Value, Experience & The New SEO
I'm having five related conversations across three social nets right now about  #contentmarketing  ,  #contentcuration  ,,  #SEO  and  #value  I want to put these conversations in one place. Since I see +Google+ as the KING OF CONVERSATION I'm sharing these interesting intertwined thoughts here.

+Robin Good was my primary content curation teacher and coach (probably more than he realizes). Robin has several core interests such as reviewing cool tech and being a strong advocate for a better user experience. 

Early on, when was in beta I shared a link without adding much value. Robin wrote me a note asking me if I meant to do that. He didn't say it was wrong, he just asked me,  given my more natural propensity to add rich snippets to my curation, if the posted link was a mistake.

It wasn't a mistake. I was tired and just wanted to push a link. Robin's gentle note reminded me WHY I share content - to share ideas and have conversations like this one :).

On the other side of the Rubicon is my friend and great  #Internetmarketer  +Brian Yanish. I've written about Brian's innovations before. His page has a PageRank of 6 and he has used's customization features to turn Marketing Hits on Scoopit into an effective landing page. This is a brilliant creation that anticipates the next much more loosely distributed web, a web based on the power of conversations more than "destination" websites.

Brian's Marketing Hits website has a lower PageRank than his landing page (PR4 for his site). Brian believes in the pass through and his site has 22,000 pages indexed.

Many of pages (and many of Brian's shares) are something Brian found interesting and the link (no value add). Brian is  #SEO  smart. He doesn't duplicate content (or not so much of it he would be in danger) so he gains the curatorial benefit of the themed content and the pagespread.

My note to Brian on Facebook noted that at 178 inbound links to 22,000 pages in Google his PR4 is a warning (or as close as Google gets). is an upside down castle with 22,000 pages resting on 178 confirming inbound links. I see Brian's upside down castle as dangerous as we move to a semantic web, a web of meaning and value.

As Google begins to understand context and idiom VALUE will become an increasingly important idea and parameter and this is where my conversation with +David Amerland comes in. David writes intelligently and well about "new value systems" and the  #semanticweb  . 

The reason Brian's Marketing Hits site has 178 inbound links is because pass through content doesn't generate the passion and loyalty (the experience) that generates inbound links. Blogs are poor inbound link collectors anyway so Brian is being hit twice.

Not ALL blogs have trouble with inbound links. Huffington Post sure doesn't have inbound link issues with 212,000 links coming in, 2M pages indexed and a PageRank of 8. HuffPost demonstrates how good live can be for scaled multi-author, multi-thread platforms. I wrote about just how good life is for this strategy recently on (Why There Is A Curatti In Our Future ( ).

MY Link Efficiency Index shows the mathematical danger. HuffPost has  2m pages indexed to 212,00 inbound links for a respectable LEI of .106 (so for every tenth of a page they get a confirming link). MarketingHits LEI is .008. LEI shows HuffPost is creating content supported by confirming links and social shares (helps to have an army of slaves working for you as HuffPost pays very few of their contributors but that is another debate).

My advice to Brian was to shore up his pagespead (# of pages in Google) with guest posts. New authors would link in their social nets and help shore up inbound links / pagespread (something I call Link Efficiency or LEI). I don't see pass throughs as a sustainbale strategy.

I could be wrong and Brian's point is the strategy is working NOW. I respect his point. I used to be a line manager of a large  #ecommerc  website. Line management, when your job and millions are on the line, is different.

Things that work TODAY must be valued. The coming semantic web may or may not happen in the way we think. I respect Brian's decision to use a tactic - pass throughs - that works now.

As a line manager I often fought a two front war where Sophie's Choices were common. Email made us the MOST money, so email frequency vs. list fatigue was a hotly debated topic. During 4Q mail frequency went way up. Fatigue stats, people leaving the list, never went about a tiny % but the aggregate effect of mailing more was list fatigue (a tiny % daily becomes a bigger number than a tiny % weekly).

David's idea is all of factors will align at some point in the not very distant future. Points such as:

* What makes money.
* The value of an experience NOW and over time.
* Value as a function of Uniqueness / Scarcity.
* The social REPUTATION and AUTHORITY of a brand or curator.

I don't see pass through links as a sustainable strategy and think the reasons are apparent in Brian's core SEO metrics where a high Index page count (22K) is being "confirmed" by a small number of links. Pass through strategy is strong on pagespread (adding pages into Google) and weak on the other (people feeling strong enough about the experience to support those pages with links). I understand Brain's thinking even as it worries me (for him).

This discussion was started by +Bryan Vartabedian. Dr. V complained about the number of pass through curators using He noted how much he hates to see a link in his twitter feed because experience of those links was LOW (not much value added). Bryan articulated the liability of the pass through tactic.

I think David is right. These ideas will line up at some point soon and what we value with links and social shares will win. Dr. V's complaint defines the liability of a strategy that works for the math but not the consumer as Robin reminded me that day long ago.

BTW, I know I talk too much sometimes (like now lol). I add "too much" value (lol). Friends try to help me be more "user friendly" and create more with less. I'm an old dog, but willing to learn new tricks. So I'm working on LEAN ideas too. Visual marketing's dominant trend means finding ways to get more value packed into the same message delivery time is an important idea.

So if you are still reading this post, obviously NOT one of my new leaner ones lol, then THANK YOU. If you comment Thank You two times and if you are Robin, Brian or David thanks three times as my life and content curation is better for knowing each of you :). Marty

Brian mentioned we should debate this topic and that sounds like a cool idea for a Hangout out On Air. I don't know how we could all get into the same time zone, but let me know if there is interest and time differences. I am Eastern Standard so I think David is 5 hours ahead. What about Canada BY? Rome Robin?
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