Sunday, December 14, 2014

Good Night, and Good Luck

To the students of COMJOUR 333:

Thank you!!!

I had a fantastic time working with you this past semester. It was a pleasure to work with all of you on your various multimedia projects and semester-long blog assignment.

Please have a safe and fun winter break! :)

- Brett

Sunday, December 7, 2014

WEEK FIFTEEN SUMMARY & OVERVIEW

SUMMARY:

For this week, we will:
  • How to monetize your reporting via Google AdSense and other display ad technologies 
  • Wrap up and discuss key accomplishments and learning outcomes from the semester

HOMEWORK:
  • Continue work on your final reporting assignment (video project) - due Dec. 11.
  • Begin work on your take-home final exam - due Dec. 16.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Monetizing your Blog with Google AdSense and Doubleclick for Publishers (Small Business)


https://www.google.com/adsense
GOOGLE ADSENSE

As the semester comes close to ending, many students may find interest in the topic of monetizing their content. This means that you can potentially make money from the work that you create!

To get started, you need to first have a Google AdSense account.



To learn more about Google AdSense, visit the AdSense Academy help pages or watch the various tutorial videos provided by Google.

ADDING ADSENSE


For Blogger:

If you have a Blogger account, getting set up with AdSense is easy. Watch this video for more info:





For Wordpress:

If you have a Wordpress account, watch this video to learn how to connect AdSense to it:



 

For Tumblr:

For Tumblr blogs, you can add AdSense using the instructions in this video:



 

AD SERVERS & AD NETWORKS
http://www.google.com/doubleclick/publishers/small-business/
Many journalists and content creators have websites that include advertising that originates from one of several ad networks. However, managing multiple competing ad networks might get complicated quickly. Ad servers, such as Doubleclick for Publishers (Small Business) help you centralize and manage the inventory of ads originating from the various competing ad networks so that you get the most value out of your advertising. It can also be used for scheduling, reporting and targeting of your various ad opportunities.

AN INTRODUCTION TO AD SERVING



Examples of ad networks that work with Doubleclick for Ad Publishers include:

 OVERVIEW OF DOUBLECLICK FOR PUBLISHERS (SMALL BUSINESS)



If your media property has fewer than 90 million impressions/month, then you qualify for the "Small Business" version of Doubleclick for Business.

Additional Resources:



Wednesday, December 3, 2014

WEEK FOURTEEN SUMMARY & OVERVIEW

SUMMARY:

For this week, we will:
  •  How to optimize our video productions for search engine discovery on YouTube and beyond
  • How to monetize your reporting via Google AdSense and other display ad technologies

HOMEWORK:
  • Continue work on your final reporting assignment (video project) - due Dec. 11.
  • Begin work on your take-home final exam - due Dec. 16.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) - Best Practices


Today in class we will look at ways to improve the search engine rankings of content in our original websites.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) refers to the practice of refining your Web site content so that it has better visibility in search engines, such as Google.

Search engines are the primary way that people discover Web content. In the U.S., Google accounts for a vast majority of search engine referrals. Thus, it is hugely important that your content be properly indexed so that new users can discover and explore your creations.

This three-minute video gives a great overview of what SEO is all about:



But, what about specifics? Here is a great "cheat sheet" on SEO from my colleague Rebecca Cooney, an assistant professor at WSU:
Wix also has some great tips that can be reviewed at:

It's All About Algorithm

A key aspect of search engine optimization is the algorithm that drives the decisions of how search engines "rank" and determine "relevancy" for each website. Here are some resources that help explain more about the ever-changing (and somewhat secretive!) algorithms... 

Ways to Increase Referrals


The following information addresses some of the "best practices" in SEO for websites. It is essentially divided into two areas: On-page elements and Off-page elements. The on-page elements are things that you can control on your site...they are located on the pages of your site. This includes the text/copy, images, URL paths and even the design choices you make for your site. The off-page elements are located elsewhere on the web. This includes third-party websites, such as news sites, blogs and link aggregation services.

On-Page Elements:
The following on-page elements should be reviewed for possible tweaking so that your content is better surfaced in search engines for referral.

Page Title
  • The page title appears in the top bar of your browser
  • For critical areas of your Web site, does the page title in your browser contain the proper wording?
URL
  • Does the Web site URL for key areas include text that would contribute to that page being indexed on critical keywords?
"Invisible" Page Content
  • Description Field text doesn't help rankings, but it does ultimately show up in the search listings
  • Keywords description fields
    • Less is more
      • No more than 5-10 keywords in your metatag
Off-Page Elements

Inbound links

  • Increase number of Web pages that link to you
    • Seen as "vote of confidence" for relevance of your site
    • Text in link is also important ("link anchor text")
  • Increase Google's "Page Rank"
    • More links on prominent sites will also increase your page ranking
Best Practices
  • Does your blog post title contain keywords that concisely capture the blog topic and are known to be relevant to your site?
  • The very first words should be the most relevant, if possible
    • Good Example: Second Life Tutorial: Customize your Avatar
    • Bad Example: Want a New Look for your Avatar?
      • In the above example, the words "Second Life Tutorial" will match to keyword searches for people looking for second life tutorials. Further, the inclusion of "customize" and "avatar" will likely help this post show up higher in search results for people looking for help in avatar customization.
       
  • To see an example of this in action, do a Google Search on the words: Second Life CEO
    • Notice how most of the top results have "CEO" in the first few words of the title
  • Would your blog post title make sense if it were displayed "out of context" via a RSS feed or on a third-party Web site, such as Digg or Facebook?
    • Each post has the potential to be surfaced on third-party sites. Your headline should be constructed so that it compels someone to click on it.
  • Are there opportunities to mix in blog posts that are not time-sensitive?
    • Many blog posts will clearly be connected to a new and timely announcement or development. However, when appropriate, you might want to strategically develop topics that speak to "evergreen" topics that have a longer shelf life.
  • Consider organizing your narrative with sub-headers and integrating occasional use of bold text and lists.
    • These are believed to be minor factors in the algorithm that Google uses in determining relevance.
  • If appropriate, include links to previous related blog posts within the text of your new post.
    • Interlinking increases the odds that your posts will be indexed at a higher level, according to many SEO experts.

Share Links and Network Badges

According to many SEO experts, blogs can play a key role in helping one's overall search rankings. In the case of Google's algorithm, the "newness" and frequency of posts contribute to the perceived "relevance" of a site. However, the key is to get other blogs and sites to link directly to your blog. An increase in third party referral links results in an increased "relevance" for your site.

As expected, a new blog post typically gets a burst of traffic immediately after it is published. In most cases, the traffic declines dramatically after a day or two. However, in some cases, a blog post that is not timely might continue to drive traffic to your site long after its initial publication. This is particularly true if the post is not time-sensitive and becomes indexed and related to key terms by search engines.
  • Are you pro-actively encouraging other sites to link to your post? What third-party sites should you strategically target as significant potential recipients of your blog post?
    • Digg, Reddit and Facebook are among those social networking/aggregation sites that may help generate links to our site.
    • If you feel that the theme of your post has significance outside of our own site, then submit it! Common sense rules here, but some examples include:
      • Digg.com (submit URL here - requires registration)
      • Reddit.com (Submit URL here - requires registration)
  • Do you have a Facebook Like button on your post?
    • Make it easy for people to link to and share your info.
      • Facebook has code that allows you to add a "Like"button here

Research Links

HubSpot has some great tips on getting the most of paid search listings:
Other useful links: