Lee Odden

Day 1 Chicago SES

I arrived in Chicago last night and had dinner at Harry Carey’s with Andy from WebCertain. We perused the conference Hilton pub afterwards and chatted it up with the attending SEO/SEM conference revelers. After short chats with Bruce Clay and David Warmuz of Trellian, it was off to bed.

Today should be a busy one and I plan on attending the following sessions:

Advanced Track – Searcher Behavior Research Update

Advertising Track – Earning From Search & Contextual Ads

Vertical Track – Global Search Landscape

Advanced Track – Advanced Search Term Research Tools

SEMPO is having a party after and will be announcing preliminary results of their annual survey. I am very much looking forward to that report. 

Lee Odden

TopRank Sends 2 Speakers to SES Chicago

Next week Danny Sullivan’s Search Engine Strategies conference comes to Chicago Dec 5-8. A few notes about this conference from today’s Search Engine Update newsletter:

  • Record advance registrations – all your colleagues, clients and competitors will be
    there
  • More sponsors/exhibitors than any prior Chicago event
  • Best conference program ever for Chicago

TopRank Online Marketing will have two speakers at this event: SEO Manager David Temple and myself.

David will present on the Global Search Landscape day 1 along with Nacho Hernandez, Lucas Morea and my good friend Andy Atkins-Kruger who is the Managing Director at UK based SEO/SEM firm, Web Certain and President of the SMA-UK.

I will be on a panel covering News Search SEO on day 2 with Greg Jarboe, Nan Dawkins and Sally Falkow presenting. I will also be blogging several of the sessions day 1, 2 and 3.

Lee Odden

RSS Advertising Pros & Cons

Lee Odden     Blog Marketing, Pubcon, RSS

One of the great things about attending conferences is that you get to connect with old friends and meet new ones. At Pubcon in Las Vegas I bumped into RSS/Podcasting/Blog/SEO/SEM guru, Amanda Watlington several times.

Amanda speaks at a variety of marketing and technology conferences and recently published a white paper on the pros and cons of RSS advertising. She makes some excellent points about what adoption rates really are and the need for consumer education.

“As RSS advertising proliferates, the discussion is shifting from a debate about whether or not it is appropriate to include ads in RSS feeds to what is the best strategy for using them. This briefing reviews the main points made by proponents and opponents of RSS advertising, provides insights into what impact advertising is having on adoption of RSS and recommendations for those who are considering advertisng in RSS feeds.”

Lee Odden

Domain Name Traffic Monetization

Lee Odden     Pubcon, Search Marketing, SEO

Frank Michlick posts about a trend in purchasing domain names citing articles from Business 2.0 and the Wall Street Journal.

Interestingly, last week at the Pubcon search engine marketing conference, I met people from two different domain name broker/buyer/management/monetization companies: Moniker.net and Oversee.net.

During my discussion with the fellow from Moniker, a prominent SEO mentioned he’d spent $1000 the night before (had to get his fix) buying up domain names for the purpose of parking them to monetize traffic.

To be honest, I had noticed people doing this, but did not realize the momentum it has gained as an advertising practice and method of generating revenue.

Update: Here’s an interesting site I found that offers a way to monteize your unused domains: http://www.trafficclub.com/

Lee Odden

Pubcon X Wrap Up

The conference portion of Pubcon ended yesterday. Exhibitors pulled down their booths promptly at about 5pm. It would be great if there was more time in between sessions to visit the exhibit hall though. Overall, it was a great show and opportunity to connect with many of the leaders in search marketing.

Yahoo drew a lot of attention to the Yahoo Publisher Network (YPN) program and seems very committed to building a great program for publishers and advertisers.

Yahoo also announced the availability for blog publishers that are participating in the beta YPN program to place ads in their RSS feeds. That’s something that I will be testing with this blog very soon. Feedback is welcome.

Lee Odden

Pubcon X – Link Building

Lee Odden     Marketing PR Conferences, Pubcon, SEO

Linking is still a critical part of helping sites rank higher in search engines and to drive traffic. This session included linking legend, Eric Ward, Jim Boykin of WeBuildPages and Bill Hartzer of MarketNet.

First up was Jim Boykin WeBuildPages. Jim decided not to speak from the podium and walk the aisle. Google Jagger update. Some did well, some not. Shortcuts are no good.

He presented a list of linking paranoia that pops up every time there’s a shift in rankings.

What does Google rank highly?

EDU, GOV
High TrustRank (lots of authority and .edu backlinks)
Huge and powerful websites sub pages (Amazon)
Old page that never changes, but gets steady links over time
New page on old stablished sites (good internal links)
Old sites that update and get a steady flow of backlinks that coincide with new content additions

Lee Odden

Matt Cutts Coffee Talk at Pubcon

Matt Cutts presented at Pubcon a very good Q/A. Barry Schwartz and Aaron Wall have very good posts on the session as I missed much of it. Instead, I had breakfast with Amanda Watlington, Eric Ward and Heather Lloyd Martin.

Here’s an interview Aaron did with Matt Cutts that’s a must read.

With about half of the audience being first time conference attendees, the questions were less about how to not get caught spamming, and more about Google in general. Cutts says Google going public has not affected people at the Googleplex, too much at least. Also that having Google stock explode in value has not changed him that much. Just that now he buys books whenever he wants.

Lee Odden

Pubcon X – RSS Feeds and Podcasting

In this session on day two of the Pubcon 10 conference, presenters provided very good insight into how podcasting and RSS are being used now and what’s in store for the future.

First up was Amanda Watlington from Searching for Profit.

Sound files (podcasting) is not such a new topic. What’s new are the tools for production and distribution. Podcasting is growing fast. Avg subscribers per podcast 65. It’s not realistic to expect a large audience right away, it must be built up.

According to TDG Research, there will be 56.8 million users of podcasts by 2010.

How cane search marketers make money from podcasting?

  • Content
  • Advertising
  • Publishing (RSS)
  • Marketing Podcasts to listeners
  • Tools such as directories to help listeners find podcasts
Lee Odden

Pubcon X Big Site – Big Brand – Big SEO

This session was moderated by Stephanie Leffler of Monster eCommerce and included: Marshall D. Simmonds, Jeremy Sanchez, Chris Zaharias, Bill Wise

First up Marshall Simmonds from NY Times (About.com) who talked (very fast) about the complexities of search engine optimization for large publishers.

His employer, the NY Times also hosts several other publications adding to the size and complexity of their SEO initiative.

With the NY Times, he wanted to make it focused, but the NY Times ego created unrealistic expectations. As with many prominent companies, they equated their reputation in the offline world with justification for ranking well online.

Issues contributing to the complexity of big site SEO included: large amount of content, writers not familiar with web writing. rigid CMS and others.

Lee Odden

Pubcon X Keynote: Robert X. Cringley

The first session at Pubcon 10 started out with a keynote presentation from Robert Cringley.

Robert Cringley has been on the internet since 1977. He was a war correspondent in ’77 in Beiruit and had enough and went back to CA and started working for Steve Jobs. Apple offered him stock but he regretably, took cash. Cringley taught at Stanford University. Came back to Apple for work on Apple Lisa user interface.

Claim to fame: He invented the trashcan icon, which he created as an experience he had when writing a book. He accidentally deleted 8000 lines of text – 96,000 words. So he was resolved to create the trashcan functionality and make delete a two step process. Shared other anecdotes regarding trashcan.

Lee Odden

WebmasterWorld Pubcon Day 1

Today starts Pubcon X. My hotel is right next to the Las Vegas Convention Center and there’s a huge WebmasterWorld.com banner hanging outside. A pretty good match to most things here in Vegas, BIG.

Sessions I’ll be attending today include:

Keynote : Robert X. Cringely

Big Site – Big Brand -Big SEO
Marshall D. Simmonds, Jeremy Sanchez, Chris Zaharias, Bill Wise

Competitive Intelligence
Jake Baillie, Anne Kennedy, Joseph Morin, Andy Beal

Yahoo YPN Sponsored Lunch : What is the Yahoo! Publisher Network
Will Johnson, David Zito, Donald Loeb, Arnie Gullov-Singh

Organic Search Forum
Bruce Clay, Aaron Wall, Todd Friesen, Todd Malicoat

Super Session : Blogging for Fun and Profit
Barry Schwartz, Jeremy Zawodny, Andy Beal, Mark Fletcher, Chris Pirillo

Lee Odden

Tools for search engine optimization

I was looking through my notes from the San Jose Search Engine Strategies conference and noticed I had not posted several of the sessions I had attended. This one is a new session on tools for search engine optimization. It will be repeated at the Chicago SES conference, so it must have gone over well. I know I thought so.

Many top search engine optimization firms and SEO savvy webmasters use tools to help them be more effective and efficient at SEO. There is no such thing as a one size fits all SEO tool that really works. But there are applications for specific tasks that can make certain aspects of SEO more effective and less time consuming.

The session was moderated by Chris Sherman of Search Engine Watch