Yesterday I enthusiastically described how impressed I was with SEOmoz’s advanced internet marketing seminar in my recap of MozCon Day 1. Day 2 was equally packed with awesome marketing strategies and tactics that we SEOs could take home and start implementing immediately into our online marketing campaigns. Also be sure to also check out my recap of MozCon Day 3, which was just as filled with ground-breaking crucial new information as the first 2 days.
Here are some takeaways from Day 2.
Earn Outsized Returns from Paid Search
William Leake, Apogee Results (@marketing_bill)
William talked about the importance of Integrated Search Methodology and how instead of putting all the eggs into the big battleship website you should be focusing on managing small crafts and work with an ecosystem of sites. Get above the fold and then run three horses in the race rather than one.
- Google is an elephant. Very smart, but elephants kill people accidentally. When a Google policy changes it can kill you sometimes. Don’t depend on one marketing channel; it’s very risky. Diversify, spread your eggs into multiple baskets, do SEO, PPC, Social, email, etc.
Stefan Weitz, Bing, (@stefanweitz)
Search engines are dumb. You can’t search for what you’re really looking for. People want to move from “search and find” to “search and do.” Humans, due to exploration, figure out, draw a conclusion, and try using it. The challenge for search engines is to understand this, plus data structure, plus then draw conclusions.
Schema is a collaboration between Google, Bing and Yahoo. Schema is a markup that helps tell search engines what your content is about so you can give information about different objects on your website with it. It needs to be extended but there is no guarantee search engines will use your extensions. Structured data helps search engines understand the world, what things are, characteristics, enable them to connect actions and what you can do with them.
Schema.org’s workshop on September 21st in Silicon Valley will focus on discussion about options and how to best incorporate them and make them work for publishers and the search engines.
Microformats are working well now, but for the future we should be focusing on Schema.
Long Tail SEO in a Post-Panda World
Matthew Brown, AudienceWise (@MatthewJBrown)
Matthew covered so much about post-Panda strategies and approaches that I am still digesting it all. Some of his advice: Useful content is a risk. Only great content isn’t. Put not-so-great content on sub domains and combine long tail keywords in a single page can then rank better for more keywords. Watch your ad-to-content ratio, content below the fold, site speed. He talked about the New York Times study, Six Personas of Online Sharers, and the importance of finding creative ways to include sharing. Get started with structured data. Best Buy implemented RDFa and saw an over 30% increase in organic traffic.
The future is Linked Data, a web of things, not just documents. With it we can combine and query different data types. BBC is ahead of the game by having everything in an RDFa database and creating dynamic content. Make “unique” content by using your own data with Linked Open Data. With Linked Data and the long tail, everyone is a winner.
Paid+Organic: Better Together
Melanie Mitchell (@MelanieMitchell)
Melanie stressed what we all already know but so many of us still don’t implement: SEO and PPC work best together. You’ll get higher CTR and brand recognition. Melanie introduced a solution that included using a Search Scorecard to help pull data together, as well as understanding how SEO data can be used in PPC and vice versa, and how to focus your efforts. The key is to understand your customers and their behavior. Let the data do the talking for you when a client doesn’t want to do PPC for brand words. Document and do testing.
How to Earn the Links the Lazy Link Builders Buy
Wil Reynolds (@wilreynolds)
I didn’t know Wil until now and wow, he truly impressed me! I will be going through my notes and his presentation many times. Everyone else I talked to from the MozCon crowd was very impressed with Wil’s presentation as well.
Will focused on how to get those links “they” get with black hat tactics, while keeping our hats white/white-ish. He threw so many awesome ideas and examples at us that after the session no one could have any excuses for even thinking about buying or getting links using other black hat tactics. The main point is to think and be creative.
Oyster Hotels: A Case Study in SEO
Eytan Seidman, Oyster Hotels (@eytanseidman)
Eytan presented a really nice case study about how and why Oyster Hotels, became one of the most successful travel startups, incorporating competitor analysis and Oyster’s strategy, along with lessons learned.
Leveraging Community for SEO + Social Boosts
Kristy Bolsinger, Ant’s Eye View (@kristy)
Measure the health of your community early and often. Create a benchmark against yourself and your competitors and measure over time. A very good point made by Kristy was that what you measure is going to be different for everyone and should be aligned with your goals for each platform. Where are your influencers and why target them? Listen, ask for participation and make sharing easy. Kristy covered a lot of important things to consider and shared several tools to help every step of the way.
Conversion Rate Optimization: Developing a Process to Increase Market Share
Stephen Pavlovich, Conversion Factory (@conversionfac)
An important point made by Stephen was that conversion rate optimization (CRO) covers the entire sales funnel and the whole business, not just landing pages. He shared some examples of increasing conversions and profits.
Don’t start with changing the buttons; first find the reason you are not converting, why there is no trust. Stephen walked us through the important phases of CRO step-by-step: Analyze, Design and Test. Use tools to help you find the answers you need to analyze. Use big tests to innovate, then refine with small tests. The biggest failure is not testing. There were plenty of examples and action items so none of us have an excuse for not starting conversion rate optimization NOW.
Facebook’s Hidden Marketing Opportunities
Alex Schultz, Facebook (@alexschultz)
Alex Schultz of Facebook giving insights into how to use Facebook in your marketing efforts
Facebook is not for sending tons of traffic to your site. It’s focusing on retention; how to keep people on site and bring them back. Alex talked about the power of seeing reviews, etc., from people in your network and how they influence you. Takeaway: the web is changing, getting rebuilt around people and social. Social will redefine the web. Think about how your business can be rebuilt around social. It takes time and it won’t be easy and won’t happen overnight. If you work on it now you will be ahead of others in years.
Stick the Facebook platform on your site, add the Facebook login, turn on Facebook Insights, use Facebook Ads and choose Sponsored Stories. Typically people in an industry tend to be friends with other people in the same industry. Alex talked about Google Plus as a great competitor that does make the market better. Then he went into detail on different things such as what to do if you have multiple international sites, how Facebook knows that claiming local listings is not a very good process right now, and what the biggest challenges are to balancing growth and innovation.
With more knowledge than I knew what to do with, I headed back to process all I’d learned. Day three would be even more!