Epic Content Marketing Book Review

If you produce content (and want to do a better job of planning, creating and tracking it), get your hands on Epic Content Marketing, a new book by Joe Pulizzi who founded Content Marketing Institute.

Get your copy:
Epic Content Marketing: How to Tell a Different Story, Break through the Clutter, and Win More Customers by Marketing Less

Joe packs an incredible amount of knowledge in over 300 pages. He doesn't settle for generalizations or waste any space. Page after page is loaded with practical tips and great insights. He supplements his own wisdom with many examples of how companies are succeeding with content marketing (including Procter & Gamble and Kraft Foods).

I especially like how Joe sets the bar high - very high. He challenges marketers to be the leading authorities in their industries or niches. People should feel like they're really missing out if they're not keeping up with what you produce.… Read more

Designers Still Fail Web Site Clients with SEO

I can't believe how many small businesses I'm meeting that have horrible web sites that the miss the mark on so many levels.

I'll primarily focus here on SEO, which seems to be the missing ingredient in web site planning. Sure, the web sites sometimes have page titles populated with keywords. Big deal. Where is the keyword strategy? Where is the content area for text that will contain those essential keywords?

One web site looks absolutely wonderful. Great design instincts. Bad execution. After a few seconds, the visitor won't know if the company is selling bed sheets, pillows or home decorations. And the site has one of those "neat" extended home pages. Do they work for everyone? Is it really fun to scroll and scroll and scroll?

Yes, someone included keywords in the page titles. The problem is that the page titles all include the three main products the company sells.… Read more

Marketers: Don’t Blow Off the SEO Content Map

seo content road map for marketersI hear crickets every time I talk to prospects and marketers about an SEO content map.

I'm not sure why it seems like such a foreign topic to many people.

If you are going to invest time and risk money on SEO, wouldn't you want to face the facts and see what's going on with your content?

An SEO content map isn't just a list of your pages. Hopefully you already have that in hand.

Add different sets of data to broaden your perspective while sizing up the condition of your content.

You should include the following in an Excel document:

  • Existing page title (near the meta data)
  • Meta description
  • Header (like what's in the H1)
  • Nature of the content - who you're targeting
  • Amount of content (number of words)
  • A possible target keyword phrase
  • Whether the main images have alt tags and are named with reasonable words with dashes
  • Other notes

It not too much of a time burden for a small site.… Read more

The Strange World of SEO Page Titles

how to use SEO page titles for online marketingLife is a little strange for search engine optimization (SEO) professionals when it comes to SEO page titles.

Time and time again, I meet with potential clients who get confused about SEO titles and page headers.

People love to call post and page headers "titles" and I can't blame them. But then I call SEO titles by their name - "titles." We always sort that out from the start.

Here are 3 other tangled issues you will face once you get past the language issue.

1. Page titles with navigational words often aren't effective.

Sure, they can contact keywords, but they are not optimized with the right keyword phrase or phrases that your page can rank for on search engines.

2. Overloading SEO page titles with keyword doesn't work.

It's widely known that you can cram in 70 characters (including spaces) in an SEO title. But should you? Not always.

Go with your main keyword or keywords and occasionally add more and see if testing proves it's worth having the extra words.… Read more

SEO Tools, Keywords and “Ugly Baby” Web Sites – My Content Marketing 360 Interview

cm-360I recently had the privilege of being interviewed about SEO for the Content Marketing 360 Radio Show, a production of Next Stage Media Group.

Chatting with Host Pamela Muldoon, I covered many aspects of SEO - from content and keyword development to thought leadership for content marketing and web site design.

Web site design is one of my favorite topics. It's so easy for business executives to plow ahead with their web projects without any regard for SEO.

Today I met with an owner launching a web site for a new service (I get to be involved with the project even as the web site structure is being planned). Tomorrow I meet with a company that's blessed with several sites. As they decide how to make the most of them, they've turned to me for SEO guidance.

Here's an excerpt from Content Marketing 360 radio Show Interview:

Mike: So we talked a lot about keyword research, but getting your house in order.… Read more