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Your New SEO Strategy: AntiTrust .. Trust is Social Currency Minus +1

According to Netpop Research — Trust is Social Currency:

Social media is growing in the United States and around the world, prompting Internet users to share an ever-growing amount of personal information. Social media platforms are, of course, in the business of making it fun and easy to share more, and do more, with more people.

But Social Media Networks are having a hard time convincing users to trust them:

Where does the information go? Who sees it? Who owns it? And how is it used? … Findings reveal that the vast majority (80 percent) are uncertain or uneasy about the social sites they use. This is particularly true of Facebook: 85 percent of Facebook users are either uncertain or explicitly concerned. Findings also show that privacy concerns and distrust bear a negative impact on social brands: Users have a significantly lower perception of social brands if they are concerned about privacy or distrust the site to use their information appropriately.  Source

Two words: Ya think? But it gets worse than that.

So if “Trust” is Social Media Currency, how will marketers cash in?

Good Question .. and how will Google +1 figure into the grand scheme of things?

Way to go Google for opening that Pandora Box.

When Google makes it easier to manipulate the SERPS, kindly spare me the condescending propaganda about “TRUST” in .

Google +1 StinksAnother question: How long do you think it will it be before someone invents a bot to +1 all your stuff?

How much would you pay for that?

I’m betting that untold numbers are already getting their family, neighbors, friends and minions to +1 everything in site.

Any takers? So much for honest, original content creators.

With the implementation of +1, Google is intentionally opening the door for the deceptive gaming of search results.

Google is showing it’s true colors, that web search is really just about making money rather than providing honest, unbiased, and relevant search results.

All in the name of supposedly socialising the web.

Like all large mega-corporations, Google’s allegiance is only to it’s pocketbook. Not what is right or wrong. So much for doing no evil.

In a Nutshell: More than ever now, Social Media is about stacking the cards.

But there I go being cynical a realist again.

Here is your new SEO strategy:


Written June 2nd, 2011 by | 30 Comments | Filed under: Blog Ethics, Featured Tips, SEO Tips, Social Media Tips ,

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There are 30 Comments so far to “Your New SEO Strategy: AntiTrust .. Trust is Social Currency Minus +1”

  1. If a system is created that can be gamed, it will be abused by those who have no interest whatsoever in trust. Trust is for people who think in the long term. The typical internet spammer and unscrupulous marketer has little concern about the long term. They are in the locust business of pick up all they can, and them move on. Making the system harder to game, and based on real trust, would be more beneficial to everyone. Once trust in any social media site, and the information in its hands is lost, that site will lose support in catastrophic fashion. That is of little concern to the spammer and unscrupulous marketers, however. They got theirs and the death of any social media platform is of no concern to them. Trust is essential.

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    Reply by: BLOGBloke at 9:48 pm said...

    @Wayne Hurlbert, it seems to me “TRUST” in social media is a just a misnomer. It’s smoke and mirrors to a throw a spin on something that will actually achieve just the opposite. Google, Facebook, and everyone else are creating new ways to game the SERP results. It’s not just the spammers either. TRUST me, the a-list marketers will be abusing this to their benefit. I wish I could be as optimistic as you, but I know from personal experience it’s really not about “TRUST”. More than ever now it’s about stacking the deck to drown out the noise. The “noise” being the honest folk.

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  2. As you well know, I am not what you would call a social media expert, but I have read, I have listened and I have been forming my own opinions.

    I guess I see things from three sides, the everyday person who goes on the net, the business who is wanting to be seen and the theorists who dissect what is going on and form their predictions on the basis of their own research, thoughts and feelings.

    “Social media currency”, what a phrase and in some ways a perfect Marketers question (?- and no offense meant to anyone)

    The best way that I can answer this is from all the points of view

    1. For the everyday person who is going on the net, they are going to go within their frame of reference which means their friends and family. social media currency is going to mean finding things that interest them from answering questions about family, shopping and particular interests. If they see things that will bring them value, no doubt the Facebook likes and maybe the +1 will influence, but I have to say it will be the people who recommend, rather than the number or the “like” itself

    2. Businesses are now going to be challenged to utilize social currency in a way to draw people to their brand. To me, this means using strategies that will bring their brand into the public eye in a way that will have meaning. Easier said than done as you have questioned so well “How long will it be before someone invents a bot to +1 all your stuff?” I have no answers to this except to say that if you have a brand that is worthwhile, people who are savvy in knowing how to strategize then as always that quality will win out…um I guess it also helps to have the money to make this all work?

    3. I am no theorist, but I will tell you what Jesse Stay ( @Jesse) said earlier today “The future of the “like” button will be branded, company-focused buttons that customers can configure where they share”. for some reason this rings true to me

    In conclusion my thoughts on all the “marketers”..they are going to jump on the band wagon in the hopes that maybe they will be noticed without fully understanding of what they are doing and I wonder at times if they care.

    My personal thoughts are slightly different, when you create words or thoughts that come from “you”, then does it really matter who “likes” or “+1″ what you do?

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    Reply by: BLOGBloke at 2:03 pm said...

    @Diane (blogneta), excellent summation Diane but so long as Social Media ranking systems can be gamed, manipulated and/or inflated deceptively I will forever remain a cynic, um .. I mean a realist. ;-)

    I don’t mind so much a social networking website like Facebook upping the ante, but when it comes to search engines I expect better than that. Call me naive or old school if you like but I expect to find REAL, unbiased search results when I’m looking for content on the web.

    Thanks for the comments.

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    Reply by: Diane (blogneta) at 2:41 pm said...

    @BLOGBloke, I honestly did not mean to do a summation, it was one of those times where I just wrote ( happens sometimes)

    I too am a realist, but lean towards being pessimistic on some things, this being one of them.

    Don’t you love the word trust? It makes one warm and cuddly inside. How often have I heard ” Join this” “follow me” “like this song” and now it is +1 me and while I understand it, I do not necessarily agree with it or rather I do not like how it is going to be misused.

    To me, these kinds of “buttons” are the same as link reciprocating and I have noted many are having questions about those as well ( translate -same problem different name)

    Trust in business comes from earning it, by giving value, helping your customers and yes strategy to get your brand noted by those who will use it, whatever it is.

    Trust in any form is about credibility and earning, never to be just given.

    Here is the question at least for me - will I use the +1 button or the Facebook like button? answer I have upon occasion ( +1′d you yesterday) and I have even liked a few things…. something about pushing a button can make one feel all warm and cuddly inside…lol

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    Reply by: BLOGBloke at 3:09 pm said...

    @Diane (blogneta), glad to see that we’re on the same page. If you’re right about the average user not bothering to +1, then my case for abuse by marketers is all the more REAL don’t you think?

    Thanks for +1′ng me btw. I’m feeling the love. :-)

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  3. Several years ago while in a college journalism class my professor showed us a spoof video called “Googlezon”. It was all about how Google was going to take over the world. At the time it was really funny albeit a little disturbing. Now though, after reading this post the memory came back to me and has new meaning. I’ll have to watch it again now. It’s so true that people are increasingly more trusting when it seems that as more and more of our lives are lived online that we should be more vigilant with out information. I took most of my personal info offline but there is a lot out there I know, left over from the days when I was much more naive. When I do consulting work for non-profits, helping them set up their social media policies/practices I always preach about trust - how their audience needs to feel a sense of trust if they are to build a successful following. Now days with as many scams as there are I know that several of the organizations I work with struggle to build trusting relationships with their followers. Google has caused a huge step backward - there will be so many who take advantage of this. I guess I am rambling now but I am just SO ANNOYED! damn Google…

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    Reply by: BLOGBloke at 7:00 pm said...

    @Kristina Summers, you rock girl! I’m pissed too.

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  4. I think relevance is the key factor that matters. It helps in building your trust and increases sales.

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    Reply by: BLOGBloke at 9:25 pm said...

    @Conroy, that’s the point. You can’t have fair and impartial “relevance” when the results are being manipulated. Does not compute.

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  5. The more social sites push the envelope the more people I hope back off from sharing information. Its all about how they can make a lot of money fast and the heck with users that use their service.

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    Reply by: BLOGBloke at 9:26 pm said...

    @Curtis, agreed.

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  6. Hey Blogbloke,

    I enjoyed this article. It reminded me of the book “What Would Google Do?” by Jeff Jarvis. Maybe you have read this already, but he says in today’s world, there is an inverse relationship between trust and control. Give your customers (or readers) control, and they will trust you more. Times are a changin’ indeed!


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    Reply by: BLOGBloke at 12:11 am said...

    @Hugh, no I haven’t read it but I know Jeff is a bit of a rabble rouser like myself. ;-) You build trust by showing trust. You get respect by showing respect. Be paranoid, fearful, or a control freak and you instill a negative response.

    Thanks for dropping by Hugh and your comments.

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    Reply by: Diane (blogneta) at 9:20 am said...

    @BLOGBloke, I replied on Twitter, but would like to say this here ( apologies for being redundant)

    While I kind of agree that you build trust by “showing” trust, I have to say you build trust by earning trust, which takes time but to me is worth that effort.

    You earn trust by giving quality, being real, having credibility,being honest and having the ability to admit mistakes and in business as well as your personal life that is very important.

    When you earn that trust, then by extension you will also be respected and if you momma taught you any manners, you will show respect as well.

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    Reply by: BLOGBloke at 3:36 pm said...

    @Diane (blogneta), good point Diane. We earn trust through example. Trust is earned through positive, affirmative actions .. as opposed to closing the circle and damage control.

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    Reply by: Diane (blogneta) at 10:58 am said...

    @BLOGBloke, you know I was thinking about Hugh, yourself and what I added regarding trust,respect… control which led me along the lines of social media, social currency etc and as they say, things sure are not the way they used to be…at one time you built a business reputation based on tried and true business practices, but with the advent of the net and in particular the “social” aspect on the net, the rules changed and everything became a case of ” look at me”, here I am…come and get me mentality and worse I would say that everything became inflated and not just egos.

    and yet….

    A button is just a button whether it be twitter,Facebook, Google. It is a tool to be used or misused as the case may be and it is up to those who are with ethics to show others by their own actions on how things should be done

    We now live in a time where “real time” tracking has become the order of the day and so those buttons are now important and to fight them is worse than useless it is counter productive.

    Maybe what I am trying to say is that instead of fighting something that is already done, maybe through teaching others, using these tools in a way to bring back ethics and just showing how things are to be done, you, your business, will earn that trust and build respect in everything you do.

    Just my thoughts on this… I have to say thank you BlogBloke, it is through these kinds of discussions you help people like myself form my own stratgies on what I want people to see when it comes to my online presence which will reflect my offline presence.

    Rabble Rouse on dude

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    Reply by: BLOGBloke at 3:47 pm said...

    @Diane (blogneta), as you can see I’m not opting out. I have a +1 button above. Debunking popular mythology and teaching about the use and misuse of technology is what I do here at BLOGBloke. Sometimes to get the point across we must raise the alarm to get attention. I hope I succeeded with this article.

    Thanks Diane, I always appreciate your thoughtful comments.

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  7. Stop hack the program!!!

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  8. I really like this website! I love the content.

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  9. you’ve hit on some great points in your article, especially where bots are concerned.

    In fact I hadn’t considered bots, but when Google +1 button was first released I immediately thought this is something that is just going to get abused.

    Before long i’m sure there will be fiverr gigs offering a particular amount of +1’s on one of your pages.

    and even worse a black market in gmail accounts.

    I think it will be a great SEO strategy but it won’t take long for people to start abusing it.

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    Reply by: BLOGBloke at 12:53 pm said...

    @Adam James, perhaps I should have renamed this post your ‘blackhat’ seo strategy. Google has definitely lowered the bar for honest content creators.

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  10. Trust is Social Currency. Two Words: Ya Think? http://bit.ly/lL04Zu

  11. Netpop Research: Social currency = trust http://ow.ly/59LjU

  12. UPDATED: Trust is Social Currency +1 http://t.co/fdH0HpD via @BLOGBloke

  13. @WayneHurlbert @vaspersthegrate No holds barred. Would love to hear your thoughts -> http://t.co/fdH0HpD

  14. @WayneHurlbert @vaspersthegrate Would love to do a round-table on the ramifications of Google +1 http://t.co/fdH0HpD

  15. Trust is Social Currency +1 http://t.co/xXigrgf via @BLOGBloke an interesting topic and conversation…join in!

  16. Some don't like my stand on Google +1. Lost a few followers overnight. Sorry but I gotta be true to my convictions http://t.co/fdH0HpD

  17. UPDATED: Meet Your New SEO Strategy — Antitrust; Trust is Social Currency +1 http://t.co/fdH0HpD via @BLOGBloke

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