Business owner Fran Murdy presented all the symptoms of full-blown Search Overload Syndrome (SOS), Microsoft's term coined in its recent commercials for Bing, when he fessed up in a forum discussion not too long ago at "I'm in desperate need of help to find keywords for my business." Soon afterward, fellow marketers came to Murdy's aid, offering their collective prescription for a good keyword optimization strategy.

Among their tried-and-true tips:

Conduct savvy keyword research. "I'd recommend that you step back from trying to find keywords for the product you sell, and ask yourself, 'What content will attract my buyer?'" suggested commenter Pete Caputa. That approach should produce more searchable content.

Use keyword-discovery resources. To generate the richest set of ideas, explore a variety of tools, including Keyword Grader, Wordtracker, and KeywordDiscovery.

Pick the low-hanging fruit. Commenter Georgieva advised, "Target the people who are already searching for you … There is somebody out there who is looking up your brand online or is actively interested in your industry—or location-specific niche."

Measure keyword performance. Track the keywords driving actual traffic and leads to your site and keep producing relevant content based on those results.

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