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Beyond Traditional SEM

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2006 brought us strategies in online marketing that went beyond traditional SEM tactics.

In 2007 these latest tactics will become the bare minimum; in this article I will mention a few items that I think businesses should really take advantage of.

Visibility on the internet can now be achieved through Social Bookmarking, RSS (Feed Management) and Blogging rather than just search engines. This is not to say search engines aren’t important anymore, rather, you should know there are many more short term options available. These options all revolve around the exposure of content through syndication and sharing which basically allows anyone to capitalize on these opportunities.

Blogs

In my opinion, Blogs are a great compliment to any website. When done correctly they are written from more of a human perspective which makes them very appealing for visitors to read. Blogs can serve different purposes for varying websites, here are some examples:

  • Support Based Website – Get a few of your support technicians to resolve frequently asked questions in detail as well as talk about upcoming product enhancements. This does a few things for your business: It creates a community feel where your customers can go to find answers to their issues, it allows for marketing of your latest product releases and it reduces support time for issues that can be answered via the blog.
  • Service Based Website – Encourage your senior frontline team members to become thought leaders in your industry by getting them to create their own blogs. In the Search Marketing industry you will often see analysts blogging in order to establish themselves as an authority in the industry and to add further credibility for their organizations.
  • Sales/Marketing Website – A blog is a great way to spread the word about your product or service. It allows for your sales/marketing team to talk directly about the benefits of your company’s product and furthermore converse with visitors in order to begin the process of converting them into customers.

RSS Feeds (Content Syndication)

Content rich websites such as news portals and forums are driven by visitors reading and subscribing to the information. Setting up an RSS feed is crucial in gaining the broadest range of subscribers. Here is how RSS can benefit your business:

  • Adding a link to an RSS Feed on different sections of your website provides users with feed readers a personalized way to view the content. By providing snippets of code entices users to click through to your site.
  • For visitors not accustomed to feed readers you can offer RSS subscriptions via email (providing them with daily updates to your latest content).
  • Services like FeedBurner gives you the ability to manage your RSS feeds and create separate URLs for all these RSS feeds. These new web pages are content rich and get indexed in search engines quickly creating more visibility for your business. (See
    http://feeds.feedburner.com/webanalyticsworld).
  • Webinars and Conferences which are offered in audio/video formats can also be incorporated into RSS feeds. Users can subscribe to these types of RSS feeds & Podcasts through software such as iTunes and Juice.

  • You can also incorporate Ads such as Google Adsense within your feed allowing you to potentially make revenue through your RSS Feed. I recommend this be implemented with some testing because some users may be “turned off” by the ads.

Social Bookmarking/Content Sharing

Content sharing and promotion through sites such as Digg, Delicious, Reddit and Technorati was an extremely hot topic in 2006 (this is closely related to the Social Bookmarking concept). With hundreds of categories and a wide range of users, businesses can advertise their latest product releases and news items before the pages even get indexed in search engines. The process is quite simple but being successful requires some effort. Here are some basic guidelines:

  • Set up an account at Digg or Delicious, this will take less than a minute
  • You can then proceed to submit your most interesting pieces of content to these services

  • Don’t submit every single content item because everything is not worthy of being submitted. Other users vote for submissions (so they build authority) therefore you don’t want to gain a bad reputation. This type of viral marketing can have both negative and positive effects.
  • Think of interesting titles and descriptions for your submissions, this will entice user to click through to your website (be honest and be creative).
  • Make sure to submit your content to the appropriate categories.
  • Don’t give up because it does require some practice and testing

2007 will bring new ways to promote your business and in order to harness these methods it will require everyone to quickly get up to speed on the latest concepts. However, don’t forget to take advantage of the services already available because they provide some great opportunities for online success.

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Manoj has been working in the search engine marketing industry since 2002. He started out as a software developer but now provides in-depth web site analysis using web analytics.

http://www.enquiro.com

Manoj is also the author of Web Analytics World. Web Analytics is an essential component in developing a successful
online campaign. Help convert visitors into customers by understanding
them.

Beyond Traditional SEM
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About Manoj Jasra
Manoj Jasra is an online marketing veteran of almost 10 years who specializes in analytics, social/search strategy and mobile marketing. Manoj is currently a Sr. Strategist at one of Canada's largest Telecommunications Companies, Shaw Communications Inc., where he leads Social Media, SEO, PPC and Web Analytics strategies. Manoj first started in the search marketing industry with Enquiro Search Solutions, where he spearheaded web analytics, SEO Training and the development of cutting edge search marketing solutions for clients.

Manoj is a Professional Speaker having participated at events such as Emetrics, Web Analytics Xchange, WebTrends' Engage, Internet Marketing Conference, Social Media Innovation Summit and Search Engine Strategies. He authors Web Analytics World (a top 100 Online Marketing Blog) and consults through his firm Jasra Inc. WebProNews Writer


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