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The Secrets of News Search Engine Optimization Greg Jarboe President of SEO-PR Nov. 6, 2008 In 2003, we started optimizing press releases for Google News Source: Google News, Sept. 15, 2003 In 2004, we started optimizing press releases for Yahoo! News Source: Yahoo! News, Oct. 26, 2004

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The secrets of news search engine optimization l.jpg

The Secrets of News Search Engine Optimization

Greg Jarboe

President of SEO-PR

Nov. 6, 2008


In 2003 we started optimizing press releases for google news l.jpg
In 2003, we started optimizing press releases for Google News

Source: Google News, Sept. 15, 2003


In 2004 we started optimizing press releases for yahoo news l.jpg
In 2004, we started optimizing press releases for Yahoo! News

Source: Yahoo! News, Oct. 26, 2004


In 2005 southwest airlines and we won award for linking pr and sales l.jpg
In 2005, Southwest Airlines and we won award for linking PR and sales

Source: Institute for Public Relations, October 2005


Today i ll share the six secrets of news search engine optimization l.jpg
Today, I’ll share the six secrets of news search engine optimization

  • “I keep six honest serving-men

  • (They taught me all I knew);

  • Their names are What and Why and When

  • And How and Where and Who.”

Source: Epigraph to “The Elephant's Child” by Rudyard Kipling


Optimizing press releases for news search engines tackles 6 questions l.jpg
Optimizing press releases for news search engines tackles 6 questions

  • Who uses Yahoo! News, AOL News and Google News?

  • What search terms are people likely to use?

  • Where do you incorporate these terms in your press releases?

  • When do you add links?

  • Why must you use press release distribution services?

  • How do you measure the results of your campaign?


Millions of americans use yahoo news aol news or google news l.jpg
Millions of Americans use Yahoo! News, AOL News or Google News

Source: Nielsen Online, September 2008



74 of journalists and bloggers use google and or blog search l.jpg
74% of journalists and bloggers use Google and/or blog search

Source: PRWeek/PR Newswire Media Survey, March 31, 2008


Search is top way journalists research companies and trends l.jpg
Search is top way journalists research companies and trends search

  • 75% of journalists use Google and/or Yahoo searches as a way to research companies and trends, according to a survey of tech reporters

  • 66% of journalists rely on PR contacts for information

Source: Fusion Public Relations, Sept. 10, 2007


More knowledge workers read press releases than trade journals l.jpg
More knowledge workers read press releases than trade journals

Source: InformationWeek, June 6, 2006


Marketing and pr professionals differ on importance of audiences l.jpg
Marketing and PR professionals differ on importance of audiences

  • In terms of target audiences for online press releases, significant differences emerged between marketing and public relations professionals

  • PR professionals were consistently more interested than marketing professionals in reaching traditional media

  • Marketing professionals were consistently more interested than PR practitioners in reaching new media or consumers directly

Source: Society for New Communications Research, October 2008


Conduct keyword research to find the terms people are likely to use l.jpg
Conduct keyword research to find the terms people are likely to use

  • Think about the words users would type to find your pages

  • Brainstorm keyword categories that address your customer’s wants

  • Compile the brainstormed keywords for further review of traffic potential, competition, and other factors

Source: Elliance, Search Engine Land, Oct. 23, 2007


Conduct your keyword research using one or more of these tools l.jpg
Conduct your keyword research using one or more of these tools

  • Google AdWords keyword tool

    • https://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordToolExternal

  • Google Suggest

    • http://www.google.com/webhp?complete=1&hl=en

  • Google Trends

    • http://www.google.com/trends

  • Microsoft’s adCenter Labs keyword forecast

    • http://adlab.msn.com/ForecastV2/KeywordTrendsWeb.aspx

  • Trellian’s free search term suggestion tool

    • http://www.keyworddiscovery.com/search.html

  • Wordtracker’s free keyword suggestion tool

    • http://freekeywords.wordtracker.com/


Use google adwords keyword tool to find approximate search volume l.jpg
Use Google AdWords keyword tool to find approximate search volume

Source: Google AdWords keyword tool, Oct. 30, 2008


Use google suggest to find relevant search terms in real time l.jpg
Use Google Suggest to find relevant search terms in real time

Source: Google Suggest, Oct. 30, 2008


Use google trends to see variation in google and google news l.jpg
Use Google Trends to see variation in Google and Google News time

Source: Google Trends, Oct. 30, 2008


Keyword research involves more than looking up search frequencies l.jpg
Keyword research involves more than looking up search frequencies

  • Average search term is 2 or 3 words long, so use 2-word and 3-word phrases

    • Use “Russian nesting dolls”

    • e.g. “online press release” contains “press release”

  • Build each press release around the top 2 or 3 phrases that you would like it to be found for

    • Company or description

    • Product or category

    • News or benefit

Source: Elliance, Search Engine Land, Nov. 6, 2007


Incorporate search terms into your headline and lead paragraph l.jpg
Incorporate search terms into your headline and lead paragraph

  • News search engines scan the headline and at least the first 100 words of news articles

  • So, make sure your press release actually includes your target terms – particularly in the headline and first few sentences

Source: The New York Times, April 9, 2006


Optimized press release ranked 1 consumer reports story ranked 4 l.jpg
Optimized press release ranked #1, paragraphConsumer Reports story ranked #4

Source: Google News, Sept. 14, 2005


Herb kelleher went nuts when he saw cheap in his press release l.jpg
Herb Kelleher went paragraphnuts when he saw cheap in his press release

Source: Southwest Airlines, Jan. 30, 2004


We had to violate ap style in order to optimize monitor s press release l.jpg
We had to violate AP Style in order to optimize paragraphMonitor’s press release

Source: The Christian Science Monitor, August 11, 2006


Parents magazine editor offered picture taking tips instead of news l.jpg
Parents paragraphmagazine editor offered picture taking tips instead of news

Source: PRWeb, May 28, 2008


We optimized superpages com release for flowers instead of sex l.jpg
We optimized SuperPages.com release for paragraphflowers instead of sex

Source: Verizon SuperPages.com, Feb. 5, 2005


Add links intended to help people find interesting related content l.jpg
Add links intended to help people find interesting, related content

  • The unique tracking link in this Southwest Airlines press release offered a complete list of fares

  • It took people to a unique landing page, enabling Southwest to track over $80,000 in ticket sales back to this optimized release

Source: The Measurement Standard, April 6, 2004


Second link in some press releases got more clicks than the other links l.jpg
Second link in some press releases got more clicks than the other links

Source: ConsumerReports.org log files


Head of google s webspam team says main benefit is links in articles l.jpg
Head of Google’s Webspam team says main benefit is links in articles

  • “I’m not against doing press releases; press releases can be a useful part of getting traffic and building a brand.

  • “For ranking in Google, however, the main benefit of a press release is not direct links or PageRank from the press release directly; it’s primarily the people who decide to write an article and link because of that.”

Source: Matt Cutts: Gadgets, Google and SEO, Dec. 11, 2005


Buzzing blogger community can be excellent place to generate interest l.jpg
Buzzing blogger community can be excellent place to generate interest

  • “The best way to get other sites to create relevant links to yours is to create unique, relevant content that can quickly gain popularity in the Internet community.”

  • “Creating good content pays off: Links are usually editorial votes given by choice, and the buzzing blogger community can be an excellent place to generate interest.”

Sources: Technorati: State of the Blogosphere 2008, and Google Webmaster Help Center


Before using linkbaiting techniques read matt s seo advice on linkbait l.jpg
Before using linkbaiting techniques, read Matt’s SEO advice on linkbait

  • I think of “linkbait” as something interesting enough to catch people’s attention, and that doesn’t have to be a bad thing

  • Especially if it’s interesting information or fun, it doesn’t have to have negative connotations

  • Content can be both white-hat and yet still be wonderful “bait” for links

Source: Matt Cutts: Gadgets, Google and SEO, Jan. 24, 2006


Looks like the optimized release got some great pick up l.jpg
“Looks like the optimized release got some great pick up!”

  • Optimized press release: 1

  • News stories: 11

  • Target bloggers: 80

  • Blog posts: 190

  • Inbound links: 202

  • Downloads: 2,719

  • Mention in Jay Leno’s monologue: Priceless

Sources: Harlequin, June 12, 2007


Ensure your press release will be crawled by news search engines l.jpg
Ensure your press release will be “crawled” by up!”news search engines

  • News search engines don’t crawl your online press room

  • They aggregate thousands of news sources, including the major press release distribution services

  • Yahoo! News and AOL News are especially picky







Measure results of pr campaign just like search engine marketing l.jpg
Measure results of PR campaign just like search engine marketing

  • 61% to increase, enhance brand awareness

  • 58% to sell products, services or content online

  • 43% to drive traffic to your website

  • 20% to generate leads for your sales force

  • 20% to generate leads for your dealer network

Source: SEMPO, February 2008


Google study found a 16 lift in brand association for top rankings l.jpg
Google study found a 16% lift in brand association for top rankings

Source: Enquiro Search Solutions, July 2007


4 optimized press releases linked to 2 5 million in southwest sales l.jpg
4 optimized press releases linked to $2.5 million in Southwest sales

Source: Southwest Airlines, July 15, 2004


Publicity drove 450 000 visitors to christian science monitor website l.jpg
Publicity drove 450,000 visitors to Southwest salesChristian Science Monitor website

  • Within first 24 hours after series went live, more than 450,000 unique visitors flooded CSMonitor.com, 7 times its daily average in July

  • Page views for the first day broke through the 1 million mark, a massive increase from the site’s July average of 121,247 page views per day

Source: WebSideStory, Aug. 13-28, 2006


Pr campaign generated 88 296 entries to parents photo contest l.jpg
PR campaign generated 88,296 entries to Southwest salesParents’ photo contest

Source: Parents.com, Oct. 21, 2008


1 3 million searches for florists prompted by superpages release l.jpg
1.3 million searches for “florists” prompted by SuperPages release

  • Searches for “plumber”

    • 8,485 Feb. 6-14, 2004

    • 13,730 Feb. 6-14, 2005

    • Up 62%

    • This was used as site traffic growth benchmark

  • Searches for “florists”

    • 342,478 Feb. 6-14, 2004

    • 1,841,272 Feb. 6-14, 2005

    • Up 438%

    • Delta of 1,286,459 over site traffic growth benchmark

Source: Verizon SuperPages.com, February 25, 2005


These six secrets of seo represent a paradigm shift in public relations l.jpg
These six secrets of SEO represent a paradigm shift in public relations

  • As Columbus discovered, training the crews of the Nina, Pinta, and Santa Maria how to sail west was a relatively straightforward task

  • The real challenge was convincing Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand that they wouldn’t fall of the edge of the world

Source: WebProNews, Jan. 7, 2004


Harold lasswell created classic model of communications in 1948 l.jpg
Harold Lasswell created classic model of communications in 1948

Who

says what

in which channel

to whom

with what effect?


Less than half as many reporters now cover philadelphia as in 1990 l.jpg
Less than half as many reporters now cover Philadelphia as in 1990

  • The number of newspaper reporters has fallen from 500 to 220.

  • The local TV stations, with the exception of Fox, have cut back on traditional news coverage.

  • The five AM radio stations that used to cover news have been reduced to two.

Source: Project for Excellence in Journalism, May 8, 2006


News search engines reverse classic model of communications l.jpg
News search engines reverse classic model of communications in 1990

Who

seeks what

in which channel

from whom

with what effect?


No online press release will ever replace the art of the schmooze l.jpg
No online press release will ever replace the art of the schmooze

  • Bennett & Company found that 62% of journalists now obtain less than 10% of their content from PR firms

  • But 38% of journalists said the number one reason they open their email is because they know the sender

Source: Bennett & Company, Oct. 17, 2007


A public relations veteran can be a press release optimization expert l.jpg
A public relations veteran can be a press release optimization expert

  • “For a good part of the 20th century, every part of the marketing mix was in a different silo....

  • “To the extent that you can get the PR people interacting with the search people, they will discover that there are lots of things they can do together.”

Source: Michael Miller interview with Greg Jarboe, SEO-PR


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