Seeing the Light

I found this interesting article on search engine optimization where the author starts out trying to create blogs on a number of American Idol contestants to see how highly he can rank, and discovers that he has the best results with the site that has… the best actual content. He says:

So, while keeping my SEO experiment going, I decided to really “blog” about Bo Bice. In doing so, I learned many valuable lessons about creating a successful blog that can generate sustainable traffic, including many repeat visits.

He even starts to include content contributed by readers of the site. But though I wish it were a neat happy ending, where someone realizes that good content triumphs over all the search engine trickery in the world, that’s not exactly the case. One of the tipoffs comes earlier in the story:

Being that this was an SEO project, I didn’t aim to provide any valuable insights into the candidates… I only planned to “blurb” news articles that mentioned each contestant.

Someday, someone in the SEO industry is going to write a tutorial that says “How to make money by writing about topics that you’re passionate and knowledgeable about.” And there’s lots of folks out there doing that now. But just imagine if someone had actually tried to provide valuable insights?