First allow me to describe my morning timeline lead-in to this post:
9:00 AM: Buy Blue Bottle Coffee (yes, it is very trendy…but completely legit coffee)
9:15AM: Read my morning email newsletters
9:20 AM: Excitedly but suspiciously open the Marketing Sherpa newsletter email entitled “Wikipedia as Lead Gen” (really excited, I love that kind of stuff…still worried its some bait)
9:21 AM: Bated breath, open How to Use Wikipedia Entries for Lead Gen – 6 Steps to 18% Higher Conversion Rate. Love the title man, I have hope that this going to be a great article.
9:21 AM: Begin reading the article, it is legit. The story of how a technology company, Attensa, in conjunction with its Agency, Anvil Media, was able to use Wikipedia for b2b lead generation. It is a classic Marketing Sherpa study, with the whole scenario set up and real quotes from the Director of Marketing and his agency. The Results were exciting:
- 4% increase in site traffic
- 4% increase in leads overall
- 65 leads per month on average from Wikipedia
- 18% higher conversion rate for Wikipedia traffic
9: 25 AM: I read it and am excited. This is something new I can blog about…really cool innovative stuff.
9:27 AM: I hit the SEO experts I know:
- Funnel: “I have got something you guys have never been able to hit, Wikipedia.”
- Top SEO guy: “No you don’t”
- Funnel: “I’ll send it”
- Top SEO: “Do it, and I bet you $100 it doesn’t work”
- Funnel: “Done”
- Ten Minutes later, TOP SEO via email: “Number One: go look for them on Wikipedia and number two: $100 via Paypal”
9:37 AM: I realize that in my wild excitement, I never checked to see if it was still up on Wikipedia – it isn’t. Then I start to read the comments…comment number 1: Jul 23, 2008 – Gregory Kohs of MyWikiBiz.com says:
“Good luck with future success, now that you’ve exposed yourself and the Anvil Media agency. I have a lot of experience observing what you tried to do here, and I guaran-damn-tee you, this isn’t going to end pretty. Wikipedia is going to decimate your efforts. It’s a shame, of course, but them’s the facts. More discussion on this article at: http://wikipediareview.com/index.php?showtopic=19391”
9:38 AM: Then see comment number 2: Jul 23, 2008 – Gregory Kohs of MyWikiBiz.com says: “You all realize, I presume, that this article led to the complete roll-back of everything Anvil Media and Attensa had accomplished on Wikipedia?”
9:39 AM: I feel bad for Attensa and their agency Anvil Media.
The simple two-step how-two guide to getting slammed by the Wikipedia police:
Step 1: Try to game Wikipedia – Wikipedia is policed heavily to keep spammers out of their kingdom and while I know Attensa would not consider what they did spam, it is to the Wiki-world. And they are watching…
Step 2: If you manage to successfully game them, then publish your strategy and results on the internet – Writing an article on Marketing Sherpa is essentially goading the Wiki-police into putting a match to anything you have done. See Attensa.
The moral can be summed up by the final comment on the article page:
Jul 28, 2008 – Peter of Entra Marketing Ltd. says: “Memo to self – spend more time improving my business, traffic, conversions, and less time telling people (and especially highly trafficked marketing information websites) how I do it :)”