How to Leverage Author Authority for SEO

There’s a large quantity of writers on the web today, but quantity is not what is important. What is important is the quality of the writer, and the quality of work that is produced. Google can now easily filter out thin, content farm/ghost-written content and each day they seem to more and more reward the content (and content creators) that has value to long-tail, semantic searches.
aliie gray freeland iacquire

Says Allie Gray Freeland (@AllieGrayFree), PR Director at iAcquire and writer for Huffington Post and Search Engine Journal, in her recent Q&A with SearchDecoder.

Recently Allie and her team at iAcquire launched ClearVoice, which is a free platform that measures the ‘authority’ of content creators on the Web.

What’s author authority and how is it measured?

Author authority is synonymous with the “ClearVoice Score,” which is a measure of an online author’s complete bodies of digitally published work and its social relevance. We measure authority based on these metrics:

  • The domain authority of the published content
  • The power of the site the writer published their content on
  • The frequency of the articles published by the writer
  • The quantity of articles published by the writer
  • The variety of domains the writer publishes to
  • The social relevance of each individual piece of content

The score also takes into account a publishers’ authorship semantics, which determines proper credit for content created.

clear voice tool

Joe Griffin, CEO of iAcquire, said it best in a recent interview he conducted. He said:

We believe that content and author identity are vital partners in the rapidly evolving content economy. We’re seeing major search engines like Google, and social networks like LinkedIn and Facebook commit their algorithms to serving quality content first, with special attention paid to the voices behind that content.

What are most effective outreach techniques to promote content?

Holistically, my favorite outreach techniques blend with other forms of marketing:

  • influencer relations,
  • social media,
  • co-marketing (best if done with companies larger than yours so you can ride on their coattails),
  • and digital media relations work wonderfully.

Also, I try to switch up my pitch based on publication target and offer unique content that speaks directly to their readers: whether that’s offering a unique guest post, infographic, or a quote from a leader within your company.

Tools such as ClearVoice has a huge benefit not only for writers, but also PR professionals and SEO link builders. ClearVoice can be used as a tool to search for influential voices based on a specific topical search.

During the launch of ClearVoice, we used the platform to find influencers that we wanted to reach out to to demo the product or to give a news advance to. We searched for terms like “content marketing” and “SEO” and came up with a gamut of contacts. We extended the search to be publication-specific: looking for writers who cover our beat from specific publications like “Mashable,” “Tech Crunch,” “Business Insider,” etc. and built a great media list that way.

social outreach

credit: iAcquire

Should we be using anchor-text links in author profiles?

The key to winning with Google these days is to be natural and relevant. Your anchor text should have two key components:

A) Should have proper authorship markup so its credited as “yours:”

Google+

  • Authorship is valid if: @href contains a G+ profile link and @rel=”author” or @rel=”me”
  • Authorship is valid if: @href contains a G+ profile link with the [?&]rel=author query parameter and @rel DOES NOT contain nofollow
  • True semantic Google Authorship: <a href=”https://plus.google.com/G+ID? rel=author”>Google</a>

Twitter

  • Authorship is valid if: meta[@name=’twitter:creator’] tag (@content is a valid twitter handle [0-9A-Za-z_]{1,15})
  • Authorship is valid if: <a> tag @href is a Twitter profile URL and @rel is “author” or @rel is “me”

B)  Should have natural anchor text. By all means, a byline might be the only place you get a link to your domain, so take advantage of it! Be natural in your linking: switch up your anchor and URLs.

author typing machinephoto credit: geishaboy500 via photopin cc

Why was ClearVoice developed?

ClearVoice co-founders Joe Griffin and Jay Swansson saw a need for creating an objective measure of content creators. They thought: “Wouldn’t it be cool if we could somehow rank authors, journalists and bloggers on the power of their voices based on the principles of authorship?”

We answered by creating a powerful search, an empirical author score and an uncomplicated interface. What ClearVoice does is give brands a transparent look into subject matter expert writers within their industry while simultaneously giving writers the ability to share their work and create real economic value for themselves.

SearchDecoder: I am on it, yay!

matthew capala clear voice

We actually launched ClearVoice internally in October 2013. The first version of the platform started as a place where writers could pick up writing opportunities and get paid for their work — all from one web-based dashboard.

In the meantime, our developers were crawling the web for long-form content (like blogs and digital publications). What we discovered is that we could score the long-form content of the world’s authors to gauge their publication power. The ClearVoice Score was born and launched to the public in late June.

The most comprehensive index of prominent web content producers, the ClearVoice Score is based on authorship markup from Google and Twitter. Based on digital signatures, the ClearVoice Score algorithm identifies subject matter experts and empowers companies. Brands and publishers can search by author, topic, and publication and compare the power of voices within their vertical. Authors can showcase their breadth of work in portfolios.

What’s next for ClearVoice?

The second and third phases of the launch, which will be publicly available later in 2014, will feature a content assignment desk and a unique set of publisher tools that will help brands, publishers and content producers manage their editorial calendar, content assignments and publishing. 


 We are also doubling our writer base to around 200,000. Upcoming updates will also include  better workflows to claim your profile and add non signed content. Overall a great user experience for writers.Also check out: How to connect your Google+ Authorship to Your Blog {in 5 minutes or less}

About Matthew Capala

Matthew Capala (@SearchDecoder) is a growth-focused Internet marketer and entrepreneur. He is the founder of SearchDecoder, a place for bootstrap marketing ideas for entrepreneurs, Adj. Professor at NYU, Author of "SEO Like I'm 5" and dynamic speaker.

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2 Responses to How to Leverage Author Authority for SEO

  1. Ryan Biddulph July 22, 2014 at 6:26 am #

    Hi Matt,

    Allie’s really shared some gems here. Outreach plays a huge role in cementing your reputation for sure.

    Getting featured on authority sites helps you build your name and brand. We notice authors who write for large audiences; simple as that. Of course their work quality must be up to snuff but if you form beneficial partnerships you can expand your presence quickly.

    Thanks for the share guys. Tweeting through Triberr now.

    Ryan

    • Matthew Capala July 22, 2014 at 3:22 pm #

      Thanks Ryan – did you find yourself on ClearVoice?

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