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Friday, June 22, 2007

Internet Marketing

This is the forum that I mentioned earlier had given me fits. I felt Tom Britt really knew his stuff and I was anxious to go to this forum. Perhaps if he had held questions until the end we could have gotten more out of this workshop. He does have a blog specifically geared to internet marketing and he has some interesting posts.

Probably the biggest thing I learned was the importance of meta tags. Meta tags are those incongruous, (seemingly) random keywords that alert web crawlers (spiders) what's inside your blog or website.

You might have heard about keyword bloggers who use certain keywords inside their posts to earn money. The whole purpose of keywords is to come up on search engines more often--and higher in the rankings.

My keywords are limited inside my website and nearly nonexistent on my blog. I don't play around enough on Blogger to know where to place these keywords without crashing the system around me. But it's one of those things I'm cognizant about and will work on reinforcing in the weeks to come.

Britt also spoke about bidding on keywords. Basically, every time someone keys in a particular word or name, you pay (Google or other search engine) for that hit. What it does is draw your link up in the search. One thing I didn't realize is that you can bid on a competitor's name or book, so that when people key in his name/title, it also brings yours up too. Very clever.

The other thing I thought was important was being able to collect email addresses from potential readers. He recommends adding the option of opting in, opting out and forwarding to others when you send people emails. I highly agree. I sign up for lots of newsletters and emails from experts and authors and I want the option of getting out if it turns out not to be what I expected.

The final thing he touched on was using Amazon's "Search inside the book" program or Google's book search program. For Amazon, there was 9% higher sales when using this option. This makes sense. Reviews have never swayed me to buy a book unless it was a recommendation from someone I knew. But I have bought books due in large part by viewing inside the book to see if I liked the writing and/or content.

I'd like to add more but that about covers what I got out of this panel. You can go to his blog and download the presentation, but that just covers his punch list.

Tomorrow: Agents discuss book contracts