Rickety Roo COHORT WEEK 5 – Competitor Analysis Review


Episode Summary.


In this episode, Erika Varangouli does an in-depth review of the student’s competitive analysis assignment.


Erika shares insights on;

  • The importance of considering multiple channels for content marketing in a competitive environment.
  • Differentiating Brand and Non-Brand Terms in Gap Research
  • Tips on presenting recommendations to clients and more!


FCDC Cohort Sponsor.


A massive thank you to Rickety Roo for sponsoring our content Marketing cohort.

Rickety Roo is a digital marketing agency helping small to medium-sized businesses get better visibility online.

They understand what it takes to drive eyeballs, clicks, and ultimately customers for your business leveraging Google.



They provide the following services:

  • Local SEO
  • PPC Advertising
  • Web Design


Launch your customer growth with Rickety Roo



Teacher’s Profile.




✍🏾Name:Erika Varangouli

✍🏾What Erika Does: Head of SEO Branding at Semrush

✍🏾 Company: Semrush

✍🏾Noteworthy:  Erika is also a public speaker, regular webinar host, and awards judge. 




Connect with Erika;





Key Insights.


💡The importance of considering multiple channels for content marketing in a competitive environment.


Erika Varangouli emphasizes the importance of adopting a holistic approach to content marketing, extending beyond organic search. She praises Mae for considering various channels, including paid campaigns and social media, in her proposal. Erika highlights that in a competitive environment, content marketers should not limit themselves to search and blog posts. The suggestion is to explore alternative avenues to build brand presence and trust signals.


💡Caution Regarding Branded Keywords in Competitor Research


Erika advises caution when suggesting targeting branded keywords of competitors. She stresses that treating brand and non-brand terms separately is crucial. The discussion revolves around the sensitivity of using competitors’ branded terms and the potential challenges and considerations involved. Erika advises that such decisions are not only strategic but also brand decisions, emphasizing the need for careful evaluation.


💡 Tips on presenting recommendations to clients.


Erika discusses the importance of presenting data insights clearly and concisely to clients and team members. Erika suggests focusing on the recommendations and highlights, rather than overwhelming clients with too much detail.


💡Inclusion of Paid Campaigns in Content Strategy Proposal


Mae’s proposal includes a bold suggestion of incorporating short-term paid campaigns alongside organic SEO efforts. Erika acknowledges the significance of this approach, especially when dealing with clients who may initially perceive paid campaigns as a sign of weakness. She suggests introducing this idea in the discovery phase, understanding the client’s stance on paid campaigns, and evaluating their openness to the strategy.




Episode Transcriptions.

Erika Varangouli 0:02

correct you’re suggesting that every class should start with like 30 minutes presentations and then 30 minutes Next Top from me. So you have an okay, I have some thoughts on that. But I want to hear other people’s opinions as well. So we can discuss openly What do you guys think? Okay, I don’t want us to spend a lot of time discussing this Don’t get me wrong because I’m super excited for the presentations. But I think Festus there’s, there’s a bit of misunderstanding.


So what you took is like the, the whole process the whole kind of like map of content marketing, as I see it, which has been one of the presentations, right. And in this course, I aim to touch on those things. Not every one of those things will go in depth, some of them warrant going into more depth, some others not. Also, my aim is not to put an assignment every week for the next week, right? We’re we’re all grown ups like this is not you know, university where the teacher is going to penalise you if you don’t turn in an assignment or anything. So what I was thinking because in the first deadline, like I received probably fewer than 50%, let’s say if there’s nine of you, I didn’t get four or five on the deadline, right.


And I realise it was a big task. But it was also for us to to test our limits, test our timings for you, as well, to see how long it takes you and everything. So my aim is to have essentially maybe a smaller assignment here and there like this one, you had more time to complete it. But for me, it’s a very specific thing. It’s not a bigger assignment, right, but have probably two bigger assignments or three. And essentially, that’s when we do the presentations like this one, this competitor analysis, we, we kind of spread it across three lessons. They’re not all titled competitor analysis, but they are about understanding the market where you sit in it, understanding competitors.


And this is a huge part of building a content marketing strategy. Content Creation is not because also there are like the copywriting and the content writing cohorts. But also because it’s they weren’t separate cohorts. So we’re not going to go into detail, we’re going to cover them as the outcome of the strategy, right and just top level. So my idea is to have a session like this. Hopefully, if we make good progress, this session, you know, is an hour long just presentations for more people, if we can fit it in like a cadence of more people speaking and presenting in a shortened timeframe. And in between any shorter assignments you turn to me.


And we schedule like one to ones to to talk about your progress. As we go like this has been the first month there was only like one assignment so far. So there’s not really much to pick up with each one of you. So I think by doing this every week, also festers, we are limiting a lot time that we have to actually go into other topics. So I want us to keep that balance of covering this topics, as you say, giving the floor to you. Because I did say that you’re the ones leading this course. Right? So I want to be feeding off what you ask him to in every lesson, what your suggestions are, what you present, what the team feeds back. And this is also a learning session, right?


You presenting for me? I hope at least half of you will say you learned more from this session than the previous ones. Right? So this will be for me a sign of success. So I’m open to discuss it. If you see any of you like so fastest. I really mean it. I appreciate that you did it. This is exactly what I want. I want to I want you to be telling me that Erica, we don’t think we’re moving fast. We don’t think we’re covering everything we don’t think we cover in depth or we want less depth. So all of this feedback, I think is great.


For now my thinking is like three big sessions with presentations. Smaller assignments in between, it doesn’t mean every week on every topic, right? And eventually remember the goal is that you hold in your virtual hands, a content marketing strategy, right. So that will be the final outcome of this. Okay. Okay. All right. Which also reminds me I did receive a few more this week from the first assignment. Please, if there’s anyone who hasn’t turned it yet please please please try to do your best to deliver this Friday with the other assignment. And I have started saving them all in the shared folder. So you will see in the shared folder there are files for every session with a recording of The deck, and there’s a folder that says assignments.


Within that I created a folder that says competitor analysis, I haven’t added the latest ones because I haven’t found time to read them yet. As soon as I read them, I will add them. But please make sure if you don’t see yours there and you have turned it in or at some point, you want to share it. And I haven’t added it for some reason know that you can find everyone’s assignment there. The reason for me is transparency is everyone has the right to learn from each other, like the time we have is limited.


But it doesn’t mean you cannot go through them and sort of see what other people turned in. I haven’t added names. So because you share with me in an email, which is how I want you to keep doing it. They don’t think most of them have a name on them. Because that is not the important thing is not to say okay, Barry’s did a good job Sandra did a massive analysis Chitra did a small analysis it is to see how different people approach different types of clients entirely. So feel free to to go through them as well if you want after today. So


Chitra Iyer 6:10

Sounds great, but I am submitting it on a PPD that you want me to put it on mae’s so others can access it. I don’t know, because I find it on one file and keep adding more and more parts to it as we go along.


Erika Varangouli 6:24

You’re right, no. So here’s what we’ll do because I split them by the big kind of assignment. Alright, so this is competitor analysis. Yes, the one that you would have now would still fall within competitor analysis so you can update the one that I have saved there to try. Yes.


Chitra Iyer 6:42

Okay, okay. All right. Yes.


Erika Varangouli 6:46

All right. Look, I’m excited. We’re not even doing the stand up today. I mean, to put fastest again in the spotlight and festers you have how are we gonna do it? We already like spent 30 minutes and I have a hard stop. Let’s start Festus. I’m gonna time you 10 is the maximum amount of minutes you get to present your client, your analysis and your recommendations. Also, is it possible to share your screen or do you want me to share my screen?


Festus Eze 7:19

I’m maybe sharing my device.


Erika Varangouli 7:25

Okay, one second. So I bring it up on TrainerRoad right. So all right, let me let me share Okay. Okay. Sorry, did I just swear? Sorry. Okay, let me see if I can share. Chrome has given me weirdness. Can you see this? Everyone? Can you see my screen? Yes, yes, how we can. Okay, so let’s start. First, just tell us a bit. I’m showing the website and then I’ll go into the documents you shared as well as you talk about them.


Festus Eze 8:20

Okay, I’ll start with the guidelines you gave for the presentation. You gave a guideline and number one said what’s your client does. My plan develops and sells cycling training applications and the name of the application is called TrainerRoad. To find the competitors I use semrush to select for details based on relevance and one such competitor based on most common keywords. Then number two guideline is what your competitor and market analysis may find this year I will start the market analysis.


My plants at each competitor has a domain and their websites their competitors business you have found that between 1999 to 2014 My plan business was founded in 2010 for direct competitors cycling, cycling training applications and the fix computer a cycling company Felicia says adverse please adapt this to an array when my clients I want to talk about all that Tarzan was done lose. Babu Placepot prey direct competitors have over standards in place. My Plate has better up dated in less time.


Apple and Apple Store that all the competitors the competitors have more reviews in Play Store that my clients, my clients has the second highest review in Apple Store. But less has the least authority score. This number of lengths this referring domain, and this estimated traffic than all the competitors. My client has the highest number of ranking pages that all the direct competitor, the search competitor has a higher number of random pages.


My plan is available in social media, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Tik Tok, other channels like Strava, Instagram Tres, Holmes podcast and all the other competitors as well are vulnerable in this Shanaze then the competitor analysis, the first the performance, but rather, the search competitor is far ahead of my clients and other competitors in terms of performance based on analysis of I did request analysis of pages in Google Search Engine Results Pages, positions one to 10 and pages with monthly traffic.


I started from organic search in SEM rush, I started acquisitions and then I can please so they get about 30 or 40 pages for each of the competitors to counter the people asking for the best pitch and those with more than 10 topics. So the analysis is. So when you look at an ice pack rider, the concept of digital is more than all the cycling apps competitors. My plan is that among the direct competitors, which means to other companies are better doing better in performance that might lead to analysis.


Then I did a keyword gap analysis, the Gulag of analysis, I selected the page for that I used also as a fish that’s a tab in the analysis that says he woke up missing that word that missing you find about Mr keywords among all the direct competitors, but missing with my clients isolated it’s for optimization. Then I selected another keyword tab for the keyword gap analysis and SEM rush.


This one says he woke up about to the trellis that he was with the computers perform better than my plants. The keyword analysis to I did the keyword targeting from our competitors. I started the base pages from each of these competitors, about 100 pages on this page from sandesh. Then I Now transfer the pages to Screaming Frog and I used to live last night the tattoos of all the hundreds basically I combined all these pages in a single minutes. Maximum.


Erika Varangouli 13:44

Hello, three minutes left just to three minutes left. Okay.


Festus Eze 13:50

Okay, proposals, the plots. I propose for optimization of Keywords in the keyword gap weaklist to improve my player’s performance relative to other competitors. I also propose development on the topic of additional keywords that are missing this any place like relevance, like legit websites, my client has far more pages that the director does not correlate with his performance in such I propose a content optimization on Iraqi pages is performance.


The computers are better at link acquisition that my clients I plan I propose to you this is where the radar computers have that’s better than losing place thought and my class.


So I propose appstore optimization to boost the standards of these pages as to propose more study into the keyword targeting that I submitted to us for the topics then the pots guide is that challenges in their markets. that you uncovered with your research. I did not cover initial edge. I think some of the challenges will be discovered in the audience insights that was incorrect as well Yeah. I finished up finish I think that finished.


Erika Varangouli 15:24

Okay. Festus I have to say sometimes your connection maybe not great. Yeah, so I don’t know about everyone else. Maybe it’s my connection like sometimes I struggle to hear you very well. Yeah, same here. Same okay. But I don’t know what the class things and if you have a follow up question.


So we have I will give us what will I give us? Five minutes for this maximum? Seven. So let’s go what are the thoughts team, what is the feedback? What is the what is the follow up questions you have for festers? What do you think?


Erika Varangouli 16:15

Someone will have something come on. Come on who’s corageous. What there are no thoughts?


Chitra Iyer 16:38

There are but good, maybe for Festus, if you could put their file back on. I don’t know the you know, Festus file because it was really hard to follow what you were saying as well. As


Erika Varangouli 16:52

okay. Oh,


Chitra Iyer 16:56

because of the connection.


Erika Varangouli 16:58

Right. Okay. So let me do that. Still. So one way to share let me share


Chitra Iyer 17:11

an Excel sheet with all the time or maybe the last slide with the recommendations. Yeah, this one? And can you just zoom in a little bit, please? Zoom says bigger.


Erika Varangouli 17:30



Erika Varangouli 17:33

Thank you, thank you.


Erika Varangouli 17:41

I’ll go first. All right, because no one does. And you take a bit of time to read here. And I can share this spreadsheet again, and you can find them all as well. So first of all festus This is a very thorough, and great analysis of the landscape and the competitors. So thank you very, very much. For doing that.


I thought you really looked into some great things. I’ll start with a question. It’s not the biggest one I have, but it’s like, one I find intriguing. Why, in your report, and here did you choose to take like pages with more than 10 monthly visits, let’s say and no bigger ones or smaller ones? How did you decide on that kind of benchmark?


Festus Eze 18:34

I didn’t get you


Erika Varangouli 18:38

so, you know, when you say that you compare how many pages they have the get a minimum of like 10 monthly visits?


Festus Eze 18:47

Yes, yes. Yes.


Erika Varangouli 18:48

Okay. How could you choose?


Festus Eze 18:51

Okay, when you the frequency? What do you I and I put it in a sequence so that the frequency those that are next, I choose those that are both 1010 and above do that haften request on our booth

Erika Varangouli 19:19

here’s here’s this sorry, go

Festus Eze 19:27

The column in SEMrush it’s the number of physics in a month. So I choose I now arranged in order of highest to lowest so from the 10th and above plus I choose it does Okay, so I’m rush with a number of this is in a month, okay.

Erika Varangouli 19:52

I guess okay. So so here’s, here’s a suggestion, right? Because Now you’re doing this with semrush. In the future you may have like, we’re out of time. Let’s let’s use this as a as a learning, right? This is essentially called benchmarking, right, benchmarking around traffic benchmarking around which keywords to propose first benchmarking is when you have to take numerical data, right, and then set up your basis, where do I start?


Or what is the average? So how you you set up this benchmarking, right, what benchmarking can help you like forecast what you will succeed in or what you will bring? Or where you should start? So, essentially that 10, I’m asking you fast is not because I think it’s bad or good thing is because it allows us to talk about benchmarking when your event and with sem rush, you know, you have third party data.


So we don’t know if this is accurate, right? Theoretically working with a client, you are given access, or you’re given reports with the actual traffic data, but then you still use something like SEMrush to get the idea for their competitors. What I suggest is not taking the filters that a tool has SEMrush see ranking anyone else?


You know, you can fill this as a filter is like, filter for keywords with over 1000 searches with or with lower than 100 or whatever? The same with pages, right? It’s a great thing that you ordered them by traffic, and then you singled them out. But why did you set the bar as low as 10? Or it could be high? If it’s 10. Right?

Festus Eze 21:42

I set it as low as 10. So that accommodates? Well, as many as possible. By the time you close the 10 limits. Some of the competitors don’t have don’t have data within that range. But if you go below 10, some of the competitors like back rider rather, doesn’t have to do that range.


Erika Varangouli 22:09

Okay. Okay. Okay. So this, this, again, I’m saying this may be great. But the way to do it would be this, you take your client, you take your competitors, right, and you calculate the median and the average, right? So in this case, 10 may be high. That’s why I said it may be high. In another case, where you’re comparing like websites with tonnes of traffic, right?


You find from that report, the top the bottom, you have your averages and your medians, and you say, Okay, anything with like lower than 1000 traffic, we’re not going to touch now, it’s not important because for my client, the benchmark is actually on average, they get 500. But all of our competitors average is 1000. So so this is where I’m putting my benchmark, I’m looking at everything over 1000.


And I’m doing it so the answer if I’m Claude, remember, I’m Claude, you’re presenting to me everyone in this class is Claude right now, Festus. So if you’re, if you’re presenting to me, be prepared that you know, your client will ask why 1010 is not a lot at all. So why are we even spending money? And time talking about pages that drive 10 visits? That’s not a lot. So this is where the answer is not because I use the filter on SEMrush. Or this is all I got? The answer is because I benchmark your traffic against your competitors.


Right. And this is, this is where we should be looking to go we should be looking to go and learn from pages that are performing well. performing well means above average, above average means above 10 or above 1000 depending on the industry and the level of competition. Okay. Okay. Someone have a question. Anyone someone raised their hand or not? QUESTION Yeah.


Chitra Iyer 24:10
Yeah, Sandra, you want to go first? Or should I?

sandra Tabansi 24:13

No it’s fine. Chitra. You can go ahead.

Chitra Iyer 24:17

I’m not gonna have any other. Go. Go. All right. Okay. So without wasting any time I wanted to ask. First is the point number, I think three, the Roman numeral three. I even heard it when you were talking and it confused me. You said as far as the as per the ranking, the ranking pages of TrainerRoad are doing much higher than the competitors.


So we should optimise those pages more. So I didn’t get that like 3.3. So you said that the ranking pages are far ahead of the four direct competitors, but this does not correlate with its performance. So are you saying that ranking The page’s ranking does not mean is driving traffic.

Festus Eze 25:04

What I mean is that this use organic search in SEMrush, then there’s a place to have pages, the pages that are ranking those, find out that Trainer Road has over 200,000 ranking pages. Then when you look bike rider like, rather has 17,000 pages, then the direct competitors, some of them have 5000 3000 and below pages.


So you see that TrainerRoad has more for far more ranking pages by ranking pages in google we mean those pages between positions, one to hundreds to Ruth has far more ranking pages, that the other competitors but when you compare the performance, trainerRoad is not better than that.


So is that they may be ranking far less than the few key positions 70 position on reposition looks closer to the test page. So when the do web content optimization, it can help your pages to rank better so that they move more closer to the first page. That’s what I mean


Chitra Iyer 26:23

Okay. I mean, I’m just really confused. I don’t want to waste time. But sorry, Erica, I just wanted to clarify that.


Erika Varangouli 26:30

Okay, let’s let’s do this class. Because we started like almost at the time, where the presentation should be finishing. So we’re falling behind in this class? Do Is everyone happy to do two presentations today?


In which case I will need on these they were made to decide between them who will not do their presentation? Or should we stop the discussion now? Because I think the value is in, in discussing in depth, but we’re behind so let’s have a consensus. What do you say two or three?

Erika Varangouli 27:06

I think we can do more justice.

Onize Muhammed 27:09

I think I should go then gonna have all the questions together at the end.

Erika Varangouli 27:17

I think these are this will be hard, maybe because we will not

Festus Eze 27:22

possibly possible list all the three goals. Standard system is more than that. All right.


Erika Varangouli 27:30

All right. Let’s let’s put this on hold Chitra I I understand your question or what you’re saying. I think ties into how this is presented again and what the actual recommend so we can get back to this. Alright. Let’s go to on neat. So who is let me see if I have it open here. Stay for long. So and these egg Do you want to go?


Onize Muhammed 28:00

Yes. Thank you. My clients is stay for long as default London calm and it’s an extended stay hotel booking site. It means that if you want to travel, you can go to stay for longer calm and search for a hotel, destination and book ahead of your travel. However, the least number of these I can book for is three days, their unique value proposition your unique selling point is in their pricing. they position themselves as a cheap extended, scenic hotel booking sites and they are able to encourage their customers to book long days because the longer you the longer you stay the longer days you booked the lesser you pay.


And they seem to offer one of the cheapest deals. Because I saw in the reviews that I saw most of the reviewers saying that when this found it for long, the offer sounded like too good to be true. The challenges observed in the English shoe. There is a huge issue of trust in the industry. Lots of consumers are complaining of being scammed, they use words like scam fraud to describe most of the brands, even across all social platforms and uses that one way or the other one.


Most of the brands been accused of fraud. And that’s really because, you know you’re promised one thing and when we get to the hotel, when we get to the hotel, they discover that it’s not the quality that they promised that they got or there was a refined during refunded their money after cancellation and lots of things like that. So you’d find people advising those who wants to book from this Are practice sites you find people and discouraging them not to book through them and rather book directly with the hotels for the competitor and market analysis. The what I notice is that the industry is very competitive.


There are lots of brands offering the same service I stay for long. Also, the search is very competitive as well. Brands like cheap advice or bookies are calm and Expedia. Where do we occurring means in the SERPs? My major competitors are hardly ranking in the first one to 10 results. Even for keywords with low difficulty score. The strong organic search competition most likely explains why most of them have higher traffic.


While most of them have higher traffic from direct search than organic also stay for long main competitors have higher domain authority, despite their stay for long, have higher content size and organic traffic than two of its other competitors. But then stay for long is doing better and to tail traffic down one of its main competitors, which is reserving the calm. Considering that it has content size of 1.2 million bots organic traffic or is as low as 9000.


Close stay safe for long paths I feel that stay for long is doing better than we serve is because it has 2000 212,000 pages with 8000 organic traffic, which is way better than 1.2 million as it gets 9000 organic traffic. My main proposal to stay for long that to Claude is that you should focus on building the site’s Domain Authority thing. And one way I can do that is to increase the organic traffic. And I suggest that we do that by building from the ground up, which is like targeting low competition keywords door with not very great traffic potential.


The Excel sheet I shared with Claude has keywords with search volume of between 502,000. And the good thing is that they have transactional intent, which means that we’ll see a boost in sales, which is a good thing to include all of these reports are submitted to cloud but I later discover the learning felt that I should talk about them.


Erika Varangouli 32:57

I need to I’m sorry, I’m glad two minutes. Also I don’t have a spreadsheet from you. I only had this document


Onize Muhammed 33:07

and look two spreadsheets I sent a link to is linked here.


Erika Varangouli 33:10

Yeah, he Yeah, sorry. I thought you sent something else. All right. Yeah, I left it here. Okay. Sorry. Let me open it. Oh, here. Also,


Onize Muhammed 33:21

I noticed that most of stay for long competitors are mostly targeting transactional keywords like hotel and destination keywords true service pages. But I believe that we can have an advantage if we go after commercial intent keywords like best hotels in USA cheap hotels in XYZ places. And that would have to do two blog posts. However, I believe that we probably start saying I suggest that before we start any content marketing efforts aren’t so say for long has to repair.


It’s bad English because it has a very bad reputation out there like did not see anybody any good, tangible good review about it even those who had something good to say mixed it up with other bad things. And I don’t think it’s I doubt if we continue with our resolving that all the customer service issues that has an issue affects any efforts we put into content markets and that we often if there’s any question, please bring it forward. Thank you for listening.


Erika Varangouli 34:35
Thank you so much Onize. Thank you. Okay. Let’s give five minutes. Okay. We can give five minutes to discuss our needs as presentation and then we’ll meet


sandra Tabansi 34:49

Okay, I just have one question for you. Thank you and the I think you did an amazing job just trying to figured out. I’m bringing to light like, especially the social media aspect and you know, what was seen about the for long as compared to the other competitors, but I really was looking out for the key words that you were going to, you know, recommend. Because you just took us to the sheets that I wanted to know which ones exactly, you talked about being intent. So which ones? I think just you’re, you know, you’re looking at, or you think from your analysis? That’s all I have


Erika Varangouli 35:52

Yes, thanks. Okay.


Onize Muhammed 35:58

There’s a lengthy spreadsheet. So that has the growth targets.


Erika Varangouli 36:08

Okay, so are these Am I understanding correctly that here we have like a little over 80 keywords that stay for long doesn’t rank at all its competitors run some work in the SERPs. And your suggestion is that they go for all of them.


Onize Muhammed 36:28

Yeah, we can start with this one. Yes.


Erika Varangouli 36:33

Okay. If anyone has any other questions, otherwise, I can ask my follow up question.


Chitra Iyer 36:41

I have a quick question. And it’s a bit a generic question Erica can apply to anything this in? When we present to clients, I don’t, I’m always confused how much of this when I was a client, like, I wouldn’t want to see any of this. I just wanted the recommendations and the quick, you know, highlights. And I also see that with my clients, sometimes their eyes glaze over if I go into so much detail, but if I just get quickly to the recommendation, so it will be really great to hear from you. When we actually present, what’s the sweet spot.


Erika Varangouli 37:13

So that that was going to be my follow up, because I noticed this across a few assignments, right? On one hand, I understand this as an assignment. And, you know, you’re using summarise, you’re using a tool to get insights, which is great. Now is a good time is a perfect time to discuss that. Some things are data, right? Some things from that date, like this is a data sheet. It’s not, it’s not something that is for a client, for a manager for a team, it’s like for you when you’re analysing and looking into data to make decisions and recommendations.


When you’re looking into data, whether it is for your strategy or for reporting, right, the way to present that is not to give someone an expert. Because by looking at it, they don’t know. And they have to look really hard to come up with questions or to understand what the recommendation is. So I really liked the fact that you could, you know, everything in a document as well, amazing. But the idea is that if I look at this, if I’m Claude, and I’m not like an expert, I’m confused, then I’m also thinking, right, I don’t rank for any of them at all.


And I see also my competitors are not really ranking even on the first page. So why are they so important? Why am I going to have a better chance of rank? So then you start looking into the methodology of like, okay, why these ones specifically? Okay, I don’t rank at all I’m stay for long, but my competitors are not doing great either. So probably they’re not even as great as you thought. The idea is that any piece of data you use for your analysis, your you translate into an actionable document for clients, right? You say, look, I looked through everything I analysed 3000 keywords in total, right.


SEMrush shows you how many you have in common, how many are weak? How many are this and you can say, look at 5000 keywords, you are missing 404,900 And for these ones, you’re ranking below that you need to make it digestible for your clients. Remember that what does weak mean? What does missing mean? Like they’re not users of content marketing or experts. And then you have to go into a few steps in order of priority. This is what data when data becomes insights and action, right? They don’t need to see all of that. And maybe if they have an SEO manager, they will ask for it. That’s perfect.


You keep it but what the client needs to see is I analyse that I analyse the opportunity. And what I’m suggesting is we start with these 10 pieces of I intend to target these ones because 123 reasons why we can discuss the logic separately. Like I’m not going to go into the logic of okay, why these ones are not other ones. I think a Nisa has one of the most difficult clients to be honest and open with everyone. That’s why I also wanted to discuss it today. Like it’s a travel industry. It’s a very, very, very competitive industry, and very hard to run so on either when we pick up our conversation and like progress for the strategy, we will discuss it in more detail.


But it was a great opportunity to say that, you know, when you’re speaking and presenting to a client, don’t show them an expert for SEMrush. At all, like only if they ask for it, like, Okay, where did you get this data from, you can share, but otherwise, prioritise and give them specific actions. And also, maybe if someone is not doing great, and like they’re just starting a content marketing programme. If we give them like 80 keywords to target, that’s a lot of work. So you need to start by saying, Okay, here’s the top 10. Here’s a priority, this is 10 pieces of content or five, the view is to tackle 1000 By the end of it, but here’s where we start, and then you make it digestible. Thank you. Perfect. Me, are you ready?


Mae Josémaria O. 41:32

Yeah, good afternoon.


Erika Varangouli 41:35

Oh, okay. Like,


Mae Josémaria O. 41:39

I would like to share my screen instead. Erica? Yes. Amazing.


Erika Varangouli 41:43

Thank you.


Chitra Iyer 41:44

Also, in the meanwhile, I have a quick question that, you know, how much does the whole content strategy have to riff off of what competitors are doing? I mean, is that necessarily, I think that’s one piece of it. But should overall recommendations beginning in that where competitors are and how we are pegged against them? Because this is our product content strategy. So


Erika Varangouli 42:09

for this stage, the idea was that you look at competitors. Okay, gonna be everything but we’re gonna do more but for now, just based off


Erika Varangouli 42:20

okay, thank you


Mae Josémaria O. 42:22

So uhm claude. I’m going to like start I’m just a bit nervous I’m sorry. Um, so my client is pulled you to come and I didn’t look in everybody’s seat is going to increase. Yeah, it’s awesome. So Podio is a flexible cloud based work management and collaboration platform for businesses. They do something similar to Asana click up on occasion. So what they do basically is help structure and automate workflows people across the board in an organization’s can use it including marketing sales, customer service, human resources.


And I’d see they have apart from this this main two services they also offer services like file sharing, which is not what a lot of their competitors do. So the major issues that I produce current strategy is reduce search visibility and declining traffic. Now for reduced search visibility. You can see their ranking for all branded keywords like put your login and put your CRM but they aren’t ranking for competitive terms at all. And even if this keywords like put your login and producer and you can tell that yeah, for social our people, but they don’t do much for your traffic, just give me a minute.


Let’s say this is their organic traffic, you can see put your login on whatever and you can see this as it but when I noticed that there have been declining traffic, you can tell there is something wrong with the strategy because a minute so Nevers, okay, yeah, so they’re missing viable opportunities to target and convert customers for similar solutions because they are mostly targeting branded keywords. Alright, so another reason for this is because the keywords that you’re targeting, are the ones that are improved on. It’s not related to your target audience. For instance, I noticed that there are over 600 keywords with improved rankings.



But this key was things that aren’t related like sponsorship website online sponsorship, and he does not target produce target audience. And this is also part of the reason why they haven’t declining traffic. Now, even in the cases where this improved keywords are ranking on the first page, it did not match the Dynomax search intents that one reason is because the URLs that you’re targeting are off tangent. For example, online sponsorship targets the homepage project.com.


I really want to know why this is. And like I said, there has been declining traffic for the past six months. And because of most of this traffic is coming from the homepage and the bad keywords targeting this home page. Everything is falling apart is like a domino effect. I don’t know if I need to show my tool or How i got thus, but let’s just go on. So my competition market competition market analysis, right as they have major players in this niche is Zapier atlassian, monday.com. And they’re leading the SERPs, right? Minute? They are leading the SERPs. No, no, no, no, no. Sorry. I’m just trying to get where this is coming from.


Mae Josémaria O. 46:25

As is really slow. Okay, but let’s go on. So they are leading the SERPs. And they have at least 30k pages on the search alone. And this has given them more wiggle room to, you know, put in and integrate more keywords and have ability to like develop topical authority. In contests this code, you basically put your is having like, tough 190 pages. And like I said in our previous call on our previous call, right? This lack of block structure is primarily the reason even the articles that pulled your house is not well optimised. There are some that are outdated and just can’t see and everything. So it’s everything is just, it’s not just working.


And another thing is that competitors are active on social, which gives them a strong social media presence. It’s this social media presence sends a good trust signal, and social signal, which also helps with their search visibility. By contrast, Cody does not have any, like I tried to search for them on places like LinkedIn, Twitter, and Quora, on LinkedIn, they don’t have a page, they don’t have a page, what they have is a group and the group is closed. I don’t know why this is on Twitter, they don’t even have anything going on. And on Quora, della lasts was called their last activity was over exactly the coda is like 11 years or so.


So and this because of they don’t have channels to distribute their content, the current proposal, and they are missing viable opportunities. So my proposals to you close is threefold. First, we need to start with your your place of least resistance, which is optimising existing website contents. I know you don’t have a blog post structure right now, we’ll get to that. So what we need to do is we need to revamp existing contents to target the common keywords obtained from our computer research. And now the reason for this is because compared to unique and missing keywords, which I can probably share with you or share the screen later, these common keywords are easier to rank because you already are, you already have a structure, you have a foundation that we can build.


Right? So it’s, it’s something that we can just work on, we already know that this is what we need to do. And we need to like work on it. Sometimes it’s the contents to one. Very, okay. Okay. So we can Okay, yeah, so on, although the keywords on that the missing column show potential keyword gaps, we can’t use that because they have a high keyword difficulty. And this is not your place of resistance, we are going to just be putting a lot of pressure there, and it’s not going to give us that fast rankings that we want.


So very quickly to improve rankings, we’ll have to filter for relevant keywords. The difficulty of 60 on that common tab is to give us like a bucket of keywords that we can work with a project management tool, and the rest will follow our streamlined strategy by picking relevant keywords that you’re already ranking for. that you’re not ranking too low. Right? For instance, I saw that plateau is your your ranking on the expedition for platinum. So if we can revamp this to give us quick wins, and very quickly the last Oh, yeah, the second basically, is that we should want a short paid ads campaign.



Now the reason for this is don’t have you don’t have an existing page ad campaign structure, right. But instead of targeting common keywords like we did for organic SEO, for this one, I suggest we target the missing keywords and I’ll give you the reason very quickly. Unlike their current organic SEO structure, which is somewhat available, been optimised, put it under half an existing page as campaign structure. So we need to take you people out of the safe space, which is your your branded keywords domain and brutally compete with others for short term wins. And the main point of this is to improve traffic. So if we are competing with this people, your targets your your competitors, rather, who will slowly creep into prospective customers mindshare, which is not there.


It’s not it’s not it’s not as much as you’d like it to be. So when we get to that space, where we are, we are seeing progress and sources, we can now take the best performing keywords and optimise it for engineers, basically for SEO, and then taper the ads. Alright, so it’ll give us short wins. And it’s going to like improve your traffic and it’s going to work simultaneously in tandem with the organic SEO. All right. Another thing is that social media is another thing is that you need to get active on social media and repurposing your content across LinkedIn first and Twitter.


Second, because that is where I noticed that most of your target audience are, alright. So make your group get a page and get it’s active. So it will gradually get people talking again and put you in the minds of prospects. And bonus points is when we’re doing this, we can also work out like a block structure a block strategy. You know, I don’t know the words you use simultaneously. So while we are working on this one, we can still work on the structure so that we’ll be deploying things that again, okay, I think I’m done.


Erika Varangouli 52:27

Perfect. God, you did amazingly well. Thank you. Sure. You know, this is also out of taken from life with clients like not having time and being pressing. So what questions does the class have for me, I moved my meeting by like, 10 minutes, so I can stay 10 minutes, you’re free to stay as well. But if you have to go, like in a minute, feel free to do that. So what questions do we have for me or feedback? Let me go because I know our time is limited.


So one thing I saw in Mae’s proposal that I liked, was that she thought beyond just organic search and ranking, right, so the proposals were including like other channels, other approaches to sort of target terms with a client that doesn’t really perform well. Also very competitive space with like, big brands like Asana, Project monday.com. Like there’s, these are very big brands, right? So I wanted to highlight that, and sort of say, remember, we’re doing content marketing, and content marketing goes beyond just one channel. Right? It’s, it’s, it’s supposed to be all encompassing. And even if at this stage, you know, organic search is what you see.


So Claude, you have like, all the social media that everyone was active on, that was amazing. Then in their proposal, I didn’t see like module unless I missed it, or I don’t remember any more about like, Okay, should we remain on all of those? Should we should we become more active? What should we do? So remember, and I remind this to myself as well, it took years of practice, that it’s not just about organic search on these a ties into yours as well.


Like in such a competitive environment as travel with a client that doesn’t perform well really, or doesn’t have a lot of trust. You need to look into suggestions to build their brand to build their trust signals, which can go way beyond like, you can go entirely another direction than building content for the website and blog posts. Okay, so I’m just saying, so it’s open to everyone. When you start this is the stage when you’re doing competitor analysis and market analysis and you see where your client is. Don’t limit yourself, just to search just to Okay, what does summer show Oh, these pages, these keywords, what are low competition and low search volume, maybe go for them.



Also that shows lack of ambition, your client always will think they’re the best. For some reason they’re not bigger than TripAdvisor or Asana. But in their minds, they are the best there is out there, no one else has such a great offering. So, you know, sometimes saying to them, okay, let’s just go for some few small keywords with like this, because maybe you can rank that is not the level of ambition, you would need to have us content marketers, we need to believe in our clients more than they do. Right. So we go in, and we tell them, Look, you have an amazing product, unless you don’t believe it’s sold. That’s a whole other question.


But it’s an amazing product. Here’s the situation, there’s nothing new. There’s the space is very competitive, people have gone in and they have bigger budgets on you. So you’re, you’re gonna have it hard to compete. Here’s your options, right? Don’t just limit your options to to search and blog posts, that that is like, rule number one, for me, especially nowadays, it’s gonna be harder and harder for anyone to compete in the SERPs the way things aren’t going.


So may I really like that? Be prepared when you’re going to a client with a content marketing suggestion to get? I don’t know, it doesn’t it won’t always go down. Well, if you propose to them to do paid, read, because they see it as a I’m not saying that, right. But they might see it as a sign of weakness, like, Okay, if I if I wanted to do paid, and I had the budget, I wouldn’t be paying for content, because paid also brings results straightaway. So may, I would suggest with a new client, not necessarily putting it as part of a proposal to begin with, but putting it as a question in the discovery phase that we discussed, right? What are you doing any paid campaigns?


And why are you doing or what are you doing? Or why are you not doing it? So then you assess if they would be open to discussing it or not. But it’s a bold move. And I applaud that. And one thing based off Mays presentation that I think I saw in some others may be fastest and aneisa. Don’t remember now, I think on music, definitely emphasis. Remember when you’re suggesting content, right, based on keyword gaps, you have to treat brand and non brand terms separately. So there were suggestions to target keywords that are branded keywords of their competitors. And this is a very touchy subject plus, I would say it’s very challenging, right.


So it’s a brand decision, whether you want to go for it or not, I can tell you, most of them would not want to do that. Secondly, it’s very hard to target them and be successful. And to actually have an impact so so be very cautious and filter your keywords separate your brand and non brand that goes for your client brand terms and for their competitors. So naturally, the gap research, keywords will come up that are branded and include their competitors keywords, they will come up as weak or missing most of the time, like your client will not be ranking as well or at all for a competitor keyword.


Do not make the mistake of including that as let’s go for it. This is this is primarily like a brand decision, then it becomes an actual business decision of is it worth doing that? Do does the intent match that? Would we ever rank for it? And why would we want to rank? How would we leverage that traffic? So So be very, very mindful and careful with all branded keywords. Okay, that that is another thing. I think I could go on forever. But unfortunately, I cannot. Here’s my suggestion. Because based on last week’s session, I discovered that that you most of you have more time to spend on the course than I thought you would. So which is amazing.


The presentations, the documents are all in the folder with the Assignments Plus the rest of them that have been delivered up until the weekend thing. So anything that will send to me the last few days, I will add, feel free to have a look through, feel free to take your time to look through what your classmates submitted and then Festus Oniisan, May, specifically who presented today, let’s take the conversation on our Slack channel. So say all right, who wrote this one who has this client I saw this in your proposal. I don’t understand it, please say more. Or I saw this and I really liked it. I might do the same. Let’s keep the discussion going.


I know I’m terrible with Slack most of the time but that’s just because I need to have the SEMrush slack on all the time. And then notifications get wild. But let’s keep it up there. Ask any questions give feedback, you know give kudos give whatever you want to your classmates and and keep this going All right, and we’ll see if we have an opportunity to do anything more with them because I really don’t think an hour is enough. But yeah,


Onize Muhammed 1:00:07

thank you very much Erika,


Erika Varangouli 1:00:09

Alright I was I cannot see anyone like your cameras are off. I want to give a clap. All of us, like mae, Onize, Festus. Thank you so much. It takes a lot of courage to present. Thank you so much for doing it today for us. And thank you all for today’s session. All right. I’ll see you next week.