Archive for December, 2011

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The Significant Effects of Social Media Today

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The Social Media Effect ~

How have social networks and the short bursts of information affect today’s typical user? Some would say in a potentially negative way. The average attention span is now down to 5 seconds (!), which means that some of you will quit reading right about…..NOW. That’s a pretty unbelievable number, especially when considering that 10 years ago that number was a full 12 minutes, according to the recently published infographic down below. What do the think the quality of understanding and depth of thought can be conveyed in 5 seconds?

Mult-tasking is also increasing greatly. The average white collar (computer) worker checks their email 30-40 times AN HOUR. That is another staggering number. How do you think this constant stream of information is affecting today’s worker? Do you think this multi-tasking is helpful…or distracting?

Young people are also becoming alarmingly self centered. A recent survey found that 57% of young people feel that social media is primarily used for self promotion and to generate attention to one’s self.

Even though we do actually help companies with their social media when appropriate, these are all reasons (are more described below) that we at Hat Trick Associates advocate using SEO – your website content – as your primary means of communication. You can write as much as you wish, and provide real insight into your industry or field…far more than constant 140 character updates. Give your customers and potential ones something that the competition isn’t.

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SEO & Web Content Marketing vs. Other Options

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Click here to see a very interesting chart showing where companies spend their online marketing dollars, on average, in 2011..

As expected, Business to Consumer (think “retail” companies for the most part) spend more on Pay per Click (PPC). The ROI numbers may absolutely justify this, but they should remember…PPC ends the minute you stop paying for it, SEO based on quality web content lasts forever!

But a couple other questions arise:

1) Who are the 16.3% and 8% of companies that spend nothing on any of these categories? (It does make sense for a number of companies, such as small one-man shops, or folks who get gov’t contract work, etc.)

2) Is social media a productive use of dollars for all of these companies? For some products, services and industries, spending $$ on social network marketing is more about ego than it is about real ROI…there are just some companies that no one wants to connect to, regardless (think “funeral homes”, HA).

The takeaway is that for most companies – regardless of what they sell or service they provide – should be allocating some of their marketing dollars on building up their website, writing and sharing articles on their industry, and distributing other quality web content on the web. Soon the yellow pages and even online directories will be completely replaced by Google or other search engine inquiries.

Will your potential customers find you, or just your competition?


We can provide you with a SEO-focused, web content plan with our recommendations for free, whether you decide to use our writing services or not. Contact us today to learn more.

2 of the Best (and Easiest) Types Of SEO-Focused Content

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There are a number of different techniques that you can use to create content that goes “viral”, or is shared across many mediums to many audiences. This is what we are all hoping for right? To gain better SEO value for what we create on the web, and to spread our message to many different potential customers, clients, donors or contributors. Here are two opposing techniques you might want to consider…

The Manifesto

The Manifesto is the web content equivalent of “preaching to the choir”. Write a passionate, eloquent, or well-researched argument that your niche will wholeheartedly agree with. Since you’ve already got an army of believers who agree with you, they’re already primed and ready to share your argument.

Such As: “Why I’m a Vegetarian, Dammit” an essay that was posted on a vegetarian recipe blog,  received over 14,000 mentions within StumbleUpon (one of the second tier social bookmarking sites) alone.

The Controversy

The opposite of the Manifesto, the Controversy is all about stirring up some dissent in your niche. Write a well-written rebuttal to another argument, challenge a popular opinion, or spark a controversial discussion and watch the reader comments fly.

Such As: Warren Buffet wrote an August 2011 op-ed piece in the New York Times that was titled Stop Coddling the Super-Rich. It straddled the line between a manifesto and controversy: it went against everything we expect the super-rich to argue, true, but it was also something the general public agreed with. As a result, the controversial-but-popular article landed the NYT a ton of coverage and shares.

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