Five Mind Traps that Can Doom Online Copywriters (and How to Liberate Yourself)

When you embrace keyword research and master SEO copywriting, you can transform yourself from search engine “victim” to Google “partner.”

Every new medium is rich with opportunity and fraught with danger.

From the beginning, the commercial Internet has been an unparalleled “Information Highway” for helping users make smarter, healthier and generally better-informed decisions about products and services.

At the same time, the Internet has been a conduit of myths, urban legends, and intentionally deceptive information.

Somewhere between the wrongheaded notion that “all information should be free” and the equally asinine idea that online journalism should be completely free of commercialism, a few copywriters lost their professional compass.

Let’s clear up any foggy thinking about the value of keyword research and SEO copywriting.

Mind Trap #1: You think keyword research and copywriting for search engine optimization interfere with your creative process and stifle your ability to write clearly or communicate effectively.

Liberating Idea #1: Keyword research can help you discover and open up new markets. Search engine copywriting can enable you to execute additional strategies for growing and targeting your audience.

Mastering the discipline of adding keyword phrases to your prose is creative, mentally challenging and fun!

SEO copywriting with keyword phrases can be more satisfying than crossword puzzles, acrostics, cryptograms and other word puzzles. Plus, the rewards for SEO copywriting professionals are monetary!

Mind Trap #2: You think copywriting for SEO is unnecessary because your publishing company already enjoys a good reputation, a large online following, and a high Google ranking.

Liberating Idea #2: Google doesn’t know anything about your company’s reputation. It doesn’t recognize you as an authority or an industry leader.

If you have a high Google ranking for one or two keyword phrases without really trying, it could be that there is little competition for your keywords. And you could lose your high ranking to a new competitor in a femtosecond.

But if you master search engine optimization, you could enjoy a high Google ranking for numerous keyword phrases. See Liberating Idea #1.

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Mind Trap #3: You think copywriting for search engine optimization is all “smoke and mirrors,” that nobody knows what really works, and it’s too darn hard to figure out.

Liberating Idea #3: Keyword research and search engine optimization can be learned and mastered.

Search engine optimization is not a myth and it’s not a mysterious unknown. True, the “rules of the game” are constantly being refined, as Google tweaks its search engine algorithms.

But by relying on Mequoda’s continuous research, and with regular practice, you can achieve significant, measurable, high-ranking results for your targeted keyword phrases.

Mind Trap #4: You think search engine optimization should be the responsibility of webpage designers and code geeks, not copywriters and editors.

Liberating Idea #4: Search engine optimization copywriting is empowering!

Copywriters and editors who assume responsibility for keyword research and search engine optimization enjoy seeing the direct result of their creative efforts.

You can take charge of your written communication and can measure its effectiveness in search engine rankings and page views.

(Plus, there is professional satisfaction in wrestling control away from the code geeks that goes far beyond the monetary!)

Mind Trap #5: You think copywriting for search engine optimization is somehow unethical or beneath the dignity of legitimate online journalists.

Liberating Idea #5: Search engine optimization copywriting is a great service to your audience.

Don’t fall for the church vs. state myth. You can give valuable, objective advice to your readers and still recommend your company’s products, without compromising your integrity.

SEO copywriting by online journalists helps readers find the information they are seeking by enabling Google to locate, and rank highly, the best and most relevant editorial content on the Internet, without regard to commercial interest.

Why wouldn’t any responsible online journalist or advertising copywriter want to be on the winning side of that equation?

Your thoughts?

Please add your comments to this blog post.


Peter A. Schaible is Mequoda’s Chief Copywriter. For more of his unique perspective on copywriting, you can subscribe to his complimentary series on Targeting Your Prospective Customer by Type: How to Position Your Brand to Trigger an Emotional Response, available at No obligation. No upsell.



    The problem in the health field is that people become masters of SEO. Thy just don’t know what they’re talking about when it comes to health I formation. Health blogs from people who have no credentials and just spread urban myths about health are really destroying the health information avalable. How do you deal with that?

    Sue B.

    Great article Peter. Thanks for bringing much needed perspective!


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