I did a presentation a while ago about web copywriting, specifically for leads-based and professional services businesses. Today I rewrote it for a more general audience, and sharpened up a few things.
Here it is – have a look-see:
Sign up to receive our weekly blog posts via email.
Alright Ian, so I like the presentation, but I have to take issue with slide 71 where you show the “seattle law firm” screenshot. I’m not sure how long ago that was taken, and they’re not showing up on page 1 in my non-personalized results from a Seattle IP, but I really don’t think Facebook fan count is the primary ranking factor there. I don’t even think you can make the assumption that it’s being used as a factor in those results.
PerkinsCoie.com has a PA 78 homepage on a DA 73 site. Check the keyword difficulty stats on Moz’s Keyword Difficulty Tool for “seattle law firm” and they’re above every other page 1 result in terms of PA/DA. I don’t know what the SEO grade of F is based upon (I’m assuming on-page only?), but even if you just run the results for “law firm” on the Moz tool, they’re still in third place based upon link metrics. Even assuming that Facebook fan count is in play here is a serious error in my opinion. Am I missing something from your analysis contributing to that assessment?
Not disagreeing about social metrics in general, I just think this is a poor example for your case.
Thanks for digging (and making me look dumb). Just kidding. 😀
At the time, I used both PA/DA and on-page optimization. More important, though: When I did this test (about 10 months ago), Perkins Coie literally didn’t use the phrase ‘law firm’ or any indicators of location anywhere on their home page. Their top incoming links have nothing to do with Seattle, and their anchor text is totally unhelpful. So even with that high domain authority, I’d expect them to at least have to identify themselves as a Seattle law firm, somewhere, somehow. Or have links from other sites that clearly identify them. What they do have, though, is a clear identification on their Facebook page that they’re a Seattle firm.
It’s not the best example, I totally agree. I’ll work on getting a better one. The trick is finding one that’s services-related. I’ve got lots of great ones for retail.
Good stuff – didn’t mean to make you look bad, just wanted to make sure there wasn’t a spoken explanation missing from that slide.
You mention that “I’d expect them to at least have to identify themselves as a Seattle law firm, somewhere, somehow.” My hunch, since it’s a local SERP result, is that this might be an example of the power of Google Places categories at work. Owner-verified listing + attorney category + high trust/authority site (albeit non-regional trust/authority) + downtown Seattle address.
I feel you regarding finding a services-related result for social – that’s a tall order. I’d be looking into services that have less of a negative social vibe. Nobody likes having to go to a lawyer, so they often don’t enjoy engaging on social media. No big deal, just need to find a more positive service provider.
Carpet cleaners is one that I bumped into this week that got some decent social & reviews action. It’s a repeat business, and one that’s frequently a referral business I’d bet, and the clients are often very happy with the results and getting out all of their weird pet + kid stains. Might be a good place to look for that example…
Were you planning on covering social + SERP correlation at your Searchfest preso? You seem bullish on the topic, would love to hear more.