Tag Archives: Content

A typing monkey can produce content

The future of content (as of July 2010)

A typing monkey can produce content

A typing monkey can produce content. Thanks scienceblogs.com for borrowing your monkey

I have read a number of SEO & mainstream publisher articles about the future of content. As someone who has commissioned will known publishers, someone who has paid <£10 a page and written a few bits and pieces myself, I feel I am allowed an opinion on content.

Most people in the traditional publishing believe that Google and friends want quality. And quality will always win. I don’t believe that to be true. I think that they favour Relevancy, more Quality. Quality is an abstract notion anyway. They can be the same thing, but commonly not.

Journalists and professional writers do a great job of writing well constructed arguments. Web content producers do a great job of meeting their brief. So, depending on what you want as a temporary commissioning editor you can brief that way.

Let’s think about online publishing and the internet specifically. So, if English (my preferred language) is used by many, many millions of people. For many it wont be their first language and they also want access to content, access to information and access to answers. Then relevant content is far more important than a abstract notion of Quality.

As a digital marketer and a SEO working in businesses whose objectives are about getting many visitors and conversion, choosing the appropriate level of content is what you need to do.

Maybe journalists could learn from SEO’s and digital marketers as we only produce content that is being demanded. And maybe we could learn from trying to ensure accuracy and minimum standards/consistency etc.

There are more people and with the democratisation of the web there is a progressive demand for all kinds of content.

A few articles have made me aware of the “Internet Content Syndication Council” and their own ambitions for content web standards for the net. They are likely to only read by like minded individuals If you wish to see their site, you’ll understand if I don’t make this a link
www.internetsyndication.org. But, if it does catch on, then if you are commissioning content and you want a minimum standard, someone who can demonstrate the levels of skills demanded is no bad thing.

The future is about companies, journos, writers who embrace the distribution model. Where is your audience? How do they want to read the content? How will you promote it and get it in front of them? As you are a competing with other content publishers. You competed with another daily newspaper, or another publishing house. You have probably been competing with online reading of your content versus the print form.

New services such as Demand Media, Associated Content and many more are satisfying a new demand. For How-to’s, Video and easily accessible volume content. There will be a place for ‘proper’ articles, but it will be in Sunday papers, books (still relevant in 2010, who knows when/if you read this?!).

I think we need them all.
Some related articles that sparked me into life writing these thoughts:

16th June 2010 the Financial Times
6th July 2010 on AdWeek
7th July 2010 on CNet News

Interesting reading 2009-06-26

A huge pile of reading!

A huge pile of reading!

So what from my reading has stood out this week?

My stance on content is to produce helpful, informative and engaging content. That keyword research tools are used to help design the angle of the page, but not to lead the final content. There was a great article on ScienceforSEO which talks exactly about this.

Glenn Murray summarised his approach to content planning as:

  • Do some keyword analysis to identify what customers are searching for;
  • Plan a cluster of pages around each target keyword phrase;
  • Supply the copywriter with a list of topics to write about (preferably one topic per page).

On Social media, there was a standout article on SiteVisibility about what you should measure.

The article suggests a) Clicks per thousand followers, b) Follower velocity, your follow rate, using a 3rd party site such as Twitterholic, c) CTR, clicks vs followers, an indication of what is popular and d) RT’s, how socialable your posts are. Makes sense to me, its an steer on your buzz

Changing tack and looking at some history, Stuntdubl has a easy to follow chart showing the evolution of SEO, check it out when you need a reminder/flash back to the milestones we have all encoutered. See the chart here.

EConsultancy have an article talking about the use of social media by ‘real’ journalists. Here is an extract from their article.

In 2008, 44% were reading feeds regularly; while 19% were reading five or more feeds every day. Use of online video had jumped from 28% to 38%.
This year alone has seen quite a shift: Over 70% of journalists surveyed wanted organizations to provide a page in the online newsroom containing links to every social media environment in which that company participates. 38% of journalists prefer to receive information via company tweets!
28% now say RSS feeds are important, and 62% read them regularly.

It seems in the time pressed world of writing, getting information sent to you helps!

Then on a techie note, on the official Google blog there was an article talking about making the web faster and some of the things that have happened in the past few years. Such improvements in JavaScript speed, code optimisation, server work and the new standard of HTML 5. All of which are currently on my tech wish list for my current employer.

Andrew Girdwood, I think “ranted” (IMHO quite rightly) about the state of the UK SERPs on his personal blog. I won’t even try to paraphrase – take a read.

Interesting articles 2009-03-05


An article by Steve Johnston’s consultancy on whether Affiliate links are or are not a paid link from Google’s position.  A bit old, from Oct 08, but came across this, this week.  So, lets not worry is the advice and run your affiliate programme and hopefully, maybe in the short term, you are adding links – on top of the normal justification for an affiliate programme.

This article on the new Econsultancy site is a very brave and overly honest casestudy of a domain migration.  You can see the story to-date here.

Going old-skool.  I have been making some robots.txt adjustments this week and have been re-using a classic.  Never forget Robotstxt.org for all your bot needs.

Another oldy-but-a-goodie on Link Bait.  An article I can across again this week during some research for a forthcoming cunning plan in social media.  Its amazing how simple solid articles stay the course of time.  See the Link Bait article.

A techcrunch article talking about the slow down in domain registrations.  I was actually also suprised by the number of .net registrations.  I maybe stupidly assumed that dot net was spammers.  The large dot cn probably are though.

This article shows a list of search engines and their employees who are using Twitter and giving another (if it needed any more help) push to the main stream for early adoptors.  See the original list on SELand.

Link baiting with inspiring content Holiday-Rentals.co.uk

Holiday Rentals

I am pleased to see an initiative that was kicking around when I was there at Holiday-Rentals.co.uk, (part of the HomeAway group of companies) has finally gone live.  And I have to admit, to a higher standard than I was expecting.  So, I am pleased for the team there and I wish them all the luck they deserve.

The How?
They have asked their user base of holiday home owners to supply unique and inspiring content from their respective geographies.  The owners of the properties are the local experts.  And food is an emotional topic.

The why?
First of all, good for their users.  It is another point of differentiation in a competitive travel industry.  And from an SEO perspective (which is the purpose of my site) for linking benefit.  I have seen a few links going to the site already, here is one TheFoodieList.  And Food is definately relevant for travel!

Take look for yourself on Holiday Rentals’ Travel Cookbook >>