Guest Post Linkbait

Typewriter

If I include “guest post” in a title, will I get lots of emails asking if they could get a guest post hosted and could they include a link back to their client who has a mobile toe clipping service?

I made my first guest post in 1999, it was image based and was a unique image grab of Julia Roberts. The movie Notting Hill was being made in my street and I had fun using a camcorder (remember those) to record the action. I sent the image to a Julia Roberts fansite for a link back. It’s always easy when you have unique content for a hungry crowd,

But, the landscape has changed. As agencies can no longer call up Guido to rustle up some mucus stained content that nobody will ever read and hawk it on article marketing sites, they have switched to guest posting. Blasting bloggers with barely interesting content for a link back. Some bloggers have now got savvy and started asking for money to place the posts and stupidly some agencies pay for it.

I say stupid because when that blog gets banned by Google for selling links, all the work gone into that relationship will be lost.

Some will use it to get competitors links knocked out, if a blog is linking to your competitor, buy a guest post link from them, link to a neutral party and then dob them in. Will it work? Who knows, but I am sure some will try.

If a site asks for money for a guest post I put them in a file “forget about it”. As their stability is questionable, and I only want to build links for clients that will stick around.

The truth is guest posting is one of those fads that come and go. It will work better when the sheep move on to the next easy win.

Any website should be doing a bit of this and a bit of that. Spread the tactics around, nothing is a ranking killer, but creating useful experiences is always going to be on top.

So if you want that guest post, absolutely. Bring it on, and no I am not going to tell you what the rules for getting accepted are. But donuts are involved.

Image source

Updating the List of UK SEO Companies

I started a list back in 2007 of UK SEO Companies, I’ve been neglecting the list lately and quite a few new, vibrant, kick ass seo agencies have sprouted up and deserve to be on the list.

I originally tried to keep the list focussed on business that offered only SEO, but as things developed, agencies are more likely to offer a range of services covering all aspects of online marketing.

Also, I’m going to open up more geographical specific lists, after all this is the month of sharing the link love.

Click through to the page and add your seo agency in the comments. If there is a desire, I may also start a list for web designers, although as they are always at the hairdressers they may not have time to send details.

Sometimes it's Worth Doing That Which Makes No Sense

I cranked up Tweetdeck early on Friday night to do my weekly check in. Unless I have a plan to implement I only check the feed about once a week.

I’m not really a user of Twitter, more a pusher. I mostly work with a bunch of other accounts than my main one.

But, when I heard that Pampers have a “follow me” request on every packet of nappies something clicked.

Don’t get me wrong, Twitter was great when it first started, noise to signal ratio was very low and the exclusivity factor was attractive.

But the Pampers thing seemed to whiff a little.

I would still advise clients to cut traditional advertising and put it into new media, Twitter being one of those. Although you really need to know the landscape to truly use it to increase your ROI

Which is the point, right.

And you can use it effectively to promote your brand and develop a following.

Although I don’t take on many clients these days I still have a healthy bunch to whom I can share cutting edge techniques with and the point about cutting edge techniques is that few people are actually doing them.

“Only dead fish go with the flow.”

There are incredibly profitable techniques out there right now. And no I’m not going to give them away on a blog, even when I do tell people the process they don’t quite get it. Some of it is extremely counter intuitive.

The point is if you are feeding where the rest of the herd are, you are going to be drinking muddy water, with the odd floater sailing by.

Twitter is one big, muddy trough. Most people don’t mind that, and to be honest it’s all they need.

Some need to be where the herd hangs out, nothing wrong with that. If you have thousands of followers and you can sell to them, it makes perfect sense.

Observing the social media scene as someone who uses it as a business tool, rather than the social aspect I see there are certain reasons that some platforms succeed and some fail, making gentle hissing noise as they go.

Most don’t realise you can actually break most rules of social media and benefit from it. Too many “How to Tweet” books out there, which I find very useful when I need to nod off.

So, I thought I would break a few rules and throw something out there, just to see. Something that was a bit of nonsense.

I had the germ of an idea and probably in about 1 hour had bought a domain name, set up the web page, created a mailing list. I hadn’t done this for years, I usually get someone else to do it and the speed surprised me.

I called it Slagster.com I will invent a juicy tale of how I came up with the domain later.

After a few jokes about Angel investors and a failed IPO and a lot of nonsense Tweeting from me – I’m sure some people thought that Charlie Sheen had hacked into my account – I noticed someone else had already signed up a Twitter account for Splagster (good luck with that) and a bunch of people signed up to the email, without knowing what the hell what it was about.

Until now.

I do have the germ of an idea, something simple, something tasty, something counter intuitive. Not something for the IM crowd, but something designed to make a lot of noise and be disruptive.

It’s a challenge, and it’s exciting.

And it probably wont happen.

But that’s not the point. The point is to do something that sometimes does not make sense, even at the expense of attracting a few WTFs. It refills the reservoir and girds your loins. Not sure I want my loins girded, but anyway.

Splagster.com, it definitely will not be what you think, but sign up anyway.

Is Blog Commenting Useless for SEO

The difference between an SEO who has tested commenting on blogs and one who hasn’t is that the one who hasn’t says it doesn’t work and the one who has keeps quiets about it and keeps commenting.

As an SEO it also marks you out as to whether they are in the Premier League or still slugging it out for the pub team.

Some SEO “experts” will see say, “nofollow”, doesn’t pass juice. End of.

This is a mistake.

A blog comment is an advert, it is a branding tool, it will add to the sum of how people perceive you. How people perceive you has a direct impact on whether they will link to you.

For example, when SEO “experts” say blog commenting is useless, my perception of their skill as an SEO is further informed.

It’s well known that blogs and their comments get scraped and nofollow removed.

A visible link means that a human can visit the site and drop a dofollow if they like what they see.

Blog owners tend to check out the links left in the blog comments, which means you can get very important bloggers to come to your site.

A blog comment can demonstrate your skill in an area and make people go, “ooohhhhhh, she’s good.”

If blog spamming did not work, do you really think it would still be happening? What’s interesting about the nofollow that was introduced to blogs to stop spamming is that it hasn’t done anything to stop it.

Also, even when the link was dofollow and SEO’s would look at a blog and say, “but it’s not a real website”

Does this mean that you should go out and leave “Great post”, in the comments of as many blogs as you can find. No, because there is a way to blog comment and there is a way to not.

Blog commenting is a tool in the tool box, brought out for specific tasks and for specific reasons. I’m not not going to give you a step by step guide of how to do it as you probably have a massive brain (you’re reading this blog) and have worked it out on your own by now.

However, I am always willing to listen to the other side of the argument and so if you have data on to show that blog commenting is useless I would love to hear it.

One of the problems of course is that it can be really boring if you hae no opinion and that outsourcing it can lower the quality.

It’s tricky, which means if you hit the sweet spot there are few others creaming it.