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November 28, 2008

Fun Friday Photos: Marcus Tandler, Daron Babin & Brasco at Search Bash San Jose '08

By Li Evans

With the cold weather now enveloping Pennsylvania, I wanted to step back and remember the warmth of summer and the fun of Search Bash at SES San Jose.  I went perusing the photos and found these three "hawt" guys and just knew this one was this week's photo.

This week's photo features Marcus Tandler, host of Webmasters on the Roof on WebMaster Radio, Daron Babin owner of WebMaster Radio and the ever reliable "Mr. Producer" who saved my butt when the battery on my phone use to die while I was hosting the DSC with Danny Sullivan.

Marcus Tandler, Daron Babin and George 'Brasco' Hernandez at Search Bash San Jose 2008

If you like this photo of Marcus Tandler, Daron Babin and George 'Brasco' Hernandez at Search Bash San Jose 2008, feel free to comment and favorite it on Flickr, Sphinn or Fetch this photo as that's how we'll be judging the photos at the end of the year! Check out the rest of the Search Bash San Jose 2008 photos, there's over 280 photos for you all to check out.

November 26, 2008

Online Marketing Tips Video: Keyword Research Concepts

By Li Evans

It's been a few weeks since I've had a Tuesday's Tips in Online Marketing Video, but I'm happy to say they are back!  Had a few issues with my laptop that screwed up the works for a while (it sat in Houston waiting to be repaired while that hurricane blew threw there), and then software issues, but finally I've got it mostly worked out!  So for a while at least we'll be having weekly videos, and they will be on Tuesdays.

This week's video focuses on Keyword Research and some common concepts people really overlook when they start doing their keyword research.  So check out this weeks tips on keyword research concepts great for SEO, PPC and even Social Media.

Full Keyword Research Concepts Video Transcript after the jump...

Continue reading "Online Marketing Tips Video: Keyword Research Concepts" »

November 24, 2008

PubCon 2008 Conference

By Chris Phillips

Pubcon-08-vegas Two of my fellow co-workers and I attended PubCon last week in Las Vegas, NY. It was my first time at PubCon, and my first trip to Las Vegas.

The Conference:
PubCon was a good time. It was set up to have several tracks you could attend so people of all levels and backgrounds (SEO, PPC, Webmasters, Online Sales etc.) had something to attend. Some time slots had several sessions that seemed interesting so it was hard to decide which session to attend. By day two I started going to the sessions that had the speakers I wanted to hear, and that seemed to work the best for me.

Some speaker’s presentations were a little too much like a sales pitch for my liking, but most speakers did a good job of presenting good information for the audience. Hopefully next year they will fix the Wi-Fi problem (for some reason the conference only supported 100 users at a time).

I found it interesting that there were several points of view sometimes between speakers on the same topic, which made it interesting. For example, Li Evans presented on how Barack Obama leveraged social media to win the election, and another speaker presented how John McCain’s link building efforts were successful, even if he didn’t win the election. No matter what your political view is, the fact remains that more and more of the general public is now becoming aware of the online community and how much of an impact it can have.

There were a lot of great people at the conference, some big SEO names, Greg Boser, Matt Cutts, Li Evans, Neil Patel, Barry Schwartz, Vanessa Fox, and some other big names from the 3 major search engines… (too many to list here). I really enjoyed meeting and socializing with other internet professionals.

Pubcon-08-vegas-2 My Takeaway:
I felt most of the speakers of PubCon seemed to speak in line with the general consensus by search marketing professionals: The internet is changing faster than ever. It seemed most speakers agreed we have moved away from just tracking rankings and moved towards quantifiable goals, conversions, etc.

Universal search has changed the search landscape already, and all aspects of universal search need to be addressed to fully take advantage of online opportunities. Social media continues to play a larger role in the search landscape year after year. Businesses and corporations need learn how to be accepted in these online social groups (not try to force their way in) in order to fully take advantage of social media. Successful social media campaigns can send several times the amount (and quality) of traffic to a website at the fraction of the cost of PPC or other types of advertising.

SEO and link building is still necessary, and is a key foundation to get your website to perform at its best. Tracking rankings has become a less effective way to measure success because search engines have incorporated local search features that display different results based on where an internet user is located, what else they are searching for, and more.

November 21, 2008

Fun Friday Photos: Geoff Livingston & His Velvet Elvis at SearchCamp Philly

By Li Evans

Back in September we held SearchCamp Philly in conjunction with PodCamp Philly and boy was it a heck of a lot of fun!  The audience was great, the speakers were awesome and the topics were really just right on target with online marketing and what webmasters and business owners could do with their sites.

The really nice thing about SearchCamp was that we had three people from Virginia and one from Texas come in and speak and help launch SearchCamp.  Giovanni Gallucci from Viewzi, SMG's own Simon Heseltine, Debbie Weil who's the author of the Corporate Blogging Book and last but by certainly no means least Geoff Livingston of Livingston Communications and the author of the book, Now is Gone.

Geoff's got this sticker on his lap top, it's very interesting, quite unique.  He calls it the "Velvet Elvis".  I even saw Maggie Fox commenting about it on Twitter the other day, and I knew then what my Friday Fun picture was going to be - Geoff and his Velvet Elvis at SearchCamp Philly.

Geoff Livingston & His Velvet Elvis at SearchCamp Philly 2008

If you like this photo of Geoff Livingston & His Velvet Elvis at SearchCamp Philly 2008, feel free to comment and favorite it on Flickr, Sphinn or Fetch this photo as that's how we'll be judging the photos at the end of the year! Check out the rest of the Search Camp Philly 2008 Photos, there's over 70 photos for you all to check out.

November 19, 2008

Women of Internet Marketing: Mary Bowling

By Julie Joyce

Fisher Towers Ladder(2) Welcome to the latest installment in the Women of Internet Marketing Series, featuring the (obviously) adventurous Mary Bowling from Blizzard Internet Marketing. Blizzard conducts marketing for hotels, resorts, and vacation rentals and has quite an impressive team of talent...with Mary being one of their senior SEOs and, most likely, the staff member most likely to climb Everest or dive with sharks.

Q: 2003 must have been a good year for SEO. That's when you and I both became involved in the field...ahem. What drove you to take the job at Blizzard?

A: I was bored, needed a new challenge and stumbled on the opportunity.

Q: What are your day to day responsibilities at Blizzard?

A: I specialize in Search Engine Optimization, not only optimizing client websites, but establishing best practices and processes and training others.

Q: You teach online courses, speak at conferences...where do you find the time to stay so involved?

A: I am so intrigued by SEO that I can’t help but do it.

Q: What did you do before becoming involved in SEO? Did you ever see yourself doing online marketing, or, like many others, did you simply kind of fall into it from something else?

Continue reading "Women of Internet Marketing: Mary Bowling" »

November 14, 2008

Fun Friday Photos: Motoko & Bill Hunt at the Zappos Party During Pubcon 2008

By Li Evans

I've got two favorite couples in this industry, Dave & Irma Wallace of SearchRank and Bill & Motoko Hunt.  Bill is 'the guy' at Global Strategies, and Motoko has her own Japanese Search Marketing Firm.  I caught them hanging out at the Zappos party at the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas, during Pubcon 2008.  These two really make me smile, how about you? :)

Bill & Motoko Hunt at the Zappos Party During Pubcon 2008

If you like this photo of Bill & Motoko Hunt at the Zappos Party During Pubcon 2008, feel free to comment and favorite it on Flickr, Sphinn or Fetch this photo as that's how we'll be judging the photos at the end of the year! Check out the rest of the Pubcon Las Vegas 2008 Photos, there's over 50 photos for you all to check out from throughout the year.

November 13, 2008

My Pubcon 2008 Highlights - Social Media Panels on a Short & Brief Trip

By Li Evans

Chris_winfield_and_david_wallace Pubcon 2008 was much like Pubcon 2007 for me, a brief whirlwind of networking, presenting and dinners.  Due to a pretty big workload, and wanting to make sure we keep our clients happy, Pubcon was a 1 1/2 day visit for me.  Pretty much a 36 hour on the ground trip.

I got to sit in for a session and present on Social Media & Search - a Love or War Story.

Of course I think it's a Love Story. :)

My other fellow panelists - David Wallace of Search Rank, Chris Winfield of 10e20 and Bill Hartzer of VizionInteractive , pretty much all agreed that it's a love story too.  David's presentation brough up the fact that many companies are quite there yet in believing in the Love Story of Social Media.  Chris highlighted the Love Story of Google and Digg, how there can be value if you have a good strategy in Digg, and you understand the workings of it.  Bill highlighted how feeds play a big role in Social Media and search, if anyone knows the ins and outs there, it's certainly Bill.  I highlighted that companies need a strategy, that you need to know who your audience is and where they are before you start.  I also said that in the future, search engines are going to be relying a lot more on social media sites for their signals of what's relevant, rather than so much emphasis on links.

The session before ours on Tuesday, was about Social Media:  The Big Sexy Buzz.  This panel had Warren Whitlock on it, who is a huge Twitter advocate and wrote the book Twitter Revolution, he brought up some great points about utilizing twitter, many this audience has heard and espoused themselves.  Guillaume Bouchard had some great data on Digg and how its changed since it did some major overhauling to its algorithm.  Kent Schoen from Facebook spoke about how businesses can utilize Facebook and Brian_carter_pony_pink_purse Brian Carter spoke about the "trifecta" of blogging + twitter + bookmarking.  Brian even gave out a free pony during his presentation, one in a cute pink purse.

Overall it was a great "quick trip".  I had plenty of hanging out time with Shashi Bellamkonda, who is the Social Media guru from Network Solutions.  Any time you have a chance to chat with Shashi at length take it!  He always gives me new perspectives on how to look at introducing social media as another channel of marketing to clients.

Also congrats to Geoff Livingston (who spoke on the session after mine and is a fellow Phillies fan) on his one year anniversary of the launch of his very successful book Now is Gone.  If you haven't read this book, go out and buy it now!  Geoff's another very insightful Social Media mind in the industry.

Since my trip was rather brief, I'm going to leave the rest of the highlight up to Chris Phillips, SMG's newest writer.  He's out there now probably partying it up at the Webmaster Radio Bash (the one thing I REALLY miss not being at!)

November 07, 2008

Fun Friday Photos: Liana Evans & Beth Harte Halloween Fun!

By Li Evans

For a change of pace, and a little fun, and to also show you I'm not totally camera shy, this week the picture wasn't taken by me. :)

Last Friday was Halloween and Beth Harte from the Harte of Marketing blog (and fellow IM-DV member) joined me at my local hangout where we had a bunch of fun with the local karaoke singers.  My friend Allan took this photo, Beth and I were Twittering from the bar, and we were posing here to make a point ... "This one's for your Mack Collier!" :P~


If you like this photo of Liana "Li" Evans & Beth Harte Enjoying Halloween, feel free to comment and favorite it on Flickr, Sphinn or Fetch this photo as that's how we'll be judging the photos at the end of the year! Check out the rest of the Fun Friday Photos, there's over 30 photos for you all to check out from throughout the year.

November 06, 2008

Pre-Gaming for PubCon & A Little About Me

By Chris Phillips

Hello, my name is Chris Phillips and this is my first post on Search Marketing Gurus. I work at Razorfish (Philadelphia Office) as an SEO Analyst (Click on my name to read more about me).

Pre-Gaming for PubCon
Chris-phillips I am really looking forward to going to Las Vegas for the first time, and attending PubCon. As you can see from this picture I live by the "work hard, play hard" mentality (Note: This picture was taken after 5:00 pm - I have witnesses).

When the opportunity came up to attend PubCon, I jumped for it. In the past I have attended other conferences such as SES New York '07 and SEOmoz Pro Training Series, but sometimes it is hard to stay for the after conference events.
This time I will be at PubCon all week so I can attend all the events.

My favorite part of search marketing conferences is the time after the conference where we have the ability to meet and have great conversations with other search marketing experts, so naturally I feel PubCon will be a good fit.

It's great to speak with other search marketing experts about the the projects they are working on, the issues they have run into and solutions they came up. I feel I usually learn more from conversations with other marketing professionals about dealing with real-world problems than I do from the conference itself.

If you see me at PubCon please stop me and say hi!

How I got here
At one of our monthly Internet Marketers of the Delaware Valley (IM-DV) meetings, Li asked me to start contributing on topics surrounding Website Architecture and SEO. I was honored to be asked to contribute to one of the top Search Marketing websites around.

My Role Here at Search Marketing Gurus
I will be contributing information relating to technical aspects of SEO. Topics will include issues that can block search engines from crawling your website efficiently, server side tips, coding and site structure best practices.

November 05, 2008

Barack Obama The First Social Media President?

By Li Evans

BarackObama.com After the Presidential WinYesterday was probably one of the most exciting days of this year, if not the past 4 when it comes to the possibilities of emerging media being pushed to the forefront and actually being a factor in something very important in not just our nation's history but quite possibly world history.  Yes, the United States elected its first African American president, but it also elected its first president to utilize technologies beyond email or a cell phone to office to just raise campaign donations.

Barack Obama is the first "Social Media President" in history.  He's the first one to understand and harness the power of sharing and communicating through social media platforms to not only get out his message, but to energize a group of Americans into action.  Of course it wasn't just Barack alone, it was his campaign team that focused in and realized the power and reach utilizing different aspects of web technologies could bring them.  It wasn't just one social media site used either, it was everything working in conjunction with one another, complementing each other and promoting the same singular message of the Change that can happen if people on these sites helped to elect Barack Obama president of the United States of America. 

One of my sources on the inside told me that it was some of the people who were on Dean's 2004 campaign team that came in and built upon what they knew, and that doesn't surprise me in the least.  Not only did they learn the power of the infamous "Dean Scream" hitting YouTube, but they learned the power of fundraising and brought that to the Obama campaign, improved on it and turned it into a finely tuned machine.  So much so that the majority of Obama's donations came from donors giving $200 and under.

So what kind of technology did Obama use? Let's take a quick, deep look at what was implemented.

Continue reading "Barack Obama The First Social Media President?" »

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