In school, we all knew two types of students. Student A was always on time, contributed to class discussion, asked questions and was very engaged. Student B arrived late, didn’t contribute or ask questions and barely paid attention. When the professor tallied participation points, student A, of course, received a higher grade.

As you work on your digital marketing campaigns, think of Google as your professor. If your attitude is more like student B’s, don’t be surprised when Google doesn’t give you the type of “grade” your business needs to succeed.

Search engine optimization (SEO) is complex but breaks down like this: When prospective customers go to Google or other search engines such as Bing or Yahoo! to look for your product or service, they’re more likely to see your website pop up if you “participate” online.

Every time you post on social media, post a new blog on your website, send out an email marketing campaign that links back to your website and social media pages, you’re “participating” and will increase your chances that Google will find you organically.

This doesn’t mean that all you need do to appear on the first page of a Google search is flood the internet with content. In fact, you should be leery of SEO companies that promise first-page results because sometimes they use tactics that could upset Google. If that happens and you’re removed from Google’s index, prospects may never find your page.

What works best is creating compelling content that speaks directly to your ideal consumer. Don’t create posts that you think Google will like. Create content that offers real value to your customers and prospects. Offer the best user experience.

Google will recognize that people are visiting your website, returning to it and sharing your posts. Eventually, Google will push you toward the top of its list.

Bottom line: Think of Google as your professor.

Your weekly video or written blog post is you raising your hand to ask a question. Your social media posts and the likes and comments you give and receive are you contributing to the class discussion. Your email marketing campaign that links to your website and social media pages is you showing up on time.

All of the meaningful, engaging content that you create and distribute through your digital marketing channels is your participation online.

If you found this article helpful, please participate by liking, sharing and commenting.