Thursday, April 5, 2012

Have you been to Wikipedia yet?

Wikipedia is great for SEO. Seriously. This isn't exactly a secret, but it's handy info if you're new to online B2B marketing. The site pops high on Google, and it's relatively easy to seed a link there back to your corporate website or blog. And as you monitor your web analytics later, you'll see that Wikipedia is actually good for some direct traffic, too. Here's what you need to know:



1. Not a sure thing: don't be fooled. Yes, anyone can contribute to Wikipedia. But, that doesn't mean your post will survive. Moderators and editors will yank it down quickly if they feel the content is promotional. To make matters worse, they aren't good judges. I posted a link on Wikipedia to a corporate blog post I'd written ... that was covered by the likes of the FT and WSJ. So, it was a legitimate news story. And, I played it straight: there was nothing promotional in the post. Unfortunately, it didn't stay up, despite repeated efforts to get it there and explain my position to the moderator.

2. The easy win: is there a Wikipedia article about your company? If so, that's a great place to put a link to your site or blog. If not, write a post, even a short one, and use that as a way to get your link up. The odds of being rejected tend to be lower (at least in my experience).

3. Lather, rinse, repeat: don't just post your link to one Wikipedia article. Find other posts where some of your content can be used as a footnote, either to support existing content or additional content that you produce. This gives you a good reason to supply a link, and by spreading  it around, you can handle being booted by some of the moderators.


4. About the traffic: you'll get traffic in two ways. The first is through searches. Since Wikipedia has a high ranking, the link back will work wonders for you. The other route is directly from Wikipedia. You may be tempted to dismiss these views as worthless. After all, what "real" professional goes to Wikipedia for information? Fall into this trap, and you miss something important.

5. The dynamic: someone in your target market does a search  on a keyword relevant to your company. Wikipedia pops at the top of the results page, so the user clicks in. From the article on Wikipedia, he or she clicks over to your site.

Wikipedia is useful and easy to use. As you're starting your online marketing program, don't neglect this important tool. It can send high-quality leads right into your funnel!

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