Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Jay Berkowitz selected for Keynote Marketing Presentation at Annual Conference for Advertising Professionals

The AAF-4th District selected Jay Berkowitz, as their keynote presenter for the regional conference on May 2-4th in St. Petersburg, Florida. His presentation “Ten Reasons Why Traditional Ad Agencies Suck At Interactive Marketing…And What They Can Do About It,” features internet marketing ideas for advertising agencies and professionals.

Jay will offer these Internet Marketing Ideas That Will Help Agencies Not Suck:
* How ad agencies can build and develop websites that show up in Google searches
* What is Web 2.0? What are the opportunities for business?
* Search Engine Optimization Reviews
* What online business models are working, and not working today
* How to use new technologies for internet marketing such as podcasts and video
* What is UGC? Twitter? GUS? Oovoo?
* How ad agencies and their clients can use Social Media websites like Facebook, MySpace and Twitter

Ever Wonder What Link Bait Looks Like?

We continue to discuss link bait and how you can utilize this tactic in gaining popularity with your website. Well, we have added another form of Link Bait and can show you a true picture of what we mean. Please meet our latest addition, Link Bait

Friday, April 25, 2008

Blog Design and How It Is Important

Because I’m a blogger, and I also have an eye in web design, I find it important to have a clean looking blog design just as much as having interesting, unique content. There is also the argument that with many people reading blog posts through RSS feed readers, most of us don’t see what the blog looks like, so why would it be important?

First impressions are important, and a clean, easy to navigate blog design is a deciding factor on if they will subscribe to your blog or not.

Personally, I like blogs that have blog posts on the right side, with a side navigation or side bar on the left. This is because most people read from left to right, left being the important thing on your blog, which is content, followed by your sidebar. I think of the sidebar as the area where the reader goes next after they think the blog post is interesting, exploring the rest of your site.

If possible, you should always format your blog posts in a way that the reader will have to go to your actual blog if they are reading it in an RSS reader. That way they can see your design and possibly go to more posts, being that they are already on the website.

Remember, keeping it simple usually always works.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

221 Million Users

China surpassed the United States becoming the world’s largest Internet using population according to the state media with 221 million Internet users. The China Internet Network Information Centre claims last year China had 210 million users, five million less than the U.S.

With the Olympics being held in China this summer, the Internet has become one way of supporters to get their message out about the upcoming games.

Google News Making Quotes Easily Accessible

Last week Google News announced a new feature making quotations from Google News articles easy to search. Now, if you search for a persons name and Google News has a recent quote from them, it will show up above the search results. For example, if you type in George Bush on Google News, you will see a quote above the search results from the President generated 17 hours ago. There is then a link below this quote taking you to more of the President’s recent quotes.

This is a great new feature, and makes it much easier to keep track and find quotes online. For more information, check out Google News Official Blog.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Google Me

Everyone has googled themselves on multiple occasions, but why did no one every think to create a documentary about what happened when you found out that you were not the only person in the world with your name (and more importantly, how lonely would you feel if when you googled your name, you were the only result?) . Well, Jim Killeen googled himself and with a film crew went around to the other Jim Killeen's of the world and interviewed them. The movie debuts on Youtube on Friday, so stay tuned for a review.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Every Page Is Your Homepage

I was so happy today when I saw this blog post from Mitch Joel, over at the Six Pixels of Separation blog. Long have I lobbied for Internet marketers to stay focused on the every day user – not the tech-savvy advanced users our industry comprises.

Yes, this is a simple idea - ANY page of your website can be the homepage because it is the entry point for a particular visitor. But, this fact is often lost on web professionals and website owners. So much attention is placed on the homepage, and interior pages get little regard.

But we need to realize that first and foremost, we must consider the every day user. They are, after all, our potential market - our audience. Although many millions use the Internet daily, most except the very immersed use it only casually – for whatever they've found it useful – and that's as far as they take it. It's a tool – a means to an end.

So, when they do a search and find a webpage, it IS the homepage to them. Is your website architected with this in mind?

Completing the Sale

In the world of ecommerce, it’s important for online stores to remember their purpose…to sell.

Many of today’s ecommerce websites are filled with interactive flash applications and complicated site structures that are filled with content that is skimmed over. Even though the content on a site will most likely not be read in its entirety, content should not be overlooked because it is vital factor for Search Engine Optimization.

If you browse many small businesses on the internet that sell something you will come across attractive images, logos, and content, but where is the hard sell? Definitely one of the most important, and forgotten, aspect of an ecommerce site is the sell, the content that tells the consumer exactly what to do. Most consumers are busy, they don’t have the time or patience to scour a site, it is up to you, the seller, to make all the information they need to buy your product accessible and easy to use. It doesn’t take much either:

For example: “Click the link below to view available pieces and prices, order some products, and have them shipped to you quickly.”

These are tried and true methods of advertising. Attract the customer, ask for the sale, and then make the transaction easy, predictable, and accessible. Do it! The results will speak for themselves.

Moving or Redesigning Your Website for SEO

Many people don’t realize that when they want to move their website to a new domain or do a redesign, it can possibly hurt your site performance in the search engines. There are ways to do this without hurting your rankings.

301 redirects are very helpful, especially if you are moving from an old domain to a new domain. A 301 redirect is a search engine friendly way to redirect your webpages to another website or webpage. The code 301 is interpreted as “moved permanently” and tells the search engines that the old website or webpage has moved to a new domain or new webpage.

If your website is listed in directories or linked to other websites, it is ideal to contact the webmaster of each site that links to yours to update the links. If this isn’t possible, another option is make sure the 301 redirect is in place so when someone clicks on your old link it will redirect to the new one.

Make sure you create a Sitemap of your website. This is helpful in making sure the spiders crawl your entire site. Make sure that the Sitemap is submitted to Google and Yahoo, so their spiders know that it is available to be crawled.

It’s also helpful to create a custom 404 page, which lists a link back to your website’s homepage as well as any other useful links or a search bar. That way, if a user happens to land on a non existent page on your site, they can search for what they’re looking for or just go back to the homepage.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

$1 million dollars in Click Fraud, Surely You Jest

They are serious and don't call me Shirley. In a lawsuit filed earlier this month in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York,, an online collectibles ecommerce site, claims that between 2002 and 2006 it received over $936,000 in fraudulent clicks. claims that Overture, which was bought by Yahoo in 2003 knew about the click fraud, who was perpetrating the click fraud, which advertisers were affected by the click fraud, Yahoo/Overture could have stopped the click fraud, reversed the charges and still did nothing about it. Why the company waited until 2008 to file the lawsuit makes no sense to me. As the person who manages our Pay Per Click Search team here at Ten Golden Rules, I am asked on almost a weekly basis about suspected click fraud for our clients, yet Bigreds waited 2 years after the click fraud ended and 6 years since it started. Apparently up until now, the online collectibles industry was booming or maybe Bigreds needed the money for a site redesign.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Web Search Classification Study

In the ever-changing world of the internet, there is no more vital information to a company than how to reach their target customers. Market research has led to new discoveries that will play a very important role in how companies market their website.

A research study at Penn State set out to classify queries made on search engines. The three categories in which all queries were divided were informational (searching for facts or topics), navigational (locating specific websites), and transactional (information related to buying a product/service). The study found quite conclusively (74% accuracy) that 80 percent of search engine queries are informational, with the remaining 20 percent divided between navigational and transactional.

The implications of this data are immense and will, no doubt, play an integral role in companies marketing strategies in the future. Classifying how search engines are used will help companies effectively and efficiently reach their target audiences.

If you are interested in learning more about this research study, the paper is available online.

RSS Explained: Why You Should Use It

Those who are bloggers or familiar with blogging are most likely familiar with RSS feeds. But there are still many people who aren’t.

RSS is known as Really Simple Syndication and is a web feed format that is used to publish updated content, such as blog entries, podcasts or news articles. Basically explained, it is a way to read constantly changing content as it is made available.

RSS content is usually read using software called an RSS reader. The orange symbol on the left is used to identify an RSS feed, and when you see that, you know that you can subscribe to their content. You can save the RSS feed to your RSS reader, and every time a website is updated, you will see it in your RSS reader as soon as it is published. Web based RSS readers include Google Reader and Bloglines and they are useful because you can read your subscribed feeds in any browser, no matter what computer you are on.

If you’re a blogger, it is in your best interest to have an RSS feed placed a prominent area where users can easily find it. In most blog software such as Blogger and Wordpress, an RSS feed is already installed. If you want to measure how many readers subscribe to your feed, Feedburner is a recommended tool for traffic analysis, ways to promote your feed and a lot more features. It is free and easy to use.

So whenever you see that orange square, you know that you can subscribe to an RSS feed. If you haven’t already, you can subscribe to Ten Golden Rules’ Blog RSS feed and be up to date on all our blog posts. :)

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

A Great Idea! Fresh eMail Every Time!

In reading Rohit Bhargava's Influential Marketing Blog, I came across what may not qualify as the best new invention of 2008, but maybe it should. MintEmail provides a "temporary" email address for internet users.

Why would I need a temporary email address - essentially "disposable email"? Think of it this way. Next time you need to fill out a form on a website - and you need to be able to access a confirmation email, but you don't want to give out your REAL email address - you can simply obtain a temporary email address from Mint Email. This email address is good for four hours - long enough for you to login and get the confirmation email. But, it protects you from the inevitable spam that follows giving out your real email address.

This is an inspiring idea - that puts the power in the user's hands. As Rohit says, "a solution so simple, you wonder why no one else has done it first".

For marketers, this will make obtaining real email addresses even more difficult. But, that just means we have to work harder at gaining trust, cultivating a relationship and delivering value.