Search Engine Marketing News - 2007-12-20

Hi Everyone,

Next week is Christmas (Yay!) so we will be taking some time off and won't publish another newsleter until January 9th, 2008. Christmas is the best time of year for me because we always have family staying with us for a week and we have a blast celebrating. Hopefully you'll have as much fun or at least get some rest so you'll be ready for 2008.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Robert Clough

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Search Engine Marketing Articles

Old Idea + Creative Thinking + New Media = Viral Marketing Potential Part 2
by Jennifer Laycock - If you read part one of this post, you've already caught a great example of a church getting a little creative with their welcome message and ending up with a great viral video. In part two, we're going to take a look at how a company in Fargo, South Dakota put a twist on the typical "donate a bunch of money at the end of the year" idea to score a viral hit of their own.

Old Idea + Creative Thinking + New Media = Viral Marketing Potential Part 1
by Jennifer Laycock - Earlier this week, Debra had a great post about creating viral videos as a way to drive links to your site. Now there's no doubting the power of video (just ask the founders of YouTube) for driving traffic and sparking interest, but I do still hear quite a bit of chatter about how hard it is to create a good viral video. Then I ran across a video this morning that reminded me you just need a sense of humor and a slightly varied take on something you're doing anyway.

Video: The Secret Sauce of Social Media
by Sage Lewis - Let's have a reality check about social media and your business. You can't just barge into these communities schlepping your wares and expect everyone to get excited and buy, buy, buy. You need to use the secret sauce if you are going to have success.

Video: Building Links by Making Videos
by Sage Lewis - While Hollywood writers strike you can jump into the void and create your own original content to build links and increase awareness of your company.

Video: Search Engine Guide - Thursday, December 20
by Sage Lewis - Google toolbar version 5 is out. Flickr offering stats to pro users. Only 47% of Internet users check their Google reputation.

When Social Networks Go Senile
by Jennifer Laycock - With social media sites coming online at a rate of eleventy billion a minute, it's only a matter of time before we start to see some...well, interesting communities popping up. So what would happen if you not only got a bunch of senior citizens together (and I don't mean the "just turned 60 club," I mean the 80+ club) and built a Facebook type social networking site? And what if those seniors had a great sense of humor?

Discount Subscription to Search Marketing Standard
by Jennifer Laycock - It's hard to believe it's been two years since Boris Mordkovich and his team launched the print Search Marketing Standard magazine to help educate folks about the search marketing industry. I remember back when I first posted about the magazine's launch. At the time, I was pretty skeptical. After all, the industry moves at a blogger's pace, not a publisher's pace. It just didn't seem like a print magazine had a chance. I'm happy to say I was wrong.

50 Tips for Christmas Website Optimization
by Manoj Jasra - If you're an online retailer and you're looking to maximize this year's Christmas season then I suggest you check out Jessica Hupp's post at because she has come up with over 50 ways that you can optimize your website for...

9 Paths of SEO Enlightenment, Part III
by Stoney deGeyter - While search engines are important, keep in mind that your visitors are even more important. When making edits to your site always consider the implications on both your human visitors and the search engines as well. Every change you make will have either a positive, negative or neutral effect on your human visitors and the search engine spider. You need to know ahead of time the effect any particular change will have and use that as a basis for determining if its worthwhile or not.

AdWords Local PlusBox A Great Addition
by Patrick Schaber - The announcement of the new Local PlusBox by Google Adwords which places geographical information in the top paid search location changes the PPC strategy for those using more local targeting. The new expandable feature allows advertisers to bid to the top spot in an effort to have the opportunity to display such valuable information as a map, address, driving instructions, and phone number, in addition to the location name that appears beneath the last line of ad.

Converting Visitors Through Errors and Form Fields
by Stoney deGeyter - Forms are one of your primary points of contacts with your visitors. While many visitors still use email or even the telephone to contact you or to place an order, the vast majority will contact you first via your web forms. Forms that are broken or improperly implemented cause frustration and can greatly reduce your conversion rate for leads and sales.

From Slash to Cash: An Interview with Domain Consultant Stephen Douglas
by Todd Mintz - My experience with SEO is that it´s very hard, and most people involved in learning it well or consulting for others are damn patient and more damned smart than I am. The difference in a domain that is parked for traffic revenue and one that is minimally built out for stickiness is the SEO strategy. I EXPECT anyone who is going to build their website and strengthen the power of their domain value to invest in SEO prep and maintenance (P&M) of their website.

Building Links By Making Videos
by Debra Mastaler - According to a recent survey, people are planning to turn to the Internet for content as a way to keep themselves entertained during the writers strike. If there was ever a time to create a library of videos and publicize the heck out of them as a way to attract more inbound links, it's now!

How Can Small Business Compete in a Highly Competitive Paid Search (PPC) Market?
by David Wallace - There are times where it can be difficult for small business to compete in the paid search environment. As the cost of targeting keywords on venues such as Google AdWords continues to increase, many small businesses are finding it difficult...

Speak Softly and Carry a Big Stick
by Diane Aull - What can you do if your website-kid is getting beat up in the search engines by the online equivalent of a playground bully?...

Here's Why I Won't Quit My Link Building Job
by Debra Mastaler - Are you thinking about outsourcing your link building work or do you prefer to keep everything in-house? There's been a lot of discussion on this issue lately, let's take a look at the pro's and con's of each.

You Can't Compete With the Big Guys? You Sure About That?
by Jennifer Laycock - I've spent the better part of my adult life (I know, I know, that still isn't that many years) working with small businesses to help them leverage the Internet in creative ways so they could compete with much larger competitors. One of the points I try to pound home again and again is you don't need more money, you just need to do it better. While it isn't an Internet marketing story per say, John Jantsch has an excellent post today that shares the story of a little company outlasting a global brand most small businesses would run in fear from.

Changing What You Want to Get Out of Social Media
by Jennifer Laycock - Earlier this week I summarized my Hide and Speak article series with a wrap-up post outlining four key lessons on social media marketing. The post tried to get companies to realize social media marketing was an ongoing process that requires time, committment and a passion for your product. What I should have included was the need to see social media marketing as a way to tear down the walls that separate your business from your customers. That wall called "marketing." Thankfully Mack Collier steps up to the plate today with an excellent post on this very topic.

8 Items Every Shopper Needs In Their Shopping Cart
by Stoney deGeyter - Customers who, by all means, appear to be ready to make a purchase are often found abandoning their shopping carts before they complete their online transaction. In many cases this is part of the normal online shopping experience as the shopping cart is just used as a place to collect items of interest but which the user has no real intent to purchase. But all too often it is a failure of the shopping cart page itself that leads visitors to abandon their items which they do, in fact, wish to have.

Is That Picture Worth a Thousand Views?
by Jennifer Laycock - Barry over at Search Engine Land reports Flickr has launched stats for Flickr Pro account holders. As a Flickr lover, I was pretty pumped to read this news. One of the most frustrating things about using Flickr for someone who lives and breathes marketing was the lack of access to traffic stats. I must not have been the only person who felt this way because Flickr has finally delivered a fairly nice statistics report to their users.

Linking Out: What's In It For Me?
by Jennifer Laycock - I've had a few conversations in the last few weeks from folks who want to build more incoming links but seem to be having trouble getting a positive response to link requests. While I'm a big fan of linking out and encourage site owners to link out generously to relevant resources, it's important to understand few sites will link simply because you ask them to. Wiep Knol calls this type of link building "push link marketing" and offers up a very simple piece of advice on how to turn those requests into links.


Search Engine Guide Blog Posts
Jennifer Laycock Stoney de Geyter Diane Aull Debra Mastaler Paul Jahn Manoj Jasra Liana Evans David Wallace Patrick Schaber Sage Lewis
Featuring: Jennifer Laycock, Stoney deGeyter, Diane Aull, Debra Mastaler, Paul Jahn, Manoj Jasra, Liana Evans, David Wallace, Patrick Schaber and Sage Lewis
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Video Casts

Sage Lewis

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Readers Respond...

In response to Here's Why I Won't Quit My Link Building Job

"...Link Building is hard, but then it is all the more rewarding when the one way link is approved or a piece of compelling content get picked up."

"As the Link Executive at Leapfrogg, I wouldn't have link building any other way. Sure it's tough, but it gets the creative juices flowing and allows for personal contact of a wide range of people from a wide range of sectors."

"If link building was just a case of writing a generic email, sending it out and getting a high rate of those links set up then both the power of those links (in terms of link building) would be diminished."

"Come up against a challenge I think anyone would look for a solution, and I really see the USER benefiting as website evolve from standard "business pages" to sites that offer something back to the user, either entertaining, useful or informative and in doing so, they can naturally attract organic links."

"Heres to 2008.... and another year of Link Building!"

"Merry Christmas Debra,"

"Best wishes,"

Simon Dance

In response to Video: Building Links by Making Videos

"Wow. That was more energizing than a cup of coffee!

"And you are absolutely right. YouTube videos are regularly posted all over the Internet in various blogs and video directories providing tremendous opportunity be be seen outside of YouTube and linked to. Embedding your web address in these videos can send large numbers of type in traffic of search traffic.

"Create enough videos, and when people search for your web site name, your other videos will start being displayed if you have the new Google Video Sitemap on your web site.

"So get with it!"

Terry Reeves
Local SEO Specialist

In response to How Can Small Business Compete in a Highly Competitive Paid Search (PPC) Market?

"You hit on exactly what everyone should be doing with their campaigns if they have any interest in increasing performance rather than just spending money.

"I'm willing to bet if you run that one key phrase assuming most of your money through some keyword tools, you'll find similar phrases that won't be as expensive, and will give you even more clicks for the same amount of money.

"Also, if the term has multiple words in the phrase, don't forget to bid on other word orders. For example, if your site is selling a "red dress", you should also bid on the term "dress red" in a phrase and exact match. This is very beneficial if any portion of your targeted audience speaks English as a second language, since most romance languages (including Spanish), say the adjective AFTER the subject instead of before.

"I'll be having this and similar topics on my new blog starting after the holidays at"

The SERPzone
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