5 Most Common SEO Mistakes to Avoid

 Tuesday, November 02, 2010
 
Below are  the 5 Most Common SEO Mistakes to Avoid that Companies make with searches:

Mistake 1
Use Internal Jargon on your Website Rather Than Language Used by Your Reader Audience.
Many examples exist with companies that target terms such as “notebook computer” when the world is looking for “laptop computer,” or “senior living facility” when the world is looking for “nursing home.” Don’t fall prey to this common mistake. Instead, utilize your Web logs, as well as your site search logs, to identify the words your prospective customers are using to find your site. Use research from comScore, Hitwise, or even Google wonder wheel or the search engines themselves to identify keywords that are used most by searchers who are seeking your products or services.

Mistake 2 
Focus Your Search Engine Marketing Efforts on “BIG” Keywords and Ignore the “Long Tail” Keywords.
The Internet has been around for quite some time, and in most industries companies have been performing search engine marketing for a long time. As a result, those companies have a considerable head-start on their competitors. If you hope to rank high in the search results on “big” terms like “automobiles,” “insurance,” or “loans,”  you have about as much a chance of doing so as someone feeling they are a pro in search engine optimization when they are really just getting started. Instead, try considering the hundreds or thousands of keywords your research uncovers that offer you a more realistic chance of ranking highly, such as “used Dodge cars in Atlanta.” Such terms also reflect a more specific intent than the bigger, more ambiguous terms.

Mistake 3
Limit the Amount of Shelf Space You Occupy on the Search Results Page.
Just because you’ve achieved a top ranking within the “organic” search results on a given keyword term doesn’t mean you should just use that method of search engine optimization and not buy that keyword in the paid search engine market on that particular search engine. Studies have shown that by occupying more shelf space on the search engine results page (-through multiple occurrences on your Website) you increase the performance of both of those occurrences (SEM and SEO) versus what they would achieve separately. 

Mistake 4
Ignore the Relationship Between Search and Offline Conversions.
Without tracking the extent your prospects perform research online, but then ultimately buy offline, you can dramatically under value the extent to which search engine marketing plays a role in generating a return on your investment. (For Example if your target audience purchases by phone, catalog, or in a physical store location).  Be sure to have mechanisms in place to track purchases that were researched online, such as coupons that can be printed and brought to the store.  Also ask customers at the checkout counter if they researched their purchase online.  Another tangible measurement would be  to invest in a call-tracking solution that ties phone calls to search engine use.

Mistake 5 
Manage Your Search Engine Marketing Campaigns in a Vacuum.

No marketing channel operates in a vacuum. Messaging seen via one marketing or advertising channel causes actions to be taken on another, and nowhere is this truer than with searches made on the internet. In a study conducted by Jupiter Research for iProspect, 67% of online searchers were driven to perform a search as a result of exposure to some form of offline marketing – print ad, direct mail, TV, outdoor, etc. That’s why it’s is even more important for companies to make sure the keywords and messaging they use in their offline channels (as well as other online channels) is the same messaging they target with their paid and organic search engine marketing campaigns. If done consistently, when someone sees your print ad, direct mail, TV ad, or outdoor ad, and then performs a search, he or s he will find your Website, and not your competitors.

By avoiding these search marketing mistakes, companies will be able to stay ahead of the competition and achieve success with these ever-evolving challenging discipline online strategies.

DJ Heckes, Author & CEO
EXHIB-IT! Tradeshow Marketing Experts
www.exhib-it.com
Full BRAIN Marketing
www.fullbrainmarketing.com



Why Participate In Social Interactive Media?

 Monday, August 02, 2010
 
Stay in touch
If you are like me, and own and run a fast-paced business, you have lost touch with people over the years. You can look them up on popular social media sites and find them. If your network is profiled and linked, you will never lose them again. 

Be found
I cannot tell you how many times former friends, colleagues, and business associates have found my profiles on social media sites and have contacted me. A few years ago, one of my best friends from high school found me online and contacted me. What a thrill it was to
reconnect!  All those years were made up instantly within days and we are still connected and staying in touch.

Find candidates for jobs
You can use a social media network to e-mail the job requirements and ask for referrals. This allows you to tap into the minds of trusted online relationships to find passive candidates or people who are not currently actively seeking work, but may find your job requirements interesting and want to interview.  When we are looking to fill a position, I reach out in my networking social media community for referrals first.  I have always had great responses for interviewing candidates.  I have also helped other companies in my communities to find qualified candidates and sent referrals.

Look for a new job
If you desire to move on from your current employment for whatever reason, use social media sites to assist you in the job search.  I see this happening more and more especially with the economic changes over the past two years and the unemployment being at the level it is.

Establish your online brand
What do you want to say about you or your company? What expertise do you have to share? What accomplishments do you want to be known for? The information put in your profiles will eventually serve you well or not! When a potential customer Google’s your name or company name, will he or she find credentials and expertise that are credible? You will want to establish an online image before you really need it. Establishing this image, or what I also refer to as a sensory package, may take some time.

Join online groups that share your interests and profession

LinkedIn is a great example that allows you to create groups. I am a member of many groups ranging from online marketing, social media, business owners, and others. Following people on Twitter also yields content recommendations. Twitter groups have increased the scheduling of in-person meetings by encouraging people who are interacting online to meet face-to-face.

Develop online social connections over time on social media sites
MySpace and Facebook are sites that allow much more fun than the more professionally oriented LinkedIn. While both these sites started off for young people, participation by mature professionals has been on the rise. Be careful what is shared online, but do not doubt the power to expand relationships.

Provide a space for users of your products or services to interact with you
Customers want to have a conversation with you about their wants and needs. They want to tell you how to serve them better. Many of them want to build a community around products and services that they love. Give them an opportunity through blogs, online communities, forums, and the like and answer their comments. Be sure to use the feedback to improve your company. It is much easier in today’s online environment to zap a note off to you on LinkedIn or Facebook or to leave a comment on a blog than to write a letter to an anonymous company.

Build a community around your products and services
Is your company approachable? Are the people who work in the company approachable, likable, knowledgeable, and ready to listen? If not, be sure to find these types of employees and nurture them. They are the voice of your company. Forums and blogs on your company Web site and within other online community sites build a sense of community. These are your communication lifelines. Create and use them.

Establish a company presence on social media sites
According to the 2008 Cone Business in Social Media Study, 93 percent of Americans believe that a company should have a presence on social media sites. Also, 85 percent believe that these companies should use these services to interact with customers.

Before you go off on a tangent and start joining social media sites, be sure to join social media sites that matter to YOU and YOUR business. It can be overwhelming when first getting started in social media. I suggest you start with setting up the LinkedIn page, Facebook page, and a Twitter page. Remember, LinkedIn and Facebook need to be set up in your personal name, while Facebook company pages can be added and Twitter can be set up with using your personal name or a company name. 

I suggest you set up a personal page in Facebook and create a business page as an additional page so there will be two Facebook pages set up total. Send invites through already established customer lists you have gained throughout your business to allow the existing customers to follow your business on Facebook or Twitter.

Use LinkedIn to look up groups that you may want to join and start getting involved in the discussions and provide some discussion feedback to gain credibility. Invite only people you know to join in Facebook and LinkedIn. Follow only those you know, like, and trust in Twitter and spend some time getting involved in discussions. 

DJ Heckes, Author & CEO
EXHIB-IT! Tradeshow Marketing Experts
www.exhib-it.com
Full BRAIN Marketing
www.fullbrainmarketing.com



Why Participate In Social Interactive Media?

 Monday, August 02, 2010
 
Stay in touch
If you are like me, and own and run a fast-paced business, you have lost touch with people over the years. You can look them up on popular social media sites and find them. If your network is profiled and linked, you will never lose them again. 

Be found
I cannot tell you how many times former friends, colleagues, and business associates have found my profiles on social media sites and have contacted me. A few years ago, one of my best friends from high school found me online and contacted me. What a thrill it was to
reconnect!  All those years were made up instantly within days and we are still connected and staying in touch.

Find candidates for jobs
You can use a social media network to e-mail the job requirements and ask for referrals. This allows you to tap into the minds of trusted online relationships to find passive candidates or people who are not currently actively seeking work, but may find your job requirements interesting and want to interview.  When we are looking to fill a position, I reach out in my networking social media community for referrals first.  I have always had great responses for interviewing candidates.  I have also helped other companies in my communities to find qualified candidates and sent referrals.

Look for a new job
If you desire to move on from your current employment for whatever reason, use social media sites to assist you in the job search.  I see this happening more and more especially with the economic changes over the past two years and the unemployment being at the level it is.

Establish your online brand
What do you want to say about you or your company? What expertise do you have to share? What accomplishments do you want to be known for? The information put in your profiles will eventually serve you well or not! When a potential customer Google’s your name or company name, will he or she find credentials and expertise that are credible? You will want to establish an online image before you really need it. Establishing this image, or what I also refer to as a sensory package, may take some time.

Join online groups that share your interests and profession

LinkedIn is a great example that allows you to create groups. I am a member of many groups ranging from online marketing, social media, business owners, and others. Following people on Twitter also yields content recommendations. Twitter groups have increased the scheduling of in-person meetings by encouraging people who are interacting online to meet face-to-face.

Develop online social connections over time on social media sites
MySpace and Facebook are sites that allow much more fun than the more professionally oriented LinkedIn. While both these sites started off for young people, participation by mature professionals has been on the rise. Be careful what is shared online, but do not doubt the power to expand relationships.

Provide a space for users of your products or services to interact with you
Customers want to have a conversation with you about their wants and needs. They want to tell you how to serve them better. Many of them want to build a community around products and services that they love. Give them an opportunity through blogs, online communities, forums, and the like and answer their comments. Be sure to use the feedback to improve your company. It is much easier in today’s online environment to zap a note off to you on LinkedIn or Facebook or to leave a comment on a blog than to write a letter to an anonymous company.

Build a community around your products and services
Is your company approachable? Are the people who work in the company approachable, likable, knowledgeable, and ready to listen? If not, be sure to find these types of employees and nurture them. They are the voice of your company. Forums and blogs on your company Web site and within other online community sites build a sense of community. These are your communication lifelines. Create and use them.

Establish a company presence on social media sites
According to the 2008 Cone Business in Social Media Study, 93 percent of Americans believe that a company should have a presence on social media sites. Also, 85 percent believe that these companies should use these services to interact with customers.

Before you go off on a tangent and start joining social media sites, be sure to join social media sites that matter to YOU and YOUR business. It can be overwhelming when first getting started in social media. I suggest you start with setting up the LinkedIn page, Facebook page, and a Twitter page. Remember, LinkedIn and Facebook need to be set up in your personal name, while Facebook company pages can be added and Twitter can be set up with using your personal name or a company name. 

I suggest you set up a personal page in Facebook and create a business page as an additional page so there will be two Facebook pages set up total. Send invites through already established customer lists you have gained throughout your business to allow the existing customers to follow your business on Facebook or Twitter.

Use LinkedIn to look up groups that you may want to join and start getting involved in the discussions and provide some discussion feedback to gain credibility. Invite only people you know to join in Facebook and LinkedIn. Follow only those you know, like, and trust in Twitter and spend some time getting involved in discussions. 

DJ Heckes, Author & CEO
EXHIB-IT! Tradeshow Marketing Experts
www.exhib-it.com
Full BRAIN Marketing
www.fullbrainmarketing.com




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