Mark Johnstone's Posts

Interview with Content Strategist Kristina Halvorson

SEO, PR, Social and Content often operate in silos rather than expressing an understanding that they are all critical parts of the marketing mix. They work best when each element considers the other and their common goals.  At Distilled we’re keen to see this change.

Kristina Halvorson (CEO, Brain Traffic) is widely recognized as one of the most important voices in content strategy. She is the author of Content Strategy for the Web; the founder of the Confab content strategy conference; the host of the podcast “Content Talks”; and a sought-after speaker for conferences all over the world.

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How To Make Sticky Content

We’ve all heard of sticky content, right?  But what does ‘sticky’ really mean?  And how do we make our blog posts and link-bait sticky?

There are lots of sources out there on how to write good content, but they tend to focus on the structure.  How to write titles, how to use sub-heads, the right length of sentences and paragraphs etc.   And it’s all great stuff, but it doesn’t really tell you what your content should contain!

How do you know your idea’s a winner?  How do you know it will spread?

Chip and Dan Heath address these factors in their AMAZING book, “Made to Stick”.  After years of study, the things they’ve found that help ideas take hold can be categorised under the following 6 principles.

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SEO Catchphrase

A very light-hearted post for you today.  Similar to the British TV show Catchphrase.  From the picture clues below, determine the well-known SEO phrase.  To use presenter Roy Walker’s old catchphrase, simply “say what you see”

Number 1


Number 2


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How to Kick-Start SEO Projects

At Distilled, there’s a saying that ‘communication solves all problems’.  And the first project meeting is the best time to get communication flowing.

The following guidelines for kick-off meetings are given from an agency/consultancy perspective, but should be applicable to in-house projects too.

The first thing to realise, as the consultant, is...

The kick-off meeting is not about providing answers, but asking questions

The client may reasonably expect you to know the answers to some of the questions you’re going to ask, but it’s always best to get it from the horse’s mouth and avoid anything falling between the cracks.  That said, you should frame it in such a way, so they don’t think you haven’t done your homework (you should have done your homework btw – this is not your get out of jail card for a lack of preparation).

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How Many Links Should An Infographic Get?

2010 was declared by some as the year of the infographic.  And when everyone jumped on the bandwagon, infographics quickly became the 2010 version of a top 10 list.

So Why The Explosion In Infographics?

With content still reigning as king (or at least queen) in the link-building world, and attention spans getting shorter and shorter, data visualisation remains a great way to deliver a message in a short and attention-grabbing manner.

But Can Infographics Live Up To The Hype?

I wanted to analyse some sites that have been successful gaining links to visualised data (not necessarily infographics), and see if we could gain some insight.

Take the following 3 sites -, Visual Economics and the Hitwise Blog - and note the link-popularity of their top content compared with the blog homepage...

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