Interactive Marketing – Ever Changing & Often Unclear

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Tom Schmitz Aug 7 2009

Keeping up to date in interactive marketing is painstaking and frustrating. Yes, we are knowledgeable experts, but if you think we will have the answers at our fingertips every single time…you need to rethink your drink.

Let’s take SEO as an example.

Things Change

This year Google announced that the nofollow attribute no longer reflects or redirects PageRank like a closed irrigation gate. Instead it evaporates link juice. By the way, it took Google almost a year to let everyone in on this change.

Here is another example of Google’s changing tune. In 2005 Matt Cutts wrote,

If you’re straight-out using CSS to hide text, don’t be surprised if that is called spam. I’m not saying that mouseovers or DHTML text or have-a-logo-but-also-have-text is spam; I answered that last one at a conference when I said “imagine how it would look to a visitor, a competitor, or someone checking out a spam report. If you show your company’s name and it’s Expo Markers instead of an Expo Markers logo, you should be fine. If the text you decide to show is ‘Expo Markers cheap online discount buy online Expo Markers sale …’ then I would be more cautious, because that can look bad.

It was clear to everyone that Google blessed CSS image replacement for company logos as long as the text faithfully represented the image content. When you read the full discussion this becomes even more apparent.

Then, on June 18, 2009 Google steps in front of video camera and changes everything.

 

In the video, Richard M. from Australia asks,

If you have a company logo on your site, what is the best way to include the text of the logo for SEO purposes? ALT tag, CSS hiding, or does it matter?

Matt Cutts answers emphatically,

Yes it does matter. It’s much better to use an ALT tag than to use like, ‘I’m hiding some CSS, you know, 9,000 pikels over to the left of the web page,’ or something like that.

I would not hide it using CSS or anything like that when there’s a perfectly valid, perfectly simple way to do it that does the job just fine.

Things Evolve

Google says they now read JavaScript links and index Adobe Flash content. It’s true. They do. It is also true that any developer can create JavaScript and Flash content that Google cannot crawl. They don’t have to resort to fancy tricks to roadblock Google either.

If you asked me right now what types of JavaScript links Google will crawl and which ones they will not, I’m not going to know. First, I’m not a developer or a connoisseur of Javascript links. Second, this is a fast evolving area where Google is constantly improving their abilities.

There is a First Time for Everything

I learned HTML in 1995. Since then, I’ve marketed and optimized countless websites, big and small. Even now, 14 years later, I’ll come across situations I’ve never dealt with. It happened just last month (sorry, I cannot be more specific).

When I come across something new I research it and interview other experts. When the unexpected rears its head, I become the expert.

Sometimes I Don’t Know

Google measures over 200 ranking factors or signals. I know this because they said so. I don’t know what all 200 signals are. Google closely guards that information. Even though, I have lots of practical knowledge from experience and research. For example, I can tell you that title element content is highly influential (Now there’s a revelation!).

Chances are good that I’ve not worked with your niche before. Otherwise, I’d already represent your competitor. ;)

I’m not going to know who the major players are, what the best keywords are, or where to find good topical links. Well, not today. But tomorrow? Watch out!

Why? Because I know where to look and how to do the research. Here at Portent we do it better than most.

So yes, interactive marketing tools like SEO, social media, PPC, email marketing, banner ads and affiliate management change. Interactive marketing changes constantly.

Deal with it.

We do.

tags : Interactive Marketing