"Seeing as how the V.P. is such a V.I.P. shouldn't we keep the P.C. on the Q.T. 'cause if it leaks to the V.C. he could become a M.I.A. and then we'd all be put out on K.P."
However, while I could tell stories and make jokes about the growing number of acronyms in the internet marketing world, I'm not here to discuss internet marketing acronyms. What I do want to talk about is a simple strategy that can save you a world of time and money because you will no longer be chasing after an empty piggy bank.
After conducting keyword research and determining the keywords to target for your SEO efforts, run them through a short PPC campaign. Why take your SEO keywords through a PPC campaign before you do any link building or on page optimization? The reason is simple. SEO takes time and effort. You cannot afford to waste time on keywords that will not deliver results. You need to be confident that the keyword phrases you target will bring the results you desire (in terms of leads, profit, etc.) once you make it to the top of the search engines.
The first step after finding the keywords you would like targeted is to build a landing page as quickly as possible. Make sure that you build the page with conversion in mind rather than SEO. However, while building the page for conversion, do not completely ignore SEO. Be sure to have keywords in the page name, title and content, but do not spend extra time optimizing the page. After the page is finished, I recommend starting a PPC campaign targeting the keywords. This can provide valuable information quickly. After running the campaign for a short time (I would recommend at least 500-1000 unique visitors), you will know if the keyword will convert at an acceptable rate. The question you should be asking is "Can you make money on that keyword phrase?"
By using PPC to test your keywords, you will discover whether the keywords are profitable. Think of it this way. If you spend all the time necessary in SEO to rank well for a keyword, get a ton of traffic but no business, then I say "so what?" That is good for bragging rights at the family party where no one else understands internet marketing, but bragging rights do not help pay the mortgage. I would much rather rank #1 for a keyword phrase that brings 20 unique visitors a day and converts at least 1 person into a sale. Wouldn't you?