What’s New With Social Media Marketing?

Search Engine Marketing is part of a bigger web ecosystem. At West 2009, three habitués of the social media scene shared tips on successfully promoting a website using social media.

Moderator: Sara Holoubek, Consultant, Columnist and SEMPO Board of Directors



Brent Csutoras describes the user-generated news site reddit. When logged in, the front page is dashboard of reddits. You can create your own social media site using a CNAME sub domain name and the Reddit platform. (Add a CNAME record aliasing your domain to rhs.reddit.com. Enter this new domain, e.g. social.antezeta.com, in the domain field when you create a new reddit. – Sean)


Not much has changed, nor will it. A recommendation engine came out a few months ago. Digg’s recent funding requires they become profit positive. Consequently, development of new functionality is stalled.

Join the banned club

Social sites have all started to ban and users who “abuse” the system. (I know something about this and digg, sigh. For Digg, SEO is a four letter word – Sean).


Stumbleupon is moving away from their toolbar. Look at the beta system (not the beta toolbar – Sean). Stumbleupon has grown a lot lately. It is a good way to get the ball rolling. Stumbleupon has a new partner program in closed testing.

Yahoo! Buzz

Buzz is now featuring 3rd party sites on Yahoo! – Corporate level only.

wykop is a Polish social media site – in one case it sent more traffic than digg. Don’t ignore foreign sites. They build authority as well.

Piggyback distribution

Gab Goldenberg wants to provide tips on how to gain from social media without investing too much time. Notes that Seth Godin got his start at Fast company. Robert Scoble at Microsoft. Gab describes piggyback distribution – write for others who already have a solid reputation while building your own brand. Discusses some of the brand sites he has produced content for.

Feed syndication

Portals 2.0 are sites producing services that need your content, such as that provided through rss readers default feeds, eg. bloglines. Some countries, e.g. the Netherlands, have “Start pages“, personalized portal pages. Try to get yourself in as a default feed. Alltop.com is a feed directory which provides targeted traffic.

Specialized browser toolbars can provide both a opportunity and drive traffic.

Advertising in Social Media

It is important to understand what social people want. Stumbleupon ads had variable returns. Casino world example – create private rss feeds with unique content for affiliates which then get published on websites.

Permission marketing

When asking for permission to send e-mail, don’t forget an SMS text message opt in.

Use Quantcast demographics for a site as an input for Facebook ads. Linkerati – those more likely to link to you (OED entry in preparation!).

What are your social media goals?

Chris Bennett presents What’s new in Social Media. You need to start knowing your purpose: Links? Branding? Promotion? (This is true for (SEO/PPC) in general: define your objectives before worrying about keywords! – Sean).

The best way to get ideas is to research.

  1. Start with the URL such as in Digg.
  2. Search by keyword, such as in Reddit.
  3. See what is already working in your industry – Stumbleupon Business section can help.
  4. Look for niche sites in Google, searches for “women’s social site”.

Digg is not as good as a few years ago; it is no longer a golden goose but don’t ignore it. Shows infographics big “Fico Score” which turned obtuse data into a clear graphic. Reworking existing content can do a lot for you. An infographic is sexier than an economic stimulus blog post.

Get others to find your stuff on stumbleupon; they’ll submit it elsewhere. is a great place to post new content.

Good content is the starting point for successful social media.

If you follow @chrisbennett you can get info on new twitter tool release. The best stuff on social media is news (no longer “link bait”).

  • Q: Do social sites offer Google visibility?
    • Chris Bennett: social media will engage linkerati (it isn’t the direct traffic which is important)
    • Brent Csutoras notes panelists are very approachable – feel free to catch up with them after session
    • Twitter – target who you follow. Try offering free support via Twitter to build a brand, example @sugarrae and BBGeeks. Easytweets is a tool to find good twitter users. Mr. Tweet is another useful twitter tool.

SMX West Logo Disclaimer: this post aims to capture the essence of this session. It is based on the live twitter blogging I did while at SMX West 2009. It is not a word-for-word transcription nor necessarily complete. Use accordingly :-). If you found this interesting, I strongly suggest you attend a future SMX conference in person for the slides and a full 3-D experience!

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About Sean Carlos

Sean Carlos is a digital marketing consultant & teacher, assisting companies with their Search (SEO + SEA = SEM), Social Media & Digital Media Analytics strategies. Sean first worked with text indexing in 1990 in a project for the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Since then he worked for Hewlett-Packard Consulting and later as IT Manager of a real estate website before founding Antezeta in 2006. Sean is an official instructor of the Digital Analytics Association and collaborates with the Bocconi University. He is Chairman of the SMX Search and Social Media Conference, 12 & 13 November in Milan. He is also a co-author of the Treccani encyclopedic dictionary of computer science, ICT & digital media. Born in Providence, RI, USA, Sean received Honors in Physics from Bates College, Maine. He speaks English, Italian and German.

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