Optimization is Key

Building a relationship between search engines and SEO is essential if you want anyone to find your site.

In this article, Pauline Cabrera does an excellent job of providing a “to do” list for improving your website’s performance and beating the competition online. Don’t be fooled by the title – it’s more about websites in general than blogs in particular. From simple suggestions for optimizing your content to building links with the “right” sites to increase rankings. Much of what is shared in this article is the exact same advice TECH B2B gives our clients every day.

Tech B2B SEO Webinar

Watch & Learn: TECH B2B SEO Webcast

This archived webcast looks at the latest strategies for building and creating business processes to support SEO optimized content and website growth, along with technical coding factors that are important for organic SEO and site usability.

Learn more about natural language algorithms and what they mean for content development; the changing requirements of content length per page; use of multimedia, how to use blogs to naturally grow your SEO content and improve search rankings. Technical discussions include the proper use of page alignment, meta descriptions, keyword density, mobile-ready site design, social media, and much more.

Rise Above the Clutter with Smart Link Building

Type “link building” into Google, and the search engine finds more than 87 million sites. It seems that everyone has an opinion on the topic, and rightly so, considering the value of SEO. So how do you break through all this clutter to make sure you’re doing right by your client and getting them page views? I’ve gathered some of the best tips out there from the likes of Vertical Measures and SEO Book, among others, who live and breathe link building.

Promote websites through directories. Article and web directory submissions can build backlinks while increasing exposure. And even though directories may not always provide direct traffic, their value lies in how search engines evaluate the links.

Exchange links with similar websites, but make sure you’re doing so with business partners who will send traffic your way, not just for the sake of simply getting your name onto another (perhaps irrelevant) site. What’s more, avoid link trading hubs like the plague.

Find out what your competitors are doing and if they outrank your site. Analyze backlinks through free sources such as SEO Book backlink analyzer, Yahoo site explorer, and Open Site explorer.

Write original articles and syndicate them to places like ezine or Digg with links directly back to your client’s site. Plus, it’s one more way to build brand awareness.

Participate in forums that provide signature links. Your cachet will go up if you leave relevant, helpful comments.

Create goodies like contests and quizzes. For our clients, we have posted trivia questions with the winning reader getting an iPod, as well as create a cash incentive to sign up for their newsletter.


Social Media Marketing Is NOT About Posting Releases to Groups

To be fair, when I see companies posting press releases to groups on LinkedIn, Facebook, Association boards, etc., its usually from a sales person.

You can understand how this happens. Social media is labor intensive, even if you have a good dashboard to manage all your channels and the expertise to use it wisely. But even then, unlike traditional PR operations, social media marketing (SMM) takes some time (and content creation) every day.

So, Execs look around and see that salespeople have time on their hands. They send an email out with a bunch of links and tell them they’ll be reviewed based on their participation in these groups. The sales person, who might be the best closer on the planet, knows diddly about PR and marketing. (And — forgive me — but sales aren’t the most proactive employees when it comes to learning new skills; Learning about SMM ain’t no fun unless it comes with a commission check.) And so the sales person takes the easiest route, pulls the latest press release from the company’s website, posts the title and links it back to the press release.

Grreeaaatttt. Now you look stupid instead of smart, arrogant instead of helpful. Instead of building credibility and good will, you destroyed it by showing me how little you care about my time.

Social media is effective because it takes the wonkiness — the BS — of a PR professional out of the loop. In many ways, it is marketing distilled to its most altruistic essence. SMM is all about giving  (notice the use of the word “giving,” not posting or providing). It’s about giving content — honest opinions, how to solutions, career advice, etc. — that people NEED to know. Good PR and marketing are also about helping the company’s customer do their job better, smarter, faster. In fairness to my brethren in the salt mines of business communication, many times us PR wonks are hobbled by a poorly designed product or service, and ineffectual business plans based on the “build it and they will come” mentality of commerce.

So, before you post that next press release to a group, think about what value it gives the reader. If it appears that your serving yourself more than the group, go have a drink, or fax an order form to a friend. Do anything, but don’t waste your customers time, or mine.

Next time, we’ll talk about what DOES make for a good SMM post. Ciao Bella, and have a great Easter!