Fast Five in Search – Week 7, 2014

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Hey folks! Fast Five is back for 2014. We’re doing things a bit differently this year. I’ll be taking over the posts from Sarah and I’ll be posting these on Mondays instead of Thursdays from here on.

That means you’ll be able to look busy at your desk while woofing down that breakfast bagel you grabbed on your way to the office and searching for a pen that actually works.

Simply bookmark our Fast Five category or make it your browser start page and you’ll have some tasty posts ready to read and get your marketing juices flowing the minute your PC or tablet starts up.

Here’s this week’s Fast Five:

1) Matt Cutts Has Declared Guest Blogging For SEO ‘Done’ by WebProNews. Apparently Head of Google’s Spam Team Matt Cutts took to his personal blog on Monday to warn against the practice of guest blogging for SEO purposes, declaring the tactic DONE. So if you are in the habit of guest posting, you might want to rethink that, or at least approach the process a little more carefully.

2) Why Guest Posting and Blogging is a Slippery Slope by Moz. Shortly after Matt’s blog post, Moz came out with a White Board Friday vid dedicated to the same subject. Check it (and Rand’s beard!) out here:

3) Alltop by Various. Not a specific post, but just a reminder about this very useful news aggregator that collates all the top blog posts and news stories in tech, work, health, culture, sport and other subjects on an hourly basis. Very handy to find trending topics for new blog fodder or research a particular niche for link building purposes.

4) Do You Love Your Customers? by Seth Godin. This post by Seth caught my eye on my regular fly-by his blog because of a similar discussion I was having with a client recently. Seth says that there are two distinct reasons why companies claim to love their customers and only one involves money. The kicker is that customers can tell the difference! So next time you claim to love your customers, make sure it’s not just because they pay you.

and finally… not really search news, but definitely tech:

5) Flappy Bird is Gone From the App Store by TechCrunch. Yes, millions of people awoke today to the shocking news that the frustratingly addictive Flappy Bird iOS and Android game has been removed from the App Store by it’s developer Dong Nguyen of Vietnam. Nguyen cited “I just can’t take it anymore” as his reason for removing the game, presumably because he couldn’t navigate those darn birds through pipes any better than the rest of us.

But never fear – some clever clod has developed a clone called Flappy Doge. (screenshot below) The only differences? Scary looking corgies and dodgy spelling. You don’t even need a mobile device to play. Hoorah!

Flappy DogeHappy clicking!

*Image courtesy of Threadless.

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Fast Five in Search – Week 45, 2013

fast-fiveIt’s that time of the week already and we’ve got a great Fast Five selection for you. Enjoy!

Hummingbird’s Unsung Impact on Local Search by David Mihm
If you’re targeting local markets in your search strategy you might want to check out this post by David, as according to his initial research, Google’s Hummingbird update has had an impact on local search results.

Panic Stations! A Case Study on How to Handle an Important Page Disappearing from Google by Steve Morgan
I know I say this a lot, but this is a great post to bookmark. Like Steve, many of us have never personally experienced this phenomena – but if it does ever happen, we’ll want easy access to all the helpful info in this post – including the great resource links.

4 Post-Penguin Link Building Tactics Every Company Should Be Doing by Jayson DeMers
Google has ensured Webmasters treat link building as a qualitative process rather than quantitative. Here Jayson describes four types of Backlinks which are highly beneficial, following the various algorithm changes and Google updates over the past few years.

Google Promises More Accurate Results with New Google Trends Topic Reports by Matt Southern
This week Google announced a new addition to Google Trends which will provide more accurate topic reports. Predictive text now appears when users begin typing a search term, which helps further clarify the request/results.

And finally…

Building Brand Identity – Five Reasons Your Blog Needs a Ghostwriter by Enzo F Cesario
Are you finding it hard to maximise the benefit of your company blog? Enzo puts forward some great reasons why a Ghostwriter might be the answer to your fresh content woes.

Happy reading!

*Image courtesy of Threadless

 

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Fast Five in Search – Week 44, 2013

fast-fiveThis week’s Fast Five includes the secret to utilizing the full powers of Excel, the latest changes to Google’s AdWords and the rumour that banks may start using your social media profile to determine your credit rating!

Automate Your SEO Reporting by Exporting Your Leads into Excel by Brian Harnish
If reporting conversion results to clients is on your monthly to-do list – this article’s for you. Brian includes links to programs he finds helpful and his step by step guide to running a macro program within Excel is well worth bookmarking.

Web Psychology – Whiteboard Friday by Nathalie Nahai
Nathalie Nahai is a web psychologist and in this Whiteboard Friday post, she explains how online behaviors are shaped and can be influenced using three simple strategies.

Google Introduces Change To AdWords: Pay By Viewable Impression CPM Bidding by Matt Southern
Google rolled out a major change to AdWords this week by introducing CPM bidding by viewable impressions. This is seen as a step up because unlike the traditional model of served impressions, advertisers won’t be charged unless the Ad was actually viewed by the end-user.

How to Train Fresh Graduates for Your Internet Marketing Agency by Matt Goulart
This is a short handy guide to initiating new graduates (even if they’ve specifically studied PPC and SEO) into the real world of online marketing.

And finally for something a bit different…

How Social Media Monitoring Impacts Reputation Management by Jean Dion
This article will totally change the way your view your social media and financial transactions! Banks are starting to check social media profiles when determining credit ratings! Talk about Brave New World!

Happy reading!

*Image courtesy of Threadless

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5 Must-Have Spreadsheets For Online Marketing Professionals

I_love_spreadsheets_hatAs an online marketing consultant and trainer for the past 15 years, I have used a LOT of online tools to help me do my job.

I’ve seen time-saving tools come and go in crazy peaks and troughs. I’ve also seen a few that have ridden the waves of consumer fascination to become permanent fixtures in the online marketer’s toolbox.

Below are 5 spreadsheet-based tools that I use myself or recommend on a regular basis:

1) Distilled’s MS Excel for SEOs – This Excel-based workbook is like a detailed instruction manual for SEOs on how to manipulate bulky data into logical form using Microsoft Excel. If you are an Excel wizard, you’ll love this tool. If not, you’ll probably need a week to wrap your head around the analysis, but it will be worth it – I promise.

2) HubSpot’s Blog Editorial Calendar Template – If you are a content curator or social media marketer, this template will save your life. It simplifies calendar-based content allocation and helps you prioritize content deadlines and build an annual strategy to meet multiple marketing campaign objectives.

3) Shimon Sandler’s PPC Campaign Kick-Off Template – this Excel template is quite a few years old now, but I still use it as a starting point when kicking off a new AdWords or Bing Ads campaign for a client. It helps you and your client to focus on the big picture objectives and build a unique campaign to suit specific requirements rather than implementing a cookie-cutter PPC campaign that needs tweaking to fit.

4) Google SEO Rank Checker Spreadsheet – a recent discovery, this customizable Google Docs template is all kinds of awesome. It includes a clever integration of ImportXML that allows you to collect at-a-glance keyword rankings on Google in real time.

5) Outspoken Media’s Link Building Spreadsheet – another Google Drive shared doc, this is a customizable template consisting of a gigantic list of link building strategies collated by Rhea Drysdale and her team at Outspoken Media.
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Fast Five in Search – Week 43, 2013

fast-fiveIt’s all about creative content and user experience in this week’s Fast Five. Enjoy!

Learn to Write Blog Headlines Search Engines Love: Five Tips by Natalie McCatty
Only 20 percent of people read beyond the headline  – so we need to make sure it’s good! Natalie explains why knowing your keywords, audience, and main message is essential for a good headline.

Creating an Experience for Your Product by Eric Covino
This is a great post to get us thinking about the total user experience we’re creating around our brand. Eric provides suggestions, examples and resources to illustrate his point.

Stop Thinking Keywords, Think Topics by Kate Morris
SEOs still need to provide keyword research reports or keyword ranking reports, but should we be changing what’s in them? Given all the changes to Search in the past few years, are we focusing on the wrong data?

Why Visual Assets > Infographics – Whiteboard Friday by Rand Fishkin
In Rand’s latest Whiteboard Friday he talks about why he loves visual assets, but can’t stand infographics.

And finally…

How Well-Planned Content Can Get You Better Marketing Results by Krystian Wlodarczyk
This is a great post about the importance of great content and how to keep generating it. Krystian says educational content is particularly important because of its ongoing value. Well worth referring to when you need inspiration for your next blog post!

Happy reading!

*Image courtesy of Threadless

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