Archives for July 2007

Winner of the TopRank Challenge

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I am happy to announce the winner of last week’s TopRank Challenge blog post contest with his nod to Stephen Colbert, “Fish Wavers & Bridge Namers – How the  Greatest Living American Reaches Unique Groups by Creating Unique Groups“. Congratulations goes to Mike with over 55% of the vote!

Mike’s winnings include a small cash award as well as his choice of upcoming Search Engine Strategies conferences.

Great job Mike for making the cut and thank you to all the TopRank team members that submitted articles to the contest.

Three Erics, Two Daves a Drew and a Barry

Eric Enge says Link Building is a Permanent Investment and I wholeheartedly agree

Another Eric (Holter) has posted his Websmart Newsletter in video format and provides a nice introductory explanation of web analytics (Urchin and Google Analytics) and how you can use that information for site SEO.

Yet another Eric (Marcoullier) says goodbye to MyBlogLog. Congrats on your success Eric and enjoy your family!

David Wilson of Braveheart Design posts a great interview with Rohit Bhagava on social media optimization.

Dave Winer argues that Feedburner is trouble because of their dominant position in the feed management space and I agree with his point that it would be ideal if there were more choices, if there was any kind of competition. Although, I think it matters more what Google does with acquired companies rather than their previous market position.

BIGLIST SEM SEO Blogs Update 072007

SEO Blogs

OMB brings you yet another fine mix of SEO blogs that made the BIGLIST this week with a nice mix of association content, yellow pages, social media, straight out SEO and in-depth observations about information retrieval. And so without further adieu, here you go. Enjoy!

  • SEMpdx Blog – The Portland Search Engine Marketing Professionals group promises to be the voice of the Portland search marketing community and uses the blog to publish association announcements, events, industry participation and observations. This is an excellent example of a Regional SEM Community.
  • Search Perspective – tmp directional marketing, the world’s largest Online Search & Yellow Pages Marketing Agency, publishes this group blog focusing on tmp’s “Point of View” as well as SEO, SEM and industry conferences. The blogroll is a bit sparse though.

5 Pros and Cons of SEO Consultant vs Agency

A reader commented recently about not wanting to hire an entire agency, but rather an individual consultant for search marketing services. From a service provider perspective, I’ve tried it “both ways” so to speak, working at an agency, then as an independent consultant and now with our Public Relations and Online Marketing agencies.

There are obvious advantages and disadvantages to hiring consultants vs an agency engagement, but over time (10+ years) I think I’ve gained a fairly practical and experience based perspective.

As I see it, here are a few of the pros and cons of hiring consultants compared to hiring search marketing agencies.

Hiring a search marketing consultant

Pros:

  • Specialized – you can get the best
  • Personal attention from a senior practitioner

Linkbait. It’s About The WOW.

Link Bait MiiWhen trying to describe link bait to someone outside the industry, it’s a bit hard to get the idea across. The problem is that link bait can be funny, sad, shocking, amazing and a bunch of other adjectives. Really, it’s not necessarily about what you create, it’s about the WOW factor.

The WOW factor is measured by your readers and how good they feel the story is. There is no way to know exactly how the public will react, even though sometimes you can estimate pretty well.

Think of it like the news. Millions of news events happen all the time, but how many do you actually see on TV? The big ones of course show up. With link bait, this is like taking someone that’s tops in your industry and having them do anything. More than likely, they’ll get lots of links out of it no matter how great it was. They have the following and so the WOW factor was imminent.

SEO with PHP & Blog Optimization

SEO with PHP Book CoverI’ve recently been reading a book, yes a real book, about search engine optimization and PHP. It’s a great overview on a handful of things you can do to optimize your PHP website.

It’s from Jamie Sirovich and Christian Darie over at SEO Egghead and is written programmer to programmer. If you don’t have a handle on PHP, then this book is probably not for you. But if you have some programming skills and want to learn more about SEO, I highly recommend this book.

Chapter 16 is all about optimizing WordPress for search engines. It walks you though the install and gives practical tips, code snipits and plugin recommendations to help any WordPress blog become a bit more search engine friendly.

Cast Your Vote – TopRank Challenge Contest

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The time has come dear OMB readers, to cast your vote for the best article in the TopRank Challenge contest. Participants were tasked with writing a post on a topic related to their area of responsibility and/or interest. I can assure you, cutting the selection to just three articles was not easy. Considerations included: relevancy to audience, content and style.
Please take a moment to read each of the posts below and vote for your favorite!

Which is the best article in the TopRank Challenge?

Search Marketing Blogs Update 071307

SEO Blogs

Have you noticed your blog has been dropped off the BIGLIST of SEO blogs? If so, you should know that we perform a periodic review of every blog on the list, nearly 400 of them, to ensure the blog is alive and active. No posts for 2 -4 weeks and it will be taken off the list.

Now on to this week’s update which includes two blogs and one very cool social media community for search marketing:

  • Hamlet Batista dot Com – This SEO blog promises a focus on the more advanced search engine optimization tactics drawn from personal experience with SEO consulting as well as affiliate marketing.
  • eCommerce Blog – Ethan from Baltimore based Groove eCommerce posts on this newer blog about industry and company news followed by topics ranging from SEO to analytics.

Sphinn Bookmarklet

Yesterday I gave out the Sphinn buttons, today you get a bookmarklet!

Sphinn This

To use the bookmarklet right click on the link above and bookmark the link. If you are in Firefox or Safari, you can also just drag it to your bookmarks bar. Then, when you are on a site with a great SEO/social media story, simply go to your bookmarks and hit the ‘Sphinn This’ button. You’ll then be sent to Sphinn.com’s submit page with the URL automagically inserted.

Enjoy!

[tags]Sphinn,Social-Media,bookmarklet[/tags]

Indexed by Google in an Hour

Today Rob Key from Converseon pinged me on how fast their work promoting reforestation through a video as part of an American Express promotion hit the Google SERPs. The project is a great example of the power of social media for a great cause.

In just 4 days the video (Second Chance Trees) ranks #2 for the phrase “American Express Members Project“. It actually ranks higher than the Amex web site for the project, which is pretty impressive with over 4 million search results for the term. Maybe after indexing this blog, the link above it’ll be doing even better. 🙂

Get Your ‘Add to Sphinn Button’ Here

You can now add a Sphinn button to your site to let visitors quickly submit your post to Sphinn, the SEO Digg clone from Search Engine Land.

Here is the button:

Feel free to download it and host it yourself. It also does measure up to Danny Sullivan’s button standards.

WordPress Code:
<a href="http://sphinn.com/submit?url=<?php echo get_permalink() ?>"><img src="http://www.toprankblog.com/downloads/sphinn.png" border="0" alt="Sphinn" title="Add to Sphinn"></a>

JavaScript Code:
<script type="text/javascript">
var URL = window.location.href;
document.write("<a href='http://sphinn.com/submit?url="+URL+"'><img src='http://www.toprankblog.com/downloads/sphinn.png' border='0' alt='Sphinn' title='Add to Sphinn'></a>")
</script>

I’ll be working on getting the Sphinn button into the social bookmark tool too in the upcoming week or so.

TopRank Challenge

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Inspired by Marketing Pilgrim’s past Scholarship contests (which resulted in this handy free e-book) where participants submit articles to be voted on, we decided to do something similar, but internally here at TopRank. An invitation to participate in a contest was sent to the team 2 weeks ago and 8 decided to take up the offer. Each participant has since submitted an article to Susan Misukanis and myself on a topic of their choice or from a list of suggested topics.

Susan and I have scored each entry for: relevance to audience, objective reasoning, accuracy and style, revealing the top 3 scoring articles.