I’mma keep this to the point…
Keynote – Bruce Daisley of Twitter: Running In Real Time: Bringing Campaigns to Life by Marketing in the Moment
- Superbowl 2013 – 25 million tweets yet Oreo managed to be timely, current and humorous and stand out with “you can still dunk in the dark”.
- 80% of Twitter usage is on mobile – 70% of which at home
- 25% audience purchased via twitter,
- 50% use twitter to give them latest news, personalised news
- 15.2 million tweets on the #grammys hashtag
- •#pharrellsHat was a talking point
- Mobile click stream analysis – 94% of twitter users shop on mobiles,
- 56% of twitter users are influenced in what they purchase by what they see on twitter
- •37% visit twitter before and or after shopping on their mobile
- 1 in 3 say that twitter has a direct influence on their purchase decision
Session 1 – Building B2B: Judith Lewis and Krista LaRiviere
First Speaker – Judith of Decabit Consulting
- High sharers convince low sharers to buy your product
- 43% of people in the UK are prompted to purchase after online interation
- If using multiple accounts, keep a uniform look to retain company image and to be recognisable as a single entity
- Free your teams with a centrally governed set of rules, empower them with structure
Krista, CEO of gShift labs
- 58 million tweets per day
- 18 minutes is how long a tweet lasts (average lifecycle)
- Content industry is $44BN dollar yet people are producing a lot of crap on this basis
- Smarter content is based on data
Session 1 – Big Data Uncovered: Dixon Jones and James Murray
First speaker is Dixon Jones of Majestic SEO
- According to Twitter on an average day approx. 500,000,000 tweets per day.
- Compare that to Majestic who crawl 2,000,000,000 pages a day, but see 7,700,000,000 a day
- Storage, CPU and bandwidth (transporting the data) are the scaling problems
- “Only collect what you need and crunch it quickly.”
- Average page size 320 KB = 600 terabytes of data
- Approximates to 600,000 hours of video
- Hadoop – becoming opensource option of choice. Used with R and MongoDB – good tools of choice for data crunching in cloud.
James Murray – Experian
- If you were to put each individual data point Experian have, into an Excel you would be able to cover Paris
- 2 exabytes of data created online every day
- Customer behaviour is changing due to connected life, user sophistication and mobile tech
- 11% of consumers are using a tablet as their main device…. Er hello retail websites???
- 8,300 social networks and forums
- Your customer only sees the brand. They are channel agnostic. Splitting teams by expertise creates inherent disconnect
Session 2 – Content Strategy
Session 3 – Influence the Influencers – Lee Odden
- 64% increase in content marketing budgets in the uk
- Consumer publishing extends over 240 million blogs
- 34% increase each year in companies blogging (though eveyrone is doing the same stuff, to get “more hooks in the water”)
- 94% UK marketing function use content marketing
- 39% highly effective use – 72% (B2B) 45% (B2C) are investing more
- Influence is not having 50-1000 twitter friends
There are four types of content classifications according to Odden:
- Evergreen (timeless, always relevant)
- Curated (take whats current and input it in a newsletter > monthly eshot)
- Repurposed: making ebooks of above
- Co created = participation marketing, find common goals, go to your own community
Session 4 – Unlocking the Secrets of Mobile Video, Cheri Percy and Jon Mowat
First speaker is Cheri Percy of Distilled
- “in design, there are no more ‘hero sizes” – Mashable CTO. E.g. design is platform agnostic
- By 2017 85% of the world wil have 4G devices
- 51% of 2013 web traffic came from a mobile device (Cisco)
- Do not neglect YouTube analytics
- No. shares x total engaged views/1000 gives a manageable engagement score
- Vine – explore tab for loads of trending topics
- Share your first post on Vine with hashtag #firstpost (community convention)
Jon Mowat of Hurricane Media
- Stories are told in narrative beats
- Start with “the deal” and reach a “conclusion”
- 62% of 18-32 YO prefer to check their phone in any “downtime” (as opposed to sit and think)
- 37% say they check their phone if there’s a lull in conversation
- Campaign need emotional and logical beats (but be careful when using together)
- YouTube is a destination not a stopover. Only 1% click-thru to site from YT!
- Don’t be afraid of the Pro channel and keep your brand films up to date inc. deleting old films
Last week myself and my UK-based fellow SEO Chicks spoke at the Digital Marketing Show at Londons’ Excel. Our panel discussion was on Technical SEO, with each of us leading a few slides on one main topic; detailing the best-practise concerns and of course, the most common mistakes.
Here are the slides from the day and our twitter handles precede each section so feel free to tweet us if you have any technical questions.
“Never read the bottom half of the internet, that’s where the bad things live.”
It’s mantra repeated by many.
I’m referring of course to the comments, which as ‘bottom half’ indicates are situated a long old scroll down the page at the bottom of a post or article.
Of late it seems I can barely go a day without bad mouthing Google+
Not only does G+ fail to blow my skirt up, furthermore I rather enjoy poking fun at it and on occasion* being out and out nasty about it.*These ‘occasions’ are actually pretty frequent.
Want to know what my problem is?
Hold on to your
skirts hats 🙂
Google are making you their bitch.
Google are using a pretty common marketing tactic – engaging with influencers in order to gain traction.
If there’s one thing I love about this industry it’s that we are not backwards in coming forwards. Whilst there are a number of fantastic conferences run by larger organisations, dedicated event and publisher groups there is no shortage of people that are creating, organising and growing independent or not-for-profit conferences within this sector. I wanted to find out about the challenges these (often volunteer) conference organisers face and if the benefits to them or their business match the time and effort put in. I asked the following group of indy conference and event organisers for their thoughts on the same topics:
Dan Harrison, who runs SotonDigital
Sam Noble, who runs Digital Females
Gus Ferguson who runs OMN
Jo Turnbull who runs Search London
Kelvin Newman who runs BrightonSEO
The Paid or Free Dilemma
Jo: I have not considered charging people for Search London, nor would I want to as it would go against the principles of Search London which is a place where people can share information freely. It is important to keep Search London open for all, which means not charging a fee. There are many conferences with great speakers but due to the expense, many people miss out and cannot attend. I am lucky to have some of these fantastic speakers talk at Search London.
Gus: I’m determined that the OMN events, such as they are now, will remain free, or virtually free. The main issue with this is that it’s virtually impossible to judge how many people are going to turn up as there’s no commitment further than a click on an RSVP button from members. This is a challenge as there’s a legal capacity in most venues, so if we set the max limit too high, and everyone turns up who RSVPs ‘yes’, then we could be in trouble. As the group grows bigger we’ll potentially implement a token charge that will go straight behind the bar. Maybe. Who knows? I don’t have a tip about this as I’ve not got it right yet.
Dan: We had over 100 attendees booked at the May SotonDigital event. 50% didn’t turn up. I think that free conferences are not valued compared to paid ones. As an organiser, this is very depressing, it’s like saying “you know all that hard work you did? yeah, I don’t really care”. About 10% (of non-attendees) apologise with some decent reasons for not attending. Makes me wonder about the other 90%!
Kelvin: We’ve always been free for the main event and I can’t envision that changing anytime soon. As soon as you charge even a single penny you change the relationship between attendee and organiser. It’s tricky to make the sums add up but not impossible, before I spend a single penny I need to ask myself what does this really add to the conference? is this something the attendees or sponsors will value? And it’s about spending the money in the right places as well.
Getting Bums on Seats (Or Fannys, for our American Readers)
Sam: Having a free event you will always struggle to get a 100% turnout on the day, so I always overbook the event and work to a 40% drop out rate. I don’t know what the ratio is like with other free or paid events but this seems to be about right for Digital Females.
Kelvin: We’ve fortunately never had a problems getting people along to BrightonSEO, with a sell out in less than an hour for every conference. But it never ceases to amaze me how many marketing events are poorly marketed. We understood very early on that scarcity makes people value the tickets more, so we push that, each conference will have it’s own angle but it does need a marketing strategy, not just a book it and hope approach.
Jo: Once you have the fantastic speakers and you have announced the event (sending out emails or publishing on your blog), getting bums on seats is not that hard. It is very important to have a venue in a central location making it easy for people to attend, otherwise you will not attract many people. I always Tweet about the meetups I host via Linked in and I also advertise it on my own seo website. When I attend other meetups in the run up to mine and where relevant, I mention to those I speak with during the night, that I am running an event and ask if they would like to come along.
Gus: OMN was originally run by someone else, and called the Online Marketing Networking Group on Meetup, had about 100 members at its height. They ran events on Saturday’s to which only 3 or 4 members would turn up. So there’s tip number one, don’t run professional events at times that most people consider leisure time.
My main business, Quad, has offices on HMS President, which as well as being a pretty unique place to be spending my working life, is also one of the best events venues in London, and I was already considering setting up an event to take advantage of the space. So, when the disheartened organiser of the Online Marketing Networking Group stepped down, I took over the group and OMN was born. Tip number two, get a good venue.
Sam: We have only run four meet ups so far so finding sponsorship hasn’t been too difficult. The first event was sponsored by Koozai to help get it off the ground and subsequent meet ups have been sponsored by Linkdex, Manual Link Building and Distiled. The last meet up was sponsored by Distilled and I was able to secure this sponsorship because we had Hannah Smith talking and we also helped push SearchLove and DistilledU in exchange.
Dan: This is tricky, as it’s tough to ensure sponsors get value. Invariably, it’s about visibility, but I’ve found that sponsors are only interested in sponsoring once the event is popular.
Kelvin: Being a free event we’ve never had the luxury of ticket revenue so we’ve had to build great relationships with sponsors, that means understanding what they want and helping them achieve it, as wanky as that sounds. In our case for the conference it’s the sponsors who are really are customers not the attendees so we try our best to put as many of the right people as we can in contact with them. And try and charge a fair amount for it.
Jo: It can be difficult to confirm sponsorship. It is important to have the speakers confirmed, a date in mind and a venue with the costs before you ask for sponsorship. I am hosting my next meetup on Tuesday 18th of September and I pleased to say that MoneySupermarket are sponsoring the event. I did book the venue and arranged the speakers before I had spoken to them about sponsoring. However, for my last Search London event for the year which takes place week commencing October 22nd, and where Craig Bradford from Distilled will be speaking, I have yet to confirm a sponsor. If you are interested, please get in touch with me via Twitter.
Attracting Quality Speakers
Kelvin: We’ve never had a general call for speakers, for two reasons. One it makes you lazy as an organiser, the temptations there just to choose from those people who present themselves to you. Some of our most successful ever speakers have been the people who wouldn’t have put themselves forward for an SEO conference in a million years they only got involved because we asked them two. Secondly you’ve got to realise a lot of your friends and social media buddies are going to want to talk at your event, there’s only limited slots and often they won’t be the right person for the gig even if they’re a great. Anything I can do to avoid that situation is good in my book.
Dan: I’ve found that inviting as many people as possible to speak allows you to choose the best range of topics that suit the audience. Give yourself a choice from a range of talks. Most potential speakers are aware of how they can boost their profile by speaking at a well-attended event.
Gus: We set an event for a couple of months in the future and reach out to industry connections, such as SEO chick extraordinaire Nichola Stott, (Author Note: I swear I did not pay him to say this) who we knew had a lot to offer the online marketing community and membership grew steadily. Tip number three, it’s all about the topics and the content. Get great speakers, talking about topics that are popular and you’ll get an audience. OMN is now a 2000+ strong community of London’s best and brightest online marketers, supported by a blog with a growing following and we’ve big plans for the future.
What Attracts People to Your Meet/Conference?
Jo: The topics and the speakers are the most important factors in attracting people to Search London.
Sam: Networking with like-minded individuals in an environment that people feel comfortable in, then after that the speakers.
Kelvin: I think our price point as always helped us, we instantly wipe out the biggest objection people would have to coming to an event. Originally I think the party was one of the main attractions but I think that’s changing over time, now we’re lucky to have such a huge audience its becoming one of the places where there’s the greatest likelihood of you bumping into someone within the industry you know or who you would like to meet.
In which ways do you benefit? (If you do benefit?)
Gus: OMN is purposely kept separate from my main business, Quad, as I’m very conscious that I don’t want it to be seen as a sales event, although on the occasions that we sponsor the bar I’ll put a sponsor message in a group email, and this normally generates a few enquiries into our content marketing services. It’s about building genuine relationships
Sam: I didn’t create Digital Females to benefit me individually; it was set up to help increase the number of females attending some of the larger conferences in the UK. Many of the larger conferences are very much male dominated and I know there are a lot of females in the industry that don’t go attend them at the moment and I want to see this change over the next two years.
Jo: People have often asked this question. I enjoy arranging the meetups and meeting the speakers and the attendees. Everyone talks and works online, but it is nice to meet in person and also share knowledge with others. The search industry constantly has new updates and Search London is one of the ways to get real “how to” knowledge to stay ahead of the news and implement best practice for your websites and clients.
Kelvin: We benefit financially, BrightonSEO is slowly but surely becoming a ‘proper business’ in it’s own right. It’s no big company yet but if it brings in more than you spend it’s much easier to continue investing emotionally into the project. It’s been great for the profile of the city and me individually, I’m much better known as a consequence but I could have achieved a similar effect with much less effort if that had been my aim.
What I enjoy the most is seeing the friendships, business partnerships and successful careers that have been built to some extent as a consequence of BrightonSEO, someone came up to at the last event and told me how a freelance contract he’d won at the event had the potential to change his business. That’s hugely gratifying, seeing speakers who spoke first t BrightonSEO presenting all over the world is hugely gratifying, seeing things like Dave Trott’s book sell out on Amazon after speaking at BrightonSEO that’s gratifying too!
Dan: I generally get more visibility in the area which in turn benefits my own business profile, but I’ve found it short-lived. I’d need to keep running events to maintain it. However, there’s been no new business as a direct result.
Why Should Anyone Consider Organising an Independent Conference or Meetup in their Area?
Kelvin: What are you going to do differently, just being in a different location isn’t really enough, also don’t under-estimate how hard it can be to get sponsors or ticket sales, I’ve known of at least one event that was launched under blaze of publicity and if my sums are correct will have lost a bucket load of money. That doesn’t mean it won’t go on to be a huge success but if the people behind it thought they were going to make a huge ammount of money after event one they were mistaken. I think most people are better of starting small, Think of the smallest the event could possibly bean and make yours smaller. I think there’s a brighter future for someone who sells out a fifty person event than someone who sells a hundred tickets to an event that they thought would attract 250.
Dan: It’s great for the community, but be aware, it will eat up your time, far more than you’d expect… although it depends how much effort you put into it.
Gus: Running OMN takes a LOT of time. Managing the members, the event, promotion, speakers, sponsors, door people, cloakrooms, etc. could easily be a full-time job for someone, and in the very near future it probably will be. I don’t make a profit out of the events, and for me it’s a labour of love. It’s a chance to give something back to the community that I love being part of, that provides my income and feeds my passion for digital marketing. Tip number four, be prepared to put your reputation on the line and give up evenings and weekends. If anyone reading this is interested in starting a Meetup/conference of their own, sign up to OMN, come down to the next event and grab me at the bar for a chat, or get me on Twitter @GusQuad. As I say it’s a passion of mine so I’m more than happy to discuss your plans with you and help if I can.
Sam: It is a great way to get people together but I would recommend looking around first to make sure there isn’t something already running. If there are already conferences or meetups in your local area, you need to find a specific niche that you can start to run with. If there isn’t anything in your area, go for it! It gives you a real sense of achievement when attendees come up to you after the event and say how much they learnt from enjoyed the event J
I‘d really like to thank Sam, Kelvin, Dan, Gus and Jo for taking the time to respond to my questions. One of the clearest points that each of these guys have stressed is that even though there are indirect or sometimes direct financial reward as a result of running these events, on the whole there is a huge amount of consuming time, effort and energy required to make these events a successful learning experience (and usually a whole bunch of fun.)
If you have ever attended, spoken at or simply joined one of these events for the fun networking, I hope you will join me in thanking these guys for their very hard work.
Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Google, Yahoo and more all are, or have, social networking components. Many brands, shops and individuals are jumping on the social media bandwagon and trying to market as best as they can through the next biggest thing on many on these platforms. What often isn’t being taken into account is the harm social media could be doing to your brand.
Social media is fun, engaging and deceptively easy to get in to but difficult to market over effectively. Due to the ease and simplicity of the platform, it can seem at times as though everyone who can log on has become a social media marketing expert. The ease of entry belies the difficulty in engaging appropriately which has been exemplified in the past with Habitat UK, Vodafone UK and countless other social media gaffes that do sometimes irreparable brand damage.
Social media brand damage can go on to impact your brand online as CNN and Eurostar both experienced. When searching on “Welsh couple Mumbai” and related terms, the false story that CNN put a couple’s life at risk dominated the search results. Even though this was false, social media enabled the fake story to be picked up and repeated as commentary and news in countless other blogs. Search results for both brands became affected.
Social media problems resulting in unfavourable search results then becomes a reputation management issue, sometimes even requiring professional SEO help as the search results become polluted with negative messages about your brand. In this way, and others, social media can harm your SEO efforts, making it even harder to present a clean brand image in the SERPs (search engine result pages).
Social media can also help your brand. Engaging over social media, including commenting on blogs, tweeting, blogging and other methods of social media engagement can not only improve SEO but also help build positive brand engagement, creating passionate advocates who can be activated when something does go wrong. Having a bloggers launch of a product as well as a media one can result in more column inches, more buzz and higher rankings. This also helps with cleaning up bad search results as positive buzz pushes out negative buzz.
Social media itself also helps SEO through link building and citations. Each mention without a link as well as each link all goes into the big algorithm on calculation and results in higher rankings. While a link helps more, a mention still helps with relevancy, trust and authority. Links from social media do help and count so positive buzz about your brand will help your SEO, rather than harming it.
Ensuring your social media efforts are targeted and focused is important as well. Creating relevancy or relationships with unrelated products or words will not help your SEO efforts. If you sell biscuits and you target your content at people interested in caravans, while people who caravan may eat biscuits, you will not rank higher for biscuits no matter how many caravan-related links you get.
Social media marketing requires a plan before engaging just as SEO does. Keyword research is the most important thing any site can have done for it in order to better focus efforts and targeting. This keyword list should then be used then engaging through social media. This type of focused targeting means instead of harming your SEO, social media can help your SEO.
Don’t sweat the small stuff with SEO though. Focus on the low hanging fruit and after you have done your keyword research, change title tags to be more targeted, add to your on-page content and ensure links in to the site have keywords where possible. Citations are growing in importance so don’t worry if you don’t get a link – a mention will help.
Social mdia can be as much boon as bane but if you plan properly it can be a huge help.
The SEO Chicks have big plans of expanding and actually regularly blogging in 2012 (yay) and have already welcommed Annabel Hodges to our team. After racking our brains for…well 2 seconds really (we knew who we wanted to approach really)..we decided to approach the querky, clever and generally awesome Hannah Smith to join our blogging team, and she said YES…
I would officially like to welcome Hannah to the SEO Chicks team. We are so excited to have you on board!
Follow Hannah Bo Banna on twitter. That’s an order.
ps: I challenge anyone to find a different picture of Hannah anywhere on the internet…..I tried, there is NO other…Are you camera shy Hannah? Just you wait, embaressing photos like this one is bound to be taken when we next see you (dear god that’s an awful picture….why in the toilet…and Julie wasn’t even there, she’s the toilet chick..ehm, now I should stop…that can be misunderstood)
Many people whom I know and respect have engaged in self-imposed Twitter bans recently. I have found myself fuming over tweets and fussed about it to people who don’t care, for ages and ages it seems. However, I totally rely on Twitter to keep me informed about absolutely everything that’s going on in our industry. If someone writes a blog post, I find out through Twitter. If Google decides to do something insane, I hear it through Twitter. I don’t rely on RSS feeds or bookmarks or word of mouth anymore; it’s just me and Twitter. However, Twitter is quickly killing my goodwill and sanity. The self-promotional tweets about how much money you just made or how many job offers you’ve just turned down turn my stomach. The bickering and bitching suck me in until I’ve read 10 blog responses to 1 inflammatory blog post, and hey, it’s time to go pick up the kids already. I no longer have time for such a mess.
What can you do though, if Twitter is your go-to source for information? Once you’ve been clued in for long enough, being out of the loop seems terrifying. What will you miss? Will so and so be fighting, again, and you won’t get to see the mean tweets back and forth? Will you not immediately know when some blog has published a post so that you can rush to comment on it and again and tell us how great you are? Will you stumble because you want to do something yet you’re unable to due to having become reliant upon follower feedback for every step you take? Does my new avatar make me look fat? Can you believe what this mean person said to me in my blog comments? Continue reading “Hate Twitter? Here’s How To Keep Up!”
I’m so excited to welcome the wonderful Annabel Hodges aka Search Panda to the SEO-Chicks blogging crew. We’ve been eyeing her up for ages thinking she is probably crazy enough to become one of the SEO Chicks, and turns out she is. Yay!
We asked Annabel a few questions before “hiring” her into the crew of course, some very qualifying, difficult and important questions:
1. How did you get into SEO?
I was a translator back in the day and getting very very bored of it. I started trying to learn a little more about search and analytics in my spare time as my housemate got me interested in it and I got hooked. I then got a job with a small design/development agency who had just won some multinational clients and had a choice: train linguists up in search or train search marketers to speak other languages. Simple decision!
2. What makes your SEO heart tick?
Two things mainly:
1. Data. And by that I mean those times when you really manage to get some juicy findings that suddenly change the way you look at what you’ve been doing.
2. Direct input/output of work. Over the years I’ve realised it’s pretty rare to be in a job where you have that satisfaction. On your own sites, if not your clients. You always get to tweak and learn and change and see, monitoring the direct impact of what you do and inputting back into that cycle. So many people work in a job where their day-to-day efforts get lost in a bigger machine.
Elisa Gabbert is the content manager at WordStream, where she runs the WordStream Internet Marketing Blog and helps market the company’s AdWords software, PPC management services and keyword research tools. She also writes poetry and perfume criticism. She currently lives in Denver. You can follow her on Twitter at @egabbert (but expect tasteless jokes and bad puns).
1. Can you give us a summary of your SEO experience thus far? What is your current niche?
I got into the SEO industry about five years ago, sort of by accident – I was working as an editorial assistant on a website at a big media company. Their model was to run a bunch of highly targeted websites (each aimed at a slice of the technology market, mostly B2B but some B2C as well – stuff like Oracle, Linux, server storage, etc.) and sell advertising against those sites. When I started, no one even knew what SEO was, but it slowly became a bigger and bigger part of our strategy company-wide. Most people hated it – the company employed a lot of journalists who were coming from a print background – but a few people saw how important it was and some (crazy nerds) even found it interesting (oh, hi). So I moved into an “SEO specialist” role, making recommendations for a group of websites.
Now I work as a copywriter for a venture-backed startup that offers search marketing software and services, including a PPC management platform and various SEO tools (free and paid). We like to say this is the Olympics of search, because we’re competing to rank on search marketing terms with other companies that, like us, really know search marketing. So it’s very challenging, and VERY META.
2. How do you feel about the recent Google privacy changes that will now prevent us from seeing logged-in Google keyword data in Google Analytics? It’s apparently not the case for PPC. Fair or not?
I actually just blogged about this news. I tend to side with the “privacy schmivacy” folks – clearly other motives were driving this decision. I think it sucks because that’s such useful data. The worry is that it will eventually affect all organic referrals, as opposed to just a fraction as it does now. Then keyword research/optimization for SEO officially becomes total guesswork.
3. Any tips on how to use PPC data for organic SEO and link building?
Especially now that Google is taking away some of your organic search query data, it’s super important to keep an eye on your search query report if you do PPC. Assuming you’re using broad match and modified broad match (and you should be, in concert with negative keywords), you’ll be able to discover all kinds of new keywords that you can then incorporate into your content strategy. If you manage pretty large, complicated accounts, you might want to take a look at Chad Summerhill’s tips for search query mining – he includes a link to an Excel download that can help you sort through the data. You can download the full series in PDF as part of our negative keyword e-book.
4. Besides Wordstream tools, what else do you use?
I usually use our own tool for keyword research, but I sometimes consult the Google keyword tool for comparison. I also use Google Analytics. Otherwise it’s mostly me and a Word doc. And Twitter! I’m on Twitter all day. As a writer, I can focus on content strategy and leave most of the hardcore geek stuff to our SEO guy. I avoid Excel whenever possible.
5. What are the best resources available for someone with a small budget, new to PPC?
How small is small? If we’re talking really tiny, Google offers “AdWords Express” which requires very little effort on the advertiser’s part, but you give up a lot of control, so that’s iffy unless you’re talking a budget of like $100 a month and no experience with PPC. Beyond that, I’d recommend reading a lot of blogs to keep up with PPC best practices and the constant changes and additions to the AdWords interface. Tom Demers is my point man for keeping up with AdWords. And here’s a big list of awesome PPC blogs from BoostCTR. (Speaking of which, BoostCTR is an affordable way to get help with your ad copy.) Attend webinars, download white papers – take advantage of all the free resources that PPC companies offer in order to get your email address. The amount you can afford to spend on getting help with PPC will depend on your monthly budget. If you’re spending $1,000 a month or more, you can probably afford to invest in some tools.
6. What’s a typical day like for you?
The first thing I do every morning – after checking my email and putting out any fires – is publish a new blog post on the WordStream blog. We try to do at least one new post every week day. The blog is my baby. Then I push it out through Twitter and poke around on TweetDeck to see what people are talking about. The rest of my day is some combination of meetings (talking strategy with the rest of the marketing team, planning for new features or product launches, etc.) and writing and/or editing (articles for our own blog, guest posts and contributed articles, email marketing, white papers, and so on and so on), with a little social media and link promotion sprinkled in for good measure.
7. Name your dream client and tell us why.
Anthropologie, because maybe we could work out some kind of discount? (Editor’s note: you and me both, sister.)
8. What’s the best piece of SEO advice you’ve ever received? Ever given?
I think the best advice I got was from Larry Kim, who told me to copy Wikipedia. Who else, aside from Google itself, enjoys first-page rankings for such a wide array of keywords? So we try to emulate them on a smaller scale – create encyclopedic content on a topic (for us, that’s search marketing); organize it taxonomically; interlink heavily; use the keyword in the URL, title, first sentence, subheads, image file names and alt text; build anchor text links; etc….
As for given? My favorite piece of advice is: When you don’t know what to blog about, consult your analytics. Inevitably, you’ll find a traffic-driving search query that you don’t have a dedicated post for yet. So write it, duh!
9. Write an SEO haiku. Just kidding!! Who’d win in a fight between Martin Amis and Ian McEwan?
I don’t know, they’re both pretty namby-pamby, wouldn’t you say? I think the ghost of Kingsley Amis, annoyed by their bickering, would hangover-vomit on them from above. (Editor’s note: I think Amis is less so than McEwan but McEwan is creepier, therefore he’d win. However that 9/11 book by Martin proved that he’s a bit scary, so…ok Amis would win.)
10. What’s the biggest bullshit SEO advice going around today? I’m quite annoyed by all of the “must do” items being pushed about. We didn’t have freaking wordpress tags in place and we still ranked, damn you all!!
The perpetual thorn in my side is the obsession with getting into Google News. Sure, it can send lots of traffic, but I think evergreen content is more useful for our business model.
11. If you were not working in SEO, what would you be doing, besides staying home watching Oprah reruns and eating moonpies? Or is that just me?
I’m a writer, so I’d spend my days writing about one of my other interests – mostly frivolous things like perfume and outfits, but I’m also into lofty pretentious stuff like poetry and women’s rights and “culture.” So if it weren’t for this SEO gig I’d probably be our generation’s Joan Didion.
12. Who are the most fun SEOs you’ve met and why? For the sake of not having to arsekiss this cannot include any of your bosses.
Can it include you or does that count as arsekissing? (Editor’s note: I’d have accepted that HAD YOU MENTIONED ME.) My former bosses, Tom Demers and Ken Lyons (who now run Measured SEM), are a laugh a minute. I’ve met a lot of great people through WordStream. If Twitter counts as a “meetingplace,” I’m a big fan of Dr. Pete.
13. What’s the ickiest search you’ve ever stumbled across? When I was researching the types of chickens I wanted to get (shut up) I accidentally searched for “black sex links” instead of “black sex link chickens.” Yeah. Unfun. Luckily it was a web search, not an image search.
I’m totally impressed that you have chickens. Please invite me over for breakfast. (I mean to eat eggs, not the chickens.) I don’t think I’ve ever “accidentally” searched for kinky sex tricks, but one of the common keyword referrals for my blog is “dave matthews band tattoos.” How icky is that? Also “emo gay sex blogspot,” but that’s just cute.
Now this is Julie talking…I realize there are a lot of links to Wordstream here so before any of you start thinking they’re giving me free stuff or in any way influencing me, let me say that I WISH THEY DID. They don’t. I just think Elisa is three hoots and I like to see literate folk in our industry. Thanks for the interview Ms. Gabbert!!