Latest Charities to Receive Free SEM Training

If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you would have seen that Search Engine College launched a free search engine marketing training initiative earlier this month for charities and not-for-profit organizations worldwide.

If you missed the announcement, we’re offering 25 charities per year the opportunity to learn search marketing skills at no cost, to help them make the most of their limited marketing budgets.

Our 3 latest recipients of free search marketing courses are:

1) National Heart Foundation of New Zealand – a not-for-profit, non-government organisation that funds research and promotes heart health in order to reduce the rates of cardiovascular disease in New Zealand.

2) Centre for Alternative Technology – a UK based organization offering solutions to some of the most serious challenges facing our planet and the human race, such as climate change, pollution and the waste of precious resources.

3) Honoring Emancipated Youth (HEY) – HEY’s mission is to strengthen and connect San Francisco’s systems of support for Bay Area foster care youth so that all youth emancipating, or “aging out” of the foster care system can enjoy a healthy transition to adulthood.

Those are three very worthy not-for-profits and we are delighted to be able to offer their staff a free course.

If you know of a charity or not-for-profit that might benefit from a pro-bono course, please encourage them to get in touch and spread the word by linking to this post.

Thanks!

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Search Engine Wiki Comes Out of BETA

Did you know that Search Engine Wiki – the world’s first vertical wiki dedicated to search engines and search engine marketing is now two years old? It’s true!  To celebrate, we’ve taken the site out of BETA and given it a facelift.

Long time readers of this blog will remember when we first launched the site back in November 2007. The idea behind Search Engine Wiki is to provide a collaborative online library of search engine marketing (SEM) resources.

We’ve been spending a lot of time on Search Engine Wiki lately, adding new resources and checking for broken links. We’re particularly proud of our comprehensive list of worldwide search engines and directories, categorized by country and region.

Our list of Australian search engines has just been updated this week, so if you run link building campaigns for Australian clients, you might want to pop your head in there and make sure their sites are listed in all of them. We’ll be making a post here soon featuring all the new Australian search engines and directories.

Another popular section of Search Engine Wiki is our Niche Search Engines category. In here you’ll find lists of search engines and directories categorized by niche, industry or theme e.g. weddings, business, travel or government.

So if you haven’t visited Search Engine Wiki for a while, now’s a great time to pop in. It’s a community wiki, so if you have additional search engines, tools or resources to add, we’d welcome your contributions.

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First Recipients of the Free SEM Training Initiative

As we posted earlier this week, Search Engine College has launched a free search engine marketing training initiative for charities and not-for-profit organizations worldwide.

We’re offering 25 charities per year the opportunity to learn search marketing skills at no cost, to help them make the most of their limited marketing budgets.

Thank you to everyone who tweeted and blogged about our offer, word has spread very quickly and we’ve been inundated with requests from all over the world!

As well as announcing the recipients as they are decided, we’re going to publish a small blurb about each recipient charity/NFP and a link to their web sites so you can learn a little more about them, spread the word about their charitable work or maybe even get involved yourself.

Our first recipients of pro-bono search marketing courses are:

1) Sandblast and the Free Western Sahara Network – Sandblast works in support of the forgotten Saharawi refugees.  The UK charity evolved out of a 14-year relationship and involvement with the Saharawi refugees in South West Algeria.

2) Edinburgh Voluntary Organisations’ Council (EVOC) – is a local organisation, which helps to support, develop and promote the interests and work of voluntary and community organisations in Edinburgh, Scotland.

3) Science Alive – a non profit organisation in Christchurch, New Zealand, focusing on science and technology education.

That’s 3 down and 22 to go – congratulations to you all!

If you know of a worthy charity or not-for-profit that might benefit from our courses, please direct them to this post, or tweet it to spread the word.

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Q and A: I want a career in SEM. Where should I start?

QuestionHello Kalena

I enjoyed reading your web site and blog today. I was recently laid off and am interested in pursuing the SEM field. Where would you recommend I start?

I have 30 years of marketing, public relations, broadcast production, journalism (newspaper columnist), publishing (owner/editor of niche market magazine)… plenty of transferable skills I think. I also developed two web sites, produced several radio and TV shows and through it all I have excellent copywriting and proofreader skills.

Thanks much! Wish I could meet you in Sydney!

Susan

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Hi Susan

First up, I think your idea to start a career in Search Engine Marketing is timely and sensible given the current economy and global demand for search marketing staff. Reading my article 11 Reasons Why You Should Consider a Job in Search Engine Marketing should get you fired up even more about the idea.

It sounds like you have a lot of skills that would translate nicely to a job in the Search Engine Marketing field. Journalism and copywriting especially will come in handy for writing blog posts and optimized page copy or PPC ads. But there is quite a technical side to SEO and PPC that you will need to study and gain experience in before you’re ready to take on client projects or apply for a job in the field.

There are plenty of SEM training options to get you prepared for the industry, including *cough* Search Engine College *cough*, but you should also start practising on your own sites and others as soon as possible. Hands-on experience is essential to competency in the field.

Best of luck and do pop back and let us know how you get on. If you do happen to get to SMX Sydney, make sure you say hello.

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Q and A: How many ad groups should a single PPC campaign have?

QuestionHi Kalena

This probably isn’t black or white, but in general, Is it bad to have one AdWords campaign with (50) ad groups? I would think if you need that many ad groups, you should probably be putting some of those groups into their own campaigns.

Also, isn’t is best practice to delete keywords from Ad Groups that have no impressions/clicks for 3 months? Thanks you!

Staci

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Hi Staci

There’s no hard and fast rule about the limit of AdGroups each Google AdWords campaign should have, but there is a knack to good account organization. You need to set up your campaigns so they are manageable and logical.

For example, set up a new campaign for each specific geographic market you wish to target, or perhaps for each product line you are promoting. The key is to create as many AdGroups as you need in order to silo each of your keyword themes into their own AdGroup, for example blue socks, red socks, wool socks, nylon socks etc.

You need each of these in their own AdGroup so that you can create ads that are specifically targeted to each theme and use the specific keywords and phrases within the ad headline and body. If it makes sense to have 50 AdGroups in a single campaign for this purpose, then so be it.

Regarding the deletion of keywords, if they aren’t attracting any impressions then yes, delete them. But if they’re getting impressions and no clicks, I would tweak the ads for a month or two before deleting them as the problem may be that the ads aren’t convincing enough.

When I kick off a new PPC campaign, I create a large number of creatives and then If they don’t attract conversions within 2 months, I delete the non-performing ads and gradually pause any that have a 2 percent or lower conversion rate.

Hope this helps

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