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In this issue:

FEATURE:
Driving Web Site Traffic With Collarity

BACK TO BASICS:
The Beginner's Guide to Social Media Optimization

THE USUAL: Coverage of this month's
hot topics, shuffles, shindigs, attaboys and word on the wire.

 
FEATURE: Driving Web Site Traffic With Collarity

Last newsletter we discussed the impact of personalization on SEO, touching on some of the challenges that the search engines' personalized search programs will present to search engine marketers. This time around we'll introduce you to a tool that allows for personalization and optimization to work hand-in-hand, increasing usability and supporting your search marketing goals. At the beginning of February, we implemented Collarity onto BruceClay.com in order to help our users find related information more quickly.


BACK TO BASICS: The Beginner's Guide to Social Media Optimization

There's a great sense of relief when you finally admit to yourself that though it sounds cool, you have no idea what it means to Digg, Stumble or Spurl. That you spell delicious without random periods and that, in your world, Reddit is two words and not at all spelled like that. As an average Web user, you don't have to be a fan of social media optimization. However, as a site owner, you do need to know that it exists and be aware of the effects and potential benefits it could have on your site.



Hot Topics

Search Engine Strategies' London Invasion

February ended with a dose of international flair as Search Engine Strategies descended upon London. Many of the industry's heavy hitters made the journey across the pond to talk about search and partake in a whole lot of conference fun.

Be it Search Engine Strategies, Ad:Tech or one of the other search engine optimization-focused conference series, international shows are known for being smaller than the conferences that take place here in the States. The more intimate arena provides attendees with a unique opportunity to get up close and personal with their favorite search marketers and take advantage of the close-knit educational setting.

SES London offered attendees a detailed look at the European search space with sessions specifically geared toward international companies and interests.

Conferences highlights and themes included:

  • Matt Cutts Keynote: Matt's keynote speech was one of the biggest reasons for many search marketers to make the journey to London. Officially, Matt is Google's resident spam guy, spending his days in email and spotting spam trends. Unofficially, Matt and his blog are the search world's go-to place for debunked Google rumors and invaluable search engine optimization tips. Matt sat down with moderator Chris Sherman to talk about topics like personalized search, his favorite Google product, the rumors that Matt's working with the CIA, and where he thinks Google is going in the next three to five years. If you weren't able to make it to London, SEO Tutorial posted a 5-part video of Matt's keynote speech that may be of interest.
  • Social Search: SES London debuted a series of new sessions within London's Vertical Search Issues track designed to help attendees take advantage of new search avenues. Featured sessions included News Search SEO, Blog & Feed Search SEO, Video & Podcast SEO and a detailed Social Search Overview. Over the past year we've seen these social search tactics become increasingly more important in our clients' search engine optimization campaigns and SES London put them on center stage at this year's conference.
  • Thinking Outside the Box: The panelists did a stellar job encouraging attendees to think outside the box and take a pro-active stance on managing their search marketing and optimization campaigns. Beyond Ink's Alex Bennert stressed the importance of looking at your site from all angles and studying its "curb appeal" during the Converting Visitors Into Buyers session, while other panelists gave tips on using analytics data to stay on top of your competition in addressing customer needs. With the search engine optimization field becoming more crowded and increasingly more competitive, the only way to stand out is to be different.
  • A Stronger European Focus: Not surprisingly, a European focus was heavily applied to almost all of the sessions during SES London. A special Targeting Europe Track on Day 1 made sure that European marketers were able to see examples of successfully deployed search marketing campaigns throughout Europe and the United Kingdom. Examples of such targeted sessions included Multi-Country Campaign Management and European Shopping Search: Opportunities & Tactics. The European Search Marketing Case Studies session took real-life examples from Chevrolet's UK-based search marketing campaign, SM Brussels airline's pay-per-click campaign, the online marketing campaign used by HMV, and others.

If you're looking through more recaps, we invite you to go through our Search Engine Strategies London archives with commentary and session recaps provided by Bruce Clay UK's Marie Howell.


Shuffles

This month Did-It's CEO of Search Bill Wise, Yahoo Korea CEO Sung Nak-Yang, AOL's Chief Financial Officer Steve Swad, and AOL UK's CMO Tobin Ireland all announced they would be leaving their respective roles for new ventures.

In recent hires, Jupiter Research's Michael Gartenberg joined Microsoft as their new Enthusiast Evangelist and Bloglines creator Mark Fletcher resurfaced At Startupping.

In mergers, acquisitions and redesigns:

  • Microsoft and Baidu partnered in China.
  • News Corp's Fox Interactive Media acquired Strategic Data Corp.
  • Search Engine Roundtable launched a site redesign.
  • As predicted, Google launched its subscription-based Google Apps Premier service, giving Microsoft some competition in the office suite arena.
  • SplashPress Media acquired Performancing.
  • Kim Krause-Berg's Cre8asite Forums opened a new Social Media and Tagging forum.
  • WebmasterWorld launched a new social media optimization forum called Social Media Tagging & Bookmarking Optimization.

Shindigs

This month all eyes were on London as the big Search Engine Strategies conference was underway. If you attended the conference, we hope you were able to track down Bruce Clay UK's Marie Howell who was acting as our roving reporter.

If you missed it, fear not. There are a lot of great upcoming opportunities for search marketing education on the horizon. You're going to want to clear your calendars for these top notch events:

  • The Search Summit takes place in Sydney 1 March - 2 March.
  • Oregon's SEMpdx begins March 7th.
  • Jill Whalen and her SEO Seminar will arrive in Minneapolis on March 15th and 16th.
  • Elite Retreat will offer up their second installment in San Francisco March 19-20th in San Francisco.
  • Danny Sullivan and Search Marketing World 2007 hits Dublin on March 21.
  • The SEO Academy hits Toronto March 26-30.
  • Bruce Clay's SEOToolSet Training will be held March 19-21 with the Advanced Course on the 22nd.

Looking ahead to April, Search Engine Strategies NY will be held April 10-13, and Ad:Tech San Francisco will take place April 23-27. Bruce will be speaking at both shows, so if you're in town make sure to stop by the booth and say hello to the gang.

Also, keep in mind that registration is open for Danny Sullivan's new show Search Marketing Expo, which takes place June 4-5 in Seattle. We'll be offering up a free pass to the event within the next few months, so keep your eyes on the Bruce Clay, Inc. blog for more details.


Attaboys

Jerry Yang donated $75 million to his alma mater Stanford University to go towards a new environmental studies center, while Microsoft announced they will donate $1.7 million to help victims of Hurricane Katrina.

Andy Beal will continue his Search Engine Marketing Scholarship contest beginning at the end of March to help give up-and-coming search marketers some industry exposure. Applicants will write essays relating to search marketing for a judges panel that includes industry experts like Kim Krause-Berg, Neil Patel, Todd Malicoat, Lee Odden and others.

In number-related attaboys, the number of users visiting search engines has surpassed the number of users frequenting adult sites in the United Kingdom, according to Hitwise; ResearchBuzz celebrated its 400th issue; and whether you love it or hate it, Wikipedia entered comScore's Top Ten Most Visited Sites list.


Word on the Wire

There were a wide array of acquisition rumors this month with Jupitermedia supposedly on the verge of being acquired by Getty, the false-rumor that Microsoft had bought up TellMe, speculation that Google's YouTube/CBS deal was on the outs, lots of buzz that the Insider Pages were about to be acquired, but by who?

After a strong push in the States, it looks like Google Checkout may be on its way to Australia, Google Docs and Spreadsheet is scheduled to be integrated into Google Apps within a few weeks, and the Wiki Search Engine is said to be launching by the end of 2007.

Then, at the end of the month, we all tried to figure out what Google Rebang is. The jury's still out on that one.



If you have any questions or comments on any of the articles above or if you would like to suggest topics for future search engine optimization articles, please contact us at Bruce Clay, Inc