Friday, December 11, 2009

With Real-Time Search, Comes Real-Time Spam - WebProNews Video

Earlier this week, Google announced that it has begun integrating real-time search into its regular search results. Incidentally, Rae Hoffman, CEO and Co-Founder of Outspoken Media, began playing with the new feature and discovered some alarming results.

The first concern Hoffman noticed is a spam issue. Upon tweeting about Viagra, she found that her results were showing up in Google’s results. She was even able to drop links into her tweets that people could access directly from Google.

Secondly, Hoffman uncovered reputation management issues with Google’s new integration. An unhappy employee or competitor could easily damage a company’s reputation. During a session at SES Chicago, Dave Naylor even mentioned that he might have to clean up his Twitter stream over fear of losing business.

Thirdly and probably the most serious of the issues Hoffman revealed is the safety concerns for children online. Through a series of tests including the highest level of safe search, Hoffman was able to reach out to kids who searched for queries such as Sesame Street and Miley Cyrus. Unfortunately, sexual predators could easily do the same. Scary, huh?

There were actually even more discoveries Hoffman was able to uncover that she did not disclose.

Many people believe Google rushed its real-time integration to respond to the recent real-time efforts Bing has made. Hoffman predicts that Google will either have bad results for a while as they fix their problems, or admit they made a mistake and deal with a reputation management problem.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Search + Social = Better ROI - WebProNews Video

Are you utilizing search and social media together? According to Lee Odden, CEO of TopRank Online Marketing, many people keep their search and social campaigns separate. However, if they combine their efforts, they would be more capable of reaching their goals and even expanding them.

Typically, people use social media for branding and customer engagement. With search, people want to increase sales and leads by being more visible. But a joint effort produces better results. Take, for example, the Wal-Mart Check Out blog. It has 16,000 inbound links and is great for engagement, but it has a severe lack of SEO. The site ranks for phrases such as “checkout” but not for any of its content.

On the flip side, IKEA is actively involved with social media, but the company applies SEO to it as well. Odden says that people and companies that optimize their social content drive traffic, build relationships, and reach customers all at the same time.

In addition, many people falsely look at social media as a direct marketing tactic, although it is not at all. Odden said:

“Measuring ROI as a direct result of social media is not the right question because social media is a platform, it’s not a tactic.”

He went on to say that making that comparison is similar to asking where the ROI is in email. The use of a platform determines the results, not the platform itself. If your goal is to increase your revenue, you must look at ROI. If not, you can find value in social media through relationships, branding, and visibility.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

PubCon 2009 - Las Vegas Convention Center: November 9th-13th.

PubCon Vegas - November 10 - 13, 2009 Las Vegas Convention Center

When it comes to creating marketing buzz online, webmasters pretty much invented the concept. PubCon is four days of leading edge education and networking in over 90 sessions featuring 200 expert speakers in Social Media, Affiliate Programs, Search, and SEO/SEM. In its 8th year, PubCon was founded out of the rich and diverse base of WebmasterWorld forums. These aren't people who just talk about this stuff - these are people who do this stuff.

The A-List alpha attendees to PubCon are among the most highly pursued demographic in the online marketing world. Highly educated and computer savvy, they're early adopters of the latest web technologies and trends. These are the folks that any forward thinking company wants to reach and network with.

  • Where Las Vegas Convention Center in fabulous Las Vegas Nevada
  • Format Seven Track Educational Conference with Exposition Hall
  • Topics Search, Web 2.0, Net Marketing, SEO/SEM, Affiliates, Domainers, Video, Multimedia : aka: Webmastery.
  • Levels PubCon is scaled mainly from professional to expert experience levels (heavy content). we start where other conferences finish.
One of the best ways to keep up with the latest news about PubCon and other events is to visit the PubCon LinkedIn social networking site group, the PubCon Facebook group, and the PubCon Twitter feed.

This is one of my MOST Favorite Internet Marketing Events of the year, hope to see YOU there:
Marci Rosenblum/

Friday, October 02, 2009

Using Creativity to Grow Your Email List - WebProNews Video

Although email marketing is one of the oldest forms of Internet marketing, it is still one of the most effective marketing strategies. Growing a valuable email list is a challenging process, but as Colby Cavanaugh of ExactTarget explains, marketers must be creative and integrate popular media into their email marketing campaigns to be successful...

A lot of people’s initial impression of email marketing efforts is negative. However, Cavanaugh says that the market has evolved and become so sophisticated that many marketers are not even trying negative efforts due to the bad results they produce.

Instead, they are capitalizing on creative opportunities. One creative form of email marketing that has seen extensive growth recently is text messages. Marketers are using sporting events, billboards, magazine articles and more to start a conversation with consumers.

The marketer urges users to send a text and opt-in. In return, the marketer is able to follow up with an email and send users to a “dynamic” landing page. Additionally, marketers can enable the content to be distributed through social media platforms such as Facebook.

Cavanaugh shares how ExactTarget offers many solutions to allow companies enhance communication and embrace email marketing opportunities. Most recently the company partnered with Coremetrics to help marketers produce very relevant and very targeted communication based on consumer behavior.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Video: Fixing Broken Landing Pages - WebProNewsVideo

Does your landing page seem to be broken? Although it looks great, maybe it isn’t producing many conversions. According to Tim Ash of SiteTuners, the best way to increase those conversions is to make sure the landing page is achieving its goals...

What if everything on the landing page appears to working properly, but it is still not bringing conversions? How do you know what’s broken? SiteTuners developed a tool called Attention Wizard to help users answer that very question.

The tool uses artificial intelligence algorithms to replicate visual human behavior. It then reveals a heatmap over the landing page to show the areas that visitors are drawn to.

Attention Wizard is currently free in private beta. Users can register to test the tool here.

Monday, August 24, 2009

10 Ways to Distribute Your Content And Extend Your Brand

10 Ways to Distribute Your Content And Extend Your Brand

Share everything. Make it easy.

A positive experience with your brand lingers with those who encounter it. It can become part of their life experience, and people enjoy sharing life experiences.

Therefore, it’s important to provide opportunities and simple ways for people to embrace and share your brand content.

Here are 10 ways to distribute your content and extend your brand:

  1. Multi-Channel Distribution
    Use multi-channel distribution mediums like Posterous allows you to assemble your content in, and send it via email. Simply send an email to Posterous with your formatted content attached. PDFs, text, images, even video are immediately forwarded to multiple social sites of your choice. Once distributed, users or fans can easily share your branded content with others.
  2. Widgets
    Use widgets like Share This, Add to Any, or Add This to enable single-click sharing on other web sites and social media pages.
  3. Micro-blog
    Create an account and build a following of constituents, friends, like-minded individuals, clients and prospects on a micro-blogging site such as Tumblr, or Twitter. Post short messages with information or links to your content and users can re-blog posts of interest. You can also feed your micro-blog to your web site, Facebook page or other online destinations for real-time updates.
  4. iPhone apps
    Aggregate your content from multiple sources into a custom-branded iPhone app where fans and affinity groups can follow the content from your blog, web site, and social communities, all on one portable device.
    Give your content away in the form of portable ebooks, white papers, digital audio and video downloads. Spread the word.
  6. Flash drive
    Hand a prospect or influential person your content on a portable device like a branded flash drive. Encourage them to share its content with others. They’ll remember you and your company when they use the drive for their own storage and file transport needs.
  7. Incentivize others to share
    Create a contest or sweepstakes to pull people to your content, then encourage and incentivize them to share it with others.
  8. Think about the copyright
    Use Creative Commons to manage the proper usage of your shared content on sites like Flickr; it protects you, the author, and facilitates liberal sharing of your content.
  9. Share the responsibility for content creation
    Extend the reach of your content to different audiences and demographics by collaborating from the outset to make your content, “our content.” When people share in the process of content creation they become invested and far more apt to share the experience and results with people they know.
  10. Branded Watermarks
    Tastefully embed a logo or other watermark in the corner of your photos and encourage users to make them their own in device backgrounds or other digital applications.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

A Very Special Thank You to the "Web Success Team" for getting my Facebook story out... Banned by Facebook! One Woman's Story.

Banned by Facebook! One Woman's Story.
By Eric Pangburn, Contributor, Web Success Team

While the social media marketing site Facebook may be something you are intimately familiar with and use on a daily basis, the name “Marci Rosenblum” may not exactly ring a bell. So who is Marci Rosenblum and why should you know about her? As it turns out, Marci was banned from Facebook — a situation that we may all face at some point or another — and what she learned during her experience may have significant implications on your Facebook habits, as well as your overall online marketing experience.

We Depend on Facebook, Until…

Facebook is of course almost as ubiquitous on the Internet today as Google is. It is certainly more popular than the other large social networking site (which we won’t mention by name since the MySpace team may still be feeling a slight sting at having been overtaken just last January). Facebook marketing has simply captured the imagination of the collective cyberspace public in ways that few Internet phenomena have before and probably will for a while. It is a great way to build your business online and can therefore be potentially invaluable to your web success.

Most people start out by using Facebook as a means to keep in touch with friends and family. Facebook makes it easy to post pictures, chat with acquaintances, send them personal messages, join in on group discussions and quizzes…the list is virtually endless, and if there is some way that you can reach out to someone and be reached back in return, there is probably a way to do that in Facebook.

Many enterprising individuals have since used Facebook as a means to touch base with their customers. There is no Facebook rule that disallows this, and Facebook has proven to be quite a potent tool for any business. The same benefits that Facebook affords you for personal use can be wielded to great results for your business, online or otherwise.

So far so good. But just like any other privately owned web site, there are a number of rules and regulations implemented that may not always be clear to you, and in fact may seem downright unfair. This is where Marci comes in.

Marci's Story

Marci Rosenblum is one of the many people on Facebook who has a hugely popular Facebook profile. Plenty of good content, a steady stream of regular visitors…it appeared that Marci was way ahead of the Facebook pack. Unfortunately, Marci was banned only a couple of weeks ago, for reasons that weren't quite clear to her. To the extent of Marci’s knowledge, she was in full compliance of all of Facebook’s terms regarding use. This included the clause that stated that users have the privilege of “unlimited posting.”

As someone who has relied on Facebook for many years and has spent a considerable amount of money on ad expenditures, this banning was quite distressing for Marci Rosenblum. The impact of all the lost contacts is quite significant as you may well imagine.

Lost in (Cyber)Space
For someone with that many contacts, Marci losing her Facebook account was akin to losing her cell phone, PDA, or personal directory of contact numbers. Put yourself in her position, and you can possibly understand the feeling of frustration at virtually being cut off from crucial contacts. Since so many people rely on Facebook for their web presence, losing an account is almost like losing your online identity!

Apparently, the cause of all Marci's Facebook problems was her placement of links on her “fan” page as well as her “profile” page. Through some unwritten rule in the Facebook terms of agreement, this was apparently enough to warrant a ban. No matter what you may think of Facebook's policies, the loss of all those contacts for such a seemingly minor infraction appears to be excessive. Even more alarmingly, a look at Facebook's terms of use shows that they can ban an account for any reason whatsoever, which apparently covers Marci’s case.

Things could have been easily avoided if Facebook maintains an air of approachability and openness with regard to their policies. Barring that, there certainly is no reason why they would have to be so hard to get a hold of, as Marci later found out for herself.

Like all people who have an issue with a company, Marci wrote a letter to the Facebook management asking why her account was banned and how she could be reinstated. If only it were that easy. Marci in fact had to write no less than five letters before she got a response, and even then it wasn't exactly the answer that she was hoping for. Her account was supposedly banned for “spamming”, a practice that Marci felt she wasn't guilty of. In fact, there are currently numerous other Facebook accounts that are clearly guilty of spamming, yet strangely remain allowed to carry on with their activities.

How to Avoid the Facebook Ban-Hammer
Based on Marci’s Facebook experience, we have pinpointed a few things to keep in mind that will help you avoid the fate that befell her:

* You could post as many links as you want on your “fan” pages, but posting links on your on your “profile” page is a definite no-no.
* Posting the same links on your “profile” page that you have on your “fan” page can get you banned.
* The Facebook site administrators can be extremely difficult to get a hold of. You will have to send them a lot of emails on five different email addresses, before you can expect to get a response, so persistence is key.
* Keep a backup of all your Facebook contacts. As Marci found out so harshly, even getting your Facebook account reinstated will not get your contacts back. If your contacts are essential to your business — as they probably are! — back them up!
* In spite of the apparent vagueness of the Facebook terms of use, you simply have to try and make sure that you conform to all terms regarding use. They can be very hard to reach as Marci has seen, so any thing you can do to avoid a banning would be for the best.

Making the Best of Facebook
All this isn't meant to downplay all of Facebook’s benefits…and they are considerable. Nevertheless, a clear picture of what you can expect regarding your use would go a long way in helping you get the most out of your Facebook account. Make sure that you post links only on your “fan” pages, and you can continue to use Facebook for its many networking benefits.

Build Web Success!
The Web Success Team ( specializes in building and marketing direct response websites that take full advantage of the latest developments on the Internet. The Team has an arsenal of effective web strategies, online tools and proven techniques to promote your products and services. Plus, we’ll show you ways to increase the amount of qualified traffic to your site through the expanding “social web” and how to convert visitors into buyers at a higher rate of return.

> Find Marci Rosenblum at Web Success Traffic:

Friday, July 31, 2009

And Then There Were Two - WebProNews Video

Yahoo and Microsoft have finally partnered in a search agreement. A deal has been anticipated ever since Microsoft tried to buy Yahoo for 44.6 billion in early 2008. This current proposed deal however, looks nothing like that original offer. The companies have not disclosed all financial terms of the deal, but it does not appear that Yahoo received any upfront payment...

In summary, Microsoft will power Yahoo Search and Yahoo will become the exclusive search advertising provider for Microsoft’s search engine, Bing. Microsoft’s AdCenter will operate self-service advertising for both companies, but each company will maintain its own separate display advertising business and sales force.

In an interview with WebProNews, search industry leader Danny Sullivan summed up his thoughts by saying what the deal meant for each company. He said, “[A] big win for Microsoft, a lot of questions for Yahoo.”

The deal will likely face a close antitrust review from regulators especially regarding Steve Ballmer’s claim that the partnership would provide a stronger competitor for Google.

It is still early, but nonetheless, there are many unanswered questions associated with the deal. Could Yahoo have bargained a better deal? How will Google respond? Is the deal a good move for Yahoo? How will the partnership influence the future of online advertising? What are the impacts on the SEO industry?

Provided the deal is granted regulatory approval, Yahoo and Microsoft said they hope to have their partnership finalized by early next year.

Source: WebProNewsVideo

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Checking Out What the New Firefox Has to Offer from WebProNews Video

Firefox 3.5 is here and loaded with a plethora of improvements and new features . Sometimes with all of the download upgrades and new features that we are bombarded with it is hard to keep track of what tools are really available to us. This week, our very own Mike McDonald sat down to give you a rundown of some of the top features, improvements, and a few things to look out for with Firefox 3.5...

Some of the most buzzworthy features of 3.5 are its performance features. It leaves a smaller footprint, which means that it uses less of your computer’s memory while it is running. Firefox has also improved their graphics engine with improved Color Profile Support which, depending on the quality of your monitor, will make your images more crisp and vibrant. On top of that, page load is faster and memory management has been improved by continuously cleaning up any unused memory, but the top performance feature Firefox has added is the Super Speed feature. With Super Speed the browser is 3 times faster than Firefox 3 and 10 times faster than Firefox 2.

The new browser is also fully customizable. It has over 6,000 add-ons, which is a tremendous improvement from previous versions. In addition to being able to mold Firefox to fit your personal style, you can add different search engines, edit toolbar preferences, form the navigation buttons to your liking, and a multitude of other customization features.

The location bar, referred to as the Awesome Bar, has also been drastically improved. It now allows quicker navigation to the sites you like to visit, you can simply type in a site you’re looking for and it delivers all matching results. This feature is particularly useful for those hard to remember URLs. The Awesome Bar also offers one-click bookmarking and improved tagging.

Firefox 3.5 has a lot of handy features, but beware that compatibility has been an issue for some people, so before you upgrade be sure it is compatible with everything you need to run. Here we have just touched on several of the newest improvements but there are still many many more. To here more about these features watch the video above, and you can download Firefox 3.5 for yourself here.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

How Much Are You Willing to Pay for News? - WebProNews Video

Recently the editor of the Financial Times, Lionel Barber, made a statement that most newspaper websites will be charging for content within a year. It is no secret that the newspaper industry has been hurting lately. With so many people turning to the web for their news, newspaper sales are down and the newpaper organizations have been trying to figure out a way to earn revenue online...

During his speech in London, Barber said that he is unsure of how newspaper organizations will be charging for content. He stated that charging on an article-by-article basis is an option, as well as charging a monthly subscription fee. Rupert Murdoch of News Corporation made a statement back in May proclaiming that his newspaper websites would likely be charging for content within a year as well, and a survey sent out recently by the New York Times asked subscribers if they would be willing to pay a monthly subscription fee of $5 for access to their news content online.

Another aspect to take into consideration is what charging for content will do to bloggers. Countless bloggers rely on the free news provided by online news organizations for their content. Can bloggers afford to pay the monthly subscription fees? But, more importantly can they really afford not to pay the fees?

A move like this will either make or break the newspaper industry. If a subscription fee is put in place news sites could charge more for online ads because the ads would be reaching a more targeted demographic of subscribers, but would the number of readers drop so significantly that it would not pay off for the newspaper organizations in the long run?

No matter which way you spin it, the newspapers have to do something to compete in the digital age, and maybe charging for content is just the ticket. We will just have to wait and see.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Google’s OS to Challenge Microsoft? - WebProNews Video

Googlers Sundar Pichai and Linus Upson announced on Wednesday that the company was embarking on a new project: the Google Chrome Operating System. After the Web browser launched last year, many people anticipated a Google OS as the company’s next move...

Google Chrome OS is open source and will initially be intended for netbooks; however, the system is said to be equipped to power large desktop systems as well. The three main aspects of the operating system are speed, simplicity, and security. Although Google will construct its own windowing system, the new OS will run on top of the kernel from the open source Linux OS.

According to the Google blog post making the announcement, the OS will not be available to consumers until the second half of 2010.

As Google prepares to enter the operating system market, many questions come to mind. First of all, is this a direct attack against Microsoft since Bing appears to be making legitimate progress? Will Google’s OS exist as a serious contender to the alternative operating systems? How will consumers and computer manufacturers react? Will Google be hit with more antitrust investigations?

Although there are many unanswered questions associated with this news, one thing that is certain is that Google has just taken on a challenging mission.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Michael Jackson Dies: Twitter Tributes Now 30% of Tweets

The death of one of the world’s greatest pop stars is having a global impact, but social media brings into sharp focus the scale of the world’s shock and sadness. Previously, we might have learned of a pop star’s passing via TV, or a friend or coworker: now knowledge is immediate, and mourning has become more public than private: a collective expression of loss... Read more:

Michael Jackson Dies: Twitter Tributes Now 30% of Tweets

Posted using ShareThis

Mobile Video is at a Tipping Point

Just this week, we’ve already seen a number of apps rush to take advantage of the device’s video capabilities, with Kyte updating its app to support video recording, editing, and upload, and Posterous creating a way to instantly distribute your mobile video across multiple social sites... Read More:

Mobile Video is at a Tipping Point

Posted using ShareThis

Monday, June 22, 2009

Up Close and Personal with Bing Team - WebProNews Video

The buzz around the announcement of Microsoft’s new search brand Bing is still going strong. Users are commenting on everything from Bing’s interface to the quality of the results. WebProNews caught up with Bing team members Nathan Buggia and Ramez Naam to get some first-hand information on the engine.

The three main areas of focus for the new search product were:

1. Best possible results
2. Organized experience
3. Key tools to help users decide

Ramez says the quality of the search results have changed and the speed of the engine is better. Bing is continuing to work to cut down on the user’s time searching by simplifying tasks. To organize the search experience, Bing has a 3-column layout and a “table of contents” in the upper left-hand corner.

With the table of contents, Bing looked at how searchers view results and refine their queries and created categories accordingly. For example, if you search for a Honda Accord, the categories could be reviews, recalls, repair, videos, and images. Bing also provides key tools to help users make decisions regarding specific tasks such as travel and product purchases.

One of Nathan’s favorite features about Bing is the Best Match capability. With this feature, if it’s positive that a query is a navigational query, Bing will hide the regular algorithm results and showcase the “best match.” For example, for a query for, Bing will highlight the UPS site and even include a search box directly on the results page to track packages. Bing is also doing Entity Extraction on pages to pull out user reviews and obtain a deeper knowledge of the content on the page. The purpose of this is to include more valuable content in the search result captions to better serve the users.

What about Bing’s impact on SEO? Nathan says because the content publisher’s goals and Bing’s goals are the same, it leads to more targeted traffic. The categorized results show up to 20 results per page, which means everyone isn’t fighting over the top 10 blue links and the small businesses have a better chance of being seen.

Bing is doing some pretty cool things, and it has already been given some good reviews. But as users continue to test Bing out and see all that it can do, the big question remains: “Does Bing pose a threat to Google?”

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Proof That Social Media Efforts Pay Off - WebProNews Video

Arianna Huffington launched the Huffington Post as a news content and blog site in 2005. The site quickly became a strong advocator of community engagement and involvement thus turning it into a social news site. James Smith, the Chief Revenue Officer of HuffPost, credits the success of the site to that social evolution, saying:

“It’s [Huffington Post] almost a social media site with news as the topic of conversation.”

The site logs over one million comments each month.

In the above interview, James encourages other content publishers to push for active communities as well. He explains how implementing polls, thumbnails, and popular statistics can all add extensive social value to content.

Publishers that use social media know that it requires close monitoring. Most of the time publishers closely monitor their social efforts in order to manage the negative response. But did you ever think about how you could also benefit from closely monitoring the positive response? James says publishers have the opportunity to take advantage of the positive surges by further promoting them.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Social Media and Online Video Top Growth Charts - WebProNews Video

Nielsen Online and Ad:Tech joined together to create a landscape report looking at the global online media. The report compiles Nielsen Online data in the areas of online video, social media, audience, mobile, and more.

Typically, the online space doesn’t change dramatically from month-to-month or even year-to-year. But according to Charles Buchwalter, the Senior Vice President of Research Analytics at Nielsen Online, in the past 5-6 years, “this industry has transformed itself.”

The growth is evident not so much in the number of users, but where users are spending their time and how much time they are spending. Not surprisingly, the two biggest areas of growth over the last 2-3 years are online video and social networks. The significant growth of these two areas proves that innovation is still happening despite the current economic climate.

Additionally, there are other areas that are showing positive developments in the midst of the recession. Healthcare, packaged goods, and telecommunications were big spenders in traditional media and were slow to come online. However, those industries are now stepping up their efforts on the Web.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Video Optimization Tips From Ad:Tech San Francisco - WebProNews Video

Making a good video can be difficult enough; you shouldn’t have to struggle to get it in front of individuals and search engines after wards. So at Ad:Tech San Francisco, The Search Agency’s Drew Hubbard gave some tips on how to optimize video for search.

One key point is that “it’s all about the content on the page.” For now, content producers should still assume that videos are invisible to search engines. Be sure to come up with good titles, good tags, and good keywords.

Otherwise, if you’re trying to decide between hosting a video yourself or turning to a site like YouTube or Vimeo, there are a couple of things to take into consideration. Going the DIY route will grant you a great deal of control over the clip. At the same time, letting YouTube handle things may save you money, and it can put also the video in front of a larger audience.

Hubbard pointed out that, according to some statistics-tracking firms, YouTube is actually competing with Yahoo for the title of number two search engine.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Don’t Assume Anymore: Select Keywords That Work! - WebProNews Video

Do your keywords support your site? Unfortunately, the answer is no for many people choosing keywords for search engine optimization purposes. According to Mike Murray of Fathom SEO, people depend too much on tools such as Keyword Discovery, Google Keyword Tool, and SpyFu. These tools can be helpful, but there is also a great amount of research on your part that needs to be done...

There must be a web page to support every keyword. Similar words do not count; they must be exact. Make sure your keywords are a good investment. If you choose the wrong keywords, you’re going to lose money and waste time.

Mike refers to people who do this as “people with their heads in the clouds.” He says people who dream up keywords are not going to have success in their efforts and need to come back to earth and be practical.

Mike suggests looking at the following factors when selecting a keyword list:

- Keywords in domain name
- Website analytics
- Competitors’ rankings
- Inbound links
- Where you ranked today, which page ranked, and on what search engine

Also, look for value in your PPC campaign. If someone is paying for a keyword, then it should be taken under consideration for your SEO program as well. It is possible that the same keywords could work for both programs.

Lastly, don’t look at who is ranking number 1 or 2. Look where websites are ranking that are similar to your site. You could be comparing your website, which is operated by 3 people, to a website that is run by a large corporation. Mike recommends first looking at the website’s age, size, and other factors before taking action. You may need to address other issues on your website to compete effectively.

SEO is a long process and the investment into keywords should not be taken lightly. After looking at the above factors, let’s again ask the question: Do your keywords support your website?

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Marketing Strategies for Mobile - WebProNews Video

As mobile devices become more and more popular, the importance mobile marketing becomes greater as well. Cindy Krum of Rank-Mobile always keeps us updated on what’s going on in the mobile market and this video from SES New York is no exception.

Cindy actively promotes having only one website by making your existing website provide mobile capabilities too. The same goes with marketing strategies. Cindy suggests that businesses integrate their mobile marketing strategy into their existing marketing strategy to get the best results.

The mobile Web is not just the current trend; it’s here to stay. Not only Cindy, but also many others including Dr. Vint Cerf, believe mobile will play a large role in the future. Based upon that information, Cindy believes if you embrace mobile now, you have the opportunity to pull ahead of your competitors.

So how do you integrate mobile into your overall marketing strategy? Here are a few quick tips from Cindy:

- Follow all traditional and local SEO best practices
- Provide info relevant to mobile users
- Submit your site to mobile search engines and directions
- Don’t rely on: Embedded images, Objects, Scripts, Frames, Flash, Pop-up Windows, Mouse-over trends

There are many mobile applications for search, which are taking feeds from existing search engines and integrating results into their own. Determine where they are getting their data from and make sure you are ranking well there. For mobile SEO, Cindy suggests coding in XHTML, employing multiple style sheets, and using CSS.

Friday, March 27, 2009

SEO Tip: Create Different Landing Pages for the Same Product - From

Great SEO tip from

If you sell a small number of products, it’s a good idea to create different landing pages for each product. Each of these landing pages should be optimized for a different keyword.

There are at least two benefits to doing this.

1. Your search traffic will increase because you’re targeting more keywords.

2. Your conversion rates will increase because your landing pages have relevant content related to the keywords. Relevancy is one of keys to increasing conversion rates.

Here’s a video that shows two sites that are using this SEO tactic.

Friday, March 20, 2009

What’s Happening with Social Media and Businesses? - WebProNews Video

Chris Brogan and Lee Odden have been teased about their striking resemblance to each other, so WebProNews decided to feed to the humor and interviewed them together. Both Lee and Chris are a lot of fun, and they are also very knowledgeable in the Internet marketing industry.

In this video from PubCon South, the two discuss social media and where it fits into marketing. Chris says that we are seeing more and more larger companies embracing social media.

There are also many people using social sites because they think they can “get rich quick.” As companies determine how to effectively use social media, Chris predicts the number of “get rich quick” people will rapidly decline.

Lee agrees with Chris’s outlook and points out that companies are now discovering exactly where they are getting the most return and capitalizing in those areas. He says social media has now become a natural part of marketing.

There are however, risks involved in social marketing if companies don’t have a solid plan in place when they start their social efforts. Lee’s company, TopRank Marketing, suggests that companies construct a social media road map, which requires them to identify their audience, behaviors, and specific objectives.

After these factors are determined, companies can decide on what their social strategy is, whether it be blogging or social networks. From there, companies need to choose what tools they are going to use and decide how they will track their success. When measuring progress, Lee says it is important to measure goals in actual conversions and not simply by the number of friends or followers the company acquires.

Chris follows up on that point by explaining the importance of putting the “physical connector” back into social media. The overall marketing plan should contain traditional marketing tactics, which includes a physical side, as well as Internet marketing strategies and social media.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

More older Americans are going online than ever...

The Internet Is Getting Gray...
More older Americans are going online than ever.

According to the Pew Internet and American Life Project, from 2005 to 2008, the largest jump in adoption of Internet usage was by users ages 70 and older. Internet penetration among people ages 70 to 74 increased by 19 percentage points from 2005 to 2008. For people 75 and older, the increase was 10 percentage points.

What sets older Americans apart is their online activities. Older Americans aren’t as likely as younger users to play games, watch movies, use social networking sites or read blogs. What sets older Americans apart is their online activities. Older Americans aren’t as likely as younger users to play games, watch movies, use social networking sites or read blogs.

The majority of Internet users are people under the age of 45, but growing numbers of older Americans are going online. That is an opportunity marketers can exploit.

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Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Making Twitter Work for You - WebProNews Video

Most people dwell too much on the “rules” or accepted expectations for sites like Twitter. In this video, Michael Gray points out that there is no right way or wrong way to use Twitter. He says the only right way is when you are getting out of it what you want and what you’re putting into it...

What works for one person or business may not work for you. Therefore, it is important to determine your goals early and to do whatever you have to do to meet your goals.

Michael does give some basic tips that everyone could adopt and practice to build their reputation in the community. They are:

- Be polite
- Make friends
- Start conversations
- Ask questions
- Answer questions

Most people prefer tweets that are not self-promoting. Michael says bigger brands have more flexibility in this regard, but even they should not take advantage of it. Twitter is about engagement and most self-promotions do not encourage it.

The value you receive from Twitter is ultimately determined when you identify your goals and work to meet them. It’s not about how many followers you acquire. What really matters is how many of those followers actually know who you are and are helping you meet your goals.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Search Marketing Evolution - WebProNews Video

As search has developed, the end user has also undergone behavioral changes. Universal and blended search have played a lead role in the user’s changes. Many times, searchers don’t know what they want when they search and the blended results offer a number of different options for them to choose from. Mike Grehan of Acronym Media told WebProNews in this video that we must look at these developments when we think about search in the present as well as in the future...

Grehan and many others such as Bruce Clay have said that ranking is not as significant as it once was, especially after universal and blended search rolled out. Universal and blended search have also opened up a whole new playing field for people who before didn’t have the opportunity to be noticed. These users are now able to be seen and heard through their clicks, their tags, their ratings and reviews, etc. Grehan says these “signals” the end users are sending are very powerful to the search engines.

So what does all this mean to SEO? According to Grehan, it places a strong emphasis on “engagement” and “connectivity.” SEO will become more complicated because users will demand a much richer experience. Monitoring the results will become even more important than ever since users will be producing more of their own content and even interacting directly with brands.

All this information and more is compiled into Mike Grehan’s new book which is set for release in August. His thought paper “New Signals to Search Engines: Future Proofing Your Search Marketing Strategy” can be downloaded at

Sunday, March 08, 2009

SEO Metrics to Replace PageRank? - WebProNews Video

Rand Fishkin and SEOmoz introduced their tool Linkscape at SMX East and WebProNews was there to get the story. We followed up with Rand at SMX West to get an update on the tool.

Rand prefaces the discussion by boldly stating that they are “a few months away from reversing Google’s algorithm.” If that does happen, just know that WebProNews broke the story. :) As we all wait on that to occur, Rand tells of a different approach that SEOs can implement...

Traditionally, SEOs look at PageRank to determine how well they rank and how and why someone ranks above or below them. Rand says this methodology is not much better than random guessing. The actual correlation that SEOmoz found is that basing actions on PageRank is only about 3 percent better than guessing.

He instead suggests acting upon data driven metrics. Take advantage of third-party data to estimate traffic competitively. For this, Rand recommends sites such as Compete, Alexa, and Quantcast. There are also tools that Rand recommends for predicting search engine rankings. They are Yahoo Site Explorer, PageRank, and Linkscape.

Rand strongly advocates this idea of bringing mathematics and statistics into SEO. He does however, believe that not one single metric should be held as the key. Link popularity is still the most prominent factor by nearly 75 percent and is followed by keywords and content.

Friday, March 06, 2009

comScore Reports on Search Growth - WebProNews Video

According to comScore year over year data, the U.S. has a strong search market. (It’s great to read a sentence that has the words “market” and “strong” in it, huh?) In this video, Jenni Tafoy of comScore gives us a positive report based upon their data...

To be exact, comScore found total U.S. searches to be at 18.7 billion, which is up 38 percent year-over-year. These numbers are a result of more people (7.1 million specifically) being online, people searching more days out of the month, and people conducting more searches per day.

Consumers are becoming more and more reliant on search. Search engines have seen a 32 percent growth and interestingly enough, non-search engines have also seen tremendous growth. Jenni says this research shows how marketers can expand their campaigns outside of the traditional search engines and into search areas such as video, local, image, and social networking sites.

YouTube has shown 100 percent growth, which is massive. Local has grown 38 percent, and image has grown 32 percent. Social networks driven primarily by MySpace and Facebook show 49 percent year-over-year growth.

Even with those statistics, Jenni still encourages marketers to continue their campaigns with traditional search engines. She advises marketers to utilize both search areas. Video search, local search, image search, and social networks will only continue to grow, but traditional search engines are also holding their own especially with the increasing growth of universal and blended results.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Make the Most of Your Online and Offline Marketing Campaigns - WebProNews Video

As a result of the economic crisis, retailers are more concerned than ever about the return their marketing dollars are generating. In this video from SMX West, Ryan Gibson of The Rimm-Kaufman Group explains how retailers need to understand which online and offline programs are profiting them the most and capitalize on those areas...

Offline marketing interactions with customers involve TV, radio, print, direct mail, or catalogs. Online marketing interactions include social media, content/display, search, and email. Offline conversions come by phone or by going into the store. Online conversions occur through a website or by email.

In a perfect world, all customers would either react only to online marketing methods or only to offline marketing efforts. Unfortunately for marketers and retailers, it’s not a perfect world and customers mix it up. Customers may search online, place a call to the calling center, go to the website, or go into the store before they take action. Every customer behaves differently which makes if difficult for marketers to track their online and offline marketing programs.

Ryan says marketers and retailers have to understand their customers. Observe the customer and be aware when they’re talking about you. If they are talking about you on social media sites, listen to them first and maybe even connect with them.

Do not however, forget about offline marketing efforts. Understand the customers sequence of action and which programs they are using to find you. Once you realize where your value lies, maximize those programs to their fullest potential so that you do not miss out on any profit.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

SMX West: Solution to Marketer/Developer Relationship Barrier - WebProNews Video

The relationship between developers and marketers has recently been a hot topic at industry events, and SMX West was no exception. An entire track was devoted to the topic at the recent show. In this video, Nathan Buggia of Microsoft Live Search says the barrier between developers and marketers goes all the way back to the very definition of each.

Marketers need data such as customer information. They need to have the ability to run experiments and update the text and content on their site. Developers also need data, but they need keyword and audience research. In addition to that, they need to be given all the details and structure of each project and then adequate time to complete them.

As business gets more competitive, especially online, Nathan emphasizes how the need is even stronger for developers and marketers to work together. He says that business success really depends on marketers and developers working together effectively.

The barrier between the two is more difficult for larger companies because there is usually a large marketing department and a large development department. Smaller companies are able to come together more often and be more open about the overall business strategy.

So, what is the solution to breaking down the barrier? Nathan says communication is the answer, and ideally, it starts from the very beginning. He and Vanessa Fox have created a conference based solely on this idea of building a strong and effective relationship between marketers and developers. Everyone is invited to attend the first O’Reilly Found Conference taking place June 9-11th in Burlingame, CA.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

John Battelle Predicts the 2009 Search Industry - WebProNews Video

Predictions are exciting. They’re even better when they come from a credible source, someone such as John Battelle. He has been giving yearly predictions on the search, technology, and media industries since 2004 and has been quite accurate. WebProNews caught up with Battelle at SMX West and asked him about a few of his predictions for 2009.

has been the topic of a lot of people’s conversation this year, so it is really no surprise that the company made Battelle’s list of predictions. Specifically, the prediction reads:

“Microsoft will gain at least five points of search share in 2009, perhaps as much as 10.”

The giant company now stands in third place behind Yahoo and Google with a 6-10 percent holding. So how are they going to gain search share? Battelle says the company is very serious about winning the search game.

He also points out the company has a lot of money and that the world is essentially driven by money. One way Microsoft could increase their search share is to buy Yahoo, AOL, or even Firefox. Another option he discloses is that Microsoft could make a deal with a company such Dell or HP.

Yahoo makes another one of Battelle’s predictions. Speaking on behalf of all the recent dire news about the Sunnyvale-based company, Battelle says:

” I think Yahoo’s coming out of a long winter.”

He says Yahoo’s new CEO, Carol Bartz, is a very capable leader for the company and will help to revive its purpose. He still suspects Yahoo will make a search deal with AOL or Microsoft, but says:

“I will not count them [Yahoo] out.”

Although it’s not one of his direct predictions for 2009, Battelle talks about a new form of search that will become more and more prevalent with time. As he explains in this video, search is our interface to the Internet and the way we navigate. The new interface would allow Web users to search in forms other than text, in forms such as image, video, and sound.

As stated earlier, John Battelle has been very accurate in his yearly predictions, so it will be interesting to see how 2009 plays out.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Micro Campaigns to Target Customers and Make the Telephone “Ring” - By

Is your website under performing? Not producing enough targeted traffic, leads or sales? Then it is time for a change of online marketing tactics. You should consider developing niche micro-site campaigns to target customers and make the telephone or email “ring.”

First let’s define the problem. You may be a medium to small company with a number of products or services. The questions I ask my clients are: Do your products or services relate to each other? Is your customer base the same for each of them? Or do customers need to be marketed to differently? What are your unique selling points? Are your messages clear, concise and quickly understood?

To address the above concerns, here are 8 strategies to get better results and boost sales:

1. Look at the Big Picture: Keep it simple
The old adage, “less is more” holds true for the web. Visitors view a website in chunks, scanning to see what catches their eye and engages them. If there are multiple messages or conflicting ones, the viewer won’t take the time to sort them out. They’re gone in less than 10 seconds. It is counterproductive to jam everything into a website, all that does is make it cluttered and confusing.

Your micro campaign should be direct and to the point. They are single page or 2-3 page websites that target a specific product or service. If you need to have a lot of content to explain your products or services, consider a 1-2 minute video. Make your pitch concise and simple. Visitors will appreciate the clarity and you will project a professional image and instill confidence . They will react positively, recognize that you are not wasting their time because they can understand it quickly. Then they are more apt to respond to your message or call to action.

2. Think Out of the Box: Be creative and innovative
Never get too comfortable with what you are doing or how you are selling your company’s products or services. You need to reach those customers that aren’t responding to this method or approach.

You can tailor a mini-campaign just to those potential new customers (i.e. a more youth oriented audience). This does two things: it won’t isolate your more traditional viewers and it won’t conflict with your current offers or messages. In marketing terms, we call this the low hanging fruit — ripe for the picking, providing you get there before the competition. Again, get creative, think out of the box, make an impact, and take a risk!

3. Make an Immediate Impression:
Campaigns should get their attention with a sense of urgency, a timely call to act now!
Now that your message is clear and concise and you have their interest and attention, close the deal with a sense of urgency. If you are selling products, have time-dated specials with real value and savings; for a service, offer something value added and have the first 10 people to call will receive… Use of a flash element to draw their attention can be effective. Graphics should enhance the branding, never overpower it.

4. Target New Customers: Develop new markets.
People like to think of themselves as unique, individuals, and not part of the herd mentality. You can capitalize on their self-image by addressing new customers in ways that will appeal to them. Whether it is a lifestyle, the dream of a better quality of life, or as a means to an end — making their life easier. Remember, different markets will require alternative approaches. Tailor your branding and customize your message. Then of course test and track your sales approach. Get feedback from customers, new and old, how they use your products or services and then create a niche campaign directed to their specific needs.

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