Tracking the Intangible
Many organizations report that branding is a primary goal of their SEO campaigns.But how do you
track these less-than-tangible factors? The Left Brain and Right Brain debate.
The Right Brain says,
“Whether you call it Branding with a capital
or just ‘keeping up appearances,’
the image that your organization projects through the search engines is important.If the top-ranked
website for your company name is a rant by a disgruntled former employee,or if half of your inbound
links mention an outdated product name, you’ve got an image problem that SEO can help fix.
“Branding improvements may be a fringe benefit of your SEO campaign, or they may be a central
goal.Either way, make sure you document outcomes like improved search engine listings;inbound
link updates; cleanup of outdated,private, or inappropriate content; and mentions in other web
media such as blogs or review sites. Keep a diary or log it in your Task Journal, and pull out these
accomplishments when you need some good news in the analysis and interpretation sections of your
Monthly Report! I think of these positive little pieces of information as ‘exclamation point moments.’”
The Left Brain says,
“I’ve spent so many hours pursuing and documenting branding advances in
my SEO campaigns and, frankly, nobody seems to care unless it’s presented just the right way.
Things like eliminating references to nonexistent products and services and monitoring blog refer-
ences, media mentions,and hate sites are so important that they need quantitative measurement.
When the effectiveness of an SEO campaign comes into question, you need more than an exclama-
tion point in your Monthly Report; you need hard data!
“Try to quantify your image-improvement accomplishments in some way. For example,‘Eight out
of 14 of our misspelled listings have now been corrected,’ ‘Our company name has been men-
tioned on 63 blogs this month, up from 24 mentions in the previous month,’ or ‘Our specially
designed landing page now outranks the ‘hate site’ listing for the keywords ‘I Hate ZappyCo,’ a
phrase that approximately 250 people per month search for.’Companies like Buzzmetrics and
Intelliseek work to measure activity in this arena, known as
consumer generated media (CGM)
(I prefer to just call it ‘buzz’!). Numbers will help provide a clear baseline and measurable change.
You’ll be glad to have facts and figures at the ready when you need to justify another round of
Friday: PPC Quick Check/Link Building
Setting aside a day once a week for your PPC Quick Check and link building is the
bare minimum you should do to build your traffic and conversions. Some people spend
the majority of their SEO time on these two tasks. As advocates of the holistic
approach to SEO, we don’t recommend focusing most of your energy on just one or
two activities. But, in general, you can always benefit from spending more time on
links and PPC campaign tweaks.
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