The last session I attended on day two of the Chicago Search Engine Strategies conference was RSS Blogs and Search Marketing moderated by Danny Sullivan.
Speakers included: Dick Costolo – FeedBurner, Nan Dawkins – RedBoots Consulting, Greg Jarboe – SEO-PR, Stephan Spencer – Netconcepts, Amanda Watlington – Searching for Profit
First up was Amanda Watlington:
Blogs Good and Evil
Shows quotes from
BusinessWeek: Blogs Can Change your Business
Forbes: Attack of the Blogs
Offer platform for businesses to provide a more personal method of communication.
Can provide feedback through comments and trackbacks
Can put out negative information
Blogs Continue Grow
70,000 per day as of Oct.
13% updated weekly
1.2m posts per day
Blogs are a threat to mainstream media
Blogs are changing roles of search marketers to be able to:
Brand and reputation monitoring/management
Content strategy and deveopment
Link development and site publicity efforts that include consumer generated media
Total use: aware RSS user 4%, unaware RSS user 27%, 69% do not use
Many users of RSS don’t know they’re using RSS.
Benefits of RSS:
- Build stronger customer relationships
- Avoids email spam
- Easy to maintain
- Proven traffic generator
Uses of RSS Feeds:
- Syndicating your content
- Product announcements, uses, tips, articles.
- Customer communications
- Press room
- Career channel
Example of sites that offer content to syndicate on your web site.
LifeTips – 1 tip per day
RSS drives traffic – 6.8% CTR on RSS feeds to site (simple feed)
Manage your RSS Feed:
1. Create the feed
2. Validate the feed
4. Eliminate old content
Optimize your feeds:
- Use kw in the title < 100 characters
- Write description as if it were for a directory < 500 characters
- Use full paths onlinks and unique URLs for each item
- Each feed should have a keyword theme
- Include images for branding
- Submit your feeds
- Claim your feed at Technorati and subscribe to your own feed
- Make your feeds available for syndication – FeedRoll
- Use media specific feeds for iTunes and Yahoo! Media
Measure Circulation, Viewership, Readership
Pheedo – RSS Ads outperformed email by over 26%
Shortage of online ad inventory, creating an interest in new sources
Rss advertising is complex (user driven) and compelling
Next up is Stephan Spencer, a self proclaimed “RSS Junkie”.
RSS is a Killer app.
Example: Google search for “TrustRank”. #1 result is from Slashdot RSS feed. Ranking due to the number of links to the feed.
Take RSS to the Next Level
Give it Away:
News alerts, latest specials, clearance, upcoming events, arrivals, tools, search results, book revision history, top 10 best sellers, project management activities
For blogs: latest posts, latest posts by category, latest comments per post
– Full text, not just summaries
– Watch out for SEOs using your feed content as search engine fodder and hoarding the link gain.
Shows examples of ecommerce feeds.
Make it easy to Subscribe:
- 1-click add to your favorite aggregator
- Add autodiscovery tags
Make your listings in the Yahoo SERPs display the Add to My Yahoo link – by adding your blog to your My Yahoo page. Then use Pingomatic after you post.
Track Subscriber Behavior: Feedburner
Capture Link Gain:
Encourage links through RSS directories/engines
Keep your RSS feed url uses your own domain
Clicktrack your links and pass link gain by using 301 redirect to se friendly url
Personalize the Content
Customize – through checkboxes on signup page
Allow user to be anonymous
Give them the option of subscribing via RSS or email
Recommended Resource: Rok Hrastnik’s “Unleash the Marketing Power of RSS”
Next up was Greg Jarboe from SEO-PR.
My battery is almost dead so I don’t know how much of this I’ll get.
18.5 m feeds (feedster), 22.2 m blogs (technorati)
Also on the panel was Nan Dawkins from Red Boots Consulting as well as Dick Costolo from FeedBurner, who promised to help me convert my http://feeds.feedburner.com/OnlineMarketingSEOBlog feed url to use the toprankblog.com domain.
Note to self: buy another battery or a new laptop!