Archives for August 2008

Getting the Most Out of Internet Marketing Conferences

Josh Bernoff & Charleni Li @ Web 2.0 Expo

With Search Engine Strategies San Jose just around the corner, I thought it timely and appropriate to share insights on how you can get the most out of marketing conferences.

TopRank is very active attending, speaking and blogging a variety of internet marketing events, conferences and workshops. These aren’t the only reasons to attend a marketing conference though and the next 9 posts will offer some excellent insights from TopRank as well as a incredible mix of industry thought leaders that may just compound the value of your staff already attending plus motivate you to send more.

Recession or not, look no further than the headlines in any business publication and you’ll see increasing numbers of articles offering advice on how companies can best deal with tighter marketing budgets.

Upcoming TopRank Conference Schedule

I promised myself I’d slow down on conference speaking last year and while I’ve turned down more offers this year than ever before, (and been turned down myself the one time I formally pitched) some really great opportunities have popped up.

Here are the upcoming conferences I’ll be speaking at for pretty much the rest of this year not including private company engagements:

Aug 20, 2008 – Search Engine Strategies, San Jose
Presenting: “SEO Through Blogs and Feeds”
Presenting: “News Search SEO”
Media Sponsor
TopRank is sending 4 bloggers to cover the event (Thomas, Jessica, Dana and Ashley)

Sep 18, 2008 – OMMA Global, NYC
Panel: “Digital Asset Optimization”

Sep 20, 2008 – Blog World Expo, Las Vegas
Moderating a Panel: “SEO and New Media
Media Sponsor

SXSW Panel Picker: Vote for Better SEO

SXSW 2009

The initial submissions of session suggestions for the Interactive portion of SXSW that made the first cut have been published. Now it’s up to the voting public to decide which sessions make it next. I’ve heard a bit of feedback from last year’s attendees on the quality of content in the search engine optimization sessions, so it will be nice to see what makes it this year. Tony Adam from Yahoo submitted a proposal, “SEO for Startups” and now it’s up for votes.

The panel looks pretty good with: Todd Friesen a.k.a. Oilman VP at Visible Technologies; Rebecca Kelley, Internet Marketing Consultant from SEOmoz; Carolyn Shelby SEO Consultant and Host of SEO101; Tony Adam, a SEO Manager for Yahoo! and myself.

Optimizing the Right Content for the Right Audience

optimization

Last week I posted about situations where search engine optimization isn’t for sales and it sparked some interesting discussions. Most SEO efforts are directed towards lead generation and sales, but prospects and customers are not the only audiences for web content.

Fundamentally, SEO is about making the search engines’ job of crawling, indexing and ranking content easier, more useful to searchers. Companies publish many types of content to many different audiences. Most SEO efforts are oblivious to anything but leads and sales because marketing is the cost center paying for the SEO consulting.

Recently I’ve been educating public relations and corporate communications professionals at conferences like PRSA Digital Impact and Media Relations Summit on how SEO can be used specifically for news content. The intended audience are journalists and bloggers not consumers looking to buy products.

Link Building vs Content Promotion for Links

When marketing web sites on the internet 10 years ago, people “surfed” the web, clicking on links between sites they already knew about, links from directories and review sites. Search engines like AltaVista, Lycos, Hotbot, Excite, etc were around as well. Remember those? 🙂

People like Eric Ward pioneerd the practice of promoting web sites editorially resulting in links from these sorts of resources. Links had to come from relevant sources otherwise the traffic was irrelevant.

Google came on the scene with PageRank and boosted the value of bot detected links. Search engine quality improved substantially but opportunistic webmasters and eventually SEOs, identified and took advantage of as many methods of link acquisition as possible. Many of those links being topically relevant and many completely out of context. Think “link farm”.

Tweetpoll Results on Social Media Monitoring and Measurement

Social media monitoring and social media measurement are two very different things, but I think many of the searchers and social media taggers using those phrases don’t always make the distinction. For some quick insight from a qualified audience, I turned to Twitter and within an hour had about 40 replies.

It started off with this Tweet: Twitpoll: What’s a better term: “social media monitoring” or “social media measurement”?

Many of the responses were a specific selection of “measurement” or “monitoring” but most pointed out that social media measurement and monitoring are different things. Monitoring is what you do to find information which you can then measure.

It was a pretty neat application of using Twitter for a quick poll with near immediate responses from professionals that might not respond to traditional polling methods. Below are the actual replies:

WordPress White Screen of Death

I didn’t know WordPress could cause such a headache, but it did today.  I got the white screen of death and was left with lots of admin side issues.

What happens is you can’t login, or, if you were previously logged in, you can’t mange plugins. All you can do is get a blank white screen.  Even the WYSIWYG editor would not load.

I think what it had to do with automatically updating pugins in WordPress 2.6  I don’t know why, but it made WordPress very unhappy.

Lucky for me, I had all the plugins backed up and was able to delete all my plugin files and re-upload the old ones.  Yes they are all begging to be upgraded again, but the blog is working and that’s much more important.