Hosting Problems

It’s always the same, on the eve of a product launch the server decides to get all emotional. The chaps at Dreamhost are working on it, although nothing is obviously wrong. It sounds like an errant script is deciding to loop and hogging the data.

Server management is always one of those things that I dread, probably because I don’t understand it and always think the techy support guys have a laugh when my emails come in. I’m hoping most people have that slight sense of paranoia and not just me.

It’s tricky finding a good host as the good ones tend to get busy and then keel over.

Fingers crossed for the Linkbait Coaching re-launch tomorrow.

iPhone 4 Problems can be made into Linkbaiting Opportunities

Right now there is a problem with the iPhone 4. Engadget has a nice piece on it.

Lets leave aside the iPhone must-buy-on-first-day addiction, which is actually an exceptional marketing mind job although try to find someone who bought an iPhone to say, “dude, I just couldn’t help myself”, what I hear from people are the words, “well I had an iPhone 3 and…..”

The point I am making here is not to poke fun at the first buyers but to underline the fact that Apple is a highly profitable brand to linkbait. It’s a passionate brand and whether you think they are just a corporation like Microsoft or BP and their duty is to the shareholder – you would be right, but you are missing the point.

When content about Apple is published, it has the potential to get noticed by vast amounts of people who have the power to link to your site. These are the people you must stimulate to link.

Happening right now is a problem with the iPhone 4, it’s a huge embarrasement to a company like Apple and is already being taken advantage of by Nokia.

Nokia get the linkbaiters award of the day. They saw the opportunity and understood the social space, they probably don’t need the links but they will steal some of Apple’s thunder. Not quite ambush marketing but very clever.

Now, you have your site, or you may have a clients site. There is probably no niche where you can’t fit in a story like this, you simply have to be creative.

If I didn’t have to go get ready for a product launch tomorrow we could expand more on this and I could give you examples of niches that are hard to get links for could take advantage of such stuff.

This is exactly the kind of thing we will talking about at Linkbait Coaching

Linkbait Coaching 2.0 – Link Building on Crack

For the quick info, pop over to Linkbait Coaching, leave an email for future notifications if you haven’t already.

I do a lot of business with a lot of Blue chip companies, still do infact. But that is not where my heart lies, a lot of the time the decision making process takes so long it sucks any creativity out of the idea before it gets going.

What I really love is getting down in the trenches with clients who share the passion for success and making cool things happen. Linkbaiting is essentially buzz marketing but with a specific end point. It tends to be driven by ideas, but of course implementation is everything.

Social media expertise helps increase the success rate, although it is in no way an easy option.

Because I like to work with people who “get it”, rather than churning out the content for clients I thought it would be exciting to open Linkbait Coaching again. The time is right for me, I’m cutting back on client work and launching a few other projects and also I have had people ask me when it will open again ever since it closed a year ago.

For those familiar with product launches you will be aware that there is a process to maximising the number of sign ups. I’m acutually more interested in minimising the number of sign ups. As the work is one on one in a group setting (subscription based forum) it takes up a lot of my time, plus there is only so much creativity you can share in 24 hours and no I don’t outsource the work.

So, there will be no big push or marketing blitz. I prefer to have members join who are savvy and willing to get their hands dirty rather than be seduced by a carefully crafted sales letter. The closest to a sales letter is what’s here

Last time I had a lot of SEO agencies and PR agencies sign up and a lot went on to do some very interesting work.

I will make the effort to get a bunch of testimonials together from previous members.

Membership is limited to only 30 people, this is not a marketing trick, I really have to regulate the numbers as the more people the more work I have to do.

The price is �200 a month, last time it was $400 a month. I decided to go Sterling to keep the accounting easier plus it makes it easier if the currency moves like it did last time. For those who are thinking, “200 quid! You’re aving a laff!” My day rate is �750 or �150 an hour, so you are getting a bargain. This is clearly not for noobs and is a hardcore grounding in cutting edge link building and social media techniques.

If you are looking to get your stuff submitted by social media power users I can offer you one submit a month, which is most cases pays for the membership.

Doors open on Thursday, Noon, UK time. I know a few people are definately signing up but can’t really tell how fast the spots will go. It really has to be first come first serve.

I don’t think Dan Raine, Ed Dale, John Reese etc. would be very impressed with this product re-launch, but they way I see it is this – If you don’t think this is for you don’t join.

Please do not join.

This is way down the line, no prisoners taken kinda stuff and it will be clear to those who realise what this is all about how it will benefit them.

May your links be many and aged.

Why Am I Bad at SEO?

I have to confess, I am really bad at optimising my web pages. And the reason is this,

“It’s not knowledge that holds most people back in SEO, it’s Implementation”.

… which was something I tweeted a couple of hours ago whilst reading an seo forum. I have to say, link builder, Debra Mastaler and Aaron Wall really get the grey matter working.

The reason I say I am bad is that the optimisation of my pages do not match the knowledge I have in my head. Although the knowledge is of value, it’s only realised when implemented.

The reason it’s not implemented is because I can generally get away with it as I focus primarily on building exceptional content and getting links to it than optimising web pages. It works so well that the optimisation part simply gets pushed aside.

Not to say that I don’t have the urge once in a while. In the past few weeks I have looked at clients seo structure and relised a tweak here and a tweak there and their traffic will triple. But I kept quiet because creating content about 10 Kittens on Crack go on Holiday to Amsterdam is far more interesting that trawling keyword analysis and building hub pages with a little bit of linkable content and then arguing with the IT dept of said client.

You know how it is.

Something has to give, you can’t do everything.

So the answer to the question, why am I bad at SEO? It’s because I am good at something else.

Why is this important to you?
It’s very important to know what you are good at, what you are passionate about and not get sidetracked into being something you are not.

If it’s working for you, ignore the critics and just keep on with it.

Mark McGuinness Reveals the Truth about Internet Marketing

Mark McGuinness has a new fan.

I read this post on Creativity in business and it rocked my socks.

It’s the price of doing business that you have to wade through thigh high rivers of steaming….. before you get something that resonates, something that connects. Something that makes you blog and inspires you to write and freely give a bit of link love, which is of course is the essence of what linkbaiting is about.

There are two quotes in the blog post that underpins the article for me.

the less your media content looks like advertising, the more effective it will be as advertising.

How cool and zen like is that and how counter intuitive the way most marketing and business people think. Now I am not naive, the blog post that Mark wrote is 100% marketing, I am sure intention was to have people talk about it, link to it, pass it around.

It’s internal and external link structure follows best practice of bigging up your mates and business collegues without breaking the narrative flow, and providing sweeter than sweet anchor text.

It is a joy to experience such a well put together blog post and the fact that I found it connected on an emotional level is testament to the quality of the writing.

The second quote is,

If you really want to succeed online, it will take a lot of time. Let’s face it, if you want to succeed at anything worthwhile, it’s going to take a lot of time.

I realised a long time ago, if I practiced the guitar and hour a day for a year I would be OK. Which I did, but if I practiced it for an hour a day over ten years I would be excellent.

99 out of 100 are good.

But only 1 out of 100 are excellent.

Excellence cost 9 years.

These figures are illustrative of one element of becoming successful. The problem you may have is not one of giving up and failing, but one of getting bored, distracted and trying to do a million other things a the same time.

Don’t believe me? How many windows does your browser have open right now? I have two browsers open and over 30 windows open. Unnnngggg.

What I take from Mark’s blog post is to revisit the ass-achingly simple truths that must be burnt into the brain with a hot branding iron at regular intervals of the journey.

All this of course raises more questions than it answers, but that is what good teaching does.

Cheers Mark, I’m going to check out your Workshop for creative people, looks very interesting.