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In this issue:

FEATURE:
The 7 Deadly Sins of Social Media

BACK TO BASICS:
What You Can Learn By Looking at Your
Competitors’ Source Code

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

FEATURE: The 7 Deadly Sins of Social Media
As the buzz around social media continues to get louder, companies are becoming more desperate to cash in. They’re stumbling blindly into blogging, microblogging, building new platforms and creating profiles on every social media site they can point their mouse at. The mission is to quickly scoop up backlinks, to attract new eyeballs and to collect instant search engine rankings. However, when companies launch into social media unprepared the only thing they really earn themselves is a bad reputation as a social media spammer.

The mistakes made by companies in social media shouldn’t be taken lightly. The way you present yourself in the new social Web will affect your company’s overall reputation and your ability to connect with users and potential customers in the future. So what are the most common mistakes companies make when they try to jump in at the deep end of the pool?


BACK TO BASICS: What You Can Learn by Looking at Your Competitors’ Source Code

Though your Web site may not rank at the top of the search engine results yet, someone’s does. The search engines find those top-ranking Web pages to be the most relevant for your keywords, so those sites are, in turn, your online competitors. As with any type of competition, it helps to know who you’re up against. This article lays out a list of things you can do to size up an opponent by reviewing their site and source code.


Hot Topics
Rumors of an Open Source Google Browser Emerge

On September 1, while those of us in the States were celebrating Labor Day, Philipp Lenssen broke the news about a rumored open source browser from Google. The browser was said to be named "Chrome" and was leaked when Google sent out its informational Chrome comic book earlier than anticipated. Some botched planning meant the cat was officially out of the bag.

Despite it being a holiday, word spread like a wildfire throughout the blogosphere. Eric Lander was among the first to react, diving into Philipp's post at Search Engine Journal and questioning if the browser was real. Meanwhile, TechCrunch was busy posting some of our first glimpses of the new browser, while the rest of the Internet continued to wait for Google Chrome to launch and wondered if it was all just a rumor.

It's Official: Meet Chrome

Just hours after Philipp's original blog post, the search marketing industry received their answer: Chrome was real and, more importantly, it was on its way.

Monday afternoon Google updated the Official Google Blog and introduced us to Chrome, their fresh take on the browser that would launch on Sept. 2. Googler Matt Cutts liveblogged Chrome's big reveal the following day. We learned that Google was built on WebKit and that it hailed impressive new features like dynamic tabs, an incognito mode, and an Omnibox that combined a browser's address bar and search box. Google stated they believed that Chrome would add value for users and help drive innovation in the browser race.

According to Google, Chrome was birthed to make Web browsing more productive, secure, faster and more stable. Search Engine Land took a deeper look at what Chrome has to offer in 10 Key Features That Differentiate Google's Chrome From Firefox & IE.

Can Chrome Compete?

Not surprisingly, there were lots of questions and expectations for Chrome right out of the gate. GigaOm called it "nice, but not a 'killer' browser", Search Engine Land asked how bright is the outlook for Chrome, the folks at DigitalPoint asked if Chrome could kill IE, and Search Engine Roundtable asked Can Google Win The Browser Wars with Google Chrome?

From there, Walt Mossberg wrote an in-depth Chrome review over at AllThingsD and CNET was there to pick apart Chrome's terms of service.

At Search Engine Journal, Ann Smarty encouraged search marketers to learn how to optimize for Google Chrome, taking a look at the SEO impacts of Chrome's tab system, how it handles error pages, and how Google Suggest will alter how users search. Bruce Clay Analyst Michael Terry added his thoughts during last week's SEM Synergy show, talking about the uniqueness of Chrome's task manager, its speed, and how it can also be used as a basic keyword density tool.

Early reviews have found that Chrome does a lot of things right but that it won't be a true competitor until it is able to give users some of the creature comforts they've grown accustomed to - like support for FireFox plug-ins. It may be too early to know what impact Chrome will inevitably have on users' browsing habits, but one thing's for sure, we're all watching.

Programming Note: The SEO Newsletter continues its monthly publishing schedule and will be published on or near the 15th of each month. Adopting the monthly publishing date allows us to maintain the integrity and authority of the newsletter, while accommodating heavier travel schedules and increasing internal demands. You'll still receive the same great SEO news and educational articles, just in a thicker, more comprehensive format.


Shuffles

During the past month the industry has seen Joanne Bradford leave Spot Runner for Yahoo, Pat Sexton join the team at We Build Pages, Lisa Utzschneider leave Microsoft, and Yahoos Steve Boom and Todd Teresi both resign.

In mergers, acquisitions and launches:

  • Google released a new Picasa interface, bought Korean blog company TNC, teamed with NBC for a TV advertising deal, launched a new 404 widget to help site owners create custom 404 pages, opened up Ad Manager and sent Google Suggest mainstream.
  • Yahoo updated the linkage data reports in Yahoo Site Explorer and opened up Yahoo Buzz to the general public.
  • Microsoft released Internet Explorer 8 Beta 2, improved its Live Search Local Listings Center, and acquired the market research firm Greenfield.
  • Ask.com released AskKids.
  • iProspect purchased search engine marketing firm Range Online Media.
  • Industry print magazine Search Marketing Standard was acquired by iNET Interactive.
  • TechCrunch redesigned its site.

Sound Bytes

If you like what you read in the SEO Newsletter, there's more Internet marketing expertise where that came from. Check out SEM Synergy every Wednesday at 3:00 pm Eastern and Noon Pacific on WebmasterRadio.fm. Bruce Clay and the other hosts discuss industry news, SEO tactics and marketing trends, while expert guests share their insights on methods, best practices and upcoming events. Check out the show schedule below for a look at recent shows and upcoming topics.

September 3
(Listen now)

News

Dave Synder

Reputation Management

September 10
(Coming Soon!)

Google Chrome

Vanessa Fox

Webmaster Guidelines

September 17

Kevin Ryan

Strategy vs Tactics

Net Neutrality

September 24

News

Martin Bowling

Social Media Sins

Got something to say? Contact the SEM Synergy team and share your thoughts, comments and questions. You might even hear your question answered on the show.


Shindigs

It's time to get your pirate accents in order because this Friday, September 19, is Talk Like a Pirate Day. Once we're done walkin' the plank, BlogWorldExpo will land in the Las Vegas Convention Center on September 19-21 and The PPC Summit will be held in Los Angeles on September 25-26.

The folks behind FreshEgg will be offering an SEO Workshop in Brighton, UK on October 3. Shortly after will be SMX East in New York City on October 6-8, which boasts an impressive list of keyword speakers.

If you're going to SMX East, be sure to stick around for SEOToolSet training on the East Coast happening on October 9-10. Registration is open for both SMX and Bruce Clay's East Coast SMX training on the SMX Web site. Use the code smx20bci for a 20 percent discount on both SMX passes and SEO Training.

Later in the month, ScarySEO will take over Florida on October 24-25. If you're attending ScarySEO, make sure to track down Bruce Clay's Director of Eastern Region Operations, Chris Hart, who will be speaking on the SEO Project Management and Educating Clients panel with John Carcutt and Pamela Lund.

Programming Note: Dates for 2009 UK SEO Training are still being worked out. Keep your eyes on the Bruce Clay, Inc. blog and SEO Newsletter for details.


Attaboys

Google continues giving back to the community with its investment in O3b Network and recent launch of lobby Web site FreeTheAirwaves. Both ventures aim to help bring high-speed, low cost Internet to those in remote areas.

Google was voted the most satisfying company in America, while Google Maps received credit for helping Olympic Gold Medalist Kristin Armstrong train and eventually win her 15 mile cycling race in Beijing.

Twitter received props from ReadWriteWeb (and the rest of the Internet) for significantly increasing their reliability. No more fail whale here.

Happy Birthday to Google! The search engine celebrated its 10th birthday this month.


Word on the Wire

The Wall Street Journal hinted that Verizon and Google may be close to signing a new mobile deal, while over at Search Engine Land Barry Schwartz sees that Google may be looking to add blog results instead of Google Sitelinks.

Meanwhile, over at SEO Book, Aaron Wall wonders who will buy Ask.com and Jeremy Schoemaker says Best of the Web is in talks to buy DMOZ.



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.

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