Happy Wednesday! As a way to make up for our lack of weekly updates the past two weeks, we wanted to give you a More Trumpety Trumpet in the form of this big ol’ roundup. It’s been broken up into sections to make it a little easier to read.
Misconceptions All Over the Place:
Paul Boag was previously considered to be an SEO hater after writing an article last winter about the pitfalls of the industry. However, he seems to have dug a little deeper and realized that “Perhaps SEO isn’t all bad 😉” after all. Performing some experiments on his own domain, Boag walks us through some of the things he learned as a n00b to the SEO biz. While he sticks to many of his original main points, he also declares humbly that:
SEO is probably worth the investment. The additional effort involved was relatively low and the benefits have been obvious.
Probably, Paul. Perhaps. 😉
On the flip side of things, Susanna Gebauer walks us through 12 common misconceptions about Content Marketing, bustin’ myths about what some call this “newfangled trend.” She talks about whether content marketing is or is not just for Google, whether any industries are “too boring” for a CM strategy, and whether or not just simply generating new content counts as content marketing.
I’m always interested in pieces like these because they point out not only misconceptions but also biases and a breakdown in communication between two different (sometimes painted as opposing) forces. Let’s just hope that the “other” side is typically reading them as well.
Content Marketing and SEO Strategies/Tactics:
Moving right along, we’ve got several articles that fall under our usual Trumpets category of Content Marketing/SEO tips and tricks.
First of all, one that you are definitely going to want to bookmark for the future is this list of 34 Essential Research Reports for More Effective Content Marketing compiled by Michele Linn and Anna Ritchie. It has many very helpful links to surveys, studies, and summaries about various aspects of the Content Marketing world. Thanks, Michele and Anna!
Next up, we have a couple of pieces on the art of link building. Matthew Barby at the newly renamed MOZ gives us a case study on building links for a travel blog that he and some friends had created recently. He details his process quite well and even gives glimpses into his actual email outreach. Brian Dean (aka Backlinko) put out another great piece on Link Building: The Definitive Guide which is not only aesthetically pleasing but also quite helpful. It’s broken down into several chapters that can help walk you through a link building strategy.
The last link for this section gives 21 Ways You’re Screwing Up Your Landing Pages (And What to Do About It). Peep Laja (again, one of the coolest names) walks us through allllll of the mistakes you can make when creating a landing page. Chances are you *might* be doing some of these things. My (least) favorite? Using cheesy stock photos:
Men in suits shaking hands? Multiracial workers smiling? Chick with a headset? They’re all out to get you – and kill your conversions. Cheesy stock photos hurt your credibility and show the world you’re… ignorant.
…In all fairness, this is a roundup about Penguin, not an article. Aaaand, I think I just justified myself to awkward Penguin.
We’ll start this off with a piece by Barry Schwartz called Google’s Cutts: Your Ugly Face Didn’t Hurt Your Rankings, Penguin Did. (First of all, great title. Makes me wonder if Amanda Bynes was actually the author of the post he references.) Essentially, Matt Cutts responds to an accusation about authorship leading to ranking decline saying:
Authorship had nothing to do with this site’s drop. The site has been affected by our Penguin webspam algorithm and that accounts for the drop.
You can read a little more about Mr. Cutts in the next section, but first we wanted to share a couple very useful tools for tackling discussions and research about the Penguin update:
- The Open Penguin Data Project: available to anyone who is interested with a mission “to leverage the SEO community to build a model of reasonable approximation of the likelihood a site will be flagged by Penguin 2.0 – style updates.” This is definitely worth playing around with in order to contribute to a working knowledge base that SEOs can use.
- LinkResearchTools’ Case Studies on Penguin: several deep dive analyses on Penguin 2.0’s penalties on various websites. Lots of very well organized material to sort through.
Matt Cutts Himself a Deal on a Great Loan:
Annoyed by the Penguin update, an angry/sneaky blackhatter decided to play a prank on Cutts by ranking for Pay Day Loans from Mr Cutts. Barry Schwartz is back again with this article, and I wanted to give a couple of screen shots of my own that capture the trolling:
Here we see the highly ranked spam site… which I clicked on because I’m bad.
A quick look at their backlinks on Ahrefs shows they are ranking with an incredibly spammy link profile:
We see that Google has since removed the link, BUT thanks to posts like these the glory can live on in screen shots forever.
…And because evidently Monday was Pick on Matt Cutts Day, I will also give you Patrick Hathaway‘s hilarious piece about a message leaked from the Google webspam department. According to Hathaway’s sources:
It is said that Matt was working ridiculous hours and was slowly starting to unravel. Exhausted after writing every GWT warning notice manually he just flipped, came in with a Bing tattoo on his forehead and was babbling on about how he was going to start his own fucking payday loans company.
Read more about The Day Matt Cutts Snapped. But you know, it’s top secret so, like, don’t tell anyone. 😛
Okay, that’s all, folks. Major thanks to AJ for helping me with this massive update!