Online Reputation Management

Online Reputation Management

In this day and age, the Internet has become such a huge part of people’s lives that one’s online presence becomes extremely important. This applies to individuals and businesses alike. When employers try to assess a potential hire, they look for the person on the Internet. When people encounter a new product or service, they try to look for reviews online. Potential dates or new friends will look at your social media profiles. Having no online presence is bad for your career and social life. Having a negative online presence is even worse.   Why You Need to Take Charge of Your Online Presence Online reputation is very malleable. It takes one negative post on a review site, or one scandalous outburst on social media and you will have to suffer through a very poor reputation both offline and online. Fortunately, it is this same malleability that can work in your favor, provided that you are willing to understand and protect your own reputation on the web.   Diagnosing Your Online Presence The first step in taking control of your online presence is assessing whether you have an online presence or not, and then diagnosing if it is positive or negative. This involves simply searching for your name, company name, or brand name on Google. But before you do this, you have to do the following to ensure that you get accurate results: Sign Out of Your Google Account – searching your name while signed on to a Google account will prevent you from getting a more objective view of your online presence, simply because Google personalizes local searches...
Everything You Need to Know About the Possum Update (We Bet You Didn’t Even Know It Was a Thing)

Everything You Need to Know About the Possum Update (We Bet You Didn’t Even Know It Was a Thing)

As those of you familiar with SEO know, Google is constantly rolling out new algorithms to keep us SEOers on our toes. The latest algorithm actually occurred September 2016, which makes its name even more fitting: Possum. Despite the fact that most digital marketing managers weren’t even aware that Google had released the Possum, the algorithm was so cleverly named by a group of marketers who got a kick out business owners’ confusion. You see, this newest algorithm hid Google My Business listings, or, rather, filtered them. While many business owners thought that their listings were just gone, they weren’t; they were just playing Possum. But what is Possum, and what does it mean for business owners?   The Update in a Nutshell As far as most marketers are aware, Possum only really affected the Local search results. Evidence indicates that Google rolled out the update in order to keep spam listings out of local search results, and to diversify the local listings. This is huge for small businesses everywhere that have constantly been pushed to the bottom of the results page thanks to big businesses with bigger marketing spend, and who want to know how to get on Google Maps results fair and square. Possum uses five known factors when filtering results: Distance of Device from the Place of Business Keyword Variation Location of Business Flexibility on Location to “City Center” New Algorithm for Local Results   Distance of the Device from Place of Business Have you noticed that when you type in “food near me” on your mobile device, the Google Maps search results constantly change the...
22 Insanely Brilliant Lead Generation Tactics to Use on Your Next Campaign

22 Insanely Brilliant Lead Generation Tactics to Use on Your Next Campaign

As marketers, we spend days—nay weeks—trying to come up with some new and clever way to market our products. We spend just as much time bringing our visions to life through content and other resources and will one goal in mind: to keep our businesses trekking along. While all that hard work is certainly par for the course, there are a few tricks that you can implement to give your next campaign a little more zazz—and, you know, to cut back on the hours you spend trying to come up with something innovative. Optimize Your Website   Implement Gated Videos Adding an opt in form to your videos will help you collect more emails for your mailing list. If someone wants to watch your video bad enough, they won’t hesitate to enter their email address.   Allow Readers to Download a Post in Exchange for an Email   Another great way to collect email addresses? Allow readers to download your best posts in exchange for their info. If you notice that a post that gets a lot of attention doesn’t necessarily result in any leads, this is a great option. It’s best used for directory posts, which readers can use over and over again for their own benefit.   Optimize Your About Page Many businesses don’t give their About Us or Team page enough credit, but people really do visit the page to learn more about a company they’re thinking of doing business with. Put a call-to-action on the page and watch what wondrous things it does!   Give Fewer Choices This may seem counterproductive—after all, don’t people like...
Link Building Tactics

Link Building Tactics

With a firm understanding of good and bad link building tactics, it’s time to discuss those that are right for you. How you choose to build links all depends on the resources you have at your disposal as well as the industry that you’re in. Industries that are more established and that have fierce competition will require more aggressive link building tactics, while newer industries that are still growing are full of opportunity to engage with like minds and industry insiders. With that in mind, here are a few tactics to think about when starting out on your link building endeavor.   Content-Based Link Building   Though we touched on link building tactics in the previous chapters, we feel that it’s an important enough topic to warrant its own chapter. The basic premise of link building is quality content, which can be an infographic, blog post, eBook, white paper, or even a video. You create these assets with link targets in mind so that, hopefully, they will connect with your content is such a way as to want to share it. Eventually, you should hope to reach a point at which you no longer have to ask for links. While this can take a long time to achieve, with commitment and perseverance, it will happen.   Guest Blogging   Guest blogging involves approaching other website owners to see if they would be willing to publish a piece that you write for their blog. While guest blogging is a great way to obtain links, Google has cracked down on bloggers who abuse this tactic by publishing low quality content jam...
The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of Link Building

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of Link Building

In the early days of link building, it was perfectly acceptable for SEOs to submit their articles to directories without any risk of being penalized by Google. Today, however, after the search engine became overrun with low quality webpages that were spammed with keywords, Google decided to change its rules. Out went the good old days of article submissions, and in was ushered there era of Penguin. In 2012, Google rolled out the Penguin Update, which was designed to catch and penalize websites that used spam link building techniques such as buying links or obtaining them through link networks. The ultimate goal of the update was to ensure browsers were landing on nothing but quality links with useful information.   Now, website owners and maintenance technicians must focus on quality link building techniques, which we will address here.   “Natural” Links = The Good   These links are the holy grail of links as they are they type that you didn’t even have to ask for—you simply earned them. Natural editorial links occur when other website owners link to your website simply because you provided valuable and authoritative information. When this occurs, you need to figure out a way to capitalize on that information by making large numbers of bloggers aware of it.   Unfortunately, natural links can take time to build, which is part of the reason they are so valued, along with the fact that they will stand the test of time. Google’s theory is that if you can get influential bloggers to notice you, link to you, and spread the word about you, you’ve sufficiently earned...
Outreach

Outreach

Finding Contact Information Once you’ve identified websites that might be interested in sharing your content, search for contact details. Most websites will not give you the contact information of the person you want to speak with, so it may take some digging to turn up the information you’re looking for. If you cannot find the direct contact information for the owner, content manager, marketing manager, or someone else of power, use the information provided to you on the website to start making your introductions. Explain your reason for reaching out (link building) and ask whom you should speak to in order to discuss it further.   Crafting Your Message   First and foremost, remember that you are contacting humans. Be personable and friendly, and don’t be afraid to be honest about why you’re reaching out. Which brings us to our next point: be direct. The people you are reaching out to are likely very busy and don’t have time for beating around the bush. When you craft your message, be polite, but also, get straight to the point. Tell them (briefly):   Why they should care about you; What action you’d like them to take; and What goals you’re trying to achieve.   As a blogger themselves, they understand the importance of link building, and if you’re genuine in your approach, they’ll have no trouble lending a hand.   Why They Should Care   When addressing the “why should we care about you?” question, keep their goals in mind. It’s not about you at this point—it’s about how you can help them. Remember your hooks from earlier? Use those....