Over the past couple of months I’ve been mentoring a young Estonian startup InSkilled (they help you collect, analyze and share stuff you’re learning online every day) and we just finished a quick chat about search engine optimization (SEO) basics. It’s something they haven’t paid any attention to so far but will get these three points below sorted quickly.
#1. Focus on your unique content
Unless you’re Wikipedia it’s a tough battle to try getting to top 10 search results on generic terms. So figure out the unique content your site has and focus on that.
As more content gets added to the site by more people these pages will become high quality destinations for anyone wanting to learn about certain topics. Targeting the right keywords and combining this with proper on-site linking, on-page SEO and linkbuilding I wouldn’t be surprised if they got decent results in 3-6 months.
Got my act together, woke up at 6 and caught a train of bikers in the regular morning ride that a local bike shop organizes. Perhaps some 35 people cruising at 30 km/h average and loads up on coffee, pastries and porridge afterwards in the old town. If you’re in Tallinn and cycle then you should join the ride.
If you’re in London then let me know of the Sunday morning rides you know about :)
Now, how can I watch Tour de France over the internets?
Last week I attended the final pitch event by Startup Wise Guys accelerator and one of the slides that Martin Birac, the CEO of Monolith Advertising had up on the wall made me sit up in a “Wait, what?!” moment.
Unknowing to the participants they had showed couple of ads on a TV screen before the pitching session and used their Monolith machine to measure how many people saw and watched the ads. Although I knew what their product does it was still an eye opener – I was being tracked and measured in a physical space, my reactions to an ad noted by a cold calculating robotic eye.
Monolith’s solution is a mixture of hardware and software (they initially hacked a Microsoft Kinect for this) that tracks your body and your eyes, measures eye contact with the ad space (in this case a TV screen). In the future it’ll be able to track your journey through a mall, telling the merchant if their ad near the mall entrance works in driving foot traffic to their shop.
Martin and Co have also tested a prototype of an augmented reality ad where the viewer was projected inside the ad, making it possible to manipulate the virtual space – sort of like a computer game.
They clearly have plenty of challenges with having a hardware component, breaking new ground, finding first big clients etc but it’s a solution I found really exciting. They’ll be pitching in London this week together with the Springboard companies, hope they nail it!
Every now and then I get asked what tools I use to keep tabs on social media. Since it’s part of my daily job at Flattr and I’ve been active blogging/tweeting/sharing pics etc for ages I’ve tried quite a few different tools and for now seem to have stuck with the ones listed below.
Something worth mentioning is that I work at a very small startup and manage all of our social channels and content creation myself so team-aspect of tools has not been high on my priorities.
TweetDeck is the real work horse I’m spending the most time replying to our customers, following discussions, getting useful links for material to be used in our own channels. There are weaknesses (no auto-translate of non-English tweets is my biggest gripe) but it’s invaluable for me.
Great read by Andrew Phelps on Gawker’s new man-machine Neetzan Zimmerman who’s superhero skill is finding the odd pieces from the depth of the internet that are bound to go viral. He churns out 13-14 posts a day, clocking up pageviews, leaving other Gawker editors to focus on longer, more meaty stories.
In short order I was able to track content from the point of inception to pre-mainstream saturation. I learned to recognize when items were reaching that critical stage of going from radar blip to full-scale red alert.
There has grown up in the minds of certain groups in this country the notion that because a man or corporation has made a profit out of the public for a number of years, the government and the courts are charged with the duty of guaranteeing such profit in the future, even in the face of changing circumstances and contrary to public interest. This strange doctrine is not supported by statute or common law. Neither individuals nor corporations have any right to come into court and ask that the clock of history be stopped, or turned back.
Sounds like something from a recent article regarding copyrights? Not quite. It’s actually a quote by Robert A. Heinlein from his first published work Life-Line from 1939. Timely as ever.
Really proud about the partnership announcement that went out today – Dailymotion, after all, is the world’s 29th largest website. And now they’re doing Flattr. Well, not for all yet, we’re starting with their MotionMakers aka prosumer video creators. In reality it means these are accounts who have been verified to carry original video content, stuff that isn’t pirated.
Next challenge: get all those high quality video makers (like @ithakaaudio above) on board so I can flattr them.
It’s one of these partnerships that just happened because someone at Dailymotion was fan of Flattr, championed it inside the company and two month ago time was ripe to sign some papers, do the technical integration and then prep for the launch. Reminds me how Skype started growing as a business tool not because Skype had a large sales team but because people in these companies started using the product and convinced IT managers to make it an official tool. Best validation for your business model.
That does not mean work can stop. Quite the opposite. There’s plenty we need to clean up on our site, keep iterating on how our product works, make sure we can keep growing as we get beyond the tech savvy early adopter audience. Focus on our strengths. Focus. Focus. Something we haven’t been too great at :)
Co-founder and CEO of SEOmoz, Rand Fishkin, is a darn entertaining speaker, with great insight into why and how startups should use what they have – time and energy – for their marketing efforts, and not try to outspend the big boys.
As a side note, his reaction at 50:45 just cracks me up :) Keep watching from that point onwards and let Rand convince you that from marketing point of view Google+ is not dead but actually one darn powerful tool that impacts your company results in search result pages.