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Monday, June 25, 2007

Social Media Marketing – What is it & who needs it

By now there are a few sites that you should have heard of, Craigslist, Digg, YouTube and MySpace – these are just a few of the social media sites and there are quite a few more. Social media sites are sites that people can go to congregate to share pictures, ideas, videos and more. I know it sounds like just about every other site out there but there is a difference and that difference is in the level of interaction. You see social marketing sites encourage involvement and promote a sense of community

Social media can be used for more things than sharing your holiday pictures or goofy videos. Social media sites can be used to find new employees or perhaps a new love interest or even find an old one. Social media can be used to bring in a whole new level of collaboration when joining in with a similarly minded community.

Perhaps one of the best things that social media sites can be used for is reputation management. Let’s say that some person has printed some negative comments about your company and those pages rank highly in the search engines, this is clearly not a good thing for your business. Creating social media accounts can certainly help in some cases.

You see due to the high level of traffic and linking to these social media sites, some of these sites can rank quite highly within the search engines. Given the power of these networks you should be able to create your company pages that will soon out rank those negative comment pages, forcing them to fall in the SERPS and hopefully, right off of page 1. Of course you would need to set up several profiles to push those negative comments off of page 1.

Here are a few of the more popular ones.

Judy's Book
Yahoo Answers

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Monday, June 11, 2007

Google Web Alerts – Is anybody maintaining this product?

I don’t know how many of you out there use Google Alerts or how many of you actually try to get your stuff published using this system. If you are like me you may use this system to stay up to date on the topics that matter most to you.

As a content producer I have tried several times to get my reporters stories included within the Google Alert system only to be rejected time and again. I know that for their system it is all about how the information is delivered and the number of writers can also make a difference. Knowing this hasn’t made it any easier to get included.

With that said I can’t help but wonder if it is so hard to get included into the Google Alert system, why do I keep getting alerts that redirect to pages that have nothing to do with the original alerted story? How about a little quality control on the sites that are currently in the system and kick the offenders out to make room for new, quality feeds?

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Friday, June 08, 2007

Link Requests – A waste of time or just a waste of my time?

Own a website? Expect link trading email offers – it is a given. A lot of time and energy is devoted to this simple task; I just wish that the efforts put forward for these types of email requests demonstrated some rationale thought and offered a value added solution. Unfortunately this is rarely the case as more often than not; the requests come in as a selfish deal skewed towards the requester.

I am the project manager for one of our sites This is a content rich site that deals with poker and is rapidly gaining an authoritative nature due to all the content we provide to major sites, publications and organizations.

Take this request I received this morning as it is pretty common. (Example edited to remove references to where the email came from and to what site they were trying to promote.)

Currently we are carrying out a 3 – Way link exchange program.
This gives us
both a better footage in Google ranking. I’ll link to you from one of my site,
and then you link from your site to my another site.

If you are
interested in exchanging links with us, please upload the following information
on your website

It goes on to say…

Please notify me when you upload our link and mail me all your link

Hoping for a successful deal

Now as far as requests go it isn’t too bad with the following exceptions.

  • They expect me to place a link to their site and notify them on the location prior to informing me of the URL of where they will place my link.

I took a look at the site they want me to link to and it is just another one of those poker portal sites that offers nothing to the viewers except for a way for the viewers to help make the site owner some money through affiliate links. What would be the value to our readers?

Good only knows what kind of lame ass link directory they would be placing my link on?

If you are going to spend time looking for quality sites to link with don’t you think it would be a wise idea to offer the other site a high quality link in exchange? Barring that, don’t you think you should at least disclose where you were planning to place the reciprocating link?

What we have to keep in mind here is that when linking to another site that link is considered to be a recommendation to your readers to visit that other site. As such don’t you think that you should make sure that the site you are linking to is of a value?

I know that the strategy here is to get me to put a link to their site and then hope that I forget about it so that you get a nice 1 way link. This may work for some sites because the site owners don’t know any better but I mean come on… if the site you are trying to secure a link from is miles better than yours and it offers something of real value, should you be trying these bullshit tactics?

Come on people; practice a little linking responsibility in an effort to make the Internet a more useful place for everybody. Don’t pollute the web with your pitiful attempts to make money by promoting your garbage sites with third rate linking schemes. If you want to use a 3 way link system, offer the other site in your triumvirate something of value and fully disclose everything up front.

I can’t really say that the request I got this morning was totally useless as it did offer me the opportunity to blog about something today.

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