What is Guest Blogging? An Infographic Courtesy of MyBlogGuest.com

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I have been a huge advocate of guest blogging in order to build relationships, exposure AND links. I know may people within our own internet marketing niche who do it often, but I still have to see bigger brands take part in it (maybe with the exception of American Express’ Open Forum, which is more of a community). Here is a nice infographic explaining how it builds upon the blogging efforts you already do.

Social Media as a Marketing Service

Dave Snyder asked me to post a topic to the Search and Social study group, but thought it may be a good idea to post my same question here and see what you all think.

Last week we did a quick local SEO 101 presentation/training session where a highly-regarded PR firm attended. We were happy to see them, and had an engaging conversation on the impact of SEO and social media in the PR landscape.

But this in itself presents a challenge for anyone who works for a search marketing firm. With the growing comfort level for search marketing and social media at agencies and internal marketing departments, how does an SEO firm work with a client who already uses an advertising agency or PR firm that offer the same services? Do you “consult” on the projects that are already “optimized” by other agencies? Do you start offering these other services, expanding solely from search (such as social media efforts)? If so, how do you introduce social media as part of a search strategy? Do you provide the content development and syndication service as part of social media plans?

Of course, the folks in this arena are well-versed in social and the impact on search, but once presented with a potential client who has enough understanding to be dangerous (yet still confused), the challenge of _not_ sounding obtuse and buzz-wordy is a big one.

I’ve done a little research on social media specifics that you can actually offer as a service, but most service descriptions I’ve found (mostly from agencies) have been very broad, with lots of marketing-speak that just make my eyes roll.

As you can imagine, this could go in many different directions, and would love to hear your thoughts, or if you’ve come across the same challenges. I’ll be happy to compile the results and share the feedback.

Marketing + Content = New Audience

Most of you know I work for a mid-sized newspaper company, and like most newspapers, we’ve been undergoing quite a bit of change lately, forcing me to think about how the marketing department for the “online division” provides value to the organization.

Media, it’s consumption, and as a result marketing to people has become fragmented. Therefore capturing and fulfilling the expectation (need) of a new audience is different. Yet somehow the “Newspaper Online” operational structure and product structure reflects that of “Newspaper”.

Why is this a square peg in a round hole scenario? Well, it’s scalability (thinking large) vs. agility (thinking small). It brings back the theme of applying “New Marketing” to “Legacy Product”; which results only in a “Big Mess”. It no longer works to be everything to everyone anymore.

To attract a new segment we need to think small. Where are these people, what are they doing? With the resources, effort and focus on citizen media, as well as the concern in gaining market share, this is more important than ever.

Also, success is not only defined by the “big number” (pageviews). Measurement of success for new audience includes engagement (pages consumed and time spent) and loyalty (who is coming back).

Attracting new audiences is not all about the technology or platform involved, it’s about outreach and building teams that can do the following:

– Conversational writing, listening: The content becomes the marketing, and vice versa, it’s a two-way conversation.
– Group interactions, events, mingling, networking
– Guerilla marketing


New audience development is about the cycle of the user experience online and offline, with the common goal of creating value for the audience: getting them there and keeping them there.

Back in the saddle; btw, PTS!

There are keys to any successful blog; remaining on topic, be informative (yet interesting), update frequently, and stick to a schedule. I’ve lapsed on those last 2 months for a variety of reasons – of which I apologize profusely. But let’s move on from that.

I was catching up on the 200+ blog posts in Google Reader this morning and one stood out to me that I could relate to completely. Sean Polay, a colleague of mine at Ottaway Newspapers reminded his content folks to “Pimp the good stuff!”, or as he affectionately coined the phrase, “Pimp that shit!” Or nicely put: “PTS!” Gotta love that.

How many times have we gone through the trouble of creating really great content or tools, only to have to shrivel up in no man’s land because it didn’t belong in a specific content category? Or simply because of lack of communication between departments? Or how about the times we’ve gone through the trouble of promoting a feature offline only to have no clear direction on how to find it once on the site? Sitewide search is helpful, but not necessarily the slam-dunk solution.

So do yourself and your audience a favor, and PTS!