Best of 2008: Random but Interesting, Part 1
Looking for the best career search websites? Online tools to help you check out that prospective employee, new next-door neighbor or potentially significant other? Specialty search engines? The story behind LOLcats? Resources to improve your Internet marketing skills? Find music online? Record and promote podcasts?
Find the answers to these random and unrelated questions and more in this set of valuable but difficult-to-classify posts from the last year.
Help wanted. Desperately. by Reflections of a Newsosaur
In a great post about online career resources, Alan Mutter traces the decline of the newspaper industry to the fall in help-wanted classified advertising. Mutter contends that newspapers once virtually owned the business of connecting employers with job-seekers, but, failing to sense the shift happening around them, have conceded billions of dollars in classified ad revenues, first to sites like CareerBuilder, HotJobs and Monster, more recently to SimplyHired, Oodle and NotchUp.
New Sites Make It Easier To Spy on Your Friends by The Wall Street Journal
Though the tone is a bit overly dramatic, Vauhini Vara makes some good points here about how you can use sites like Google Maps and Spokeo to learn things about others they may not want you to know—and how to protect yourself from the same behavior. Most of this is common sense (or at least should be): be careful about what you post on sites like your Amazon Wish List and Flickr, and don't ever give a social media site access to your email address book.
10 Rules for Setting Your Internet Marketing Budget by Conversation Marketing
In yet another of his many remarkable posts, Ian Lurie provides practical responses to the "It costs WHAT?!" question, such as: "If you expect to get a #1 ranking on Google for $99, you're insane;" "Reliable hosting costs more than $9.95 a month;" and my favorite: "If you're spending $250,000 to build your product and get it to market, don't tell me you can't spend $15,000 to give it a decent web site, unless you want to watch my eyes bug out like I've been suddenly depressurized."
The Big List Of Major B2B Search Engines by Search Engine Land
The resourceful Galen DeYoung notes here that while "most search marketers focus on Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft...B2B search marketers also have a growing number of vertical search options." While these search engines / portals / directories have much lower traffic than the big three, that traffic is much more focused. Galen reviews a number of sites that can provide both direct traffic as well as being valuable for B2B SEO links, such as Jayde, Zibb and Alibaba.
The new fame: Internet celebrity by CNN
Reporting from last year's ROFLCon, an event devoted to Internet culture, Anne Hammock describes how the web has changed the possibilities for, and very definition of, fame. The conference, described as " the biggest gathering of micro-celebrities ever," brought together such niche luminaries as "World of Warcraft character Leeroy Jenkins (born Ben Shultz)...Kyle MacDonald, who gained international attention for an online chronicle of his adventures starting with one red paper clip and trading, one item at a time, up to a home in Saskatchewan, Canada" and some of the people behind LOLcats.
Finding Google custom search engines by Phil Bradley's weblog
Phil Bradley shows how to find Google custom search engines, created through Google's Custom Search Engine program, which "allows expert human editors to enhance the results (of standard Google searches). For example, custom search engines can be built that provide different information to patients searching for diagnosis and treatment information about a particular illness than for doctors seeking out the latest clinical and scientific research on the same malady.
Improving Your Skillset: Your Path to Becoming a Better Internet Marketer by PluginHQ
Ignore the somewhat spammy opening for this post, because once you're past it Glen Allsopp provides an excellent list of the various skillsets involved in online marketing, with links to useful blogs and resources that help you improve your knowledge and skills in each area. For example, copywriting (Copyblogger, Michael Fortin), search engine marketing (Gordon Choi, PPCBlog), SEO (SEOmoz, SEO Book) and social media (Chris Brogan, ProBlogger).
3 Reasons Why Purpose is Essential in Business by Words for Hire
In this thought-provoking, almost spiritual post, Karen D. Swim makes the case for the importance of having a clear and consistent purpose behind your business strategy and actions. "Whether you are an entrepreneur, employee, blogger or stay at home parent, life requires you to have strength of character. Without it you risk being tossed to and fro by the whims of life. Purpose keeps you connected with your internal compass, vision and values."
The Complete Idiot’s Guide To Podcasting by Search for Blogging
Mert Erkal delivers just what this post's title promises. If you're a podcasting pro, you can safely skip this one. But those just getting started with online audio will find a great list of helpful resources here, from free podcasting software (Audacity) to guides and tutorials on podcast production, as well as several links to worthy example podcasts.
16 Free Search Engines For Finding Music Online – Start Listening Now! by AddictiveTips
There's no need to limit yourself to iTunes. This article reviews free search engines for finding and listening to music online, from the popular Last.fm to less-known sites like Karabit, BeeMP3 and Internet jukebox Songza.
Previous posts in this series:
Best of 2008: SEO Guidance, Part 1
Best of 2008: Interactive PR, Part 1
Best of 2008: SEO Tools, Part 1
Best of 2008: Search Engine Marketing
Best of 2008: Web Analytics
Best of 2008: Email Marketing Tips
Best of 2008: SEO Keyword Tips & Tools
Best of 2008: Sales & Marketing Copywriting
Best of 2008: SEO Link Building
Best of 2008: Website Design
Best of 2008: WordPress Tools and Tips
Best of 2008: Web & SEO Copywriting
Best of 2008: SEO Guidance, Part 2
Best of 2008: Social Media Optimization, Part 1
Best of 2008: AdWords Tips and Tactics, Part 1
Best of 2008: SEO Tools, Part 2
Best of 2008: SEM Landing Pages
Best of 2008: Blogging for Business, Part 1
Best of 2008: Interactive PR, Part 2
Best of 2008: SEO Guidance, Part 3
Best of 2008: Social Media Optimization, Part 2
Best of 2008: AdWords Tips and Tactics, Part 2
Best of 2008: Strategy and Branding, Part 1
Best of 2008: Cool Web Tools, Part 1
Best of 2008: Blogging for Business, Part 2
Contact Tom Pick: tomATwebmarketcentralDOTcom