Found an interesting article about viral marketing and link baiting, which is a term I had not heard before. Viral marketing is something that I have been thinking a lot about lately as I try to not only provide content, but also to get people to actually see the content I have provided. Nothing worse then a good idea that no one knows about.
Basically, the two ideas are ways in which to use the new web – mainly web 2.0, community content driven sites – in order to introduce your site to the masses for free. Essentially, word of mouth advertising meets the web. The benefit is that it, hopefully, has a snowball effect. As people find out about your content and find value in it, they link to it from their sites, blogs, myspace’s, etc. This grows your linked-to rating, which helps in SEO, especially for Google.
The article also has a beginner’s guide to SEO. If you don’t know what SEO, Search Engine Optimization, is – it’s basically a way to get your side indexed, preferably indexed high, under the searches that your content matches. So when someone is looking for widget toolboxes and you have the site 1001widgettoolboxes.com then they can find your site easily. This is especially important for smaller businesses since they do not have the funds to use conventional advertising – tv, radio, newspapers – or to become a sponsored link for those searches – paying per click. It again goes back to word of mouth advertising on the web – and ask any salesmen, word of mouth advertising is the strongest kind.
So besides using CSS and good XHTML to design your site, you should also keep in mind what you need to add – keywords, metatags, etc – in order to give yourself the best chance of getting your content in front of your audience. And using sites like technorati, digg, slashdot, etc to create buzz is even better.
Random Tidbit: I can’t believe Boston is 7 games back of the Yankees. The Yankees have no pitching and usually when I can’t watch them, which I haven’t been able to lately, the Red Sox do well. At least the Pats are 2-1. Although having a good preseason is rarely a good thing. I don’t have any solid stats, but I remember hearing something along the lines of more 0-4 preseason teams have gone on to the Super Bowl then 4-0. Not sure what finishing 3-1 or 2-2 does for you. Time will tell.