Search Love Conference 2011

By Paul Morris
One of my colleagues, Imran Khan, has just come back from the SEOmoz / Distilled Search Love conference. By all accounts it was a great 2 day event hence thought I’d take this opportunity to drain Imran of his knowledge (similar to, but less painful than, the Flash Gordon Dr Hans Zarkov moment) and cover the key learning’s:

Building Communities

Rand Fishkin made an interesting point about building communities. All the usual stuff e.g. find people, engage and reward them but an ‘obvious’ one I had not thought of before; that of creating a common enemy. Basically a common enemy bonds a community together and if you can find one then utilise it.

Useful SEO tools

About making your SEO life easier:

· Skitch – Easy/ free that helps you capture/ edit your screen captures/ images with shapes and comments.

· Smartsheet – Good project management, collaboration, and file sharing product.

· Screaming Frog – Find out what is wrong with your site via this desktop SEO program that crawls websites’ links, images, CSS, script and apps.

· Tamper Data – A Firefox Add-on to view and modify HTTP/HTTPS headers.

· STAT Codex – Limited but free that provides up to the minute analytics on top performing websites.

· Data Couch – Share and collaborate on open and public datasets.

· Server Density – Server monitoring.

· Evernote – Remember everything!

· Followerwonk – Find users by searching their Twitter bios, compare and measure Twitter relationships with others and visualise social graphs.

· Free Digital Photos – Download free images for use in corporate and personal projects.

Graphical Link Bait

To optimise graphical link bait here are some good tips:

· If you’re planning an Infographic, then start your research by analysing your competitors and Infographic links profile.

· For Infographic design inspiration, search similar images within Google image results.

· Governments, charities and other large bodies commission huge research reports. Use the data for your own client infographics.

· Pitch your infographic ideas to potential publisher hosts before creating them. You will quickly find out if you are on to a winner, have any willing participants and the idea/ design feedback will be invaluable.

· Give away free images, videos, presentations, graphs and charts for link acquisition.

· Create old skool widgets to generate inbound links. They have to be AMAZING though to gain any traction in today’s market.

It’s all about SoLoMo

The future of SEO is all about SOcial, LOcal and MObile apparently. Now I do not completely believe this statement hence read my more balanced viewpoint at my SOLOMO portmanteau post.

An additional point of note in the Social Media camp is that whilst everyone talks of Social Media being the future of the SERP algorithm (me included) that is not the case at present and you definitely need to continue with traditional link building activity to achieve top positions.

Some of the best social media tracking tools mentioned:

· Attensity

· cotweet

· Radian6

· Simply Measured

· trackur

2 great link bait examples

·         Take This Lollypop and The Museum of Me (engage to find out more!)

·         and collaborate on open and public datasets.