Thursday, September 04, 2008

The Words Don't Stack Up

I now have a capability to search the semantic concepts that describe organisations across the internet. Using http://www.netreputation.co.uk/values, you can join in the fun too.

What it does is to collect the texts in Google news articles, blog posts, website pages, and Google natural search.

Using Latent Semantic Inference, it finds the most to least concepts evident in each corpus.

The theory is that an organisation with a good internet strategy should provide a list of concepts that are similar between these four sources  and offer a coherent view of the organisation, its products and services and their merit in a balance grouping of value concepts.

One might at least expect the web site and natural search (with good search engine optimisation) to have common concepts and that these should at least offer a coherent range of concepts (keywords) that describe the values of the organisation.

Here is the good news.  If you want to describe your organisation get the blog returns... they tend to be really good.  They reflect what even the fussiest marketing man would want to hear. Then try news coverage. Most companies would like that. Mostly, it’s great coverage pointing to a coherent structure of values.

 

From there forward it goes downhill. The website will be pretty, the navigation flawless and the words – completely at sea. Lacking coherence, the offer of the day ahead of company values and one can only feel for the poor visitor trying to make sense of the content in the site.

Well that is pretty bad. Worse is to come. The top ten citations from natural search confirm only that Search Engine Optimisation is, to most people responsible for it, a place of loathed melancholy, where brooding darkness spreads its jealous wings.

The capability of companies to build a coherent internet strategy is the biggest issue facing PR practice today.

The easy bit, where the practitioner has control like the website, is a mess. The part of the internet which can be influenced using SEO is incoherent and yet where there is less control in press coverage and precious little control, in blogs, life seems flawlessly wonderful.