To Meta Description or Not

Matt Cutts recently released statement on how to decide whether to put a meta description tag on all pages or not. Click here for the article.

I have been in the industry for a while now, and needless to say that our meta description is quite the 2 seconder that we need to sell our pages. Whenever you come up in the results, it’s that little space that Google gives you to promote whatever you want to in the page that was indexed and shown in the SERP (search engine ranking page)

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So for me it really depends. An initial assessment of a specific business website knowing all of its pages can lead to knowing if creating a meta description for all the pages be necessary.

A key process is to identify the potential of the pages that your website has and will have. As you valuate each page, you would then be able to classify the page’s part in your business model.

It is but normal to be in the situation where you will need to audit a full functional website already and at some cases implement the optimization for each page to target their keywords. There is no 1 page that can target all the keywords that a website wants or potentially can. So in the process, you will need to do some keyword matching understanding the nature of your pages and the keywords that it can target.

After matching each page with the keywords you want it to target, you should then run through all the pages again with the question of “Would this page qualify as an effective landing page?”. Whenever the answer is YES – then you should start creating a unique meta description for that page.

Another method would be working backwards. Look at your Analytics and see which are your most effective landing pages or in other words your entrance pages. How are people coming to see your website and where do they land the most. These are your most effective landing pages which you will need now to make sure that it is optimized well for your business model. These pages surely need unique meta description.

In conclusion, if you are to Meta – Meta it correctly or NOT Meta at all! 🙂

White Hat Email Marketing is the Name of the Game

Been so busy lately but I found a really great article to share.

Many marketers tell me that they are frustrated with the size of their email marketing lists and their slow rate of growth. Because many business owners equate a big list with success, they often end up considering strategies that are a long way from email marketing best practices and which might even blur the lines of legality.

Unlike other areas of online marketing (particularly SEO) where so-called black-hat marketing techniques are adopted (often unwisely) to game search engines, email marketing is governed by law and policed heavily by the ESPs and ISPs who have a reputation and a quality of service to maintain. In this respect, white hat email marketing is the only real game in town. However, that doesn’t stop some email marketers from taking unadvised shortcuts – often at their own expense.

Bad practice #1: cheap lists

Successful email marketing can usually be credited to three factors: permission, relevancy and the quality of the message or offer. An untargeted list falls at the first hurdle. It is, however, possible to rent lists from reliable sources – such as trade magazines supporting your industry, in which case you would normally provide the list broker with the campaign and they would deliver the email for you. Whenever you rent a list, it is vitally important to optimize your landing pages to capture details from interested parties.

Bad practice #2: harvesting data from dubious sources

I’ve seen this done in more than one marketing department. Scraping contact details from old databases (which might have followed a salesperson from their last place of employment).  Permission to send bulk marketing communications should not move from one company to the other as easily as employees. If your new employee wants to work their old network of contacts, they need to pick up the phone.

Bad practice #3: targeting old data

Just because your company had a relationship with a prospect or customer years ago, it doesn’t mean they suddenly want to start hearing from you unexpectedly again. An email marketing relationship needs to be built from the initial client/company engagements and regularly maintained. If you have not contacted someone in the past six months, try to re-engage them before targeting them with regular email marketing campaigns. Failure to do this will result in poor levels of engagement and spam complaints.

Five white-hat tips for growing your list the right way

1.    Think quality first: List size isn’t all it is cracked up to be. Your primary focus should be on list quality. As you grow (using the tips below) you should try and maintain this quality. Remember that a big, untargeted list can drive up your email marketing costs and potentially impact negatively on your reputation, damaging the return on investment you see from your email campaigns.

2.    Plan for conversion: When someone lands on your website, don’t let them go without offering them something. Even if they don’t buy, you want them to return, and email marketing is the most efficient way of doing this – so incentivize them to leave their email address with you. The offer of a free newsletter is not a great incentive. Instead, offer them the promise of fantastic future deals, greater insight into the products or services you offer or something that money can’t buy, like a competition or prize drawing.

3.    Get social: Social media is a great way to engage and hold conversations with your clients and potentials customers. However, it is not always a great selling environment. In an ideal world, your social media followers should also be your email marketing subscribers and vice versa. iContact (email marketing from Vocus) gives you all the tools you need to drive email subscriptions via social media as well as socializing your email marketing messages via sites like Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin. To maximize the subscribers sharing your email marketing content, make sure you produce great content.

4.    Collect contact details offline: Brick and mortar retail outlets and tradeshows represent an amazing opportunity to collect contact details. An online retailer would not let a customer make a purchase and walk away without providing their email address – so why should a traditional retail operation? You’ll need to train your staff to take down the details correctly. Don’t forget to incentivize people to surrender this information.

5.    Build new list segments to find new value: I like to encourage email marketers to keep their messages short and to the point. Any secondary offers should be simple links, so as not to distract from the main purpose of the campaign which should be targeted and relevant. For example, if a fashion retailer has previously sold women’s fashion to a customer they should target that customer with similar products. However, if they click on an alternative offer (for example children’s fashion) – this can be tracked with your email marketing software and their name added to another list. This will mean that they receive more marketing emails from you, but you can be happy in the knowledge that all campaigns will be permission-based and relevant.

Source: iContact

Jobs the Movie

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Not sure how to start this post but this is supposed to be my review or reaction to the recent Jobs (or Steve Jobs) movie starring Ashton or I might say Chris Kutcher.

I am coming from a real fan’s stand point where #stevejobsismyhero and have probably watched Pirates of Silicon Valley, as well as read his book (biography).

After watching the movie my initial reaction was, is that it? What about NEXT, what about his new wife, what about how he came up with the iPhone? Is there a sequel?

This really isn’t intended to put too much heat on the most recent movie but just a reaction, a blog. At any rate, I did expect more from the movie, more from Ashton as well. There were moments that are brilliant, some others just plain “That 70’s Show” feel.

I would give the movie a 6/10 rating just because it is a Steve Jobs film. His ways in getting to his dream, and not stopping in pursuing what he deems is his is very brilliant in itself.

Turning Off Autocorrect on Skype

Has Skype been giving you problems lately? So you are typing in a multi-language conversation and suddenly words get changed and now it appears wrong. The thought is there but for sure it’s auto spelled incoorrectly.

Most likely you tried to turn this off but you couldn’t find how so you just gave up. It happened to me, and finally I found the right place to turn this off.

Go to EDIT >> SPELLING AND GRAMMAR

Then un-check all the options you want off.

Easy right?! But who figured it was on the EDIT menu and not on the main preferences!

Check out the official Skype post here

Google vs The Organic

It’s just interesting for me to review how Google is one by one trying to cut down the different and legitimate ways to organic search marketing. As if creating an algorithm in the first place was a mistake and now, they are trying to defunct it’s factors one by one with little or less than usual targeting which makes them very unpredictable, reasonable as they can say.

But the fact is, everyone knows that they are trying to kill something that they created in the first place – SEARCH. Ever since search has been quantifiable to money, it created an industry which was good at the time but now has blown into proportions that they cannot control.

These are my own observations and theories and for which dictates the directionality on how we need to move forward. Google is a giant, it can dictate and us small pieces of the puzzle would simply follow.

Google disguises these little steps in the form of the so called Panda, or Penguin.. But these steps pushes businesses farther and farther down the road to which at a certain point would be pointless to even consider.

To someone who has not started in the industry may not understand the things I am pertaining to which is alright since at any point in time, these are just conspiracy theories that the Ronin has.

I am The Ronin, and I have no master! I am learned in the arts of online marketing and Brazilian Jiu-jitsu, and this is my first post! Watch out for new and more informative, non-sense, inspirational, and some fictional that we will be publishing.

Always remember, life is not a destination, it’s a journey!

Recruiting has begun

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What a wild ride!

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  2. Donec pede justo, fringilla vel, aliquet nec, vulputate eget, arcu.
  3. In enim justo, rhoncus ut, imperdiet a, venenatis vitae, justo.

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A small gallery

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  • Nulla consequat massa quis enim.
  • Donec pede justo, fringilla vel, aliquet nec, vulputate eget, arcu.
  • In enim justo, rhoncus ut, imperdiet a, venenatis vitae, justo.
  • Nullam dictum felis eu pede mollis pretium. Integer tincidunt. Cras dapibus. Vivamus elementum semper nisi.

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A nice post

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Nulla consequat massa quis enim. Donec pede justo, fringilla vel, aliquet nec, vulputate eget, arcu. In enim justo, rhoncus ut, imperdiet a, venenatis vitae, justo. Nullam dictum felis eu pede mollis pretium. Integer tincidunt. Cras dapibus. Vivamus elementum semper nisi. Aenean vulputate eleifend tellus. Aenean leo ligula, porttitor eu, consequat vitae, eleifend ac, enim.

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We have launched our website!

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Nulla consequat massa quis enim. Donec pede justo, fringilla vel, aliquet nec, vulputate eget, arcu. In enim justo, rhoncus ut, imperdiet a, venenatis vitae, justo. Nullam dictum felis eu pede mollis pretium. Integer tincidunt. Cras dapibus. Vivamus elementum semper nisi. Aenean vulputate eleifend tellus. Aenean leo ligula, porttitor eu, consequat vitae, eleifend ac, enim.

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