May 24, 2005
Free Local Keyword Tool
Creating localized keywords, internal links and Google Adwords campaigns is a great strategy if you are trying to win local searchers.
You know, the person that is looking for just the right remodeling contractor in their upscale suburb.
One strategy that I've employed is to sprinkle targeted suburb names in a visually pleasing, contextual way throughout your web copy. In other words, don't just list all of the suburbs in your community and expect it to make a difference.
If you write a blog, occasionally mention a local neighborhood, in your internal links, add city names [kansas city pet food] as opposed to [pet food].
Lastly, if you use pay-per-click advertising, (and since you can choose local options for advertising you should!) create keyword lists to bid on that contain all of the zip codes, neighborhoods, suburbs and communities you want to attract visitors from.
Anyone who has created this type of list can tell you that the work is tedious, to say the least. Your eventual list may be 400-500 entries long. Here's a free tool I stumbled across that automates a fair amount of the work of creating localized keyword lists. You just put in a zip code and determine how far out you want the search to go [how many mile radius], select some other features and presto you get a big fat list of keywords containing all of the localized info you could dream of (I found suburbs I didn't even know existed.)
Now, many of these very specific keyword terms won't get much traffic but, when they do, you will own the work and the traffic will be very targeted.
Check out the Free Local Keyword Tool
May 05, 2005
Blog and Ping - A Search Engine Traffic Bonanza
This is an article that I posted in my newsletter at Duct Tape Marketing It's a little long for a blog post but I have received so many favorable comments I felt the need to publish it here too.
Everyone is talking about blogs these days as the magic money-making marketing tool. Some of the hype may actually be true, but I suggest you cut through most of what you read about blogs just long enough to understand why every business needs a blog.
Right now, that’s not to say this won’t change, search engines are in love with real blogs. By real blogs I mean blogs that are set-up and run by businesses that offer useful content on them. Like every successful marketing method there are people out there setting up fake blogs and dumping garbage, but keyword rich, content into them in order to trick the search engines into ranking the content highly. [Please resist the urge to add to this form of search engine spam as it may actually get you banned by a search engine.]
When you understand a little about how blog software works you get a better understanding about why search engines love blogs. Here are the top reasons that business blogs and search engines go hand in hand.
Lots of Pages
Each blog entry is shown in chronological order on a blog’s homepage but, each entry is in reality its own web page, with its own unique URL and title. So, an active blogger can create hundreds of keyword rich web pages in a matter of months.
Change Is Good
In order to claim your place at the blogging table you must commit to making posts often—4 or 5 times a week perhaps. This commitment means that you are creating, updating, changing some portion of your site several times a week. The typical small business web site is lucky to receive an update several times a year. Search engines like change.
Wake Up Call
Because search engines love changing content, they are ever ready to visit a site when it is updated. One feature unique to blog software is something called a pinging. Basically, what you are doing is sending out a message to various blog directories to come and visit you site because it has been updated. Once a search engine has located your site, this is like a personal invitation to come back and get the new stuff. I use a site called Ping-O-Matic to send pings to multiple services. Some blog software can be configured to do this automatically.
Blogs also have a built in distribution method known as RSS. This allows you to push your updated content out to people who subscribe through an RSS reader such as Bloglines or FeedDemon as well as Yahoo and MSN. This ability allows you to communicate directly with subscribers but it can also help get your main site noticed and indexed by the major search engines. Yahoo, for example, allows people (including you) to subscribe to your blog’s RSS feed. On the day you create your blog, you can subscribe to it via a free MyYahoo account and Yahoo will visit and index your blog for free. It has no choice.
Linking Is Key
Part of the blogging culture is the predisposition to link to and from quality content that relates to the subject your are blogging about. In other words, bloggers like to link. Links from other high quality blogs will send traffic and get your blog and web site noticed.
So, your blog marketing strategy a little like this: Set-up a blog and start posting. Ping each time your make a new entry. Submit your blog to the major blog and RSS directories. Start looking for link partners. Repeat
In the last few weeks I set-up blogs for an attorney, a label manufacturer, and a remodeling contractor. In each case, the blogs were indexed and spidered by the major search engines within 48 hours. Traffic to the main web sites for these businesses (although a bit meager to start with) has already doubled or tripled. Traffic from each of the major search engines is now showing up for a large number of important search terms and phrases.
Who knows how long this blog traffic bonanza will last but at this moment a blog has never made more sense.
If you’re convinced that you need a blog but don’t want to hassle with setting it up and learning how to promote it properly, check out my basic blog coaching package. I do the work, you’re up and blogging and promoting your blog in a matter of days.
March 27, 2005
Technorati Tag: You're It
Technorati offer some very powerful tools the gain exposure for your blog. One of those tools is something called tags. Think of tags as a way to categorize your posts. Then, anyone visiting Technorati can perform a search that will turn up all of the posts for a certain category
Search on the tag Blog Advertising and you will find a post that I created and tagged for that term.
Visit Technorati and perform any tag search by putting - tag:yoursearchterm and you are on your way to finding a rich world of related blog posts. Do you see how this might help you gain additional exposure for your posts?
So how do you get tagging?
You must first sign-up and claim your blog at technorati. Then if you use a blog software that uses a category system, like Movable Type, WordPress, TypePad, Blogware, Radio you are all set. Just make sure that you create lots of keyword rich categories and post to those categories each time.
If you use another blogging software you can still tag by manually adding a little HTML to your post.
a href="http://technorati.com/tag/[tagname]" rel="tag">[tagname] with tagname being your category you want to use.
HTML shy? Here a neat little tool that will create your HTML for you. All you have to do is cut and paste it into your post.
Like this whole tagging idea. Here are three more sites you should start to learn about. I will write about each in detail soon. Think of using these sites to put the tagging idea into turbo.
Here's your extra credit assignment, check out - Furl, Delicious and Flickr