Mark Cahill is someone I’ve always known of and respected, so I was delighted to find (albeit a bit late) that he’s mentioned (and linked to) me in one of his posts.
I wanted to share it with you because it goes to show just how much more valuable Social Media is than SEO.
In the comments, Ari Herzog (another person I have plenty of time for) says, “If Google died tomorrow, you and I would continue blogging as if nothing changed.” Ari says that we shouldn’t be thinking about Google, and I agree. I don’t even think anyone should be doing SEO any more (that’s another – very long – conversation, though)!
In the post, Mark acknowledges Ari’s and my view that we shouldn’t focus too much of our attention on search engines. In his comment back to Ari, Mark agrees but offers the view that Google knows which links are relevant. In a more e-commerce setting, search engines would also be much more important.
It’s a very worthwhile comment, we can’t just ignore search engines completely. I, for one, still look at my stats – my visitors, subscribers and in part, rankings – because that tells me whether what I am doing is working. What search engines should not be used as is a indicator of performance (or KPI).
If I show up in Google Blog Search for a topic I’ve blogged about, great! But that doesn’t mean I’m successful in my goals. That doesn’t necessarily mean that my work is having an impact.
Mark’s post has been the KPI in this case. The very fact that Mark has mentioned me and linked to me has shown that my methods are working. I’m aiming to become part of the community that I follow, listen to and respect, and Mark is part of that community.
That community also includes people like Chris Brogan and it’s Chris who’s inadvertently led to my mention on Mark’s blog. I had commented on Mark’s post about blog readership after Chris mentioned the post himself. Subsequently, Mark felt the need to mention my comments when talking about link relevance.
Purely by engaging with Mark and contributing to the relevant discussion, I have gained a very valuable mention and a great link. We’ve also got the beginnings of a dialogue. One that I expect will continue to blossom and benefit both of us, not just in terms of links but also with knowledge.
Sure I could go to an SEO or link builder and say “get me 100 links by this time next week” but I’d take this one link from Mr Cahill over that any day!
And that, ladies and germs is the power of social media (and Chris Brogan)!