A summer interview with… Mel Carson (@melcarson): “Discoverability + Shareability”

A summer interview with… Mel Carson (@melcarson): “Discoverability + Shareability”

27th July 2010

There are many great search-experts out there. We decided we wanted to give some extra attention to some of them. Therefore we will be interviewing some of these experts. During the entire summer you will be served with short interviews with influential people in the industry. You will be seeing interviews with the likes of Joost de Valk, Marcus Tandler, Chris Sherman, Mike Grehan and Danny Sullivan, and off course our bloggers! Be aware that some interviews will be published in the newsletter!

Today: he travels the world speaking the Microsoft language: Mel Carson

1- Can you introduce yourself in one paragraph?

My name’s Mel Carson and I run the Microsoft Advertising Blog which aims to evangelize digital marketing to the masses including display, mobile, games advertising, research and best practices. I helped set up the Microsoft adCenter Blog which my colleague Carolyn Miller still heads up. The entire Microsoft Advertising Community site is a hub which provides service and support right across search and other audiences. I also set out our strategy for 3rd party channels like @adCenter & @MSAdvertising on Twitter & our Facebook Page.

2- What are you doing this summer?

Well I’ve just back from the Cannes Lions International Festival which we sponsor. Check out all the coverage and videos here. We cover a lot of events throughout the year. 45 in the last 12 months. They range from search conferences like SES and SMX, digital days and social media get-togethers to huge affairs like Ad Week in New York.

Also spent an afternoon a couple of weeks ago in the company of Hugh Grant, James Nesbitt, Tim Henman and Dougray Scott at the latter’s charity event which Bing sponsored. Fun video with interviews with the stars here – Leuka Mini Masters 2010

For the rest of August I’m in London playing cricket or in Seattle catching up with the team on our plans for the next year.

3- What is the most hottest subject in search at the moment, what should every SEO be looking into?

Has to be the Yahoo! Microsoft Search Alliance – www.searchalliance.com

I’m very pleased to see more and more press and blogs talking about how important it is to get ready for this switch. There’s a huge amount of work going on to make the transition as smooth as possible and coupled with the new Bing Webmaster Tools update, we hope it shows our total commitment to the space.

I’ve been talking about adCenter and search for 5 years at Microsoft and I don’t think there’s been a more exciting time.

4- What do you think is the “state of search” at the moment, is the industry doing good?

Yes, but I’d like to think it’s going to get better with the alliance. All the feedback I’ve had over the years is that people like our search traffic and they like our tools.

A more consolidated market has to be good for the industry. As SEMs & SEOs now have a critical mass to work with, it’ll help us create more relevant results both in paid and natural.

Better scale and relevancy means better ROI for everyone, so it’s win/win all around.

5- What is your favorite website, apart from your own?

Bing Maps – awesome Twitter, Photosynth and Foursquare integrations plus a load of others apps. Read my review. I can waste hours on there!

6- Can “social marketing / media” and search survive apart from each other?

Nope. They’re inextricably linked. I wrote a white paper on how our team aims to make content discoverable and shareable right across the web. “Social Media” are the tools and “Social Media Marketing” is the discipline, the mantra we should all live and work by in this social age.

Content is no good if no one can find it, and not as effective as it could be if people can’t share it.

Discoverability + Shareability.

Print it in big letters and stick ‘em on your wall!

We also did a study with the IAB in the UK on Search & Social so check that out too.

7- What’s your search tip for the summer?

Seriously follow Carolyn and Tina’s work on the adCenter Blog and follow them on Twitter.

Check out the new Bing SEO Tools and get ready for the www.SearchAlliance.com switchover! Also check out the Search Alliance Video which spells out the deal and what it means for marketers.

Mel was a guest on the State of Search radioshow on webmasterradio last week. Check out the show here.

Written By
Bas van den Beld is an award winning Digital Marketing consultant, trainer and speaker. He is the founder of State of Digital and helps companies develop solid marketing strategies.
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