A lot of work can go into producing and promoting a popular blog. While we’ve made some progress in terms of raising the visibility of TopRank and have made a tremendous number of connections, I think we’re really only “half way there” as far as where we could be. Using blogs as a marketing and PR tool is a process of planning, execution, measurement and refinement like any other tactic. We’ll continue that trend with new features and design in 2008.
In the past when we’ve posted the most popular blog posts for the year, it was based purely on the number of visits. This time, we’re taking into account a mix of metrics including: visits, inbound links, comments and social bookmarks from services like Del.icio.us and StumbleUpon.
Overall, about 47% of the traffic to Online Marketing Blog comes from search engines, 36% from referring web sites and blogs and a little over 17% via direct navigation. Older posts have more time to attract links and rank well, but as a blog gets more popular, it’s distribution for each post increases.
All that said, the most popular posts were for the most part, from the second half of 2007. Interestingly, one post from 2005 continues to rank in the top 20 content pages, “Lowdown on Press Release Optimization“. Factoring in visits, links, comments and bookmarks, here’s the list of the top ten posts for 2007:
- Google GrandCentral – Invite thanks to Adam Lasnik of Google via Facebook
- Yahoo Mash – Invite thanks to Michael Brito of Yahoo
- Ten Tips for Lead Generation Landing Pages – Guest post from Jon Miller of Marketo
- Winner Best Keyword Research Tool – Result of a OMB Reader Poll
- Viral Marketing – I Believe in Harvey Dent – Post by TopRank Account Manager Mike Yanke
- Guide to Marketing with Twitter – Content largely from Twitter community members sharing tips
- Search Marketing Blogs by RSS Subscribers – Post inspired by another blog
- 5 Tips for Content Distribution – Overview of a PPT presentation
- What Can You Do With MyBlogLog – Content largely from MyBlogLog community members sharing tips
- Search Engine Optimization Basics – Straight forward tips post
- Best SEO Podcasts – OMB Reader Poll
It’s pretty clear that the effect of networking online has been instrumental for generating and promoting content. One interesting thing I noticed is that the posts at the lower end of the top ten list in terms of number of visits (lower) typically had a higher number of bookmarks. With the exception of the top 2 posts offering beta invites, comment counts were fairly specific across the top ten.
The pages above were not the only popular destinations though. The 5 most popular (non-blog post) resources are also some of the top content overall. Here are the top 5:
- RSS and Blog Directories List
- RSS Button Maker
- Social Bookmarking Tool
- BIGLIST Search Marketing Blogs
- Online Marketing Blog Resources
Since so much of our traffic comes from search engines, I thought readers might be interested in some of the top referring search terms. Here are the top 5 and their rankings on Google:
online marketing – #2
social bookmarking – #4
marketing blog – #1
rss button – #1
blog directories – #3
In a few days, Online Marketing Blog will be 4 years old. It started out as a test, which we are prone to do on regular basis with many types of online communications, and has turned into the most productive PR and marketing component we’ve ever deployed. Not only has Online Marketing Blog been a proving ground for TopRank’s own blog marketing strategies, but also a testbed for tactics we employ with client blogging projects.
Thank you to all of our new readers and especially those who have stuck with us.