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Finding Networked Influencers

If you’re into optimizing a site for search, then developing keywords that you would like to “own” for SEO purposes is pretty straight forward. Cruise over to your friendly neighborhood Google Keyword Tool and figure out what terms people are searching for every month.

But let’s say that you’re not trying to come up with keywords people are searching for on-line. Let’s say that you are looking for keywords that people write about on-line. Because you want to find sites built by networked influencers around given topics.

Last week I talked about inbound and outbound links and it didn’t seem like anybody cared… So let me show you a picture that blew my mind today after tooling around with Social Radar for a few hours:

Boing Boing is a Networked Influencer

What You’re Looking At

I set up a search of 500 sites/blogs using the terms Health and Gaming within 10 words of one another without the terms Gambling or Casino present in the search. This is a subset of those 500 sites with Boing Boing selected as the center node.

Green nodes have the most relevant posts according to my search parameters, and bigger nodes have more average daily inbound links.

Relevance being important because I only want to target sites/blogs that actually talk about the topics I care about, in this case that happens to be health AND gaming.

Average inbound links being important because that gives me an indication of social media reach.

What I’m Doing

Tools like Social Radar and Sysomos that show networked influencers help product and community managers perform the first function in the relationship marketing process / theory I wrote about and illustrated. We’re looking for 100 networked influencers who talk about the keywords that we care about, on a somewhat regular basis, so that product managers don’t have to guess about who they need to know if they want to get the word out about their upcoming product launch.

As an aside: This isn’t intended to be disingenuous, mind you. I’m assuming that a product manager has a minimum amount of passion for the product they are developing, and that bloggers and community managers have a minimum amount of passion for the ideas they have built communities around.

The thought is to make it easy for these two parties to find one another, and see what comes of it.

Thoughts on Boolean Operators

If you’re not a Boolean Search Operator wizard, then you’re in luck because I found a site that really helped me to understand how to start optimizing my searches in Social Radar. Basic things to know:

and vs. or statements I’ve learned that I can put AND and OR statements together in the same search string. This is useful if I want to query the keywords I care about along with my brand’s name.

not I never really used the NOT operator before today, but I gotta say that eliminating certain words that pop-up is very nice.

near You need to make sure that two words are within some kind of proximity with the sites you’re looking at, if they go together in real life. Especially for a term made up of two or more common words, like health and gaming.

parenthesis Making sure that your search strings are separated is an important task, especially when you’re trying to sift through 500 records at a time.

Who’s Working On This Stuff

I am curious if anybody else is working on projects like this with a similar methodology. Please hit me up in the comments or on Twitter if you are, because I would love to talk with you.

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