Spam Emails And Mass SEO Marketing

This is a subject I like to revisit from time to time.  I received this email and I’m sure it went out to thousands of businesses.

At SEO Liverpool we’re sick to death of this type of lame marketing exercise. This is potentially the most harmful type of spam, as it can destabilise new campaigns and usually results in lots of phone calls from clients.

Let me know your thoughts.

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Hello,

I hope you’re doing well!

I was surfing through your site where I saw that your site was not ranking on any search engines.

If you are interested we want to increase the number of visitors to your website, it is important that you have a top search engine position.

Our search engine optimization experts will run a ranking report showing you exactly where your website currently stands in all the major search engines. Then we will email you our analysis report along with the recommendations of how we can increase your rankings, and improve your websites traffic dramatically!

We strictly work on performance basis and can assure you of getting quality links with a proper reporting format for your site as well.

We wish you the best of luck and looking forward to a long and healthy business relationship with you and your company.

Please do let me know if you have any questions.

Kind Regards,

****

Post:- Online Marketing Manager

Reply me:- 

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The main issue I have with this type of email, is that it reinforces a certain stereotype. The stereotype that people working within our industry are opportunists, willing to take on any work, and we’ll scare you into it. If you speak with web designers, developers and many other associated industries, they’ll tell you that search engine optimisation SEO has a poor reputation.

Sadly the companies that operate in this manner will promise the earth and very rarely deliver.

The reasons why I feel this type of email is harmful

  1. It isn’t addressed to anyone (this gives you a clue that they have just spammed an entire network)
  2. How can they possibly investigate your website and the potential keywords. Especially as we’ve worked out that this email has been sent to thousands of people.
  3. Good SEO/SEM firms do not advertise in this way and here is why…
  • It’s simply not ethical for an SEO company to work with more than one client in a specific industry.
  • It’s simply not possible to scale a business to deal with that many prospects and effectively evaluate opportunities.

No Two SEO Strategies Are The Same

Once a business approaches an SEO company, a review (almost a due diligence project) needs to take place for the following reasons…

  1.  Can you work in this area? Do you have the expertise? Is it ethical? Do you already have a client in this space?
  2.  You need to establish a base level of current activities.
  3.  Is it possible with a reasonable budget to get those identified positions

A responsible SEO company will evaluate…

  • Competitiveness of keywords.
  • Other competing companies.
  • A basic breakdown of what need to change or adapt.
  • Internal resource and departments involved in the web property.
  • Is their potential for a good ROI (return on investment)?

Return on investment is key when dealing with clients

If the level of investment in SEO, website changes and social strategies isn’t proportional to estimated traffic, conversions, profit margins and eventually scale-ability…  then it’s a no go!

e.g. The simple economic formula

If you make money by selling in volume ‘stack high and keep it cheap’ and search volumes are low, then it may not make business sense.

Acceptable Prospect

  • High Value Product/Service
  • Proportionally Good Search Volumes
  • Low Or Medium Keyword Competition

Difficult Proposition

  • Low Value Product/Service or Poor Margins
  • Low Search Volumes
  • Medium To High Competition

Most sites fall in-between and therefore a robust research piece should be your first port of call.

Conclusion

The inadequacies in such a poorly researched email wouldn’t fool anyone in the industry. On closer inspection this company hasn’t got a website that relates to the email address sent. Therefore, anybody who conducts a little research won’t be drawn in.

Unfortunately some SME’S will be fooled! Either way, the SEO industries credibility is under-threat as these type of emails are becoming more common.

 

 

 

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Banners for (SEM) Dummies Part 1

Banners for (SEM) Dummies

I used to work for  mainline consultants. We were very specialised and very good at what we did. We all drank the “search” elixir and laughed at the poor click rates and conversion rates that our counterparts at the online display (banner) agency were getting. Search is still (and probably will always be) one of the strongest online vehicles due to its “double opt-in” nature–a user has to not only type in a relevant keyword to trigger your ad, but read the ad copy and click it before you are charged. The ROI and ROAS of that delivery method has proven itself…thus, most online marketing budget allocation has a huge portion going to Search.

I remember one distinct marketing meeting with a large client where all of the various agencies were reporting their numbers; the print folks had their presentation, then broadcast, then online display, etc. When they got to us, everyone in the room was amazed at our success rates. I left that meeting vowing to never, ever, ever run display campaigns. It was all Search for me!

Only later did I realise I had been doing display for years!

When I set up Summit Online Marketing a full-service digital agency last year, it dawned on me that I had been doing display advertising all along via Content campaigns in Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft. DUH, right? Because Content (and later Site [Placement] Targeting) was offered by search engines, I had rolled it all up to Search. Big mistake!

Now that I’m a fully integrated digital marketer (my agency manages search, display, mobile, email, digital out-of-home, analytics, affiliates, etc.), I truly believe in the value of display/banner marketing… not only for direct response, but especially for branding and reaching users at the front end of the buying cycle. Remember, search relies on users to actively be querying a search engine to trigger ads. If no one knows to type in your keywords, then your Search efforts are sunk. Thus, banners can be a SEM pro‘s best friend!

With the news that Google will be expanding the features of its Content Network, I thought it might be good to share some banner insights to SEM pros that are using Content now so they know what the future might hold for this kind of targeting. Google has already begun to open up their Content offering to allow advertisers to use third party ad servers and these tools have important features that will change the landscape of Content.

(More to follow on Monday)

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Thanks for your patience… SEO Liverpool are blogging again.

Thank you for your patience

Good news…. We’re starting to blog again.

Over the past year, unfortunately we’ve been unable to contribute to this blog. I’d like to tell you that this will all change. Extra investment into summit online marketing will enabled us to update the blog daily from Monday the 20th of September 2010.

Please feel free to contact us with any post ideas or contributions

Regards

The SEO Liverpool Team

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The SEO Way of Working

SEO Liverpool is currently between offices. Therefore I’m trying a new way of working!

Not may people know this but I love discussing with other search engine marketing consultants office situations and working patterns. I suppose I’m nosey but it can also be a very lonely business and it always helps to know your not the only one in a particular situation. Recently I’ve been working from home and decided I just couldn’t take the boredom any more.

From the posts I’ve read over the last couple of years and the conversations I’ve had, lot’s of creative types have been working a strange nomadic existence where you travel between wifi coffee shops. My favourite in Liverpool FACT (the name of the venue) where I’ve been working over the past couple of days. It’s a fantastic place, cinema / coffee shop / bar, with the added art installations that I must say are phenomenal.

SEO Liverpool seems to work really well within this environment as it has some bustle about it… I’m not one for working in total silence.

Unfortunately, I’ve come across two major problems with this system of working

1) Cost; although its much cheaper than office space what’s the etiquette for buying coffee/tea per hour so I don’t seem like some sort of hobo.

2) Toilet breaks; without wishing to be crude the copious amounts of tea, coffee and hot chocolate do take a toll. Shooting off to the loo my result in the table with the socket being taken by a fellow enthusiast.

With the latter in mind should I pack up my laptop and carry with me for the interlude? Should I strike up a conversation with the closest person and ask them to ‘keep an eye’ on the valuable tool I have? Should I only take it if I go for… a longer break.

Help!

An added dimension is I’ve already met some great creative types and even some SEO consultants, in fact (no pun intended) this place is a networking hotspot.

What is a man to do?

Your thoughts

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