Marketers can always be certain of one thing: uncertainty. This is why empirical evidence in SEO counts for so much more than anecdotal hoo-hah.
Just a quick note before we get into the meat of today's column. I wanted to mention the general response to my campaign to take the "engine" out of "search engine marketing," from two columns ago.
There's no doubt many people want to see "engine" disappear and stick with "search marketing." Looking down the long tail of my responses, however, it's not hard to see many people would like to see even "search" go and just stick with a more rounded marketing description. Interactive, online, Web, or whatever precedes it -- but more so, just emphasize the marketing.The debate is open and live, please send your comments.
Myths and MathIf you have a formal background in marketing, you'll have a deep knowledge of the mechanisms that underlie the marketing plan based on both quantitative and qualitative research.
Recently, I conducted a quick interview with Garcia. I spoke to him on his background and emergence in the SEO field. I also asked him about his thoughts on the level of knowledge relating to information retrieval within the SEO community when he first started observing.
"Pure nonsense," he said. "However, in the interest of fairness I could say the same about the wrong impression many CS scientists have about SEOs and SEMs, labeling them as a bunch of spammers."
Garcia coined a few phrases on his blog that recently put a grin on my face. "Blogonomies," "blogorrhea," and "linkphilis" are new terms to the industry. I asked him to explain them.
"These are social behaviors worthy of study," Garcia responded. "I define a 'blogonomy' as the dissemination of false knowledge through electronic forums and 'blogorrhea' when the dissemination is intentionally done for a profit or commercial interests. These behaviors are prevalent in the blogosphere." Hence, the "blogo-" stem.
He continued, "Professor Jon Klienberg has researched the concept of 'burst' in the blogosphere. Along that line, while not a requirement, a 'blogorrhea' outbreak can be observed when a blogospheric burst is the result of a blogonomy.
"Spreading a blogonomy by means of not using a 'link condom' leads to 'linkphilis,'" said Garcia. "Often the spreading agents are link spammers or someone posing as a respected authority. Linkphilis is a condition involving links pointing to documents with corrupted knowledge, like blogonomies. Thus, weight transmitted through these links can be considered infected weights. Note that here we are not talking about mere link farms or off-topic content, but about the spreading of false knowledge and a special kind of burst. Most link models score weights but overlook this problem."Further, Garcia said, "by a 'link condom,' I mean any mechanism that will prevent the transmission of weight from corrupted links. Such a mechanism is not just a mere 'no follow' attribute. So far the only protection is human reviewers. Tagging is not an option since this has its own 'staggers' [spam taggers] and 'maggers' [malicious taggers] to deal with. The problem is pervasive: how could one use human reviewers or link condoms in large scale databases that are continuously changing?"
You can find the full text of my short interview with Garcia here.
Meet Mike at Search Engine Strategies in San Jose, August 7-10, 2006, at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center.
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Mike Grehan is Publisher of Search Engine Watch and ClickZ and Producer of the SES international conference series. He is the current president of global trade association SEMPO, having been elected to the board of directors in 2010.
Formerly, Mike worked as a search marketing consultant with a number of international agencies, handling such global clients as SAP and Motorola. Recognized as a leading search marketing expert, Mike came online in 1995 and is author of numerous books and white papers on the subject. He is currently in the process of writing his new book "From Search To Social: Marketing To The Connected Consumer" to be published by Wiley in 2013.
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