19Jun

What is Long Tail SEO?

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In this video we’re talking about Long Tail SEO, that’s “Search Engine Optimisation.” Long Tail SEO is a concept not well understood by business owners, most business owners have a few keywords in mind, which they think of as the trophy phrases or the key phrases that represent their industry.

So for a hotel in Adelaide, this might be “Adelaide Hotel” or “Hotel Adelaide” or perhaps “accommodation Adelaide,” and these would be considered as the trophy phrases, the key phrases for the industry.  If a business doesn’t rank for their trophy phrase/s, they often feel like they’re not going to succeed, and if they do rank for these phrases, they feel like they very will succeed. The problem is that by thinking and focusing on only these head or key terms, trophy phrases, they’re often called, you’re missing out on possibly 80 to 90% of the types of keywords that could send you traffic and business.

This is where the long tail comes in. Long tail keywords are typically 2, 3, 4, 5 or more words long and are usually more specific to what the searcher is looking for. Going back to our hotel example, a potential customer might be looking for a hotel with the ability to add extra beds for kids, or one that has other child-friendly things in the hotel, they might be looking for particular types of activities, maybe a games room in the hotel to keep them entertained when they’re not out and about, maybe they want to stay fit and are looking for some accommodation with a gym nearby. There’s many different words that can be added to the core keywords ie. “hotel” to look for something more specific to what the searcher wants.

What is Long Tail SEOIf you actually graph this, for most industries, if you actually graph or plot the keywords and the traffic volume for each keyword, you’ll find that these head terms up one and a few of them get a little traffic each, however 80 to 90% of the total traffic for that industry is coming from the Long Tail – many keywords that don’t send much traffic each, but collectively they make up a huge proportion of the total search traffic for that industry, so by ignoring those, you’re potentially missing out on a large portion of the possible traffic and business.

In my next video I’m gonna explain the two different ways you can target the Long Tail of search for your industry with your website.

11Jun

Why isn't my website ranking in Google?

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In this video, we’re going to talk about some of the reasons why your website isn’t ranking in Search Engines. There are simply three main reasons your website’s going to have difficulty ranking:

  1. Onsite factors. You want to have the right keywords, that is the keywords that your customers are typing in to find you, worked into your pages in the right ways, so that Google understand what those pages are about. You also want to configure your website in the right way. There’s a certain type of configuration that will make it as easy as possible for Google to get in there and discover all the pages you have for all your different content, see what it is all about, and see the structure and hierarchy of everything. You want to make sure you have both the keywords and the on-site configuration correct, making it as easy as possible for Google to understand what your website is about and discover your content.
  2. Not Enough Content. The second most important factor which people often get wrong is not having enough content. You want to make sure that all of the pages that you want to rank in the searches have at least a paragraph of content on them, if not more. So this can be your product pages or category pages if you have an ecommerce store. It could also be pages about your services, always the homepage and any other pages like articles that you want people to be able to visit from the search engines. All of these pages should have at least a paragraph of content. Textual content is still the primary way that Google learns what a page is about. You also have to keep in mind that your customers are going to use lots and lots of different keywords to look for services and products like yours. It can be very difficult to target those large range of keywords with a limited amount of content. That’s why you want to have lots of content on the page which is relevant and useful for your audience, and you can try and work in all the different types of keywords that people might use to find what you’re offering.
  3. Not Enough Links. The third main reason is a lack of incoming links. Google uses incoming links is the primary way of separating different websites, which are targeting the same topics, and deciding where they should rank to relation to each other. They are going to look for the number and, more importantly, the quality of those incoming links. If your website doesn’t have very many incoming links, you’re going to find it very difficult to rank in the search engines, especially, in markets that are competitive. 

 

04Jun

White Hat SEO vs Black Hat SEO

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In this video, we’re going to explain the difference between Black Hat SEO and White Hat SEO. Black Hat SEO essentially means that you will use whatever techniques necessary to get your website to rank. White Hat SEO, on the other hand, means that you’re going to follow the search engine guidelines when you try to get your website to rank.

The search engines, such as Google, put up a set of webmaster guidelines with different rules and techniques that they want you to use when trying to get your website to rank. In the  grand scheme of things, they’re trying to make the best websites rank for the particular queries that people are searching on. They’ve identified various techniques that they think will allow webmasters to manipulate their efforts to show the best websites; therefore, they don’t want these webmasters using these techniques, because they want to show the good results. Now, if you are discovered using black hat or manipulative techniques, techniques that are outside of their guidelines, then you could receive a penalty. This could be a manual penalty or an algorithmic penalty and it could last a few days, weeks, or months, or it could be more long term, it could last for years or indefinitely, where you find yourself unable to recover from this penalty. So you want to be very careful when you’re doing SEO on your own website or when you’re employing somebody else to do SEO for you that they’re using techniques that are not black hat. Or if they are, that you know and understand the risks beforehand so you know what you’re getting yourself into.

If you want some more information about the differences between a black hat and white hat SEO, you can leave your comment below this video, or you can contact me directly by the website at www.webmarketingadelaide.com.au/feedback/ and I’ll help you out.

11Apr

Ep#35: Building & Marketing a Web Startup with Patrick Moody

Building and marketing a Web Startup: Themematcher.com, with founder Patrick Moody

Instead of the regular show this week we’re playing you an interview we did with Patrick Moody, founder of Themematcher.com as part of our Adelaide Entrepreneurs video interview series.

Get all the details about the startup at the original post over here: Patrick Moody Interview – Founder of Themematcher.com

If you’re interested in attending some Adelaide small business events such as networking, presentations or workshops then you can check all of those out at our Adelaide Small Business Events Calendar. Be sure to sign up to our mailing list as well so you don’t miss anything.

10Jan

Ep#23: 2013 Predictions & Tips

Marketing predictions and tips from FlyingSolo, Top Aussie SEOs and yours truely, plus my reading list for 2013 so far

I hope everyone had a good Christmas and New Years with some time off, but importantly some time and space to make some plans for growing your business in 2013. This episode is a bit of a mixed bag where I pull some predictions and tips for 2013 from a few different sources and discus them.

Flying Solo Marketing Plans

Five most popular 2013 marketing plan items from the Flying Solo thread;

  1. Content marketing (7 votes)
  2. SEO (5)
  3. Social media (4)
  4. Direct Marketing (3)
  5. Website update (3)

Two other interesting items;

  • Video Content Marketing (2) (Check out James Schramko‘s stuff)
  • Word of Mouth Marketing (2) (Discussed with Dr Martin Russell in Episode 6)

SEO Predictions

These predictions were compiled from a great crowd sourced article by Jason Mun. Jason organised Australia’s top SEOs to come together and give there predictions and tips for 2013 and I went through and pulled out some of the common themes which I discuss in the show and list below.

The Article: 2013 SEO Predictions from Australia’s Top SEOs

Top tips/predictions;

  • Google will continue to target spammy link building techniques – webmasters will move away from these techniques (tip: stop using these techniques, question your SEO)
  • Google Authorship will become more important (Discussed in Episode 11 with Tony McCreath)
  • Quality content will become more important (Discussed in the content marketing Episodes… 17 & 18 with Steve Davis and 19 & 20 with Woj Kwasi
  • Structured data appearing more in the search results (Discussed in Episode 11 with Tony)
  • Mobile will become even more important in 2013

My Predictions

Here are some of my own predictions which I will check back on at the end of the year to see how accurate I have been.

  • The downfall of Facebook and the rise of Google+ (tip: build on your own platform rather than someone else’s)
  • The continued importance of images in social media marketing (Discussed with Scott Linklater in Episode 10)
  • Video will continue to grow as a marketing tool
  • Relationship building/networking will become an important part of online marketing. We’re lucky in Adelaide to have lots of networking opportunities so get out your calendars and start taking down dates. (Here’s a list to get your started)

Read lots of books and other info

  • Getting things done by David Allen
  • The Lean Startup by Eric Ries
  • The 4 Hour Workweek by Tim Terriss
  • How Brands Grow by Byron Sharp (Adelaide science based marketing – Ehrenberg bass institute)
  • The E-Myth Revisited by Michael E Gerber
  • Blue Ocean Strategy by W. Chan Kim & Renee Mauborgne

I’d love to hear what you’ve got planned for your business in 2013. Let me know in the comments below, via the voice message widget on the right hand side of the screen or via our Feedback Page.

20Dec

Ep#22: Copywriting, PPC, Video & Social Media Marketing Tips from Adelaide Experts

Provide value, measure everything, keep it simple, edit, edit, edit

This week I’ve got a collection of excepts from interviews I did on the Internet Marketing Adelaide blog in the past. I’ve decided to move my Adelaide internet marketing blogging stuff over to this website so this episode is sort of a celebration of some of the great content that’s over on the (now old) blog.

The topics are;

  • Video Marketing where I asked James Whitrow; what are five things business owners can do to leverage online video?
  • Social Media Marketing where I asked Tom Williamson; what are your Social Media posting best practices?
  • Pay Per Click Advertising (PPC) where I asked Andrew Webber about Quality Scores and Chris Schwarz about the Search vs the Display networks
  • Copywriting where I asked Anna Butler and Karen Zaskolny; what are five things business owners can do to improve their web copy?

The excerpts were taken from the following interviews;

Also mentioned;

Internet Marketing Adelaide logo

13Dec

Ep#21: Why you Should Beware of SEO Ranking Guarantees

At best they are a marketing gimmick, at worst, they are a deliberate attempt to mislead unsuspecting business owners and do dodgy things to their site

This Week’s episode is about Rankings Guarantees. These are guarantees made by SEO companies to lure in and convert unsuspecting business owners. Most ethical SEOs, including Rank Fishkin, one of the most respected people in the SEO industry, agree that making ranking guarantees is wrong but there are still plenty of shady operators out there doing it and probably catching many small business owners unaware. It would be easy to think… “ranking guarantee… how can I lose?” In this episode I go into detail on why you should be very cautious about engaging someone who offers ranking guarantees.

In particular, I cover;

  • An important part of an SEO’s job is education
  • Why rankings are a bad success metric
  • Manipulative SEO techniques – what are they and why you need to know, and approve, if your SEO is going to be using them
  • The long tail of search – what is it and how ranking guarantees don’t align well with this important aspect of SEO

Links / mentions;

I’ve also just come across an article with some non ranking metrics you can track to measure success, which is an important topic that I left out of the podcast.

06Dec

Ep#20: 5 Link Earning Examples you can Learn From

 Fun, interesting, controversial, original, infographicy, newsy content ideas to help earn you links

In this episode I talk to Woj Kwasi from Kwasi Studios for the second time. If you haven’t already, I suggest you check out our first chat in episode 19 where we discussed the basics of link earning before listening to this episode where we go into some examples and case studies of specific types of content that you can learn from and draw ideas for your own content.

Link earning case studies / examples;

  1. Wife Insurance – fun, interesting, controversial idea to promote a life insurance business
  2. CSS styles as pizza toppings – a new idea that Woj hasn’t developed yet but came up with using the “Random Affinities” concept
  3. Tech Acquisition infographic – an infographic showing 6 interesting tech acquisition from 2012 illustrated in a Pacman maze. A creative and visual way of illustrating some interesting information.
  4. How to rank PDF documents – article with original research to produce some unique and useful content
  5. Industry News: How to stop people pinning your content on Pinterest & Google Website Optimiser officially ending – get known as a source of news in your industry and people will keep coming back to you to find out the latest news. If you get on top of a story early, your article may also become a source for other people’s articles which could mean lots of juicy links

Links / mentions;

Wife Insurance Link Earning Example

Screen shot from www.wifeinsurance.com.au

 

[spoiler title=”Transcription” open=”0″ style=”1″]

Nick: Welcome back to episode 20 of the Web Marketing Adelaide Podcast. I’m your host Nick Morris and this week we are talking again with Woj Kwasi from Kwasi Studios. Now, if you haven’t heard it already, I suggest you go back to last week’s Episode, that’s Episode 19, which is the first episode, where we talked to Woj. The topic is Link Earning, so it’s really in the same vein we’ve been talking about the last few weeks of the show, where we are talking about content marketing and the content marketing strategy and this link earning topic is really about how content marketing relates to SEO specifically and trying to get links, which is an important part of SEO.

So, certainly go check out that, the first part of the interview with Woj, which would give you, sort of a base and then come along to this Episode where we’re talking about specific examples and some case studies of a different types of content that have been able to earn links or types of contents that can earn links to give you some ideas a bit more of a grounding, so you know sort of, what sort of stuff that you could be building yourself to try and get links. Let’s go to that interview now.

Nick: I’m back here talking with Woj Kwasi from Kwasi Studios, about link earning. Welcome back to the show Woj.

Woj Kwasi: Hi Nick, thanks for having me.

Nick: No worries. This Episode, we’re still on the Content Marketing link earning stuff and we’re talking about a few different case studies that Woj is, we’re going to discuss and perhaps give you a better idea of what we’re talking about and what sorts of things that you could be doing within your business to be taking advantage of this link and content marketing and stuff. So, take it away.

Woj Kwasi: Sure. So, the first example I’ve got is quite an interesting one. It’s very, quite creative. It was when I was working at Sydney, it’s probably, one of the last ideas I had for this particular client, so, there are one of the strategies best life insurance brokers and come up with compelling ideas for life insurance is quite a daunting task at best. So, one day, I just have this idea you know life insurance sound like wife insurance you know, hang on a second, it might just work.

The thing is, you really need to sort of have business owners buying and someone on board, so, luckily they’re good clients to work with and they said, yeah, that sounds pretty cool, but I have to pitch the idea, I guess and sort of, commit some of my work and the idea behind it was let’s create a website, called wifeinsurance.com.au, so you can check it out, it’s actually live. I think they are doing a Christmas theme at the moment. So, the premise was make this sort of fictitious site with a whole bunch of policies that pertain to your wife, now at dish washing insurance and all these kind of like play on words. Basically, you go online as a male or maybe even as a female, you fill out this policy, against your, again, that sounds a bit harsh, before your wife, and then it says you submit the form, they send you through a certificate and on the thank you page, it says, something like thanks for your inquiry, this has also been copied and sent to your wife. You may like to consider life insurance.

Nick: Good punch line.

Woj Kwasi: Yeah, but I guess that sort of larger scale example but it is quite successful because it was kind of a controversial idea a little bit sexist. They used 1950’s imagery, so that kind of helped tone down that kind of sexist, you know problem.

Nick: Yeah.

Woj Kwasi: But it was, yeah, it was really interesting, got some coverage in the UK, got some here, still getting links. People are still finding out you know it’s not a direct link to Life Broker, the client Life Broker. It still helps because there is a link on that site to Life Brokers so kind of like a tertiary link.

Nick: Right. I guess it’s really not that difficult to set up once you have the idea. I mean, it’s a fairly simple website and it’s really had that creative idea and that’s sort of an example of something that’s not really directly related, I mean it’s obviously insurance and the words are related but it’s not a real thing, it’s a fun idea and these sorts of ideas can also work for getting that links and also just more promotion and media coverage like you mentioned?

Woj Kwasi: Absolutely. I’ll also like to mention they are doing like a Christmas kind of revamp of it, so, that should be interesting. I’m not sure because I don’t work for the agency producing it but it was like an idea I left behind. It’s really cool to say that I execute. I’ve seen the analytics data and it’s fairly successful just one thing I mentioned there in the first episode, think outside the box and what you may think is maybe a little bit sort of tongue in cheek or might be a bad idea, it might actually work. Don’t sort of rule things out. Yeah.

Nick: Yeah I think I have some tips on this but, I think I was reading something recently about brainstorming and creative stuff. Actually, there’s a really [Inaudible 00:06:27] it’s John Clase giving a talk about creativity. It’s like 40 minutes long. Anything by John Clase is entertaining but it had some great content in there as well and I was also reading something recently about brainstorming. I think the idea of just pulling down like any idea you have on the page and then later coming back and figuring out of what’s good would be a way of avoiding, you know, the thing is, it might not be good, when I actually could have some possibilities for it.

Woj Kwasi: Brainstorming should be an open forum for your mind really, like, every idea is good. You shouldn’t criticize the ideas as they’re dumb, because you might think something is bad but it might generate another idea and another process in your mind that I mean you sort of, join a couple of things together and that makes me think of the second example but before I jump into that. It’s funny that you should mention John Clase because his parents were insurance brokers.

Nick: Really? Wow!

Woj Kwasi: You’ve done your research.

Nick: Definitely, I knew from that example, yeah but before we move on to the second example, there is also on that point you mentioned there just talking about brainstorming. If you are in an office setting and you’re doing it with your team or with your employees another, I think this is from John Clase’s talk I just mentioned, you should never criticize someone else’s ideas because you don’t want to dissuade them from being creative and open about any ideas. You should always been encouraging them.

Woj Kwasi: It blocks their cognitive flow and you know, so just keep a note pad around and just write stuff down as they pop up into your mind. You might be a plumber and you might think of, I don’t know. There’s a new movie coming out called Record Raft, so you might think, oh you know, might make a little mini game on my site and that’s a bit abstract, even that, people do get into the habit of closing their own ideas. I almost did it then, but that might lead into another idea, which would be good.

Nick: Yeah so, could have keep a notepad with you perhaps or you could put it in your iphone or on your phone and write down any ideas that you have and then you’ve got some stuff there that you can work with, you can have your team look over and come up with ideas for content. Alright, let’s move on to the second example.

Woj Kwasi: So, this second example, it’s not like something that we developed but based on, I guess Ann Lorey from Portland has sort of talked about coming up with random affinities, so two things that are completely unrelated to one another in the real world that they share an audience. So, it could be like a particular maker, you know it could be siflus but like a particular tv show, so it will create content that will cater for that similar audience. You might find that you know, people who buy computers like game of thrones, so you might produce some content about computing and game of thrones. They’re fairly related but you can get quite abstract like cyclist like I don’t know, maybe they like Sex In The City or something, pretty bizarre things but you know that maybe some female cyclists that you can…

Nick: What kind of content do you think would work in that?

Woj Kwasi: To point and illustrate a better example, the one that we’re going to produce, so we thought, well, we were talking about pizza and css and what way css cascade in styles and shapes in web development and what, they’re kind of random and these sets work together. So, maybe we’ll produce an article that describes css classes and styles as pizza toppings and pizzas so you know, a class could be a supreme pizza, where as the individual styles could be the actual toppings themselves. So, that’s one example of having these random affinities that could kinda work.

Nick: Yeah, right! So, it kinda sounds like I was like that kind of an article would probably be useful for anyone who’s interested in either topic, perhaps maybe not so much pizza but certainly some of these issues but if you find someone who is interested in both, they’re going to be more likely sort of to get into it and maybe sharing it or linking to it, stuff like that.

Woj Kwasi: Yeah exactly! Yeah so I mean like for a graphic design sites that would be a really good article because you know, most people like pizza right? I think I’ve mentioned it too many times during this interview but it’s sounds good. It must be dinner time. So, the next example is we produced, I did a bit of analysis of some popular tech acquisitions recently and I thought I will, once again it’s kind of similar with random affinities thing, tech acquisitions and I thought with Pac man, used to sort of nom, nom, nom the ghost. So, it’s kinda like a company acquiring another company, so decided to produce like a especially just be a graphic of the Pac man maze which has all these different seralta. I think it was six interesting acquisitions and I had Pacmans On The Maze but if kind of turned into a bit of info graphic and yeah I got some shares and got a lot of links to it.

What’s interesting is, it got a lot of links from Spanish websites which, once I sort of look through various back link profiles, I notice that one Spanish influencer is linked to it and then have it linked to his site. So, basically I got a lot of links from Spanish websites and I investigated it a little bit and I noticed, because we can do like a Google image like reverse search. So, you can basically put in your image and just see where it’s appeared around the net and so I found this info graphic on the Spanish site and I looked up the site and just like 30 tweets and like hey hang on a second. You know, I’m not getting any justice from this, so I said you know can you least put a link on your site? So, you know that’s a good way to do things, so, even if it’s not an info graphic, even having photos on your website or and searching for where they have been added, you can get a link, including the source.

Nick: Right yeah. So, info graphic is typically something, which is information in graphical form and have been really popular the last year or two on the web and oftentimes people will take them and put them on their own site with a link back but obviously in this case you found that it had been taken but not given a link back. So, that’s probably a good reason or a good idea for people to keep on top of it, things like it they have images appropriate images within their content, you can do this Google image search.

Woj Kwasi: Here’ a tip for you, so, if you’ve got images, lots of images on your site or a few, you can search for them find some sites for the nick your image so excuse the time, and yeah basically sort of contact them and say hey you know, this is my image, be nice about it because it is cool like having your content shared around the net regardless but yeah there is no reason why you shouldn’t ask for a link.

Nick: Yeah exactly! The important thing is, don’t ask them to take it down, ask them to just give you a link because it’s gonna be more valuable for you to get that link.

Woj Kwasi: Yeah exactly!

Nick: Than it would be just to have the image, unless it is something really important that perhaps you know, if you’re a photographer and you sell your photography, you might you know, you might not want people taking it but a link’s always gonna be good.

Woj Kwasi: Yep. Another example is, so we did this article about how to rank PDF documents and the reason, I guess for the document was because I want to know how to do it and I did a bit of research and I couldn’t find any decent article about the topic, so I thought, well, I’m just gonna, as I go, I’m gonna make this article.

Nick: So, that’s a good point for people with, have some sort of question within their industry that perhaps they don’t know too much about then, that can be an idea for content.

Woj Kwasi: Exactly. An FAQs, you should make maybe the top 20 questions that you get asked by your clients, maybe a handful of these questions, maybe there’s a question in there that you don’t know exactly what the answer is but as you’re sort of looking it up, you can build back content on your site. So, yes, we sort of ran a couple of interesting experiments on that PDF because I really wanted to see how it would work and it’s changed again since I put up that article.

So, I really need to update it but I grabbed a couple of bank products, closure, statements, various different things and I played around changing the titles and the descriptions in the middle of the PDF document of and I think there is a IKEA kitchen guide and I started to rank for those terms and when I look into the Google web master tools, I’m getting a lot of searches for bank related terms and I get IKEA kitchen planner. So, it’s not really what I was after but it’s just interesting to you know, to run those sorts of experiments.

Nick: Yeah, yeah. So, experiments, tests any kind of original research you can do. That’s obviously not too expensive to do that on a small scale and but it’s you know, unique data you can get, which could be interesting to your audience or other people in your industry, all the contents stuff.

Woj Kwasi: Like accounting for example. If you can put up some tax calculators or basically answer any of the questions people may have about how to, what does this field mean in [Inaudible 00:17:04] I mean, you can do a whole guide, because I don’t if you’ve ever been to the ATI website but it’s not very user friendly. There’s a lot of information and I’m not sure an accountant, it’s kinda hard to absorb.

Nick: I think government website is a general something like that.

Woj Kwasi: And it kind of goes back to that thing you were saying on the first episode where people they tend to just, they look out content as text, just maybe some images. They can actually be quite interactive in the way you do things and you can make things, sort of pop out a bit more and have rollovers to explain things like, there are few different sites out there that do that quite well. If I think of some examples, I’ll send you some links and finally, one more example on our side, that we did.

So, newsworthy stuff, done this a couple of times. Pinterest basically is an image sharing site. We can pin content easier on the internet and they release something where you can stop people from pinning stuff on your website, those little meta-tags and stuff. It’s kind of cool and newsworthy. Not many people were reporting on it and yeah, produce some content around that. I think when Google website optimizer got merchant analytics, I did an article about that because you know industry announcements, there’s heaps.

Nick: Yeah, so they can be a, become known as a service source of news within your industry and that will also bring lots of regular viewers and you can become a, you know, if another news site or another site writes about it, you can become the source, particularly for them, so there can be a link and that can be quite a powerful link for you.

Woj Kwasi: There are different types of content you can create that you should turn your links, finding people in your, even industry peers or interviewing them, other blogs, asking people what content they want, even. You can approach bloggers in your industry and say what content do you want or there something that you would like us to cover? I mean, that’s gold because you’re actually asking them and saying hey, what do you want and it will be like, I want this and when you produce it, they’re like, that is what I wanted, I’m going to come and visit you. I want to tell everyone about it.

Nick: Fantastic! So, research is important, which sort of goes back to our first episode, where we’re talking about audience, finding out what the audience wants.

Woj Kwasi: Yep!

Nick: Great! Well, that’s some fantastic examples there that hopefully will give people a good idea of the kind of things we are talking about. We are talking about content and trying to get links from them and people you could probably look out in their own industry and see what sort of content’s out there, what’s been popular, what’s got lots of tweets and likes and shares and if I have the software I could look up links as well, see how many links I’ve got.

Thanks very much for coming on the show again. It’s been fantastic having you again.

Woj Kwasi: It was always my pleasure. It’s great to go to a giants cave and…

Nick: Yeah, yeah. It was definitely a giant’s cave here in Moralta Falls in the Foot Hills of Adelaide Hills and I think the sun will be setting soon but still a nice view for now.

Woj Kwasi: I think this will be the setting of many an interview.

Nick: Yeah, the acoustics in this cave as you predicted are quite good.

Woj Kwasi: Yep, good times.

Nick: Great! Well if anyone wants to find out more about you, your website’s kwasistudios.com and they can find you on twitter as well? What’s your handle again?

Woj Kwasi: Waj kwasi .

Nick: Great and we will have those links in the show notes for all the various things we’ve talked about during this episode and also last episode so you can come check that out and have to look at some of those articles and examples we’ve been talking about.

Nick: I hope you enjoyed this week’s episode. As I said the end day you can go to our website which is www.webmarketingadelaide.com.au to get links to all the stuff we talked about in this show and of course there’s show notes after all of our shows up there, so you can get links and information for each of our shows and I’ll see you next week in episode 21. 

[/spoiler]
29Nov

Ep#19: Introduction to Link Earning and the New SEO

The Death of Link Building and the Rebirth of Link Earning – Rand Fishkin

In this week’s episode we continue along our Content Marketing theme and drill down on the SEO aspect, specifically how the search engine optimisation practice of ‘link building’ is transitioning into ‘link earning. My guest this week is Woj Kwasi from Kwasi Studios. Woj had the great suggestion of getting out of the office and recording this interview out at Morialta Falls in the Giant’s Cave which was a stunning location (see pics below).

Some of the points covered in this episode;

  • How do you know what kind of content people are likely to link to?
  • Once you’ve created a piece of content, how do you actually get the links?
  • What does the future of ‘link building’ and other authority signals look like?
  • What are some steps business owners can take right away to start earning links?

Links / mentions;

Bonus points: Listen out for the following;

  • Kookaburra
  • Koala
  • Hikers

Recording the Web Marketing Adelaide Podcast at Morialta Falls

 

[spoiler title=”Click Here for Transcription” open=”0″ style=”1″]

Nick: Welcome back to Episode 19 of the Web Marketing Adelaide Podcast. As always you can find out more about all of the shows we have done in the past on our website www.webmarketingadelaide.com.au.

This week’s show is going to be in the same vein as all of our previous episodes. So we were talking about content marketing in the past and this episode also deals with content marketing, but more specifically as it relates to SEO, and the ideas around creating links. Now, if you’ve listened to our previous episodes related to SEO, you’d know that creating links or link building is important, as this is a signal or a key signal that Google uses to actually determine which are the best websites, which are the websites that should rank high in the search engines that look at the number and the quality of incoming links.

This week’s episode was recorded in Morialta Falls, in the Adelaide Foot Hills, in the Giant’s Cave, a suggestion by my guest for the week. I have to say, it certainly beats being in the office or being in a coffee shop. Brilliant view of the valley and a nice sound of wild life in the background, so you can hear those.

My guest this week is Woj Kwasi from Kwasi Studios and as I said, the topic relates around link earning. Now, Rand Fishkin from SEO Moz describes the death of link building and the re-birth of link earning. So, he’s talking about the transition from the old way of doing things. When you think of building links, you think of going out and getting links to the new way of doing things, where you create content that’s good and that earns links on its own. So, the real idea is creating that good content links.

Woj Kwasi, my guest, he’s had over 14 years in the RT industry and after bouncing back and forth between Adelaide and Sydney, decided to launch his business, Kwasi Studios in July 2011. Now, he tells me that the first year was pretty difficult, he was working 12 hour days, 8 days a week, although there was a silver lining because he was working from home and he didn’t have to wear pants but after getting married earlier this year, he set himself the goal of doubling his business over the following 12 months, but ended up doing it in 1 month. He’s since opened an office in Modbury, hired 3 employees dubbed the K-Team and he was featured recently in the advertisers’ business section.

So, before I launch into the interview, I just want to say congratulations to Woj on his recent success with growing his business, getting married and opening his office. So, it’s really good to hear with Adelaide business being successful. We’re going to sort of launch into the interview where Woj is going to be telling us how business owners should know what type of content is going to start earning them links, so how do they get into that. Let’s go to the interview now.

Woj: There’s a number of different ways to sort of ascertain that. You can run some experiments, look at the industry trends. Sometimes you can use your gut, instincts I guess, based on past experiences but I think it really depends on your audience and really depends on what you’re targeting. So, really if the content‘s right, it should sort of earn the links naturally, providing useful resources, just providing sort of, you have to get imaginative with the content as well.

People tend to get stuck in this loop where web pages need to be text and a photo, and maybe a video but you can actually be quite creative these days and provide something quite small, even something that is a process in your own business. You can make that into a tool. It makes your life easier, then why not share that to the rest of the world. They will link to it, they will use it, they’ll be happy for it, they’ll talk to their people about it, and sort of be shared. So, there’s lots of different ways of producing content. I’m pretty sure that’s not what you’re asking.

Nick: No, I was just, how do people sort of know what good content to create? I think you hit a note pretty well, something that business owners often miss out or they don’t really see because they’re so familiar with how their business works. They feel like it’s boring, it’s not particularly interesting, their processes, but they might not realize that from an outside perspective how that particular process for doing something like creating a tool that does something useful or maybe some video or some stuff from within the company that can be interesting content which can be relatively easy to create and also difficult for competitors to copy because it’s sort of your process.

Woj: Exactly and also, don’t talk about yourself, don’t self-promote. If you are going to talk about yourself, do it in a transparent way. Talk about things that are happening in your business rather than, don’t chest beat and I think you get a lot of success out of that.

Nick: So, the focus being providing value as opposed to advertising. really.

Woj: Yeah exactly because people are getting more savvy. People don’t have that custom preference anymore, like they used to. People aren’t loyal to brands. Things get commoditized over time, so it’s really important to stand out and be memorable at that first point of contact. So, I think you can produce stuff from within your company that can sort of reflect that.

Nick: Yep. Absolutely. You mentioned creativity and again, I’ll put some links in the show notes. You’ve got quite a few creative things on your website with your robot-sort-of logo and your characters and stuff you’ve done within your posts.

Woj: We’re trying to practice what we preach. We’re doing things for our clients, but we’re doing things for ourselves as well. We’re being transparent. It’s a little bit strange, but it’s actually quite worthwhile and it’s interesting because I have some clients that are quite dubious about being transparent, because there is a lot of fear about online world. You have some clients are quite paranoid about identity theft and that sort of thing but you don’t have to be transparent in that kind of way, I mean you can be transparent by just taking photos of your backyard pretty much, figuratively speaking.

Nick: Yeah, it’s sort of almost being real, being a person or letting people know that there are people in your business. It’s often talked about as the corporate face or the corporate wall that is sort of faceless company that people can’t really relate to and that is what you don’t want to be. You want to be sort of real and you want to be sort of friendly and being that, having that transparency is a way for people to sort of feel you out and form a relationship with you almost and feel much better and easier about becoming a customer of you.

So, once people sort of have this content idea, they’ve thought about some stuff in their business or they’ve come up with a great article, a great resource or a great tool, they’ve created it, they’ve got it on their website, how do they get it out there? How do they try to get links, how do they get people to see it?

Woj: So, I guess that’s an important part of the content strategy. So, if we talk about content strategy for a bit, it’s important to get that right, because you really need to plan. You can’t sort of expect a bit of content to work well on itself, it’s like firing fireworks, if people’s watching it at the time, then they will see it but if they’re not looking, they’ll miss it. So, it’s like Twitter, I think there’s like an hour gap for a tweet or something like that. I think there was a study or an article on SEO was from Tweet Deck, not Tweet Deck, Follow gram they did something recently.

You don’t really have much of a chance or if you haven’t planned, so there’s a lot of different distribution channels, you know, social media. Newsletters, newsletters are a really good one because they’re quite direct and it’s sent to an already established audience, but I think building an audience is probably the key. So, doing things like guest posting, but not guest posting in a gung-ho kind of way, putting yourself in front of an audience that’s already established.

Nick: So, guest posting, just a little bit of stop there, that’s where you write a blog post on someone else’s blog, and this could be like an industry blog or industry magazine, an online magazine or some of other related industry which we share similar sort of custom.

Woj: Yeah, exactly. It’s a bit hard because there’s not too many really good Australian ones out there or there are but they’re really hard to get onto but if you search hard enough, there’s ways to sort of get in there. You just have to be creative about things and you have to think outside the box. Nothing is easy.

Nick: If it was easy, everyone would be doing it, so…

Woj: Yeah exactly. There’s no kind of, this is how you get people to link to your stuff, because it depends on your audience but if you create that content strategy, plan things and then maybe even target some different personas, work out with frequent, maybe forums, maybe there’s some niche kind of sites, blogs, maybe influences as well. Get involved with some influences, let them do the work for you.

Nick: So, I think what you’re saying here, it seems like you’re saying, as opposed to creating the content and trying to promote it, more focus on building an audience first, maybe figuring out what kind of content they might like, then creating it and then sort of telling them about it.

Woj: Exactly.

Nick: And you mentioned influences there again, which is, sort of people within the market place who have a lot of influence.

Woj: Exactly, people that already have an established audience. If they’ve already got an established audience, then you already have a leverage of them. I think Tom Crutchlow did a talk, his final talk on SCM was sort of talking about that sort of thing. I can’t remember the guy, he mentioned but he used an example of this guy. He had a big audience following of people and they leverage, they got a guest post in front of all these people and it was very targeted and it was quite successful.

Nick: And so, for the average small business owner, should the audience be like local or should they be like friends within Adelaide or can they look wider to Australia, even if they’re sort of …

Woj: I guess it depends on the context of the article, but yeah, they can. It has to be relevant to the audience. If you’re a local pizza shop, you wouldn’t put an article up on menu log or something and target, talk about the best pizza in Bondi or something like that. You would want to make it local.

Nick: Yep, so you want to be targeting the local audience and probably something else to sort of, the thing about it is not necessarily the largeness of your business, the numbers, it’s really more of the quality. So, if you can have a small audience which is highly targeted, then that’s completely going to be better than the large audience that aren’t really sort of your customer.

Woj: So, it’s the whole kind of referral thing. If you’ve got clients, let them be your advocates and let them be your voice, because they’re already engaged so, let them kind of do some of the work for you in a way but it is hard to sort of initially establish that because it involves planning and finding the right kinds of target, but once you get it …

Nick: Alright. We’ve touched on this question a little bit, but it’s basically with the popularity of social media, it seems like people these days, don’t sort of link so much. They’re more tweeting and sharing on Facebook and sharing on Google Plus. Is this a problem for people wanting to build links?

Woj: Nah, it’s great. I think Google uses social metrics as part of the algorithm as well. I mean it’s a good way to, I mean people are a bit up in the air, some people say yes and some people say no, but I mean, it makes sense. If someone tweets something, then Google can crawl that tweet or even using Google Plus. It knows that it’s being shared and the way they’ve set up Google Plus, where everything is verified and, it’s reasonably hard to set up a fake Google Plus profile. So, I don’t think, I think social adds to link building, you should be out of, like once it comes to putting in front of our audience, then you could tweet the link and it could go quite viral but if you put up a guest post on, let’s go back to the pizza shop example, on pizzaloversgreat.com and there’s no one like reading that article, who’s going to tweet it? Who’s going to, and Google will see that signal and go, this isn’t great.

Nick: Exactly. So, really, people should be thinking about social signals certainly on the positive light as well as links.

Woj: They go hand in hand, because both are great deliverers of inbound traffic.

Nick: Absolutely. So, finishing off this episode, lets finish off with, what are some steps that my listeners can take, to sort of start getting into this link earning thing?

Woj: I guess it depends. If they’re business owners, then they need to start thinking about things differently. If you are already engaged in an SEO agency, stop quantifying your monthly spend by the amount of links acquired, start thinking about planning and aligning all your resources, whether it be your internal staff, external agencies or to a content strategy.

Everyone needs to be on the same page, you need to come up with a core idea and then basically work out a little bit of the work flow, who’s in charge, a core strategy statement that will enable people to be on the same page and also, start thinking about not just SEO but other channels, other free channels. We’re working on a guide at the moment called Inbound Marketing Town, which should be a little map. It will have little, we’ll try to explain I guess the different methods of inbound marketing as little town landmarks, so hopefully that should help.

Nick: Great, yeah. When is that expected to come out?

Woj: We’re working on the graphics at the moment, so, hopefully in the next week or so.

Nick: Great, this episode should be out after that, so I’ll try and put a link in the show notes for that and people can go check it out and just to go back summarizing some of the points we mentioned during the interview. So, audience is something that people should really be thinking about and thinking about early. Trying to pull that audience early and so identify some influences within the market place, and from there we flow into a strategy, mentioned strategy several times, so make sure you have a strategy in mind before you sort of go in there and start just creating content willy nilly.

Woj: Exactly and just make great stuff, be imaginative. Try to get creative, and if you can’t get creative, outsource.

Nick: Outsource, to a friend or person.

Woj: Yeah.

Nick: Great. Well I think that brings us to the end of this episode. We’re going to come back with Woj next episode and talk about some specific examples of link earning. So, certainly tune in for that episode to get your head around this topic a little bit further, but thanks very much for joining us this week and if anyone wants to find out more about you, that’s kwasistudios.com. How’s that spelled?

Woj: K w as i studios.com and you can follow me on Twitter at wojkwasi w o j k w a s i.

Nick: Fantastic.

Woj: Thanks Nick.

Nick: I hope you found that interview useful. You can tune in next week for the second part of my interview with Woj. We’re going to be talking a bit about some examples of link earning campaigns, some pieces of content with links to sort of give you a little bit more of an idea of how the system works and sorts of content that can earn links.

As always, if you want to find any more information about this show, get links and any of the stuff we’ve talked about, links to Woj’s website and his details, head to our website, that’s www.webmarketingadelaide.com.au and there’s show notes for each episode. So, you can go to our index on the menu bar on the top, there’s an index link or you can just go back through the episodes one by one. You can actually listen to the episodes right in the webpage there or you can hit the links off to iTunes or to download the Podcast onto your computer and listen to them later.

As I said, tune in next week for next week’s episode and until then , have a good one.

[/spoiler]
22Nov

Ep#18: How to Get Started with Content Marketing

How to get started on your content marketing strategy

This week is part 2 of my interview with Steve Davis from Baker Marketing about content marketing for small businesses. In part 1 we had an introductory discussion about content marketing and in this episode we move onto some tips for getting started on your content marketing activities and strategy.

Covered in this episode;

  1. What are some ways to brainstorm and generate some unique content ideas?
  2. How often should we be creating content?
  3. How do we get people to come and consume our content?
  4. Do you recommend any tools or services to help get content out to a wider audience?
  5. How do we encourage our content consumers to become our customers?

Links / mentions;

[spoiler title=”Click Here for Transcription” open=”0″ style=”1″]

Nick: Welcome back to Web Marketing Adelaide Podcast. This week, we’re talking about Content Marketing again. We have Part 2 of my chat with Steve Davis from Baker Marketing. In Part 1, we addressed the Introduction to Content Marketing. In this episode, we’re going to delve into how to get started with your content marketing strategy. Let’s hear the interview now.

I’m back here talking with Steve Davis from Baker Marketing about Content Marketing For Small Businesses. In Part 1, we covered a bit of the Introduction to Content Marketing, what it’s all about, and in Part 2 we’re going to be looking into how to do it and what businesses can sort of start getting into it.

Welcome back to the show Steve.

Steve: Thanks Nick.

Nick: Let’s start off with what are some typical pieces of content or content marketing that many sort of, small business owners might have seen around the place that they may be doing, just to sort of get an idea of what some things are out there.

Steve: Ifyou’ve known me for more than 10 seconds, you would know that I’m going to start with the blog. I believe blog articles, are almost like the DNA. They’re the foundation building blocks for content marketing for just about every business type and the reason being, is this sort of content is very, very versatile. First of all, once we’ve sat down and worked out, as we talked about in Part 1, Thinking Through a Marketing Strategy, what are the challenges faced in the business, how do we try and draw more people into or world, what sort of people are we after.

Once we’ve got that sorted out, then we can start thinking about the questions that are going to be floating around in those people’s minds on their journey towards your product or service and blog articles are a great way to lay the bait out there, if you like, and we’re talking online particularly here, Google, the search engines, seem to have a love affair with blog content. Typically, blog articles are short and to the point and they’re focused on a particular topic and they’re updated regularly, all the things that search engines like.

So when I go looking for something which might be how to choose a good sunscreen for my 4 year old, it’s beholden, I think, on anyone, in the cosmetics game or is making those sort of pharmaceutical products, like the sunscreen for instance, have anticipated some of those questions and has got a blog post with a title as specific as that or close to it, as they’re anticipating all the different questions that Moms and Dads might be plugging in, and indeed Childcare Managers etc. might be plugging in to do a little research before they make decisions on what sunscreen for example that they’re going to be buying. So, blog content is great there. It’s easy to produce once you’ve got some training in just what the basic elements are.

The search engines love it and also I think, that if a schedule is going to be stuck to of producing it regularly, it’s to me, the most potent bit of professional development anyone could ask for because someone in that business or a small team is going to be giving themselves permission, and also exercising discipline to sit down once a week, or once a fortnight, whatever it might be, to write something that actually brings the world of their prospect together to their world, in a way that helps Google, the great matchmaker in the sky, bring them together. I don’t know that you can actually buy that sort of professional development. It almost has to be done in-house, from meditating on the marketing plan and meditating deeply on the ideal person you’re trying to court through your marketing. That was a long answer.

Nick: No that’s good. That’s good stuff. I’m glad to hear that you’re an evangelist for blogs because I’m also in that camp as well. I love the blog medium and the good news for business owners of course is that it’s so easy to get into blogging with systems like WordPress out there which is for free. You probably may need some help to set it up the first time but after that it’s fairly easy, fairly intuitive to get in there and just start using it.

Steve: One other thing on top of that, and yes, my heart just skipped a beat when you mentioned WordPress. I have a strong love affair for that. In fact my default position if anyone is looking to build a website these days is if it’s in WordPress, unless you’ve got a really good reason otherwise, I think she’s seeing some figures of the top million websites on the planet and 68% of them are in WordPress. I would have, that is a staggering figure.

It broadens out to about 1 in 5 when you take the whole internet, but in the top million websites, that is a big chunk. Anyway, I digressed – there was something you mentioned there I was going to react to, about WordPress being, oh yes, the other thing about blog articles in they’re easy to share because most WordPress and other blogging software and content management system software does make it easy, if I like an article, to flick it on to someone I know, through my Facebook friends, through my Twitter friends.

And in fact, I heard an article, sorry I read an article, must be about 3 or 4 weeks ago now, with one of the top marketers with Coca-Cola who was saying that the absolute key to success in marketing online these days is to make everything you do shareable and to me, I read 2 things from that. Shareable is I’ve got to like it. It’s got to be interesting in the first place otherwise, it’s not going to be shareable and secondly in some way, in some sort of format that can be flicked on through my network.

You might recall in our first interview, we talked about advertising versus content marketing. The thing about shareable content, is if I share it, my friends are going to be more open to your piece of content that I’m sharing than if you’re paying money to advertise it at them, because it’s coming through a trusted source to them someone like them, well fairly much like them and so there’s a lot more trust when a friend passes something on than an advertiser because advertisers obviously are going to give you the Walt Disney version of their business, but if I like something, then my personal integrity is on the line with my friends if I bother them in passing it on.

Nick: Definitely, definitely, and just a note on WordPress. We mentioned Word Press a couple of times, and my listeners will remember we had an episode about WordPress a few weeks ago. So, if you want a bit more information about WordPress, you can go and check that out.

Now that sort of people know that blogs are a good place to start, how are, what are the type of ways that the business owners can brainstorm ideas for this content element in writing?

Steve: There are so many different ways to do this. If you’ve got a website that’s been going for a while, one of the most obvious things is to look at your analytics. I imagine Google analytics or whatever and have a look deep into the search terms that brought people to your website because apart from just your business name, which is likely to be there towards the top, you’re going to find questions and phrases people have been typing into and to me, that is the signal that this is the sort of content that people are looking for. So that’s one place to start.

There’s another search engine and I’m hoping the name will come back to me in a moment – even though I work in this field all the time, I’m not a great, I’m not given to all the latest hip names on everything, and they go in one area or the other but I’ll follow up for the show notes. There’s a search engine that allows you to say, throw in some URLs, some web addresses, let’s say 10 or so of your closest competitors, and it actually goes through them one by one and it looks for where and how often each page of piece of content of their website has been shared in social media or social networks. To me, that’s fascinating, because you’re going to get a good sense instantly in your sector of what sort of articles are resonating with people out there. You’ll say, wow this has gone crazy on Twitter or there’s a lot of activity, we can produce something like that. So, that gives you an idea on what the market’s after.

Another thing that I find – are you going to me ask me something there?

Nick: I was just going to say that I’ve heard of that search engine also and we’ll definitely have a link in the show notes once we figure out which one it is.

Steve: It will come to me midway through, another coffee and it will be right.

The other thing that I like using, another Google tool actually is, to sit down with the Google Key Word tool at googlekeywordtool.com and punch in some of the key words related to a business and generate a list of all the related terms that Google think are related to your field because, in there, if you sat down with that, and you went word or phrase by phrase and drafted titles for blog posts for example, using these terms, such as, what could be an example, making coffee. Let’s say the coffee realm, so if I looked in for making coffee, then I’m sure Google will bring up how to make coffee, how to make coffee at home, how to make coffee in the office etc.

To me, this is a great insight because you know there’s traffic related to these terms and you can mold them into your world by turning them into article titles because if we know what sort of things our audience is interested in looking for, what we’re after, are idea starters, to try and get ideas out of our head. And one of the ways is that list of articles, about a hundred or so words that Google will give you. If you sat down – I often do this with clients with a bottle of wine involved, takes about an hour and stop each of those words one by one, does this apply to our business or not? Yes or no. If it does, how can we turn it into a title?

We’d make a big list of potential article titles, with maybe a bullet point underneath of what we’d write about in that article and once we’ve done that brainstorming and we’ve got say 52 article titles on that list, that’s a years’ worth of potential articles waiting to be written. To me, I know this because I’ve seen it happen with the thousands of clients I’ve worked with, it breaks the back of the task, because when it comes to blog day with might be Tuesday or Wednesday or Saturday or whatever, even in the busiest, most stressful week, if you’ve got that starter title, you can still churn something out that’s useful and helpful but in the middle of a stressful week, if I just said, write a blog quick Nick, hurry up, our brains tend to freeze, because they like having their focus. So, there are the starting points of the kernel of content.

Nick: Great points. I’ll just mention a few tips that I’ve heard mentioned in the stuff that I use as well with content generation ideas. One, you mentioned Google analytics ad one tip I’ve heard sort of described is where you look at particularly questions that we’ve sort of talked about a little bit but also other terms where someone’s come to your website but then they’ve left really quickly.

If you look at that and see that this is actually relevant to you, if it’s not relevant then you can sort of ignore it, but if it is relevant, they’ve come in and then they’ve left, you know you’re at least ranking somewhere there, assuming such query but you know they weren’t really satisfied with what you had. So, that’s sort of a good, ID for a piece of content where it might be pretty to rank well and go because you already ranked somewhat well for that term and that may be a place to start when you just don’t know where to start.

And one other was a search engine or a tool called ubersuggest, where it actually takes, taps into Google’s auto suggest feature, so, when you’re in Google, when typing in your query, it often come up with a little drop-down with suggestions of what your query might be. This tool, it would suggest, taps into that and gives you a list of suggestions based on a starting query and I’ll have those links again in the show notes for some extra information.

Now, within there, you said, you mentioned 52 pieces of content and you’d have enough for a year. So does that mean that people should be aiming for like a weekly schedule for putting out content or …

Steve: Look, it’s hard to prescribe generally without sitting down with someone, but I think it’s a good rule of thumb, just the way, from my understanding the way the human brain works. You can get a bit of a habit and a ritual going if you’re sticking to something weekly. It also feeds the search engines nicely, so when those spiders come visiting your website, they see there’s a good regular trickle of new content and also, once week within a nice, an original piece of content, builds up a great library for you before too long that becomes quite handy in a way, I often refer to it as the doctor’s bag.

Because I’ve got little children 4 and 2, and every now and then you’ve got to call the locum at 2 in the morning and what always staggered me is, inside the doctors’ bag, there’s always something that fixes the problem. I don’t know how it works or how they do it, for all I know it’s a placebo, but your blog becomes a doctors bag before too long, and you’re shopping on the weekend or you bump into someone at the café, and they are like, Oh you’re that marketing guy, whatever, you get involved in conversation. Yeah, I’ve been meaning to ask you about XY Zero, you will suggest for example, oh yeah. It’s not conducive to a big conversation, but they’re interested in more.

You say, look, I’ve written an article, I reckon was a few months ago on that, can I send you the link? And at that point they can give you their business card, if they don’t have one, you can jot down their email address, jot down what you’re going to send them, and you’ve got this lovely, warm connection with them that’s just about to happen, where they’ll click the link, read the article and at that point in time, they’re reading that on your website because hopefully, that’s where you’re blogging. If they like what they see there, they know how to contact you. I think it’s a win win and so, I rarely go a week without prescribing from my doctor’s bag at least three times. In fact, it’s never been less than that. It’s amazing, once you’ve got a body of work, how often you’re doling out these prescriptions of things to read.

Nick: Right, so, if you are sort of really enthusiastic and want to get on top of it more than once a week then you think that’s – is there any limit as to how many, I mean obviously, is once a day too much or…?

Steve: You know, I think it’s all going to depend, sector by sector. There are going to be some sectors, particularly those if retailers and fashion or where there’s a lot of fast moving things and trends going on that I know, certain market segments are hungry for lots of content. They don’t want to miss anything and that would be fine, however, there are going to be some, where that would just be overkill.

Mind you, I don’t want to make the mistake that some people make that, Oh I’m going to blog and I’m going to be bamboozling everyone, well not necessarily. People can still choose, and one thing I’m careful to say to people is, you’re not writing a serial novel necessarily that someone’s going to be chiming in for week in week out or day in and day out. Often, each article you write is a discreet piece of content, a distinct piece that’s going to float out there in the big Google sea, to attract a certain user with a certain question. It’s case by case, I think on that front.

If you can do it and sustain it, that’s great generally but because of the small business where people are stretched for time, I think weekly is fine, it’s the right balance for most people and through the week of course, you’ve got less intensive things you can share, such as sharing interesting little photographs or snaps or videos, etc. that you can quickly generate and turn around on your smart phone that feed into your social streams, without the brain drain than perhaps, putting a whole blog piece together demands.

Nick: Great. Well there’s some good tips to start with the content creation side of things. I’d like to delve now into the content marketing, or the marketing side of the content marketing thing. So, how should people go about getting this content out, to their audience or their potential customers?

Steve: Firstly, if you’re using WordPress, WordPress is your platform, you’ve done about 70% of the work. Just the way that Google just tends to love how the architecture of the WordPress site is, they can understand and share things.

However it’s not quite enough for the whole job. I think listening to your market, to determine where they gather, to determine what sort of things they’re searching on, what social networks are attracting more of them, that’s important. The most mandatory thing I think, is sharing your content through a Google Plus page. Primarily because Google has made some public statements, people within Google that they are giving added advantage to content shared through Google Plus. So, I’d be sharing links to my content back through there.

That’s a no-brainer but then, thinking strategically about what might interest people around a Facebook page or group or through a Twitter account with some of the content that you’ve shared. So, it’s one thing to write an article, another thing is to invite the hook in different ways to get it out to people. But at the same time, I think that – by the way, a tool I use for it is Hootsuite, huge fan of Hootsuite, the fact that I can disseminate my content across a number of platforms all at once. It’s hard to talk in general terms but I love using Hootsuite as an eavesdropping tool, for listening in on conversations that are using terms that to me, signal someone who is somewhere along my pathway.

Back on the coffee thing, just briefly, both Patrick, from Patrick Baker and I have a little coffee brand called Baristador which we use as a, we do al lot of experimentation with it and one of its key points, the difference, it’s top level espresso coffee but you choose your caffeine strength. So, it’s a niche health market that is there. So, I’ve got a listening search set up inside Hootsuite for the term decaf and coffee together, listening to key markets around Australia, and it’s amazing, you pick up some people who just say decaf coffee and it’s a whole lot of expletives they hate it.

They’re not my market, but when people are saying, I’m really looking to try good decaf coffee, that is where you’ve got the chance to fling them a piece of content from your doctors bag if you like. You say oh, here’s an article that helps, or is it possible to have more espresso in the day without feeling too horrible and cramped in your stomach. Well I’ve written a blog post on the Baristador site around that topic, so they’ve asked publicly. I said look, here’s an article than may help you with that thing. So you can actually then start using this body of content that answers questions that people are asking in the real world.

Nick: Great, great, great topic. Let’s sort of look at again, past the marketing, into sort of the conversion world. How should we or how should business owners be encouraging these people who are consuming their content to actually become customers?

Steve: I think a lot of that’s going to come down to where that person is along in the purchase decision process. The beauty of content marketing, is, if you’ve considered the typical marketing sales funnel, we put a big wide end and it goes into a narrow end. The narrow end, the point at which the sale actually happens but way out in the broad pit, we don’t know that we need that product or service yet.

A lot of the content you’ll find out there isn’t going to go necessarily go straight to the conversion but what it does do is to bring order out of the chaos for someone. Like for example, I’m dabbling in an android device at the moment. I’ve been an IOS man for a long time and so I’ve been looking at content marketing articles written by people whom I have a sense of trust about to give me some guidance on what are the better ones to choose. So, they’re not necessarily into direct sale just yet, I am narrowing my field.

Now it just so happens, if some of those are vendors, then, they’re on my shortlist so that when I have made my decision, they may not get the sale, but they are on the shortlist and one of the outcomes of most marketing pursuits, is to get you on to the shortlist of a consumer. We all make shortlists, sometimes we’re not aware of it because it’s an inconsequential decision. You’re walking down the street to buy ice cream, or coffee. It’s a short list, there’s 2 cafés, you just make a quick decision and off you go. More elaborate ones like getting another piece of electronic device in my house, past my wife, needs to have a lot more thought that goes into it so I can justify that and so, I am going to rely on that content and I will owe something to the people who have helped bring clarity on the way.

I think that movement towards a conversion can happen without being obnoxious about it. I think gently making reference to your Top 5 picks of android devices for example, which might then go to a different page, where there they all are, not only with your ratings but with the ability to order one now or buy one now. To me, that’s a soft sell, that’s a nice way to graduate the movement.

Another situation might be one where perhaps in the health field, where you can’t really prescribe publicly, but you can say look, these are the things to be concerned about in this field, let’s correct the sunscreen for children that we talked about in podcast 1. For making the final decision, maybe even think about your child’s skin type and allergies, please make an appointment to talk to one of our doctors or nurses who can help you with those final decisions. I think gently letting people know what the next step is, what we call the call to action, is a rightful thing to have in this content, but the way you do it should come after some good content.

It doesn’t hurt though, when they’re reading content to have direct calls to action in the side column where there might be special offers, waiting for people to pursue it because if there’s one thing we know about humans, they hate being sold to, but they love buying. If your content marketing is helping me on this journey, an enjoyable journey of making a choice, no there it is, beckoning for me to make the sale on the corner, then I’m in control and I can click that through and feel like I’ve owned the whole process. I don’t feel like I’ve been hood-winked into it.

Nick: Great, great tips and I suspect that this question will be a fairly varied answer but is there some sort of a guideline you can give us to how long business owners should expect to wait, or how long will it take before they start seeing results from content marketing strategy.

Steve: Your preamble is correct. The answer is it depends. It depends on the size, the expense, the complexity of the purchase decision. How many choices there are on the market? I’ve had situations where it’s turned around very quickly, within weeks people are generating sales, but others where it’s taken a lot longer when they’re talking about people buying a $5,000 or $6,000 charter for example, going back to my fishing company. That may not be the most expensive thing they’re ever going to buy but they’re also going to talk to friends and then get dates organized. So you have to be realistic, about what’s going on in the world of the customer to make that final purchase decision.

So, I wish I could just dole out one, I can’t. It does depend on a case by case basis but also, even within the one enterprise, product by product or service by service. There’s going to be some products or services in your portfolio that are much easier to move towards a transaction and buy. There are going to be others that take longer, so even with the one company, there’s going to be differences across the spectrum.

Nick: Yep, yep. So is there any tips or statistics or ways that you can give for people to sort of know they’re on the right track. If it could take a long time perhaps, start seeing the results of from this content marketing stuff they’re doing. How can they make sure they’re staying on track and that they’re doing the right things?

Steve: So, again, this is an it depends question, because what you’re asking for their benchmarks if you like, or milestones to know that you’re heading towards the right destination, and you’re making progress. Some people just look at sheer numbers of are you maintaining the number of blog posts, are you getting a certain number of likes or a certain degree of traffic, or is your bounce on your website starting to shrink and not be too high? At Baker Marketing, aside from that, we’ve got an age old little formula we use, that whenever someone’s – apart from finding some benchmarks that works on a case by case basis, at the back of our minds and at the back of our talk, it is always just one thing.

If someone is saying, we just don’t think what we’re doing is working, the formula is frequency x reach x quality. So, often, people say it’s not working, and you look back through let’s say the blog articles or the videos they’ve been making, and they bore you to death. They are irrelevant, or they’re stodgy or they’re hard sell and they just not, people are not going to rate them, so quality would die there. There may be a writing great quality, but what’s the reach? How many of your target market are actually getting to see them?

It may be well to have it there in your website, but where have you drip feathered into a forum or shared it to an answer, a question someone’s asking in LinkedIn answers or on Twitter etc. That’s one thing and frequency, how often have you been producing and or sharing this content? What we have found, in the 12, 14 years we’ve been practicing, is that 1 of those factors or 2 is often the smoking gun if you’re not generating sales at the other end, which is what that formula leads to and that’s a handy little rule of thumb to bear in mind. That will determine where there needs more effort to be placed.

Nick: Absolutely, that makes sense. I think we’ll wrap it up there. Thanks very much Steve for all your insights on content marketing. It’s been a really great chat on this episode, on the last episode as well. If business owners want to get the ball rolling on content marketing, what would be sort of your one tip for how they should get started?

Steve: Well, if they happen to be anywhere around South Australia, I would get them to take advantage of our little chat with Patrick himself. He makes himself available for an hour chat free of charge. That is not a sales spiel, it’s actually a solid little chat out of which often comes a good sense of strategic direction, even within that first hour, and to me, everything I talk about has to, needs to, must come from that setting of the compass, which is the marketing strategy, the base of any of the operations. If they do that, to me, that’s making most sense of it. If they’re not going to do that, then taking stock themselves of what are the big challenges faced in the company? Where do they, what have they set themselves to go and what sort of content is going to be most helpful for the type of market they’ve identified.

So, I wish there was something to say, just go ahead and start writing a blog, but if we don’t know which direction we’re heading, we’re going to have a lovely journey, and we’ll look at some scenery, but we may never get to the stage we actually care about.

Nick: And before I let you go, I just wanted to touch on some of the workshops and things. I know I’ve just been seeing the name, Baker Marketing, popping up everywhere. If someone’s ever going to get this same interview with you because you taught different occasions where you go and do workshops everywhere. Can you tell us a little bit about these events and how business owners can sort of get involved?

Steve: First thing, get involved. I would just give out office a call or have a look on our website, but nothing quite beats just making direct contact, bakermarketingservices.com because the people in the office there have the big master plan of wherever we’re heading and where I’m going. Strangely enough, I’m often the last person to ask. I just look at my calendar and off we go.

The sort of things we’re doing, we’ve been lucky enough to win a number of the attenders for the National Broad Band Network, to roll out some marketing for small business and small organization programs in South Australia and Northern Territory and so, they take people through the basics of thinking through IT requirements, Marketing requirements etc., Business systems in the oncoming culture of having access to the NBM to get them right. So, that’s one form of workshop.

Other are business enterprise centers and other organizations get us in, what have I done recently? Strategic blogging, I’ve done particular workshops for that also, executive board strategy presentations, just for board members to get ahead around the concepts. We do practical ones on using some of the social media tools. One of the most popular ones that comes up all the time as we shoot out into the regions, is starting with the basis on blogging and then moving through how to get that information now.

As a matter of fact, at the time that we’re recording this, I’m heading off to the Coonawarra, for women in business regional development running to intensive days of a social media master class, doing the keynote talk in the evening, having some one on one meetings with people. So, we basically run a lot of workshops on all the aspects of marketing and we just get approached non-stop to do that and that means I am on the road a lot of the time doing it.

What I love about it, is you get that instant feedback form people, you can see arms crossed when they’re defensive, when they first hear that I’m going to be challenging some of their thoughts and making them do a bit more extra work, to go a bit harder for their business and that’s the battle, to help them relax, help them see they’ve got no choice, but there are some smart ways to manage their time to make it sustainable.

I don’t know how well that answered your question but, many ways, shapes and forms, these workshops take and turning up so many, you no doubt at some point, there’s programs running through the hills between Onkapringa region and through Darwin at the moment along with one offs here and there.

Nick: Great, great and I’ll put some links in the show notes as well to where you can find out some more information about that.

Thanks very much Steve, for coming on the program. It’s been really fantastic having you. Where can people find out more about Baker Marketing, at the website? Is it the best place?

Steve: I think it’s the place. I’ll give you 2 things, 1 is the website which is bakermarketingservices.com and I encourage you to pop on there but also on Twitter, it is probably as good as anywhere, baker_marketing is our Twitter handle.

One thing I forgot to mention is the first Sunday of every month, in the evening, I’m on 5AA with a regular radio program talking about things happening on the web and also profiling websites that I find interesting around South Australia and beyond. So, I encourage people to listen out for that and I’m happy to connect on Twitter, at stevedavis, all one word.

Nick: Great, fantastic. Well thanks again for coming on the show and enjoy the rest of your trip up to Coonawarra.

Steve: Pleasure Nick. I’ll have a drink for you.

Nick: Cheers!

I hope you enjoyed that second episode with Steve Davis. If you didn’t hear the first episode, then you should go back to episode number 17 and check that out as well. If you want any more information about any of the stuff we discussed in this episode, head to the show notes on the website, that’s www.webmarketingadelaide.com.au. It’s got links to Steve’s website, Baker Marketing website, the social profiles that we discussed, various links to different tools and things we learned during the episode. So go there, check out those links. If you’ve got any feedback or if you’ve got any ideas for future shows, hit the feedback link in the menu at the top and send your feedback through. I’ll see you next week. Bye.

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