Monday, January 15, 2007

News 2.0 = Newspapers + local + SEO

Many newspapers suffer today because their online content does not get much prominence in the Google-dominated search operating system.

Greg Linden says,
Newspapers have remarkable content on businesses and events in their communities. They should be the authoritative source for local. They should be the experts on their communities and reap the traffic from searchers seeking that expertise.

Advising Local newspapers to go one up on the bloggers, Greg says in another article,

Newspapers should be the broker for local content. Newspapers should be the master of news and advertising content for their communities. Newspapers should be the experts of local.

There is no doubt that newspapers possess great content. But is that content search friendly?

I agree with Rich and Greg. Rather than blame Google news and others aggregators for their problems, newspapers must take on the search engines at their own game.

While sites such as The New York Times hide most of their content behind a pay wall, many others like The Guardian have everything free and yet their content is regularly trumped by content from bloggers and properly SEOed content in SERPs.

Maybe Bloggers are better writers, or it may be that they use better tools.

There is money to be made. If newspapers do basic SEO stuff, Rich Skrenta says,

These would be very valuable pageviews to be getting. Adsense could do $10-30 CPM on these landings. Not to mention the value to the newspaper to hold on to a claim of authority for restaurant reviews in their area.

What can Newspapers do?

1. Train reporters and web teams to do SEO for all news content online, including the archive.

2. Social Media Marketing: Posting good stories immediately to social news sites and bokkmarking sites:,, Reddit, and so on...

3. Take a good look at your CMS. Does it provide basic features like Google-friendly page names, etc? I think the new news CMS must have the best features provided by blogging platforms.

4. Allow reporters to have blogs.


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