Starter links for SEO newcomers

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the new kid on the web development block. People with SEO skill sets help to build and market your website so that it gets high search engine rankings and maximum traffic; after all, traffic = conversions = profits.

Apogee Search, one of the world’s largest Search Engine Optimization firms, has lots of great resources on their site for both new and seasoned SEO professionals. One of my favourite resources is their very in-depth Search Engine Marketing Glossary. The glossary introduces SEO-specific terms – both technical (301 redirect, alt tag, etc) and non-technical (link farm, keyword density). This portion of the site is extensive, highlighting a few terms that even I’ve never heard of (and SEO is one of my day jobs)! Continue reading

Why don’t more businesses invest in CRMs?

I’ve worked for many companies, from a large subsidiary of Viacom to a suburban mom-and-pop retail shop. The jobs were all sales oriented, to an extent, and relied on relationships with customers to keep the business afloat. Yet strangely, the one thing all of these businesses – the large and the small – had in common was that we never used a CRM.

Why the aversion? Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems are great for organising sales information. For example, look at Flightdeck CRM. Their website spells out quite plainly exactly what you can do with a CRM; everything from lead sheets to contact management is fair game. Yet the businesses I’ve worked with have used a variety of other methods to accomplish these goals, from good ole pen and paper to massive Microsoft Excel spreadsheets that were just begging to be corrupted.

So what’s out there in the land of business management software systems? I like the Flightdeck CRM, and their website for that matter. The language on the site does require a certain degree of understanding of business management, but that’s par for the course – you’re talking about high-spec company software here. But what’s great is, although there’s some jargon, the site has a very matter-of-fact approach to their sales pitch. The menus are clearly laid out (and colourful!) in a “Tell me this” way (“Tell me why Flightdeck is different”, “Tell me how Flightdeck can help me”, etc). Plain English is a wonderful thing. Continue reading

Top 5 signs your website is “too corporate”

Everybody has a website now, and gone are the days of glitter text, animated GIFs and MIDI files playing in the background. A quality website is no longer just a “homepage” but a multi-million dollar corporate marketing campaign available, at the click of a button, to a global audience.

Everyone wants that low-cost professional edge – but they don’t need it to be delivered in the same way. “Corporate” websites are fine for accountants, law firms and – dare we say – large corporations. However, not everyone needs this uber-professional presentation; it just doesn’t represent most industries. In fact, it doesn’t represent most industries.

Here are our Top 5 Signs Your Website is “Too Corporate”: Continue reading

Paid blogging with PayPerPost

Never underestimate the power of blogs. A decade ago, few knew they existed; now they number in the millions. If you still think blogs are just online journals, think again.

Companies have been using blogs for SEO-friendly marketing for several years now and have since expanded these efforts into paid posting ventures through companies like PayPerPost. Through third parties, advertisers pay bloggers to write about their companies and services, generating valuable marketing buzz in cyberspace.

PayPerPost, founded in 2006, is one of the leaders of the blog advertising and paid posting revolution. Qualifying bloggers – known as Posties – can sign up to write sponsored content on a wide range of subjects specific to their target audiences. Each post is reviewed for quality, length and requested features (advertisers may request a video, a link, or other tidbits) and Posties receive Paypal payments for completed assignments. Continue reading

Airline Livery and Airline Branding: Conclusion

For all 20 of these well-known airlines, there were no failing grades (F). This isn’t necessarily a compliment towards the branding and livery design so much as an acknowledgement that, however misguided in design, each of these airlines is well-recognised on a national, if not international, scale. They’re lucky – multi-million dollar marketing departments can save a lot of egg faces when it comes to brand recognition. That’s what money buys.

What money doesn’t necessarily buy is style, design or a greater sense of purpose for a brand. The airlines that didn’t do so well in our investigation failed on at least some of these points, sometimes mightily. Whether they were remiss in acknowledging nationalism in their brand or were simply too boring design-wise, some big-budget airlines didn’t make the grade when it came to livery branding. Continue reading