When we think of brand exposure and search engine optimization (SEO) we are often narrowly focused on our website and do not take into consideration the many ways to build exposure and SEO that are outside of our website. Most businesses, organizations, and groups have events that they are hosting or attending these are phenomenal opportunities to increase exposure online.
When we attend business functions, workshops, training’s, conventions, networking events, forums, etc. we look to the actual event to get our ROI (return on investment). How many contacts did I make, how much knowledge did I get that will increase business, how many people saw and will remember my company? It is time to branch past the physical and go into the exponential world.
One way to build brand awareness is to promote events that your company is associated with. These events can be events you are hosting, attending, sponsoring, or speaking at. Online event listings, because of their association with well trafficked websites, are making the first page of Google, sometimes even over a business profile listing on those same sites.
Search Engine Listing by Company and/or Brand
Facebook for instance, the business pages sometimes get Google love but if you create an event on Facebook and that is well promoted through your contacts and networks via email campaigns, your blog, and on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter that event listing can rank on the first page of Google under a search for your company.
Yelp is not just a consumer review site it can also be an event promotion portal, where you post your event, get reviews before, during, and after the event and build search engine optimization in the process. Yelp is another site that gets millions of monthly visitors, because of this traffic your event listing gets great Google placement when your company is searched.
Twtvite is a Twitter event site, events promoted on Twitter are referred to as Tweetups (a lot like meetups) and twtvite is a place to post your event, describe it, and promote it. Twtvite does not get as much traffic as the aforementioned sites, but Twitter does and because twtvite is promoted on and through Twitter it benefits from all of that exposure. Google loves popular links and link association, twtvite is associated with Twitter and gets a lot of backlinks through Twitter (people talking about twtvite events and sharing them with their friends) so Google ranks a listing on this site pretty high up.
Search Engine Ranking by Event Type, Location, and/or Keywords
Eventful was created for the entertainment industry and is now growing into business, networking, and more community focused events. The site says it has 15 million users, however the site is only receiving 1.5 million unique visitors and 2.2 million repeat visitors this discrepancy could be due to users receiving their updates via email, iPhone, and/or online messaging services. In any case Eventful is pulling up in the search engines for location based keyword driven event searches.
Meetup is free to use, but has a quarterly or an annual fee for those wanting to start their own groups. It may give your company some SEO but in most cases listings from this site pop up when people search for specific events, with location, and/or keywords. On top of the search engine optimization, Meetup is its own community, a community that is pretty active, with users visiting the site regularly and actively seeking information and updates via email. Creating a group and posting events on this site can give you exposure on and off the site, if you do not have the wherewithall to maintain a group, being active in the groups and meetups will get you exposure also.
Craigslist, is not just a place to sell your belongings, list garage sales and properties for sale, you can also list events here. Craigslist is a tricky site though, sometimes listing show up on the search engines and sometimes not. Craigslist does get a good deal of traffic, if you list an event on their site you will get some exposure within their community of users, you will get a backlink to your website from a high ranking site(this will help your website’s SEO), and you may get company and/or keyword search engine placement.
Up and Coming Event Sites
Eventbrite provides online event management and ticketing services, this is a full service event site that is free if your event is free. If you sell tickets to your event, Eventbrite collects a fee per ticket. What we like about Eventbrite is that they have made it easy to publish a customizable web page for the event, easy to promote your event through the social media sites and your email marketing platform, and you can collect payments through their service.
M&M, Events Meetings and Mixers, is a site that you have to, in most cases, pay to list on unless you are non-profit, chamber of commerce, Score type organization, etc. or you are hosting a true networking or free event, but it is great for keyword driven search. Like Meetup this site may give your company some SEO but in most cases listings from this site pop up when people search for specific event types, with location, and/or company or organizations added in.
Biznik is a business network, a lot like LinkedIn (though they say they are NOT another LinkedIn) that promotes building your business through collaboration, conversation, and by sharing your knowledge. You can put up your profile, post articles on this site (which are starting to place pretty well in the search engines), and post events. The more traffic this site gets, directly from the search engines and the social sites, the better the rankings will be. We have seen events on this site coming up more for keyword searches (i.e. San Diego business networking) and less for company searches, though the profile listing will help the company and individual in search.