Internet Advantage weekly sum-up week 47

Week 47 brings us a lot of new interesting infographics, news updates and blogposts about SEO, SEA and more. You cannot miss these great updates! Enjoy our selection for week 47!

Link Building for the Little Guys – Matthew Barby

We all like to think big, bigger, biggest. Besides, there are many articles about creative and unique linkbuilding. That´s all very well, but unfortunately not everybody will understand it. In this article Matthew explains the idea of linkbuilding for the little guys.

Growing a New Website to 100,000+ Organic Visits Per Month in Less Than 1 Year – Nick Eubanks
When launching a new website, your dream is to get as many visitors as possible, in a very short time. Nick explains in this example how, through good SEO and a good content strategy, he got to 100.000 a month in only 1 year! The interesting detail in this case is that the website we are talking about is actually in Japanese!

Google Adwords conversion rate averages by industry [infographic]
Many companies in different branches dive, without good consideration, into the world of SEA. However, there are really big contrasts and differences in the conversion percentages between the different industries. Wordstream published a great infographic with solely interesting statistics per industry! A little glimpse: Travel has the lowest conversion percentage and Internet/Telecom the highest.

9 Ways to Write Killer Titles That Convert – Chelsea Blacker
Nowadays the internet and blogging are a really important part of personal branding. Thus, it wouldn’t hurt to pay more attention to the perfect title for a blogpost. This might sound a little over the top, but this really makes the difference between clicking or scrolling, and maybe even world fame. Chelsea Blacker gives 9 points that your ‘killer-tittle’ should comply with.

Helping you be more productive with the AdWords interface
Like Google points out, the months around December are the most important months for many advertisers, so they are even more important to Google! So it was time for Google to make some adjustments to the Adwords interface! The most important adjustments can be found in the new parts of the search terms reports and a diagnostic system that searches for possible errors and conflicts in your campaigns.

Setting Up Your SEO Project / Agency for Success – Ron Garrett
In this post Ron Garrett talks about the main problems with (new) agencies. Most of the time these problems don’t have anything to do with the knowledge of SEO, but more with the level of communication with the clients, and offering the specific solutions for their problems. Based on the original models of ‘The cycle of sadness’ Ron Garrett explains how he would solve the different situations.

18 Ways to Create Unique Content From Survey Results – Ken McGaffin
Within the context of content-marketing and the creation of good content, we are all looking for new, fresh and creative ideas. A good source for developing this content is for example research results. In this post Ken McGaffin shares some examples of content you can make based on surveys. Furthermore he gives another 18 examples of different kinds of content that can evolve from good research.

The new Formula for PPC
This post brings us a very interesting infographic about PPC. It shows how easy it used to be to advertise back in the days, and how this has changed over time. The more ‘connected’ the world got, the more complicated it became to advertise. However, with all the available data nowadays nowadays it is way easier to do specific targeting!

5 Types of Content You Probably Aren’t Creating but should – Arnie Kuenn
To stay in line with content-marketing, here another post about this topic. Arnie Kuenn points out that content-marketing can be a successfull strategy, but only if implemented correctly. Arnie Kuenn gives different examples of content that many companies are not creating , but should !

Update-Bell: Googles Pony update is shaking the SERPs
Like my colleague Jan-Willem already expected weeks ago because of the big changes, seems to be happening. Marcus Tober from Searchmetrics shows that from their data we can conclude that there has been an update. Of course this has to come with another great name: Pony Update. And as it looks for now, it is an iteration from the Penguin algorithm.


Internet Advantage Weekly sum up -week 1

The new year has started and a lot of blog posts from this week are making predictions for 2013, like what we can expect, what will be important and what will (most likely) change. Enjoy our selection of the most interesting articles of week 1!

A Web Marketing Consultant’s New Year’s Resolutions – Mike Pantoliano.
New Year’s Resolutions are a worldwide tradition, also for marketeers. Instead of reflecting on 2012, Mike prefers to take a look at 2013. What will be important? In this blog posts he is mainly discussing ‘the big picture’ and the influence of mobile devices.

2013: The Year of Marketing Integration – Uri Bar – Joseph
Just like Mike, Uri Bar is making predictions for 2013. They both agree on ‘the big picture’, but Uri Bar prefers to call it ‘Integration’. This includes both online and offline integration and the integration of campaigns and tools. He furthermore says that it will become easier to measure and predict Social Media.

5 Steps to Calculate Social Media ROI Using Google Analytics

Want to know more about measuring Social Media? Then this article from Rebecca Murtagh is a good read! She gives great tips on how you can calculate Social Media ROI by using Google Analytics.

Measuring Success in 2013: Assigning Real Value & Tracking Every Click with Google Analytics
In this post James explains about the Analytics accounts he has worked with in the past. He comes to the conclusion that a lot of published statistics are meaningless. He describes how you can avoid creating and publishing vague statistics, simply by arranging the different goal types.

10 Reasons Why Public Relations is a ‘Must-do’ for SEO in 2013
Once more a post that gives great suggestions for 2013. Ken McGaffin explains why SEO and PR are becoming more integrated with eachother and how the last Google updates have influenced this. This list includes 10 reasons why SEO’s should absolutely focus more on PR in 2013.

Avoiding the SEO ‘Fiscal Cliff’ – Justifying Investment With Metrics that Matter – Grant Simmons
While writing this article it is still unclear if the United States will have to take drastic measures to shrink the country’s deficit. Now we know that this will not happen, however, a lot of online marketeers (both in the U.S. and Europe) have to work with ever shrinking budgets. Grant Simmons gives a great piece of advice on how to meet the challenge and stay ahead of competitors.

The FTC rules: Google does NOT favor its own products in the search results.
Last week the American Federal Trade Commission ruled that Google is not favoring its own products, and therefore does not have to change the organic search results. The FTC dropped all charges against the search engine giant. Google only has to make some minor changes, but these won’t have mayor effects on the search results. Even though this was a big win for Google, it did stir up some discussion. This great article on Search Engine Journal explains more about the case and the complaints against it.

Internet Advantage Weekly Sum Up – Week 3

Another week, another sum-up. We collected the most important news updates from the past week, and summarized them for you. With this week some great articles on the changes in Google Analytics, the new Facebook Graph Search, Paid Search opportunities and the development of Tablet advertisement.

Nine Google Analytics changes
Last week Google made some changes in Google Analytics. Nine changes, to be exactly. Most of them are changes in design and lay-out, but there are some minor changes in the features and functioning as well. Dan Barker wrote a great article on his blog, that explains all the new features.

The experts’ views on content marketing
What works for online marketing? This is a question that many online marketers are asking themselves. Most would agree that link building and quantity of links are important, however, after the last Panda update, many marketers started to take online marketing to the next level. Content Marketing is booming and according to some, the next big thing. John Abrena asked 12 online marketing experts about their view on content marketing.

Seven tips on anchor texts for 2013
Rishi Lakhini wrote a great blogpost on anchor texts. With the changes in Google’s search results, due to the Panda and Penguin update, there are some new tricks that you can use in 2013.

SEO in Facebook Search
Facebook announced a new kind of search engine for their website; Facebook Graph Search. This new search tool enables users to search for people, pictures, restaurants and music through their friends. Once the Graph Search is officially online, users will be able to search for things like ‘Italian restaurants that my friends like’, Facebook will then see who, and how many of your friends have liked Italian restaurants, and show the top results. Other options are searching for nearby places, check ins, or people with the same interests. This new feature is very interesting for SEO marketers; therefore Facebook already published some SEO tips on their Studio Blog.

Marin Software and IgnitionOne Reports: Tablet vs. Smartphone advertising.

Marin Software and IgnitionOne both made reports on the development and growth of Tablet Paid-Search advertisements, and compared the results with the Smartphone advertisements. Search Engine Land put the conclusions of both reports together and wrote a great post on it on their blog.

Google expands test of AdWords that collect Email addresses
Google is testing a new feature of AdWords, which will collect e-mail addresses of users. So far this has only been tested in the US and the UK, but when it’s finished will be used on all of Google’s pages. This new feature is just a new way of generating leads, before the user has even visited a website. Find out how it all works on Search Engine Land´s website.
Adobe: Paid search opportunities lie in tablet targeting and Product Listing Ads.

Adobe believes that at the end of this year 30% to 35% of the paid search traffic will come from mobile devices. They also mention that the big opportunities lie in Tablet Targeting and Product Listing Ads (PLAs). Click Through Rate of these ads are about 34% higher than the Standard Text Ads. However,the average order value is 12% lower.

Internet Advantage weekly sum up – week 2

Below you will find an overview of the most important news updates on Online Marketing of week 2. We found some great link building tips and have an interesting article about the new patents and strategies of Google.

EU vs FTC – Google to be Made to Change Search Results in Europe – Peter Young
The European Union took a look at Google’s position in the market, just like the FTC did a couple of weeks ago. Contrary to the FTC, the EU ruled that Google is taking advantage of its dominant position. Therefore they ruled that Google will have to make changes in the European search results.

eCommerce Link Building in 2013: 6 Experts Weigh In – Matt Gratt
Link building for ecommerce websites can be very tricky, and at Buzz Stream they know all about it. To make things a bit easier Matt Gratt asked 6 experts to share their ecommerce link building strategies. Todd McDonald of RKG, Alisa Scharf of SEER Interactive, SeOverflow´s Everett Sizemore, Don Rhoades of Gonzo SEO, Steph Chang of Distilled New York and last but not least Nick Eubanks of W.L. Snook & Associates shared some useful tips!

3 Ways B2B SEOs Can Keep on Winning in 2013 – Derek Edmond
Starting a new year is always a great opportunity to look at different ways for success. Derek Edmond describes 3 different strategies for B2B SEO that can be very useful in 2013.

Building Google’s Knowledge Base and Identifying Locations in Web Pages – Bill Slawski
Google has stated before that they will concentrate more on Knowledge Graphs, which will detect certain types of information quicker. Bill Slawski is looking into the patents that Google requested to identify locations named on websites.

Why You Need To Complement Your In-House Team With External Expertise – Eric Enge
Many companies are in doubt if they should do in-house SEO or outsource it. Eric Enge explains why it is a smart decision to expand your in-house team with external experts.

6 tactics to deal with rejection in link building – James Agate
Link building isn’t always easy, and as a link builder you will encounter a lot of rejections. James Agate is trying to cheer up all the link builders out there, by sharing 6 different ways of dealing with rejections.

How Many Pages Should A Site Have Indexed by Search Engines? – Michael Martinez
Even though all websites are different, Michael Martinez is taking a shot at researching how many pages a site should have indexed by Search Engines.

Easy step-by-step guide to finding low quality links – Paddy Morgan
According to State of Search, 2012 was a great year for link building. Paddy Morgan states that link building is still underestimated in the world of marketing, even though link builders are a great added value for enterprises, and are not only doing some shady link building tricks. In this post he shares a useful plan of action (including tools) to trace high quality links.

How to choose a SEM Agency

For any business, search engine advertising is no trivial matter. It requires a lot of money and effort, so assessing what options are available to us is necessary if we want to achieve the best possible results. The first thing we have to decide is whether we want to manage our own accounts internally or if we would prefer an outside agency to handle them. Both have their advantages and disadvantages!

Search engine advertising is an art which encompasses statistics, mathematics, economics and creativity, and one which can sometimes present complex optimisation problems in terms of investment, development of accounts etc… Advertising platforms are also constantly changing, so capitalising upon these changes on almost a daily basis is essential if optimal performance is to be achieved.

If a business isn’t capable of overcoming common search engine advertising obstacles on their own, then it’s advisable that they seek the help of a specialised SEM agency. Such obstacles may arise due to:

A lack of experience or knowledge
Insufficient time or internal resources
The current agency being used is not specialised
If you do decide to work with an SEM agency, your first impression of them is really important. These initial points of contact can give you a really good insight into what it would be like to work with them. If they don’t ask very many questions, make unrealistic promises or guarantee you the first position for a keyword, then be wary. It could be all smoke and mirrors…

Working with an agency rather than assigning the job to somebody internally has its advantages. These include:

Ability to ´keep up-to-date´
Overview of advertising systems
Firsthand knowledge of similar accounts
Unexpected ROI
Outside view of the business that brings new perspectives
How to choose an agency: the positive and negative signs

In order to trust an SEM agency with your advertising investment, it is absolutely essential that the business and agency get to know each other. To do this you have to ask (and be prepared to answer) some questions. Don’t be afraid.

Positive signs

The will to share knowledge
Account support
Continual updates
Negative signs

Unrealistic promises
Guaranteeing the top position for keyword X
Use of their own Adwords account
Excessive automation
Lack of business communication
The final decision

There are many factors that need to be taken into account when it comes to hiring an agency to manage our investments in online activities. We have to weigh up these factors and find a way to make them work with our business needs and resources… it can be a complicated task.

Google updates and more SEO news from week 48


It has been a week since our last update with important articles, and during this time a lot has happened in the ‘Online World’. As usual Internet Advantage collected the most important Articles for you! See our here for week 48.

Is CPM bidding a waste of your money?
You will probably answer this question with a clear ‘yes’. But have you ever had a CPM display (branding) campaign? On they are going into depth about CPM, and give a clear explanation why CPM indeed is an outdated and money-wasting campaign strategy.

Black Friday, Twitter and Online Sales.
I have never witnessed Black Friday in The United States, but according to the Online Buzz it has been complete chaos. Of course Social Media has a share in creating this. But does this medium actually boost online sales by means of Twitter referrals? You can read all about it on the Businessinsider.

Search Strategies Event Amsterdam
On the 29th of November the Search Strategies Event was held in Amsterdam. A couple of our employees attended the event. Peter and Aloutte wrote an extensive report about their visit, you can read it here.

Link building for little guys
linkbuilding is not only reserved for the bigger players in the industry should be commonly known. Small businesses will probably not have the same resources as medium and large sized companies; however, this doesn’t mean that their linkbuilding won’t be effective. Matthew Barby explains that as a ‘little guy’ you should look at linkbuilding as a way of ‘relationship-building’ to make it more effective.

Missed opportunities – find websites that will post your infographic but will not post your link.
The popularity of the use of Infographics as linkbait is still increasing. The use of infographics can be costly, that’s why it is of great importance to know who is posting your infographic and if they will eventually link to your page. Geoff Kenyon made a great practical overview of how you can trace who posted your infographic and if this is linking to you.

The biggest usability mistakes: learning based on 100.000 usability tests.
Usability is a matter of testing over and over again. Improvements in the usability of your website can really improve the conversion. Dr. Karl Blank from ConversionRateExperts shares his most important findings based on 100.000 completed usability tests.

9 Tips for an effective negative keyword strategy
A good PPC campaign requires a good negative keyword strategy. When you use the right negative keywords it will save you money, increase the relevance of your advertisements and improve the click-through rate. Sam Owen gives 9 tips to get more out of your negative keyword strategy.

Google updates and more SEO news from week 46

In week 46 there are a lot of interesting articles to read on the internet. These articles include topics like the future of SEO, infographics and mobile SEO. We created a selection of the best articles to keep you up to date!

How does Google consider site-wide backlinks?
This week Matt Cutss answered the YouTube Question about site-wide backlinks. Because the Panda and Penguin updates are still fresh in our minds, a lot of people were wondering if Google considers site-wide backlinks positive or negative. What does google think about these kinds of links? Does Google count it as only 1 link from the whole domain? The answer is very straightforward: when it is a relevant, non-commercial link, the side-wide back link will not be considered negative.

The future of the visual web and the future of SEO
John Doherty describes the future of the visual web and the future of SEO. Fact remains that the web is becoming more visual every day. We are always focusing on good, relevant and fresh content, but isn´t the visual aspect just as important? Doherty´s conclusion: Yes, appearance does matter, and people appreciate a nice design. It gives out a signal of trust, and because of this, people tend to return to this page in the future.

6 Reasons why I don’t look at your Infographic
Unbounce is discussing the infographic this week. Infographics are hot, everybody wants an infographic. You see them almost everywhere, but only few of them really stand out and become a hype. It really is not that easy to make a successful infographic.
Sharon Hurley Hall discusses 6 points that are of great importance to the successfulness of an infographic.

An outreach Experiment for Paid Links in the Travel Industry
Paddy Morgan did research about the paid links within the travel sector. He often received questions from other SEO´s about how to deal with webmasters and bloggers who ask for money when publishing a link. This brought him to the idea of an experiment. Based on his findings he gives his personal vision on paid links.

A week in the life of 3 Keywords
Keywords constantly rise and drop, but which movements are normal and when should we get worried? Dr. Pete from SEOMoz shares his experiences with fluctuations of rankings. According to Dr. Pete, it is of great importance to look at the long-term patterns and not to make any premature decisions about when a keyword is declining in a short amount of time. Rankings are still important, but let’s not forget that we are in a constantly moving world!

Get started with Mobile SEO
With an increasing use of mobile devices, it makes a lot of sense to optimize your website. Our ex-colleague Aleyda Solis shares some helpful tips to accomplish this.
It all starts with a thorough analysis, followed by an adaption of the design to optimize your mobile site. If you follow these steps you will be ensured of a mobile site that is ready for the future.

Content Strategy for Christmas and the New Year
Whether you like it or not: the holidays are coming closer, and in case you want to profit from them, this is the time to start! Shaad Hamid explains that with a good content strategy comes strict planning. How, in the world of e-commerce, can you make sure your customers won´t be disappointed because you cannot deliver their orders on time?

Bridging the Gap Between SEO and PR
SEO and PR are becoming more and more integrated. We too started to notice that our customers are often involving us in the branding of their brands through off-page SEO activities. This article explains which two aspects of these marketing activities are connected and how PR-professionals can use our knowledge of SEO to their advantage.

A Simple Guide to Google Content Experiments
The so called ‘split testing’ is an underestimated component of the search industry. Nick Eubanks describes in his article on how split testing is less complicated than you might think. With a step-by-step guide he shows that through good testing you can come to the realization that small changes can lead to big improvements.

Google Analytics from session-driven to customer-driven

At last week’s Google Analytics User Conference, Google provided some insights into the future of Web and Google Analytics. Sagnik Nandy explained that Google is working on a new way of using analytics in which ‘the session’ is no longer the center of attention, but the customer. With help of a nice example he indicated both the necessity to change Analytics in the near future, as the difference with the current way of working.

“In the everyday life we talk with people. People that are still the same person when we talk to them again in the future. In real-life, a conversation isn’t called a ‘session’. We speak to each other from person to person on a continual basis, not from time to time in a session, and we certainly don’t call it a session.”

The importance of a “Customer-centric Analytics Platform” is becoming bigger and bigger. The fact that Google is privately working on a new way of measuring for some time now, doesn’t come as a surprise. The new platform is currently being tested on and it is expected that the first real version for users will be available somewhere around the fourth quarter of 2012.

The idea behind Customer-centric analysis
Sagnik gave a short explanation of the how and why behind the decision to make analytics more customer-centric. Google’s goal is threefold:

Reduce cookie-usage/dependence (bandwidth and speed)
Simplify single-user tracking (reliability and value)
Over multiple devices
Over multiple domains
From multiple sources (crm, etc.)
Data processing has to take place completely server-side at Google (flexibility)
Summarized, Google wants to realize this in the near future by sending visitor-data solely based on one unique identifier (user-id). Based on this user-id Google wants to process all the data on the servers of Google and subsequently ‘tie it together’. Google can select the user-id for you, but as a user you can also use your own ID’s and pass them through to Google Analytics.

Reduce Cookie usage to one single visitor-id
By reducing the amount of cookies drastically and by sending through data solely based on one single user-id, a lot of bandwidth can be saved.

Currently, Google analytics uses several cookies for the measurement of visitor behavior.

_utma – cookie that is being placed at the first visit
_utmb – cookie that represents an active session
_utmc – isn’t used anymore
_utmz – contains the origin of the visitor (referral, direct, Google, campaign etc.)
_utmv – for the usage of custom variables
_utmx – for the usage of the website optimizer
Google Analytics Cookie typesWith help of these cookies all data and behavior of a visitor is being sent to Google Analytics. With every page view all cookies are being read, all campaign data is sent each time again and all cookies are being updated etc. Although this happens in a split second, overall, it costs a lot of bandwidth and capacity. Certainly from Google’s perspective, who receive and have to process data from millions of websites.

The processing of data to achieve the same reports as we have right now remains possible because Google still has the possession over the same data. With help of the user-id, Google Analytics is perfectly capable of reconstructing the entire session (and the follow-up sessions). The original source of the visitor is already set since the first visit with his or her referral data. Specific campaign-data can still be set with parameters, like we are already able to do so right now.

Measuring over multiple devices
Measuring a user over multiple devices (computers, laptops, tablets, smartphones, apps etc.) proved to be difficult up to now. Because visitors and customers are increasingly using all kinds of devices within one single transaction, it becomes more and more important to measure the usage over these devices.

Example: Someone collects the initial information about a product on his or her work. In the evening, husband and wife use the iPad to collect some additional information about the specific product and during the weekend the product is ordered via the laptop.

Within this single transaction three devices are used, but the last and converting visit on the laptop will get all the credits.

In the new situation you have the possibility to generate a user-id. This means that registered users can be provided with their own ID, which can be used for Google Analytics. With that, it is possible to track logged-in users all the time, even over multiple devices or domains. The only ‘cave-eat’ that remains is the fact that you have to motivate your users to login. For the use of apps this will be easier, but online this will remain a serious challenge for a lot of websites. In addition, you could also start working with cookies yourself to keep on tracking users that have logged-in in the past and keep on using their user-id.

Concluding, it should become possible to send data to Google Analytics from every kind of source. When a customer completes a transaction offline, but you have his or her user-id, you can also send that data to Google Analytics. Google Analytics will subsequently link that transaction to the specific customer. Specific activities that you have saved in the CRM, can now also be included in Google Analytics in the same way.

Data processing within Google Analytics
Finally, Google wants to create a situation in which all the data processing takes place on the servers of Google. Currently all the data is more or less delivered ready-made. Processing the data afterwards, gives Google the possibility to apply custom configurations on this data, which can vary by Google Analytics user or profile.

For example, think of setting the cookie duration. Currently you have the possibility to set this on a profile level. In the new situation you could set the cookie duration for different sources or websites, according to your own needs or situation, at for example affiliate-channels. For specific campaigns you could limit the cookie duration to 10 days, while you could set the cookie duration at 60 days for organic traffic.

Of course this is just an example of the possibilities that Google Analytics has to offer in this new situation. With extensive configuration options you are even more capable of adapting the data and reports to your own needs.

Session-centric analytics vs. customer-centric analytics platform
This is a development that was received with great interest and will be discussed more and more the next few months. Google Analytics is starting to involve the community and use their feedback to finalize their product. What do we want as users? Which problems and opportunities do we face or see with this new way of measuring? Are there any problems or pitfalls Google overlooks, or are there any technical developments available which can help to refine Google Analytics even more?

Nevertheless, the focus is shifting towards the customer, not towards the ‘John Doe’ visitors. With help of the ‘John Doe’ information you will still have the same possibilities as the ones Google Analytics currently offers you. But measuring what a customer does, what their interests are and how to respond to this behavior is what a marketer drives or should drive.

Of course we, as well as Google, are very curious about your opinion and ideas around this topic. So do not hesitate to leave a comment!

Don’t Call Me SEO, Call Me IM

Our aim this year is to leave behind the tag of ´SEO Agency´ that has been with us successfully for many years, because, the truth is, we no longer feel that is represents what we are trying to do. Not only because during the last few years we have also begun to offer Social Media, nor because of our integration with Traffic4U giving us greater ability in SEM, but because the work of an SEO Agency has evolved so much during the last few years that “Search Engine Optimisation” isn´t really what we do anymore.

This year we want you to call us an “Inbound Marketing Agency,” not bad eh? We are converting ourselves into IMs, into Inbound Marketers (in case you didn´t get the abbreviation!) All joking aside, the Internet has matured and we find ourselves in a difficult world where it is not enough to just be.

It is true that the Internet is the window into your business, one that the whole world can look through; however, this automatically means that you are in competition with the rest of the world as well, and in an environment such as this it is difficult to stand out. This is our objective, to help you to get the most out of the internet, and for this reason, our role had to evolve. We like the term “Inbound Marketing” because it implies that we earn trust and interest in your business, as opposed to buying it. It is a holistic process that includes SEO, Social Media and SEM, but also content marketing, web analysis, usability and conversion.


We are moving away from tools and focusing more on constructing value through detailed analysis of objectives, markets, publications and messages. Being the best in IM (or SEO if we are using the language of 2011) does not consist of being the best technicians and programmers and deciphering the sacred algorithm, it consists of making your publications found because they are relevant to your client base and thereby securing the sale of your products or services to clients who have found you in the ocean that is the Internet.

Luckily, we are not alone in this battle: in the latest study carried out by SEOMOZ, businesses focusing purely on SEO were slowly but surely disappearing and business offering inbound marketing (offering SEO, content, analysis and conversion) were growing. Only 25 out of the 150 businesses surveyed claimed to offer only SEO, and 26.7% offered a wider range of services.

To cite David Bonilla, one of my favourite thinkers (if not guru), this year we will realize that:

(SEO does not exist anymore) What exists is SECS or Search Engine Common Sense. Hire an expert in SECS who will help you improve your websites success with searchers and flee from those selling the idea that, all of a sudden, you will gain zillions of new visitors by adding ´sex´ and ´miniskirt´ to your keywords on your homepage, everybody is making the same mistake, including people with a lot more resources than you.

Creative process for off-page consultancy

Gabriel Yoran of Steganos gave a conference (Berlin 04.06.2012) at the Webinale in Berlin in which he described the creative process for campaign creation, and while the process he described can be applied to all creative processes his key points and the thought structure are especially relevant in light of Google’s Penguin update on April 24th where the quality of content is key in developing a clean link profile.

Gabriel described the following 7 key points:

The objective(s): Describe clearly what the goals of your campaign are, whether sales, SoV, increase in sales, generating quality links,
Consumer insights: In order to create quality content to which people will respond and link to, you need to understand what they are currently saying about your brand/product and why they are saying it. Market research, online questionnaires, social media monitoring are all tools that can help you create a database of consumer insights. Those insights can evolve overtime; therefore make sure you stay up-to-date
Conventions: Observe what are the specifics of you market and try and understand why. Do you want your content to follow these standards or go against them? Whichever one you choose make sure you understand the implications and stick to your choice.
Proposition: This is not your claim, it is your one sentence brand pitch. Are your customers capable of understanding your product and are you capable of generating interest in your product in one sentence? Is this proposition and integral part of all your content.
Reason why: Are you capable of justifying your proposition and are you 100% committed to your proposition. It is important to translate this in your content.
Tonality: This is your last chance for differentiation, what is the tone you wish your brand to embody in light of the first 6 key points, this tone will be an integral part of your content.
Connection opportunities: When and where can you and should you reach you customers.
Following these key points will allow your brand to generate a natural link-building profile thanks to quality creative content.

Additionally by adopting such a process through all aspects of your communication you will ensure continuity between your SEO, your SEM and your SMM.


Gabriel Yoran is co-founder of consumer privacy software company Steganos (which he started at the age of 17) and location-based social network, aka-aki.

Gabriel is an expert in product design and consumer marketing with more than 15 years of professional experience. He is also a member of the European Union Social Networks Group.

Gabriel is a mentor at the Founder Institute and gives lectures on Entrepreneurship, Marketing, and Product Design.