Hey everyone, Ken Courtright here from Today’s Growth Growing Business Today, this is Episode 18. We are calling this one Model Success Leverage Google. Once again, Episode 18, Model Success Leverage Google. This is our first request podcast. The point of this episode is to model success, and the reason I came up with this episode is on some of the podcasts, I’ll leave my email, which is firstname.lastname@example.org if anyone has any questions or comments, and I had a number of people asking if I would go deeper on what is by far our most popular download which is called, How Google Ranks. That one is so popular actually that I think it went a little viral and caused us to move up the charts in new and newsworthy, for general business, and then business we hit row 1. I don’t know exactly how that works. We have yet to mail our list or do anything with these podcasts, it’s just pure viral, and it’s definitely being heard worldwide, which is kind of cool.
The number 1 download, How Google Ranks, I just skimmed the surface, and I think I teased people a little bit, and the requests are, can you go much deeper on exactly how Google ranks. I started putting this podcast together and I realized I can do such a better service if I could use some screenshots. I decided to do a video-cast along with this one, but I was thinking about the people that might be hearing this in a car, or maybe with some headphones on at work, and they can’t turn on a computer, or for whatever reason. I wanted to build it in a way that the audio alone could stand on it’s own. I wouldn’t lose anybody, everybody could completely follow with what’s going on, and tested it, it’s awesome.
However I got a funny feeling that a number of you that will hear this audio are still going to want to watch the few slides I rip through and a couple of websites that I show, and if that’s the case, I decided to put this screen cast on kencourtright.com, and that’s Ken Courtright like you went to court and you take a right.com. Under kencourtright.com do not click podcasts, you’re just going to hear the audio, click videos, and then somewhere on that page towards the top, it’s either going to say Episode 18, or the guys will title it, Model Success Leverage Google. I’m going to guess the video will say Model Success Leverage Google.
The reason I wanted to use screenshots is I figured there is no better way to teach than through case studies. Case studies are what my first book is all about, my new third book is all about. Case studies, although boring, quite frankly are electrifying because there’s no theory, it’s this is what we did, this is the result. Again, no theory, so I figured why not do a live case study at a site we’re working on right now, and expose the tools we’re using, the modeling we’re doing, what websites are we modeling, how did we find that information, and I just thought this is going to rock.
What we do is we hold a couple of events a year called Digital Footprint, and at Digital Footprint, which on December 27th Forbes just wrote us up saying we’re the top 5 must see, cannot miss, business conferences of 2016, and the reason is it’s 3 days in a row of case study after case study after case study of successful models. The name Digital Footprint means we are attacking an industry, or a business, we’re going to find a working model that’s 5 to 10 times bigger than us, and we’re going to create a digital footprint. How exactly did they get there? What websites did they build? How many links do they have? We basically build this map and we attack it, and so we expose for 3 days how do we build these digital footprints on our 680 revenue generating websites. What I’m going to do is I’m actually going to use the notes that I’m going to deliver on April 8, the Saturday, of our digital footprint coming up.
Let’s get cooking here. On my screen I have a starter slide, it says, Give A Man A Fish, Feed Him For A Day. Teach A Man To Fish, You Feed Him For A Lifetime. Create A Good Tutorial And He Can Teach Himself How To Fish. I’m thinking the best way that I could deliver how Google really works is to use a live case study that we’re doing on a website called wine.net, the site that we co-own, and it’s awesome. Let’s put some backdrop.
Is it important, and for some of us is it even urgent that we get our websites higher up in Google’s rankings. A lot of people, a lot of business owners, a lot of sharp business owners, they don’t even want to begin playing in the Google world because of the amount of expense it takes to compete, and I totally get that. Everything we teach is a 0 cost, we do everything for free or nearly free, but if you want to play on a much, much bigger scale, you could spend a ton of money trying to rank in Google, but I’m here to tell you, you do not have to, and we’re certainly going to show some case studies here that you don’t have to.
Let’s just talk about the power of rankings. If you are in the 10th spot on page 1 of Google, then if you can climb to 9, you’ll get double the traffic. If you can climb one more spot to 8 you’ll double your traffic again, and it works in reverse. If you’re the number 1 spot and you lose a spot in rankings, you’re going to lose half your traffic. It’s just how it goes, that hasn’t changed in 7 years. To put in perspective the power of Google’s rankings, I said in a prior episode that if you rank number 1 for the word real estate, or the word insurance, you will have more traffic to your website than if you owned every highway billboard on every highway billboard to and from Chicago on every highway. Again, if you got the space on every billboard to Chicago and from Chicago on every street and every highway, you would still have more traffic in any given day on your website and more visibility to your company if you occupied the number 1 spot on Google, that’s how much traffic comes into Google. It’s absolutely staggering.
Let’s review, I’m onto slide 2, How Google Ranks Are Stacked Today. Number 1, credibility. What you’re seeing on my screen for those of you that are just hearing the audio, it’s really simple, I have 3 boxes representing 3 websites. The first box says Credibility, and in the Credibility box right below it are 3 smaller boxes representing 3 smaller websites, and there’s arrows pointing up from the 3 small sites to the bigger site. Those arrows represent link backs, or back links, meaning this is an image representing a website at the top that’s getting listed up by the links from 3 other smaller websites pointing to their mentioning it. If you want further detail go to How Google Ranks and listen to that podcast. I do about 8 minutes on the back links.
The second image to the right, same website, same size, but in this case there’s 4 smaller sites below it with 4 smaller arrows pointing down, because popularity, which is number 2, link backs on number 1 is Credibility, the second way Google ranks is popularity and popularity says, do you have any sub pages, meaning content pages, or picture pages, or video pages, of your website that are actually getting grabbed from your website and shared into web 2.0 platforms, otherwise known as social media such as Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, things like that, that’s number 2. The more pages that move and get shared over and over by real people, the more plus 1 social signals you get, thus you get increased in rankings again.
The third thing on my screen says Author Equity, it’s a 3rd big website, and then right below it, it has 2 fancy signatures. Author Equity simply says, does Google view your signature, and this one happens to have an image of George Clooney, does Google recognize your signature either as a professional athlete, a big time writer on a news website, or maybe you’re just a small business owner, but you write for 10 to 20 other websites, or you’re a small business owner but you have the power to bring in other author equity signatures to write for your website. Either one works.
I’m going to focus the next 15 minutes on credibility, which means getting more back links to your site, and popularity, which means getting pages of your site moved virally into other websites. To do this, I’m going to use a couple of different tools, and the first tool that I’m going to use is called SEM rush. Right now I am going into semrush.com, and I’m going to type in wine.net, and I’m going to hit enter.
I’m logged in on the pro version. I think I pay $9 for this. You’re going to get exactly the same data in the free version, okay. Your screen is going to look a little bit different, don’t sweat it. If you want the screen to match mine, then pay the $9. We went a year on the free version, you don’t need it. For what I’m looking for, and again if you’re not on the pro version your screen looks a little different, but the information is the same. The first thing we want to do is we want to build a digital footprint of wine.net, a digital footprint, and we’re going to keep this very, very simple.
In this case the digital footprint we’re going to create is just a simple little almost Excel spreadsheet which is how many links are pointing to wine.net, and how many websites total. I’m going to look on the page somewhere for the word back links, here it is right here, back links. In my case it’s on the left, if you’re in the free version it’s going to be down at the bottom in the center of the page, but right now I’m clicking back links, and what’s popping up on my screen is it says, 67 total back links by 26 referring domains. I’m going to click 60, no, you know what, I’m going to click the referring domains, 26.
Making this digital footprint, what we’re going to do is we’re simply going to look at who are the 26 referring domains. What websites like tiewine.com, cherryhillwinery.com, cherryhillvinyard.com, californiawineryguide.com, et cetera, hallickvinyard.com, how many referring domains are pointing to wine.net? We’re looking at 26. Now what I want to do, I’ve got this established, I’m actually going to write this down, 26 from 67. Now, and I’ve already done this exercise about a half an hour ago, so I’m cheating, but I would then go back in and look for competition. I want to go back to overview, and now I want to look somewhere in here for any finding of the word competitors. There it is, competitors in organic search, there’s 208 of them, and what I’m looking for is the closest match, and listen very carefully how I do this, and how I say this, I’m looking for the closest match in referring domains that’s 10 to 50% bigger than us.
We have 26 referring domains, I’ve already gone through these, this is the closest match, it’s called cocktailsandjoints.com, joints meaning bars and taverns, and so what I want to do to do the digital footprint is I want to map what did this website do to deserve to be higher ranked than wine.net. I found if I go into back links, and again I did this exercise a half an hour before recording this, that they have 39 referring domains. Again it’s a perfect, it’s not too big, it’s not smaller it’s us, it’s something that we can chew on. They only have 13 more referring domains than we have.
I’m going to click the referring domains, there’s 39, and here we go. I can quickly discern from Marsha Frost to Wine and Spirits Travel, to Kitchen [Needo 00:12:15], oh yeah, definitely Tavistock Restaurants, I can see the angle that they were going for, and I kind of have an idea right now of what type of content I would need to create to get some of these websites to mention wine.net.
My goal looking at this is, I’m now, on my piece of paper I have 380 something forward slash 39, so my little miniature digital footprint here says my website, 26 referring domains, the one that’s slightly bigger than me that I want to replicate or model is cocktailsandjoints.com. I’m actually going to arrow back. The bottom line is I’ve got 26 referring domains to me, and I’ve got 39 going to cocktailsandjoints, so if I want to pass them, because they do outrank us in about 50 major terms, I know I’ve got to get 15 to 20 referring domains more, and then Google has no choice but to rank me higher than cocktailsandjoints.com. Why? Because Google is a computer, it is a program, it computes the number of links pointing to cocktailsandjoints, and it matches that compared to the number that point to wine.net, and relevant to the size of the links, it basically stacks us in the rankings on page 1, page 2, according to who has more credibility, meaning more links.
Now the first tool establishes the number. I now know I’m going head to head competing with cocktailsandjoints.com, that’s great. Now let’s go to the second tool, the second tool that we use often is called buzzsumo.com, buzzsumo.com, and I am inside it, and if you look on the left side, and for those of you just driving, on the left side, first of all buzzsumo is B-U-Z-Z-S-U-M-O.com, like a sumo wrestler, and buzzsumo tells the world what is the most viral pieces of content, what are the most viral pieces of content in any given industry, phrase or business over the last day, all the way back to a year. I have it sent to a year, and I now know based on my competition the type of phrase I want to look for is wine pairings, because I notice they were going after restaurants, cocktailsandjoints, and I want to find out what are the most viral pieces of content in the last 12 months in the world of wine pairings.
I’m staring right now at a number of them. The most viral piece of content going back a year is Girl Scout cookie wine pairings will save your life, Girl Scout cookie wine pairings will save your life. How do I know it’s the most viral? Because on the right side it said total number of shares on web 2.0 platforms, and you can see them here, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, et cetera, 408,000 shares on this single post, right. What we want to do once we have in front of us the most viral pieces of content is we want to ask a series of questions, and here they are.
Who wrote it? Why is it appealing? Who promoted it? Can it be replicated? Again, who wrote it, why is it appealing, who promoted it, and can it be replicated? Actually the third one, who promoted it, is probably the most important. Let’s look at it, who wrote it?
Kristen Hunt, so on my screen for those of you driving or listening, it says Girl Scout cookie wine pairings will save your life, and it says, thrilllist.com is the website it started on, and it says it was by Kristen Hunt, okay. This was written about a year ago, and sure enough I’ve got the author, the website, and the name of the article, Girl Scout cookie wine pairing, and there’s the article, so let’s look at this for a second, and then we’ll go back in.
It starts off with an image of 4 boxes of Girl Scout cookies, and then what looks like a Merlot or a Cabernet on the right, or the left, excuse me, and on the right side this could be anything, it could be Riesling, it could be Chardonnay, who knows, but below is an info graphic, and it says Girl Scout cookies and wine pairing, and it’s a graphic, it’s a cartoon that starts with shortbread on the left, and it compares it with sparkling wine and Chardonnay. [Dositos 00:16:14] I guess is a cookie with dessert wine or a semi sweet Riesling. [Samos 00:16:18] is basically sherry or champagne, and on and on and on, all the way down to thin mints you would drink Merlot of Pinot Noir.
Why did this go viral, right, why? In my opinion, if you’ve heard one of my previous episodes, I talk about the four C’s, things that go viral are either cool, cutting edge, controversial or comedic. This is definitely cool, and comedic. It’s funny, it’s cool, this is just awesome, it’s just awesome. This is a great piece of content.
Let’s go back into buzzsumo, and what we want to know is who wrote it, why is it appealing, we’ve got that. Who promoted it? Who promoted it? Well buzzsumo is awesome, it gives us a little button here that says view back links, so let’s click that. This is going to tell us who grabbed the article and promoted it to their audience, and it gives a lot of them, a lot of them.
Here’s the power of creating a digital footprint, this is absolutely why Forbes says our 3 day event, you can’t miss it, and I’m definitely plugging digital footprint because I believe in what we do. It’s a barn burner, we’ll blow your hair back. Check this out, we’re staring at a piece of content on buzzsumo that is showing us all the people that grabbed that first article by Kristen and then shared it with their followers, and it shows us right here that the biggest one is whoever wrote coolmompics.com wrote an article, Web Coolness, Pink Hot chocolate, Girl Scout Cookies and More, and 471 other people grabbed it from this lady. Right below that we see Carla Brown from KNX 97.3 shared it. You see Jean Marie from iHeart shared it, Yvonne from the Daily Scene shared it, I mean this is incredible.
How does my company use this type of data? Number 1, who wrote it? Kristen wrote it. Why is it appealing? Because it hits 2 of the 4 c’s. Who promoted it? We’re staring at a screen that is showing us who promoted it. Now the question of the day, the finish, the exclamation point is this, can this piece of content be replicated? There’s no point in putting a digital footprint together if we can’t replicate the model. If I want to go back and get more back links, I’ve got to create a piece of content that people will want to grab and share and link back to, because this thing starts on thrilllist, people then grab it, move it to their audience, and other people link back to it when they grab it.
We have to create something that can be shared, that people would want to share. Then we ask ourselves when creating a digital footprint, can this be replicated? I think it can. What about wine with cupcakes? What about wine with cakes? How about wines with chocolates? How about wine with regular cookies? We could replicate this so many different ways.
Here’s what we will do, and we will do this in our company with wine.net, we’re going to create info graphics that are near identical to this, and then we’re going to go over here and we’re literally going to email the lady from coolmompics. Why? Because she moved something very similar virally. Then we’re going to email Carla Brown from KNX 97 and say, “Hey Carla, would you review this? What do you think of this? Then we’re going to email Jean Marie from iHeart. Why? Because we already know they thought it was really cool a year ago with wine and Girl Scout cookies.
They’re probably going to think what we create is really cool too, and they’ll probably share it with all their crazy fans and followers, and then guess what? All those crazy fans and followers are going to come over and check out wine.net, and guess what? We’re going to get a whole new audience of people that are going to check out wine.net and I guarantee you, and it happens 100% of the time, a percentage of them are going to save us to favorites, bookmark us, and come back to wine.net once a week and see what else is new, because it’s a similar like minded audience, does that make sense guys?
What we’ve done here is a couple-fold. Number 1, we created a digital footprint. We went into wine.net and said what is the chemical makeup? We know it’s 67 links from 26 different places, that’s the chemical makeup, the gut. Who is a little bit bigger than us? Not 10,000 links, not 100,000 links, not wine.com that’s 18 years ahead of us, but who is just a little bit ahead of us? Oh, I found it, cocktailsandjoints.com. Great, what did they do that we haven’t done yet? Oh, they have 13 other websites that have mentioned them. Well, can we create a piece of content that can get 13 plus mentions? Guess what? If they have 13 more than us, and our team in 90 days goes out and gets 25 more websites to link to us, we are going to catapult way past cocktailsandjoints.com, not only past them, we’re going to pass a number of other people.
Since we have daily fundamental ads on our websites like Google ad sense and a couple of other affiliate offers, by default, more traffic will equal more money. What’s cool about this is, this type of content is evergreen, once people like it, it doesn’t fade away, Google actually raises us in the rankings, we then get more traffic for the same piece of content 90 days later, and it’s like a ping pong event, it doesn’t stop, it doesn’t stop.
I’m going to cut it off right here because this is both audio and visual. I am Ken Courtright from Today’s Growth, Growing Businesses Today. I want to go back to my slides with another thank you, because on this slide right here, a big thanks to my listeners. As of last week if you hit podcast, click on business, I was in the front row for 3 days, and our podcast exploded. I was loving checking out the stats every day, this is a lot of fun for me. If you like this and you find it valuable, if you could do me a favor, shoot me a rating or a review, and then subscribe to the podcast because from what I’m told, as I’ve now climbed and hit that top part of the business, for me to stay there I’ve got to get my reviews consistently growing, my ratings and the subscribers consistently growing, so this is definitely a shout out for help.
I love the popularity of this thing, love the growth. This is very fun for me. I’m loving it, so I’m thankful to everybody that’s hearing this, and rock and roll, I will talk to you guys soon. Take care.