Nick Garner

Search Optimisation : SEO | Online PR | Social Media

Social Media and Me

May 9th, 2011 · No Comments

I'm a social media specialist!

Social has been heating up recently in my neighborhood. I’m spending a reasonable amount of time working on how my employers (Unibet) use social more effectively within the organization.

A couple of months ago I did a session for a Marketing Week conference where i talked about how social helps generate interest in something, acts as an honest reference point to others seeing the ‘conversation’. I then tied in SEO, explaining how SEO is one of the mechanisms by which this content gets exposed.

Marketing Week Conference SEO and Social PPT from Nick Garner

Broadly the areas im interested in are
- Refer a friend (mine the social graph)
- Influencing the businesses technical architecture to make our content more easy to navigate to and get a hold of (fuel for conversations & mindshare)
- Making our content easier to navigate around (if you’re interested in us, were going to be easier to reach into)
- CRM infrastructure to externalize our help content (social isn’t just Facebook, its happy users, so help them)
- Portability of data (where you are, we can be there too with content you might want in a widget/mobile/embedded on a page)
- Building a blog infrastructures, leading onto a content framework I.e the web sites then the writers

My main thesis is
- Social isn’t just Facebook and twitter, its people communicating together anywhere
- Social is about being authentic, helpful, entertaining, engaging
- Social is part of the DNA of a business, so that means getting the technology, staff incentives and staff freedoms right.
- Make our content accessible and portable
- Be worth engaging with anywhere i.e. forums, Facebook, twitter, other sites… and your own site
- Its ambient like brand, its the fuel that propels word of mouth acquisition – that 50% of all your new business you don’t know how to track

and there you are, simple really   ;-)

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Powerpoint presentation happiness

May 1st, 2011 · No Comments

Garr Reynolds - Presentation Zen

The greatest presentation I’ve ever seen is this:

He is a hard act to follow, but if you even get a tiny part of his magic in your presentation, you will probably be a great presenter.

As you my know a PowerPoint presentation can break out into

  • A motivational theme
  • Transmission of facts and information
  • Or a bit of both.

Generally I assume:

  • People can already read, so don’t repeat the words on your slide verbatim
  • Keep the numbers of ideas to a minimum per slide
  • There is a start, middle and an end in all presentations and generally people forget about the stuff in the middle!
  • Come in with a BANG and go out with a BANG
  • People get bored with “ummmmmm, ahhhhhh, OK” So I like to keep it flowing
  • I have a great deal of work to do here !
  • People like to be engaged, so look at them as much as possible
  • And on engagement, ask questions….and do something with the replies
  • Have takeaways – URL’s to tools and other interesting things they can use later i.e. create a google doc, add all you content there, create a link to it – easy!

There are 3 books that form the basis of my presentation outlook

Presentation Zen review (taken from powerpoint ninja) The book on amazon

“an informative guide to presentation preparation, design, and delivery. If you’re not already familiar with the popular Presentation Zen blog, this book highlights many of his theories and techniques. If you’ve seen a presentation from famous presenters such as Seth Godin, Guy Kawasaki, or Steve Jobs, you’ll be familiar with the highly visual, stock-photo-heavy style that Reynolds advocates.”

My Comment: He is all about stripping out every unnecessary part of a slide, bringing it to the core so you can understand whats being presented to you. e is also about shifting the emphasis to teh speaker and not the slides – after all that’s why you’re there – right?

Here is Garr Reynolds explaining Presentation Zen to a group of Googlers. Its a pleasant watch, where he explains how you can use Presentation Zen (1 hour or so)

Resonate (review taken from their site) The book on amazon

By leveraging techniques normally reserved for cinema and literature, Resonate reveals how to transform any presentation into an engaging journey. You will discover how to understand your audience, create persuasive content, and elicit a groundswell response.

With Resonate, you’ll learn to:

  • Connect with your audience empathetically
  • Craft ideas that get repeated
  • Rely on story structures inherent in great communication
  • Create captivating content
  • Inspire enthusiasm and support for your vision

My Comment: It’s an awesome book with some far reaching ideas that I do my best to employ. The main one is that a presentation moves people when it follows a path. Know the path and you will communicate beautifully.

Here is a webinar Nancy Duarte did for Ted Talks. Its full of detail… useful detail!

And finally…

Unfolding the Napkin (review taken from The book on amazon

Unfolding the Napkin teaches readers how to:

  • Improve our three “built-in” visual problem solving tools.
  • Apply the four-step visual thinking process (look-see-imagine-show) in any business situation.
  • Instantly improve our visual imaginations.
  • Learn how to recognize the type of problem we face and corresponding pictorial solution.

My Comments: It taught me to use pictures to explain how things can fit together. It has amazed me how visualising a problem makes it so much easier for everyone to understand what I’m talking about.

Here is Dan Roam explaining back of a napkin the preceding book to Unfolding the Napkin

Finally – here is me speaking – its not like the Benjamin Zander presentation, but – hey its ok!

→ No CommentsTags: Random

Nothing to do with SEO – just insane cycling!

April 10th, 2011 · 1 Comment

Check out some of the vertigo inducing jumps from the bikers headcams

→ 1 CommentTags: Random

Salesfarce amaze me, in all the wrong ways

April 3rd, 2011 · 1 Comment

Hi, I'm not here to help

I contacted today via chat to get some informaiton on a tool they have – its a customer services portal. Being in the SEO business, I wanted to have a look at this in action ‘in the wild’ to see how Google indexes this tool.
So I asked if there was a site I could have a look at….
Please wait while we find a sales agent to assist you with your question:
You have been connected to Kara C.
Kara C:  Welcome to Sales chat, my name is Kara. In order to serve you best, please provide your full company name.
Nick Garner:  ho kara – a quick quesiton – have you any examples from clients hwo use customer portal?
Nick Garner:
Kara C:  Here is an overview of our customer Portal
Kara C:
Kara C:  I can check with your Account Executive to see if he has any specific customer success stories
Nick Garner:  ive been there already – im looking for a live iteration of this software
Nick Garner:  on a company site somewhere other than salesforce
Kara C:  Your Account Executive has these details
Nick Garner:  ive asked you in the hope that i could have a reaonablky quick answer
Nick Garner:  this isnt not a quick route to simply have a look at a website
Kara C:  Sorry I don’t understand your statement
Kara C:  That information is classified which is why you need to request it through your Account executive
Nick Garner:  i just want to see this module in action on a client site i.e.
Nick Garner:  so i understand this – there is no public informaiton on who uses salesfarce
Nick Garner:  ok – im giving up on this
Nick Garner:  thanks for you help
Kara C:  Would you like me to have your AE contact you?
Nick Garner:  no because if i wanted a salesman to pitch me i woudl have called your sales line
Thank you for using Sales Chat. You may now close this window.
Your session has ended. You may now close this window.

So apart from being astonishingly unhelpful, they have proven to me (at least) that Salesforce are not a great company to deal with. As it happens I have been using Zoho CRM becuase its about 1/3rd of the cost and from what I can see is far more flexible.

→ 1 CommentTags: Random

Blast from the past – The 100 Oldest Currently Registered .COM Domains

March 25th, 2011 · 1 Comment

It’s not very SEO related, but Ive often wondered what the 1st registered .com domains were and what you could sell the biggest ones for.

Ahhhh - the money ££££

The List:

Whats interesting is how early on, no one knew how big this interweb thing would  be. Year 1, there were only about 12 domains registered (that are still live) and year 2 it climbed to about 55 domains.

The graph gives you an idea of the growth rate

Growth in registration of domains by date registered

Google Docs Spreadsheet with URLS etc here








Date registered | Domain Name | No of days after 1st domain was registered

3/15/1985    SYMBOLICS.COM    0
4/24/1985    BBN.COM    40
5/24/1985    THINK.COM    70
7/11/1985    MCC.COM    118
9/30/1985    DEC.COM    199
11/7/1985    NORTHROP.COM    237
1/9/1986    XEROX.COM    300
1/17/1986    SRI.COM    308
3/3/1986    HP.COM    353
3/5/1986    BELLCORE.COM    355
3/19/1986    IBM.COM    369
3/19/1986    SUN.COM    369
3/25/1986    INTEL.COM    375
3/25/1986    TI.COM    375
4/25/1986    ATT.COM    406
5/8/1986    GMR.COM    419
5/8/1986    TEK.COM    419
7/10/1986    FMC.COM    482
7/10/1986    UB.COM    482
8/5/1986    BELL-ATL.COM    508
8/5/1986    GE.COM    508
8/5/1986    GREBYN.COM    508
8/5/1986    ISC.COM    508
8/5/1986    NSC.COM    508
8/5/1986    STARGATE.COM    508
9/2/1986    BOEING.COM    536
9/18/1986    ITCORP.COM    552
9/29/1986    SIEMENS.COM    563
10/18/1986    PYRAMID.COM    582
10/27/1986    ALPHACDC.COM    591
10/27/1986    BDM.COM    591
10/27/1986    FLUKE.COM    591
10/27/1986    INMET.COM    591
10/27/1986    KESMAI.COM    591
10/27/1986    MENTOR.COM    591
10/27/1986    NEC.COM    591
10/27/1986    RAY.COM    591
10/27/1986    ROSEMOUNT.COM    591
10/27/1986    VORTEX.COM    591
11/5/1986    ALCOA.COM    600
11/5/1986    GTE.COM    600
11/17/1986    ADOBE.COM    612
11/17/1986    AMD.COM    612
11/17/1986    DAS.COM    612
11/17/1986    DATA-IO.COM    612
11/17/1986    OCTOPUS.COM    612
11/17/1986    PORTAL.COM    612
11/17/1986    TELTONE.COM    612
12/11/1986    3COM.COM    636
12/11/1986    AMDAHL.COM    636
12/11/1986    CCUR.COM    636
12/11/1986    CI.COM    636
12/11/1986    CONVERGENT.COM    636
12/11/1986    DG.COM    636
12/11/1986    PEREGRINE.COM    636
12/11/1986    QUAD.COM    636
12/11/1986    SQ.COM    636
12/11/1986    TANDY.COM    636
12/11/1986    TTI.COM    636
12/11/1986    UNISYS.COM    636
1/19/1987    CGI.COM    675
1/19/1987    CTS.COM    675
1/19/1987    SPDCC.COM    675
2/19/1987    APPLE.COM    706
3/4/1987    NMA.COM    719
3/4/1987    PRIME.COM    719
4/4/1987    PHILIPS.COM    750
4/23/1987    DATACUBE.COM    769
4/23/1987    KAI.COM    769
4/23/1987    TIC.COM    769
4/23/1987    VINE.COM    769
4/30/1987    NCR.COM    776
5/14/1987    CISCO.COM    790
5/14/1987    RDL.COM    790
5/20/1987    SLB.COM    796
5/27/1987    PARCPLACE.COM    803
5/27/1987    UTC.COM    803
6/26/1987    IDE.COM    833
7/9/1987    TRW.COM    846
7/13/1987    UNIPRESS.COM    850
7/27/1987    DUPONT.COM    864
7/27/1987    LOCKHEED.COM    864
7/28/1987    ROSETTA.COM    865
8/18/1987    TOAD.COM    886
8/31/1987    QUICK.COM    899
9/3/1987    ALLIED.COM    902
9/3/1987    DSC.COM    902
9/3/1987    SCO.COM    902
9/22/1987    GENE.COM    921
9/22/1987    KCCS.COM    921
9/22/1987    SPECTRA.COM    921
9/22/1987    WLK.COM    921
9/30/1987    MENTAT.COM    929
10/14/1987    WYSE.COM    943
11/2/1987    CFG.COM    962
11/9/1987    MARBLE.COM    969
11/16/1987    CAYMAN.COM    976
11/16/1987    ENTITY.COM    976
11/24/1987    KSR.COM    984
11/30/1987    NYNEXST.COM    990

If you had gone back in time to 1984, you could have bought and then resold:

1., sold to QuinStreet for $16 million in 2009.
2., sold for $12-$14 million in 2006.
3., sold for $9.99 million in 2008.
4., sold for $9.5 million in 2007.
5., sold for $7.5 million in 1999.
6., sold to for $7.5 million in 2006.
7., sold for $7 million in 2004.
8., sold for $5.88 million in 2004.
9., sold for $5.5 million in 2003.
10., sold to Toys ‘R Us for $5.1 million in 2009.


→ 1 CommentTags: Random

Marketing Week Presentation

March 22nd, 2011 · No Comments

I had done a presentation for Marketing Week a couple of months ago where I talked about SEO (of course!) the presentation went down pretty well, so out of the blue they called me and asked if I be a stand in for a speaker who couldn’t make the engagement.

It was for a financial services conference. Since this is a very broad area, I decided to go for a generic presentation covering some big ideas I always use when I explain SEO, PPC and conversion optimisation.

I find numbers bore people, so there are only a few of them, instead its lots of pictures and concepts that hopefully the audience could take away with them and use as their foundation for understanding the high level forces that shape SEO , PPC and Conversion.

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