Are You Getting the Most from Your Social Media and SEO?

If you consider social media and SEO as separate entities, you may want to rethink that. New research suggests they’re closely linked and that failing to integrate the two can cost you. A recent SEO strategy report from marketing research specialists with Ascend2 and Research Underwriters found that successful SEO strategies are predicated on making social media a key part of their overall optimization plan. Continue reading

The Rise of Earned Media

When marketing professionals speak of media channels, they often divide them into three groups: owned media, paid media and earned media.

The first group is self-explanatory; it refers to the media channels you control directly, such as your blog, home page, press releases and landing pages. If your site has a moderated forum or chat feature, that would fall under the aegis of owned media as well. Owned media is an excellent vehicle for getting your message out uninterrupted, but it may lack the wide distribution of other avenues. Even if you buy content online to publish yourself, it still counts as owned media and not as paid media. Continue reading

Do You Have a Brand or Just a Name?

Every company has a name, but names don’t make a brand. Your business name identifies you, but with a cohesive branding strategy, your customers identify with you. Brands transcend labels and become a part of an overall lifestyle.

If that sounds like a tall order for a small business, you’re right. Most brands belong to Fortune 500 companies that have poured countless advertising executives’ talent into iconic logos and brilliantly calculated ad campaigns. The biggest brands no longer need to have their names in their ads. “Just do it.” “I’m lovin’ it.” “It’s the real thing.” Branding at that level takes decades of effort and billions of dollars. Continue reading

Google’s Penguin 2.0 Update Prioritizes Great Content

Toward the end of May, Google delivered the promised major update to Penguin, the search engine giant’s anti-spam-site algorithm bundle. Google’s Matt Cutts described some of what site owners should know about the changes, and early data backs him up in his forecasts. You don’t need to be familiar with the technical aspects of SEO under Penguin 2.0 to see that Google – and by extension, every other major search engine – is all in for high-quality content.

Here’s what changed with the latest adjustments. Continue reading

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