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Search Marketing: Still the Killer App for Online Marketing

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Presentation Ben Lloyd gave for the Portland Business Journal's Biz Dev Seminar series. Covers the ROI of search marketing, SEO fundamentals, and how to integrate SEO & Social Media Marketing.

Presentation Ben Lloyd gave for the Portland Business Journal's Biz Dev Seminar series. Covers the ROI of search marketing, SEO fundamentals, and how to integrate SEO & Social Media Marketing.

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  • Thanks Kant
    That's a good question regarding multimedia. Search engines/Google are working very hard to include multimedia in their results - which is why you see youtube videos, images, etc in results (in search marketing - we refer to this as 'universal search'. However - they don't actually crawl/index the multimedia itself. They look to clues that come with a video or image - primarily text, links, URLs, etc - to figure out it's relevance for a particular query. If in fact you do get a video or an image into search results - it typically shows up in a good position on page one. The principle is the same though - search engines look mostly at text and links (and social media signals) to figure out how to rank something. People are prone to share images & videos (think infographics, viral videos) which can generate lots of social mentions & shares, links, etc. Thus providing the cues that Google needs to determine the relevance of that piece of content.

    I have another presentation with tips on optimizing content for universal search - see the presentation 'SEO Tips for Universal Search' on my site: http://www.amplify-interactive.com/resources/sem-presentations/

    hope that answered your question
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  • I really like your presentation; listened to it twice and shared with my colleagues. Thanks.
    I have a couple of questions:

    On your slide 7, you mention that search engine does only two things: read text and follow links. And, in slides 8 and 9, you expand on that thought and say that images don't add value.

    But what about multimedia?

    I ask this because I saw another Slideshare (http://www.slideshare.net/jamescollier/the-social-cookbook) in which the author says the following on Slide 13: 'Google loves multimedia content and as a result can award a higher organic search position....'

    Can you please comment on this multimedia aspect of Google?
    1. Has Google changed its search algorithm? If so, how to leverage multimedia on a website?
    2. Or, am I interpreting this information incorrectly?

    Thank you very much.
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  • Get a copy of Amplify's whitepaper that goes in-depth on this same subject here: http://bit.ly/9MKa8J
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  • SEO = Green PPC = Red We’re going to focus today’s conversation on SEO (GREEN). Paid is plenty exciting, but it’s a fairly straightforward proposition - buy a keyword, put up an ad, get some clicks. It’s actually much more complex than that to run a profitable campaign, but in terms of developments in search marketing - it’s very process oriented and technical.
  • Hard to Gauge? Search are among the easiest to measure and most certain tactics - which also makes them valuable and less susceptible to budget cuts Capturing leads/prospects/potential customers with search and adding them to your house email marketing list can really boost the effectiveness of your overall program
  • Search gives you the power to better understand your target audience and reach potential customers while they’re actively looking for something. This is different than traditional interruption and frequency-based marketing You can put your site in front of these searchers through paid ads, and by getting it to rank “organically” In order to get your site ranked for your keywords - you’ve got to start by focusing on aligning your content - this is what people typically think of when they think of SEO.
  • To date, the focus of this principle has been aimed squarely at your own web site - So, we optimize a site and beg borrow and steal for links to get it ranked These principles still very much apply, but the advent of social has changed the techniques and the focus Let’s briefly look at how it works
  • So - let’s look at SEO step one. Aligning your content. This will give you a basic idea of where to start in understanding how your site is doing with search engines
  • Optimizing individual pages barely scratches the surface of what on-site optimization is. Google actually provides quite a bit of information about how they view your site via their Webmaster tools and they provide quite a bit of guidance via webmaster central… Or you can just hire a firm like ours to help you focus on the important stuff for your particular situation.
  • The frustrating thing about SEO for most site owners is that on-site optimization will only take you so far. If none of your competitors are doing SEO, then you can actually do pretty well - but this is not typically the case these days… So - you’ve got to learn how to develop these other factors
  • Let’s revisit something that Dayn touched on that will help us understand how to build on those key factors for SEO… and how they apply to your entire presence. 1 - you can use these mediums to improve the rankings of your site 2 - in order for that to work, you also have to apply those SEO principles to each one of these mediums. In other words - in order for your efforts on these platforms to work - you have to “optimize” your presence on each one. Not only the words you use in your profile - but you have to build trust/authority/links/followers/fans/favorites for each one.
  • THEN Google will look at these other profiles as an extension of your brand… and you’ll be able to put them to work for your site
  • The simple reality is that even for a product search that’s specific to a brand, potential customers are exposed to many more sources than just the brand’s site… and brands have little to no control over them. But you can INFLUENCE what appears in the results for your branded terms and ideally make sure your site or one of the properties that you control appears at the top of the results by understanding how search engines consume content and how your marketing efforts can be leveraged for search. These are the basics of what we call “online reputation management”


  • 1. Search Marketing: (Still) the Killer App of Marketing Your Business Online
  • 2. PAID RESULTS VS ORGANIC (SEO) “SEM” Refers to Both PPC - 20% of Clicks SEO 80% of Clicks
    • Over 80% of all Internet traffic begins at a search engine
    • 63% of users research buying decisions online
    • 61% of users visit your brand Website before buying (even if buying offline)
    • Consumers turn to information sources that aren’t your Web site
      • Search is about “getting found”
      • You’ve got to extend your brand
  • 4. SPEND YOUR MONEY ON SEM MarketingSherpa 2009-2010 Search Marketing Benchmark Report
  • 5. Traditional Keys to Search Marketing
  • 6. HOW (AND WHY?) DOES SEARCH WORK? Speak the same language as your target audience Keywords are like market research
    • Read Text and Follow Links
    • Rankings are based on those 2 cues alone
    • This is the past, present and future of search
    • Influence Rankings
    • Title Tag - unique to every page
    • Body Copy - if you don’t say it, don’t expect to rank for it
    • Anchor Text
    • Categorized Content & Cross Links
  • 9. SEO PRIMER: WHAT SEARCH ENGINES SEE #1 SEO Take Home Tip: Turn Images and JavaScript off and review your site… This is how a search engine sees your site
    • Same Page with Images Turned Off
    • Can Still Navigate
    • Can Still Read Copy
    • Image Links Replaced with Text Links
    • If You CAN’T Get Around Your Site This Way - Neither Can a Search Engine Spider
  • 11. On-Site Optimization is Absolutely Critical… … But How Do You Win?
  • 12. AUTHORITY MAKES SEARCH GO Authority: Links = Authority = Rankings The takeaway? On-site optimization is critical, but links and other off-site factors are a tremendous part of the ranking algorithm -Source: 2009 SEOmoz study “Search Engine Ranking Factors”
  • 13. BUT SEARCH IS NOW BIGGER THAN YOUR SITE The Content and the Experience Matter - Not the Container
  • 14. FUTURE OF SEARCH SEM & Other Disciplines Need to Work Together to Build Authority
  • 15. SEARCH IS BIGGER THAN YOUR SITE A Practical Example
  • 16. SEARCH IS BIGGER THAN YOUR SITE A Practical Example
    • LESSONS?:
    • Build and curate your presence
    • Own your reputation
    • Everything that goes online can be leveraged for search
  • 17. BUT YOU ARE NOT IN CONTROL 3rd Party Site
    • Content is indeed still king
      • But content takes many different forms
      • Search engines are trying to present the most timely & relevant content
    • Marketers have got to become content generators
      • Content will beget links (authority)
      • Links will beget rankings
      • Social is an opportunity to create links with content
    • So, combine your SEO & social efforts
  • 19. Build Authority: Social Supports SEO Social Media Reaches the People With the Power to Link
    • Appealing to the types of users who have the power to link will generate more links, which raises a site’s authority
    • What Types of Users Link?
    • Website/Blog owners (ie – they have the ability to link!)
    • Participate in social media sites, forums & groups
    • Looking for great “stories” to share
  • 20. WHAT MAKES CONTENT SHAREABLE? Find relevance between your keywords and current trends & topics Tap into topics of discussion around a keyword Latch on to current topics - find a tie-in
  • 21. HEDGE YOUR BETS - KNOW THE PLAYING FIELD 7 Scientifically Proven Ways to Get Shared on Facebook - Dan Zarella, HubSpot, FastCompany - 2010
    • Both SEO & Social thrive on content
      • Create timely content to increase the likelihood of sharing
    • Organizations & marketers must adapt
      • Marketing organizations must become publishers
    • Break down barriers to publishing
      • Timeliness is key
      • You need a blog
      • Does IT or Legal = business prevention? Fix it.
    • Learn to listen, engage
  • 23. So that’s what’s happening with search now - But what’s in store for the future?
  • 24. Are Users Searching on Social Sites?
    • Only for people
    • “ Lazy Web” or “Crowdsourcing” > Users ask for ideas & recommendations
      • Become part of the network
      • Join the conversation
      • Have a good reputation
    • Users fan/follow brands
      • Be findable
    • Users give opinions on brands
      • Monitor and engage
    • Users attend offline events / meet ups to connect over similar interests
      • Connect & win fans offline (engage/sponsor/support/organize)
  • 25. Google’s Take - Social Circle
    • Integrating content from your connections
    • Impact: You’ve gotta be connected
    • Mobile Internet usage is exploding with the adoption of smart phones
    • Mobile searchers are task-oriented, close to converting
    • You must consider the mobile experience for your visitors
      • Are content needs & conversion points different?
    • What about an App?
    • Many times mobile visits are a result of social apps - sharing is likely to result in mobile visits
      • Is your content mobile-friendly?
    • PPC can be targeted at mobile
    • SEO is about the same, but what do the results look like?
    • Know your keywords & put your finger on the pulse
    • Optimize your site
    • Build authority
      • No social strategy? Get one.
      • Make sure SEM, PR, Social & Creative are talking
      • Content - remove barriers to nimble & frequent publishing
    • What’s your mobile strategy?
  • 28.
    • THANKS!
    • Get the paper:
      • www.amplify-interactive.com/pbj
    • Other links:
      • http://www.delicious.com/Amplify.Interactive/pbj
      • http://www.sempdx.org/