The Anatomy of a Search Marketing Scholarship Contest

The last four weeks of Marketing Pilgrim’s Search Engine Marketing Scholarship Contest has been lots of fun. When I put together the idea for a scholarship, I wanted to find a way to give back to an industry that has been very good to me and help find the next top talent – you could call it “SEM Idol”. I was fortunate enough to find some great sponsors, who contributed over $6,000 in prizes and a panel of judges who are arguably the best in the industry.

I wanted to give everyone who entered a fair chance, so I crafted the contest to have two components:

Light Posting…

I’m in LA until Tuesday night, so posting will be a little lighter than usual.

Welcome New Sponsor – Handy Recovery

If you’ve ever accidentally deleted content from your computer or suffered at the hands of a virus attack, you may want to visit our latest sponsor – Handy Recovery.

This great little tool will recover files – even if deleted from the Recycle Bin – and allow you to browse the content on your hard disk and find deleted files and folders that can be recovered.

On a technical note, Handy Recovery works with most Window’s OS’s and can even recovers lost images from CompactFlash, SmartMedia and other cards – just in case you lose little Timmy’s birthday photos.

Handy Recovery will hook you up with a free 30-day trial version and if you like it, it’s only $39! A bargain!

Marketing Pilgrim’s Plugin List

Jeremy Luebke emailed me to ask if I would care to share the plugins used on MP. The site was fully custom built, so there may be some modified things, but here’s the list…

Akismet – Akismet checks your comments against the Akismet web serivce to see if they look like spam or not.

Gravatars – for those cool photos next to comments.

intouch – for the contact form.

No Self Pings – prevents WordPress from sending pings for stuff I link to from my own site.

Social Bookmark Links – the drop down menu for bookmarking a post.

Subscribe To Comments – lets readers get email updates on comments.

Google Sitemaps – to help Google find all the new pages.

WordPress Reports – adds my Google Analytics and Feedburner stats to the WordPress dash.

SEM Scholarship Week 3 Winner Announced

Week 3 of our SEM Scholarship contest has concluded and we have our third finalist.

Congratulations to Jordan McCollum who wins the third round with her entry – “SEO is Pointless (But You Don’t Have to Tell Your Clients)“. Jordan’s entry carried the most unique views of all our entries in week 3, with a total of 633 unique views to his page, winning by just 3 unique views! It was a close battle this week, with many entrants getting creative in their efforts to promote their entry – some even using PPC!

Jordan wins a copy of “Search Engine Optimization: An Hour a Day” and “Please Ring Bell for Service” and qualifies as one of four finalists, who will face our expert panel of judges, to determine who will win the $6,000 grand prize package.

Week 4 entries are now published
and entries have now closed.

Search Engine Marketing Scholarship Contest Entries – October 30th

We’ve uploaded the final round of our SEM Scholarship Contest entries and the procrastinators finally came thru. :-)

The following 20 entries qualified for the week and we’ll track the traffic to each article over the next week. The most popular post of the week will secure the author one of four finalist positions for our grand prize giveaway.

Here’s the full list of article entries:

The Golden Rule of SEO

By James Bowden

Everything you need to know about Search Engine Optimization (SEO) you learned in kindergarten. Really. You may already know much more than you think.

The armies of programmers that create search engines work very hard to get computers to do a bad job of what you do in the blink of an eye: make a judgment about a web page that makes sense – common sense.

This article introduces the basic ideas behind Search Engine Optimization (SEO), using concrete examples to reinforce these principles. It also aims to teach you the information needed to make informed SEO decisions on your own.

In the beginning…