I'd like to tell you a little story today, and with it perhaps a little education lesson. To begin, I ask you to sit on the floor around this old black and white television...
Saturday August 6, 2011 was Lucille Ball's 100th birthday. Google commemorated the day by changing their logo to look like a 1960s black and white TV with movable channel knobs and a volume switch. On the TV screen the name Google appeared just like the opening credits from the "I Love Lucy" show. The Google doodle was actually a playable TV displaying 6 different "I Love Lucy" clips on each of the channels selected from the movable knob.
Over the last 12 months Google has created some amazing logo doodles. (In case you don't know, each of those unique Google logos are called "doodles.") Some of my favorites are from Earth Day 2011, the Bunsen Burner in March 2011 and, of course, the Epiphone Les Paul electric guitar in June. The TV is the first time they've included video in their doodle.
After laughing once again while watching Lucy and Ethel jump around in a vat of grapes, the Google home page automatically switched to the a Universal SERP associated with the Google Doodle topic. Google always links those daily doodles to special universal search results.
While looking over the SERP on Saturday, I first looked through the press photos that appeared from Google images and then glanced over the page. One of the results on my screen was:
Susan Eisen Library
www.susaneisen.com/.../ArticleSubscriptionDisplay2.asp?... - Cached
Desi Arnaz for Lucille Ball 4. Which of these celebrity couples exchanged plain gold wedding bands, along with their vows in Hebrew? ...
susan eisen shared this
Apparently, I am connected with Susan Eisen somehow. Hovering over her name, a little popup told me "You are connected to Susan Eisen on Twitter."
"Okay, that's interesting," I thought to myself as I clicked the link for the page.
That SERP listing brings us to this page about "Celebrity Proposals: The Quiz": http://bit.ly/oSTLvZ
After reading over the quiz question about Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball I found myself browsing around the susaneisen.com website before I realized what just happen to me... and that it would be good to explain to you as a Nugget.
So, starting from the top... Who is this Susan person and how is it that we are connected?
First I checked out her Twitter account at http://twitter.com/susaneisen
It was a little disappointing to see she only had 25 followers and 4 tweets. Those 4 tweets were confusing at best, spanning random days back through 2009. I assumed the "Celebrity Proposals" page would be one of those tweets.
Since Google told me Susan "shared this" and that we were also connected on Twitter, I assumed the share was on Twitter, but that's not the case because none of those 4 tweets were shared links.
My curiosity was piqued, and if I want to provide an accurate step-by-step process in this Nugget then I needed to keep digging...
So on to Facebook! I went and looked at this FB page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Susan-Eisen-Fine-Jewelry-Watches/119787194701317
But once again I was disappointed because that account only had 27 posts to its wall at the time of this writing. None of the FB posts were shares of the "Celebrity Proposals" page.
Okay, now I'm really curious. Twitter and Facebook are the 2 most popular places where Google could scrape shared information from.
I decided to go deeper. Maybe Susan has a public personal profile, so I looked her up. Skunked Again! I found her profile here: http://www.facebook.com/susaneisen1
but it's locked, which means Google can't publicly see it.
So where did this "Shared Page" about Lucille Ball's proposal come from? It must have been shared through some other service like LinkedIn, Digg, StumbleUpon, Reddit, Technorati, Google+. It's even possible that it was blogged about.
The bottom line is that when I decided to take a stroll down Lucille Ball reruns of memory lane on her 100th birthday, I instead found myself casually strolling through an online jeweler's website.
A seemingly innocuous socially shared web page changed my Google SERP.
This is what caught my attention and sent me on a tangent:
"Desi Arnaz for Lucille Ball 4. Which of these celebrity couples exchanged plain gold wedding bands"
Please give me a little more of your time as I finish up this story. The conclusion is worth it.
That quote is not actually the Meta Description for the page. In fact, the Meta Description was shamefully blank! (A bleeping shame!) However, Google saw the opportunity to show me the Susan-Matthew connection and snip a sentence from the page that included Lucy's name.
On a SERP loaded with photos of Lucy's career and several entries from Wikipedia it was the connection from one of my social "friends" that drew my attention, and I actually browsed the susaneisen.com.
So let's examine this experience and figure out how you can put it to use for yourself.
1. You need a Google Account. Gmail works, but you should create a full Google Profile to include as many associated website accounts as you can think of. This includes Twitter, Facebook, Blogger, etc.
2. Blog. You always make time to do the things you want to do. Make time to blog. Write about anything jewelry related. Trivia. FAQs. Pick a random topic and just do it.
3. Share your blog pages on Twitter, Digg, Google+, +1 Google Button, Reddit, StumbleUpon, etc.
4. Rinse and repeat.
5. Sit back and wait.
And this concludes my little story. The more blogging you do the better your chances of attracting random website visitors the next time there is a random connection. This was a perfect example how the search engines are using socially shared links to influence other people, I think I will call this the "Lucy Effect" from now on, since that's so much easier than saying "add pages to your website and share them socially so eventually you will gain random unexpected website traffic and build a new customer base."
The page on the Susan Eisen website was obviously posted quite some time ago. On Lucille Ball's 100th birthday, I found myself inexplicably drawn to that page above all other pages in the SERP.
This is exactly how the blogging laws of attraction work...The Lucy Effect.
Thanks for reading,
Jeweler Website Advisory Group