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Random Acts of Publicity: Links

Why should you care about linking to a friend’s book? Google. And other search engines. Ever wondered how to get your page to show up on the #1 position on a Google search query?

RandomACTS

Link to Specific Webpages with Specific Terms

Google takes a number of factors into account when it ranks webpages and how those webpages come up as search results. The top three results for any particular search term garner the most clicks by far. At the very least, you want a webpage to be in the top 30 results, or your chances of clicks are virtually zero.

Think about how someone might search for your friend’s book. Yes, by his/her name; possibly by the title. But what about “teen vampire love story”? (Surprisingly, Twilight does NOT come up first on this search query!)

My friend, Carla McClafferty’s most recent book is In Defiance of Hitler: The Secret Mission of Varian Fry. varian

It’s a story about a Harvard-educator American journalist who goes to Nazi-occupied France and helps a thousand Jews escape. If I want to link to her book, the most helpful thing would be to use something like this: Holocaust Rescuer, including Marc Chagall.

In other words, the links help in and of themselves. But if you use descriptive words as the text for the link, it helps even more. She doesn’t need help in getting her book found by the title or by her name: she needs help getting it found by someone interested in Holocaust rescuers.

Add links to your friend’s book whenever, where ever you can; use keywords as the link text for extra credit.

Wikipedia Links

Wikipedia is the internet encyclopedia,which is edited by, well, by you. Put up a Wikipedia page for your friend. Wikipedia won’t allow you to put up one for yourself, but you can put up one for a friend. Be sure to read Wikipedia’s guidelines before doing this, as they are specific about how to add pages.

NONFICTION AUTHORS: Or, add your friend’s NF book as a reference for a Wikipedia page, but only if appropriate. (Again, please read Wikipedia’s guidelines carefully.)

Your Random Act of Publicity Task for Today

Link to a friend’s webpage or bookstore listing with specific keywords.

Please post what you’ve done today.

5 Comments
  • Toto
    September 10, 2009

    “Wikipedia won’t allow you to put up one for yourself, but you can put up one for a friend. Be sure to read Wikipedia’s guidelines before doing this, as they are specific about how to add pages.”

    This is incorrect. Wikipedia does not prohibit people from writing about themselves; it merely strongly discourages them. It also strongly discourages people from writing about their friends, family, or their works.

    It is a grave error to believe that you can advertise yourself, or your friends, on Wikipedia, if you are a non notable person (e.g. a mostly unknown author). Chances are that your article will be deleted, and that a permanent record will be kept that the article was deleted due to its subject being non notable. Because Wikipedia has such high standing with Google, this permanent record may well be the first Google hit for your name, or your friend’s name, reminding everybody that you or your friend is a nobody.

    In short, steer clear of Wikipedia.

  • Darcy Pattison
    September 10, 2009

    Toto:
    Thanks for the response on Wikipedia. I’m sorry you didn’t leave links to the exact pages on Wikipedia which gives the info you reference.

    My understanding from reading and writing on Wikipedia, is that you are discouraged from writing about yourself. And yes, notable persons should be featured. However, many of the authors who read here ARE notable, or their friends are! They have won many awards in children’s literature and should have pages on Wikipedia.

    So, if you want to try Wikipedia, please read their guidelines. You can start from their basic introduction and move on from there:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Introduction

    It shouldn’t be done lightly, but don’t feel intimidated, either.
    Darcy

  • Elizabeth O. Dulemba
    September 10, 2009

    Today I linked to a friend’s book, ALEXANDER THE GREAT ROCKS THE WORLD by Vicky Alvear Shecter!
    :)
    e

  • Elizabeth O. Dulemba
    September 10, 2009

    Oops – meant to add the link:
    http://dulemba.com/2009/09/library-card-sign-up-month.html

  • Jean Reidy
    September 10, 2009

    Today I blogged about my crit buddy Judith and linked like a crazy lady to her website, books and JacketFlap page. I also linked to Darcy!! If you want to read the post, here’s the link:
    http://jeanreidy.blogspot.com/2009/09/random-acts-of-publicity-week-judith.html