You can repurpose your blog posts into interesting videos for YouTube or Tiktok – or even create a video-based campaign afresh.
  • Podcast Marketing: Podcasts are hot these days – and especially interesting when you can interview experts or tell stories of case studies as a sequence.
  • Infographics & Slide Decks: Recast the content and stats from others or your articles into teasing infographics or slide decks. (Credit all your information sources.)

Raise your business roar by being heard from places online where you can vocalize your brand authority. Here are some best ideas to achieve this:

Accentuate Decibel Levels
  • Forums & Conversations: Join forums or communities to showcase your credibility and authority. Scour social media hashtags for conversations in your niche.
  • Speaking Opportunities: Volunteer to be on conference speaker panels, be a guest on podcasts or teach a lesson module on other people’s courses.
  • Public Relations: Create opportunities to be in the news – and schedule and circulate press releases periodically to remain in the limelight.

The shortest cut to your business growth is to hitch rides on the backs of other successful marketers. Here are some terrific ideas to achieve this:

Piggyback On Others
  • Partnerships & JVs: Get together with complementary marketers to sell combo packages created by bundling both your products. Enhance your mutual earnings.
  • Affiliate Programs: Join Clickbank or any other reputed Affiliates Platforms to enlist lots of tiered affiliates. You only have to pay commissions when they sell for you.
  • Guest Blogging: When big-name magazines and blogs in your niche say “Write For Us,” jump at the chance to do guest-blogging and cream their traffic and audiences.

Helpfully engaging with your audiences, or embracing them into your fold, is a great way to build trust and sales. Here are some smart ideas to achieve this:

Engage Audiences Interactively
  • Chatbot Marketing: Install chatbots and chat playbooks that ask site visitors to tell you what they’re looking for, so you can help them with precisely what they want.
  • User-Generated Content: Inviting your audiences to share user-generated content on your site is a killer idea. They’ll feel like co-owners of your brand and promote it.
  • Tools & Apps: Offering the use of a free tool or app via your site is another brilliant idea. Mobile-friendly tools and apps are deeply appreciated as “practical value”.

Want your brand to become a “highly visible expert” and be reckoned as a “thought-leader”? Here are some clever ideas to achieve this:

Brighten Brand Burnish
  • Write a Book: Nothing stamps you as an authority and domain expert as writing a book. Ebooks are fine, but a hardcover printed book, with a smashing cover, is tops.
  • Teach What You Know: Brands that teach, via courses or mentorship, instantly beget respect. The more you charge, the more respect you get (not the other way round!).
  • Merchandising: When your gifts and giveaways have “souvenir value,” they market your business 24×7. Perennially valuable brand merchandise can be a marketing hit.

Fostering a closely-knit community around your business is the most thoughtful way to keep your customers from looking for greener pastures. Here are some brilliant ideas to achieve this:

Retain Customer Loyalty
  • Relationship Building: Use a Customer Relationship Management tool and social media to follow up and intensively handhold customers on the verge of purchase.
  • Rewards Program: Create redeemable bonus points that buyers can earn with every purchase. It’s now fashionable to offer your own branded cryptocurrency points.
  • Community Bonding: Build a Discussion Forum or Facebook Group, or better still, a Membership Site. People will come for the content but stay on for the company.

Advertising, in short-burst campaigns, can be a great tactic to heighten brand awareness when your business needs more eyeballs. Here are some excellent ideas to achieve this:

Do More With Customer Loyalty
  • Social Media Advertising: Facebook and Instagram advertising are not as expensive as you think. Set a budget you can handle – and see if you can strike some luck.
  • Influencer Campaigns: Some agencies can get you cost-efficient social micro-influencers with raving fans, to do credible word-of-mouth marketing for you.
  • Using Social Innovations: The social channels are forever innovating. Look for new ways to excite audiences. Use Twitter Spaces, Instagram Stories, or YouTube Shorts.

Having a calendar schedule with periodic events heightens your brand’s “experiential value” in galvanizing spurts. Here are some neat ideas to achieve this:

Hosting High-Buzz Events
  • Host online group events: Host online group sessions – webinars, masterminds, workshops, Q&A days – to offer audiences high-caliber content.
  • Host offline group events: Online events do sizzle, but there’s nothing to beat huge offline conferences or summits for friendly backslapping or business card swapping.
  • Cause Marketing: Associate your business with a worthy cause that is connected to your niche. You’ll get opportunities to turn audiences into affirmative-action groups.


So, there we go … you’ve now got yourself a clear and practical small business marketing roadmap to know where to go from where you are.
Here’s what you can do next:

1. Bone up on the basic concepts of small business marketing (even if you feel you know it all) .. add to these the profound customer-centricity advice of the incomparable marketer Harry Gordon Selfridge …

Harry Gordon Selfridge Quote

(Image courtesy: Selfridges)

2. Get the Big Four “Need-To-Do” marketing activities in place. Use them optimally, regularly, and with total commitment. Keep monitoring their performance.

3. Experiment with any of the “Nice-To-Do” marketing activities (one at a time, on a small but sacrosanct budget, and watching performance metrics before expanding).

Remember, marketing can be fun if it’s played as a low-risk game. Work with what works for you. And while you’re at it, enjoy watching your big and small competitors run from your bite!


Actions to take today ... turn brand challenges into wins

Delve deeper into the tangible results of my unique approach by exploring my service spectrum, my case studies, and other items in my portfolio. Each piece is a testament to the harmony of experience, an unconventional mindset, and cross-sector adeptness.

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Take your brand's content marketing from run-of-the-mill to remarkable

Shobha Ponnappa

"As a Content/Brand Specialist, and SEO/UX Writer, I can help transform your brand's online presence. I can lift it with innovative ideas to take it to an enviable position. Let's collaborate to create a captivating brand story, engage your audience, boost your online visibility, and increase your ROI. Take the next step towards your brand content success and contact me today."

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