BACK TO BASICS:
Dealing With Client Buy-In
|FEATURE: Choosing the Right Management Style for Corporate Clients
|When working to achieve buy-in across a large corporation, managers must overcome indifference that often exists between different operating silos. In most cases, the key to success will rest on your ability to define the stakeholders within the corporate environment. These are the people who will have an impact on the projects outcome. Once the stakeholders are defined, it is your job to craft a message to show the tangible benefits and meaningful opportunities that will be realized with their department’s involvement. Finally, you must carefully select your tactics. There are many battles in a project’s life and not all are planned for in the same fashion.|
BACK TO BASICS: Dealing With Client Buy-In
As a search engine optimization service provider, we see clients of all sizes and complexities. One and two-man operations are just as likely as large international corporations to begin a project with us, and each needs to be serviced with the same level of attention and concern. Every client is different; each has a unique structure and a unique way in which things get done. But across all these clients there is one very important component that never changes, the need to get buy in.
Deceitful or the Greatest Piece of Link Bait Ever?
On May 9, the reputable Money.co.uk Web site posted a story titled 13 Year Old Steals Dad's Credit Card to Buy Hookers. To date it's received more than 2,500 Diggs and was picked up by mainstream news outlets like FOX News, News.com.au, The Daily Telegraph, and many, many others (the stories have all been removed). It's received hundreds of links and thousands of visitors.
The problem is the story posted wasn't true. It was a hoax, or what we in the SEO community refers to as link bait. Lyndon Antcliff, the SEO responsible for the fake story, was so impressed with his ability to fool the mainstream media that he wrote about his accomplishment (the original post has since been removed) on this blog.
This was the first time that many people were made aware that the story in question was not true, and that it was simply the work of an SEO trying to game the search engines and get links for a client's Web site.
The SEO Community Responds
Lyndon's bragging caught the eye of the SEO community and the post was quickly the center of a very lively discussion on social networking site Sphinn. While some members applauded Lyndon for his efforts and social media success, others worried that Lyndon was setting a bad example for SEOs.
Ken Jones, specifically, questioned the ethics of what Lyndon did, while Jonathan Crossfield wrote an in depth piece looking at all sides of the situation. To add even more fuel to the fire, Google engineer Matt Cutts commented on the Sphinn thread that a fake news story falls under what Google calls "deceptive practices" and may warrant some type of penalty or filtering.
From there, Search Engine Land declared that if you're doing a fake news story, disclose or face the wrath of Google. Matt's comment combined with Search Engine Land's coverage had everyone talking about whether Google has a right to decide what is true or false on the Internet.
Bruce Clay's Lisa Barone chimed in and said that while she doesn't agree with link bait at any cost, she also doesn't agree that it is Google's job to play truth seeker. Prominent search marketers like Nick Wilsdon, Michael Gray, Jill Whalen, and Jonathan Crossfield expressed their own varying opinions.
Defining Link Bait.
Again Shortly after, Rae Hoffman issued her two cents in a post over at Search Engine Land titled Don't Call Me Link Bait. Rae warned the community about calling a con "link bait". In her opinion, what Lyndon did wasn't link bait. It was a fake news story that appeared on a reputable Web site. His client may have been rewarded in the short-term with links and attention, but the long-term effects could still be negative if they've now lost authority in the eyes of its readers.
The spectacle that erupted over the past few weeks was a good reminder that link bait can come with a cost. If you're not acting in an ethical way, all the links and traffic in the world won't help you win over a customer that has lost faith in you.
Yahoo Director Edward Kozel resigned, while Yahoo executive Ira Kurgan also left to join the Fox Broadcasting Company.
Chark aka Char joined Google's Search Quality Team and will help answer questions in the Google Webmasters Help Group.
In corporate launches, mergers and acquisitions: Google launched Google Health. Microsoft released Social Bookmarks to compete with Yahoo's Delicious, killed off its Live Search Books and Live Search Academic programs, and launched the Cashback program in an attempt to steal advertisers and consumers from Google.
Yahoo opened up its developer platform Search Monkey to everyone. AOL joined Open Social, the initiative hoping to standardize applications for social networking Web sites.
comScore paid $44.3 million for mobile research first M:Metrics. Search Engine Land launched a Spanish edition.
TechMeme integrated a search function into its tech news aggregator site. CondeNet bought Ars Technica.
In redesigns Reddit released a new site design, as did John Battelle's Searchblog.
Last week, Bruce Clay Australia attended the CeBit conference in Sydney to exhibit, while Jeremy Bolt was also on call to speak. You can read all about the event over at the Rambling Thoughts Blog.
Next week SMX Advanced hits Seattle on June 3-4. We'll have several team members in town and Bruce will be speaking on Tuesday's Creating Value In Your SEMJ Businesses panel with Sean J. McMahon from EngineWorks and Matt Naeger from Impaqt.
We'll also be sending Bruce Clay writers Lisa Barone and Virginia Nussey to provide full liveblogging coverage of the event. You can find their liveblogging schedule on the Bruce Clay, Inc. blog. Virginia will also be conducting interviews for Bruce Clay Inc.'s SEM Synergy radio show, so be on the lookout for that, as well.
After Seattle, SES Toronto will take place on June 16-18 (be sure to check out the SES Toronto party guide), the WidgetWebExpo lands in the Big Apple June 16-17, BlogHer hits San Francisco on July 18-20, and Jim Boykin will take the SEO Class to Edinburgh, Scotland on June 23-24.
Search Engine Strategies has announced additional SEO training opportunities throughout June and July.
Programming Note: The Bruce Clay, Inc. UK SEO Training class originally scheduled for November has been rescheduled to September 9-11. These are the confirmed dates, so if you're hoping to attend, make sure to reserve your seat today. Bruce Clay's SEO training in the States will take a break in June but will be back in full swing on July 14-18. Seats are going fast, so register early!
Google help webmasters take a more informed look at their search algorithm with their post Introduction to Google Search Quality.
With a little help from Google, Wikipedia grew its traffic 8,000 percent over the past five years.
The Great Place to Work Institute put Google at the top of their 50 best workplaces in the UK.
MySpace took a cue from Facebook and limited the amount of applications users can insert within their profiles.
Word on the Wire
John Furrier repeated speculation that Microsoft and Yahoo were bunkered down in a Palo Alto Hotel working out the final stages of a transaction. A little later in the month, BusinessWeek also jumped on the ongoing rumors between Yahoo and Google/Microsoft, writing that Yahoo was within days of making a deal with either Google or Microsoft.
Meanwhile, over at Marketing Pilgrim, Janet Meiners says that Microsoft was ready to forget Yahoo and would instead pay $15-$20 billion for Facebook.
Vanessa Fox wondered what cool stuff LinkedIn was launching when she came across a magical service message. After some serious forum chatter, Search Engine Roundtable asked: Is Microsoft & Siemens Teaming Up In Europe Against Google?