Category Archives: Marketing and PR

Get Ready for Download Day 2008!

Firefox LogoMozilla wants to have their shining logo grace the legendary pages of The Guinness Books of World Records; and it shouldn’t be too hard either considering they seem to be pioneering their very own category: Most Software Downloaded in 24 Hours. Had I but known that you could enter your own category, I would have long ago taken first place in, Most Peanut M&M’s Consumed While Watching Reruns of Saved By The Bell. However I am not sure that a Guinness category like that is in the same kind of demand as an ‘Internet’-related category. Being as the Internet is still a fairly new concept in terms of seasoned organizations like Guinness (Est. 1955), the chapter on Internet world records is fairly bare and it is pretty cool indeed that Mozilla is taking a step to beef it up.

So what exactly is this fancy new software that Mozilla is asking everyone to pledge to download on Download Day 2008? Well, it is the brand new version of Firefox (titled Firefox 3) and it is apparently chock-full of web-browser-y goodness boasting over 14,000 changes and new features.

There is an excellent article on tgdaily.com entitled, Why Firefox 3 Matters and it outlines the first impressions and initial reviews of a few web savvy users. From the looks of this article, Firefox 3 is going to be a pretty smart download.

Firefox 3 is a massive upgrade over Firefox 2 with more than 14,000 changes over the 2.0 generation that was released in October of 2006. The great majority of those changes happened under the hood and aren’t immediately visible to, but there are enough user-centric improvements to make this new version a worthwhile update.

Click here for the full article.

SEOmoz Steals Show at SMXAdvanced 2008

SMX Advanced logoI recently returned from SMXAdvanced 2008 conference in Seattle, led by the maestro of search, Danny Sullivan. As before, SMX Advanced proved to be the premier (or at least on the top) events of the SEO conference circuit, with an incredible array of search engine experts including Kevin Johnson, Matt Cutts, Will Critchlow, Ken Jurina, Stephen Spencer, Alex Bennert, Vanessa Fox, Todd Friesen and many other well known SEO/SEM experts.

That said, it was once again Rand Fishkin, CEO of SEOmoz, with whiteboard in hand who once again stole the show, attracting crowds of conference attendees looking to get advanced preview of what will be many Seomoz Whiteboard Fridays shows. Besides getting some first hand glimpses of what will be some very exciting shows, not to mention behind the scene search tips, attendees got advance showing of what is likely to be a hot topic in the search engine industry, Brett Cutoras’s “SHUT THE F#@K UP” whiteboard interview along with subsequent blog post on Shoemoney.com that will have attendees talking for the next week at the very least. With SuperbHosting.net co-sponsoring a Dedicated Server giveaway, without a doubt, the SEOmoz booth was the hottest ticket at the show. I can hardly wait until next year to do it all again.

SuperbHosting.net and SEOmoz at SMX Advanced

Buying your Google ranking

Google has always touted their superior search algorithm as a big part of being the dominant search engine; the algorithm, likely the biggest secret in the company, is the reason the site is able to provide the most relevant results to your queries. However, there’s been a screenshot released by a French blog that suggests Google rankings may be affected by what you pay. Google acknowledges the screenshot as legitimate, but maintains that there is no questionable rankings in their search results.

“Our organic search results have always been completely independent from our paid advertisements. We consider the objectivity of our search results to be paramount to our success and would never compromise that in any way,” said software engineer Matt Cutts, in a statement sent via the company’s public relations department.

via this Computer world article

While Google has been untarnished and somewhat of a golden child, it is still a corporation, and lately, the search giant seems to have lost some of their lustre. This definitely won’t help, but perhaps all will be forgotten with the release of their new open platform next week.

SEOMOZ SEO Boot Camp – Great SEO Tips Had By All!

Rand Fishkin - Wizard of Moz, SeomozYesterday, some of the Marketing team, including yours truly, attended the very first Seomoz SEO Training Seminar, led by none other than Rand Fishkin, the Wizard of Moz. For those of you who may not know who Seomoz is (shame on you because it means you have not been reading our other posts on search engine optimization). Seomoz is a hub for search marketers worldwide, providing education, tools, and resources with over 30,000 registered users. We highly recommend that if any of you are interested in learning about search engine and social marketing, you should subscribe to seomoz.org

Ok back to my account of our “grueling day”. Our day began with having to awake before sunrise. Before you think that the gang over at Seomoz are taskmasters, I must tell you that we needed to race down from Vancouver to Seattle to get to the seminar by 9am which was held at the University of Washington. We almost made it except my erstwhile navigator blew it and we missed the exit (actually it would have been nice if someone had told us the Express lane did not allow to exit to U of W – Gillian!). Still we did arrive in time. There was even some grub and coffee still left so we quickly grabbed our morning sustenance and joined our fellow boot campers.

Our Drill Sergeant (Master Rand) was just getting warmed up and greeted us brusquely with a “no going to sleep Curtis” before launching into full steam. He was off, working his SEO magic on his loyal disciples who had come before him to partake in his wisdom of search engine marketing starting with using the latest in technology to record his every word – actually 3 pieces of paper stolen from Jim Hedger’s notebook (another luddite like me), I garnered every tidbit I could.

It goes like this; relevance, QDF, juicylinkfinder, internal links, 66 chars, no follows, juice, seed set, H1/images, size matter (not sure what Rand was referring to here), iframes, kw (not ky), title research, linkerati, influencers, and party at 5:30pm (here I paid attention). There; you now know everything I learned. I am kidding! It was packed with juice flowing everywhere; however, I only had 3 small pieces of paper so that was all I had room for (that plus I will get the entire seminar later for review to share with you in follow posts).

After an excellent lunch of gourmet pizza and salads, we then embarked into the land of social marketing, which is why many had come. While some of my collegues and I are well-versed in SEO, Seomoz’s wealth of social marketing knowledge is what drew us to make this pillgrimage to the land of Moz. We were not disappointed. While there was more information that anyone but a veteran could possibly take in; there were tidbits of knowledge that I know everyone took away. For me this is why I go to these events. This is why I travel to distance lands for SMX, SES, PubCon, and other such events; the tidbits. Not because I do not know this stuff but to be reminded of what matters – “size” or to quote on of Rand’s lead off slides, “It is Better to Be Big & Popular than Small & Niche”.SEO - Big & Popular is Best Yes we all know that a Search Engine Friendly site design is necessary to drive traffic but we all need a reminder occasionally to fix those little things we have been meaning to everyday but never seem to find the time.

I could go on for pages there was so much information, however, I will write a follow-up on the social marketing side of the seminar. I would like to summarize by including the following:

Seo Tips for Google – Top 10 Countdown (from 37 top SEO masters) with my notes to self in brackets:

10. Topical Relationship of Linking Page (right on!)
9. Global Link Popularity of Linking Site (this is a tough one)
8. Keyword Use in Body Text (this was is relatively easy just do it)
7. Link Popularity of Site in Topical Community (need to concentrate on this more)
6. Topical Relevance of Inbound Links (this one often gets ignored)
5. Link Popularity within the Site’s Internal Link Structure (note to self)
4. Age of Site (thankfully this one is naturally done for us)
3. Global Link Popularity of Site (need to work on this more)
2. Anchor Text of Inbound Link (my favorite)
1. Keyword Use in Title Text (while this may be a duh! it gets ignored still)

For much more on all of the above, I must reiterate, go to Seomoz.org signup for the Premium membership (it is ridiculously inexpensive for what you will learn).

Rand & Gillian Fishkin - SeomozOk now to the best part, the Seomoz after party held at Jillian’s billards (because of their big screens as the SeaHawks were playing – they kicked butt). As usuals a great time had by all. An excellent follow-up to the awesome part at the Garage after SMX. Unfortunately, as we needed to drive back to Vancouver that night, we could not partake til the end but we did manage to get one pic of Rand, Gillian (Ma Moz) and myself. Ok it was late and we had all been up all day but there you have it – our day at the Seomoz SEO Boot Camp.

Search Engine Rankings

One of the most common questions people ask regarding their website is how to get it ranked well, usually not on search engines, but more specifically, on Google. While rankings on the major search engines are not universal, there is quite a bit of parity among them, and a site that we sponsor, SEOMoz, is one of the best in the business at providing tips and tricks for ranking well on search engines. In an article written earlier this week, Rand Fishkin outlines (in his opinion) the 4 most important variables in the search engine ranking equation:

  1. #1 – Keyword Usage & Content Relevance
  2. #2 – Raw Link Juice
  3. #3 – Anchor Text Weight
  4. #4 – Domain Authority

Click here for the full article.

It is important to note that search engine rankings are not a perfect science, and there are so many different things that can affect your site’s ranking(s); please review the SEOMoz Blog Disclaimer. While it is important to rank well on search engines, it is possible to have a successful Internet business and not rank well on search engines through word-of-mouth by existing customers and/or a well executed, targeted marketing plan.

Online Marketing and Advertising

Online AdvertisingThe world of online marketing and advertising is a new and evolving place that few people – if any – truly understand. Whether you are trying to optimize your site’s content for search engines (SEO), trying to increase your site’s exposure through less conventional below the line or viral marketing campaigns, or simply trying to get Google, Yahoo!, and MSN/Live to index your site, unless you are one of the more savvy individuals on the web, it’s nice to have help from the professionals.

One of our partners, SEOMoz, is a great resource for this type of thing, but don’t take our word for it. SEOMoz has been recognized by Advertising Age as one of the top media and marketing blogs. AdAge’s Power 150 is a ranking of the top English-language media and marketing blogs in the world. The sites listed in the Power 150 represent an almost unending wealth of knowledge for marketing and advertising on the Internet, and although it doesn’t guarantee your website success, it definitely helps you take a step in the right direction.

For the traditional or mainstream marketer, I do post this with a word of caution. Rather, I post it with Steve Rubel‘s words:

It’s very difficult for anyone in marketing to keep up with all the twists [in] the digital space because technology changes so darn fast. It’s like chasing a cheetah. Most marketers – be they clients or agency side – are heads-down running their business. Therefore, companies are creating a new role. They’re hiring people who act as translators between the ultra geeks and the marketers…

Remember, to achieve that next-level of success, it may require employing a professional who eats, sleeps, and breaths online marketing and advertising, espcially if your small/medium enterprise is going head to head with a well established (perhaps even multi-national) corporation.