Comparative Advertising in Naming, Linking, and Tagging

Comparative Advertising Through Obscure Naming:

If I soft launch something sometimes I give it a name that is kinda keyword rich and spammy, to inspire a few descriptive links. After I lock in a few of those I may change the name to something that sounds more brand friendly.

When I launched my keyword research tool initially I wrote the page title as something weird like Yahoo & Google Keyword Suggestion Tool. At the same time I made the page heading something like Free Google and Overture Search Term Keyword Suggestion Tool

By giving it various long obscure names like that it did the following:

  • allowed me to get a few natural citations with great anchor text

  • ensured other people who linked at the tool mixed up their anchor text, since it was sorta like a tool without a name (I have lots of links with words like Google, Yahoo!, Overture, free, keyword, research, suggestion, analysis, tool)
  • that wide array of anchor text makes it easy for that page to be relevant for many search queries
  • by making it hard to reference by any sort of official name it probably made some word of mouth mentions include my traditional site brand name, which is what I eventually changed the tool name to, but only after it got a few mentions

Please note that the semi official naming idea works best if you:

  • have something that is exceptional viral (good enough to spread in spite of the bad name); or

  • have a large readership and/or great brand equity (have a general brand name that people can fall back on and use to reference)

How you name things greatly determines how people will link at it.

BTW, I recently created a search box you can put on your site if you want to use the SEO Book Keyword Research Tool from your site. Here is an example search box:

Keyword Suggestions for:

By Aaron Wall's SEO Book

and the code is here.

Comparative Advertising in Linking:

I do not think there have been any legal cases involving using someone else's brand as anchor text to market your own site, but I wonder if one day there will be.

Also if a competing product or service has negative reviews you could help do a bit of behind the scenes link building for their negative reviews. If they place too much focus on trying to wipe away the negative reviews on their core brand terms odds are pretty good that they may short sell some of their other marketing opportunities.

Comparative Advertising in Layout:

My site content hopefully is of quality and informative, but the layout is also designed to show my relevant mini ad for just about any visitor who finds my site.

Comparison Advertising on Pay Per Click Search Engines:

Perhaps illegal in some areas or disallowed on certain engines you have to consider the potential down sides and up sides of bidding against competing brands.

Comparative Advertising in Tagging:

If your site is new it may be hard to rank for someone else's brand, but if you can spin a story against an established brand sometimes ranking is easier than you might expect. It may look tacky to tag your own posts, so have a friend submit your post to Digg with a "Better than competing brand!!!" in the page title. When Performancing stats launched someone did that.

Now when anyone searches for Google Analytics on Google you find that Performancing marketing did a damn near perfect job.

Published: April 3, 2006 by Aaron Wall in marketing


April 5, 2006 - 4:20pm

Talking of social bookmarks, probably those with sites that get visited by a large number of people using SB services can benefit from attaching a script that rotates a few different titles that are passed to the SB service of a user's choice to that service's button/link... I wish I could code...

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