This editorial will appear in tomorrow’s print edition.
Page views, traffic, unique visitors – that’s the name of the game on the Web. The point is to hook people looking for what you’ve got by making sure their Google searches make a beeline to your site.
You’ve got to jump on what’s hot. Work the search terms du jour into your posts, your headlines, your tags. And here’s an idea: Work all the sizzling terms into a single post.
We’ll give this a try. Google tracks the most popular key words and lists them on various indexes. We discover there that “sarah palin” seems to be a big draw. There’s plain old “sarah palin,” “sarah palin newsweek cover,” “sarah palin sexist newsweek editor,” “sarah palin nice legs,” “sarah palin going rogue,” “next president you betcha,” “sarah palin liberals will jump off bridges” and many other permutations of the unusually strong palin brand.
Let’s make our fundamental marketing strategy clear here: Palin Palin Palin Palin Palin Palin Palin Palin Palin.
Another big one is “glenn beck.” In fact, those two words bring up more than 9 million hits on Google. And “glenn beck” is joined at the hip with “fox news,” which is another hot pair. It makes sense, then, that a post that combined “glenn beck,” “fox news” and “sarah palin” – as we just did – would bring a drove of their fans and foes this way, though we’re certain they’ll feel duped when they get here.
Google classifies certain search terms as “breakouts,” meaning they’re seeing a sudden, monster surge of interest. One of these is “carrie prejean” which comes up with “sex tape,” “erotic tape,” “sex, lies and videotape,” “I was not having sex” and other words that probably explain the heavy traffic. So we’ll throw “carrie prejean” into the stew to spice it up.
Obama is a constant biggie. Those five letters snag 40 million hits that include a lot of sober-sided verbiage, including “hosts Prime Minister Singh,” “presses China over rights” and “Nobel Prize.”
But you’ve also got “death panels,” “no birth certificate,” “secret Muslim,” “Manchurian candidate,” “hates white people” (that one from “glenn beck”). Obama seems to be all things to all men. Nothing linking him to “carrie prejean,” though, which is a mercy.
We follow the Puget Sound traffic closely, too, as you would imagine. A popular term in these parts is “bikini barista,” which usually connects to pages with photos. You come up with “Bikini baristas caught selling more than just coffee” (from “fox news”), discussions of “lascivious lattes” and – from Parkland – “Bikini barista throws boiling water on flasher,” an emasculating image if ever there was one.
So let’s try to pull all this together: “Fox News reports that Carrie Prejean denies working as bikini barista despite Glenn Beck’s claim that Barack Obama targeted Sarah Palin with Muslim death panel.”
Google fingers, come hither.