Predicting the next big thing in Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) may seem impossible, with many referring to search engine ranking as voodoo or black magic. While Google keeps its complex algorithms tightly under wraps, leading into the beginning of 2020, experts have identified that detection and reward of positive sentiment is the latest addition to the Google algorithms.
While this news may be daunting for many sales copywriters, as an SEO copywriter, I am welcoming the news.
SEO is a long, hard game. It’s not a set and forget activity- it’s something you need to pay attention to for life.
To rank well in Google, Bing, and the other search engines, you need to consider what the search engine crawlers are learning about your website, what your competitors are (and aren’t) doing, and how humans are using the internet.
However, the SEO gamechanger for 2020, is that Google is now displaying positive sentiment titles over negative sentiment in a ratio of 3:1.
To help you create a little more positive sentiment, I’m going to share with you what it is, why it should be as important to you as it is to Google, and how to spread positive sentiment through your website.
What is positive sentiment copywriting?
Sentiment copywriting is the art of influencing readers through written content. From the way you write, you can influence both positive and negative sentiments from your readers.
With the use of power words, a writer can elicit a strong emotional response in the reader. Take the picture above, for example. “I hate nothing about you.” It’s cute, minimising the negative power word “hate” with “nothing” to create a positive sentiment, love.
Power words are an ancient literary tool and are firmly engrained in marketing copy. They give a clear direction as to whether the reader should feel negatively or positively about the information they are receiving, therefore, influencing an emotional response.
For this reason, in journalism, it’s frowned upon to influence sentiment in news articles as the primary goal is to provide neutral, factual stories.
However, considering that most internet use is for entertainment and purchase research, it comes as no surprise that using power words to create negative and positive sentiment is the most powerful way to get attention online.
How significant is detecting sentiment?
As humans, emotion directs many of our decisions and Google’s goal is to give us exactly what we want, even when we aren’t quite sure what it is we want.
We love laughing at cute animals, hearing touching stories about miracle babies, and we can’t resist watching horrific first-hand accounts of tragedies.
And, Google knows that we use the internet to get our fix.
Google’s goal, along with the other search engines, is to deliver precisely what humans are searching for. Google wants us to have the best user experience.
As the smartest and most popular search engine out, Google uses the most complex algorithms and crawler process to find the most desirable content to feed us.
Sentiment analysis has been utilised since the early 2000s in monitoring and interpreting product reviews and social media activity. It can provide valuable insights into customer opinions and behaviours and is easily accessible. Also, more recently writing assistance tools have introduced beta-testing of tone checkers.
So, I, for one, was not surprised to hear that many experts are saying that the ever-evolving Google has learnt to detect sentiment.
What is user-experience copywriting?
You should already be familiar with the term user-experience; it refers to the way your target audience is going to move through and experience what you’ve created, from a webpage to a product.
It includes aspects like design, the normal paths that the eyes take and how the colours and layout will influence the way someone navigates around your website.
While it’s likely you’re aware of this from a pure design perspective, the way text is included, omitted and which text is selected are also components of user-experience.
My goal, as an SEO copywriter, is to create a fantastic user experience through providing engaging content. Influencing search engine ranking by including keywords and other SEO tactics is a significant component, yet comes second to spinning a tremendous story to follow.
How does positive sentiment apply to UX?
As humans, emotions drive many of our decisions; therefore, user-experience has always included influential negative and positive sentiment.
Often, you’ll see negative terms used to identify an issue, then the positive sentiment copywriting saves the day by offering the solution.
You may have noticed landing pages you’ve visited using headings that identify a pain-point, then quickly offer their product or service as a solution.
Some outcomes of sentiment copywriting are:
- They make it clear the problem they’re addressing.
- They highlight a solution.
- They appeal to the human desire to feel understood and heard.
- They evoke empathy and sympathy.
- They entice an emotional connection.
Through the inclusion of both negative and positive sentiment, you can get your reader, webpage visitor or user to connect with what they’re seeing and give you your desired conversion.
User-experience versus search engine optimisation.
Being optimised for search engines is 100% important. But, imagine if Google rewarded you for amazing SEO tactics by putting you on the first page, then sent visitors to your page who didn’t like your content.
Google’s reputation is then tainted, and they’ll save face by punishing you.
Google has the most users globally than the other search engines combined- and they’ve earnt that by delivering the best user-friendly content. Updates to their algorithms, such as the positive sentiment checker, are only there because Google has worked out that we, as users, are favouring positive titles and articles, even if we didn’t realise it.
If you were using the internet in the ’90s like I was, you’d remember times where you landed on a page that was just a list of keywords that offered no value to you, so you bounced immediately. That annoyed Google possibly even more than it annoyed you as they’d failed to deliver the best result.
So, while keywords are a critical aspect of SEO, modern search engine algorithms and crawlers have developed to find the best content by trying to detect the best user experience, despite keyword saturation.
Therefore, the development of positive sentiment detection and favouring shouldn’t come as a surprise and is the biggest thing to hit the SEO world this year.
How can I create positive sentiment on my website?
The simple option is to employ the services of a specialist copywriter, like me. However, these are the main areas you can address:
Even industries that deal with negative aspects of life, like funeral homes, can focus on the positive impact their work does to ease suffering and allow the natural grieving process to take place.
1. Create an environment full of positive sentiment.
If you’re in a positive state of mind, writing with positive sentiment becomes natural.
To offer a great service to your customers, I’m sure you’re already focusing on excellent customer service. But, fostering a positive environment within your workplace through how you set up your office and how you interact internally actually makes a more significant impact.
If you’re working mostly alone, like myself, the home office environment should make you feel positive. If you can’t create that space at home, consider finding a shared workspace.
2. Develop your brand identity.
Through your brand identity and brand voice, you can create positive sentiment.
Your brand identity or brand persona is the personality of your brand. Many specialists now use archetypes to distinguish a brand persona and to guide both design and copywriting for their website, points of contact and marketing efforts.
The kinds of personality traits covered by brand identities include strong and dependable, wild and motivational, thoughtful and kind, and many more.
If you know your brand persona, you can then write confidently in the voice of that personality.
3. Establish your point of impact.
Whatever you’re doing online, you should have a strong idea of the kind of impact your product or service will make. Even if you think you’re just blogging about a topic that’s interesting to you, you still need to know who you’re trying to impact and why you’re sharing what you’re sharing.
So, whether your product has a strong positive impact on the environment, or to the way a niche group of individuals will live their lives, you need to know what that impact is.
That way, when you write, you can tip the scales to highlight the positive sentiment of your product or service, even if you need to highlight the negative pain point that you’re addressing first.
4. Create positive sentiment in your Copywriting.
Yes, it still comes down to your writing.
Be positive, be sentimental, understand who your brand is, who you’re talking to and make some positive chit-chat. And, use positive power words, particularly in your titles.
Think of your positive sentiment copywriting like meeting new people. If you want to make a good impression, you don’t want to brag, but you do want to talk about positive things. The fastest way to turn people off is to dwell on the negative.
Sure, you might talk about the trash building up in the oceans, and how terrible that is, but move on to talk about the fantastic developments in ocean scooping vessels.
A little positive sentiment to close- thanks for your time.
It’s a hard slog reading through an entire blog online, so thank you!
Now, with a little positive light shed on the Google algorithms, you’re on your way to loving the SEO game almost as much as I do.
Google loves to give searchers the best results, and if you want to rank high, you need to be offering the best. And, it’s clear that part of being the best in both Google’s and the world’s eyes, you need to be delivering positive sentiment 75% of the time.
Don’t forget, delivering great content that oozes positive sentiment; you need to create the right kind of work environment first. Then, know your brand, exactly who (and why) you’re helping, and bring it all together with positivity and a sprinkle of power words.
Finally, if you’re still stuck, let me help you out with my SEO copywriting, proofreading and brand identity services.