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News: Link Building, Microsoft & AOL, Matt Cutts Interview

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             "Understanding Internet Search Technology"
Moderator:                                          Published by:
Detlef Johnson                                       SearchReturn
October 11, 2005                                       Issue #005
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                   .....IN THIS DIGEST.....

// -- FEATURED POST -- //

         "Link Building"
                 ~ Mike Banks Valentine

// -- NEW DISCUSSION -- //

        "Microsoft & AOL"
                 ~ Digest

        "Matt Cutts Interview"
                 ~ Digest

        "Press Release Optimization"
                 ~ Digest

// -- ESSENTIAL NEWS -- //

         "Google Catalog Search Update"
         "Yahoo! Podcast Search"
         "Labels Want Their Split"
         "Mobile Marketing Association"
         "Mobile Meta Search"
         "Yahoo! Integrates Blogs Into News"


// -- FEATURED POST -- //



"So, what motivates you to link to another site?"
- Debra Mastaler, Digest #002

From: Mike Banks Valentine 

First let me say welcome back to discussion Detlef! I-Search was
always my favorite and I missed the great discussion topics. I've
missed this type of search engine forum and I wish you continuing
success with it!

On to the topic that got my attention:

I get a steady stream of link requests for three of my own sites
and a half dozen others that I manage for clients. For about the
last year, I've had a standard template reply that I send to all
link panhandlers. Basically, I require that the link requester
submit articles on the topic they are targeting in order to be
given a link from the site they are targeting.

If the topic exists on the site they [are] link-begging for, I
will consider an article for inclusion on my own - or for client
managed sites. It must be good and it must stand on it's own
merits. This creates a new page on our site and means it must
gain it's *own* PageRank over time. Since it usually goes in a
subdirectory of that particular topic which already ranks well,
it usually doesn't take long to rank well itself.

Needless to say, 99% of the link panhandlers don't reply or
submit articles. Those that do usually get published and linked.
Most of them rank pretty well in a short time, therefore giving
the submitter pretty good PR links, and increasing the content
and relevancy at my site (or clients) and increasing the value of
the links to the article submitters.

This is my strategy to get links for myself and for clients as
well. Submit my articles (and sometimes ghost written ones for
clients) to those sites we want links from. Many do publish them
and if they won't include the article, they very often *do*
include the link from their links directory anyway. Win/Win.
I've been a long-time advocate for article marketing and use it
extensively to rank well for myself and others. Offer something
of value in exchange for links instead of panhandling for them -
it works wonders.

The thing I don't understand [are] sites that are full of
articles and *won't* accept one from a particular client or from
me because we are perceived as competitors. That is shortsighted
and paranoid. The clear reason is that an article serves as a
perfect sales letter of sorts.

They are horrified that anyone who reads it on *their* site will
actually click through to my site from the reesource box and hire
me instead. What often happens instead is that people read the
article and look up at the existing site navigation, then click
through to the sales page and hire *them*. I've actually just
done a sales job for the competitor by having my article on their

Well I'm so busy right now, I say more power to them.

Article marketing works to increase visibility and PageRank for
*both* of us, so many are willing to host the articles and link
to me (or clients) from those articles. They are the smart ones.
You will never be found in a link directory. Humans don't look at
them and search engines are devaluing them anyway.

Do I need to tell you that this is on my blog and will be an
article soon?

Mike Banks Valentine



// -- NEW DISCUSSION -- //



The software giant, Microsoft, has a number of search initiatives
that need users. A deal with AOL could be ideal for Microsoft to
lift their search audience considerably, and in short order.
Powering AOL Search would automatically qualify them as a major
contender. Powering Sponsored Listings as part of the deal would
shift ad revenue to Microsoft, revenue that Google currently

They are in talks again. How would this work out for the pair? A
deal of this magnitude, could give Microsoft the sure-footed
standing in the search business that it out-spokenly desires.





Aaron Wall does a superb job with outstanding questions for the
most visible Googler (to SEOs). Matt has been a familiar face on
our conference circuit for years now, and has taken it upon
himself to really come to understand what he can about the
industry as a whole.

Aaron doesn't shy away from leading questions: "Is all SEO spam?"

Matt even owns a blog, though the blog is all there is at his
site (for the time being anyway). As for being open, Matt has
engaged more discussion than any other search engine spokesperson
to date, with Tim Mayer of Yahoo! in second place, and Paul Gardi
with Teoma coming in third. Eytan Seidman (of MSN) may become
more visible in 2006. That has yet to be determined.





A number of SEOs utilize PR services to help get online "buzz"
going, (which can lead to link building somewhat naturally). This
can be done effectively but you always have to have a real story
to tell or your buzz falls flat. Any journalist worth their salt
vets a story you're pitching and will call your bluff, (or just
ignore a shoddy story). Low-quality releases may even be
considered spam. When done thoughtfully, press release
optimization has benefits, key among these is pseudo-natural link
building, (comes with referrals too).



// -- ESSENTIAL NEWS -- //


==> Google Catalog Search Update

Essentials: "Google is apparently in the midst of a major
overhaul of Google Catalog Search."



==> Yahoo! Podcast Search

Essentials: Web-based player available with the service.
Personalization and recommendation services on the way.



==> Labels Want Their Split

Essentials: Google listening to label muscle.



==> Mobile Marketing Association

Essentials: "The idea is to help individual carriers bundle
branded mobile search into their service packages, while also
enabling the monetization of out-of-garden content."



==> Mobile Meta Search

Essentials: " also works on regular web browsers too!"
- Gary Price



==> Yahoo! Integrates Blogs Into News

Essentials: "Yahoo's blending of news and blog sources is a nice
way to get perspectives on current events from both professional
and amateur sources." - Chris Sherman


Essential Headlines:


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