Editor-in-Chief says journalists need to embrace SEO

Posted on August 9, 2012


A statement from the former digital editor-in-chief of a respected international news network has claimed that journalists need to “understand SEO”.

Eric Olander, who used to work at France 24, has highlighted how newsrooms throughout the world are increasingly focusing on giving their writing the SEO makeover. However, he went on to warn that by working backwards, it could affect the impact of articles on the web.

To ensure good rankings therefore, Olander said:

“Optimisation should be baked in as you’re creating the story, it has to be done on the content creation level because if you do it on a secondary level you’re changing the editorial structure of the story.”

He went on to say that this strategy is essential for every part of an article, saying:

“Headlines are optimised … leaders are optimised, and first paragraphs of text are optimised.”

It is for such reasons that recruitment processes in newsrooms now involved an interrogation of an individual’s SEO credentials. Olander knows this, saying:

“Now, when we run newsrooms we expect that the journalist has an understanding of SEO.”

Having an ability to instantly write well optimised articles is a huge advantage in the digital media workplace. Articles can be posted faster, less re-works are needed and naturally ranking is improved.

Constantly developing a skill set to keep on top of the game is important therefore.

Maintaining knowledge of the basics is also important though, such as being accurate with your metadata, linking externally and completing keyword research.

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