Guest Commentary: Steve Rosenberg

Jun 1, 2008  •  Post A Comment

How do you turn your on-air brand into an online powerhouse?
In the quest to boost revenue these days, a variety of tactics are under the microscope. But let’s start with one of the more tactical—your Web site.
Whether you run a station group, cable network, production company or just about any other enterprise comprising “traditional media,” there are steps you can take now to quickly start building a thriving online business by increasing your traffic and, ultimately, your ad rates.
The first requires changing your mindset. Instead of looking at your Web site as a mere promotional extension, see it as a standalone business that one day could surpass revenues from your existing business.
Your brand holds tremendous value and awareness, much more than some obscure Web-only site with a questionable valuation.
The process begins with making your site accessible to search engine users by watermarking logos on your online videos, then placing them on video search and user-generated content sites.
Other tactics include adding “tags” (keywords) to videos, so when someone types in “favorite TV stars” or “best television shows” on Google, your site appears.
You also can try to enhance visitors’ overall experience by linking text to your video. And what better way to know how to find your audience than by inserting code that prompts visitors to enter their e-mail addresses before viewing clips.
TV stations, meanwhile, should consider bidding on keywords to tie Web sites to attention-grabbing news events. A user typing in “Democratic presidential race,” for instance, would be linked to your political coverage.
In addition, paid search can be utilized to capture stories as they break. So if you had bid, say, 50 cents per keyword on “Eliot Spitzer” when the scandal broke, you would have driven those typing in the former governor’s name to your station’s Web site in a New York minute.
Once at your Web site, users are more apt to stick around to peruse other relevant stories and information. Each new page view brings additional revenue opportunities and brand reinforcement.
Another proven tactic, known as Web 2.0/Social Media Optimization, allows for the greater propagation of your brand and assets across the Internet; however, it does require giving up some control in the process.
If you’re willing—and the rewards can be well worth it—make sure your marketing department includes your brand in discussions on other popular sites and blogs.
Specific Web 2.0 steps include direct referrals, or inbound links, which allow bloggers on related sites to link directly back to your site, or at least to a page referencing your site.
Along the same line as inbound links are permanent “ad” placements, which can be purchased on an individual basis for about $50 per month. Both methods connect to other well-viewed publishers’ sites, providing greater exposure and search engine rankings.
Social media also allows you to operate subversively. Your TV station, for example, can drive traffic by placing a recipe elsewhere on the Web to plug a newscast cooking segment that has been repurposed on your Web site.
The final measure under Web 2.0 Optimization is targeting key social media sites such as Digg, StumbleUpon, Flickr, YouTube, Google Blog Search, General Buzz, Yahoo! Answers and Wikipedia. Publishing content or adding bookmarks or comments on these sites will help build your brand, drive people back to your Web site and increase your search engine rankings.
You should also focus on making changes or enhancements to your Web site to improve its natural search ranking. Begin by reorganizing the navigation on your sites, which can be done by writing “keyword-rich” text links and moving the most-often clicked content toward the top of the page.
While the method is less effective for graphic-intensive sites than Search Engine Optimization (SEO) —a series of paid methods designed to dramatically increase visibility on search engines like Google and Yahoo and significantly raise traffic—it may suffice in increasing additional visits to your Web site.
An added step to consider is installing tracking software. It will permit you to see what pages and keywords are clicked most often, how many visitors the site generates, where traffic originates and how to improve the search campaign. That information, in turn, will allow you to decide what pages to keep, increase or delete.
The final tactic to review is link building. Essentially, this tactic involves getting more qualified and quality back-links (links from other Web sites) to link to your station’s Web site. More outside links equate to more “votes” from major search engines and higher Google page rankings.
And, with them, the greater your bottom line becomes.
Steve Rosenberg, formerly president of Universal Domestic Television and co-president of Universal Television Distribution, is CEO of PV Media Group, comprised of online advertising network AdOn and SEO marketing firm Prime Visibility.


  1. Great post!

  2. Thanks for the great post Steve! Many people forget how important link building is. Even after years, the one thing that has never lost its value in the SEO industry is content. Besides content, Matt Cutts has also mentioned other ways to get natural links in his Webmaster Video series… The details are available on http://blog.directorymaximizer.com/2010/07/23/matt-cutts-tips-on-link-building/

  3. Some people just dont understand, patents are needed otherwise, when the inventor cant sell his product. the real networks Philosophy… “When you can’t sell your products on your own, just sue anyone else that does the job better.” Patent An Invention thank you

  4. Good post, thanks

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  8. good morning there,I found your site on google and yahoo,I wanted to comment about this software that Im using to get backlinks and everybody is talking about it.Im gonna come back soon to let you know a little more about it.great site by the way! have a great day!

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