The Internet Marketing Driver: Glenn Gabe's goal is to help marketers build powerful and measurable web marketing strategies.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Recapping Day One at SES NY, Key Points (Tweets) From Each Session

Day one at SES NY was fast and furious. I attended some some great sessions and I also made my first pass through the expo. One thing was definitely clear, there's a lot of talk about social with search and search with social. :) This isn't news for many people in the industry, but when the keynote for a search conference is all about Twitter, you know search and social are seriously overlapping!

I've been tweeting as much as possible from each session, and it seems to be valuable for many of the people following my updates. So, I decided to take some of the key points from day one and include them as bullets below. To keep up with day two and three, definitely follow me on twitter! Without further ado, here are some key points from each session I attended on day one.

Keynote from Guy Kawasaki: (Twitter as a Tool for Social Media)

* Nobodies are the new somebodies. It doesn't matter who you are, you can be noticed and build up a following on Twitter.
* Guy highly recommends the auto-dm, or automatically following someone back when they follow you. Glenn: I disagree, but he's got 91K followers! :)
* He wants people to reply (@) or direct message (DM) him, which reinforces his point for auto-dm's (In order to direct message someone, they need to be following you.)
* The retweet (RT) is his key metric. That's when someone passes along your tweet to their followers and gives you credit. He battles mashable every day. :)
* Guy uses some interesting methods for getting tweets out to a targeted audience. Some might even consider it spam... :)
* Use advanced commands in twitter search to find tweets at a granular level.
* Use Tweetdeck or Twhirl to manage your twitter accounts. Twhirl enables him to manage two accounts simultaneously. Tweetdeck doesn't, but tweetdeck has some outstanding features for filtering updates. Sounds like the two need to merge. :)
* You need to squeeze the trigger on twitter and "go". If you don't, you are missing a huge opportunity.
* You need to be able to take the heat on twitter. He created a new acronym UFM. If you don't like what I say? Unfollow me! Glenn: I like his philosophy.

Meaningful SEO Metrics: Going Beyond the Numbers

* You need to track rankings, traffic, conversions, sales, and repeat visitors. Many companies will need to customize their web analytics setup. Great point by @seocatfish
* Don't forget about Universal Search, opportunities for images, video, shopping, local, etc. Don't just focus on text listings as success (more on this later).
* Understand the difference between brand terms, non brand terms, head terms, long tail terms, etc.
* Track microconversions to better understand which keywords and categories work for your business.
* Ensure your analytics package is set up correctly. Don't take the data at face value. Ensure it's accurate or you can base future changes on bad data. Glenn: that last line is from me. :)
* Seth Besmertnik from Conductor says SEO spend is too low at companies. Glenn: I like him already.
* Fortune 500 companies are doing a terrible job at seo, based on their recently released study.
* Lack of predicting and forecasting is hurting seo...marketers are confused by it.
* What's your SEO opportunity? Try this: overall target keyword volume x ctr x conversion rate x avg sale.
* Sales attribution is a big problem. Last click is not good enough.
* Metrics bridge the gap between seo and your company.

Key Points to Launching a Global Website: (Note, I interviewed Motoko Hunt a few weeks ago about international SEO.)

* Don't disregard traffic to websites outside of the US.
* Run ranking reports in local markets (versus just focusing on US-based data).
* Although your website might rank well here in the US, it may not rank at all in country-specific search engines.
* Several factors contribute to how you rank in local search engines, including hosting, ccTLDs, inbound links, etc. Just throwing a copy of your website up might not work...
* You need strong local market teams (which can be a challenge if you aren't familiar with consultants and agencies in the region.)
* Understand seasonal trends FOR THE COUNTRY YOU ARE TARGETING. If you focus on US seasonal trends, you can lose opportunities.
* Keyword research is critical and make sure your local teams are heavily involved and driving that research (including translation).
* Yes, localizing content takes money and resources.
* You can use Google Webmaster Tools to geo-target directories on your website. This is an alternative to using ccTLD's.

Universal and Blended Search:

* With Universal Search, you need to think beyond just text. Think images, video, shopping, news, blog posts, etc.
* Pay attention to what currently ranks in vertical search for your target keywords. That content may very well end up in the blended results. It also gives you ideas for targeting universal search for your company or clients.
* Some good examples include searching for Oscars or March Madness (Glenn: those were the Live Search examples). Also, search for Rihanna in Yahoo.
* Yahoo: Take advantage of Search Monkey to have greater control of what's displayed in the SERPs. Yahoo has streamlined the process for developers so it's easier to use and implement. (Glenn: this is definitely worth checking out and trying.)
* is blending the Q&A channel into the search results (good idea if you have content that answers direct questions. (i.e. FAQ content on your website).
* Vic Drabicky from Range: Now, search people are not just the text dorks sitting in a corner. Search now includes YouTube, Flickr, blogging, Facebook, etc.
* There's a lot you can learn from Kate Moss, who hired an online reputation management company. Vic recommends that you start doing some searches to check out what ranks for Kate...
* Consensus: There needs to be better tracking of universal search results so marketers understand how visitors interacted with the results and how that impacted conversion.

Video SEO:

* 72% of searches on YouTube are music related. (Glenn: if you watch how teenagers interact with YouTube, you can see why so many use it... it's their knee-jerk reaction for listening to music.)
* YouTube optimization: the basics include optimizing your text based on keyword research. That includes the title, description, and tags.
* Use the full space you have in YouTube for your description. Too many people overlook this and write a one liner...
* TubeMogul can help you distribute your video to many video sharing websites.
* No matter who you are, you can produce your own YouTube videos. (Glenn: I agree, but it's not ultra-easy to produce quality video content. Test it out and seek assistance, if needed.)
* You can add your videos to the local listings via Google Local Business Center. Glenn: This is commonly overlooked by small businesses.
* YouTube ranking factors include keywords, tags, ratings, view counts, channel views, playlists, flagging, embeds, comments, age, etc.
* Use YouTube's search suggestion feature for keyword research. (Glenn: I also recommend this, and have used this for my own projects.)
* Community factors are important for ranking in YouTube. Analyze your competition in YouTube and meet or beat their statistics.
* Attention span for video is increasing (~4 minutes up from ~2 minutes). Professional video could be playing a factor in the increase.
* Matthew Liu from Google: YouTube has hundreds of millions of users per month. It's the fourth largest web property and every minute over 15 hours of video is uploaded.
* Don't keyword stuff in YouTube. You will be penalized. Glenn: Hey readers, that's right from Google. :)
* Share videos with other members, experiment with annotations, and avoid spamming people.
* Utilize YouTube Insight to optimize your video content based on analytics. Weezer used Insight to analyze their music video Pork and Beans. They noticed their demographic was older, male, and heavily viewed videos via embed. They now tailor campaigns, based on that data.

Again, the sessions on day one provided some great information. I'm eager to hit day two, including a closer look at the expo. If you want to follow my SES stream for day two and three, then definitely follow me on Twitter. My tweets will start at 9AM. :)


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  • At 8:22 AM, Anonymous Stacey Uhrig said…

    Gabe - thanks for this. Wasn't able to make it yesterday - this is great!!! Following you on twitter all day - it's like i'm there ;-)...

  • At 6:54 PM, Blogger Glenn Gabe said…

    Thanks Stacey. I'm glad you enjoyed my ses ny twitter stream! More to come tomorrow. :)


  • At 12:36 AM, Blogger mcm said…

    Thanks Glenn - a great article! It is great to know the latest from NY.
    Karen - Australia :)


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