Unfortunately life has been far too busy to spend time dutifully blogging about it. Here’s a few headlines and summaries. Continue reading
Basically, here’ s the situation.
A client’s company has always been to an extent, “faceless.” No personal accounts of real people have ever been involved with company sites or company social media profiles. It’s always been the company’s policy to not have any faces and names associated. I’m not completely sure why other than the ease of dealing with shifting staff and turnover. Continue reading
Someone recently asked me,
How do you believe the Google +1 button and the Facebook “Like” button will impact the marketing of a business. In what way can a business influence how many “+1′s” or “Like’s” it receives? Or can it?
I’m flattered someone would come to me with this question. Continue reading
This morning, I was thinking about how SEO has affected my views of church. Don’t laugh at me.
In a certain way, the church is the king of content marketing.
The meat of its products and services (pun) has not changed much in decades, or even centuries. But that hasn’t stopped or even slowed down the machine of christian media from rewriting, re-spinning, redesigning, retargeting, researching, and redeveloping the same content for a constantly shifting set of different audiences.
How drastically different is the best way to live the christian life for the different walks of life?
Seriously. We boil it down to its simplest truth (which we love to do) and it’s what?
“Love God. Love People.”
And that’s fantastic, really. I get it. Simple, Succinct, Strong. It is the “Consistently Develop Amazing Content” of Christianity. Of course that’s the key to all SEO, but if you leave it there, what’s left to discuss? What content about SEO is left to even develop?
How odd would church services be this weekend if every pastor in America walked to the pulpit (or stool and high table— for the truly relevant), and uttered a four word sermon. “Love God, Love People.”
As a personal aside, I’d say that it would reduce the amount of “thin content” being produced at churches every week that a Parochial Panda would probably pummel. Joel Osteen, I’m looking at you.
So, what are churches to do? Well, I’m not sure. A lot of SEO advice simply eliminates a lot of what you’re doing. Remove duplicate content. That’s one of the ten commandments of SEO. Here’s how you might recognize it better:
“Avoid vain repetitions.” – Jesus
Why take the same great content, say a fantastic, biblical teaching on good morality, and muddy it up with countless, slightly different versions of itself? A great piece of content will work for almost any age. It’s not necessary to repackage (and in many cases re-sell) the same exact material. But the church loves to make a version ever so slightly altered to “best connect” with a 5/8/10/12/14/16/18/21 yr. old. Oh, and a slightly different version for 20 something, 30 something, 40 something, and 50 plus, then another set for each of those with children. I know a content farm when I see one.
On to User Experience. Don’t bait and switch. No gateway pages, that’s a SERP penalty waiting to happen. If I invite my friend to a singles event, he is going to be expecting to be able to chat and hopefully meet a nice girl. He is not expecting to be faced with the question of where he will spend eternity.
It’s getting late, so I’ll end with this kicker.
The future of search is social.
The future of church is social.
Relationships drive us. To the best content on the web, and to the best our faith has to offer.
We share the videos, blogs, images we like to those around us, so they can enjoy them. Do we not owe the believers around us the same with how to walk out this faith we claim to follow?
I absolutely refuse to use a keyword that doesn’t work. So, “small groups” (which DOES work) is what I guess I’m putting a plug in for.
And I don’t mean just one at your church. I mean the concept. Faith in community. The greatest story ever told, has yet to be told best through advertising or even keyword targeting or anything other then it going viral. People encouraging other people in their faith.
And that’s how christianity should be doing SEO.
Next week, Altar Call Analytics: Redefining “Conversions” and Reducing “CPA”
I was a bit skeptical of the webinar because I didn’t want to just hear a rehashing of things I already know. But I definitely was hoping for some advice on recovering from Panda’s Pummeling Punch®. Although Panda wasn’t really addressed, Justin did a fantastic job of relaying things to build your link profile that I haven’t already heard before.
The most basic example is the creative contact mining. In short, find really great blogs that don’t have clear contact information, then hunt down that contact info to contact him about getting a link on that blog.
Before you start throwing stones at me for being a proponent of cold-call-link-begging, this is only the second half of the process. The process, or, my paraphrasing or what Justin said is something like this:
- Find an awesome page.
- See what the page is highlighting or linking to.
- Make one of those.
- Contact them about a link to it.
He even talked about a new paradigm on directory submissions, or one I hadn’t heard before, anyway. Good stuff.
One great tip… Use StumbleUpon. If you get enough thumbs ups, StumbleUpon will post your page to it’s Facebook and Twitter, spreading your content even more, and building more links to it.
Another great takeaway:
You will have failed content.
Deal with it. Back to the drawing board.
Justin also relayed a great way to recover Failed Infographics as well as this quick and easy blogging contest idea:
- Give them email address
- They email their post in.
- You request a link back to the contest page.
- They are usually cool with that.
Links and related content in one awesome swoop. Huzzah!
There was also a whole segment on using Excel to do what amounts to SEO magic for linkbuilding. Much of it was over my head but I plan on trying to wrap my brain around it later. Here’s the link he shared for getting started with it:
Unfortunately, I missed most of the Q&A session so I plan on hitting it back up when it posts as a video right here:
By far though, my favorite line was this quoted qoute:
“You can’t outsource giving a shit.”
– Tom Critchlow
This is where your hustle and JFDI attitude can make you a BAMF at linkbuilding.
Who else watched the #Mozinar and what did you think?
If social media bores you, don’t read this. You’ve been warned.
Hubspot did a little webinar on 5 tools to Market with Facebook marketing today.
First off, they used Vcall to webcast, which is a strike right off. I’d never heard of them until today. First, it doesn’t work in Chrome. No good. Second, it crashed Firefox 4 twice, and the audio stuttered throughout. Finally, it slowed all my web traffic down. You may be thinking it’s my system, but it’s not. I watch other Hubspot and SEOmoz webinars regularly with no trouble at all. So, yeah, that’s a bit of a thumbs down for Vcall.
On to the knowledge. First, it’s important to note how important Facebook Fans are. They’re more desirable than Facebook users as a whole. They click links 5 times more often and have over twice as many Facebook friends as users do, on average.
Fans are hardcore Facebook users. Fans are looking for deals, news & community. Engaging your Facebook fans is about building loyalty, growth, and retention among existing customers. They’re looking for exclusive offers and benefits from being a fan, so that’s what you need to be offering.
And before you talk about ROI and not wasting social efforts on existing fans, you should know that 36% of fans buy more from your brand after becoming a fan.
And in case you hadn’t noticed, you need Like buttons on your site. No, really. They work. They build brand engagement on your site, and they share your product on facebook to more people which both builds brand awareness AND drives more traffic back to your site. And what’s the secret that makes that makes Likes far more desirable than Shares?
Likes allow you to target ads to specific fans, which is the most successful form of Facebook ad targeting. You can offer newer, similar, and discounted versions of a liked product to all of its fans and their friends too. Huzzah. Didn’t know that before today. Good job, Hubspot.
So, what are people liking more and more? Sadly, it’s the same thing that makes terrible reality TV popular: Sex, Arguments, Food. Seriously, Hubspot compared Facebook to Jersey Shore, which if I were Facebook, I’d be very offended. Other attendees did point out that the base level topics are probably not wise for strictly B2B Facebook Marketing, which is often seeking a bit higher thought level. God, I hate Jersey Shore.
You’re not still using “Updates” to inform your fans, are you? Well, then stop. They hardly ever get read. Use wall posts instead. Also, I’ll let you watch the webinar for the details, but Facebook has an algorithm for “EdgeRank,” which is what drives and creates the “Top News” Tab. You definitely need to have at LEAST 1% engagement on a wall post for it to start earning any EdgeRank.
It’s also important to note some simple facts about Facebook’s relationship to/with Google. First, Facebook is growing faster than Google is. Second, they are different marketing tools that work together and require you to develop different approaches to each. Facebook is demand generation. Your marketing is lifestyle-based and brand-driven. Google is demand fulfillment. This is where you make more direct sales pitches.
And one of my favorite takeaways from the webinar was this little ditty:
Most FB ads burn out after 3 days!
Seriously, the CTR drops a LOT after 3-4 days. So, you may want to spend that budget on a 5-day campaign over a 2-week one. Just a thought.
They usually post the video from the webinar about a day or so after, so you probably wanna check here for it: