Thursday, August 21, 2014

What link building tactics do you use?

Is link building  dead?

in short link building is not dead, and will not die any time soon!

That being said we do need to understand the many issues that surround link building, and the implications of your personal link building strategies.  In the past when things in search first started out links were the primary SEOVI (Search Engine Optimisation Value Indicator) and links were gamed to the extent that Google and other search engines started showing very distorted and poor SERP's (Search Engine Results Pages)
The search engines thus introduced algorithms that started to look for patterns that these so called BLACK HAT search engine optimisation practitioners were using, and started penalizing those who they thought were cheating or gaming the system.  Google now has a number of NAMED ALGORITHMS , as well as many un-named algorithms,  that look into these matters and related matters where Search Engine Optimisation Technical staff and online marketing practitioners SPAM the search engines in a variety of different ways using many different techniques.

Some of these named algorithms include :


These algorithms help to improve the SERP's (Search Engine Results Pages) and some are punitive, while others add value to the work of those who apply recommended tactics that are rather technical and difficult to implement, such as Google's author and publisher programs that are connected to Google plus.

This short video below will help you understand why I say that link building will not die any time soon, but link building has changed and it is now necessary to selectively screen out bad links and focus exclusively on high quality links from reputable sources when ever possible.  The question asked was does Google have a version of search where back links are excluded.  listen to what  +Matt Cutts had to say then evaluate your own situation.

The question thus becomes  What is link building and why is it important?

In short links, some times called HYPERLINKS are the tools that you use to allow  the end user, or your audience to move from one place on the internet to another, and are the only tool that search engines have of locating your online content.  If there are no links pointing to your page, then a search engine has no means of locating your page, and it will thus never be found in search.  In the past the more inbound links a page had the better it did in search results.

Link building is the process that you follow to ensure that your web pages or blog posts acquire in bound links, be they internally from   pages within your own web site /  blog or externally from some other online resource.

Today, due to the amount of SPAM generated by so called BLACK HAT SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION this is no longer true, and Google as well as all other search engines now use the quality of links more than the quantity of links.  Then  within Google search there is the issue of PANDA and PENGUIN  which both have negative or punitive tools that tackle SPAM and bad quality web pages

It is thus important that you understand the  need to have a link building policy in place, and that this link building policy needs to be well documented and shared with every person who has anything to do with your total marketing plan.  Bad links can come from a number of sources, and those who do not know about these issues can very inadvertently make use of a link building farm or some other bad tactic, thinking that they are helping your marketing efforts.   New employees or  junior marketers who have not been exposed to the impacts of bad links may not understand what a link farm is, and believe they are being helpful in getting traffic to your pages.


The social media is currently a very big source of links to your online content, and as such you do need to have a social media policy in place to deal with these issues. Once again Your social media policy needs to be well documented and shared with everybody who has anything to do with your marketing, be it online or not.  You need to remember that all your offline marketing has a very big impact on your online marketing in many ways, especially when it comes to issues around search. You will need to include your link building policy within your social media marketing policy,as they are very interconnected.

Off line marketing has strange impacts on your intended target audience, and this is where you should use terminology and language that is specific to your business interests.  Your target audience will be induced to use the words and language in your off line marketing to search online to discover more about your company, your products or your services, and you need to be aware of this in your online marketing, especially in your social media marketing, as this is where you will have direct one on one conversations with your target audience as well as many others who may or may not have a direct interest in your product, service or business proposition.

The people who you have conversations with online within the social media space, may or may not decide to place links within their posts to your web pages or blogs, and as such you need to influence these OUT SIDERS in a positive manner so that any links that they may place within their social media posts are positive and  relevant to pages within your web site or blog.

These issues are also confounded and confused when marketers say that you should not be doing any link building at all.  Link building as a term is also a very difficult term to come to grips with in the current scenario where past link building practices have destroyed web sites through their spam attacks and the use of link farms.  Link building has definitely changed a great deal over the last few years, and is now a very delicate art that is not properly understood.  On the one hand an online resource must have inbound links, these links need to be of high quality and carry some authority to have any success in the SERP's (Search Engine Results Pages) and on the other hand excessive links as well as links of low quality can cause a web site or blog some serious damage within the SERP's.

The guys at +Moz recently published an article called The beginners guide to link building   which I have found very helpful, and shared with my audience in other places.  The G+ post embedded below is actually what inspired this post, as I commented there  and had an interesting conversation with both  +Mike Gracia and +William Rock   Take some time and read the comments as I believe they will help you to understand the great difficulties that we as online marketers have in dealing with the changes in SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) issues as well as how different people interpret the terminology within the  search engine optimisation world.  Please remember that these are sensitive issues, and need great care, so ask for second and third opinions, then apply your own mind and be aware of those who are willing to game the system.


Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Why Should people connect with you?

Why Should people connect with you?

This is a very powerful and important question that all business owners need to answer, and they do need to be honest to the point of being brutal when they answer this question.

Online marketing is a very complicated affair, and there are so many different aspects that one needs to get under control, that it is very scary for all small business owners. There is so much help online for each segment, that it boggles the mind, and confuses the issue even more.

So where does one start with these issues?

Start with documenting your business purpose, aims and objectives, then evaluate these and compare them with your current marketing efforts, and understand what this means for your target audience.  Are you chasing the numbers, or are you trying to have a conversation with your audience?

If you are chasing the numbers then your audience will see this and ignore you, how ever if you are trying to have a conversation with your audience, they will interpret this and respond appropriately.

People will connect with you if you give them the opportunity, and respond appropriately when they take up your offer. Its kind of like walking down the street, if you avoid eye contact with every body and look the other way,  why should they stop and speak about the weather.  On the other hand if you look at people and greet them, then perhaps you may be able to strike up a conversation and discuss the weather,  a local event or some other common issue.  If you are all salesy and just push your self onto people and start talking about a product you want to sell, asking then to buy your stuff, then most will also ignore you and walk on past, or even worse call some back up and get you chased out of their space, and if you are in a shopping mall call security and get you turfed out of the building.


Being online is no different to life in the real world when it comes to behavioral issues, and trying to connect  online has the same principals and issues as trying to connect with people in real life as this short video (just under half an hour) with +Jason T. Wiser  and +Yifat Cohen explains quite well
This video is part of Jasons HOA's that he holds to promote his business interests, actually  highlights some of the related issues.   Watch the video and enjoy the feeling that you get when things fall into place so that you have a better understanding of why your target audience would want to connect with you.
Once again #FUFISM or Functional User Friendly Integrated Social Media is all about using the social media as a communication tool to integrate all your marketing into one solid well oiled marketing machine, so think carefully about why your target audience should connect with you within the social media space and do what needs to be done so that your target audience feels comfortable connecting with you within the platforms that you make available to them, and that you respond to the attempts that your audience makes to interact with you.