• Who are you?

  • What's the problem?

  • What will we do?

  • How will we do it?

  • What does it cost?

What Reputation?

April 07, 2009

Reputation Management is the topic du jour on many company's lips these days.

As it should be.

We're finding even the most upright firms hammered by snarky folks. Some have the right to say what they say. The company did them wrong, and they couldn't get to a solution through traditional channels (note: if you're not empowering your front-line employees to solve problems for your clients, the social mediasphere will welcome you with a barrage of bullets and hand grenades).

Other times there are folks who just want to make noise in order to deflect your success. As unbelievable as this sounds, we've seen it more than once. But negative online press can be overcome if you stay on top of it.

Finally: You. Your online rep. Your LinkedIn profile+FaceBook+PeoplePond+Twitter+YouTube+Flickr = who you are in the interwebs. And in real life.

Flyte New Media founder Rich Brooks recently ended up on a Maine news channel talking about this very subject. His blog also expounds on it in an entertaining, full featured sort of way. Sort of a Joel Spolsky of online rep.

Check it out. I'm rushed today or I'd provide some extremely insightful ways for you to add even more awesome reputation management elements to your portfolio, but...

Oh, alright. Here are a few that quickly come to mind:

1) Don't be an idiot. At least in public. Where friends and strangers with phone cams pwn you.

2) Do invest in helping others in your industry succeed.
Write blog posts about them, and comment on their blogs as well. I expect Rich will be sending a private jet for me shortly. And Joel? I like my steak medium rare and my martini dry as a desert, thanks very much.

3) Whether you like it or not, Google has already established a reputation for you. You'll find it by Googling your name, your brand, or your website. Slightly different versions will also show up on Yahoo! and MSN/LiveSearch. Regardless - it's you and your brand. You are in control if you actively contribute to the blogosphere/twittersphere/YouTubesphere, etc...

BTW: my very favorite big-brained person has recently launched the Uber-Personal branding platform for the 21st century. David McInnis crafted PeoplePond.com to help make your online profile the first thing people see when they Google your name. It's an affordable service no one should be without.

Just do it. Get active and contribute something to the online media space. Tweet, blog, Vlog and participate in everything from Amazon.com book reviews to Yahoo Answers and LinkedIn.

You'll find over about 6 weeks you can actually move the needle in your favor just by being active.

In a future post, I'll cover how to do this without driving yourself nuts. Or working until 3AM to get that LAST critical tweet out to your adoring fans. Which I still do. Daily.

Thanks much.
Mark Alan Effinger

P.S. (and don't tell me you didn't know this was coming...;-) At RichContent, we've nearly completed our online reputation management Find & Fix platform. We believe that you shouldn't just locate all the nastiness that's following you around - you should fix it in the mix (as we used to say in the recording studio).

7,200,000,000 Online Videos

January 09, 2009

Per Month.
That's a figure I ran across while sitting down with "The Designful Company". I picked the book up at MacWorld (actually David McInnis picked it up, and I immediately stole it from him).

Phenomenal book, really. Marty Neumeier is a new hero when it comes to clear, concide and mind expanding ideas.

So... 7 BILLION. That's quite the number.

I'll expound on how that relates to online images, podcasts, articles, PR and blog posts in a bit.
But first, a word from our sponsor:

Pretty funny. And very true.
Social media is definitely the future (or, ummm, the present). GOOD social media is still few and far between.

Ask yourself: Are you simply creating a bunch of "stuff" on the web?

Or are you creating a sustainable, dynamic, valuable collection of media ASSETS that you can build on?

Let's hope it's the latter. The web has enough crap. You know it the moment you open your email inbox in the morning. Or try to decipher a Google Search Result.

Let's clean up the web, and in the process, create a stronger, more valuable brand presence that reinforces your story, mission and customer affinity.

Have a great weekend. Enjoy, and let's talk about how we can work together to improve the quality, story and reach of your message... and measure what's happening with your media in the blogosphere.best,
Mark Alan Effinger

Search Marketing World 2008

April 05, 2008

Li Evans of Search Marketing Gurus compiled an excellent post regarding "the state of online PR in Search marketing" at the recent 2008 Search Marketing World Conference.

Lievanssearch_marketing_world The majority of the post/article reads like the text from a good Powerpoint presentation (or, for those of us who like REAL presentation tools, an Apple Keynote...;-).

The gist of it?

Old line PR is still holding onto their legacy approach of gladhanding/smile and dial to get in the news. Which is great... if we're in Gotham City and Batman is real, and the web didn't adopt social media.

But it did. Well, at least WE did.
You and me.

So the result is there are PR firms currently languishing "inside the firewall". Holding tightly to their media and protecting their turf. They believe that a mention in the NY TImes or WSJ will give them all the horsepower they need to further their client's needs.

Not so.

You need to measure "success" in a number of ways:

1) Number of mentions for your brand. If we're doing our job, the sites on which we promote our client's media assets will show dominantly in the SERPs. The more places visitors can click, the better the chance for recognition... and even sales conversion.

2) Universal Search Results. If you haven't heard me beat that drum (in 9/8 time), just go back a post or two. I assure you this is one of the top 10 areas of focus for our clients. And a key metric you need to understand.

3) Total traffic to your media assets. The higher the flow, the greater your chance of picking-off visitors and gaining recognition. The old-line metric of 'exposures' is still relevant.

4) Media integrity: ensuring your most visible assets in online searchers relate to your brand and products. And does the media help convert visitors in some worthwhile manner?

There are plenty more, but the kids are pulling at my sleeves to get to the movies. Seems media is my life, whether online or in our favorite second-run theater.

Warm regards,
Mark Alan Effinger

Spiders vs Eyeballs

October 24, 2007

One of the big questions we receive regularly has to do with the quality of our client media: What works, and what doesn't.

This is a great question. It allows us to talk about spiders vs eyeballs.

You SEO-SEM folks know exactly what I'm talking about. You business and media guys might need a primer. So here we go:

Universal_search_spiders_richcont_3 1) Search engines have quality issues:
    • The quality of your code

    • The quality of your words
    • The quality of your links

They're not too picky about the quality of your media. Marissa Mayer (VP Google Search and Customer Experience) says Google is getting better, but currently doesn't know good from bad. A 30 second video is simply video content. It's the words, tagging and linking that make it special.

2) People care about a different type of quality:
    • The quality of your presentation
    • The quality of your storytelling
    • The surprising revelations you provide
    • The instructional guidance you present
    • Your value proposition and USP

We could go on, but you get the idea. People have quality standards based on their life experience and their needs. Meet those standards, and you might get some eyeball time.

So, Spiders vs Eyeballs.

When we create or edit content, we we want it to perform.
We lean toward quality content that is very searchable, relevant, dynamic, on-message.

You should, too.

Doing so assures you will get search results. And if you go the extra mile and create quality content (which, with todays readily available and affordable tools and outsourced talent, should be no problem), then you get eyeballs as well. And lots of eyeballs, in the form of page and content views, comments, links all lead to improved search results and traffic.

We're creating a Content Standards document for you that will help as you lean into Universal Search, as well as collecting eyeballs. Soon as it's available, we'll post it for you.

Aaron of Prime Advertising & Design reiterated some important elements in his recent post regarding video quality and "repurposing your media assets". Worth the read.

View Mark Alan Effinger's profile on LinkedIn

Permanent Media Placement

October 08, 2007

We know.

Sounds like one of those buzzwords you hear bantered about by fluffy marketing folk with no basis in reality.

Well, think again.

Say it aloud: Permanent Media Placement.

Richcontent_optimized_online_media What does that mean?

It means we provide permanent solutions to advertising and marketing online.

That you can use our platform to put your content on hundreds and thousands (even hundreds of thousands) of high-visibility web portals.

Big ones. Ones owned by the largest online firms in the world.

Guilt by association can be a very good thing.

In this case, rest assured it is.

If you've ever felt held hostage by a advertising channel, we've just cut the ropes.
If you've ever wondered "which of the 50% of your advertising is working", wonder no more.

Now you can take your existing content, regardless of what it is, and use it to drive web traffic, visitors and sales.


We have a manifesto which I'll attach here. This might help clarify our beliefs.

There's lot more to uncover about how the world of online advertising and marketing works.


To your media momentum.

Mark Alan Effinger

View Mark Alan Effinger's profile on LinkedIn