What started out as a research project on a competitor, erupted into a full blown epiphany on the fusion of viral marketing, article marketing, SEO, blogging and social media (complete with instructions after I finish a pending e-book about the topic). However, during the interim we can at least plant a few seeds to imply where this is going.
The Beginning of a New Era in Search and Marketing is upon us, and for those savvy enough to catch on, sky is the limit.
For example, blogs and blog rolls have become the new directories and provide a solid foundations for link diversity. Tools like SEO Digger makes easy to snatch the keywords from your competition without even flinching (who needs superman’s x-ray vision when you have this), keyword research tools and analytics software allows you to know, what to post, when to post and with some ingenuity where to post, all made my question the whole approach about old school SEO and the emerging new technologies that are now commonplace.
When it comes to SEO who chooses who? The SEO optimizing a website has just as much influence as the person searching for the content. Although it may be cloaked in chronology as the SEO optimizer set out months in advance targeting related phrases and semantic parallels deliberately, so when the curious surfer inputs the proper combination “tah-dah” guess who’s page is right there. So you see, SEO really boils down to a great game of chess between SEO, Bloggers and say a few million other players caught in the middle at any given time.
Who is in control? The searcher, or the searched?
In accordance to this hypothesis that, the rules have changed, you can see how with a keen mind, thoughtful planning, a few hours of research and a few ingenious SEO tools, you essentially can de-construct someones marketing campaign that took months to implement and play the one up game and take or move beyond their spot.
Unless you have unfathomable pockets, there are going to be some holes in your game from time to time. This is where the competition comes in, they love it when you get lazy at the top. With so many variables and criteria to manage, the assumption is, once you hit the top 10 you feel good, when you hit the top 5 you feel great, but once you are in the number one spot, you may as well just paint a bulls eye around your neck, because “tag your it ” and everybody and their dog are coming after you like you owe them lunch money.
So, what can you do to brush up, polish some new skills and stay on top, take a campaign viral to supplement your popularity. Forget about the fear of duplicate content, if that were the case, then PR wire would be burying every website they put a story out on, or in essence burying themselves as a result of duplicate content. So, since we know that is not the case, if your first, then every one else who is mentioning your site, making a reference to your articles, reading your posts or in some way acting on some motion that you put in play has to worry about that instead of your site.
Scrapers for example, always trying to posture as if they wrote your content and butchering your best work into jiberish, all for the sake of that almighty ranking. Did it ever occur to them that they are building your brand. Unless the site with the content can eclipse your own, as long as the content was indexed first on your server, then let the other ants fight over who gets a sugar cube from republishing your work.
The true distinction here is, the word ADMIN vs. user. As an administrator, you control the content and essentially you can replicate your self or your link building far beyond having a full time staff with a clever idea and some incite where to post it. I heard other leading industry experts talking about it this topic, why rent when essentially you can own. Say for example you have a nice nest egg of 20-50 blogs that are all independent what is to stop you from sending a few high powered links from them to say a term you wanted to rank for from website X, for example.
Now this is where the lines get blurred, if you know that the search engines want quality content and you just so happen to know how to write it, and you just so happen to have invested in search engine real estate (high powered blogs you built up or acquired through domaining) then essentially it’s a gray area, because your not buying or selling links, your just tactfully exercising your right to express yourself on one level just to add the base, then say for example you were to use link bait to sprinkle a few thousand more links to add popularity (because the content was that good). You are talking about an all out ranking arsenal waiting to pimp smack anyone who dares to target your keywords. Well, if you think it’s just a theory, many of the top dogs are employing this tactic and that is only scratching the surface.
I almost feel sorry for the person who is out there submitting their sites to search engines and waiting on that magical lottery ticket / directory to pass link juice to give them a boost over the top. It’s almost like waiting on the tooth fairy only to see it’s your parents and catching them in the act. It sort of takes the fun out of it, but they always said the truth hurts.
So, with ingenuity and automation (just for the record I am not condoning nor implying anything black hat here), more along the lines of an article submitter or ping-o-matic, socializer, and things along these lines, one could essentially dominate an industry with strategic introductions of content using multiple layers of strategy.
The old hit em high and hit em low technique makes it’s debut under this type of marketing. such as:
a) create page with juicy link bait and put it in a safe location on your site.
b) post article 1 of 10 for the series in areas known for harboring social piranha, known to devour content compulsively (they just can’t help but publish the RSS feeds, because to them it’s helping their sites gain momentum).
Sit back, wait for ingestion and see your links start to pour in. This is just part 1 of 6 for example. This is what I mean by the rules have changed.
I regret to say that I will have to keep the other steps under wraps for now, until I can figure a way to put this all together in a clear cohesive system rather than a tattered post. In any case, imagine the power of using all of the unique social media sites for what they were designed for, to share ideas and content. But utilize them in a way that only an SEO can, with layered duplicity and simplicity at the same time.
I can’t resist throwing in a small conclusion to this one ranking formula. So now that you have launched article one of 10 with the anchor text of one of your most competitive keywords (now launch the other 9 and really dominate a niche), you see how through orchestrating your content, you can systematically climb the ranks through time released distribution that you know others will devour, link to, stumble and share, etc.
c) As a result, wait for Google Bot to go into Highlander mode (there can be only one) and weed out the imposter’s, rough them up with a tiny penalty and take a little payment of their link juice and after a week or so, your content, site and keywords get the lift (and a touch of authority) from being naturally “first indexed”. If you don’t think outside the box, what can you expect. Having other’s build links in a natural fashion vs. begging, borrowing, email for links, etc. (old school). The new way is far more simple and to the point. You want links, write great content, you want even more links, write great content with a hook and use it as bait. It’s that simple.
This is nothing new, but bloggers have one way to promote, SEO’s have another approach, but now a rather unique fusion is occurring that is blurring the lines of internet marketing into something quite distinct, which I simply have to coin as “Viral SEO”, the marriage of web 2.0, social media, link baiting, strategic content creation and the ability for others to clone and replicate it and give credit back to the source (now that’s a mouthful).
Once you get the hang of the mapping the keywords with the highest response, gleaning the horizon for individuality or holes to determine where your unique selling proposition comes into play. It’s almost like having a road map, you can steadily implement to create your own islands of link popularity, which in turn create more popularity and authority, etc.
The bottom line is, everything leaves a trail, and if your smart enough to catch the scent, you can follow it back to the source and stumble upon breakthrough after breakthrough from the secrets of how to optimize your site’s architecture for competitive keywords, finding the right way to build links, development content, etc. Then you can see the implications of what can happen when Viral SEO meets web 2.0. Let’s just say that those who can truly embrace the new and exciting platforms available, for them the top of the food chain, just got smaller.