Link Wheels Can Help Improve Your Rankings

Link Wheels are a powerful digital marketing strategy that can dramatically improve your search engine rankings.  The basic concept is very simple.  Just look at this diagram to get an idea.


You don't have to use these exact Web 2.0 sites to create a link wheel, as any site where you can create content as well as links will work well.  You can use any amount of Web 2.0 sites in this technique.  The most you use, the more effective of a digital marketing strategy you have.  To increase the effectiveness of your wheels, create links to each site in them.  This will make sure they will all get indexed in search engines and pass link juice back to your main site.


Keyword Spinning

Keyword spinning is a very effective technique, often taught in digital marketing degree programs.  It involves rearranging the words in your title tags to be more SEO-efficient.

The first step is to use Google's Keyword Tool for some good keyword research.  After you have established which keywords you would like to target, take a look at your title tags.  Then, you reword your title tags (and anything else that applies) to match the new keywords.  You can also use Alexa to check your site's and your competition's traffic.  Use this data, along with yours and your competitions SERP's (Search Engine Results Page), to analyze how much you can expect traffic to improve.  Every month, compare your traffic with your competitors to see how you are improving.  You can keep spinning your keywords and building links to improve traffic.

Keyword spinning can be very effective if done right.  The key here is to continuously make improvements.  Small tweaks in your titles can have huge impacts on traffic.


Best Degrees in Digital Marketing

Digital marketing degree programs are hard to implement well.  The field is constantly evolving and digital marketing really requires practical knowledge and experience, rather than just understanding theory.  Since digital marketing is the fastest growing marketing field and can have a huge impact on business, I decided to put together a list of the best options of the available degrees in digital marketing.
  •  U of M - Dearborn
    • Pros
      • 4 year, BBA degree
      • Hands-on, experienced based approach
      • Many required digital marketing courses, including Digital Consumer Search & Marketing (MKT 363) and Digital Analytics and Content (MKT 463)
      • Small class sizes lead to good opportunity for internships and relationships with professors
      • Student projects include real world examples of ranking pages on Google
      • Teaches integrated marketing for full effect of digital marketing efforts
    • Cons
      • Brand new as of this semester
      • More expensive than some of the other options
    • Overview
      • Even though U of M - Dearborn's digital marketing degree program is brand new, it is a good option for students looking into digital marketing.  This program is well designed and teaches, in detail, about the various aspects of digital marketing.  Students will gain a deep understanding of digital marketing and where the field is going.  You can follow this marketing program on their Facebook page.
    • Pros
      • Self-paced and can be finished in one semester, if desired
      • Incorporates integrated marketing strageties
      • A total of six courses including Digital Strategy, Web Analytics, Search Engine Marketing, and three digital marketing based electives
      • Available on campus and online
    • Cons
      • Certificate, not a degree
      • Requires prior marketing experience or degree
    • Overview
      • This digital marketing program is the best option for students who already have prior marketing experience and are looking to enter the digital realm.  This certificate doesn't have the same internship opportunities as U of M - Dearborn's program, but students will get the same education.
  •  IE Business School
    • Pros
      • 13 month long course
      • MBA program
      • World renowned faculty members
      • Broken down into two periods, each of which have face-to-face time and online time
      • Study abroad in their Madrid campus
      • Students will partake in real life case studys
      • Visits to digital marketing agencies and companies help students gain a 360 degree view of digital marketing
      • Students will work on a project to launch a new digital marketing idea for a company
    • Cons
      • The traveling required for this course is expensive
      • The program is a Master's program, so a prior degree is required
      • Fairly selective on who is accepted into the program
    • Overview
      • This digital marketing degree program is one of the best available.  If you can afford to take 13 months off for intensive learning and traveling, this may be the best option for you.  Students will gain the same deep level of understanding as the other two programs with the fun experience of traveling and working with real digital marketing companies.  You can get a good look at the student experiences with their student blog.
So which one is best?  Well that depends on what you are looking for in the degree.  If you are looking to get a 4 year, BBA degree in digital marketing, U of M - Dearborn is the best option for you.  If you have experience in the marketing field, but a looking to gain quick access into digital, then the certificate at NYU is best.  If you are looking for a Master's program or studying abroad, then the IE Business School's digital marketing degree program is best for you.  Please note that U of M - Dearborn does have study abroad options, they just are not directly tied to digital marketing.


      Social Commerce

      Digital marketing degree programs will cover the recent topic of social commerce.  Social commerce is a subset of electronic commerce that involves using social media to assist in the buying and selling of products.  Since so many people use social media, it helps to reach a large audience.  Some examples of social commerce are user-generated content (such as reviews), social shopping tools, social apps, forums and advertising on social media platforms.

      Digital marketing degree programs also will cover the closely related topic of Facebook commerce, which is commerce through Facebook itself or through the Facebook Open Graph.


      Mobile Social Media users up 37%

      comScore, a company that measures the digital world, just release a report indicating that the amount of mobile social media users is growing significantly.  The increase is 37% in the past year.  This jump means that one third of mobile phone users are regularly using social media on their phones.  That presents an astounding opportunity for social media marketers.

      Facebook has now reached over 60 million mobile users.  Mobile users are very interactive with organizations and company sites.  If you do any social media marketing, make sure to keep this in mind.


      How To Stay Up-To-Date in Digital Marketing

      The basic principles of digital marketing remain fairly constant, however the game changes quite frequently.  Because of this, you will need to keep yourself informed so that you can change your strategy to match what the search engines are looking for.  Here's a few good places to bookmark so you can refer back to them to catch up with any changes that have been made.

      • Matt Cutts is an associate at Google and provides some basic insight to how things are and where they are going.  It's always a good idea to listen to him speak.  He never gives away any exact information about Google's search algorithm, but he gives some clues and insight to what Google expects.
      • SEOmoz is a great site to check out.  They provide accurate information about what experts feel is most important in search marketing.  They give all the different factors they think are important and give an approximation for their significance in your search marketing campaign.   This is probably the best resource out there for digital marketers to use.  SEOmoz provides easy to understand information.  Everyone behind the site is an expert in their field.


      Social Media Optimization

      Digital marketing degree programs will teach you that search engines will be emphasizing social media more and more because it is how people are using the internet.  These quick and easy steps will help you master the area of social media marketing and will help you rank first in search engines.

      1. Increase the link-ability of your site.
      2. Make tagging and social bookmarking easy by adding quick buttons.
      3. Add value with good content and be a resource to your users.
      4. Keep your valuable members close to your site by rewarding them.
      5. Participate by joining in on your social media conversations.
      6. Target your audience.
      7. Create valuable and unique content.  Remember, content is king.