citizen media - Citizen Media - the Future of Internet Marketing
by Chris Malta
What is Bookmarking?
Social bookmarking sites enable you to save your bookmarks online, rather than on your browser, and share them with other users interested in similar subjects. Besides viewing the content you post, other users can repost it on their own sites, with a link leading back to your site. This independent, user-generated content has become known on the 'Net as "citizen-" or "participatory-media".
You can post original articles, blogs, music, product reviews, recipes, photos, podcasts, videos, and more. Setting up accounts with any bookmarking site is free, although certain sites work best for circulating certain content mediums:
- Technorati.com, Digg.com, IceRocket.com — general bookmarking
- Video.Google.com, YouTube.com — video submission
- Flickr.com, Buzznet.com—photo submission
Tags are essentially keywords that let you organize your posts. Similar to optimizing your web pages around specific keywords, you're tagging your posts to make them easy for users to find. Under a given tag, the most recent posts get top positioning, so staying ahead requires regular posting.
As with SEO, you're not looking for high-traffic keywords that you can't consistently rank well for. You want words further down the proverbial market tail, with steady, moderate traffic. If you can dominate numerous 'long-tail' words, all that traffic will really add up.
And narrower keywords tend to produce more targeted, higher-quality traffic.
Using multiple tags is typically to your advantage — but don't overdo it, or your posts will be counted as spam. Although Technorati has a limit of twenty tags per post, it's best to hold yourself to ten unless your contribution is at least several hundred words. All tags should be relevant to your post because using popular, but unrelated words will get you banned from any bookmarking directory.
Why Do I Need This?
Bookmarking is beginning to achieve widespread acceptance, and its potential to direct online traffic will only increase. A few of the benefits include:
- Gaining back links.
- Increasing your traffic.
- Improving your search engine positioning.
Every post you make includes a back link to your site from the bookmarking site itself, as well as from any other sites that repost your content. Bookmarking sites let you set up multiple accounts, so if you have several eCommerce stores that appeal to different target audiences, your back links won't cross over and end up hurting you.
These directories all have millions and millions of visitors. If you can dominate your tags, you can gain an enormous amount of exposure to very relevant, focused traffic.
Search engines, particularly Google, love incoming back links. And due to the enormous amount of traffic bookmarking sites garner, the search engines assign even more importance to back links that come from them.