Are you one of those who want to earn more by providing search engine optimization techniques (SEO) to companies? This may be the opportune for you to start your own business or sell your services as a freelancer or a contractor. Read on the following ideas that could help turn your venture into one of the best SEO marketing companies of your time.
Plan And Prepare
As an SEO expert service provider, identify first the services you will be offering your clients. After which, you can draft the long term and short term goals of your business. Accomplishing the first two steps make formulating a trading name a lot easier on your part. Remember, it should both be distinct and professional.
Identify immediately your targeted consumers as your business will rely heavily on dealings with them. Know their changing desires and needs so you could come up with suitable marketing techniques to make your services known.
Knowing your competitors and how different their services are from yours should also be considered. This creates a good opportunity for you to design a fresh product or offer a unique service that is unheard of your competitors.
From there, decide whether your business will be under your sole ownership or under a partnership. This will make dealing with business structure aspects such as taxes, hiring staff or opening a business bank account a lot speedier and wiser for you.
Have A Workstation
For search engine marketing specialists, location and accessibility matter a lot. Bear in mind that all your customers should be able access your office without much hassle. As early as possible, decide if you will be renting a commercial office space or simply create a home office.
With a definite office space at hand, consider your provision for the things you need to fill your place with like computer and furniture. Arrange your office in a way that you will have enough space for an extra staff if you’ll need one. Then, set your and your staff’s working hours. Be sure to keep it all the time no matter what.
Use The Appropriate Trade Tools
There may be a lot of tools you will need for this business but it is better to obtain just the essentials – hardware and software. Sticking with these two will save your time and money in the long run. A computer with large memory and hard drive capacity, reliable internet connection, phone line, printer and fax machine, all fall under hardware.
Conversely, the needed software includes programs for invoicing, timesheets, keyword discovery and document creation. Search the web for more ‘must-have tools’ for SEO marketing companies.
Promote Your Business
Business promotion entails online and offline efforts. It is best to be armed with techniques in both areas. Never forget to include website design and advertisements to your internet marketing.
Keeping in touch with your clients helps build your business’ reputation. So better provide a reliable means of communication with your clients all the time. Be a part of SEO organizations. Enlist your business in directories. This can get you a lot of contacts.
Keep Your Clients Happy
Customers are content and happy when they are served the right dish with hospitality on the side. Communicate with them regularly. Know their needs. Don’t forget to reward your best clients. It’ll make them feel valued.
SEO service providers – first timers and old-timers - are all prone to mistakes. You can always find other people from the industry who are willing to help and share their knowledge in SEO forums. More so, solutions to most SEO problems are found online. You just have to take time and Google them.
Expand Your Business
As you gain popularity, your projects will increase over time. Once you decide to compete to be one of the best SEO marketing companies, objectively assess whether your resources can handle an expansion as it deals with more customers and hire added staff.
Discover more of our SEO services and improve your online marketing with the help of the best SEO company.
Google Local SEO has really changed the daily dealings of local or small business owners nowadays. For one, it has made local business promotion easier, speedier and more cost-effective.
Surveys show that in 2006 and the preceding years, yellow pages advertisements are the best means for local businesses to get the message across to potential local consumers. If you have been operating your local business for 5 years now, you could definitely attest to this. You could have paid for one of those ads too.
But as 2007 entered, the yellow pages magic has been progressively replaced with search engine wonders of Bing, Google, Yahoo and the like. Local businesses established that year and no longer sought the service of yellow pages advertisements. In connection with this, surveys conveyed that less than one-third of consumers will use a phone book in 2011.
Local Search Takes Over Traditional Print Ads
The importance of search engine optimization technique has dawned upon the local businesses ever since search engines replaced phone books and yellow pages directories. Local business owners continue with the desire to achieve it.
In fact only a few local business websites land on the first page of search engine results (SER) and viewers generally click on them more than those found on the next pages. This is why acquiring the top SER slots for your business search term is essential.
For instance, you want your small pottery business to be recognized by prospect customers in your local area. This would mean extra work on optimizing your business for local searches. In the SEO industry, this is labeled Local SEO and this proves to be the fastest growing aspect of SEO service.
Getting Started With Google Local SEO
In starting off your local SEO efforts, creating a profile for your small business on Google Places is a must. Google Places is the most popular website catering to the needs of local businesses. This profile should contain your business address, phone number, hours of operation, products that you offer, services you provide, types of payment accepted and others. These pieces of information will also appear in the search results.
Other online registration for your business can be found in Best of the Web, Bing, MerchantCircle, Yahoo and Yelp besides the famed Google Places. The internet holds a long list of online companies providing the same service. Choose your pick.
Advantages Of Business Profiles To Search Results
A sure way to increase the visibility of your local business in the local search results is claiming a business profile. When a local consumer conducts a search using the search engines, business links related to the search will show on the screen as the searcher hits the enter key.
Algorithms of search engines decide which search related business links will appear on SER’s first pages. Although algorithm details are a secret, they definitely regard business mentions in online directories like Google local business directory. Such mentions impact a site’s rankings.
Google and other search engines value mentions when ranking websites because they are perfect indicators of a business’ trust and longevity. Mentions are usually bestowed upon businesses which have stood the test of time, or are well-liked and trusted, or are frequently referred by consumers themselves. They can be found in local business directories, local chamber of commerce website, local business association websites, and even in local media.
Engaging in the top local search results needs no magic. It requires work on your part as owner. You can begin by creating an official website and a profile page for your business. Post your profile page on Google local SEO to link it with local search results.
A software called RescueTime helps you track where your time and effort goes as a virtual project manager. By using this, you are able to look back your log, you then say, what tasks may be
eliminated immediately? You’ll be amazed, you’ll say, I’m spending three hours per day on checking my email messages. Then you’ll say exactly what can I really do to cut back on doing that task?
Or I keep on spending time on this task but it’s not really a money task, it’s not making me anything. Which means you need to start off through the elimination of tasks or identifying tasks that
you can eliminate straightaway.
Then from the next thing you should do is to identify tasks that others can do better. You have to identify the most time-consuming tasks to begin with. Items that take your most time are the things that you need to outsource first after you find a virtual assistant.
Just make sure that what you are going to outsource are those time consuming jobs in your SEO campaign that play a huge role in enhancing your daily business operations. This is where you will get great value for money in outsourcing these tasks to keep your business going.
Check if it is your core competency. For example, if you are a copywriter and that's where you’re spending much of your time on a daily basis, then that’s fine. You don’t want to outsource that specific task. Then check out other stressful tasks, and determine those important ones to outsource. You have to begin working on identifying the most important tasks to focus your main efforts.
Going to Fiverr and spending five hours searching for anyone to sing why the SEO Method is excellent, may not be the most effective use of your time as a virtual project manager. It’s fun but not worth spending much of your energy. You should know best places to be focusing and spending time. Then, work on planning your growth. This can be as soon as you begin getting the systems together and outsource to help grow your business. While doing so, ask yourself, is your business dependent on someone or are you building a business that is highly dependent on processes and procedures?
Obviously you need to develop business models that’s influenced by tried and tested processes. This is key so that you have a good reference to use should a person decides to leave.
The other thing too, all systems should have one step by step process. So be very careful on reviewing certain steps that must be accomplished before moving on to the rest of the steps to complete a specific process.
You should be careful though, that you’re not the bottle neck in between each one of those steps. Once you’ve got a couple of assistants, have them do some quality checks to determine if some steps in those processes need improvement. Be aware of the issues that are coming up in this process and note those down to help make these processes better as you go along.
I experienced this on my business as soon as I decided to hire my project manager. I have found out that I was the bottle neck and the job ad that I wrote out of it was ‘I am the bottle neck with my virtual assistants.’
What would happen, I’d get one virtual worker started on something, I’d move to the next, move to the next, get all the way to the end, having given everyone a task to keep them busy. The guy back at the start had finished his work and I needed to go back and give him new work to do. So I just found myself jumping from assistant to assistant all the way through, and I never had time to focus on that money task.
This is when you know, when you start to get this at this point, that’s when you start to think, maybe I need to hire a virtual project manager. Get it out of your head, the idea of using these effective systems in managing your business. Sure it might take you ten minutes to do, but if it takes you thirty minutes to teach someone, you need to figure it out, if it’s a recurring task, then outsourcing that particular thing is the best way to go.
Visit http://www.davidjenyns.com/ to learn more in-depth insights with our SEO training DVDs.
If your business has existed online for a fairly long time now, you could be one of those who continually strive to building links. Looking back, the term backlinks got famous along with the emergence of different online businesses.
For most internet marketers and website owners, backlinks are determining factors of a website’s or business’ success. However, novice owners of online businesses usually get confused about how backlinks really work. Understanding the concept behind backlinks is easy.
The internet can be simply related to a highway. The line of stores situated in the towns the highway traverses is similar to the number of online businesses in the web. Say you are a store owner who wants to attract potential customers to your joint. For this to happen, signposts and diversions from the highway leading to your store are needed.
Symbolically, the signposts and diversions are the backlinks and your store is the website of your business. Such comparison clearly shows that backlinks are the incoming links from other websites pointing to your website. As a matter of fact, the quality of each link reflecting your website greatly affects the standing of your business.
What Are The Ways To Get The Best Backlinks For Your Website?
Every website owner’s priority is to obtain quality backlinks because they are helpful in up surging traffic building. They can also increase a website’s ranking in the search engine results. Following are the means to obtain them.
To start off with the backlink building, you can register your website to different online directories. Some of them charge their customers for the services they offer. Two of the free online directories to take note are DMOZ and Yahoo. Before registering your website to any directory, do a quick check on its status.
Backlink building entails consistent efforts from the website owner or from the webmaster. Part of this should be the goal to include your website to as many directories available. When choosing directories, ensure that they are keyword rich with highly targeted categories and titles. One thing to avoid – never use suspicious means of generating backlinks. Search engines can ban your site for that.
To get free backlinks, you can submit articles related to your site’s content to different article directories. Besides article posting, they allow your website’s link to be posted on the lower portion of their page right at the end of your article.
As a reader enjoys your article, he will link to your website for more details. Definitely, he will even share this with other people he knows. This, then, becomes a great means for your website’s search engine optimization techniques.
Keep in mind that the main purpose of your website is to provide quality content and helpful insights more than getting a high ranking in the search engine result pages. It should exist for that reason. Quality is everything when it comes to online businesses.
Connections With Social Networking Sites
With the emergence of social networking sites, site owners have found another opportunity for website owners to create backlinks. Creating a profile on famed sites like Facebook, LinkED and Tweeter opens the door to generating endless number of backlinks for your website as you can post there your official link.
Increase in quality traffic comes from repeated views from visitors. This can be achieved by updating your profile regularly – keeping it fresh with interesting and useful information.
Blogs and commenting on them are definitely connected with social bookmarks. It can boost the number of best backlinks available for your website when paired with other effective methods. This could give your website to top the search engine rankings.
Nowadays, a lot of online business owners want to know the perfect time to hire a project manager for their business. You need to hire a project manager when you find yourself spending a lot of time delegating tasks to a number of virtual office assistants. Having a project manager in place will take care of doing these things for you so you can finish those tasks that you need to do.
Fortunately, I have a project manager carrying these tasks for me. We use a website priority sheet to serve as a database of the specific tasks each assistant has to work on. We talk about the details that should be included on this spreadsheet and we communicate on a daily basis to know the various tasks that each assistant is working on.
I allow my project manager to get it done and make sure that everyone has a list of task to do. I do believe that this is a part of the business that should be completely hands off to see its effects on running your business using this simple system. You just need to make sure that you also have a system to do spot checks on the progress of each task included in the worksheet to monitor the entries if these tasks are updated for each assistant.
It is highly suggested that you focus on outcomes, not tasks. Do not make a mistake of finding tasks just to keep all assistants busy. Your system should carefully select the type of work that each assistant can deliver within a reasonable period that greatly affects the success of your business.
Ask your project manager, to be familiar with the 4-Hour Work Week and how you apply these concepts on your business. You can assign your project manager to manage your funds as needed. Give access to your PayPal account and let her take care of a certain amount that she can spend for necessary purchases related to your business. By this time, he already knows how you think, the systems that you follow and so he has a better idea on how to spend the money you entrusted to him. He knows the idea behind best value spending and you will definitely help this person to showcase his ability to take care of these things for you in this critical area of managing your business operations.
One other thing to bear in mind, is to let a project manager work with only seven people or less at a time. Develop mini project managers if you need to as you would like your main project managers to be in the same office for better communication.
So have one project manager to work with two assistants as well as the staff that is skilled in a specific task, while another project manager has another set of skilled assistants which are working for him. This is so you can let one project manager to be free in doing these SEO techniques so he can focus on doing much higher level tasks for your business. In the event you provide them with more than seven assistants to manage, it can get a little bit chaotic and is going to be challenging to manage, thus, defeats the purpose of hiring a project manager in the first place.
That’s how I hire project managers, I bring them in house. You can also learn a tip from James Schramko, that is for you to identify entrepreneurial individuals to become your assistants. Get these people on board and help them create their own business while they work for you.
Set up a deal that will also benefit your assistant in the long run. For example, offer a premium or commissions out of the sales that you will be getting. Things like that would definitely make them happy and more motivated to do their best to work for you and help your business grow in the long run.
Take time to come up with a system to educate them with SEO basics and make them understand that they need to do their best to help grow your business. Be confident in hiring a project manager to take care of these things for you and let this person assist you in managing this part of your business today.
How do you go about hiring your virtual assistant today? Once you start to hire a virtual assistant for your business, you look for someone to work for you. For example, I look for someone to work for five hours weekly to accomplish my PPC management as part of the SEO services that I offer. So then you can certainly increase your bigger team of smaller out taskers who join you being an outsourcer. They do the job regularly but they are not on your payroll as your regular internet entrepreneur.
Look for a PPC manager to work on PPC tasks alone as opposed to getting anyone to fit in doing this as well as trying other tasks to complete. Get a clue from your organizational chart to get a clear picture of where people are supposed to fit into your company based on their skills.
You’ll draft that, based on the profit model in your SEO company and then the first thing that I’d do is hire a Mom to work for me in the office. You can outsource, get someone in-house because I find it easier. It gets me from doing the usual admin type of work. If you’re trapped in doing admin tasks, sometimes you never reach doing the real work you should be doing. You’ll learn as well, there is another reason for hiring a Mum in early stages of your business, as opposed to hiring a whole lot of outsourcers and be tied in assigning tasks to them instead of getting something done right away.
That explains why you need to start with hiring a Mum as a virtual assistant online and start building your hiring system as you go. Maybe you buy the outsourcing training DVDs first, then get her to view it after so she can build a method for hiring and consider her to work on your support and admin type tasks.
Just to get really particular here, if you can, hire a Mom whose youngest child is about 3 years old. They’ve got through every one of the teething problems and they’ll be around you for just two years on a part time basis before the kid visits school. In 2 years’ time you may already have a system to refer to in terms of managing a virtual team and then start to look for someone to work for you on a full-time basis.
So if you want to hire a virtual assistant, a Mom who are able to start with you is the best pick and build as you go. As the kids age, they need less attention for their Mom, so she could take more time to help you in the business and make it grow.
The majority of the Moms I know, have no idea what virtual business is about. That is why you have to find a way to decide to make use of your network to discover them because this is like a goldmine to get a Mom nowadays, it becomes an ideal work for her. We really need to find methods to connect this work opportunity with Moms.
I have found Moms by advertising in class newsletters in my local area. I’ll go and run an advert within the school newsletter, ‘Looking for an internet savvy Mum, and spend $25 to advertise in the school newsletter. Now that's a great deal to begin with.
There’s a fantastic resource to consider in Victoria, Australia called Melbourne’s Child too. It’s a news magazine for brand new parents. That’s an excellent resource to try as you would like to go to the place where these folks frequent. Now that explains why online marketing space is really ideal for any type of starting internet business because you can get to promote anything to get the right person to view it, be it job ad or a business opportunity.
They are in the school newsletters, they are reading Melbourne’s Child type newspapers and other parenting magazines. So it is best to advertise there. They are likely to thank you to get some work to have a break from changing nappies. We also advertized on Seek and got a hundred and fifty Mums reply. You can also check out monster.com if you’re in the US and vaplacements.com if your are in Australia.
So now you know these quick tips if you want to hire a virtual assistant? Once you’ve mapped out your profit model and the organizational chart, you have to do the following: First thing you need to do is identify tasks that may be eliminated. This is key. If you’re getting started, then refer to Peter Drucker's The Effective Executive, the first thing you must do is pre-plan what you do more than a one week or two week period. Use a timer in doing this task for 2-3 weeks to find out where your own time was going before you get everything set up and start getting more assistants for your company.
Visit us at http://www.davidjenyns.com/ for more insights and discover more with our SEO training DVDs.
I am an internet business coach and I am the type who ask my applicants about their work history during a job interview. I'd like to know if they have concerns over their previous jobs, or if they are the problem. Star players love to talk about their past employment experiences, they love to talk about their success and contributions to the company. This is a different case for those B players who would avoid talking about these things. So make it a point to ask these type of questions as part of doing effective job interview techniques.
I already have a gut feeling early on if they are fit to work in my SEO company. If they do not fit, I still give them a chance, I throw questions at them, just for them to be able to go through the interview. Ultimately, I do not want to waste their time as well, but I still want to give them a chance to open up about their application that is why I still do my best to accommodate them.
I usually start off by asking about specific details in their work history. I dig on topics related to their responsibilities, major setbacks, accomplishments, what they liked most and least, reasons for resigning and their supervisor's names as well. I also ask them about specific feedback about their supervisor as well as their strengths and weaknesses.
During a particular job interviewing session, I asked this important question about the one supervisor they like the most and least and the reason he enjoyed working for them. I use that as a clue on the reason they like to be working with someone to get an idea on how they prefer to be managed. Another question is the manner they want to receive a job, if he prefers to have it step by step or have the overview instead. This will definitely giveaway their personality, so be keen about understanding their answers.
Another is about the way they learn SEO services - videos, books, diagrams? This is because we do a lot of tasks using Camtasia and ScreenFlow. We just want to be sure that they would be comfortable to get instructions and learn through the use of these screen recording software.
A crucial part of using these job interview SEO techniques is to dig about their expertise. It is best not to have a set order on the questions that you will throw at them so they would not have an idea on the next question to answer. Questions like "What is your greatest strength?", "If you have to choose, would you work alone in a task or with a team?", "What is customer service?" Make sure to take note of their answers to these very important questions.
They must give me an idea that they care about customers in business. Part of their job is to make sure that they will overdeliver to their customers because they are the ones who are putting food on the table. I get their thinking about this by asking a very broad question about business. I do this so that I will have an idea on how they will interpret the question based from their own experiences.
I just realized that I am hiring very entrepreneurial people lately because they are involved in their own projects after working for me. This benefits my business as well because they use their expertise and drive to do the tasks well because they also treat mine as their own. That is why it is really a good move to hire highly entrepreneurial people nowadays.
I hire slowly and fire quickly. That is my personal approach in hiring virtual assistants. I use effective questions that will bring out the best in them as part of these job interview techniques for online businesses. This will also enable you to select the best players for your team to help you succeed on your online endeavors.
Visit us at http://www.davidjenyns.com/ for more insights and discover more with our SEO training DVDs.
Business owners are generally sold to the idea that a great part, if not all, of its investment should go to the company product. They miss the fact that there is also a need to invest on the employees who make company operations running smoothly on a daily basis. When uncontrollable things happen, a slack performance by the employees can mean down turn for the company’s progress. To arrest this possibility, inviting a business motivational speaker to a company event becomes the perfect means for business owners and employees alike to heed advice from an expert in order to trust each other more, aim for teamwork and share one set of values and one vision as they work hand in hand towards company success.
Tough times come and certain circumstances strike even the most diligent employee with boredom on his daily work routine. By upholding his importance in the company and what he could get to his own benefit in return, an employee’s mind retains its focus on his tasks. Consequently, he sees the different things he can do to help improve the company’s business marketing strategy. Both of these come out as a result of encouraging words spoken by a keynote motivational speaker. After motivating them, the speaker then, makes the employee/s feel secure of their position in the company as investors remain willing to support their well-performing organization.
Hiring an internet marketing consultant to do all these talk can make or break your company’s much-awaited progress. As a company owner, you should have a good understanding of a speaker’s role and what he is capable to do for the benefit of your company as progress along with employer-employee issues are at stake to be resolved or to worsen if not properly addressed. Before you settle into agreement with anyone, educate yourself first of the characteristics a business motivational speaker should have. At the outset, you should bear in mind that the goal of such an expert is to bring change or improvement to the present work relationship between the management and the employees.
When invited to a company event, the speaker establishes the keynote or mood as he moves the heart of his listeners to embrace the goal he has in mind and get them all fired up to work under the banner of unity. A good speaker not only rouses emotions among his audience but also presents them direct and attainable ideas which lead the company’s future to one direction.
A business motivational speaker is often invited to get the message pertaining to the benefits of change across his targeted audience. In most companies, change is unwelcomed because the employees are hesitant to give up their time-tested work routines for new ones. Specifically, senior employees are hesitant about changes that come along with implementation of technology. Whatever the concerns of his audience may be, a skilled speaker can break down proposed changes into small and more understandable concepts and emphasize its positivity that his listeners may accept it as important and beneficial to them as well. This is only made possible if the keynote speaker is armed with a detailed knowledge of the company’s profile and goals and the ability to express them in plain and thought-provoking language.
Finally, checking whether the business motivational speaker you are going to work with is greatly self-experienced is another important factor to consider. Giving pieces of advice based on facts may seem remarkable and impractical at the same time. Sometimes, the most credible ones are those that are based on self or personal experiences of experts hailing from the same field. Such words of reason that can combat the daily obstacles in a workplace will surely echo throughout the lives of his audience.
When Australian internet marketers are thinking of hiring virtual assistant today for their internet business, these employees are starting to ask if they can be paid using Australian dollars because of the strong value of this currecy at the moment. This currency is something that is predictable and you will know how much you will allot for compensating the services of your VA and it is better to use it if you will pay your assistants in US dollars.
Most of the time, you do not need to look for other places to hire your staff. You can look at the local schools, ask them to go to your office like what mums are doing. Personally, I like working with mums because they are very reliable people, they have gone through years of corporate experience. Now, they still want to earn on the side, while taking care of their family, which is something that can also benefit you. Mums are awesome workers and I can say that from experience.
You can stumble upon those who have extensive corporate background. They just opt out of working in that environment because they already settled down and have their own family. I just worked with one who have already moved on to another company but I can say that she worked great for me when she was here. She took minutes of our meeting, did a lot of organization and documentation. She also did some system implementations which is great. You can also find the same type of people to work for you especially if you offer higher virtual assistant rates.
Unis can also be a good alternative, I use it when I want someone to work on a web 2.0 task or video. As for everything else, you can check out SEEK. I already included tips like these in my outsourcing training DVDs.
If I am looking to hire overseas then there's Jobstreet. Another site to go to is bestjobs.ph, the one owned by John Jonas.
Another good place to go to is Remote Staff. They have both US and Australian based office which is great. What's great with RemoteStaff is that they will be doing these hiring tasks for example, hiring virtual assistants. You just send your job description and other details and they will help you out find the right people to work for you. They select top three applicants, go through the whole process with you and just pay $200, they'll take care of the payroll in your behalf as well.
Although they do not have an office in the Philippines, they become the person that connects you to the employee. They'll take care of those related HR tasks, you just have to get an agreement done which is quite easy, especially for an SEO company like the one I run today.
Outsourcers to the Philippines also known as Hubport Interactive does this for you. This is a company based in the Philippines. They will find someone to work for you, but this person will still go to their office and work with a team but this person will just be assigned to work on your projects. This will attract someone who wants to become a virtual assistant and have the feel of a regular office environment as well.
If you are familiar with Tim Ferriss, he mentioned something about outsource companies. He basically refers to those companies that have a project manager to help you find the right people to work on your projects. They have almost everything there, like article writer, web developer, virtual assistant, but they are all working with their company's clients. What I prefer is the setup where there is a chance to build a relationship with the person working for you, something like that of a dedicated VA.
With my outsourcing, I have a concern over consistency of results when someone works for me. So that is one of the major considerations I am thinking when I am hiring virtual assistants. I'd rather have a dedicated person to work for me, unlike going through the same situation mentioned by Tim. Anyway, if your VA still wants to maintain an office setup then Outsourcers to the Philippines is the company to help you get your VA soon.
Increased traffic to your website along with a top position on the first page of the search engine result sheets are two of the major goals sought by website owners in order to have successful product or service promotion. These may be achieved through On-site SEO and Off-site SEO. Although both sets of search engine optimization products are beneficial, the off-site one can save much of your valuable effort and time. On-site SEO involves the creation of meta tags, meta descriptions, uploading of appropriate images, writing and posting of useful webpage content and establishment of outbound links. Such activities all require direct work with your hands. Meanwhile, all things happening on their own without the manipulation of a webmaster or a web owner are part of the Off-site SEO techniques. Link wheel creation, which is an advanced form of link building, comes as the latest among them. This process allows your website to be linked or connected to other websites.
More precisely, such an Off-site SEO basics helps in the creation of a pattern
that will prod multiplication of current links that may be just around the corner of any website. It has been on the top of the list of natural ways that can be done to produce an increased
amount of links or backlinks for a certain website. By religiously improving its implementation, any domain or your own, for that matter, can achieve high value as more and more high quality
links get connected to it. As its name include, the life of this process are the link wheels which are clusters of links pointing to your website. If poorly created, these link wheels can do harm
than good to your site so if unsure of its proper creation, hire an expert that can do Link wheel service for you.
The essence of this off-site technique is the creation of microsites that are connected back to your webpage. At a maximum, it may involve more than one hundred microsites but it can always start with a minimum of 12. Basically, it includes one site with a 300-word article at the least of unique content, a link to your targeted website and a link to one of your microsites. Press release domains such Hubpages.com, Wordpress.com and Blogger.com should be your marked places for the posting of your microsites. With their marketing features, they contribute promotion to your microsites and your webpage as well. Afterwards, place a link to each of your sites. Through this link wheel creation step, you pass on value to your other sites. A link wheel of value then becomes a by-product when these simple procedures are repeated.
Basically, all your efforts to build links to your website will be put into waste if it does not showcase excellent web branded content. Making sure that your website and its microsite offer insightful information is the first thing you should consider before diving into the entire process. There is a cut-throat competition among websites out there. Millions of webpages are thriving to land on the first page of the search engine results sheets. All of them for sure are seeking the rewards of properly executed link wheel creation. Thus, you better make your web content stand out among the rest.
So to speak, quality articles are link wheels themselves. As part of the natural way in generating links they should be worth each reader’s time. A well-written article can speak for the whole website being promoted. Besides content, it too should hold a proper amount of keywords all throughout its body as this will increase its online visibility. Keep in mind link wheel creation can work for your website when it is matched with excellence.
Leveraging your team is important. Up until about three years ago I guess, two and a half years ago, it was pretty much me, my wife and a couple of virtual assistants who were running a fairly good size operation. I’ve had some pretty big new lofty goals around what we want to accomplish in the entrepreneurial space. For that, we need to bring a team in. So now for me, the leverage is about finding the right people, the right culture, the people who fit what we’re doing, so they’re able to be working when I’m not working and pushing through to the common vision.
That’s probably another leverage point, is I spent a lot of time creating what one of my coaches calls a painted picture and this is where our business is going to be in the next three years. Now everybody has read it and they’re all on board with it and so they know, instead of me as the boss or the CEO always having to get a final say in everything, if it fits the painted picture, they’re free to work on it at will. So there are three really key leverage points: reusing the content as best as you can, making sure that you’ve got the team and getting the right people and then painting that picture. I suppose they’re real key leverage points.
I think one of the things a lot of people say, is, when I first started getting my e support answered, my customer support as it came through, that was a big stepping stone.
One big leverage point that would totally make sense is copywriting, getting that skill. Now I have a product called Copywriting Seminar in a Box. I learnt early on when I sold medical equipment, that I didn’t like just walking up and being toe to toe, belly to belly with someone making that sale. I could if needed but I didn’t look forward to the rejection.
So when I learnt about direct response sales letter copywriting, I said, wow, this is really exciting. So then I just learnt everything I could on psychology and writing sales letters and sales copy and so forth. That was a big leverage point because that actually took my Dad’s business from a regional player to where we were able to compete nationally because I was writing ads for them to sell. Also, the medical equipment my Dad would look and say, nobody’s going to buy this. I said, let’s just try it and see what happens. That was a big leverage point and learning that skill of copywriting or having that in your business, I think it’s a very learnable skill. That’s a huge leverage point because now, you get tens of thousands of people coming to your website and they all get the exact same sales message delivered perfectly.
When you start off you’re typically doing everything, and there are definitely parts of your business that you’re better at and you have more leverage at. I would much rather have somebody I paid, $8, $10,$12 an hour handle my customer support because that’s not really my unique ability or something that I’m incredibly good at. I limited my time to product creation, to copywriting and striking deals with other people because that is where I saw the biggest, highest leverage of my time.
I also get into some crazy adventures with everything I do. I’ve got the Maverick program as well where I go up and you do all these different crazy things with other like minded entrepreneurs. I’ve done everything from halo skydiving to running with the bulls and going zero G and I’ve signed up to do the Virgin Galactic. This makes my life full of rich and exciting experiences, apart from my work. My whole philosophy is banish the ordinary and create a life really worth living.
In my internet business, I have tried to really position myself, I’m an info marketer, I have a lot of educational material for the internet marketing crowd doing business SEO. A lot of people I suppose, are trying to build up these info businesses and I have been able to do this fairly successfully. It may be interesting if someone was looking to build their info empire, to know how I go about it and I will draw on some of my past experiences.
I definitely love information marketing, publishing. It is one of the best businesses out there. One of my books is Moonlighting on the Internet, it is a $15 book on Amazon or wherever you buy books. In that, we have a really good road map for info marketing. The reason I love it so much is, you can get started for pretty cheap and you can take your passion or your hobby or whatever you’re really into and start selling information to other people around that.
What I’ve found, we’ve had students, doing everything from potty training to guitar lessons. One guy was selling information on how to take an engine out of a particular car and put it into a different car because the engine blocks were the same or something like that and I didn’t quite get it, but the guy was doing $100,000 after I helped him out.
That’s what’s so exciting about the internet right now, is that all these people will self identify being successful through the right approach to marketing. He was selling to Honda Civic owners to tell them how to take an engine out of an Accord and move it to a Civic. That’s pretty specific. Ten years back or fifteen years back, you’re not going to be able to do that, but today I can target people who are just interested in ferrets or just interested in particular guitars even, and that’s what gets really exciting.
Public domain is one of the ways of tackling the information business. When I start talking to people about the info business, first of all I think most of us have something that we’re either an expert or an authority in, or enough of one that we can go out and sell a product on. I really look at some of the big hooks and some of the big ideas that have to be there. With the ease of selling information online right now, there comes more competition, so that means you have to stand out and differentiate yourself.
A lot of people have skills and talent that they just don’t realize other people would be interested in. So I always start off on a little brainstorming session where we just get them to think about the jobs that they’ve held, the passions that they have, the magazines that they read, any sort of problem that they’ve had to overcome, whether it’s personal or business, anything ‘how to’ related, anything that their friends or family ask them about for advice and so forth and in there is typically a kernel for something that could become an information product for sale.
Then of course there’s the bigger question of, ok well how do I package it up and sell it and do I make it an e book or should I make it an audio program, should it be a full blown home study course and so forth. So it’s almost like there’s the cursory review of info marketing which is, hey we’ll put something out there, maybe we’ll put together an e book.
Lately I have become interested in the concept of the two hour workday and working online and have registered the domain name. I have that as a potential. To evolve into that space, to be able to do two hours a day, you’re clearly going to have to be focusing on the twenty percent that gives you eighty percent reward. I talk in my blog about the 80-20. You need to identify what it is you should work on. Everybody is bombarded. Everybody gets emails every second day on the latest launch and what is coming out. Sometimes it’s hard to know where exactly to apply that focus.
There are two considerations I find with this when you learn SEO step by step. You’ve got the very economical side of this. The 80-20 rule is an economic principle, so you can look at it from a very numbers based assessment. You just look at the numbers, where you’re getting value. Do that, don’t do what you’re not getting value from.
I threw in a little emotional component like I learned from Marlon Sanders. I decided what I personally wanted to do and what I didn’t want to do. To tie that into an 80 – 20 rule, it works well because it means you can find what you personally enjoy doing, which hopefully will also be something that will be high leverage as well. Then you can hand everything else to other people.
For example, with blogging right now, it’s not as hands off as a proof reading business I had because I did eventually have someone running it for me. Blogging I still write the majority of my content to that blog. However, I’ve realized that writing is what I enjoy, what I’m good at, it’s a very high leverage point for me and with the 80 – 20 rule, it’s probably safe to say that the blog articles I’ve published for the last five years are the single highest point of value derived from my business long term.
You can’t put a value on two thousand articles individually, but you can say, everything that has come as a result of my business has come from those articles, getting traffic for me, bringing people to my email list, eventually some of those becoming customers, getting invited to talk on stage, getting me to do interviews, letting me meet famous people, all comes down to writing those articles. That’s a very high leverage for me.
Now it feels like the way that I’ve gone, I’ve evolved from an entrepreneurial point of view. I’ve stepped out. But then I’ve stepped back in and I’ve started to assume the role of Yaro and that is my main business. It feels like I’m further tying myself into this business. I’m not creating a saleable asset that will work outside of me.
It’s a concern more than a strategy. To sell the business right now would require a transition period to move it away from based on my brand to either based on someone else’s brand or maybe even change the model slightly. I’ve thought about this because I’ve got the five year itch. I’ve been blogging for five years and so I could move on at this stage.
My writing will be definitely part of what I do but maybe not in the same area forever of course. I’ve thought about obviously if my blog at the moment is primarily my content, it would be transitioned into a magazine or maybe one expert would take over. There are a lot of available business models and if you go to a website that is already ranking well, if you just get good content, it doesn’t have to necessarily come from me. It is possible to rejig the blog a little bit the branding so it’s not just about one person, it’s more about the site itself or maybe a new person.
There would definitely be a loss of some audience, they would only want to read that person. But a lot of it could come down to the income. From a business point of view if you’re going to buy an asset you care whether the income will keep coming, whether it’s going to grow and how much work is required to maintain it.
So if I stepped away from what I do and the income disappeared, my asset’s not worth very much. If I step away from it but they find a way to write one article a day from another source and the income continues to come in fine, that’s a great asset. It’s a very low labour high return business that could have multi million dollar valuation. So I’m not too worried about working online or that in the sense that I guess I have taken a choice to be less systematized than it could be. It’s something I may change in the future.
There several mistakes that get repeated over and again when people first come to blogging and start attempting to make money online. From my own experience, both going through the process myself and from students and my readers coming up and seeing what problems they have, I think a lot of it, 80% of it is just mindset. It’s the self belief, they don’t think they can do what they’re trying to do and they’re not clear on what they want to do or they think every one else is doing it better or there’s no market for it, they can’t make money from it.
All these things with this SEO company, can be true if you decide they are, or they can be worked around if you decide to work around them and get over them.
First of all, you’ve got to get through the mindset. I’d almost say focusing on your own self belief, this is a hard one to teach people things by John Carlton copywriting. You can’t get self belief just by trying to. You have to actually do certain things, take certain actions and get certain results. When you start getting practical outcomes from doing actions, and realizing that, ok, A results in B. If I do enough of A eventually I’m going to get C.
If I write to my blog once a day, five days a week and manage to that for an entire year, at the end of the year I’ll probably have an audience. It will work but people don’t necessarily believe that will happen because they spend five days doing it and don’t get anything from it. So I think the first thing is to get the mindset right. The second thing is do it anyway. Even when things are going bad, stick to your goal, work your way through it. That’s the important thing.
Once you’ve got that over with, then there are a few very practical things. Technology, we’re all dealing with it on the internet. This is something I struggle with myself. I still struggle with it in lots of ways. They say the biggest road block for getting things done is getting the technology to do what you want it to do.
I’ve been very deliberate with what I do now to find the simplest systems I can, so technology has the least opportunity to get in my way. That’s the way I work with it at the moment. It’s still an issue and I spent at least five years of my internet career making very little money and making websites myself, doing all the email support myself.
I’m not a programmer, I’m not a tech guy. I managed to teach myself html. Then these things like PHP and CSS came up and it was too much. Basically I got other people to do that but it took me five years to drum it into my head that you don’t do tech if tech is not your strong point. It’s a big lesson.
Another mistake I made and it took a while to understand this as well because I came from a background where I was watching bloggers do what bloggers do. What bloggers are great at if they’re good bloggers is creating content. They just write and write and they build up an audience but they very rarely have a good business and marketing mindset behind that to make money.
I was fortunate because I studied internet marketers as well. Some of these were Frank Kern and Geoff Walker, Eben Pagan. Rich Schefren and John Riesse, all these guys were influential throughout my marketing experience because I was blogging and studying internet marketing.
I learned to build an email list. That was a huge mistake I made because it took twelve months of constant work blogging before I decided to add an email list to my blog. After that I started building a list and within twelve months I had two assets. I had a successful blog and a nice subscriber base in my newsletter.
When it came to selling on line products I probably would sell two or three times more than anyone else would with just a blog because I had the email list as well as the blog. So my business today is pretty well based around those two assets, email marketing and blogging. I’ve got my products and I sell and those things are what fuel everything and it took me a while. Adding an email list to your strategy from day one is a smart idea when you make money online, so try and not make that mistake.
I'd like to talk to you about how to blog and these SEO training dvds. Professional blogging is what I am occupied in now, I suppose and it’s almost like I’m building up that personality and that brand. It was definitely a case of falling into this space, more than anything else. It really is hard to look back and say I knew anything would happen. My blog was started as an experiment into SEO. I was running a proof reading business with the stuff I learned from Frank Kern. Actually a friend came to me and said, these blog things are really popular at the moment. They’re great for search traffic and you should maybe check them out and get one for your proofing business.
I didn’t know what blog meant. I googled and found out. Then I found some software you could install called Moveable Type. I added that to my proof reading business and for three months I very sporadically tried to write about the subject of proof reading, not really the subject of proof reading, but what I thought would bring customers to a proof reading business. This was the driest and most boring subject matter ever, so it didn’t last very long.
That is why that blog wasn’t really successful but it was a great experience to own a blog and know how it works and what the software does. It was good for getting your head around the difference between a blog and a website, which for some people is very subtle.
I then decided I actually liked this blogging thing. I’m just going to start Entrepreneur’s Journey. The domain name is terrible. It is entrepreneurs-journey.com. First of all, no one can spell entrepreneurs, it’s got a hyphen in it, I don’t own the version of it without the hyphen, so it’s just not a great domain name in terms of what you’d advise people to register nowadays. But it’s turned out to be a very accurate brand for what the blog is about.
I’ve been writing to it for five years. It has become and always has been, a chronicle of my entrepreneur’s journey. The reason I can’t say I knew anything would happen in hindsight, is because it literally started as a hobby. I decided to tell stories from the different businesses I had run. I found out that I liked writing. I hadn’t had any experience as a writer. I got a grade A in high school for English. That is the extent of my qualifications as a writer.
It turns out people enjoyed the writing style and they subscribed to my writing. I just kept leveraging that and kept enjoying it. Five years later, everything else I did has been sold off and I basically leverage, as you said, and I brand, my blog’s brand and traffic to build an email list, sell my products, sell affiliate products and do advertising. Everything is all around, you could say it is my name, but it’s not just the name, it’s how you write, what you talk about. You do video, you do audio, you do interviews, and your voice and your face is on screen.
All these things come to have an impact on the people who come into contact with your work and that can influence their decision to buy from you later on. You’re obviously running a business around your blog. Those are my tips on how to blog.
I'd like to talk to you about when I flip websites. When I went looking to deliberately acquire some websites after I learned stuff from the SEO training course, I actually tried to replicate what I already knew. I knew two things at the time. I understood forums. I knew how they worked, how they could potentially make money without you doing much work. I also knew blogging because by the time I was already running my own blog. I understood blogs are based on content, and how to make money from them. They were the two things I focused on. I focused more forums to be honest.
Every day I watched, it was called Sitepoint at the time, now it’s Flippa. Is Site Build It a scam? I just watched to see if there were any sites that flagged the right criteria for me. That’s A, were they a forum, B, did the forum have a certain number of daily new posts and replies? So I just wanted to see repetitive action, people actually participating in the community, how many active members were in the community at any point in time, how long the forum had been on line, what was the unique visitor count, and was it making any money, what market was it in?
Those are the sort of criteria I looked for. I knew if I could find a forum which matched my criteria, I could take it over, usually improve it by adding some more monetization, perhaps increasing the number of banners I had on the site, maybe adding an email list and even adding a blog to it.
So that is what I did and I started monitoring Flippa and in fact I will tell you about a case study from my experience with that. The site was a package deal. It was on the subject of mini bikes. It was very niche. I had no idea what it was when I first saw it. These are basically full, proper motorcycles, but in miniature. They are designed for kids basically and it’s a huge and popular thing to do.
These sites which I bought were actually forums based in Australia, so it was on the Australian mini bike community. Kids were coming there and they’d talk about mini bikes; they’d sell parts, they’d sell bikes. It was not huge as a forum, not a massive niche, especially when you focus on Australia only, but there were two forums in this case in the deal. They were popular and they were making money. I saw avenues to grow the revenue and I acquired them for $12,000. I think at the time they were making $1,000 a month, so I paid twelve times that to acquire the sites.
I then went to work improving the income. In this case it wasn’t a dramatic increase. I think we went from $1,000 to about $2,000 a month in revenue. I owned that for several years and eventually I sold them for double. So it was a nice flip, I ended up making twice as much money as I invested. I made a consistent income stream. In fact they paid for themselves by about month eight of holding them. I’d actually paid for how much it cost to buy them.
The value was created definitely by increasing the amount of money it was producing so that increases the asset value. Most sites out there, if they’re not run by a person who understands internet marketing, they’re not going to inherently know how to improve the performance of a website. In this case, the advertising was Google AdSense and there was one sponsor, maybe two who were paying a monthly fee to put a banner on the site.
So I had a guy, I wasn’t partnering with him, but he was put in charge of these websites and I’d pay him a percentage of the money generated from the advertising, the AdSense. The onus was on him to increase the advertising performance, he got paid more from that turn around. It took the management role off my hands.
What we did was fairly simple. We bought a site and we said ok, let’s go do some googling and find any potential sponsors. Usually there are other sites out there that are retailers of products, and in this case they were miniature bikes. There were other sites selling mini bike products.
All we did was send them an email saying, we’ve got this website, it gets this much traffic, it’s the type of audience you want, we’ve got two more banner positions available, it’s first come first served, it is $100 a month or whatever it was. We increased the amount of inventory we could sell and we increased the amount of sponsors we had.
That immediately had a bottom line effect without doing anything else because they were just paying money to access the existing audience. That’s a simple thing to do, just try and find more sponsors and also add more places to sponsor your site. That's how I flip websites.
I probably should start by explaining how I got into buying and selling websites. First it was something I didn’t even realize was a possibility. Basically it is a very simple story. I was crossing the street. I’m from Brisbane Australia. I was in the Queen Street mall in Brisbane.
I was at a stage in my internet marketing where I had a website focused on a card game. You can get this background when you learn SEO too. I had a forum; there was quite a bit of use of this forum. Maybe five hundred people were there trading their cards every day.
I was making about $500 a month in advertising roughly, around about that. It was like a hobby that I had when I was in university and high school as well. It meant I didn’t have to get a job but I’d well and truly got over that card game and I wasn’t really interested in developing that website any further.
I didn’t really know what to do. I learned a lot from Marlon Sanders. l use the money. I was thinking about traveling, I was thinking about maybe hiring some more staff and things like that.
One day I was walking across the street and I thought, I have a website that makes $500 a month, that is $6,000 a year. It’s fairly auto pilot. I’ve got staff writers, it pretty much generates value without me. It’s a forum, so it generates traffic by itself, people come and use it every day. I thought, this is a saleable asset.
It was like a light bulb went off in my head. I’d never really considered a website before that as a saleable asset, especially the lower level websites. I thought obviously around that time there was the dot com boom, so you had all the stupid valuations of multi million dollar websites. That wasn’t something I considered I would do at the time, just coming from Brisbane. But I had this website making a bit of money, so it had value.
So what I did was, I sold that and it was the first time I had ever sold a website. I got about $13,500 for it. At the time that was about how much money I made in a year as a university student. It was a fairly big lump sum of cash and it was eye opening. That was the biggest thing. It made me realize it was possible. So that’s an important thing to mention because it’s your mindset. You’ve got to think about your website as an asset which is something I hadn’t done beforehand.
That was how I started thinking about the whole possibility of buying and selling websites.
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There are some interesting developments in the way search is going. In a lot of the papers that Larry Page did early on, he talked about personalizing search, by just taking what is a random factor and making a personalized vector. It sounds great until you actually start trying to do it with your SEO campaign. Then you run into problems, well, I’m not the same person today as I was yesterday, at least in terms of what I’m looking for on the web.
If it does come into use, we have a Google video out there which says that they’re now doing it by IP and you have to be logged in and I don’t see a lot of changes. If you start seeing lots of changes, I’m going to have to eat my words. But I think if they actually turn that effect up too high, very high at all, that what we’re going to run into is that search doesn’t make sense to anybody.
Yes, we search a lot, but we search over so many subjects. What is my topic bias really?
I do know when you’re logged in to your Google account, they’re obviously tracking all that you’re doing and depending on what you click, I’m seeing that in my results, more so with search terms that I’m regularly checking in on. Those are the terms where you’re starting to see those changes. That I think is based more on the clicks, not analyzing your social media or anything to do with professional blogging.
Let us switch gears and talk about building links. Writing articles and getting good quality content out there is vital. Most of the work I do myself is with really high end companies, multi million dollar companies, So it’s the teaching I do when I track what students actually say they do, which is usually what they do.
Directory submissions, yes, ok do them but I don’t really focus on that. It’s really about building out the content. If I have a ten page website, what is more important to me, ten more pages or three more links to those ten pages? One hundred percent of the time I’m going to tell you, more content is better. It’s going to allow you to discover more traffic and more different traffic. Content is the focus and it is just about how to get better at creating lots of content.
There are a variety of ways to do that yourself and using outsourcers. That is first and foremost. There is that external linking aspect that has to be done. Certainly there is article marketing. Paid links can work. The challenge there is, knowing how to price the link. Most people run into that. The other thing is it’s a recurring cost, it’s not a sum investment.
Typically, if you do the maths, you’ll find out that often writing content, having outsourcers write content for you, even if it is relatively low quality, is going to beat the paid link. It’s not always true, but certainly that’s something you should look at.
The other thing is that there are paid links and there are paid links. Instead of going to networks, you can go directly to blogs, to bloggers, particularly in your space, you’re getting well targeted traffic as well as a good no followed link. Those are the really good strategies to use. In thirty minutes you can write out exactly what you’re looking for and somebody else can get on the phone and start doing that. You don’t have to actually do that yourself.
As far as blog networks are concerned, the challenge is to the extent that those things are already exposed and known about. It is well known that Google has a very ivory tower view of linking. Despite how rich they are, they don’t score the game based on money apparently. Until they became listed.
At least some part of the company is tracking that. The challenge with live networks is they really are obviously only to get ranked. That’s the whole point of them, that is the reason we do it. I’ve done it too. In order to pass the absurd, actually unreachable standard that Google has put in place, you would just simply have to hide. There is no other way around it. You can’t say, oh, well I really like the traffic from that blog network. Yes, right. It’s really because you’re doing it only for ranking, you just have to make sure Google doesn’t know you’re doing it. So be sure to learn SEO step by step before you go ahead and start an all out campaign.
How you get off site links is a subject of interest for many building their first website and Internet marketing newbie. We’ve all heard that article marketing is king. It’s standard knowledge, except the way it is done, no that’s not it. The one link you got from EzineArticles, is that it?
Well, yes you only got one link out of the deal. So how is that going to work? Besides, how is that better than actually putting the same article on my website? ‘Well off site links are different to on site links.’ Rubbish. And that’s not the real point. What you really want from article marketing what Ezine Articles advertizes, is people pick it up and put it on their own site. It’s the syndication aspects which make article marketing worthwhile.
So now, it’s not about writing an article, it’s about writing an article that somebody else wants and will pick up and put on their site. What I teach is, if you write an article, and in ten days it doesn’t get picked up half a dozen times, you made a mistake. It’s not a good article.
One of the popular things is to figure out how sausage making relates to celebrities, because everybody wants content about celebrities. Or, national events of one sort or another, like how does sausage making relate to the current referendum in Western Australia, if there is one, or the current political debate going on in Congress, which there always are.
Those kinds of things are actually going to go viral and that’s what the real goal of article marketing is. Now you have links from a whole bunch of different unrelated websites. That’s the thing that sets off the threshold filter that says, yes, this is a trusted site.
That seems contrary to the way a lot of people talk. Some say it’s all about getting themed back links. People talk about making sure you’re getting back links from websites that are relevant to the topic that you’re writing on.
I believe you should spend more time looking at search results. When you do that, you’ll see that’s complete hogwash. The reality is that sites rank for the things in the title and the link text. That link text could appear from anywhere.
I’ve used an example literally since 2003 about theming, and it’s not really theming.
What I’m actually talking about, more precisely stated, is cross page topic. If I have a page A that is about a certain topic and it links to page B that has a certain topic, is the topic of page A counted in the ranking of page B or is it just the link text, the blue underlined material on page A? I contend it is the latter. It is only the blue underlined material that gets moved from page A to page B to help it rank.
The proof of that you can actually readily see. The argument is also persuasive in that clearly sunglasses and skiing are related.
You don’t have to go skiing without sunglasses more than once and you’ll go buy a pair in the gift shop. So sunglasses and skiing are related. So a skiing site that links to a sunglasses site, you’ve got to believe that is a good link. Now what about porn and Beethoven? I’m just not getting it. But what data base does Google have to make those sorts of determinations?
We’ve heard lots of rubric recently about related searches and there’s spelling correction and all those other things as you can see on the search results page. Again, if you look deeply in those, you’ll find that’s not the case. That’s at the best co occurrence. People have suggested it may be about the actual click history and things like that. But again, there’s not like this big data base that relates topics for one reason and one reason only, it doesn’t make sense.
In the time I’ve been in software engineering, we’ve been trying to build machines that would actually do natural language processing, would extract meaning from natural language. Guess what? We still haven’t done it and that was thirty-five years ago I started this. The reason it doesn’t work is, there is so little meaning in natural language. It’s not that our software is bad, it’s that we’ve finally realized we don’t actually mean anything when we say things. We can’t actually extract topic.
I don’t see this whole theming thing being used in ranking anytime soon. The simple reason is that we don’t even know how to do it as humans.
Dori Friend began her career as a software designer for Apple and began building out large networks of sites. She then shifted to buying and selling expired domain names and now runs an SEO business, SEONitro. Dori discusses the importance of focusing on one business rather than doing a little bit of everything. Do a 301 Redirect on a new site, she advises, to give your domain age and authority.
Read the rest of this post to learn more about what a true SEO expert has to say about building an online business.
My main stayer is my SEO business and that’s SEONitro. Recently I have been building networks for Brad Cowan. So it’s basically my technology, my networks with his branding. So finally I’m just focusing on my SEO business. I’ve had the shiny object syndrome that a lot of internet marketers get, where I wanted to do a little bit of everything and so I was just making a little bit of money at everything.
I’ve always made a very decent income even way back when I was a software developer for Apple, so my sights have always been pretty high. Since I started really focusing, mindfully focusing on one business, my income has exponentially expanded to places where I’ve never been and it’s really exciting for me. I consciously have to keep doing that to myself every time I see something, I say, oh, I can make money doing that. Then I say, no, no, come back, come back. I’m lucky I have an assistant who keeps me in check. She does, she says, focus, focus, focus. Just the simple words like that, focus. It really has done amazing things for me.
It is all about SEO. I’ve done a lot of other things in Traffic. I was the host of Traffic Rockstars in May and that was a big distraction for me outside of my SEO business.
It was an incredible event and it was a free event, but it was a distraction. It was just one of those things. But I’ve been definitely the SEO behind the scenes for a long time, doing SEO for a lot of the big guys and also for myself too.
I don’t sell my services for SEO anymore. That was trading my time for money and I did not want to do that. Even though I did that for a while and I had other people working for me, right now I lease out my networks to people, not to beginners, mostly to other SEO professionals and people who have businesses that know what keywords convert for them. That’s my typical target range, my clientele.
I also did an SEO basics report for newbies to start out, the first thing to do when they get a site. A lot of people think it has to be aged to get it ranked in a lot of these major industries, but we just proved that it didn’t. We just ranked Brad Callan’s weight loss diet within three months for a lot of weight loss terms and that guy is really banking it right now in that industry. It was a new site and in three months we got it ranking and this is what I did. I found a nice aged domain that had page rank. I’m all about buying expired domains, things that already have authority. Then we did a 301 Redirect for that. Now I know that sounds technical and so on but it is pretty simple, people can just google that. That instantly gives the domain age and authority and gets maybe some page rank because it transfers everything.
I do that on a pdf; it’s called sevenstepseo.com. You can get it there and it’s just a free pdf and it has five steps in it. That was the first one to get your site kick started. Then I tell people to start putting their sites in the directories just to get them indexed. Do a lot of lower level linking and then really pound it in with some higher level linking. But you’ve got to know what keywords convert for you. That’s the most important thing.
You need an SEO campaign because if your keywords don’t convert and this is actually going back to why I stopped taking on clients, too. We didn’t get paid until we got it onto the first page, but then they would say, oh that keyword doesn’t convert and they wouldn’t want to pay us anymore for that keyword after we’d worked maybe six months to get them there. So you need to know what keywords convert for you. That’s the most important thing.
Get more insights from this SEO expert in this Dori Friend interview.
When doing some SEO techniques on a site, you need to make sure you know which keywords convert, so obviously that would start off with
some sort of testing. With our clients in our seo company, most people have run AdWords campaigns and so they know what keywords convert or they’ve just been around long enough to know from their
analytics what is converting from maybe different types of traffic that they’re getting. But I think the simplest thing is doing an AdWords campaign. Not something you have to pay a lot for, but
just to know what keywords are going to convert.
If you’re going after long tail, you can get some decent rankings just by some on page optimization and then go to SEMRush. They track everything that is in the top twenty. Get a report there and find out where you are. You might be listed for a couple of hundred keywords you don’t even know about, like on page two and then start doing a linking campaign to those and that can really boost your traffic too.
So we pretty much look for that low hanging fruit as well, so we’re finding out what keywords convert, going through looking for the low hanging fruit for keywords we are already kind of ranking for but we haven’t got page one listings for and then driving some extra traffic to those. We use the expired domain names as far as picking them up as they expire, trying to find something with some age, with a little bit of authority, obviously some good PR, doing a 301 Redirect back to the site.
Let’s say we’re kick starting a site. We grab one or two domain names. I think I did two for Brad Callan’s weight loss site and that was just to kick start it. It gives an added punch, just a little bit of authority to start it out with. Then we hammered that site with links.
This is another myth. A lot of people think, it’s a new site, I’ve got to start slowly. That’s rubbish, there’s no truth to it. There is a lot of rubbish in the industry, a lot of myths. That’s one of them. You can tell, if you start watching your rankings, if they’re going up, going up and then they start going down, then you know you’re over optimizing.
So what you do is start linking to your site using your url as your keyword, that means your domain name domainname com, http, the url is your anchor text. You start linking to your site with that and it comes back immediately. Using target keywords really helps over optimization so you can watch it and you can steer it until you can finally get settled in on top rankings. You can blast it, we do it all the time, we have a lot of success with it.
Another thing that is a big myth out there is people get content theory. People think I’ve got to have unique articles to link from. Unique articles one, in their site, and two, your unique articles to get links from. I think both are huge myths. Content doesn’t play a huge role in my SEO game, it’s all about off page optimization and that’s links coming in.
I have an example I’ve been linking to my Dad’s olive oil site and all it says is ‘This will be the site of blah, blah, blah.’
I’m already on page two for organic olive oil and I haven’t even been linking from my own networks. This is just something I’m doing and testing and I’m on page two for a lot of these major keywords without any content on the site. I’m not going to push it to page one until I get content on the site but it just goes to show people that I know Google says it’s about content, but it really isn’t.
That’s key, it all is about external supporting links. After the 310 Redirects we move into doing some directories. I still use Directory Maximizer, there might be some other sources out there that are cheaper. That’s 14c a submission. That’s also just going to get you low level links.
I totally believe in low level link building like forums, all that kind of thing, just massive amounts of links that don’t really have any authority behind them. I even go so far as to really value links from sites that are not in Google’s index. Doing my competitive search engine optimization research, this is how I figured that out. Probably up to fifty per cent of the incoming links to sites out there are from sites that are not in Google’s index. Most people don’t know that. So yes, you want to get a variety of links.
Listen To This Dori Friend Interview To Learn More About Effective SEO Tips.
One crucial aspect in running any business is testing. This is one thing that I try to make everyone I talk to understand that you can’t just listen to everybody that sells there in the market
place. You can listen to them only from the standpoint of trying to see if they do some best practices that might work for you, that might work for your product, your market, your channel,
but testing has got to be done.
You have to make decisions based on your own testing and not what everybody else in the marketplace says. This is not just abotu marketing, but it is also a crucial part of most seo techniques. I say that because, number one, from experience, I’ve listened to people and not found what they said to match my own experience. Number two unfortunately there are a lot of people out there that say this is the best, but they really don’t know because they don’t know how to test properly in the first place. It just irks me personally to see too many people hurt from listening to people who don’t really know what they’re talking about.
Even what we say, when we suggest you do certain things, we’re subjective from the standpoint to try this and test it. We’ve tested it, we’re confident in our ability to test it appropriately, but your market is different from ours, your channels could be different, the way you buy your traffic could be different, your AdWords could be different, there could be a whole different group of criteria that would make our test not as valid as yours. So it’s important that people really understand that.
They can be simple AB tests and that’s all that needs to be done even when you are just starting to build a website. We don’t do multi variant testing. We do simple AB tests, AB tests, AB tests. It doesn’t have to be any more complicated than that. I suggest that you do test. It’s a rule in our company that every time something goes up, that there’s a split test.
To do a recap, when someone comes into one of our sites somewhere, the idea is , that we start off having a bonding series of emails sent to them. After they get through the bonding series, which is a no pitch bonding series, then we funnel them into a series of invite emails with the goal to get them to commit to a webinar. Then there is a series after that which is hey, making sure that they show up to the webinar. Very much we’re just tracking the response and what people are doing at every step of the way. When it gets to the webinar, we’ve really only got two things, either they show up or they don’t show up.
If they don’t show up, they get a series that they go through that ends up trying to get them back or getting the mp3 replay whatever it is or some sort of down sell. If they do show up, then we split it into the two, either they bought and then they’ve got the series for the bought or if they didn’t buy, we go through a series that then tries to address all of their objections. At the end of it, regardless of whether they didn’t buy or they didn’t attend the no show for the webinar then they go into a series that basically offers all of our products and this is a very automated system.
I think the most important thing in this process for us is we track every single step of the way. In our process here we’ve evolved to the point where we’re actually tracking something like forty-seven touch points or something. But in the beginning of setting up this process, it’s not that important to do that.
There are two points you need to look at in this process. It’s important your event converts. If that one event, that webinar or that teleseminar or that video or whatever it is that you’re using for your main point, your event, if that doesn’t convert, all the things that surround that event is only super charging something that is not working.
So we go through a two step process. If our event converts and we break even or we’re making some money, then we know we’re starting with a winner and now we start to build all the peripherals around it. Then we can test the event, we can tweak it, we can try different versions of it and then we can test all the emails around it. So that is an important thing. One, the event has to work.
The second thing is, when we start this, we don’t track a plethora of things. There are only a few things we want to know when we start this process. How many people registered, how many people showed up, how many people stayed on until the end and how many people bought the product? That’s the only thing that matters. Why? When you start, you need to have clarity on what you’re going to focus your time on.
In my business life, I focus on the evergreen event driven marketing. I think it’s a fantastic way to think about business and it can plug into any business.
Just to give a bit of background about the reason we got the company going, Richard and I were big in the industry and a couple of years ago we just looked at each other and felt like we were constantly doing new products and releases and we said, you know we’re working too hard, we’re doing this over and over. We’re constantly doing a release and we’re constantly finding partners and we’re constantly working every single day. The results were great, no doubt about it, we were making really good money but we didn’t have the lifestyle that we really wanted and we definitely didn’t have the lifestyle that the internet marketing world touts, you can push this button and make money. The reality is that’s not the reality.
We needed to put things in place for two reasons. One because we wanted that lifestyle, we wanted to be living the dream so to speak, but number two we thought it was our responsibility in our business to our clients to be able to find the right ways to build a long term sustainable business. That’s what we were about, that’s what people come to us for.
After they’ve been through the rat race and tried all those push button things, saying I work twenty hours a day and I don’t seem to be getting anywhere, that’s when they come to us. We felt it was our responsibility to actually test things, build these processes out and really show people at an ultimate level how to build a real, sustainable business that will take them into the future while they’re not working.
Fortunately we’ve been able to do that in an outstanding way. That’s just to give you a little bit of background about why we did what we did and where we’ve got to today. Now we have a plethora of clients who are using these processes as well as many people in the industry who are building tools and things to be able to work and create those processes.
The whole idea of actually mapping out the way that a client will move through the relationship with us came from, I think just the fact that Rich and I are a good team and we use my strengths, we use Richard’s strengths and we use the different strengths of the team to be able to create the ultimate scenario. Part of what we teach when our clients come to our program is all about understanding strengths, understanding your core strengths and how to deal with those and properly deploy your strengths. And this applies to all even if you are in the selling and buying websites business. We just really focus on our strengths individually to really do this but also it is we’ve taken all of the best practices from marketing to operations to processes and put all of those into one package, that’s what we’re doing here.
The important thing about these processes is that they are not all about technology. It’s not about a piece of software that you push a button on. What it’s really about and what makes these practices extremely powerful is the fact that we have not negated the decades or centuries of proven marketing and persuasion techniques that have worked on us as human beings. Those things will never change as long as we are human beings.
Ultimately the most important thing in this process is the conversion even if it is just a home based business, it’s persuading somebody to want to buy your products. Too many people right now in the market, in internet marketing or any business get too wrapped up in technology. They think it is all about technology, but it’s not. It’s really about the strategies and the techniques to deploy the most effective marketing techniques. That’s really what it’s all about. It’s really all about the best practices that we’ve learned and that we’ve accumulated from our partners like Jay Abraham, and Rich and some great people that we were fortunate to be around.
The correct use of Google Analytics is very useful for keyword selection for any new site. However, when you start with Google Analytics you can get just lost in all of the slew of these different metrics and different things to analyze. There is a process involved. When you jump in and look at your analytics, you should start off by picking out five words.
Here’s the challenge, to decide which is the single biggest opportunity in ranking today. Here it is. It’s why top ten no longer matters. That’s obviously the teaser line. It’s intended to create an email that gets opened.
It’s the steepness of the graph that you get when you look at traffic versus rank. This is one of those things that people have been looking at ever since AOL accidentally leaked the data. When you look at the data, you find that it takes, given search terms with the same traffic, five number three ranks to equal the traffic of a single number one rank.
Let that cook for a second. I could have lots of pages. If you have a number ten rank, it takes fourteen of those to equal a number one rank. It’s obviously for the same traffic terms. So what does that mean to us? We need to be very focused. If you’re going to go after a term, do not stop until it’s number one. Just going from number two to number one is three and a half times on average.
What does that say about our focus? One thing that people have said is that short tail matters, and I disagree. Wherever you are going to focus, whether it is short tail or long tail or within a particular segment of your industry, what it means is, don’t stop until you have a number one and then work on the next one. So it almost means you serialize your keyword choices. Almost, it’s not quite true, but it is close to that. This is probably advanced SEO technique.
Pick five keywords, no more than five, because that’s how many fingers I have. So I want to attack a very small number of terms, I want to absolutely command them, and then, while protecting those, I’ll go after the rest of them. So now we ask, which five?
The first thing I’d look for is what is the visitor value? I can look at my logs, I can look at my Google Analytics results and see that this particular search term gets me this much from the visitors I get. Now where is that ranked? Here are a couple of examples. Say I’m on page three, so I’m on position twenty-five, say, and I get half a dozen conversions. I get a hundred visits in a month and I get half a dozen conversions. The visitor value is really good.
If I’m getting a hundred clicks a month on page three of results, what does that tell me about the total traffic available if I’m at position five, or position two or position one?
It tells me there are more. There are thousands, that’s a factor of hundred bigger, so it’s more like ten thousand. Look deep for those, look for things that have really good conversions and really good value when they convert and try to figure out how much of that traffic is actually available. That’s one dimension.
The other dimension is look for things that are knocking on the door. If I’m at position five, I am in the steepest part of the curve because it really goes really fast. It’s pretty flat on page two or three.
You can move from position twenty-five to position fifteen and wonder if you actually did any work. You wouldn’t be able to tell from your traffic graph that you had actually done anything. It was probably a lot of work mind you, but you’re not going to see that in your traffic. When you move from position five to number three, you’ll really notice it, and from three to one, you’ll be a hero.
So those are a couple of different things and you have to balance what the opportunities are, and ultimately there is some arithmetic that you can use to do that. It’s about the mindset. People fail from mindset. The skills of an SEO expert are too trivial to build a business around.
It’s the mindset and the trade off, the processes we have to use to construct a business based on free traffic, where people get completely bottled up, they get completely in analysis paralysis and they don’t do anything, or they do something wrong. That’s where the difference between a successful internet business and a non-successful one comes out.
Now that I have some years of experience in the internet marketing world, I would say that there are a couple of crucial turning points which have helped me create the business online I have today. The first of these turning points I would say is the networking. I started going to seminars about a year ago again. I’d probably had done about two hundred seminars, that's one of my approach to marketing, which I really stopped doing in 2001, 2002. I’d go to a couple but I was just out of it. Then I ended up going back to seminars after a few years’ hiatus and I can’t tell you the networks and the people who are out there.
Just as an example one guy who I met at a seminar two years ago, or a year and a half ago, just contacted me. He’s got a list of 50,000 people and he wants to be my affiliate and promote for me. I don’t even remember him. I do now because we’ve talked, but when I first heard from him I said, oh, where did I meet you? Oh, yes, I remember. These networking things are just huge. Really how are you going to get someone to be your affiliate? How are you going to get a network to be your affiliate?
The first thing is, they’ve got to like you. You’ve got to be honest, you’ve got to be straight, you’ve got to be good and creative with your online business. You’ve got to have the greatest amount of conversion and all that other stuff. All the numbers have to work. But they have to like you.
People like doing things for people who they like. People generally like people who are in this business who network. Get out, share. These were huge things for me, and I just can’t stress how getting off the desk and getting out into the seminar worked for me. There are some good seminars out there.
Even a bad internet marketing seminar, some of the ones that are $500 or $1000 or whatever, even these cheap ones, even if it’s a product dump, where you’re just going to go and get pitched, look at what they’re pitching. Look at what people are doing. Watch what people are selling. Look at their offer. Look at how they’re collecting the cash and what they’re giving away and what they’re charging. Those are huge.
There’s another turning point for me. Learn to love your spam, learn to love your pop ups. Learn to love your email. Learn to love all the stuff that people normally say, I hate. People say, I hate spam. I say I love spam. Why? Because I can see what people are selling. I can see what’s in my in box. I like pop ups, I like banners, I like contextual ads. I can see what’s going on out in the marketplace. This is competitive intelligence.
I think the breakthroughs and the leverage points are more about shifting your mindset than they are about actually doing anything. Just about taking your business seriously, learning to look at the competition and really getting out there and starting to talk to other people. There are a lot of people in my network, and I can just take a sales letter and send it to five or six people who are friends of mine, because we have bought drinks and whatnot, and I’ll get some pretty good feedback from them. These are people who, when you want your product promoted, they’ll promote it.
One guy I knew, I met him a while back at a seminar, he introduced me to an ad rep I’d been looking for who wasn’t returning my call. I’d been trying to reach this particular guy for a while now, and he said, oh, let’s get him on the phone right now. He got him on the phone and he took my call and he said, I’ll answer you’re calls and I’ll call you back. I didn’t know who you were. That’s huge stuff. It’s really about shifting the mindset.
So to summarize, go to seminars and make yourself known, learn to love the advertising of your competitors, and learn to take your business seriously.
That’s one thing that a lot of people don’t fully understand about the advertising and how well you can target that advertising online. A lot of people think they need to give general offers.
They need to be, win an iPod or something that’s got that mass appeal. You can really target it down, even down to, say, the dog cancer market where you’re going to get maybe two hundred people a
day but they’re extremely targeted and will convert really well.
I think what happens when people realize the paid media is out there and available, I think they realize they made their niche marketing too tight. They thought because there were only 8,000 searches and there were only four competitors, they were going to have a good chance to get their page ranked. But with SEO, there are about five parts to the process. There’s getting into Google, there’s getting on the first page, there’s getting people to click through, there’s getting people to opt in and then there’s getting people to buy.
The paid media really has an opportunity to do some niche internet marketing, especially with some smaller networks. Then there’s something else too. If you went to Google five years ago, six years ago and you entered in the word colon cleansing, or teeth whitening you would find that these were relatively niche products. They’re generally interest appeal but in terms of what people were searching for, they really weren’t searching for a lot of teeth whitening tools.
People didn’t start searching for teeth whitening until they started seeing teeth whitening ads and they realized there might be a way to whiten their teeth. One actually led to the other.
Paid media allowed some of these smaller niche products to become blockbusters. The market for a niche product, if it can be spun into a general interest offer, can actually get put into the general interest media and rolled out on a huge basis.
I’ve have been around the industry for a long time and I have seen people make big mistakes when they’re working online that they need an SEO guide to help them at least get started. For most cases, they still have to learn seo, t least the very basics of it and then move into niche marketing.
The biggest mistake is that they’re not building an asset. An asset is defined in an online business in a couple of different ways. The first thing would be a list of people who they can mail so they can get traffic on demand so they don’t even have to buy any advertising. The list would probably be the most critical thing. People have the idea that they don’t need one, or their niche is too small.
When I do even a niche product, I always have an auto responder and I write, 10, 20, 30 sometimes 50 auto response messages, even for a $15-$20 product. Why not? You’re going to see huge conversion rates on something like that, and you’re going to actually build your second asset, which is your list of customers. So you’ve got your list of prospects and then you’ve got your list of customers.
Then the third thing is, they don’t understand some of the more nuanced aspects of business building, like owning their own domains or getting keyword domains or really getting assets that are going to pay off.
They consistently refuse to create their own products. I think affiliate marketing is great. I’m an affiliate, I make six figures a year just as an affiliate, even not working, just based on the list and the assets I build. But it’s not until I’d developed my own products that I really saw payoffs. I’ve made more money in the past couple of weeks with our own product than I have in the past year.
That’s just a matter of I’m the guy everyone wants to send the traffic to. They want to send it to me because they know they’re going to make more money with me than somebody else. So I’m their solution. That is one of the other big assets and big parts of creating your own product. You either get to be the guy generating the traffic, sending it to someone else or you get to be the guy who gets the traffic generated for him. That’s really the key.
If you’re an affiliate, and you find a great offer, start modeling it. If you haven’t created your own product, if you’re still selling e books on niche marketing topics, write some products, create some PLR, make some videos, put together something. If you’re selling for somebody else and making them money, and you’re making a profit, take it to the next level. Make all the profit, get all the traffic and be the person who is actually in charge of this domain that gets all these visitors to it. That’s really it. It’s asset building.
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David: To dig deep, when you set out what you do for the day, what are the tasks that you’re really hands on with? The way you do business is quite structured and you’ve come from that corporate background and you’ve swapped over to the internet marketing world, and you’re not doing everything yourself. There’s no chance that you could be having the success that you are, doing a lot of what you’re doing on your own. All your article promotion and buying links gets outsourced. Is it all the content generation or what other things grab your attention?
James: No, I don’t generate content except for my premium blog posts. I learned about SEO techniques. All of my content is outsourced, part of my traffic is outsourced. I outsource design, programming, some general administration, shopping. It extends beyond the internet. You’ve got to try SEO services and outsource stuff around the house as well if you possibly can, to free you up. A lot of people get distracted and they’re only spending one or two hours on their business. It’s usually 1.5 hours of going through emails and if you’re lucky ten minutes of doing anything to help you get traffic or conversions or create content.
That’s where most people get stuck; it’s just not enough time in on the game.
David: I love that time management stuff. I know there’s that great course, I don’t know if you’ve listened to it, that is Eben Pagan’s Wake Up Productive and The Effective Executive, by Drucker, that’s a great book on time management.
James: I love that stuff. I quote Drucker when I speak. He said it’s about doing the right things, not doing things right, but doing the right things. What I do every day is, I focus on what is going to give me a massive result. So I can leave a lot of stuff. A lot of stuff is trivial. When you get right down to it, there are some things that are going to make a huge difference to your income and there are other things that aren’t. So I’m always trying to focus on the most productive things, even if I let some other stuff fall by the wayside. I don’t get tied up in it.
I might have a blog that’s out of date or might have some plug ins updated, but it’s not really as important as putting out the product launch where you’re going to get commission today.
David: How do you identify that? Is it something you’re doing at the start of the week and you say, here’s what I’m going to do, and I’m going to scribble it up on my whiteboard? How do you do that?
James: My whiteboard’s just like a dashboard of what’s important. I have a couple of things on there that remind me what I’m supposed to do, my core things. I don’t want to commit stuff to memory because then it is using up brain capacity. I just let it all go. I’ll have up there the core things that I’m doing in my business right now. On the other whiteboard is what the actual tasks are which have to be done. I’ll just try and get rid of them as quickly as I possibly can, just keeping up with the schedule of whatever I commit myself to.
I’ve always got something coming up and I’ll usually produce it just in time, so that it’s fresh and I can attack it once and get it off my plate. I’m not one to pre plan something for three weeks; there’s just way too much flexibility there. I’m more likely to do it three days before, just do it, complete it, finish it and get it off the production line and move on to the next thing.
It’s all about planning, and if you can systematize most things, and have a well ordered plan, your business is bound to become a great success.
Search engine optimization is definitely a great place to start when you’re getting online, getting that initial traffic, just learning the basics of the way keywords work and just online marketing. Let’s think a little bit about comparing SEO versus paid traffic.
First of all I am a huge fan of search engine optimization and I am also a fan of free traffic. I think that a lot of the methods that are out there regarding optimizing your pages and getting your sites in Google and other search engines, are really fantastic. That’s especially for people just getting started. This is a way to get traffic that is relatively high quality, for free.
The big difference between SEO and paid traffic, and when we talk about paid traffic, I’m just going to exclude from the conversation Google AdWords, that’s it’s own separate animal. The big difference is that there are huge amounts of advertising inventory out there, whereas when you’re trying to do search engine optimization you’re really limited to the keyword volume that your niche actually has. So for example, you may be going into weight loss or something, or belly fat - let’s just say that is the word you’re going to try to optimize for, is lose belly fat.
I’m sure there is a lot of search volume on belly fat but there’s not an unlimited amount of search volume for that phrase. In order to get ranked for that phrase, it’s really determined by how many people are looking for that particular phrase, that particular topic.
Where paid media starts to shine, once you have an offer you know works, once you have an affiliate offer, or you have an offer that you’ve developed yourself, your own product, and you have some idea what visitors are worth and what kind of conversion rate you’re going to get and you understand your metrics and your numbers and you’ve done some testing and some tracking, once you get to that level, you get really frustrated with your SEO campaign.
You just can’t get more than the traffic that you’ve been getting, based on the number of people who are searching for that particular phrase, then divided by all the other competitors that you have and all the other paid listings and all the other stuff.
Really, where paid traffic comes in is, it allows you to evolve your traffic generation from just whatever comes in, based on search engines being a bit more proactive. You’re going out there and you’re saying, through keyword ads, through general ads, through banner ads, through pop ups, contextual ads, though opt in email ads, through all the other places and all the other types of media you can run, you can actually take something like a belly fat offer that really, on a search engine optimization basis, is going to be limited.
You can enter this whole new world and start to get significant amounts of traffic. Let me give you a story, because I know a lot of people say, well what’s the difference here? The difference is that really good SEO specialists I know, really top guys, can generate maybe a couple of thousand visitors a day, if they’re really good, if they’re really lucky and if they’ve created the process to continually generate new content. With those two thousand visitors, they’re going to make however much they make.
But there comes a point where people want to make more. They want to grow their businesses and they want to make more money for their families and they want to take vacations and buy all the things that we want to buy, houses and cars and toys or just retirement or college fund or a savings account. We don’t have to get all ambitious with Ferraris. People want to grow their business so they can get themselves security. A lot of people find it very difficult to do that with just the traffic that they get from SEO techniques.
What paid media really allows you to do, is to go outside the people who are looking for your product and start really proactively approaching people through banner ads and so on. Probably the most common ones are banner ads, the little text ads you see that look like Google ads but they’re not Google ads, and maybe pop ups, that when you visit a site you actually get a pop up. All those things mean that you now are not limited to a few hundred or at the most a few thousand visitors a day. You can get a few thousand visitors an hour.
That is the sort of result it is possible to get with paid traffic.
You can listen to this and other podcast interviews here.
David: When you are attempting to drive traffic to a new domain, do you have systems that you’ve created inside your business for each one of the different traffic channels that you use? Do you use the SEO basics?
James: Yes. I have a team and I’ve also mapped out the system. So I can easily refer to a mind map and see each of the traffic channels and tick off if it’s been activated or not. There are some that are just on auto default. That will happen for every single article. It will depend on whether it is evergreen content or whether it’s time dependent, if it is a launch or just a general article, as to how hard I’ll push it.
David: It’s funny. It's SEO training. You mentioned something there which is something similar to what we do. How do you log what sort of traffic channels you are activating for those pages?
James: I‘ve just got a mind map that has most of the available options on it. I just look at it and see if I’ve activated one. So for example, I might look at pay per click and I could say, ok, have I got a search campaign, tick, have I got content network, yes, have I got banners and text in the content network, have I put my negative list, am I going for second tier pay per click traffic, am I going for CPV traffic? I’ll just tick the box.
I’ll use my core words and my seed article. If I have extra content, I’ll usually have pictures and audio so I can generate videos from it or I’ll have an interview or an Animoto video.
David: You mentioned before it’s almost like you’ve got some default things that are done. Then it’s like, depending on whether you want to juice it up, you tick some of those other boxes. The default things that you do, to break that down, to go really granular, what are the default things that you like to do?
James: Well an article will always be posted to my blog and then submitted to article directories. Then there will be separate blog comments linking back to the article from a blog network. There will be links purchased to link back to the post. They’re all default things. The additional ones would be forum comments, press release and say Google local submission, that sort of stuff.
David: One thing that we hadn’t dug too much into, I suppose we do it more where we are as far as selling links. We do that through text link ads. I’m interested to know, when purchasing links, what service you look at for that.
James: I pretty much use Link Vana. I also have access to two private blog networks that are not publicly available, which I’ve cultivated. I have my own one and I joint venture with someone else. I let them use mine and I use theirs.
David: You’re doing this promotion. You’ve got your default and that will just roll out. You’re one I know who looks at your stats and that sort of thing. You’re monitoring which keywords are obviously converting. You did some of that also through your pay per click initial testing as well, to decide which ones you are going to juice up further. That will depend on is it evergreen or are there any other triggers that make you go, right, I’m going to look at a forum or a press release or videos?
James: Basically when I find stuff converting I just start to zone in on it more. They’ll identify themselves, especially with the paid marketing. If it’s converting from paid marketing, it’s a really good sign. You should leverage it out with free traffic as well.
David: Very good. With all the different things we’ve talked about, and I know there are so many different factors that make up getting positions in Google, or any search engine for that matter, if you had to just say down to one thing, what the single biggest ranking factor is, what do you see, with all the testing that you’ve done, is the single biggest factor when it comes to ranking sites?
James: Probably the page title.
David: Yes. How do you do your page titles? Obviously you’ve got the keyword in there. Are there any other things that you do to get the most out of that page title?
James: You have to put it call to action if you can. It should be a selling title. You’re really going for the conversion. It’s not enough just to be ranked at the top. It doesn’t make any difference, if it doesn’t compel people, it’s useless. So that’s where I had this big epiphany and I split tested. I had two identical blogs but slightly different mechanisms. The one with the stronger call to action just blitzed it like 98 to 2 out of 100. It was so significantly different.
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When beginning to build an online business, it is imperative to focus on building an asset right away. If you choose to get out of the niche and you’ve got four or five sites, you’ve got HubPages, you’ve got Squidoo pages, you can always sell the entire package together, if it’s an actual business. If you actually build Squidoo pages with quality content on them and if you make an effort, rather than just building for their own sake, I think you’re going to be in a lot better standing with the search engines. I do think there’s a great value in having your own network to leverage off. I learned this from the market samurai review.
Let us say we chosen a website and we chosen some comparatively low hanging keywords and perhaps we chosen some tougher keywords to go for the home page. It is imperative to recognize the typical time cycle that you’d go through to start applying your SEO training technique.
SEO is obviously not an overnight business. It’s not like an AdWords account where you turn it on and you’re driving traffic. It can take time to start building up the links and building up some page rank.
We now put directory submissions as one of the first things we do.
We try and get as many directory submissions as we can because we’ve found that some of these directories that we use, even though sometimes we used to do only PR2 and above, now we’re happy to take whatever because we know a lot of these directories will evolve into higher PR ranked websites and sometimes paid websites and you get in for free.
Also, the reason I’m using directory submissions is not so much for those links, as it is the link diversity and making sure that we’re getting a good amount of inbound links with the url as the anchor text.
So we start off with directories, we do some of the article submissions as well. When we go through the step by step process, we try and basically go for, I’ve broken it up into two areas where we have what is most leverageable, what we can outsource easiest and apply that.
We throw that against the wall, see how the site sticks after a certain amount of time, then we start to identify where it is you’re strong, going back and being really targeted in your link building campaign.
The web 2.0 and using video and things like that, typically we do in our second wave of link building. The first wave is all about the articles, the directories, a little bit of social book marking, that’s more so for indexing, not so much for links. We try and do it in a little bit of an automated process rather than jumping out there and doing it manually.
We try and get through the first part, like I said, the directories, the articles and then also using some of the blog networks as well and a few other little things we do. We try and do that, I’d say, within the first month. Then usually we just let it sit for a little bit, a good few weeks, just to let everything settle, and some things are dripping out anyway. Then we go back and we start to monitor and have a look at our Google Analytics, identify where we are getting that biggest bang for buck.
Then we’re a lot more targeted and we say, right, we can start to see what keywords are getting us the right type of traffic, the keywords that are converting. Now when we start to build out some of those web 2.0 and video things which are a little more difficult to outsource and need typically a higher quality outsourcer which obviously usually commands a higher price, we can be a lot more specific in targeting what it is we want to go for.
To recap, you’ve got a good month for the first part of the campaign, let it sit for a little bit, do some analysis and then we start the second part which is, I’d say, another month. After that, you just have some slower ongoing link building processes, just to keep it looking natural and keep those links building.
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You can find a great model of link building by going to Wikipedia. If you click on Wikipedia you’ll see that nearly every single page on that has numerous links to other associated pages. That is clearly one of the most influential websites on the whole of the net. It is such a excellent way of building theme and significance and also helping users and the spiders navigate the sites.
Generally, people are very paranoid about building back links. In the forums, people have said if you build more than thirteen back links in x period of time, you will be sandboxed, or if you do this, you’re going to be thrown out of the search engines. I learned this from the different podcast interviews I've listened to.
My personal opinion with this SEO course, and obviously I don’t work for Google and I can’t prove this, is that I don’t believe that you’re ever going to be punished for building back links. This is purely because you have no control over it. If search engines were going to punish sites for building back links, then I can just head over to Rent A Coder, hire a team of people to fire nasty links at another website and rub my hands as my website climbs higher and higher as they’re all indexed. I just don’t think that is the way they work.
It’s one of those things where, otherwise you can clearly identify your competition and then target them for a particular keyword and aggressively link to them. I think there is a whole lot of factors that go into making a website and how quickly you can build links and that sort of thing.
Obviously the domain name age is a big one. Obviously Google is trying to stop people trying to game the search engines and they’re obviously trying to see what happens in nature. If you’ve got a domain name, you registered it last week and today you’ve got 30,000 links, that’s probably not so natural, unless the links are coming from particular reputable sources.
Within all of those links that we just sent to that page, if you’ve got a lot of high quality links, that would be very hard to fudge. CNN type websites and things like that can counteract it. I feel like they must have a whole series of filters and look for different ratios between certain links. That’s why, when I talk about building links, I always talk about making sure that we do it in a diverse manner.
Even though directory submissions aren’t nearly as effective as they used to be, you could get a website ranked based purely on directory submissions. I’m not using directory submissions now so much for wanting to get my website ranked for this particular keyword. If that happens as a by product for those long tail keywords, that’s fantastic. The reason I do directory submissions these days, is more to build that link diversity. You’ve got a whole lot of links coming to your website from a variety of sources, different websites hosted on different class IPs all linking back to your website.
The reason I use the directories is not so much for the varying, because when you submit to directories, typically they don’t send deep links, they’re only sending it through to your home page. So I’m using that to build up a good base of links back to my website with the url in it. I think it comes down to those ratios. You can be very aggressive on your link building, as long as you’re getting your ratios right, where you’re not just sending all deep links with a particular targeted keyword which you’re trying to rank for.
You want to look for a good number of links from varied sources saying a variety of things, linking to a variety of parts on your website, with the majority going through to your home page with the url. Especially if you’ve got an older domain name, you can be even more aggressive, because you’re obviously not trying to game the search engines if you’ve been around there for three years or something like that.
It’s caution if you’ve just bought your domain name. It’s all about getting that variety of different sources. Obviously you’re never going to get a definitive answer from the search engines. Once you’re up and running and you’re attracting natural links anyway, I think you can get away with being pretty aggressive in your link building.
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Building links is the life blood of SEO services. When you’re attracting natural links, there’s no guarantee you’re going to get the exact match anchor test that you want. But certainly when you’re engineering your own popularity, which is essentially what you’re doing when you’re building links, you really want to make sure you are getting the anchor text in the back links that you want because it has a very positive effect on the rankings.
I learned a lot of this stuff through the SEO braintrust review. I think that is one of the reasons it’s important to make sure that you get, whatever your keyword is, your primary keyword that you ultimately want to rank for. You need to go for your most aggressive keyword on your page - that is why you obviously want to get that keyword into your url. When you do, your directory submissions, or people start posting links back to your website, a lot of times people will link with the url. By linking with the url, it’s going to have the keyword there, therefore it’s telling the search engines, this particular website is about that.
I’ve heard people talk about in the past, and I think it was more so true than what I’m starting to see recently, but they were saying the reason that a domain name ranks for the keyword that is in the actual domain name, is because a lot of people are linking back to that domain name with the keyword. You’re getting the natural anchor text anyway then.
I also think, in my testing, we’re registering domain names with our keyword in there, doing very little off page optimization and just making sure that the on page is right and then having the keyword in the domain name. We’re popping up for those keywords really quickly. So I think Google must be looking at that as good. Clearly that shows you’re on topic, if the domain name has the keyword that you’re trying to rank for in it.
If you do some basic SEO and the keyword has little competition, you can rank very highly, just purely on the basis of the domain name. Of course Google will never reveal the exact equation for their algorithm, but I think there is strong evidence to suggest that they must put some inherent weighting on the actual domain name having keywords in it.
I think the other huge factor as well with SEO is, I see a lot of clients when they first come to me, they’ll pick out one or two keywords that they want to start ranking on and they really get fixated on those two keywords. What I try and do is, you’ll pick a basket of keywords you want to rank for, you’ll throw as much up against the wall as you can, see what’s sticking and where you’re already getting traction from that initial amount of keywords that you throw up against the wall and then focus in on those.
Focus in on where you’re already strong. If you notice you’re getting some traffic for a particular keyword and you’re in position number four and you’ve done a little bit of article marketing or a little bit of off page optimization, whatever method that you go for, and you’re already getting a little bit of traffic from that point. Now you want to go back, keep an eye on your Google Analytics stats. Go back, identify those pages and target in on those pages where you are already strong first.
I think a lot of people, if they get fixated on one or two or even just a few keywords, they say, SEO doesn’t work because they’re just focusing in on those three.
I manage quite a few websites for clients and I’m looking at their analytics for them and reporting back to them. My personal experience is, you really want to be trying to rank for tens, hundreds, if not thousands of different keywords. Even if you spent all your time chasing a few keywords and you managed to rank for them, it’s not enough. You need to be building up a comprehensive scope of keywords to be picking up. Just in my experience, I don’t think having one or two is enough to get you sufficient amount of traffic.
I think that’s why we work with a lot of different sites. I’ve done a lot with AdSense sites. I’ve done a lot with just e commerce sites, I’ve done a lot with sales letter sites. I think looking over everything, e commerce sites are really the ones that stand out for me. I think John Reese talked about it once, where he mentioned the idea that the more pages you’ve got out there in the search engines, it’s like more tickets in the lottery.
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When I completed school, I actually took out a loan and as an alternative of going to university, I went and did one of those week end share trading courses, where in a crash course, you learn how to trade the stock market in a week end and on Monday hopefully you’ll make a million dollars. That was the plan. That was at least the way they sold it.
I made these podcast interviews and before that I signed up for that and went through the course and did a little bit of trading. It was sort of late in the internet boom, early 2000, just as everything was still running up before the big tech crash.
I made some money there, but I started to comprehend that to make money, especially in the stock market, you do need a trading float. You need a little bit of capital and here I was already $5,000 in the hole. You can’t let that happen.
A friend and I who I met at this particular course, identified a need for an education product to do with some software, stock market software. People were using this software, but didn’t fully understand how to get the most out of it. We put together a home study course on that. It was really successful from the early days, except when I got it online, I realized it’s all well and good to put your website up there, but a website isn’t worth the domain name it’s hosted on, unless you’re getting traffic to it.
I got interested in a little bit of classic direct mail stuff, Jay Abrahams, Dan Kennedy that sort of thing. I learned a little bit about the classic sales letter writing, long form sales letter writing. That branched over – I’ve always been interested in technology and gadgets and things like that. The internet was springing up. I got interested in internet marketing, how do you market on the web. That evolved. I started again with the long form sales letters online and then I started to say, how can I get more traffic to the websites? That’s what led into a pretty in depth study as far as the SEO was concerned.
In the early days, there wasn’t a lot of material out there that you could find out about on page and off page optimization. It was a little more trial and error.
When you think just how much information there is now, in such a short period of time, how much it has grown, it is amazing. It almost feels as if it happened overnight. In one way it can be bad because there is so much information, you don’t know where to start. There are still a lot of different myths and misnomers out there, about what is good SEO and how do you get a website ranked and that sort of thing. At least now, if you find one or two people to follow and watch what it is they do, and do your own testing, it’s a lot easier than when I first started out, that’s for sure.
So I started up my trading system and as a by product, I became interested in internet marketing. I learned to write the traditional long sales letter of which we’ve all seen many.
Then I became interested in learning how to drive targeted traffic to those sales letters and as a result I started to explore SEO in more depth.
I think one of the first programs I really started getting interested in, there’s a guy called Ken Evoy who is behind a program called SiteSell. His first book Make Your Site Sell was one of the first ones that I read. It was all about the art of the pre sale and putting really good content out there, almost having SEO happen naturally. When you do put good content out there, SEO does happen naturally. People link to it and that sort of thing.
What we try and do now is use our SEO techniques to jumpstart and get us up to a point where we reach that critical mass and then hopefully the natural SEO starts to take over.
So you want to get into Internet marketing eh? Before we go to the SBI review, what are the stuff you need to know beforehand? Well, in the most layman of terms, basically all you need is a product or service and a website from which to sell it from. The marketing part comes in later, and you can worry about that as soon as you've got the first two steps down pat.
For the first part, the product or service you will be selling, that is all entirely up to you. It can be an ebook, a special program or a service. The subject? Anything you feel you are an expert in. The good thing about Internet marketing is that you can sell whatever you want. A sonic driven mosquito repellant? No problem. A how to guide on building a personal computer from scratch? Good one! It all depends on what you know really.
Now this brings us to the second part. Building the website. If you are an adept IT individual, then you have no problem. But what if you are not? How does one make a website? Well, creating a website can be simple or complicated. The simple way will result in simple sites that reek of the amateur stench, while the complicated way results in better looking sites. Now, if you check out the SBI review, you will discover a simple way to make professional looking sites. Sounds great? It sure is.
What is Site Build It all about anyway? Well, it's an easy way to create websites, that much is established but why use it? Because it was developed by one of the leading Internet marketers today. Ken Evoy knows his stuff so you better listen. But don't take my word for it, you can check out the Site Build review to find out how awesome the product is. What's more, the review is from the unbiased and honest perspective of another successful Internet marketer. See the trend here? Successful Internet marketers and Site BUild It go hand in hand.
So if you feel you have what it takes to be a successful Internet marketer, go ahead and get your feet wet. You can do it the easy way or the hard way. The easy way is preferred, especially if it churns out amazing results. So before you start down the road to success, go ahead and watch the Site Build It review (or SBI review as I like to call it) and learn more about the product that has launched many a successful career.
Looking back over my career, if I knew then what I know now, there are certain key leverage points which aided my development and growth.
I want to talk about some of the things that helped me be successful first, and then I’ll talk about one of those leverage points more specifically. My ability to hustle with Melbourne SEO Services, my ability to go out and make things happen, my ability to work harder, work longer, work faster, be more creative, think more deeply, read more, all of those things have given me an incredible edge that most people don’t have, because I’m willing to work harder, I’m willing to do more. If it means me putting in twenty-four hour days to get what it is that I want, I will do that. I’m committed to the outcome, I’m not committed to what’s going on now. I learned this through the selling and buying websites.
The focus is to get through today so that we can get to tomorrow. Hustle is one of the missing ingredients in many entrepreneurs. They’re unwilling to do the hard work, particularly in internet marketing today, and particularly in a lot of internet based businesses.
People hear all these stories of people who make money in their underwear or they make money while they’re cruising around the world on their yacht or whatever. Most of those stories are either a) untrue or b) they don’t tell the true story of how many people spent days weeks, months, years toiling away to make that overnight success happen.
When my book sold out in eight hours, people said, oh my, you’re like an overnight success. I said, yes, it only took me twenty years to be an overnight success. It took me twenty years of doing the right things and focusing again and again.
That said, the things that for me have been the real turning points in my career personally, have occurred once I started making high level joint ventures with people, other people who had solid followings who could endorse me and who would endorse me.
They are people like Chris Howard, Harv Ecker, Mark Victor Hansen, Tony Robbins, all these kind of people who I’ve been able to work with. That whole process took my business to a new level. Now I was interacting with massive audiences and much more credible people who were endorsing me.
But I didn’t start with those people. They weren’t my first JVs. My first joint ventures were with people who were not necessarily the best known people. Some of the first people I joint ventured with only had two hundred people on their list but the two hundred people on their list were dedicated to them. They were their close friends, they were their close business associates, they were people who had great trust. They learned to make money as an affiliate and I got the benefit of connecting with an audience who came to me already with deep trust. Developing powerful joint ventures were very important to me.
Testimonials can be used as very valuable online marketing tools. They have been proven to increase sales. I learned this through the podcast interviews I've listened to. It’s interesting because testimonials are undergoing a great change in the United States right now. The Federal Trade Commission has come down really hard on testimonials, so everybody is backing away from testimonials here right now. If there is any sort of financial claim, like search engine optimization strategies, or any sorts of claims about anything pretty much, if you can’t demonstrate it, the fines are tremendous right now. So people are backing away from testimonials.
Having said that, if you have legitimate testimonials you can use, from this SEO company, particularly in Australia where the rules might be slightly different, testimonials integrated every step of the way increase sales. Social proof, from the article marketing automation review, which is what a testimonial is, social proof is a psychological premise that basically is best described as monkey see, monkey do.
The seminal research around social proof was done when they had a person in New York City stand on a street and stare up at a spot on a building. Pretty soon three or four people were looking up at the spot and when those people stopped and looked, then a dozen people were. When a dozen people were, a hundred people were and shortly after that, they had a giant crowd that was blocking up the street, looking up to see what was up on the building. The original person had gone.
People do what they see other people doing. Very few people want to be a pioneer. They don’t want to be the first ones to break new territory. What they used to say in the United States was, nobody wants to be a pioneer because you can always tell who they are because they have arrows in their back. That was back from when we were settling the West here, and the native Americans shot the pioneers with their arrows.
That’s sort of the same thing in business. Nobody wants to be the first one to go out and break the ground and yet entrepreneurs do it all the time and they’re successful. From a consumer standpoint, no one wants to be that first person, to be the first one to try whatever the product or service is.
So what happens is, when they see a group of people trying it and those people are happy and excited, then they’re much more likely to try it. Their resistance goes down, their natural inclination to question goes away and they’re much more likely then to engage and do whatever it is you’re asking them to do. Social proof of testimonials is an incredibly powerful tool. It’s highly persuasive and I strongly recommend you use them as much as you can because they will encourage people to do whatever it is you’re asking.
Here’s what’s interesting with social media. You get people who are retweeting or talking about you on Facebook or creating response videos or all these kind of things and they’re doing it organically. They’re providing social proof to people who trust and follow them without you asking them to do it or without it seeming contrived, as often testimonials do. Most people don’t know how to give a good testimonial and most people who are asking for testimonials don’t know how to direct a good testimonial.
What ends up happening is they end up sounding like one of those hucksters on the street or on television and you don’t come up with really good genuine heartfelt testimonials that move people. What happens with social media often is, whatever people say extemporaneously is often very heartfelt, truthful, transparent and full of emotion. Those are the ones that convert best.
The most important part of any sales process is the actual offer, and the opportunity to make a sale. The point of it all is obviously to convert that person at the other end. Let us consider how you persuade someone to buy.
Here is the thing that people need to remember. I got this from the podcast interviews I listened to. Only polarized people buy things. Only polarized people buy things and you have to be seen to sell. So if you’re not taking a stand, the only thing that happens when you ride the fence, and you sit on the rail, and you try and balance that way all the time, and you never take a side, the only thing that happens is you get splinters. Nothing else happens, nothing good happens from that. You can’t please everyone all the time.
It’s better to please a hungry crowd of people who agree with you than it is to try and appease a crowd who couldn’t care less. That is what I got from the SEO techniques. That’s what polarization is all about.
Polarization is taking a stand and saying, this is who I am, this is what I’m about, this is what I believe. That is what the SEO training shows you. If you think about that, and it doesn’t mean you have to be a jerk, it doesn’t mean you have to be mean, it doesn’t mean you have to be any of those things, but it means you have to be transparent and relevant and say the things that people who could potentially buy your products or services can come down off that fence and agree with you on.
You’ve got to knock them off the fence to get them to buy. I learned this from these SEO training dvds. So when I’m looking at constructing an offer or even a persona, I’m looking at, how do I go about creating that polarization? The next thing I’m looking for is, what does it take to get these people to say yes to something? So we constantly look at the psychology of consumption. There was a recent research study done that said that if you get people just to try something briefly, they’re much more likely to consume it longer term than they are if they don’t try it at all.
Even things like bitter medicine and those kind of things, if they try it and they have an immediate result from it, then they’re much more likely to engage it much longer than they are if they don’t try it or if they don’t have an immediate result. So whatever we can do to give people an immediate result, listen to this, do this thing, see what’s going to happen as a result of doing it and I’m going to teach you thirty more strategies when you buy the product. This gives people that sort of immediacy and that causes them to say yes more often.
Things like giving to receive, the law of reciprocation still works. If you give people something in advance, they’re much more likely to engage with you. This is one of the values of social
media. Why we create so much video on blog posts is because we’re
preemptively giving, giving, giving and as a result, what we’re getting is people who are saying, this person is giving me so much, I need to do something in return and so they do.
In the end they are much more likely to buy the product or service you are offering, because you have already given them something.
If you’re working with a new client who doesn’t have any following online, it is important to consider how you go about starting to build up a presence so that you can successfully sell a product or service.
As social media proliferates, obviously there is more and more good information out there. I learned this through the podcast interviews I listened to. So you start off with building a powerful persona. You have to develop a person worth hearing and worth watching. I’m fairly fortunate, I have written books and I speak to about 100,000 people a year around the world, so there are a fair amount of people who follow me. If you learn SEO step by step you can do the same thing.
But having said that, my first book, when I first started this business, I had no clients either and there are now a lot of people getting into this business and are building a following. If you get a SEO quote, you can do the same thing too. The thing to remember when you are getting into this business, there are two camps in this. There’s my camp which is the right one and there’s the other camp. The other camp says numbers of following matters because social media is a numbers game. That’s a very old school mentality.
That’s the sort of antiquated television sales mentality of listen, we have a million viewers. I learned this through the Traffic Evolution Review. Well a million viewers don’t mean anything. You’ve got Ashton Kutcher, these celebrities who have a million viewers, Oprah who has a million following her on Twitter and it really has no impact. People don’t pay attention, there is no mind share.
What really matters is not the number of followers, it’s the number of followers who interact with you and who do something as a result of their engagement with you. So they retweet you, they actually have an ongoing conversation with you, they recommend what you recommend, they see you as an aggregator for information out there.
When I have a new client, we start out by building a persona for them. We start out by saying, ok, what makes you compelling and interesting? What can we do, how do you need to show up all of the time in order to be that consistent, personal brand that people have to see, in order to connect with you.
Social media is in many ways a one on one game. You’re building a personal brand because it has a voice. Even if you’re the voice of a large company, that voice has to be consistent, it has to be specific and it has to be planned. Specific, consistent and planned is a very big important point.
You start out by developing a persona, something that people would be interested in listening to and hearing from. It doesn’t matter what your audience is. I’m not saying you have to go out and be over the top and crazy and all those things, but what I am saying is, you have to be very consistent about it.
You have to be whoever your consumer expects to see in your position. They’re looking for the most knowledgeable, interesting expert they can find and that’s the person they’re going to follow. It’s being consistent, it’s creating this persona and then it’s putting out that killer information, the category killer information, the information that’s going to bowl people over, get them very interested in what you have to say and coming back for more. You have to do that too.
The interesting thing is, this does not happen overnight. When it does, it’s a fluke, it’s a mistake. People build trust over time, rarely do they build trust overnight. You have to provide them with enough information that’s compelling, that brings them back, so that they have time to build trust with you, so that they then can engage in the conversation, so they can then buy from you.
David: I like the way you have a system and a process and a systematic way you approach promoting a new site. You can do this by getting backlinks to your website. I think that is the real key. It’s all about creating that system and that feeds to your out sources to get really big results. To get results you want to break down what it is your doing.
There is no exact method for getting a website ranked. That is what I learned through these SEO training DVDs. There are some good fundamentals that you need to follow and the individual needs to find a plan and system that works for them and then just start applying that in a systemized process.
I know you really do help people go after (by the bounce rate tips), when you’re starting out you might not go for a really competitive niche. I’m thinking from your own stuff, what you do, where do you go? Do you go after big niches, or do you go after little niches? Check your SEO guide.
Bob: I like going for niches that have got a sense of vertical integration, where there is a huge traffic reward for the most competitive keywords in that niche, but where I’ve got to weigh into the niche. I’ll always start small. You’ve got to get a foothold, create a little crevice for yourself on the cliff face. Once you’ve got a foothold, then you can start building from there.
It’s much easier to start ranking for a competitive keyword within your niche if you’ve already got some semblance of authority within that niche. But if you just suddenly start going after a very competitive keyword from brand new, with no authority in your favour, then you’re really making it very hard for yourself.
The other thing which we haven’t talked about yet, is the reason why you’re doing this. What is the reason why you’re trying to rank at all? Most people have commercial outcomes in mind. But not everyone has a commercial outcome in mind. They might be doing it for charity, for ranking a charity site or for just building an organic community because they’re passionate about that community without any intention to make money from that community. So your outcome may also need to be considered as you’re going through this process.
Many people are looking for a commercial outcome, they’re looking to make money from this activity. So you want to be confident that as you’re beginning your initial niche testing, that the traffic you generate actually has a commercial outcome in mind, it will actually buy something. If you can’t get any proof or evidence of that, then why would you spend all this time doing all this ranking work, if ultimately the traffic you’re going to get isn’t actually going to help you achieve your outcome?
David: I think you hit the nail on the head there. A lot of people don’t do that first. I think before you do go through the stages of building this network, you’re right, you need to ask why am I doing this? We’re not building things just for the sake of getting rankings and getting a particular keyword.
You really do need to be clear on the reason you’re doing it. Be it a commercial outcome or for whatever reason, just putting up these pages with no backend or no idea of monetization or anything like that, what’s the point? There is no point. You really need to have that clear focus before you start.
David: I’m thinking about the three phases that go into promoting a new site. These are first getting initial attention, then link building activities and finally phase 3 is to cherry pick authority sites where you can engineer a link, simply for the purpose of getting a high authority back link.
You’re obviously using your Market Samurai or the article marketing automation review
or however you’re checking the rankings of your site and you’re monitoring as you’re going. Once you reach something with your SEO company, you’re going for a particular keyword and you start ranking for that, do you continue sending links to it for building up the domain name? Or do you say, right now I should start focusing on these other keywords when you learn seo step by step, that I’m trying to get ranking, perhaps for the primary keyword in your domain name which might be slightly more aggressive, rather than some of your longer tail more category type keywords?
Bob: Your main keywords, your theme keyword which is your most important keyword, and your category keywords, you’re going to want to do link building on an ongoing basis. Ranking, SERT ranking, is like fitness. If you stop doing it, you lose it.
So you need to continuously acquire links to those parts of your site that are optimized for your most important, high traffic keywords. I think the article strategy is good; have one or two a month written and continuously submit those to directories, so you are continuously acquiring links from blog posts and submissions over the longer term.
For your longer tail keywords, which have much lower competition basis, you might be able to get away with just doing Traffic Bug and one or two article submissions. You might not have to do the manual link building.
David: Perfect. That sounds like a very solid strategy. Obviously there are quite a few different steps here and for someone just starting out. I think they really do need to do this themselves. That way they can understand each step of the way. I’m interested to get your thoughts on outsourcing this, because I know you guys do a lot of testing in the lab and a lot of different things. How does outsourcing play a role in implementing a lot of this?
Bob: Some of the stuff can be outsourced. Now that a lot of it has been coded into Market Samurai, if you train someone to use Market Samurai effectively you can do this. Good quality link building is actually a very hard thing to outsource. There’s no grey in link building. You either get it right ort you get it wrong. If you make a comment on a forum or a blog post and you get the anchor text slightly wrong or you get the link url slightly wrong, then any value that that may have created has been lost.
So I’ve found it very difficult to outsource the high value link building. The low value stuff, yes that can be outsourced, or making a submission to Traffic Bug or having an article written and submitting it to these various automated services is relatively straightforward.
David: When beginning to promote a new site, after some keyword research and establishing the blog itself, your main site, your main ranking vehicle, start to build a network of related sites on other domains, preferably on other authority domains which link back to that site to that blog. Creating a series of Web 2.0 sites where you can generate an authority link from that site back to your blog but you also have the potential for that Web 2.0 page to rank for the keyword in its own right. SEO services can do this for you as well.
Some of the Web 2.0 properties that you identify as really strong, I know are Squidoo and Hub Pages. They’ve been around for a long time. Are there any new ones that you’re seeing coming through the ranks that might have the same sort of strength? I know Squidoo has been around for ages, but are there any other ones that you could identify?
Bob: Well you can’t go wrong with EzineArticles of course. That’s been around for a long time. But you want that because what generally happens with these Web 2.0 properties is that they get some initial Google love early in their life, then for whatever reason, the spammers get on these platforms and Google starts to reassess the ranking value of these pages. Then they go through a bit of a down period where their ranking in the search is reassessed.
But then if they apply good management practices on these pages as Squidoo and Hub Pages have done, then eventually they come through that period of Google attention and their pages start to recover in the search engines again.
This has definitely happened for EzineArticles which has a human moderation practice and Squidoo and Hub Pages have both gone through that cycle as well. So they are very powerful domains and they have survived and been around for a long time. So EzineArticles is definitely the big daddy if you’re doing articles submissions. Scribd is very powerful. They have no follow links; I don’t know what your position is on no follow links but that seems to be weakening as a limit in terms of the value of that link. I quite like Scribd.
David: With the no follow links, just to add a point on that. There is a little bit of confusion as to whether no follow links have now been dropped by Google or if they’re still there. I still use it for standard practice as far as directing the page rank, funneling the page rank on my site to the appropriate site. So I’ll no follow my contact us page and different pages I’m not really looking at ranking.
But I won’t not post something because it has a no follow link. I think all links have value. I know some other search engines don’t necessarily look at the no follow thing. It’s more of a Google thing. What Bing or Yahoo does I don’t know, and those things change over time. I think every link has value. If Scribd is a really strong Web 2.0 site, then I think the more links the better.
Bob: Yes. I certainly agree with that. You might want to reconsider your practice of page rank sculpting using no follow. Google has reassessed their practice for that. What they’re doing now, if you use a no follow tag on a link the page rank that would normally have been attributed to that link gets lost. It just doesn’t get sent, it gets basically subtracted.
Let me give you an example. Let’s say you have a page with five links on it and four of the links have no follow tags. Let’s say that was a page rank five. Normally, in terms of the page rank algorithm, each link would have received the equivalent of a PR1 juice. That’s how page rank works. If you use no follow tags on four of those links then effectively the one link that is a follow doesn’t get all the PR juice, it just gets the one juice and the other PR4 juice gets lost.
David: I’ll have to do some testing on that. I haven’t seen that yet, but then again I tested this many years ago and I know rules do change. I’ll jump in and give it another test.
Bob: There’s another Matt Cutts post on this which actually explains this very carefully. That’s how Google is handling the use of no follow tags now. So page rank sculpting using no follow tags is no longer really an effective strategy.
David: We’ll jump straight into it. My first question is to find out, if you are to launch a new site, what’s the process that you go through? Do you have stages, or how do you systemize it, what is the plan is that you use?
Hopefully we’ll draw some parallels to the way the SEO method (search engine optimization strategies) works. I know a lot of what you do is based in those good solid fundamentals for SEO. I’m sure our plans will be quite similar. You’ve got a new site – what do you do?
Bob: Well I mean that’s a very big question you’re asking – a promotion plan for a new site. I learned this through the SEO training DVDs. There are so many different focuses for what that new site might be targeted towards. I assume you want me to make reference to what I represent, which is the Thirty Day Challenge.
For that, we’re about testing niches. They are the same way with this SEO training course. We teach people how to get started on the internet, so how to break into a brand new niche for the first time. That’s what we teach. Why don’t we talk about it in relation to that and if you’ve got some other niche targeting areas you want to talk about, then perhaps I can offer my opinion about that.
David: Yes, that sounds good. Let’s really try and focus it in to the actual promotion side of things. I’m really interested to hear the nuts and bolts of the actual promotion side of things.
Bob: Yes indeed. Although it would be remiss of me not to actually make some mention of keyword and market research. Because if you don’t have that under control, if you don’t absolutely know the dynamics of the niche or market that you’re entering into, then your promotion strategies could be way off the ball. If you’re going to be targeting a very competitive niche, then you need to apply a different marketing strategy, or certainly a more aggressive marketing promotion strategy than if you’re targeting a rather non-competitive niche.
We use Market Samurai to assist in getting your head around the dynamics of your niche or market. This is so you know the level of competition you’re going to be facing but also the quality of competition you’re going to be facing.
I guess right from the outset, the type of website that you develop may or may not assist you in your ultimate promotion. We recommend blogs, and specifically we recommend WordPress blogs. We believe across the breadth of functionality that you need, but also in terms of the ease of installation, ease of maintenance and ease of publishing, WordPress blog represents the most efficient website structure to get something on line. You can target it to a set of key niche words and the blog site structure, the website structure assists you ultimately in your promotion.
So having the right website, or having a website system that assists you in your promotion can benefit you in terms of your long term promotion for your site.
David: Do you have any plug ins for WordPress that you definitely think of as must haves? Obviously there is All In One SEO which my guys are familiar with. Are there any others which you think are helpful?
Bob: We do. We have tried to make this easier for our community by utilizing a service called WordPress Direct which makes it very easy for people to install a WordPress blog with all the plug ins that we suggest. The main thing about a WordPress blog though of course, is setting up the naming structure of the blog correctly, so that the category and the host’s keyword is relevant, so you are actually getting your keywords into your urls or your pages.
Properly setting up the pinging function of the blog, so that every time you make a new post, all of the various search engines are pinged by the blog itself, and you attract the spiders to your new content are also critical.
Things like the All In One SEO plug in is very useful. There is a fantastic Google Analytics plug in to make it very easy to track what’s going on with your blog. We use a plug in called Pretty Link which makes it easy to create masked and tracked redirection urls, to promote affiliate products or whatever off your domain. We try and simplify that by using WordPress Direct. We have our community use WordPress Direct to make that very easy.
When you are trying to rank a site, there are several levels to go through.
First, when you have some content, you need to get the thing indexed and build up some initial links using social book marking and RSS submissions. You then move into leveraged link
I think Web 2.0 is the thing that you logically pursue probably shortly after that leveraged stuff. I wouldn’t call it level three, maybe level two and a half.
There is a level three, but there is no panacea for level three. I learned this from the podcast interviews I listened to. Level three is just finding good quality places to get links back from. That’s when you or someone you’re paying is going out there and finding links manually, building rank links from high quality sites.
For me personally it doesn’t make a lot of sense, like the SEO guide. From a time perspective, I know there are companies out there that do it. I would much prefer to own my own assets and build them up over time and then point those assets at my own sites. The fundamental of business strategy is the word control. You need to be able to control your destiny and be able to influence things. To the degree that you are reliant on getting links from those other sources, in some way you have less control.
Ultimately you should be trying to build up your own assets so that you can influence the results and get the results that you want. Then get a SEO quote.
Level three is, what I tell people, is going to be manually getting links from people. Level four is really moving to the next level moving to build up your own assets. Level four would include building your own network.
There is no level five. I mean you becoming the platform that people are getting links from. You, being the next Wikipedia or something like that, you being the next Web 2.0 site, potentially.
There are many different strategies you use going from the initial, let’s get it indexed to some leveraged methods and then also we use Web 2.0 and the next level up, going out searching for those really good quality links through some sort of content exchange or providing articles to have published. The next level obviously, level four is building the network and really owning those links. For what it is that we do, there’s quite a bit of work there. Some of it we outsource and some we keep in house.
We have our network of blog sites. To be honest we don’t use them for ourselves. It’s our testing bed, our laboratory so that we can test strategies just for the development of our own SEO product. We know that whatever we’re doing is working, or when we hear of something, we can test that it works. The reality is that for our own business, we do very little SEO. It’s the cobbler’s son with no shoes sort of thing. It’s quite funny.
For us we do very little of that. What it boils down to is a discussion between SEO and business. I think the fundamental question to ask is, most people are asking what is the minimum I can do to get the biggest impact in my life, and while it’s a good question to ask from a technical perspective, it’s a bad mentality to have. It’s a much better mindset to say, how can I serve the maximum amount of people?
What we say is, creating content should be part of every single business regardless of what your strategy is. Creating content, having conversation, creating fantastic value, serving as many people as you can through the value that you’re delivering through blog posts, through videos, through audios, through whatever form it takes, through software, put as much value out there as possible.
Now you’re going to put that content out there anyway. So why not put that content out there in the most leveraged optimized way possible? If you just put that content out on your own website and you don’t link to it and no one ever finds it, you’re not creating value for people. Value is created when people see the stuff that you’re putting out there.
Look at everything you do and make sure if you’re going to do the work once, with a little bit of extra work you can receive a hundred times the reward, particularly if you’re disciplined about doing it with every single piece of content that you put out there.
The aim of the game when starting an online campaign is how many pages can I create rather than really sculpt these pages and have that page rank funneled. Leslie Rohde talks about when you create a page, you’re creating a page rank out of nothing. A brand new page with no links to it has some PR value in it, and it is between zero and one, but there is some value there. What you want to do is just all about the numbers of those pages to some degree.
I think really the best way to think about page rank, and Google is on the record for saying that their published algorithm for page rank is really different now, it’s changed. I learned this from the podcast interviews I listened to. Even when Matt Cutts joined, he said it was very different to what the published patented algorithm was.
But aside from that and the search engine optimization strategies, the original idea really was that page rank was the probability that a random guy surfing the web would land on your web page. So if you had more content out there, it does makes sense if you link it well and you have external links to those pages, you have a higher probability of stumbling on the page if there are more pages out there.
Obviously if there are more keywords, which you can get from this SEO company, out there you can potentially rank for as well.
Once we start to create some of these pages and we’re testing it, we do a little bit of on page stuff and then start on our off page campaign.
The first challenge when you have some content is to get the thing indexed and build up some initial links to that content so that content gets discovered ideally with those keywords in the links linking to your web page. That makes a difference. So the first thing is using social book marking, RSS submission whether or not you do it manually. We use Traffic Bug.
That is essentially to build that first set of links. Each of those links is relatively low value. At that stage of the process, it’s about getting indexed, getting relevant links for a bunch of low competition pages. Now that might be enough to see some good rankings based on those initial set of low ranking links that you’re building into your content. But that is certainly where I would start, because it’s so easy and it has become part of our publishing process and that’s why we’ve built it into our product Market Samurai.
After you’ve published your blog, you just click a button and use the keyword and write some description about what your content’s about and you’ve got a couple of hundred links being built over time from social book marks and site directories and RSS submissions. It’s quite low value but it’s enough to kick start the process.
A good way to test the market when starting an online campaign is via AdSense, or by throwing up a site to SEO some keywords. The seo techniques works the same way. It seems the first place you start is your keyword. Market research is the first step and then keyword research flows on from that. There is a definite process to go through for identifying what sort of keywords to go after.
The same principles apply for AdWords and SEO. So why not get a SEO quote. There are a number of things I look for in a keyword and most people make all these mistakes. There are three golden rules you need to get right when picking a keyword. The first is you need to pick keywords for traffic and while it seems really obvious, most people who just randomly pick a keyword will just have such abysmally small amounts of traffic around them to not even be worth your time to do anything about it unless you want to do this across tens of thousands of keywords.
So finding a keyword with traffic is really important. Until about twelve months ago, there was no good way to actually find out how much traffic a keyword had because Google kept all that information to itself. We had to use other services which really only extrapolated a small subset of that data, so until recently we had very poor data. Now we can find those keywords which have traffic.
After you’ve found the keywords that have the traffic, and this applies as much to AdWords as SEO, you need to pick off a keyword that has an acceptably low level of competition that you can actually realistically compete. The number one mistake most people make is they pick a keyword that is just too tough for them. If it’s starting out from scratch with no page rank, no links, then it’s not to say you can’t get any results but you are limited in the result you can get in a small window of time. You need to make sure that when you’re going after a keyword that you can effectively compete for that keyword.
Otherwise, and I think Guru Bob talks about this a lot, it takes exactly the same amount of work to succeed as it does to fail. For all this hard work, all this optimization, all this link building, if you pick the wrong keyword, and it’s just too hard for you, then you’ve lost. So you need traffic and you need low enough levels of competition.
The third thing you need to check is the commercial value of the keyword. This is something that really blows my mind and no one really talks about. I can speak from personal experience. This is a really valid way to look at the market. You need to make sure that the keyword that you’re picking has commercial value, that there is evidence of people selling something, hopefully something similar to what you’re planning to sell.
You want to see evidence of people spending money in that market, particularly advertisers in that market. You need to make sure that people who are advertising are taking a look at their business models and making sure that there is a long term business model in it for you if you’re going to go into to a market.
There are ways of measuring that and people seem to pick keywords that they’re ordering first by how much traffic they have or how little competition they have, but very few people do the obvious thing and just say I want to pick the keyword that’s going to put the most amount of money into my pocket in the shortest amount of time. For me that commercial value is really important, and there is a range of cool ways that you can measure that these days.
I think the big opportunity with social media at the moment is to go on foursquare. If you go locally, obviously people are talking about if you go into or near a restaurant or near a store, it will send a text to your phone or a tweet whatever you want to have it come to your phone and say, hey, you can have 10% off if you come in right now and order this, or there’s a free appetizer available. If you think about Minority Report, that movie with Tom Cruise, that’s the deal where they’re reading out that RO5 tag that he removed from the shirt that said, ‘Hey Tom, welcome back. We’ve got a pants on special that matches that shirt.’ That movie was cool because they only used things that were already in the making that actually could be possible. Everything they used in that movie actually had to be presently possible to do.
Looking one step beyond foursquare, that's the SEO guide, I think that people might be missing the boat or they’re not talking about yet is that actually everything in the future is going to be rated. The question is how do you get buy end from your customer to rate something? The best way to do it is to make it as easy as possible. So if you use technology like a foursquare to when you’re leaving that standard hotel in Sydney Australia, you’re asked, ‘Did you stay at that hotel? Do you mind answering these three questions and it will take forty-five seconds.’ If you had a company do it, they’re going to ask you fifty questions and it’s going to take you ten minutes and you’re not going to do it. But you can utilize that technology and once you leave it’s actually in your hand held device to actually rate that hotel quickly. That’s where I think some of that technology can be better enabled.
The one thing that really excites me, I talk about eReaders. I learned about this through these podcast interviews. So you think about the Kindle and the iPad. Some people say, why do you talk about that? It’s not social in nature. I say, these things are hugely social in nature down the line. When you and I went to school, we walked into a used bookstore and hoped that the person in front of us was half way smart and highlighted and took notes in that text book. But now if you have those e readers and those iPads, you can actually grab all the notes and all the highlights from the A+ students’ notes and highlights. So from an educational standpoint that is huge. The author can actually say, give me that data because I’m rewriting the revised version of that textbook. So I can see, well, this is where people got hung up, this is where people love it, so now I’m going to rewrite this based on this data that is coming back.
The other thing about e readers and also iPads or tablets or whatever you want to call them, a book didn’t historically have that product placement capability like a thirty minute sit com. We see product placement in movies and TV shows now. You can now have that in books and it won’t be intrusive because it is up to the reader whether they want that. But it is another revenue stream for the publishers and authors.
If I’m going to write about an Italian restaurant in Sydney and I don’t know the area very well, I can go to this new repository that says, here are fifteen Italian restaurants. You can pull a specific name of a restaurant and put it in your book. You might get paid for that brand awareness from that restaurant. But then the beauty is that the reader, if they want to, they can roll over that in the e reader and it can actually show them an image of that restaurant. If they want to see the menu, if they want to click through, they can. It’s not a zero sum game, it will be up to the reader if they want to do that or if they want to picture it in their mind when they read. It’s all up to them, so it is freedom of choice. There are some exciting things that are happening on the e reader side as well.
I think just that whole idea, especially getting clients to rate things, it’s almost like an instant testimonial and testimonials are extremely important for driving marketing. This is a great use of social media.
The power of social media should never be underestimated. Sometimes it’s good to look at a physical product. If you see a ton of people complaining about, saying this thing always breaks off if it gets over 80 degrees, that’s easy to resolve. You just go down to product services and say, look, we’ve got two hundred people on different areas of the web, blogs, Twitter, Facebook, even someone posted on Wikipedia, that this thing has fail points at 80 degrees and it seems to break off when it gets warm. So you can give that to your product development team and get that fixed. You can learn this and more from these podcast interviews.
Marketers’ jobs change to where they’re going to sit very close, instead of sitting there trying to figure out the greatest messaging of all time, they’re going to sit closely with the product development team to quickly get to these problems because that’s going to be a beautiful thing for the consumer as well.
The best type of marketing there is, is just having a really good product and then hopefully using the internet to get that word out. Get the word out about these SEO techniques. I suppose that leads into that idea of the soft sell. Obviously there is a big faux pas that a lot of people make in the social media space which is very much, the idea that people go wrong, businesses go wrong because they go for this really hard sell.
Sometimes with the soft sell, after hopefully listening, interacting and reacting, you’re already in a relationship with these folks. So that soft sell can be easy. Jet Blue is a good example where it pulls a thirty minute segment, just all the different tweets. It showed thirty minutes and it didn’t touch every piece of that business. A gentleman during that thirty minutes tweeted, ‘Hey, is Jet Blue still running that all you can eat special?’ That’s the push. All they need to do is say, ‘Hey, look we’re still running that special. You’ve got two more days to do it. Here’s the link and how you do it. Any questions let us know.’ So that’s a good prime example, one that I just came across recently to where it is that soft push to get those folks to get over the line.
But also too you can look for other stuff like that, if you go back to listening, sometimes a lot of what’s being said is questions about, ‘Hey, has anyone tried this line? Is it any good?’ Then you can jump in and reply to that quickly because they do want to hear from the company. You just have to make sure you’re not shouting that message. If you reply to that, you can put ‘Yes it’s good’ with the wink, and then say, ‘But don’t take our word for it, here’s a listing for all the current reviews for that specific service or product you’re wondering about.’
I think the hardest thing for companies is to work out what’s the ROI going to be? When we compare it to things like SEO and pay per click where you’re driving traffic to a specific landing page with a very clear outcome or objective you’re trying to achieve, it is very easy to measure those analytics and that conversion rate. With social media it feels a little more like a branding exercise. People always talk about, when branding, it’s just like the people with the deepest pockets win.
Some pieces of social media you can measure hard and fast like we’ve always traditionally done. Some of examples of that are Mininovo, their achievable cost savings, was a 20% reduction in call centre activities, as customers go to their community website for answers. If you look at Burger King’s Whopper sacrifice Facebook program, their program was less than $50,000 yet they received 32,000,000 media impressions which roughly amounts to $400,000 return, so $50,000 you get $400,000 out of that. Dell computers sold $3,000,000 worth of computers on Twitter.
Social media can be used to great effect by smart and progressive companies.
There are examples of companies who have embraced the concept of social media. If you’re a small business, if you look at Vaynerchuck, he’s interesting because he is a family wine business. He took it from $4,000,000 to $50,000,000 primarily just using social media. Gary has spun off and now does his own Vayner media company where he actually consults on how to do these things, like selling and buying websites. But he took it mainly from $4,000,000 to $50,000,000 using what was called Wine TV instead of just developing videos. He’s a great character and has a great sense of what wine should be, he’s not the usual boring wine expert. So he’ll get out there and eat dirt and show you why he ate dirt while he was growing up so he could develop his palate.
What’s most intriguing for Gary is that he understands what’s called the second layer of selling. This SEO company can teach you about selling too. The videos themselves don’t sell any wine. What sells is he goes on Twitter and sees people passing along the video or talking about the video and then he starts doing that second layer of selling which is rolling up your sleeves and doing a lot of hard work, but in the end it can really drive success. Learning about SEO techniques can drive up your traffic as well. It drove him from $4,000,000 to $50,000,000 specifically. For me, I’ve developed videos that fortunately have taken off virally on YouTube, so the videos have over two million views. That in itself doesn’t drive book sales but it helps drive book sales a second layer. I go into a tool like Twitter and Facebook and see the conversations happening around the video. I can reach out and say, look, I’m so excited you like the video, if you read the book, let me know. They might come back and say, I didn’t even know there was a book. I just bought it and I will let you know.
So you can develop those relationships that way.
It is important to know how to start with social media. I learned this stuff from these podcast interviews. The first thing I encourage people to do is, if they haven’t jumped in the water, the water’s nice, come on in and play and jump on in. The one thing to understand with social media is that you’re going to have failures. So it’s key, you don’t want to sink a ton of money in something, so it’s important to keep at a beta level and to keep this stuff light and quick. Instead of sitting in your meeting rooms like we traditionally did and try to vet through things until we think it is perfect, you might have three to five months of meetings, not years. I think for a thirty second television commercial generally it takes fourteen months from conception to actual shooting to get that thing out and get it perfect. That’s not the world we live in today.
In my mind there are really four basic steps to social media success. It doesn’t guarantee success, it just helps you keep these constructs. Even if you’re what I call social media genius, by the end of the day, you should always revisit these things no matter how long you’ve been in this space to make sure you’re going back to the basics and the fundamentals. The four steps are listening to what’s being said about you, your company, your brand or product or service. The second is interacting. Once you’ve listened, then you can join that conversation. If you don’t listen and just join the conversation, it’s analogous to being that guy or girl in the room that goes into that housewarming party and sees four people talking and goes up and says, hey, what are you guys talking about? I don’t know what you’re talking about, but why don’t we talk about what I want to talk about? Let’s talk about this.
You don’t want to be that type of girl at that housewarming party. You don’t want to be that person in a social media room who does that. So the second step is really joining that conversation. The third step where a lot of people trip up, is actually reacting to that conversation. Reacting meaning are you adjusting your products and service based on what’s being said in those conversations? If ninety percent of people are saying, I really love this about your product or brand, then make sure you go back and talk to product development and say, let’s get this thing adjusted more. We need more of this, they love it. Conversely, if ninety percent say I don’t understand this, I hate this about your product and service, make sure you’re getting that vetted out and adjusted quickly. That’s where a lot of people trip up. They’re not quick enough to react to what’s being said.
The fourth piece is really selling. If you do the first three, if you listen, interact and react properly then the fourth is almost going to happen on its own. You just need a soft push out the door for that one.
We are starting to see tools such as Facebook Beacon where you will be able to see the ratings your friends have given to products. I learned this from the many podcast interviews that I listened to. They’ll have to ensure there are tools to enable the user to say, I don’t want everyone to know I’m buying this diamond ring, but if I stay at this hotel I want everyone to know what my thoughts are on it. But also foursquare, for those familiar with foursquare, that’s a tool you use with your mobile phone where if you go to a restaurant, if you go to a hotel, wherever you go, you ‘check in’. It tells you where your location is based on your GO location reading your GPS on your phone. You can do this with the SEO course too. You can put in detailed information about that restaurant that says, if you’re a healthy eater, order this instead of that because this is fried and this is actually not fried and it is whole wheat. You can do that for hotels. That’s another piece where we’re starting to see with foursquare, you’re starting to see those first steps in what I say is a social dynamic world where the products and services will find you rather than you searching for them.
However, a lot of businesses still aren’t getting it. This is why you need SEO training. This is the beauty of how quickly this material moves. If you look at ’08, one of the top questions I might have got from a company is, why do I want to do this? I don’t know if we want to do social media. At the time I’d say, it’s not a choice whether or not you do social media, the choice is how well you do it. It’s a different thing if you’re seeing it, it’s that it’s not you enabled this, it’s going to happen with or without you. So you can be an ostrich that sticks its head in the sand or you can do it. That’s ’08 where companies were saying, we’re not sure if we want to do this. If you look a year forward in ’09, all of a sudden they’re saying, ok, we understand we have to do this, what’s the ROI or how do we track this like we track everything else, how do we shout when we’re messaging like we’ve always done?
That’s where a lot of companies get it and they take old marketing constructs and force it onto social media. So that’s where we find ourselves today. There are some really good companies that are doing some progressive things and there are also companies that have gone to the step, most have gone to the step where they understand they have to play in social media. It isn’t a choice, the choice is how well they do it. They have to figure out how to do it well, but where they get hung up is, they’re trying to have control. Control is the major word. They want to have control over their brand, over their messaging and they don’t realize, in order to excel in this new world, you have to relinquish some of that control that you’ve always had.
So the biggest thing I suppose is that business is a little bit worried by letting it go and letting it go to the people. That could ultimately end up harming their brand which it may or may not depending on whether they have a good product or not.
If you want to do anything in a market, you have to be a market leader. Whether you are a trader or Internet marketer or whatever. Why? Do you have to be a market leader to
be successful in a market? No, until someone who knows what you do and is also prepared to be a market leader comes into the marketplace. Then you’re messed up because they’ll take over from
Why? It’s a fundamental law. As a general rule, people buy from people they know. If you’ve got a choice, same product, same service, same everything, and you know person A, you don’t know person B, who are you going to buy from? You buy from the person you know. It’s physics.
We have to get out there and we’ve finally got out there and we’ve got the guts and the determination to put out content on a regular basis. Here’s this next fundamental. This is a really hard one to accept. No person on this planet ever has been 100% liked. This has huge ramifications. As soon as you stick your neck up, amazingly, in my case there are not only people who don’t like what I do, but they actually have the nerve to put those feelings in writing and criticize me.
The first time I read a criticism of what I had done, completely unfairly in my opinion, it hurt, badly. I don’t think I did any other work that day. I was just raging about how this idiot could have possibly written this about me.
There are some people who unbelievably do not like what you’re doing and your style will rub them the wrong way. This is important. Here’s why. Once I understood this, it enabled me to move on. Think about this for a second. It has to be a part of the human condition to ensure that someone is not ever 100% liked. Think of the horrific consequences if there was anybody in this world who was 100% revered. That person would have ultimate and horrific power.
If there was somebody who existed that had no criticism whatever, as a society we wouldn’t exist past a couple of years. Think about it, Mother Theresa had critics, Gandhi had lots of criticsm, even the most charming SEO expert has their critics.. Name any popular person on the planet and they have critics. It comes with the territory. No one can be 100% liked. It’s part of the human condition. I think once people fundamentally realize this, it certainly helped me, realizing every time I put something out, at best, someone will disagree with me.
You know what? This is something that Gary Halbert taught me. It’s great to be disagreed with. The worst thing you can do is put out stuff that everyone blandly accepts. You want people to either really agree with it or really hate it. That will generate action and energy. When everybody has antipathy for it, then you’re not going to motivate anybody to do anything. That’s why you have to take a view, take a position, you have to take a side.
Market leadership is the real key. We all know through any sort of sales training and that sort of thing, people are crying out to be told what to do. They’re looking for a strong leader to show them what it is they should be doing, because they’re not sure.
What are some of the qualities of a strong leader? A strong leader is someone who says what needs to be said when it needs to be said. He doesn’t care whether or not he’s loved or he’s hated, he says it because it needs to be said. That’s a real quality of a strong leader. Much like Michel Fortin or Norman Hallett, market leaders in their respective businesses.
Similarly, that idea of adding value, not only just saying things to create a stir, to polarize people, but also adding value to that community so that you’re seen as that content creator. I think that is a valuable insight.
There is a huge correlation between the trading niche and the idea of the way people design trading systems. The fundamentals are absolutely incontrovertible, regardless of niche market or system. The fundamentals in finding a good trading system are identical to a good
marketing system for a new website. They are identical for opening up a hairdressing salon.
With a trading system, the best systems are all about helping you say no.
That’s what a trading system should be, it should be keeping you out of the market.
What is human nature? I want to get in, I want to participate. You could apply this to poker, you could apply this to buying businesses. You’re in the business of buying businesses, so let’s buy businesses. Let’s get in there and buy a site. The Bransons of the world, who are perceived as these great risk takers, read their biographies, they’re not risk takers at all. They’re actually very conservative. Ed Turner from CNN actually tries to mitigate all his risk in something. Most SEO companies are like this as well.
Branson now has got it to such a level that all he does is lend his name for 50% of a product. That’s awesome. He has no risk whatsoever. I suppose if he attached his name to a whole bunch of things that didn’t work, his brand and his name worth would go down over time.
All these people have a fundamental in common, and that is they have systems for no. They have systems which they absolutely follow, and they don’t call them systems. They call them all sorts of things. Somebody might call them a process, some might call it a gut feel. I don’t care what they call them. They’re all the same thing. They’re about keeping you out of something so you don’t spend that precious energy on something that’s never going to give you any sort of result.
One of the big things people suffer from is analysis paralysis, as they say, where people get caught up in analyzing something and they get into this loop which is a negative loop. They never actually get something out and test it. In the Thirty Day Challenge we run up against this a lot.
In the Thirty Day Challenge, what we do, we want you to get into the market but we want you to get into the market smart, with no risk. I think this is the other element. What you want to do is, you want to have systems, and I suppose the analogy in trading, is once you’ve created that system, to give it some real world tests. But you do it with limits in place.
Now I’m no trader, but you have all your systems in place so you know that if this all goes pear shaped, you know what your ultimate downside is. Anybody who goes into something knows things. The trouble is, tragically, most people when they go into something don’t know what their downside is, they haven’t put in these limits, they haven’t put in these stops.
To apply that in Thirty Day Challenge language, what do we do? We say, use a free account here at WordPress Direct (you can read the Wordpress Direct review for more information) and in fifteen minutes, and we’ll show you how to do it, it will take you a little bit of time the first time you do it because it’s all new and it’s tricky for you, but it won’t cost you a cent. Create a blog. Spend $8 and please only spend $8 on a domain name. Rather than guess a domain name, let’s use our Market Samurai research and it’s free trial, so you haven’t even had to pay for Market Samurai to do a test.
Let’s throw those up, let’s put them in, let’s use Traffic Bug and its free trial to get the thing indexed. Now let’s roll our sleeves up and make some effort and let’s create some content and some links and back links to get things cracking and let’s see what happens.
What have people risked? They’ve risked time and $8 for a domain name, but that’s it. We even mitigate against that because we say down the track, hey, if it didn’t work out, here’s how to sell the site on Flipper and Thirty Day Challenge created sites that are typically selling for $75 to $100. So they’re even making a little bit of money on the $8 for the domain name.
Let us consider something which I would call advanced SEO. It’s something that I know a lot of serious players, internet marketing players are doing when it comes to SEO techniques. That is leveraging their own network of sites.
There’s a lot of debate about whether you need separate IPs and whether you need to mask the information because, again, the search engines find that if you’re linking between sites that you actually own, you’re going to get penalized. I’ve just known a lot of people are doing it and they’re having a lot of success with it.
I think a lot of people can really get caught up putting their focus into the wrong area when they head down this track. You need to just see it for what it is and then apply a few basic things that I’ll talk about and you’re going to be much better off than if you do try and go off and do it. I have actually had experience with doing this type of thing myself.
We were looking at putting some little clusters of sites on different unique class C IP addresses. We were registering the domain names in different people’s names so that way they weren’t all linked together. You need to make sure you’re avoiding things like putting the same AdSense account across all of them. In fact, especially for your feeder site, it’s better not to have any AdSense on there. It’s the same with Google Analytics.
There are so many ways that Google can tie those networks together that you can constantly feel like you’re having to look over your shoulder. You should really be focused on building those pages, getting your good content out there, rather than spending your time focusing on, have I messed up here and have I cross linked something and then effectively that whole network is going to get taken down.
I think it gets back to that idea that it’s all about building a good quality business that’s going to last, not necessarily going for black hat type techniques. There is a line as to what’s reasonable and what’s unreasonable. I don’t think Google would say having a few different websites is bad.
People do that, people have multiple websites. The way that it is linking together, you see people talking about all the different wagon wheel linking structures. There are so many different ways that you can do it.
I think you’re better off, once you start to build your own network, depending on the competitive niche, you might register three or five blogs on different domain names. Start building the content up on those, don’t stress too much about having them on different class C IP addresses. SEO experts don't stress out on this, so why should you.
If you have a couple of hosting accounts, it can’t hurt to spread them out. Then just start to build good quality links into those websites and then be strategic in the way that you send the links over. Don’t use one of these plug ins where you drop in a keyword and every time it is mentioned on the page, it is going to link back to that specific page.
You might send a few links here, a few links there. It’s also important to use web 2.0 properties and other websites to build your own network. So now when I think about building my own network, it’s not just about my own domain names.
I’ll also go and set up a blog over at WordPress and also go set up a blog over at Blogger and use some of these other websites where we can leverage off the age of their domain name and the links it’s already getting and build a site there. Then we can use that to shoot back targeted links.
I think the benefit of building your own network is the fact that you can so tightly target and be really specific on what links you’re sending to where. To get caught up in a lot of the other technqiues can get you off track, when really you just need to be focusing on let’s build a business. To summarize, the main thing is just to focus on three or five different additional sites and do good off page linking to those and then make sure that you don’t excessively cross link between each of your different websites in that network.
I started out in SEO by accident. I actually never sought to learn it, all the more so be good at it. Now, I am no SEO guru by any stretch, by I do consider myself an SEO expert of sorts (selling myself is part of what I learned so please bear with me if I become, well, over bearing).
The way I got into SEO started when I met David Jenyns. Now, he's an SEO guru... and a trading guru... and a complete entrepreneur. And a whole lot more! You can check out his site at www.davidjenyns.com if you want to check his credentials, but let me save you some time and say that he is legit.
So anyway, I was just browsing around looking for stuff to buy. (You see, I am an online shopping addict. An addict to the point that all my credit cards are maxed out, all by online shopping. Imagine that.) So I was looking for some rock t-shirts and I chances upon this awesome rock clothing store, www.planet13.com.au. So impressed was I that I did some research and found out it was owned by one David Jenyns. Yep, the same David Jenyns. I Googled his name and it turned out he was more than a clothing merchant, he was a trading guru, an SEO guru, and an overall successful complete entrepreneur. Now, at first I didn't believe it, thinking maybe he was good at one, but not all his endeavors. Digging deeper, turned out I was wrong. He was awesome. (I am saying this from a business point of view and not in a bromantic way). His awesomeness oozed just enough that I needed to know all about him. (To learn from him with no bromantic overtures).
And the rest, as they say, is history. Well, history in the making.
I’ve had emails that have put fifteen hundred people on a webinar and it’s taken me five minutes to write. I’ve had emails that have put people on a teleseminar or sent them to an order page that
have brought in $50, $60, $300, $460,000 and they’ve taken me ten minutes to write. This is the power of proper copywriting and SEO writing.
But of course it is the 10,000 hours that I had to put in to get to that point now, because it is almost like I have needed to become unconsciously competent.
It is only partly the 10,000 hours because I don’t go through and say, right, am I using the right headlines, am I using the right call to actions? Some of that comes out automatically. The key is, it’s real, down to earth speaking to people. Let me give you examples of a couple of emails, a couple of short ones. I will use a headline.
Here’s an email I just sent out: Three Killer Deals in Thirty Minutes or Less, Can You Do It? So you’ve got a little curiosity in there. Three Killer Deals, so I don’t want to say I’m not using any kind of copywriting technique anymore. You’ve still got to get people to read the email. So that’s a decent subject line and my from field by the way is Jim Fleck, they know it’s from me. There are no doubts about it.
It says, ‘Hello. I haven’t given out any juicy, secret tool I use in quite a while. I want to show you one of the things I use every single day. It helps me do things much faster than it did even six months ago. My competition is valuating properties in a certain way. I got this software tool that I use every single day. It allows me to duplicate my strategies and multiply my strategies and techniques which gets the same amount of work done in a lot less time. It makes my hours of work become minutes. I just want you to join me tonight so I can reveal this tool. I’m going to show you how I use it everyday. It is one of my most valued real estate tools.
Let me ask you, how many offers did you write this week? How about this month? If you’re like most average investors, the answer is probably zero to one. It’s an absolute fact that the amount of offers you make is a direct reflection of how much money you make in this business. You want to know how many we made? Over two hundred. So the bottom line is, if you’re not writing offers, you’re not making money.’ I didn’t use a whole lot of headlines in there and a lot of superlatives. That’s just me speaking and getting a point across. Now this email is just killing.
For people who have studied old school direct marketing, you can still get elements of it for driving traffic to your site. It’s toned down hugely from where Dan Kennedy and Jay Abrahams used to write these really outrageous sales letters. It feels like a lot toned down version but you can still feel some of that language in there.
There is no doubt I’ve written these for years. Maybe it is harder to write this way than the old way. I find it easier to write this way but again I’ve been writing for twenty years. They do say in the old days when we did mail order and we did sales letters, you had to pay someone more money to write a four page sales letter than a twelve page, because it was harder to sell in four pages. You didn’t have enough room.
I have another one, the subject line of this, ‘The response was overwhelming.’ This was for a replay of a webinar. ‘The response was overwhelming. Here is the replay you asked for.’ So there are definitely some copywriting and SEO techniques in there. I’m being assumptive. ‘You asked for it’. Oh, people are asking for this, I need to go check this out. ‘Response was overwhelming’. What did I miss? Inside the email it says, ‘Finally the government and banks help us do deals.’ This is real estate related. ‘And I have the program to make it happen. The government is beginning to realize that without us investors, this real estate mess will never turn around. The government needs you. Jim Fleck needs you. Hear my sold out webinar tomorrow. Go here. Thank you. Jim.’ That was it. This probably brought in $17, $18,000 over the space of the first twenty-four hours.
When you consider SEO, links is where it’s at. Every page you optimize for you’re giving yourself another chance of getting picked up on more keywords.
That’s why e commerce websites work so well. You can have an e commerce site that is loaded with a thousand different pages, all of these different keywords that are optimized for specific product names. These are the long tail things that people are searching if they’re about to buy. So going for that can be a great deal easier than trying to target two or three pages to try and get someone to a long form sales letter. It really is about volume.
There is also the other benefit as well. If you’ve got that amount of pages, you can control your internal linking structure. A lot of people don’t put a lot of weight on the internal linking structure. I really think it is a highly underutilized SEO technique. Some people are doing it, but really it is so powerful because it’s on your site. You can control where you put the link, what anchor text it gets and what type of link it is.
There is the idea that Google doesn’t necessarily rank websites, it ranks individual pages. I don’t think you’re going to get as much of a benefit from getting an off site link back to your website. But it definitely adds, and you get a lot more control over it and it also makes it more spiderable. It’s all about passing that right link reputation. When you’re linking, you can make sure that you’re telling Google what it is that this particular page is about.
When you’re doing a lot of other link building methods, if you’re trying to build, let’s say deep links where the keyword may not necessarily be in the root part of the domain name, you might have it in the extension but your keyword isn’t as clear because it’s been diluted. The density of that keyword is being diluted because there are other key words or characters that are linking in that particular anchor text. When you’re doing a lot of your own link optimization on page, you can really control that. You can say exactly what that page is about and not dilute what it is that you’re trying to rank for.
The way I see it, your internal linking, if you’re trying to rank for say, dog training and you build a number of subsidiary pages around your home page which is trying to rank for the term dog training using these pages around it and linking to it, you’re basically telling Google or the search engine, this page is about dog training.
I think the search engines will take that into account. There’s always some degree of mistrust in your own website. We know that all website owners maybe have some kind of commercial intention. So they can’t just go on your word alone.
You tell them internally that your page is about dog training and then back that up by other sites linking and saying, yes, it is about dog training. With your internal links, you’re saying, listen Mr Google, this page is about dog training, and just for good measure, there are all these sites around the net telling you it’s about dog training. So logically they’re going to have to assume it is about dog training and reward you with a high ranking.
The way that we do that, using the e commerce example, you’ll just do it when someone visits the page; it’s almost like Amazon. Clients who looked at this product were also interested in these products. You’ll have the three other products. Beneath that, I’ll have the test link. You don’t really want to have these site wide links where you’ve got left hand navigation.
I’ll pick out a few pages that we use for the site wide links, but typically for those few pages, I’m funneling the link juice straight into almost like a category page rather than individual product pages. On the product pages, I’m link building to other relevant pages using that anchor text.
Let’s say you’re looking at a particular Sony camera or something like that. Clients who looked at this Sony camera also checked out these other Sony cameras. The link is coming from a page talking about Sony, linking to another page with Sony with the right anchor text. I think that’s the way to do it, rather than bury right down in the footer of the page all of the links to their different pages on their websites with the right anchor test. I think you should do that, but really target the key ones that you want to rank for.
In order to get back links to your website, you can use things like AMA or Portal Feeder or any things like that where they allow you to post out using their blog network. An Article Marketing Automation review can be read here. A lot of them are now allowing you to embed a
video. We’re finding that embedding the video is just as good as getting a link back to the video. That’s a sign that it is a popular video.
Think about it from Google’s perspective. If someone’s deemed the video so good that they want it to be seen in their blog as opposed to just linking to it, again, physics, it’s much more likely to have more weight. If they think it is so cool that they’ve embedded it in their blog, that to me would carry slightly more weight than just a pure link.
Do I know that Google does that? No. Do I have any evidence of that? No. It’s amazing. Google pretty much, at the end, of the day has to work on common sense, because if they start not working on common sense, then somebody else will eat their lunch.
And that will be when they’ll get gamed. So replicate what happens in nature and just think through logically.
As far as off page factors are concerned, it’s all about back links. However, it’s all about the quality of those back links. Anybody can generate a thousand back links off social media sites or whatever. That used to work in the good old days. But Google realizes that’s not real and kills it and they make adjustments to their algorithm.
So at the end of the day, back links are what is vital and the quality of where you get those back links from.
I look at common sense. If CNN is linking to your little article, it’s got to be interesting. It’s got to be important. That’s what Google looks at and they say, ok. If Ed Dale’s site that has one article on it and hasn’t been updated since 2004, does one link to a site, it’s not going to give much weight to that at all.
The analogy I try to give is in newspapers. If an article is published on the front page of The New York Times about you, a lot of people are going to see that and it’s probably more of national relevance. But if it’s published in the Ovens and Murray Advertiser, which is the 400 circulation paper at my old home town of Beechworth, it might have some relevance locally, and Google will show it locally I might add, but is it going to have any impact on a national level? No. Four hundred people are going to see it.
That’s the way Google works. It figures, wow, this big important site that we give authority to thinks that this content is worth linking to, we’re going to check this out. We’re going to rate this more highly than a site that has no authority, that has just been created or is an unused blog or whatever it happens to be. It’s as basic and advanced as that. It’s a bit like checkers. It’s two minutes to learn but a lifetime to master.
The thing that frustrates me enormously, and maybe people just don’t realize this. This is all back trackable, thanks to the magnificence of Market Samurai. You can now go into any keyword and pull up those front page sites. What people don’t realize then, is that you can go into each of those sites and analyze exactly what level of authority it has.
When we refer to authority, of course we mean page rank, PR people refer to it, it’s a logarithmic scale from 0 to 9. The thing that people really need to realize is that, and this is a fluffy number, not an exact number, but Google views a PR1 site to have ten times the authority of a PR0. A PR2 site has ten times the authority of a PR1 and so on. So if you have a link from a PR5 site, that’s worth hundreds of links of a PR0 site because of the way Google thinks about authority.
Given that this is the case, you can go into Market Samurai, and you can just research exactly where your competitors are getting their links from. You can find this exactly, not guess, but research it exactly. Then if it happens to be a blog, or whatever it happens to be, why not send them an email and ask them to link to your blog? Or you could make a comment on their blog and link it back to you. It is really as straightforward as that. Read the Market Samurai review if you wish to learn more.
Listen in on this Ed Dale podcast if you want to learn more.
At the moment in our online campaign, we’re just getting ready to design a new looking landing page to test against the old one. So we’re constantly changing that, changing the copy on it and
looking for more and more places to run banners on the internet and get people into our funnel. Really the way to succeed in internet marketing is get your back end established as soon as possible, and then focus all your time on the front
end, which is acquiring new customers.
So if you’ve been involved in marketing for any time, this is really backward to what most people are taught. Get the front end, get some ads running and then start working on selling more and more stuff. The biggest companies I finally discovered that’s not how they work.
Which sale is harder to make? The front end. Which end faces more competition? The front end. Which end requires constant innovation? The front end. So how can you automate those things? You just can’t. Long term, you’ve got to have new customers entering into relationship with your business and close a sale or you’ll be out of business.
Most of these internet marketers are constantly scrambling, that’s why you see some internet marketers constantly coming out with new products because they don’t have new customers. They’ll get Joint Ventures with other people, they’ll maybe do a product launch and they’ll get those customers in there. By the way, product launches don’t generally make a ton of money on the front end. Many of them actually lose money but a lot of them don’t make much money.
The last three product launches, one person did about $450,000 in sales. Now he gave away about $125,000 in prizes and that $450 was split at least two ways, 50 – 50 plus he had 20% refunds. So the $450 had $90,000 in refunds, that comes down to $360, that was split so that’s about $180 and $125,000 in prizes, he was up about $55,000 and worked for three months. Three months on that launch. That’s some continuity but that is split 50 – 50 every month. So I just want to impress on people they’re not always as huge as people think they are.
It’s not a bad way to boost your income a little bit once or twice a year, but again, our product launch, I run the same thing to my new leads constantly because they’re brand new to the internet. They’re brand new to my list. They don’t know that I did a product launch last month. They don’t know that I did it last week. So part of my auto responder series is people get into my product launch as if it’s brand new. They get that same sense of anticipation of this thing is brand new that everybody else did when they participated in my launch.
Our product launch goes continuously, it never stops, just a perpetual launch in fact.
To summarize, I’ll start off and the person will have carved out their niche. Then they set up their product offering and having that funnel where you’ve got the entry level, lead generator front end book or low cost course to get them in. You progressively go down that funnel, sell courses, seminars and coaching and also continuity for that.
Once you’ve got that system in place, you then swap over to spending the majority of your time building up that front end and coming up with as many creative ways as possible to generate those leads.
One of the ones and this is something that I think a lot of internet marketers never head down that track, is TV and infomercials. I have had a lot of experience writing copy, SEO writing and long form sales copy and direct response, all those types of things. There are two parts there, both video just online selling my products and services and also video through TV through infomercials and things like that.
TV is extremely difficult and extremely expensive and it’s not really accessible to 95% of the people. I was fortunate enough to get in with a company that ran many of the successful thirty minute infomercials here in the United States. Their infomercials were about mail order and about real estate and about other things. I happened to be there at the right time when they wanted to convert them to the internet. So I was able to work on other shows for eight years before I got my show on the air.
That’s a difficult thing to teach people. It cost $1,000,000 a week to run the show, so this is not a possibility for many people.
SEO techniques are very useful to jumpstart and get your websites up to a point where you reach that
critical mass and then hopefully the natural SEO starts to take over.
The search engines will always tell you, if you want to rank high, produce quality content and Google will reward you with high rankings. That’s all well and good, but when you’re just starting out, the fact is, even if you’re producing extremely high content, it will take time for people to take notice of you and get those links. You have to give yourself an initial boost.
I think it is one of those things where you just learn a little bit through trial and error. I jumped onto a course called SiteSell which was the evolution of Ken Evoy’s work (read his Site Build It review by the way) after his Make Your Site Sell and that talked a lot about the fundamentals, building one of those solid websites and then getting in there, learning about the keyword research, identifying what is your buyer versus just a browser, what are different ways you can optimize for those particular keywords.
In the early days, it was a lot easier to manipulate the search engines through various different methods.
Early on, we were doing keyword spamming, for lack of a better word. You’d just take your keyword, you’d drop it in as many times as you can onto the page. In your title tag, you used white text on a white background so you could get more words on the page. Google slowly got smarter to some of these different techniques. It was a little bit of an evolution.
There was a point about two years ago now where I had my second AdSense account banned. They said it was a violation of their terms of service and when I asked them what it was I was doing wrong, they said, we can’t tell you, you just need to read the terms of service.
At that point I thought, I’ve had enough of trying to do these things that are a little bit more on the cusp. How about we start to build good solid businesses that sell good solid products that we’re proud to promote? That’s when all the really good link building came about. It’s trying to do and replicate what’s happening in nature, very white hat SEO.
Before that, you could do a little bit more aggressive stuff but they just keep on getting smarter and smarter. Obviously Google has highly paid engineers who just sit there all day trying to figure out how people are gaming the search engines and then coming up with ways to circumvent that. There’s nothing worse, if I use my AdSense example, than building up a significant business through that AdSense model and then just having it disappear overnight. They are the judge, jury and executioner, so you don’t really get a chance to argue or say anything. That’s their prerogative what they want to do.
For me, over the past eighteen months, two years is when I made the switch. They’ve been gradually doing it. People used to throw around densities. Density really doesn’t even come into my thinking when I’m designing a page any more, I just put it in naturally. When you write naturally as well, you put in those latent semantic terms that people keep on talking about. But it happens naturally by putting out the good content.
Each stage of the way, different things have started dropping off. The most recent one I can think of is using no follow. You used to be able to use page rank sculpting by using the no follow, but Google made that announcement saying, we’re no longer using page rank like we were before. Page rank is still there, but it is divided equally among whatever links are linking off page, whether or not it’s got the follow or no follow.
If it’s got the no follow, it just means that no benefit is sent to that page but it’s still divided up that way. You can’t sculpt page rank like you used to. There are plenty of things like that which have happened over the years and each one just seems to drop off. It always comes back to, as long as you’re following the fundamentals, making sure that the basics of your on page optimization is done correctly and then you build good quality links, that is the best way to go.
I have recently designed a little product called Valuing Websites which was created to be something that was consumed easily and be an evergreen product. We created a blog that used the categories, and those categories on that blog were the keyword phrases which were most likely to attract traffic in this particular market.
It’s worth us putting in all the effort to create a really professional product and I encourage people to go, even if you’re not interested in the actual topic, have a look at the layout of the site because it is a good example. We created the categories so that Google looks at the site and says, oh, check that out. When I see value in websites, I expect to see these other phrases in a site about value in websites so we use those as the categories in that blog; we use a WordPress blog.
We’ve titled the videos and we’ve keyword tagged the videos that make sense. Google sees what it expects to see. It’s interesting, I can’t even tell you if it has any page rank at the moment, but it would not surprise me if it shoots up quickly to a PR2 or a PR 3 in the next update because of those on page factors, you’d call them, that help you in your SEO efforts.
You can get all these on page factors right from the get go and it doesn’t take you any more time or effort.
This is what I see time and time again, that people are so enthusiastic to get their product up and running, that just that extra little time spent doing the keyword research with a view to targeting traffic would be good. Now of course what we’re doing with that site, is we’re sowing the seeds. We know now it doesn’t happen overnight. These things don’t happen overnight. But I bet you in three to six months, when somebody types in valuing websites, our site, if it’s not going to be number one, it’s going to be close to number one.
That whole idea of you measure twice and you cut once is valuable. You’ll do that market research, you’re setting up a WordPress blog, you’re making sure you’re feeding the data back using Market Samurai and that pulls from a variety of sources, Google being one of them. It’s effectively like Google says, here are the keywords related to this website, then feeding its own information back into it, which obviously it believes it should be seeing. Then you’re putting out champagne content.
When we’re installing the blog, we put that all on the same domain name and under a single line and then we use sub directories for the blog. So for example, it would be, bakingacake.com/blog. Now I know people who do it other ways. They may attack a different keyword phrase. I don’t think that is as important as getting a core right of on page factors. Think about it. Google just wants to see what it expects to see when it is a normal thing. It doesn’t want to be gamed. Google doesn’t want to be gamed. It has billions of websites which are being created by people who are not trying to game the system.
It looks at those websites and says, ok, if I see this word, I expect to see these other words or links from these sites. That’s what I expect to see. As soon as it sees stuff that it doesn’t expect to see, or it sees the phrase baking a cake seventy-three times on one A4 page of text, one legal pad worth of text, it says, hang on, what’s going on here? It flags it and it starts to realize, hang on, I’m being gamed here.
That is just the on page factors. It’s far more important to worry about your content and creating great content once you’ve got your fundamentals right.
You do that initial research, you know what keywords you’re targeting, you know what your phrases have targeted. I think Rob Somerville puts them in a little text file. So every time he creates a video, or every time a new piece of content goes up, he’s got his tags ready to go. He copies and pastes them and in they go.
We don’t put thousands of tags in because, again, if Google comes to a site and they see thousands of tags, ask yourself, does the normal person put in thousands of tags? The answer is no. They maybe do half a dozen tags. You just want to do what normal people would do.
When launching a new website, it can be most effective to do press releases and interviews. You can get a virtual assistant to do that for you. That’s
sort of a combination of traditional publicity with online stuff. Let’s look at someone on the internet, someone who doesn’t want to go anywhere, someone who doesn’t want to leave the home
office, doesn’t really want to do anything.
Let’s say you’re on a tele seminar. A lot of people phone in to tele seminars. They sit there and they wait for it to start and then it starts. People say, introduce yourself. So people say, Hi, this is Bob from Texas, Hi, this is Mary from Queeensland. Do you want to be from Queensland, or do you want to be Hi, this is Martin from customercatcher.com? It’s a verbal driving people to your site.
This audio is going to be online later if they give the replay. If they provide the transcript, then your website is stated in the transcript. Even when people convert it to a pdf, that link is usually live from the pdf to the transcript.
I'll show up to educational events and ask a question. Everyone stands at the mike and says, Hi, this is David from Australia. No, you’re David from theSEOmethod.com. So you’re from your website. That’s just a small example of just taking a different thinking pattern and getting leverage out of a tactic. I have the automated systems in place for the people to sign up to get their free videos and so on all from that same domain name.
Let’s consider the outsourcing question. Most people when they have outsourcers, train them every time when they get a new outsourcer versus recording it with Camtasia, saying this is how I build my websites, this is how I think, giving people an idea of your personality when you outsource to site designers for example, or educating people about the system that you use. Here’s how to get into my shopping cart, here’s how to do email marketing, here’s the type of template we use. Educate them about your systems with a system.
That’s how McDonald’s basically made its millions of dollars. They documented everything better than anybody else.
With the stages you go through, having that documentation down that’s really where you get that key leverage because you can just plug someone else into it and even if that person drops off the perch for whatever reason, you’ve got that system recorded. It’s very easy to plug someone straight back in.
I see a tremendous amount of leverage there. Getting links from Microsoft or Entrepreneur or something like that are high leverage because you’re leveraging off the business they have already built. To line something like that up, is still very much, you need to do it.
Here’s an example you don’t need to do. If you can get someone who can write a basic article for you, or a basic blog post, do you think they could write a letter to the editor? If they comment on a new product, write a letter to the editor, they post on the forum, or the blog provided by that site. It doesn’t have to be you. If they have some generic knowledge of your industry, anybody can take some of your industry documents or transcripts from your tele seminar, a piece of your article and then Google and find sites that have forums or blogs and then post to them and other social media.
Posting to blogs you can outsource fairly readily. There are certainly spam ones where I get, ‘gee, this is a great blog. I hope you keep posting from coylids.com.’ It’s not that difficult to make a real comment on comments that are already posted.
John Reese, from nowincome.com is famous for his Traffic Secrets. If you’re on his mailing list, he sends out a link to his blog and says, hey what do you think of my new pet squirrel Rocky? You write in and say, hey, I’ve never heard of anyone who actually had a pet squirrel anymore, so good luck to you and Rocky. MartinWales customercatcher.com.
You can have someone outsource that with your signature file for helping you to get customers: twenty three videos at customer catcher.com/free. It’s my signature file but I said, hey, good luck with Rocky the squirrel. You can outsource that.
When building a website, I
love the idea of creating good evergreen content that gets out there and people want to link to. When you put out really good content, SEO happens naturally. People will start to link to you if
you’re putting out articles, if you’re using PR Newswire.
These are all things that happen naturally. Obviously what Google wants to do is serve up the most relevant results to the user and whatever the user is looking for. So they’re trying to basically filter out all the rubbish out there for ones that people are actually looking for. The way they do that is, basically when we’re talking in terms of SEO, it is natural for things to get inbound links and for those links to grow over time.
It is important to begin with the objective in mind; it needs to be evergreen content, so quality content. If you say the first version of iPhone is excellent, well they are on the 3G now, so in technology it is a little more challenging. If you’re in a niche where you can put it out, like human resources training, where it’s talking about How to Get Along with Difficult People, that’s great. That’s been going on since cave man got a mother-in-law.
If you can write an article even within your industry, even in technology you can do a general article on how to pick technology. Call other customers of the software, read the industry magazines. You can always come up with this generic tip or check list, no matter what your industry is, even if you have specific information that changes over time. When I teach people radio, we have a site, radiotalkshowhost.com. We give a lot of tips on how to increase the ability to make money, but also to increase your credibility and your celebrity.
Lucille Ball, I don’t know if my friends in Australia and New Zealand know who she is, but I believe she is a global phenomenon. She was a funny lady doing sitcom television in the 1960s in black and white - she’s on Blueray now. She didn’t know what Blueray was and in fact she’s passed away years and years ago. Her content is evergreen because it is funny, humorous, slapstick stuff but it stays around forever.
When I had executives on my radio show, I would say, you’re coming on the radio show, why don’t you have your publicity people, your PR people do a press release? What do corporations and companies do? They put their own press releases on their websites. You have to be smart enough to suggest it. They pay a PR company $5,000 a month to do stuff for them. I’ve now got a company paying $5,000 putting my links up on their site. The next wonderful thing about corporations is, once they put something on their website, they hardly ever change it. So now you’ve got the longevity. Now you’ve got a link.
I did an interview with the world wide vice president of marketing for salesforce.com. They were doing a big push. On their website they have a link from a press release because David Findlay is appearing on the Entrepreneur Magazine E Biz show. The last time I checked, I remember that being up three years later. They had their own publicity going. So even though it wasn’t a direct link to me all the time, the fact that they had a link there to your site means you’re going to rank higher in the search engines.
The other thing we discovered is that video ranks higher, faster. Called Video SEO, Google made a foray into video a couple of years ago and I was at a conference in London and somebody mentioned this thing called video.google.com. I had some video with me and I just threw it up. I was number one in sales and marketing for quite a long time because other people hadn’t even heard of it yet.
Google likes fresh material as well as good material. They like fresh content. This is why blogging is so important. It all interweaves. We just keep going around in circles with the material. You write a press release, you do a video, commentary on it for a minute, you have your own YouTube channel. By the way, the number two search engine now is YouTube. Most people don’t think of YouTube as a search engine. They think of it as a toy, a place to go to in order to see the latest Leggo Star Wars. But you can go on there, and people search on there for ‘real world’ ‘business information’.
Deliver fresh, evergreen content and learn how to use and distribute it. Your websites will benefit greatly.
Outsourcing is a vital part of any online business and must be handled carefully.
Very often, the business owner himself is going to need to create that content because it’s hard to disseminate information if it’s not coming in the right voice.
I’m going to talk about outsourcing in two different ways. Number 1, I think people outsource the wrong things way too soon. One of the first outsourcing things is, I’m going to rush out and get a VA, a virtual assistant, somebody who is going to help me with all these things.
If you’re starting up a new business, you need to be in the fray for a while. You need to understand what your clients are saying. You need to understand what all the people you’re interacting with are saying and doing. You need to become an expert on your business before you ask anyone else to run it for you in any way.
You need to do that first. Hold out on outsourcing those kinds of things for a little while and make sure you know what you’re doing. Before you outsource your social media to someone else to do, you sure better make sure you know what your voice is and how they need to talk.
You can’t teach people to do what you haven’t done. If you’re going to actually bring someone in to do the writing, create the videos, all those kind of things, they’d better know what your voice is and you’d better know how to tell them what that voice is and how to get it and what to say and all of those things.
The other side of outsourcing is outsourcing the technology component. If you don’t understand how to install a WordPress blog, build a website, set up social media pages, build a Facebook fan page, all those things, if you don’t know how to do that, outsource that. You can get it outsourced for next to nothing. You go to scriptlance.com or elance.com. I’m sure there are some specific to Australia that I don’t know about that you can go to and you can get these people in India, in China, in Romania, in Russia to do these things for you for nearly nothing.
The last full website I had built was about seventeen pages. I provided the copy, and that was it. They did the graphic design for me and I had it done for less than $300 and under two weeks.
You don’t need to do everything yourself. But do not rush to outsource. Wait until you have a little bit of cash behind you, and your business is starting to flourish, and then think about outsourcing.
When someone is starting out to open an online business, it is very
important that he create a strong and vibrant persona to whom people can relate, whom they can trust and ultimately from whom they will buy the product or service being offered.
This may, at first glance, seem like a very people centric brand building process. But social media can also lend itself to businesses as well, like particular business promoting. It lends itself perfectly to either one. If you’re an individual and you want to build a personal brand, social media is superb for that. If you’re a company, it’s superb for extending your brand or building your brand awareness of your company as well.
The key is, you have to have either someone who is in a position of authority, a CEO, a senior director of marketing if you’re a larger company whatever it is, giving the authentic voice to that message. If not that person, then you have to empower the person who’s going to write whatever it is they will, and to give them the authority to be able to create your voice or take your voice and carry it out to the masses in a way you approve of and is coherent with you. Also, the experience people have must meet the expectation you’ve created when they come into your store or they buy your product or they call you on the phone.
It works perfectly for either one and it’s just a matter of creating that authentic voice, being very transparent, being very relevant and making sure that if it’s for a company or a product and it’s not senior people themselves writing and doing it, the person they put in charge commands enough trust and will be authorized and have the authority to do what they need to do.
To start building that compelling persona, regular, daily blog posts need to be created.
There are a couple of ways of setting up the blog. You can use Posterous which you’ll find at posterous.com, which is a free blog service. Posterous is one of the blogging platforms which is most effective because it allows you to do virtually everything to your blog from a cell phone, a BlackBerry, and iPhone, anything that you might be using. You can port a domain name over to it so it would be your domain and then your blog would show up when they type that in. You can do that or you can use a WordPress blog or a TypePad blog, any of them you want to.
The purpose of the blog though, is to develop links back to your main website so that when searches are done, people end up back to wherever it is that your products and services are, so they can learn more about your company. This is also called link building.
To set up the blog it’s very simple. You set up a WordPress blog and that’s where all your posts are going to be at. Ideally if you use a WordPress blog it would be a sub domain of your main website. So you just have a link to it. In my case it would be howtosellwhennobodysbuying.com/blog or boldapproach.com/blog or whatever it is and then it would go there. Those are the kind of things you want to do.
Then from there what happens is, your domain is ranking higher and higher in the search engines because everything is your domain/blog/whatever the topic is with the keywords in it, that’s what’s going to get it ranked. So the purpose of the blog, is to drive traffic back to your website and as well as showcase your knowledge. As people search for these terms, or they search for these keyword phrases, they’re coming back to you and seeing you as the most knowledgeable expert.
My goal when I help a client start this process, is to think of it like this. We’re casting a net and any place you step on the internet, we want you to step into our little net so that we can reel you in.
In terms of Internet marketing and advertising so much can be gained from SEO,so it should be considered an important part of any Internet marketing plan. Failing to maximize your site for search
engines may end up in a huge loss regarding no cost advertising that's efficiently obtained from ranks in addition to search engines. Some degree of SEO is needed by Internet marketing, that is
why a reading of this article is a must ,which will tell you what SEO is and why it is necessary.
SEO optimization's a strategy where a site's made to obtain favorable search engine ranks from prominent engines. This may be attained using several various methods and ultimate SEO strategies in combination with several various methods for completion of a well considered SEO promotion. Should you be tuning your website for search engines, you need to understand factors such as keyword density, prominence, META tags, headings and inbound links. Keyword density is one of the most common SEO plans that SEO specialists use and necessarily involves using the concerned keywords which are often in the contents of a website to show the relevance of those keywords with that of the website. Search engines are likely to reward websites with optimal keyword densities with better search engine rankings in an effort to provide Internet users with the most related websites for particular search expressions.So this is very important.
Dominant keywords must additionally be thought of including how close the keyword's are placed to the site's introduction. The common errors with this way is thinking the ideal chance for including keywords is in the 1st line of viewable words on the page. This isn't correct since search engines crawl site code in contrast with the viewable site data. What this means is that one can incorporate relevant keywords a long time prior to setting down actual visible website content, which could include title codes and META tags. Business owners that use the keyword in the code rather than keywords on their website have an advantage.
It is very important for those who are interested in SEO to use inbound links. It is an other area of interest if you plan to be an SEO expert. Inbound links are valuable links that are found on other websites,they can lead traffic to your website. Why are these links so crucial? Primarily because many prominent websites put a value on inbound links, which are the equivalent of one website advertising for, or suggesting, another website. When you want to obtain inbound links, however, you should do so from other websites that rank well with search engines. Many of these search engines take into account the rank of a primary website in determining the value of inbound links.
We will explain why you need optimization of your website in the first place. And now we briefly explain the main concept of SEO. SEO is really vital since the majority of web users really value search engine results and probably exclusively inspect rank sites when seeking a particular keyword. To get more information information on Melbourne SEO services make sure to visit the link above.