Job Seeker’s List of Top 25 Social Media Networks

The Chicago Sun-Times published this deansguide article 2-10-09

FoxBusiness.com published this deansguide article 2-10-09

In the first article in this series aimed at helping job seekers and entrepreneurs, I chronicled how not to organize your work day. I then provided a template for how to organize your day in the world of social media. The response has been overwhelming. People are demanding a list of the best social media sites aka social media networks available today.

The following is a list of the top 25 social media “networks” as ranked by traffic (visits per month) in a great retrospective article by Andy Kazeniac of Compete.com “Social Networks: Facebook Takes Over the Top Spot, Twitter Climbs.” This is a retro look at Andy’s original ranking of the Top 25 last year.  Note: Twitter came in at #22 on that list–look at them today.

Top 25 Social Media Networks:

Courtesy of Compete.com:

Analysis:

If you are a job seeker you should be concentrating your efforts on establishing a strong presence on #5 Linkedin.com and #3 Twitter.com. Although Facebook.com is #1, it has more cache for entrepreneurs looking to capture audience for a product or service.

DrudgeReport.com: Proof Outbound Link Strategy Keeps Readers Coming Back

Reuters.com published this deansguide article September 19, 2008

Scott Karp author of the blog Publishing 2.0 wrote a eye opening and somewhat startling report about the uber news site the drudgereport.com. In his article he is able to debunk aka discredit two major assumptions being pushed forward by marketing guru’s, website “experts”, and bloggers everyday: You should never send readers away from your news site by linking to third party content. Since we as bloggers are trying to deliver huge value, news, and new tips, the following is very important in your strategy.

Assumption #1

“You shouldn’t send people away or else they won’t come back to your site.”

Assumption #2

“A page with links that sends people away has low engagement, which doesn’t serve advertisers well.”

As Scott states, I support his statement 100%,: “But if you actually look at the data, both of these assumptions are completely wrong.”

Newspaper Association of America: Top 30 News Sites Ranked by Sessions per Person (May 2008)

Top News sites Ranked by Time per Person: Source CyberJournalist.net

The Results: Just the Facts

1. The top site has 2x as many sessions per person

2. The top site has almost twice as much time spent per person

Biggest Take Away of All

According to Scott and his logic is clearly supported here: But the most important difference between the top site and all the other sites, is that this top site — Drudge — has nothing but LINKS.”

That’s right folks the Drudge Report is essentially a giant blog built on links to other sites with a little content thrown in for direction. Drudge beats every fresh content news site by a 2 to 1 margin.

Analysis

More SEO gurus around the country are beginning to rethink the idea that fresh content is no longer king. Content in many ways is still king. What is important to understand is that it is better to send your readers away IF you provide them such great value that they will return to your site as a starting point for the quest for answers to their questions.

Note: Realtors need to understand that they can link to more successful agents, bigger companies, and experts in the field without fear of losing their readership–if they are providing great content even if it is pointing to other bloggers.

Scott’s Update to Objectors

Commenter’s objection “Drudge’s session numbers are worthless. Unlike every site on the list, Drudge has an artificially high auto-refresh rate of something under 3 minutes, I think it might even be as low as 2 minutes. The conclusions are fairly obvious– every person who leaves Drudge’s page open in a new tab, or leaves their desk for lunch created dozens or even hundreds of “new” sessions.”

Scott’s Retort

“I find it ironic that most of these commenters came here from Techmeme, a site that has nothing but links and that auto-refreshes. Techmeme, like Drudge, is INDISPENSIBLE for its users, something any news site should want to claim. And Techmeme has found the key to unlokcing value for advertisiers (hint: it’s not display ads) — sponsorships in the form of content links, just like Techeme’s editorial content.

And really, what news site wouldn’t want to be open in a reader’s browser being refreshed all day, instead of hoping for drive-by referrals from aggregators?”

In my opinion, there is almost always a hidden agenda or motivation behind many objections. Before analyzing and supporting objections, it’s always best to understand who benefits and why. I believe Scott did a fantastic job here.

Is Your SEO “Expert” Really An SEO Expert: 3 Keys To Verify Their Substance Factor

I am no SEO expert, no marketing expert, and no blogging expert but I do have expertise in all of these categories. In my travels around the SF Bay Area I attend upwards of 10 networking meetings or keynote events per month.

The hot topic is Web 2.0 SEO aka How to drive traffic to your site.

Unfortunately time and time again when I do my due diligence on the speaker’s background, their substance factor, and how their blog or websites rank I have recently been surprised by the results. Many speakers are knowingly misrepresenting themselves in regard to their credentials. Often times these speakers are leveraging their business accomplishments in other categories, unrelated to SEO or Web 2.0, as a means to securing these speaking “gigs.”

Cost

Simply put the average networking event keynote speech here in the Bay Area runs anywhere from $30-$65 per event. That adds up quickly and is of great concern when I am choosing events to attend

3 Key Factors To Check

When an “expert” claims they are going to speak about methods to increase your site’s traffic, Google rankings, and add links to your site you MUST perform some background checking if you want to understand if the speaker can deliver on his/her claims

#1 Alexa.com: Alexa.com (free service) remains one of the easiest, most telling sites in measuring traffic (page views and unique visitors) to a site either website or blog. Go to Alexa and input the url of your “expert’s site” for instant rankings. Alexa will return Global traffic, US rankings, and a mix of page view and unique visitor numbers.

Note: If an expert claims to be able to make your traffic “explode” then they better have an Alexa ranking of UNDER 1,000,000 at the very least.

Note 2: Alexa.com like any other measurement tool can not capture all web traffic. It is best to combine other traffic measurement tools with Alexa for a solid idea of a site’s traffic. Try Quantcast too

In my last two due diligence investigations on SEO “expert” speakers the first one came back with an Alexa ranking of over 19million which equates to about 10-20 visitors per day to their site. The second guy had a ranking in the 6million range which might provide 30 visitors per day

#2 Technorati: Links are considered the measurement of a site’s Google authority and a big part of the SEO formula. If you go to technorati.com (free tool) you can input the url and check on the number of hyper links which are coming into your “experts” site. If your expert has fewer than 10 links and they are old–he probably isn’t writing a worthwhile blog or he is not writing with consistency

#3 Evaluate their site: Do they write a blog? How often do they write per week? What is the date of the last blog post? Do they have a blogroll? Do they have widgets like mybloglog directory on their sidebar? Does the platform look dated? Do you like the way their sites looks?

Hits Myth

If your “expert” begins to speak about “hits” you might just want to bail. The term hits, although that is the only traffic measurement widget offered on wordpress blogs, is out dated and misleading. Hits can refer to any visitor who arrives at your site, clicks on any pictures, articles, or other documents. Each item is tallied as a hit.

You want to understand how many page views your expert’s blog-website receives; how many UNIQUE visitors, and their over all traffic ranking

Remember

If the “expert’s” site does not measure up in these 3 critical ways then how can the expert teach others how to increase their traffic and SEO power?