Welcome to Webbiquity! What exactly is that? Briefly, Webbiquity, or web presence optimization (WPO for those who prefer TLA’s), is the fusion of SEO, social media, interactive PR, online reputation management and other disciplines to make an individual or organization ubiquitous on the web for their name/brand and unique descriptive phrase. If SEO is about getting your website onto page one of Google, WPO is about owning that page.
For example, Jill Konrath is webbiqitous for the phrase “selling to big companies,” holding all 10 spots on the front page of Google for that phrase. The results include her website, blog, a link to her book of that title on Amazon, and articles she’s written. Ardath Albee is almost as dominant for her unique phrase, “marketing interactions,” placing in 7 of the top 12 spots on Google, including the top four. And if you Google “sales management thought leader” in quotes, six of the top ten spots belong to the same sales leadership guru. Interestingly, a Google search for “world’s largest online bookstore” doesn’t display the most obvious result anywhere on page one. Maybe a company with $300 billion in sales and a $20 billion annual marketing budget doesn’t need webbiquity, but smaller enterprises without Super Bowl-size advertising budgets can certainly benefit from it.
From a historical perspective, the web a decade ago (or even a bit less) was still primarily a broadcast medium with limited inactivity. Although in theory anyone could own a website even then, the web presence of most commercial organizations was limited to their own websites and whatever had been written about them by professional publishers and analysts, plus a few directory listings. The last few years have, of course, seen the emergence of social media and an explosion of user-generated content. A company’s website is now only one of myriad places where customers, buyers and other interested parties can find information about it.
This new environment has created the conditions for web presence optimization: using all of the tools now available to make a company as “findable” as possible not only for branded searches but also for key phrases that uniquely describe the enterprise and its offerings. Using these tools properly means not only dominating search, but also presenting a clear and consistent message across channels, wherever buyers or industry influencers may find you.
Specifically, web presence optimization is about achieving webbiquity using the tools show in this diagram, including social networking, social bookmarking, blogging, interactive PR, video and content marketing to disseminate the company’s message as broadly as possible. Just as importantly, companies need to maximize the search value of these different tools and platforms by taking advantage of the linking and cross-linking opportunities they provide.
So, for example, social media releases–part of interactive PR efforts–point readers to company microsites and its media sharing (images, video, presentations etc.). Media sharing accounts are connected to Twitter, which is also used to promote content marketing. Reputation management sites point the organization’s Twitter account as well as social networking profiles. And everything links back the enterprise’s website and blog.
The end result is that when customers, prospects and influencers (bloggers, journalists, analysts etc.) are looking for information on your industry, they find you everywhere. Your story and messages are bolstered by your webbiquity. You have the opportunity to become a valued resource in your industry. Further, the interactions you have with these various constituencies across social networking and other media platforms demonstrate that your people aren’t just smart, they are also helpful and responsive.
This is obviously a high-level view of the elements of webbiquity. Future posts here will delve more deeply into the tools and tactics that can help you and your company “be everywhere online” for your brand and industry discussions.