Archives for October 2006

Incompetence by Design

Watch out, cat post coming!

Recently a credit card of mine was identified by the issuing bank as possibly having been included in a set of stolen data or online tampering. A new card was issued. Then I went about updating services paid with this card.

One of these services was our phone company and DSL provider, Frontier Communications. After not being able to login to the online bill pay I called and was informed the only way to change the card on file was to login via online bill pay. My description of not being able to login or successfully retrieve login information was falling on deaf ears, so I restate this information. I am informed of Frontier’s excellent security measures and the rep reiterates that the only way to change the card on file is through logging in online, knowing full well that I cannot do that.

Firefox 2 Brings Nicer Feed Integration

With the launch of Firefox 2 yesterday, one of the nice improvements came with how the browser interacts with feeds. Instead of the default source code view that Firefox 1 showed, Firefox 2 how gives users a nicer layout and the ability to add the feed to their favorite feed reader.

Firefox's Feed Display

No longer is a raw feed seen as ‘scary’ by the average user and, with feed reader integration, it might help more people get into reading feeds without really knowing it. I think Firefox 2 will help people figure out feeds & feed readers on their own rather than try and understand how they work first.

Apple’s Safari has been doing this for over a year now and I think that IE7 also handles feeds better. This is just one step in helping the general public understand feeds & feed readers.

Today’s Search Marketing Blogs

Newly added search marketing blogs I’ve added recently include the list below. Most of these are not new blogs, I’ve just not been a subscriber before.

SearchRank Blog – David Wallace
Joe Morin – Travels
IR Thoughts – Dr. Garcia – Mi Islita
Paul J. Bruemmer on Search
eTrafficjams Blog – Search engine optimization and marketing advice
techipedia – Tech opinion and news, with a sprinkle of SEO and social marketing

I’ve also created a SEO Blogs Search Engine using the Google Coop tool that includes all the blogs I monitor in my RSS reader/aggregator:

Making the Growth 50

I am very happy to say 3 of our “Marketing for Results” clients made the Business Journal’s list of the 50 fastest-growing private companies in the Twin Cities this year. These are clients that outsource all or a very large part of their marketing and public relations to our agency, Misukanis & Odden. Congratulations goes out to: Writing Assistance, Magnum Technologies and DDL.

I don’t mention my other company all that much on this blog, but maybe I should. Our M&O group provides strategic marketing planning, media and public relations, direct mail, email, advertising, lead management and interfaces seamlessly with TopRank for integrated campaigns that also involve search marketing, social media, blogs and online PR. M&O works primarily with small/medium businesses whereas TopRank clients range from startups to Fortune 20 companies.

Blog Marketing & Optimization

Welcome to The goal of this site is to give new and experienced bloggers some tips and tools that they can use on their blog to get more out of it. Some blog marketing tips are to help with search engine optimization and others with usability. Not only should a blog be search engine friendly, but it should also be user friendly.

A lot of the blog posts I make are tailored around WordPress as that is the blogging software that I use most often. Not all information is tailored specifically to WordPress though. and no matter what platform you are using, you will find relevant blogging information and tips here.

Keyword Glossaries and Conversions

As I was discussing the challenges and opportunities with a new client SEO project recently with one of our staff, I realized how much times have changed in regard to how we generate and apply keyword research.

In the late nineties and ’01 it was pretty much a process of mapping keywords to web pages, citing popularity and competitiveness. We used the KEI information provided by the WordTracker keyword research tool to uncover opportunities with ideal keyword popularity to competitiveness ratios. Things like keyword density, prominence, position, etc were mulled over for each search engine in excessive detail.

Search Marketing Links 102406

Today is the last day to nominate sites/services and blogs to the ClickZ Marketing Excellence Awards.¬† Don’t be shy and feel free to nominate Online Marketing Blog in the “Business/Marketing Blog” cagegory.

Using web analytics to quantify SEO work. Free online class today from ClickTracks’ CEO, John Marshall

G-man interviews Shoemoney at SEOMoz Blog.

Next gen of Googspy: SpyFu – Want to know which keywords your competitors using in their online advertising campaigns? will offer nearly 20x more raw data than previously available on Googspy, with a ton of new features including Adword price and Domain spending estimates.

Google customizable search for your site. CNET and SEO Names

In a rare moment of vanity-search weakness (yeah right!), I Googled my name (Lee Odden) and was surprised to see an AdWords ad from I am not sure why they would do that as there are so many other people in search marketing whose names are searched on more frequently, are well known, more prominent in the industry, etc.

Out of curiosity I started plugging names into Google (50+) to see which ones would pull up more ads from and the only other names pulling up ads were Danny Sullivan and John Battelle.

This is very strange indeed as I don’t belong in the same room as those two guys. The even stranger thing was that the landing page is pure crap. There’s nothing on it. Maybe it’s’s call for search marketing help?

Why should I use

“Why should I use” is a question I got the other day. It seems that provides no search engine love as it blocks the bookmarks with nofollow tags, yet it is very valuable.

What is good for is exposure. Lots of people use to not only store their own bookmarks but find new and interesting websites. I know that sites like LifeHacker sometimes posts on what is popular in too. This then turns in to a very valuable link back to your site.

What you are really doing is trying to create buzz and visibility for an article or a site that you think is interesting. It’s not about spamming link building for search engines.

Search Marketing Links 102306

Jim Boykin is taking a break from blogging and getting down to business, a very good idea worth exploring but sad because Jim puts out some excellent information.

Matt Cutts interview with eMarketing Talkshow

Jobs in Search turns 2 years old

New SEO candidate articles at Marketing Pilgrim

Putting Blogs to Work for Wall Street – CNET article on using blog and social media tracking services to give traders competitive intelligence on investor sentiment

Upcoming Speaking Events

Last week was quite a whirlwind with 3 presentations at DMA06 in San Francisco and then immediatley to Boston for 2 presentations to speak at a private conference being held by a client. We are doing a LOT more of that kind of speaking/consulting. Next up:

Nov 2nd: Visi Data Center 2.0, St. Paul
“The Truth about Search Engine Optimization” – Visi, the largest ISP in Minnesota, is holding an event to launch their new data center with St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman attending. During this event there will be presentations of interest to business and web site owners including my presentation on SEO.

Nov 14-17: WebmasterWorld Pubcon, Las Vegas

Search Marketing Links 102206

RSS to Email service FeedBlitz has launched version 2.0 of the service. Lots of upgrades. via Blogger Design.

Google launches a new multivariate testing tool, Google Website Optimizer and is looking for beta testers.

Yahoo launches the new version of their sponsored search program, Panama.

Here’s a new e-book on social media (pdf) from spannerworks. This is a great companion book to the PR 2.0 Essentials (pdf) document from SHIFT.

Brian Solis publishes the next installment in his series about blogger relations: “Reaching The Blogosphere Part 4 – Writing and Distributing the News”.

Rohit’s “Dark Side of Social Media and How to Avoid It” offers sage advice on how NOT to market with social media.