Have you ever searched your name on Google? If not, have you searched your favorite celebrity? Chances are you have, and what you may uncover is not always good. For example, my latest search of my favorite actor (Brad Pitt) brought up a whole host of articles about his relationship with Jen. Unless they’re hoping to profit off the old breakup story forever, Pitt’s PR team likely wants the ranking of those articles lowered.
During the past few years, Google has made multiple algorithm updates nicknamed Panda, Penguin, Hummingbird and, most recently, Pigeon. While these algorithms change the way paid SEO firms must operate, they do not significantly change the best practices. There are still ways that you can raise positive content or bury the not-so-pleasant articles about your product shortfall, or latest breakup!
Here are some tips to help raise the good content and hide the bad:
- Issue a press release: Increase the number of press releases on the wire. While we don’t always encourage extra press releases, if you are not issuing at least one a month this is a simple solution to increase rankings.
- Comment on news articles: Results coming from a domain like The New York Times are considered very credible by Google. While this doesn’t necessarily have the same impact as coverage in The New York Times, it’s better than negative articles.
- Optimize brand videos: YouTube is often considered the second largest search engine, and promoting images and videos can help push negative content down further. Some experts say Google ranks your YouTube content higher than pages from your own website. This article also highlights more reasons for why videos are awesome for search.
- Contribute content: Draft content for some of the most credible publications, such as Wired or Fast Company. To optimize reach you can also pay to promote, giving your content an extra boost.
- Sponsor content: We’d recommend considering sponsored content or paid ads. There are a whole host of publications, such as VentureBeat, that allow you to publish advertorials while ensuring that it’s contextually relevant, and then of course you could try mastering AdWords.
- Update/add online presence to search directories: Make sure directories, such as Crunchbase and BigSight are up to date with your latest messaging, as search engines consider these credible when it comes to your rankings.
- Increase owned content: Continue a strong cadence of publishing to your brand’s blog and social media profiles. Also, investigate ways to republish content on other platforms such as SlideShare, Vimeo or Storify.
- SEO consultant: If you have tried all of the above and want to try and fight Google’s algorithms, work with an SEO consultant to determine if your SEO is optimized appropriately.
What did you find when you searched your name or brand? Any other tips that have worked well for you? Let us know @BlancandOtus.