The Portent Blog


31 Aug, 2011

Writer’s block: An infographic

By Ian Lurie

I have horrific writer’s block right now. I’m tired, burned out on writing and generally verbally fried. Alan Bleiweiss gave me an amazing idea: So, thanks to Alan, here it is. All my limited artistic talent focused like a blurry laser beam in a snowstorm on my current nemesis: Writer’s block. I don’t know. I… Read More

Internet Marketing

30 Aug, 2011

Marketing for marketers: Heal thyself

By Ian Lurie

My forehead should be bleeding. I’ve pounded it against my desk about thirty times in the last 24 hours. If I can help other people and companies market themselves, why can’t I ever do it for myself? This isn’t the first time I’ve asked myself this question. But it’s the first time that I can… Read More

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sekrit-raccoon Internet Marketing

25 Aug, 2011

The IT department isn’t killing you – you are

By Ian Lurie

Dear CEO/VP of operations or whatever you are: Information technology departments don’t kill businesses. CEO’s using IT departments kill businesses. I’m reading a great book by John Hughes: Haunting the CEO (affiliate link). He’s a CIO-for-hire, and he’s seen it all. I’d started writing this post before I started the book, but the book really… Read More


24 Aug, 2011

The Ian Lurie Field Guide

By Ian Lurie

Someone at Portent asked me to put together an explanation of why I behave the way I do. They meant it in a nice way. So this is it: The Field Guide to Ian Lurie, written for “Portent” employees and anyone else I might encounter in the working world. Feel free to laugh at me,… Read More

tools small Design & Development

22 Aug, 2011

New SEO tool: Server response code tester

By Ian Lurie

AKA: The Responsinator Lee Odden, Todd Malicoat, Jonathan Allen and I did a site clinic/lab at SES San Francisco last week. Of 5 sites we reviewed, 4 delivered the wrong response codes if I: Visited a broken link on the site. A server should respond with a ‘404’ error code. Most of these servers instead… Read More

Internet Marketing

17 Aug, 2011

Content curation in 13 minutes a day

By Ian Lurie

Steady, smart content curation can grow your audience on lots of social media outlets. It’s list building, social media-style: You help folks find and filter other people’s good stuff. In exchange, they start paying more attention to your good stuff. Just the facts, folks: This is a step-by-step look at how I do my daily… Read More


15 Aug, 2011

Pedal Harder, Dammit: In marketing, effort means more

By Ian Lurie

I’d love to say I’m about to draw a spectacular parallel between cycling and internet marketing. But internet marketing isn’t anything like cycling. I’ve never barfed after a hard day of internet marketing. Nor have I gotten road rash because of a badly-behaved poodle. And I never won a bicycle race because of my brain… Read More

Objects collection: Stethoscope Analytics

12 Aug, 2011

Google analytics video: Diagnosing lost SEO keywords

By Ian Lurie

Since I ranted about internet marketing training yesterday, I thought I’d post a video I just did for the team. This one’s a really quick look at Google Analytics, and how to do a fast analysis of lost organic search traffic: Quickly find and diagnose lost keyword-specific traffic in Google Analytics. I never build these… Read More

Internet Marketing

11 Aug, 2011

We suck at teaching internet marketing. Why?!!!

By Ian Lurie

How the hell do I teach my team internet marketing? Why do we all suck at it? I spend a lot of time on this puzzle. My company’s survival depends on it. I have to find ways to teach, and to teach teachers, while working it around everyone’s busy schedule. And I have to find… Read More

careful selection Internet Marketing

10 Aug, 2011

Internet marketing lessons: Select, don’t accumulate

By Ian Lurie

There’s one concept in Atlas Shrugged that’s always stuck with me: Select, don’t accumulate. Ayn Rand was referring to stuff, of course: Everything from throw rugs to chairs to books. I love the idea in ‘real life.’ But it works awfully well in internet marketing, too. Accumulation marketing: We all do it Accumulation marketing is… Read More

Quotation Marks Random

5 Aug, 2011

Quotes that make me cry inside

By Ian Lurie

It’s Friday. I’m tired. Here are some quotes. All of which are true, but edited to protect the utterers: “We don’t need marketing. Our product is great.” I’d punch you, but I’m paralyzed by the stupid. “We need to test that, first.” No, you don’t. You don’t have to test whether having a ‘buy now’… Read More

priority small Internet Marketing

4 Aug, 2011

The internet marketing priority list

By Ian Lurie

In internet marketing, your top priorities are, in this order: Appeal. A desirable product. Quality. A product that doesn’t suck once people have it. Visibility. People have to find you when they need you. Stability. Your web site has to work. Ease of use. Make your site so easy to use, a brain-dead zombie could… Read More


3 Aug, 2011

Newt Gingrich, Twitter and FollowerGate – Really?

By Ian Lurie

Lord knows I’m no fan of Newt Gingrich. His politics are so far to the right of mine he disappears over the horizon. However, he’s not the kind of guy to go hunting for fake self-esteem boosters. So when the nerdoverse exploded over ‘Followergate’ (term coined by PeekYou) and sprayed it’s way to CNN and… Read More


1 Aug, 2011

Being nice isn’t enough: Customer service lessons at the Apple Store

By Ian Lurie

In customer service, ‘being nice’ and ‘trying hard’ isn’t always enough. Sometimes, you have to be competent, too. Capable, even. Act 1: Undeath (of a monitor) At work, I have a 30” Apple Cinema HD. It is a fantastic monitor. Alas, 2 weeks ago when I plugged it into my laptop, it went all cattywampus,… Read More


29 Jul, 2011

MozCon 2011 – Awesome. Go in 2012.

By Ian Lurie

OK, first off, I have to make something clear: I am not an SEOMOZ fan. Don’t get me wrong. There’s nothing wrong with building fantastic tools, having a great conference, gathering all the SEO geniuses and best developers and generally smartest people in one place. I have no problem with a company so famous my… Read More

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