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About Aaron Wall

Aaron Wall is the author of SEO Book, a dynamic website offering marketing tips and coverage of the search space, free SEO videos, and free SEO tools. He is a regular conference speaker, partner in Clientside SEM, and publishes dozens of independent websites.
Relevancy Chagnes at MSN, Yahoo, & Maybe Google

MSN Search Update

MSN announced they are upgrading relevancy and coverage. The increased coverage likely means that more inbound link sources are getting indexed. From looking at rankings of a few of my sites it looks like:

Building Your Attention, Traffic, Trust, & Subscriber Base

Some Things Only Spread Because Who is Behind Them

I recently created an Internet marketing mind map and published it on my tools subdomain with a link to it from tools.seobook.com, but nobody mentioned it. A few days later I blogged about it on SeoBook.com and dozens of webmasters linked to it. Same publisher, same content, drastically different results…because one channel has attention while the other does not.

Exploitation of Passion for Profit

Buying Attention & Building Trust

With content that you freely distribute you are primarily trying to build relationships with people who don’t know you and have never bought from you. Since attention is limited you have to make your content accessible to gain market attention.

Highbrow = Low Readership

Most potential buyers can not distinguish between great information and average information, but most people…

If Web Advertising Was Banned…
Ad Age’s A Sign of Things to Come? mentioned that the city of São Paulo banned outdoor advertising, and the movement is picking up steam elsewhere.

São Paulo made history by banning ads on billboards, neon signs and electronic panels, and now Rio de Janeiro is considering a similar measure.

Links or Content? Nope, Attention
WebmasterWorld recently had another debate on which is more important: links or content. But the debate is flawed. Links or content alone are just one type of asset. You might be able to profit from either for a while, but ultimately the real measure of relevancy and staying power is attention.

Brand Keywords Create Sustainable Profit Margin
The Microsoft AdCenter blog posted that 35% of top search queries are brand related:

Selling Information Will Become a High Touch Industry

Newspapers Going Free

The NYT just went free and likely the WSJ will follow. Once something goes free it is hard to start charging for it again – just ask Prince.

Sponsored Content Hosting and Renting Subdomains
Ads becoming content is not only true from a thin affiliate site perspective, but also on larger more traditional ad buys. Selling content hosting is going mainstream.

Publishers Will Become Interactive Media Artists

Books Are Losing Relevancy

Google and Amazon are both pushing to sell ebooks directly aggressively. An article in the NYT mentions a new device Amazon will offer for reading ebooks, but I don’t think the problem with books and ebooks is that they need a better reader.

Google now allows you to embed book pasages directly in web pages.

Interview with the Link Guru
While being much less self promotional than others in the same field, Debra Mastaler is nonetheless one of the most well known and creative link builders in the industry. I have wanted to interview her for a long time since she has a unique way of working but she’s hard to pin down and not very good about returning interview questions…

How long have you been doing link building? What did you do before link building?

Potential Typosquatting Lawsuits for Advertisers
Avi Wilensky, a friend of mine, recently got a cease and desist letter from Realogy Corporation because his Google broad match ads for Mark David NY ended up on a dirty Google syndication partner site.

(non)Value of Open Communities

Many web companies significantly profit from the appearance that they are open, but anything of value eventually needs to have some limitations placed on it. In spite of no longer having MovableType installed on this server, the mt-comments file is one of my most requested files. Registration moves you away from The Tragedy of the Commons to something more sustainable.

Google Gobbles up News Vertical

Late on Friday afternoon is a brilliant time for Google to announce a major change with their news service if they do not want people to talk about much. With their AP, Agence France-Presse, The Press Association in the United Kingdom and The Canadian Press syndication deals, Google claims they are improving duplicate detection, increasing listing variety, and as a net result they are sending MORE traffic to the people they signed syndication deals with.

Keyword Research, Competitive Analysis Google Gadget
I put my favorite keyword research tools and competitive research tools in a Google Gadget. Thanks to Jay at Widget Waker for making the original version with a sweet design, which I hacked up a bit to add a few more tools at the last minute.

If you use the iGoogle homepage you can add the tool to your homepage by selecting add by URL and then submitting this URL:
http://tools.seobook.com/google-gadgets/keywords.xml

Bad Marketing & Domain Names Kill Businesses
Perhaps this is a lawsuit as a marketing strategy, but recently a smaller private company sued BankRate for being a monopoly

Straw Man Marketing and Information Pollution
One of the easiest ways to get your message across is to be different and denounce a currently popular meme. Dan Thies recently referenced a person who is launching their marketing brand by calling the long tail crap. Even if they know what they are talking about with some forms of marketing it undermines their credibility to talk about search marketing with no appreciation for the tail.

Turning Content Into a Valuable Keyword List
One of the comments on the article I wrote for Wordtracker mentioned WordsFinder, which allows you to create a list of keywords from a piece of content. Their tool uses the Yahoo! Term Extraction Tool, and also provides a few additional keywords next to the results.

Three other easy ways to get similar information are

Organic Ranking Profits for Subsiding Paid Search Ads
Alan Rimm-Kaufmanhttp://www.rimmkaufman.com/ recently wrote an article about allowing your most profitable keywords to subsidize your less profitable ones. This strategy is obviously needed if you want to grow your business via search because you first have to create awareness before you create sales.

When is Publishing a Commodity?

As Google’s ad network gets more efficient and Google controls more bits, almost everything in any commercial market is going to sell something, subsidize another commercial interest, or have ads on it. To appreciate how much this trend will grow, just read the comments on my post about using custom search engines.

Would You Trust Business Domains Registered via Proxy?
Someone recently left a comment on my blog promoting a new keyword research tool that is registered via proxy. The competitive analysis keyword research tool has been marketed heavily via comment spam, and currently shows itself as bidding on 0 keywords, per its own competitive measures. The site gives no data about who owns it. Could it appear any less legitimate?

Unique Content Sources in Saturated Markets
Hamlet Batista commented on my last post that a problem with blogging is that many people look to the same sources for inspiration and information to blog about. Even in the most saturated markets there are a wide array of unique data sources. Here are some of my favorites: 

When Legal Has to Review Content…
Question: We have a multi-week turnaround on our content which makes it hard for us to write about fresh news. Is there an easy way to get past compliance, legal, and information only formatting requirements?

Answer: This is in no way legal advice, but here are a few ideas that might work…

How Likable is Your Niche?

In some dirty industries there are parallel markets/messages/ideas that have similar business models, but are loved and marketed as though they are pure and do nothing but improve the world.

An RSS Subscriber is Worth 1,000 Links
The type of people who subscribe to sites are also the type of people who write about that topic. If you have built up trust and a following your ideas spread faster than the competition. It builds on itself to the point where you can sell out in 8 minutes or 2 minutes.