Archive for September, 2008

Creative Commons Code Snippets as LinkBait

I launched a LinkBait SEO experiment today for a client, Urban Presentations Home Staging. We have created a small application called a Home Staging Price Calculator that allows people to copy-and-paste a code snippet onto their own websites. First and foremost, the application is useful to those who want to know more about the price of staging a home for real estate sales.

The little applet is published under Creative Commons with the restriction that any websites that use the calculator must do so with a link back to the Urban Presentations website. The thought being, that if Realtors use this home staging calculator, it will likely be on a page dedicated to the concept of Home Staging. And hopefully, they would pass back a bit of link love in the process. We will see if it works.

September 26, 2008 at 1:10 pm Leave a comment

TRAFFIC New York 2008 – Domain Auction Results

This past week the TRAFFIC Domain Conference in New York held several auctions. And while I wasn’t in attendance, I do think that some of those who were, grabbed themselves some good domains at very reasonable prices. A few that jumped out to me were: ($11.5k) – Big business and big sales here with a clear consumer intent in an activity that is happening more and more online ($13k) – It is not as good a deal as, but it is a very big industry with a lot of search traffic. Good opportunity for consumer site, product referrals, community building, simple service brokering the import/export B2B of products. Focus on recommendation engine for wine matching, etc. ($15k) – Niche category-owning domain. Clear intent of what the browser is looking for. Can be an ecommerce play using outsourced fulfillment. Whoops… this one didn’t sell. The reserve was north of $75k ($2.25k) – Yellow Pages category name. Large local play component ($6k) — A different extension, but could be a very brandable classifieds-type site facilitating apartment, equipment, etc rentals. It wouldn’t take many Hawaiian condo rentals to pay for this investment. ($12.5k) – Yes it is a .org, but this should still be able to develop a loyal audience with content, heath issues. It kind of defines the audience. I can see a marketing campaign in Cosmo targeted at women who don’t understand Men. A steal at that price. ($200) – I’m including this one as this already exists as a category for cable TV, and I know that you could put a pre-existing social media YouTube type package up on it quickly… and I have a client who is considering building out a TV program focused on this niche. ($3.5k) – One should be able to make your money back on this focused on local search and OpenTable affiliate programs. ($2.75k) – wow… A low price on this one. Beef import/export is big, big business.

A note to any of the successful bidders… if you want assistance in building out any of these projects, let me know.

Edit: DomainNameNews has a good run-down of the complete list that sold here

September 26, 2008 at 12:58 pm 1 comment

Optimizing for Search Engines

This is more of an open pondering on my recent project, you know… the one that enables golfers to book golf course reservations from the golf course down their street, or around the world.

I am now in the midst of optimizing the site for search engines. I have submitted to Yahoo! Directory, DMOZ, Best of the Web,,, and a few others. I have been StumbledUpon and ‘slurped’ by Delicious. I have even retained an SEO rep to help me source some highly-relevant links … the white hat way.

But here is my question. I have just received a link from a legitimate site that has a PR8 ranking (It is a very well known and respectable site and the content that was created for me on this site is keyword rich). The thing is, given the very nature of the site and the products that I am offering, I am confident that I could get multiple links from this same site (let’s say… 1 per week). Each link is on its own page whereby the only external link goes to the website. So does the math for the search engines and page rank work like this:

“1 site, 1 page, PR8 rank, 1 link”


“1 site, 2-10 pages, PR8 rank for each, 2-10 links”

In other words, is 1 equal to 10? And will it help book golf tee times for those who are looking for the golf course down the street?


[EDIT: And before you comment on it… yes I know that having 10 sites, each of which has a PR8 link is better.]

September 11, 2008 at 5:29 pm Leave a comment

Election Advertising using Search Engine Marketing

I launched another new venture today. This one is called Direct Voter ( Direct Voter provides search engine advertising for election campaigns.

Direct Voter Logo

Right now, there is a near perfect storm for elections in North America. The US elections are set for November 4. Canada votes 3 weeks earlier in its Federal Election being held on October 14. The media and the blogosphere is abuzz (here, here, and here) with the Obama campaign and its ability to use social media and the internet to control the message as no candidate has ever done before [I think someday there would be a great university paper comparing Obama’s use of Internet marketing with JFK’s use of television marketing, but I digress].

Much like that described here by Joshua Stylman at The Huffington Post, Direct Voter equips a candidate seeking public office with fully-managed paid search campaigns. The search campaigns encompass all major search engines and use keyword sets that are built around opponents, political issues, geographic profiling, and local/election keyword combinations. The end result is that the candidate receives great brand exposure on his or her name as well as engaged clicks through to the election website.

Search engine advertising for election campaigns comes at a price point that provides a far greater return on investment than most traditional forms of marketing (including direct mail, lawn signs, postcard drops, and most assuredly TV and newspapers). With search engine advertising, you also get brand exposure for free. This is because with the millions of searches that occur in your community, your ad will appear. But you only pay when someone clicks on your advertisement.

I must have been focused too closely on the economic impact of search marketing as I didn’t see what may be the greatest benefit of this medium (until my wife pointed it out). Unlike direct mail or postcard campaigns, advertising your candidacy on Google, Yahoo!, MSN, etc. has zero environmental impact. What better way to show the voters that you are concerned about the environment than with environmentally-friendly marketing.

Anyhow, if you know anyone who is presently running for office (or is considering a challenge in the not too distant future), direct them my way… or at least… send them over to It sure would be appreciated.

September 9, 2008 at 12:13 am 1 comment