Archives for July 2006

Blogging Interactive Marketing – ad:tech Chicago 2006

Next week is the next installment of the most popular event for interactive marketers, ad:tech. This year’s Chicago conference promises outstanding keynotes on multicultural marketing, creativity and new ways for marketers to reach customers. Sessions range from search marketing to word of mouth to the development of personas.

The event will be covered on the ad:tech blog by Steve Hall of Adrants, David Berkowitz of 360i, Lee Odden of TopRank Online Marketing (me) and Carly Lesser from CDG Solutions. The sessions I plan on blogging include:

  • Organic SEO Fireside Chat with the Experts – Monday 10:30
  • Blogging / RSS / Podcasting / Vidcasting – Monday 11:45
  • Linking and Optimization for Better Rankings and More Traffic – Monday 2:00

Planet blogbeat acquired by FeedBurner Overlords

The news is out on the Blogbeat.net site and the FeedBurner blog of the blogbeat acquisition by FeedBurner. On the blogbeat site a comic newspaper “They Daily Analytic” headline reads, “FeedBurner Invasion! Planet blogbeat acquired by FeedBurner Overlords”.

Blogbeat functionality will be incorporated into FeedBurner’s StandardStats service and integration will be complete during fourth quarter 2006. Current blogbeat customers will get a refund as the new service is free. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The addition of blogbeat technology should further enhance FeedBurner’s lead as a RSS resource for bloggers or will it? The reviews I’ve read about blogbeat haven’t been that great. I did a trial a while back and went back to the trusty analytics package I’ve been using for years. Integration into the FeedBurner control panel would be convenient though.

Feeding Journalists With Deli.cio.us

Todd Defren posts a nice rundown on using del.icio.us for an online PR initiative for bzzagent. Deli.cio.us is used to create content of value to journalists covering WOMM – the word of mouth marketing industry of which bzzagent is the focus.

What are we doing here? Providing any writer who is interested in WOMM with a customized research page containing the top news in the space, including first-hand reaction — on a daily basis — by a WOMM industry pioneer. For media types, et al., who subscribe to the RSS feed of that del.icio.us page, that’s a daily dose of Thought Leadership!

Social Search

A few recent articles on social search got me thinking about how much search has changed and continues to change. In a meeting with a staff member last week I was explaining the notion of “collective intelligence” and how millions of individual editorial decisions people make through social search and tagging is taking the user search experience to a new level.

Over at iMedia Connection, iProspect’s Naga Krothapalli talks about the pros and cons of social tagging and search. The pros include: an alternative to browser based bookmarks, ease of use due to tags and the “theoretical” improvement in ability for the search engine to provide relevant and more accurate results. The cons: limited number of user adoption and doing tagging as well as limitations of tagging.

Don’t expect to much from your blog right away.

Believe it or not, blogging is not a magic bean that will bring you fame and fortune right away. It’s more like a baby. It takes time and patients while it grows.

At first, your blog is born! You think he’s the coolest thing ever and you tell all your family and friends. They check him out and say how cute he is. Most people won’t care or even know of your new born, so he won’t be gathering to much excitement from the world just yet.

But, as he grows and you feed him knowledge and spend time with him, he’ll start to spread his wings. Before you know it he’ll be joining social groups, get his own following and soon he’ll be prom queen! Wait…. Hold Up… I think my analogy just fell apart.

PR Newswire Testing SEO Press Releases

PR Newswire recently tipped me off to a test press release service that promises SEO benefit:

“Off-peak press release with SEO via PR Newswire Reach news sites, portals, search engines, media”.

Apparently it is to be a 5 day listing on the home page of PR Newswire. There are 10 releases to start and they are being auctioned off over at eBay. If my bid wins, I’ll post about the process:

“Winner of this auction may distribute one news release of 400 words or less via PR Newswire’s US1 Newsline. Distribution timing will be at PR Newswire’s discretion, Friday through Sunday.”

Traditionally, PR Newswire has been the go-to source for investor relations and similar announcements as well as a channel for corporate PR news announcements. The test offers a press release of 400 words or less to be distributed at a time of PR Newswire’s choosing.

Site Targeting

Google Blogscoped posts an interesting explanation of the browse sites to target feature on Google AdWords that Inside AdWords announced on Friday. It provides categories of sites with an idea of the number of impressions each site gets per day. Besides  browsing sites by category, you can also target sites by describing the topic, list URLs to check for availability or similar sites.

You can also target a campaign by demographics such as income, gender or ethnicity based on comScore data.  I am curious if there are any head to head comparisons of MSN AdCenter demographic targeting and Google.

RSS Buttons for Your Blog

A while back Thomas aka Twistermc, whipped up a handy tool for creating RSS subscription buttons to place on blogs. This makes it easy for the reader to subscribe to the blog using their favoriate RSS reader or aggregator. (See the buttons down the left side of this blog) This particular tool has been very popular and is the source for many, many links to Online Marketing Blog and to the blog marketing tools page over at TopRank.

I was checking out some of these links and noticed that some pretty interesting referrers. There are quite a few prominent SEOs using the RSS Button tools. I think that’s pretty cool actually.

Three WordPress Plugins You Must Have for SEO

WordPress is great, but the default install isn’t as good as it could be. There are hundreds, if not thousands of WordPress plugins available. Finding ones that work well and add to your site’s optimization can be tricky, but here is what I recommend.

  1. Akismet or Spam Karma – Both plugins block spammers from automatically filling your comments with spam and links to unwanted sites. An anti-spam plugin is a must unless you like spending hours a day cleaning up after spammers.
  2. Optimal Title – This simple plugin re-writes the blog post’s tile start with the post name not the site name. It’s best to always start title tags with unique information and then proceed to generic.

Blog Address: Directory or Domain?

Recently I fielded an emailed question from a reader as to which is better home for a blog: as part of the company web site (www.company.com/blog/) or as a separate domain (www.companyblog.com)? I get this question often and see it mentioned in the forums as well.

There are many factors that influence whether your blog should be part of your site or it’s own domain name including:

  • Branding
  • Hosting platform
  • Blog application (software or hosted)
  • Resources for promotion
  • Resources for content production
  • Purpose of the blog
  • Timeframe for expected results
  • Target audience

Fortune Interactive Goes Sci Fi with SEMLogic Upgrade

Andy Beal’s company Fortune Interactive has upgraded their SEMLogic system for identifying search engine optimization opportunities ala SWOT that allow a comparison of client sites to competing sites as well as enhanced interactive display options.

Here’s a demo video of the SEMLogic virtual reality module with Mike Marshall narrating and you’ll see where I get the “sci fi” reference.

I beleive Fortunue Interactive will be exhibiting at the upcoming Chicago ad:tech if you want to see this system in person or you can probably get a demo via the SEMLogic page.

Search Marketing Events

If you’re looking for sources of information on search marketing, conferences can be a great resource. Or. if you’re a conference junkie like me, then you’ll find the SEOBook “Must See SEO Events” calendar exceptionally useful.¬† Some disclosure here, I am editing the calendar along with Aaron.

Some of the conferences listed include:

  • Search Engine Strategies
  • WebmasterWorld Pubcon
  • ad:tech
  • DMA conferences
  • MIMA
  • eMetrics Summit
  • eTail
  • Shop.org Summit
  • Search Insider Summit
  • OMMA
  • Affiliate Summit
  • SEO Roadshow
  • SEO Bash
  • And more

If you know of a conference that deals in some way with search marketing (SEO or SEM) then drop a comment. Regional events are welcome as well.