Alternatives In Search – Expand Your Search

Don’t Get Caught In A Search Engine Rut

Our daily use of the same search engines may seems trivial but in reality it hurts not only our business it hurts our customers as well. Each search engine has a series of algorithms that favor some website while excluding others, this favoritism may be deliberate, it may be the result of lack of space on a search result page or the preference may be based on nothing more than an overly complicated algorithm. Whatever the reason a search engine has for its bias the end result may be that you, your business and your customers are not getting the results they need or want. Continue reading

Step Up The Quality of Your Content Creation

Things Change and Creating Content and SEO are not Immune

    1. It used to be we would try to get all our back links built around a couple of keywords so we could dominate search results for those keywords. And if you are still doing that now it’s time to change your tactics. The gold standard is having links pointing back to your website composed of longer phrases that likely occur in everyday speech and writing.Example: Businesses formerly used keywords of one or two words such as Ice Cream, Ice Cream Vendor or Frozen Desserts as anchors for backlinks. Now you want those words as part of a longer sentence where 5 or 6 words are part of the actual link such as, Every summer there is a rush at the local corner stores for premium ice cream. This is more natural and offers an easy way to incorporate variety into your linking campaign. People and Search engines will more easily understand the meaning of the link.


    2. Another mantra being heard over and over is, the more content you create the better you will rank in search results. This way of thinking can put a wrench in your business plan for success.Think about it this way, with so many people creating such a huge deluge of content fewer there is a smaller and smaller chance of anyone seeing your content. The trick is to create content that is fresh and engaging, create content that grabs hold of the reader and won’t let go until they’ve finished reading it. Oh sure you want to create more but it has to answer real questions and give the reader something they can use right away.


    3. Recent studies have shown the readers have become bored with the daily content that most businesses produce and are just skipping it. Interactive and remarkable is what more and more users have come to expect if they are going to give their time to your content.Here’s a presentation from Slide Shore that delves deeper into the marrow of the matter.


Here’s a presentation from SlideShare that delves deeper into the marrow of the matter.

Grab Peoples Attention Headline Tips

From time to time we all smash our head against the desk or maybe the keyboard wondering why our posts aren’t read by more people. In our quest to create a headline that will grab a readers attention we often end up create the dreaded “informative” headline that states the facts and leaves the excitement somewhere out on Route 66. Why does this happen so often and why is it so hard to create an engaging headline?

Headlines are either magnetic attraction or sloppy noodle soup, one pulls at your emotions while the other casts a shade of gray over your mind. Just think about what attracts you to click the mouse and read a story, the story could be about a woman eating Hula-hoops for breakfast but if the headline is: A Different Idea For Breakfast as opposed to Woman’s Bizarre Breakfast Routine – You Won’t Believe It!    Which one would you click on first?  Now be honest, no one will be looking over you shoulder…

I came across a post written by Megan Marrs over at Wordstream the other day that hits the nail on the headline, so to speak. Meagan lays out 19 great headline tips for all of us to consider. I’ve picked just 6 out of those 19 for you to check out and of course these is a link at the bottom to the complete post where you can dive into lots and lots more info.

The most important tip I have is Write You Headline First. If you have the headline staring you in the face you can craft your story to connect with that headline, your readers will love you and so won’t the dreaded search engines…


“3. Demonstrate Your Value

In our post about social media landing pages, we talk a lot about pushing
your value proposition – explaining to visitors why your offer
is valuable. In a way, your article headline needs to do the
same, although more subtly. You want to explain to readers, in
so many words, why your article is worth reading.

Ex. Create an Eye-Catching Infographic in Minutes

The headline above promises a fast (and therefore, probably
also easy) way to crate high-quality infographics. Sounds like
it’s worth reading more about! Promising a desired result
(eye-catching infographics) within a set time period (minutes)
is a classic winning headline writing strategy.

They key is to prove that you are useful and that you are
providing essential info!

4. Breed Distrust

Us humans can be a cynical bunch, and we’ll often jump at the
chance to read about how we are being manipulated, deceived, or
given the run around.

Headline writing examples:

  • 6 Lies Your Car Dealer Will Try to Tell You
  • Is Your Doctor Telling the Truth About Prescribing Your
    Kids Ritalin?
  • Sun Damage is Bad, But is Sunscreen Even Worse?

6. Readers Should be EXCITED to Read Your

It’s your job to get reader psyched about reading your post.
They should feel like a couple of kids at the entrance of
Disney World.

People aren’t going to read your boring, dry drivel. You are
not on their summer reading list. If a 7th grader
gets to choose between reading Great Expectations or
Harry Potter, you can be sure as hell they won’t need
to sleep on the decision. You’re going head to head with other
snappy headlines, so you best bring your A game.

Where would you spend your summer? The waterpark or the
shovel museum?

7. Don’t be Afraid to Embellish

The best blog post headlines aren’t afraid to sell themselves.
Embellish. Exaggerate. Entice.

Is substituting carrot sticks for potato chips a “secret” to
losing weight? Not really, but you can act like it is
in an article entitled “The Ultimate Diet Secrets for
Shedding Serious Pounds
.” Don’t be afraid to take a few
liberties in headline writing.

A sense of urgency doesn’t hurt either:

  • Make the Most of Holiday Shoppers – Don’t Miss Out!
  • Don’t Buy a Home Without Asking Your Real-Estate Agent
    These 8 Questions

13. Brainstorm Lots of Different Headlines

Some experts suggest that writers should devote 80% of
their time writing headlines
– put your effort into
the most important element. Set aside time to brainstorm a
healthy smorgasbord of headlines. For a headline
writing exercise, try writing at least 10 headlines,

each with a different structure or with verb and adjective
variations. See which feels the most appealing and ask
coworkers for their opinions.

You really need to sit down and brainstorm to get those snappy
headline juices flowing. You might not hit that headline
writing sweet spot until you’re a few headlines in – chances
are the first headline you come up with will never be
your best.

15. Ask Questions

Asking the reader a question helps draw them in, and
punctuation helps catch the eye, similar to the way numbers and
digits do.

  • Think You Know SEO? Quiz Yourself and Find Out!
  • Do You Want to Build a Snowman? Read This Guide First.”

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Live Your Brand the Way Your Customers Do

I came across this interview with Brian Solis recently and I want to share it with everyone and anyone who may happen upon this blog. What struck me most among a lot of good food for thought was in the last paragraph Solis quotes Tolstoy,

“Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.”

This little quote sums up where business owners and managers find themselves today in the world of customer service and social media. Most companies still put the customer 2nd or in some cases don’t even think about what the customer is thinking at all. It’s what Don Juan called Self Importance, thinking that your thoughts and ideas are a reflection of reality and the world as a whole.

If you as a business owner decide that your ideas and thoughts are the same as your customers ideas, you’re in for a rocky ride and subject to what Solis calls Digital Darwinism which says that technology and society evolves with or without you. In today’s business market the customer has tools and information like never before and these add up to Choice. Choice is a very powerful concept and one that will leave those businesses that fail to evolve in the dust.

It’s important to Live Your Brand and not just manage it. People that you know and people that you don’t know are interacting with your brand everyday, most of those interactions never even come across your radar. What are your customers thinking about your brand?

Here’s a little of the interview with Brian Solis.

Digital Darwinism is Real:

PR News: You point out that the way people
connect and communicate has changed, and only those
organizations that can adapt to these changes will survive.
Taking that to the personal level, what must professional
communicators do to survive and thrive?

Solis: Digital Darwinism is very real. And it
supposes that technology and society evolves with or without
us. Unfortunately, I see many PR pros and marketers trying to
take their prior experience and apply it to this digital world.
The future of our careers and our role in both the revolution
and evolution is to start with an open mind to see what’s
different, to see how things have changed. And then develop
strategies that move us in new directions. Much of what’s
taking place today evokes common psychological responses such
as denial, skepticism and derision. Unfortunately that gets in
our way of seeing where we can learn and change in a world that
is changing before us.

PR News: What is one takeaway you want
Social Media 20/20 Summit attendees to bring back to their
daily tasks?

Solis: I’m reminded of a Tolstoy quote:
“Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of
changing himself.” What I want people to take back is to
realize that they can’t sit and wait for someone to show them
the path forward. This is a time where the people in that room
in San Francisco and the people reading this now have to
realize that change happens because of them—because of what
they’re going to do to change the future right now.

The sooner people realize that they are the change
agents, the faster change comes.

Read the complete interview with just a click.

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Digital Disruptive Innovation Is Here To Stay

Small Business Can Depend On Digital Disruptive Innovation Being Here To Stay

digital disruptive innovation in small business

It wasn’t too long ago that disruption meant someone making too much noise in a public place, now words like disruption and innovation are part of the conversation within every . And Digital has become an enabling term to many businesses but remains a barrier to others. Continue reading

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