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Are Brand SERPs an SEO Ranking Factor?

Jason Barnard has joined Erin on the EDGE again to discuss his new book, The Fundamentals of Brand SERP for Business. Jason, The Brand SERP Guy, is blazing the trail of Brand SERP education and we’re unpacking concepts around this on this podcast as well as the second segment. But, Is Brand SERP SEO? Are Brand SERPs a ranking factor for keyword ranking? We’re covering these questions and so much more in this episode.

Jason Barnard as The Brand SERP Guy, as an Author, and as a Digital Marketer

[00:00:00] Erin Sparks: Let’s turn around and meet this week’s featured guest. Jason Barnard, the Brand SERP Guy, is an author and digital marketer who specialises in Brand SERP Optimisation and Knowledge Panel Management. He’s a founder and CEO of Kalicube that helps clients optimise their Brand SERP and manage those Knowledge Panels. As an author, Jason’s first book, The Fundamentals of Brand SERPs for Business, was published actually earlier this year in January, and he publishes articles on leading digital marketing publications, such as Search Engine Journal, Search Engine Land, and regularly writes for others including WordLift, SE Ranking, Semrush, and Search Engine Watch, Search Engine Metrics, and Trustpilot. My god, he is quite verbose. Jason was on the show in February of last year and wow, so many things have changed. So, welcome to the show, Jason. 

[00:00:51] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Thank you very much. It’s delightful to be here. Thank you for that wonderful introduction. I’m an author. 

[00:00:57] Erin Sparks: You are. That’s why I actually reset my intro and to make sure that the Schema was in a particular priority. Right? 

[00:01:04] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Really? Actually, yes, indeed. Because I wrote the book as partly as an experiment to see if I could become not a musician, which is what Google considered me to be and become an author, without using Google Books. And that was the trick, and we managed it. And it took me two weeks from the moment I changed all of the descriptions about me to become Jason Barnard, Author and Digital Marketer, instead of Jason Barnard, Digital Marketer, bloody bloody blah. Two weeks to get it to switch to author as a subtitle. So, Google now recognises me as an author. And I can take the quotation marks off it as John Mueller told me to do which was absolutely delightful. He said, do take the quotation marks off, Jason, you are an author.

A Little Bit More History About Jason Barnard

[00:01:47] Erin Sparks: All right. So, that’s a great kind of intro into what we’re going to be talking about today. Let me give our audience a little bit of your history, Jason. You were originator of an incredible educational game website for children back in the late nineties. And you got a level of traffic that was unheard of back then. I think you had annualization like 5 million in some way, shape or form, or was that at a monthly basis? 

[00:02:11] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): It was 5 million visits a month, a hundred million page views. A hundred million page views a month, and that makes a billion page views a year. And that’s insane for a site for children aged up to 10 years old.

[00:02:22] Erin Sparks: That’s right. That’s right. And along with that, as you started seeing the results coming from Google, you had some issues on how Google was understanding you, and that’s where you moved off. It was certainly, and we did a lot of focus on the Boowa and Kwala show last episode, the Sparks Family certainly has some connections to that, but this focus that you had on what Google is actually doing and how it’s actually recognising entity, that’s where it all began. You started to experiment on Google and you started to actually feed Google what it was hungry for, data in corroborations. So, this is what I wanted you to further explain to our audience before we really get started.

A Background on How Google is Getting Smarter and Evolving Right Now

[00:03:01] Erin Sparks: But before anything else, I just wanted to set the stage here. We’re witnessing and experiencing an evolution on how communication is actually being achieved right now. I’m not talking about the internet. I’m not talking about search engines. We’re actually starting to understand consumer intent. Before anything else, this is a good deal more ethereal than that. What you’re looking for, why you’re looking for it, what will be your next steps whenever you find what you’re looking for, on top of that, how you want to consume that knowledge.

[00:03:33] Erin Sparks: We’re now in this space of understanding ourselves more and more that the reflection that we’re seeing now, we’re starting to also understand what the machine is doing to be able to enhance that reflection. And now we’re starting to know how to actually affect what we are showing to the rest of the world through Google. Google started with, they’ve rolled out birth. They’ve rolled out the experiment with a mom. And all of these are nuances in the looking glass that we’re experiencing right now. Would you agree with that? 

[00:04:04] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Yeah. Google’s obviously getting smarter. What I love about the whole kind of Google experience, I’ve been around since 1998 and I went to a conference in France with Google, and what was really interesting is they basically had the same all along, which was to understand intent, deliver the answer to the question that you have, and potentially answer the question you didn’t know you had yet. The Star Trek machine being their example, and they didn’t have the technology to do it.

[00:04:35] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And what they’ve been doing is building the technology in order to be able to achieve that goal. So, a lot of the waiting has not been the ideas or the evenly implementation. It’s the technology to actually drive what they’re trying to do, which is big data, big query, and I’ll pay the analysis that they can do. And so, they’ve been held back by the technology that they had and they built the technology in order to do what they wanted to do, which I find phenomenally interesting. I don’t know if it’s important, but it’s interesting.

 Jason Barnard (The Brand SERP Guy) on Experimenting With His Own Brand SERP

[00:05:05] Erin Sparks: It was incredibly important because this was an investment they were making 15, 18 years ago. And in 2012 was the introduction of the Knowledge Panel, which you better believe had a good deal of a back history before it ever got to public consumption. So, we’re actually about to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of the Knowledge Panel. Can you believe that? 

[00:05:28] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Yes and no. And in fact, interestingly enough, I started experimenting on all this stuff in 2013 so pretty much as soon as it appeared. One of the things you were mentioning was my experiments. And the problem was that I was talking to people about being a digital marketer for their company, being a consultant. And when they searched my name, when I left the room, it would show Jason Barnard is a blue dog. No, they would say I’m not giving my digital strategy to a blue dog. So, I had to educate Google to replace the blue dog with digital marketer, Joost de Valk, Rand Fishkin, Search Engine Land, Search Engine Journal, and it took a lot of work. Actually to be fair, I didn’t replace the dog. The dog is still there, but he’s much less in evidence, he’s much less prominent.

[00:06:19] Erin Sparks: You can follow the dog actually through Alice’s looking glass and started to figure out how to actually make you bigger than the dog. Right?

[00:06:31] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Very good point. Yeah. The dog was really famous and I wasn’t, and that needed to be addressed. And interestingly, part of it was educating Google about me, but also part of it was educating Google about the dog so it could differentiate better between them. And make sure that when you search for the dog, you see the dog with me as a small detail in that SERP. And when you search for me, you see me with the dog as a small detail in that SERP. And that’s a really interesting perspective that I hadn’t thought of even though I’ve been doing this for 10 years.

Educating Google Through Associations and Giving It The Confidence It Needs

[00:07:05] Erin Sparks: So, you were starting to manage the elements. But before anything else, at the core of all this is the concept of things. Google is understanding the semantic relationship between things, people, places, things, and piecing together all the relevant information to make up it’s neural picture of how it understands the world, where we’re now finding ourselves charged with the opportunity to demonstrate how much our brand, our services, and our team members constitute relevancy to how Google understands things, and that’s SEO now. It’s no longer strings like we’ve heard in the past. It’s things and all of the elements, the entities that represent our business, our subject matter experts, all have a contributing factor. It’s almost like the players on the stage to be able to create such a relevant argument that they should be seen as it applies to certain concepts.

[00:07:59] Erin Sparks: I actually witnessed something just recently that I was looking at a competitor of one of our clients looking at a particular term, saw their Knowledge Panel, but you better believe I’m seeing the Knowledge Panel of the product, not their product but the concept the device that we’re trying to optimise for. Oh, all right, there it is. There’s a connection between that competitor brand and the thing that Google knows that it actually manufactures, not the product but the actual concept itself. That’s where you starting to see this neural pathway starting to form more and more. Boy, I went on a rant there. But what was I seeing whenever I was seeing those two Knowledge Panels right next to each other? 

[00:08:42] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): It’s association, and you talked about education earlier on. And if we look at ourselves as humans, that’s how we function. Say a word to me. I will have an association with it. Punk Rock, the Sex Pistols, for example, that association is immediate for me because the relationship is very close. I understand the relationship. I understand both entities. And Google’s functioning the same way. If you just imagine that Google is building a Knowledge Graph and that Knowledge Graph is an understanding of the world that the machine has that is similar to the way a human being understands the world, then you’re on the right track of understanding how you can educate Google, how you can teach Google, who you are, what you do and who your audience is.

[00:09:25] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And that’s the trick. Because if it knows who you are and what you do and who your audience is, it can then match your offers to your audience who are a subset of their users, and that is phenomenally powerful. So, you’re looking to teach Google that triplet, who you are, what you do, who your audience is by educating it through the associations that you can demonstrate to it with entities and things and topics that it already understands. And that’s the trick that you were just talking about.

[00:09:57] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): They built that relationship or Google has understood that relationship. And that’s a really good point as well is that we tend to think Google understands all this stuff in it on its own. And I think a lot of the time, it probably understands a great deal more than it’s showing but it doesn’t have confidence. And that’s another point that is incredibly important. Just like with children, understanding is one thing, but actually saying it out loud to people and risking looking silly, foolish, involves confidence in understanding. And what Google is missing is confidence and that’s where we come in.

[00:10:36] Erin Sparks: This podcast is sponsored by Page One Power. Page One Power is an SEO agency specialising in sustainable link-building and strategic content creation. With 11 years of experience, they build over 15,000 links each and every year for their clients. Since 2010, they’ve been offering services such as custom link-building, white label, link-building, technical SEO audits, and content marketing. So visit https://edgeofthewebradio.com/pageonepower and sign up for a free 30 minute consultation. We’re certainly proud to have them onboard as a new title sponsor of this series.

[00:11:15] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): We can clarify, we can build confidence through what you said earlier on corroboration by third-party trusted sources.

Brand SERP, How It’s A Specific Aspect of SEO, and Proving to Google Your Brand’s Expertise, Authority, and Trust 

[00:11:23] Erin Sparks: There you go. There you go. That’s a synopsis of what we’re going after today. We covered Brand SERPs in episodes 393 and 395 with Jason last year. We want to make sure our audience dives into those two podcasts because we really did open it up and understanding the real state that we’re talking about. And we’re going to cover that as well today, but we’re extending our reach into the concept with today’s discussion with Jason.

[00:11:47] Erin Sparks: Brand SERP, just to cover the basis here, is what appears on Google when somebody searches your brand name either your personal name or your brand, company’s name or things to a particular degree, right? Users invariably search brand name and personal names. It’s also very important that when your brand name is optimised, it actually maximises every opportunity on how you can actually control how you’re seeing on Brand SERP. So, there’s a lot of different pieces on the Brand SERP. Brand soup, that would be a wonderful thing.

[00:12:20] Erin Sparks: Brand SERP elements inside of the Brand SERP in the Knowledge Graph includes or features such as Rich snippets, Featured snippets, People Also Ask, I’m going to put a big asterisk on that one because that I think is a incredible facet, Image packs, Local packs, Videos, Knowledge Panels, and Sitelinks. We’re not going to be able to cover all of these. And I do have some optimisation technique questions in our second episode. These elements are not however exclusively tied to the brand. And that’s what I was referencing earlier is that you’re starting to see Knowledge Panels come right alongside brands. And these are Knowledge Panels of what Google knows about the services or the products that you offer that are not specifically your products.

[00:13:07] Erin Sparks: I think Google, as you have more and more rich features in your Knowledge Graph, you’re starting to see the Google anointing that follows a huge value when it comes down to SEO, Jason. So, that’s why we’re the one to talk about is Brand SERP actually SEO, or is this something else that runs parallel to Search Engine Optimisation?

[00:13:33] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Right. That’s an interesting kind of question way of looking at it. I think the Brand SERP is a really specific aspect of SEO. And traditionally, it’s been looked at from an Online Reputation Management problem. So, somebody who has a problem with something that I want on their Brand SERP when somebody searches their brand name, they will try to sort it out, and that was too late in my opinion. You should be looking at this proactively. And generally speaking, when people are looking to solve that kind of problem, they don’t use SEO techniques. And that’s where this is an original approach is I’m using SEO techniques to proactively solve a reputation situation for a brand. 

[00:14:11] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And what it turns out is that reputation situation, when I’m proactively improving my reputation, I’m proactively proving to Google that I’m an expert and authority and a trustworthy brand in my area so that’s E.A.T. And I was talking to Lily Ray about this yesterday. We had lunch in Paris which was delightful.

[00:14:30] Erin Sparks: I would love to be a fly in the wall there.

Your Brand SERP is a representation of Google’s opinion of the world’s opinion of you.

Jason bardnard (the brand serp guy)

[00:14:32] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): It was a really lovely conversation. Our worlds really come together because the Brand SERP is a representation of Google’s opinion of the world’s opinion of you. And that’s Expertise, Authority, and Trust.

[00:14:46] Erin Sparks: Right.

[00:14:47] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): So, it is a really good way to get a window into what Google thinks about you. So, it plays into SEO. And I now say to all my clients, let’s build your digital strategy, not just SEO, but your entire digital strategy from the Brand SERP outwards because Google is showing you in your Brand SERP, what it likes, what it doesn’t like, what it thinks is good, what it thinks is valuable for your audience, what it thinks is relevant for them so, therefore, relevant and it associates with you. 

[00:15:16] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And so, you look at that and you can see where your priorities are in terms of what Google has understood, what people think about you, and what content it thinks is relevant, helpful, and valuable to them. So, I’m now saying, build from the Brand SERP outwards and you can build an amazing SEO strategy but better still, a brilliant digital strategy.

Hitting The Tipping Point By Being Patient to the Child Which Is Google As It Builds Confidence and Understanding

[00:15:38] Erin Sparks: There you go. And the signifier here is you’re not going to see these immediate factors overnight because you still have the confidence factor of Google learning and not wanting to look like a fool by actually providing something that is irregular or out of line. So, there is a threshold moment as you steep Google in and the more and more corroboration to finally, really have the confidence to actually present these type of rich features that we were talking about.

[00:16:10] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Sorry. If I may cut in. I’d made in now because I’m so overexcited. But there is that tipping point and people often think I’m providing all this corroboration, I’m providing this great content, I’m providing information on my side that clearly describes who I am, what I do and who my audience is, and Google doesn’t understand and they get impatient. And what they don’t realise is that the child is understanding slowly and it builds that confidence in that understanding. There’s a tipping point and that tipping point is absolutely magic when you hit it. And I’ve hit it with my Brand SERP and even Kalicube’s Brand SERP is that once you hit that point, you can start playing with it and you can start pushing things up as you want to, and you get control and control that Brand SERP is control of your Google Business Card. And for people searching your brand name to get to your site, your homepage effectively.

Correlation Between Brand SERP Optimisation and SEO Ranking Factors 

[00:17:05] Erin Sparks: Yep. Furthering the question here is a correlation between Brand SERP and SEO. Conventionally or traditionally, SEO has been tracking a particular keyword, branded or non-branded, tracking a particular keyword and getting into the thermal layers of top twenties, top tens, top three positions. Have you seen a correlation between Brand SERP optimisation and those ranking factors? 

[00:17:29] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): What I have seen. So, there’s this guy called Koray GÜBÜR and if you don’t know him, you should look him up, he’s incredible geek so you have to be pretty smart to keep up with him. But what he does a great deal is his Topical Authority and Entity Optimisation. And he talks about this as an SEO strategy and an SEO technique, and he’s done the amazing trick. And I love him and I hate him for it of outranking me for Brand SERP. And what’s interesting there is I am the expert and the person that Google associates most with it. Kalicube is the company that Google associates most with it. And I create so much content around it that basically everything on the SERP when you search for Brand SERP is me or Kalicube or something I’ve created. And I think what happened is a) Koray is incredibly smart but b) Google’s looking for a bit of variety.

[00:18:20] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And so from that perspective, obviously I created the term Brand SERPs so it’s very easy for me to dominate that. But you do see Google’s understanding and the People Also Ask that you mentioned. You put a pin in it or a star on it. And that is one of the keys is when you look at the questions that Google puts on your Brand SERP, you can see what it’s associating with you. You can see both what questions you use or asking which is incredibly useful for you to know, but also, it will put general questions that indicate what topics it thinks people are interested in, your brand will be interested in. And that’s an incredible insight. And I tend to see clients who do great Brand SERPs with great PII on that Brand SERP do tend to rank incredibly well for those terms.

[00:19:13] Erin Sparks: We’re proud to have Site Strategics as a sponsor of EDGE of the Web. We’re pioneers in the agile digital marketing methodology core specialties that we provide a technical SEO, including core web vitals optimisation, Search Engine Marketing, Social Media Marketing, and Management Books on Conversion Rate Optimisation, truly focused on results based marketing that works. We’ve also developed a unique omnichannel media marketing and content curation process as guided by our weekly R&D from our EDGE of the Web interviews. We incorporate the best techniques for our content broadcast strategy and execution. If you’re interested in what we can do for you, just give us a call at 877-SEO-4-WEB or 877-736-4932. 

[00:19:57] Erin Sparks: Very good. And I think along the same vein here as you’re talking about new concepts and new techniques. Diversification, after a period of time, is going to be commonplace for Google as it learns from an authority. It’s going to start representing other brands or other individuals or other entities to also help corroborate and be able to give more information to its audience as its starting to see this, not as a singular concept that’s being reinforced by an agent, but is actually much more of a commonplace or some somewhat mainstream terms. So, you’re going to see more players in your space here.

[00:20:39] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Yeah.

Introducing Jason’s Book Called The Fundamentals of Brand SERPs For Business and The Journey of Writing It

[00:20:39] Erin Sparks: And this is actually a segue into my next topic here. You’ve written a book. This is the first book about this concept, Brand SERP. You actually launched your new book, The Fundamentals of Brand SERPs for Business, in January. We’ve got a few copies right here. Check that out on the screen. You’re on the precipice here. It feels like you’re mapping a new country for us all in SEO, but it is also very certainly a familiar country. We know what we’ve been presented by Google over the last 10 years. I don’t know, like I said, Knowledge Panel was or the Knowledge Graph was actually introduced 10 years ago.

[00:21:16] Erin Sparks: You’re helping us understand how to influence the behavior of Google SERPs in our favor when it comes to, it’s understanding of things. Now, we have been marching up the hill of semantic SEO. We actually understand the concept of structure and corroboration and expertise, authority, and trust. We came out of the golden age of link authority, page authority, and domain authority as the key factors of rank performance. But now, we’re into this new maturation of SERPs and Google’s understanding of not only content, but subject matter. So, in an odd way, it seems like a blue ocean concept that you’re going after, but it’s really not. You’re just helping us catch up to what Google has been doing all the time. This is a neural network that we’re seeing more and more visual representation of then to 10 bluelinks.

[00:22:07] Erin Sparks: So, I guess my question here for you on the book is tell us some of the challenges that you’re facing and faced creating this because it’s not just a book that you’re talking. This is new territory that SEOs need to understand. Where do you find yourself in the, there’s so many different individuals that are contributing in SEO, but you’re unique in this way. Tell us a little bit about this journey. 

[00:22:33] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Right. The book was an incredibly interesting experience. I initially decided to write it as an experiment purely just to see what would happen on Google’s understanding of me and find to get it to switch from musician to author as I said. And it became an incredibly interesting journey in that. I had help from a company called BrightRay Publishing, a delightful lady called Emily who helped me write it. And we started out and I gave her this massive script of it was about 90,000 words. And she worked through it and she tried to make that into a 30, 40,000 word book.

[00:23:13] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And what was stunningly interesting is that what I thought was incredibly clear for any marketer, any brand manager just didn’t make sense. And she went through it and she had so many misconceptions, so many misunderstandings, and it made me realise that I was talking way above everybody’s head. And for me it was incredibly simple and obvious. And for most people, marketers, brand managers, and even a lot of our SEOs, it wasn’t as obvious.

[00:23:42] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And so, we worked together and it was a really delightful experience of making it accessible for anybody. If you understand anything about business, even just your own business, you will understand this book. And we had a test at the end which was her boss. We avoided speaking to her about it at all or showing it anything of the book. And right at the end we gave her the book on the Friday afternoon. And on the Monday, she came back to say whether she had understood the whole thing or not and if it makes sense. And that weekend was one of the longest of my life.

[00:24:15] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And she came back on the Monday and said, makes total sense, I read it over the weekend, I understand it all, absolutely brilliant, and I know now what to do for my business. 

[00:24:23] Erin Sparks: There you go.

[00:24:24] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): It’s not only what she needed to do for her business, for her Brand SERP, her audience searching her brand name or company name or her personal name, but also from a digital strategy point of view. And what’s interesting is BrightRay Publishing have changed their digital strategy according to the book they helped me write which is delightful.

The Rabbit Hole of Understanding SEO and How You Still Learn Something New Every Day 

[00:24:43] Erin Sparks: You’re infectious, man. That’s tough is that I literally interviewed you a year ago and I think we’ve had a nice, a long journey for the last year talking and actually understanding more and more about this. And we’re having a regular conversation about key concepts. And we’re also working together to be able to find our way for our own internal work and improving our Brand SERPs. 

[00:25:09] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): I think one thing you’re half saying that, I’m sorry to interrupt you second time or third time probably, is that a lot of people in the SEO industry think this is really obvious and simple. And I think if you know SEO, it is at its, first, is I ranked number one on my Brand SERP. Job done. But as soon as you dig into it, you see the rabbit holes that you’ve been seeing over the last year, and you see how much insight you can get, how much it can tell you about your own SEO strategy, but your digital strategy, your audience’s opinion of you, Google’s understanding of you, where you’re truly relevant, which of your strategies are working, which ones aren’t. And the rabbit hole, as I said, I’ve been doing this for 10 years and I still learn something new every single day. And I thought, honestly, when I started it like any SEO, I’ve got this sorted in three months. Now, 10 years later, I still haven’t got to the bottom of the rabbit hole.

Mapping The Continuously Learning Brain of Google 

[00:26:08] Erin Sparks: The thing is it’s evolving and it’s moving. It’s a moving target. And again SEOs are familiar with that. It’s choppy waters we see, push and pulls all the time with competitive ranking. But this is another object that we hadn’t had a full echolocation on because it is moving, it’s growing, and it’s creating new associations and mapping new relevancy. And how do you map the brain? How do you map a learning brain? Right? 

[00:26:41] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Oh. I can tell you. I can tell you. I can tell you.

[00:26:43] Erin Sparks: Go for it.

[00:26:43] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Because you said associations and I was going to say earlier on, but now you’ve just given me the great opportunity to talk about it, is you can map Google’s brain, is if you take a Brand SERP and you look at the Knowledge Panel, the information, they you’ve already got the information that it’s understood and it’s sufficiently confident, it’s understood to shout out in the playground if it were a child.

[00:27:03] Erin Sparks: Yep.

[00:27:04] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): But you can also look at the People Also Ask and see which topics it’s associating into which questions. You can look at the Entity boxes at the bottom of a lot of the SERPs and see the associations it has.

[00:27:15] Erin Sparks: Yeah.

[00:27:16] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): You can look for the People Also Search for those are these associations or mine its Rand Fishkin, Joost de Valk, it used to be Andrea Volpini, Bill Slawski. And you can see the associations that it’s making between me and other people. Actually, initially, it was my mother and my sister and it took me quite a while to get rid of them, not that I don’t love them dearly, but I’d rather have Rand Fishkin, Joost de Valk, Bill Slawski, and Andrea Volpini. 

[00:27:38] Erin Sparks: Did you just say that you just got rid of your mother and sister on a podcast? 

[00:27:42] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Yeah, I did. I’m sorry. 

[00:27:43] Erin Sparks: They’re in a box down the basement. 

[00:27:48] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): I’m going to have to prove they’re still alive.

Understanding Through Knowledge Panel Standpoint and The Concept of Filter Pills 

[00:27:51] Erin Sparks: Stoke up there, their brand, their Knowledge Panel, making sure that Google knows, but, yes, you’re absolutely right. You can see those entities at that Knowledge Graph at Knowledge Panel standpoint, but it’s moving, it’s learning. So, it’s also you have to do core sampling on a regular basis to be able to see, okay, what’s now contributing into its level of competence, right? 

[00:28:15] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Yeah. What new understandings has it got. Which new relationships has it seen. And once again you’re right on the nail with what is it incredibly confident about today. And the other interesting thing is if you just look at the Brand SERP. You will see the basic information, the summary of the person or the brand or the podcast or the film or the actor or the musician, any entity that you would search for anything.

[00:28:43] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And in the US right now, they’re doing the Filter Pills, which I absolutely love. And if you’re in the US, take a look at those, search for your favorite actor or a film, and you will see Filter Pills at the top. And for me, for example, if you search, it says Overview, Songs, Videos, Education. I can’t remember what else there is. There’s lots of them. I’ve forgotten some of them. And what it’s doing is saying, I know enough about Jason Barnard Education to be able to show you an entire SERP that’s built just on that or about his songs. I can show you an entire SERP there’s Jason Barnard Songs

[00:29:22] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): And what it’s doing is saying, let’s give you the overview and these Filter Pills will allow you to dig down into more detail. And so if you then look at that from a business perspective, right now, it’s just people and films. But if you think that’s going to happen for companies in the next couple of years, you will search for a company and then you will have, instead of songs, you’ll have products, you’ll have videos, you’ll have CEO and founder, your key people. You’ll have these pills and people will be able to research your company right there on Google. And if you haven’t started to master those multiple vertical Brand SERPs that are driven by the Filter Pills on the Knowledge Panel, in two years, you’re going to be, if I may say dead in the water to come back to my sister. 

[00:30:06] Erin Sparks: Or a piece of cyber driftwood, how about that?

[00:30:09] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): That’s much more polite. Yes, cyber driftwood. But for me, that’s the thing that’s exciting me the most right now. I know that most people aren’t at that stage yet, but managing those different facets of your entity, of your person, your company, your podcast, your film, whatever it might be, is going to be phenomenally important because people are going to be researching you on Google. And if you want Google to show you in your best light, you need to explain to it what your best light looks like. That’s a child, if you’re honest about it, it will believe you and if it’s confident, it will repeat it to everybody who asks. And we use Google because we trust it. People trust Google, explain to Google, get it confident, and it will present you in your best light to your audience.

The Importance of Brand Searches

[00:30:58] Erin Sparks: Absolutely. More and more Google wants consumers to be able to interact with its own Brand SERP, its own SERP factors, and it’s getting in the way of destinations that we are wanting to control. So if you want to go get into this next level of trust that the audience has, you have to manage it at the Brand SERP level because you’re absolutely you’re mapping the kind of the future of Conversion Rate Optimisation as it applies to Search Engine Optimisation because our destination pages are getting fewer and fewer from an actual traffic point. And we have to actually start mastering that discipline of how we control the SERP. 

[00:31:39] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Right. And interestingly, John Mueller talks about pool queries and he said a few months ago, one thing that most companies, brands, marketers, SEOs are overlooking is the vast importance of pool searches and the increasing importance of pool searches. And what it means by pool searches is brand searches. So basically he indirectly telling me I’m on the right boat. Because as you just said, the more people are being informed on Google right up to the point of purchase, the more your brand searches are going to be important because that’s when you’re going to be able to actually make the sale.

Promoting The Book, Interacting With The Audience Through Twitter By Looking For Brand SERP Oddities

[00:32:17] Erin Sparks: Yep. Got to grab a hold of it and certainly grab a hold of the book. It is The Fundamentals of Brand SERPs for Business. And there’s the shot. Have a look at the video as well if you’re listening to the podcast because we have that. We’re actually having a giveaway on this show on this podcast and the second podcast of this interview.

[00:32:34] Erin Sparks: So here’s what we’re going to do here to just give a kind of a exclamation point to the end of this podcast. We’re going to actually have a giveaway and what we’re looking at doing is actually giving away a book as well as an EDGE of the Web hat. If you actually submit some Brand SERP oddities you see out there in the wild, all right, and not just accumulation of a lot different things when it comes down to a misaligned Brand SERPs, but pinpoint out something that’s very peculiar. One particular issue that you’re seeing about a Brand SERP.

[00:33:13] Erin Sparks: And we’re going to have you submit it to #BrandSERPOddities on Twitter. And we’re actually going to jump in there and interact with you. And point out, Jason is going to point out a number of things that you’re looking at, but do a screenshot, post that into #BrandSERPOddities, and we will be sporadically giving that the listener, a book as well as a hat for the winning Brand SERP oddity. And we’re going to have this ongoing so there’s no final date of submission here. And we’ll certainly get a little bit more information about this giveaway on the show page. 

[00:33:51] Erin Sparks: Jason, what are your thoughts about Brand SERP Oddities? You’ve been seeing them and experimenting with them for a while, but you see some weird things all the time. Right? 

[00:34:01] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): Yeah, no, a hundred percent. Brand SERP oddities seems like a strange idea. I think if you haven’t really looked into them. But we have a series called The Daily Brand SERP, and every day, I look at one Brand SERP and analyse one aspect of it. And for me, it’s interesting, it’s funny, it’s strange, it’s important, it’s helpful, it doesn’t matter. But what I learned very quickly is initially I was trying to describe the entire Brand SERP and each little clips will be about 10 minutes long and I wouldn’t have got halfway through all the things I could say about it. 

[00:34:36] The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard): So what we then did was focus on just one small aspect and dig down into that. And you’ll be surprised when you look for the detail, the one thing that’s odd, strange, interesting, curious about it, how interesting just that one aspect is and how many insights you’ll get from it. And so I’m encouraging people to look at one aspect, one little detail, and I love Twitter and I’m so excited to see what people do come up with because we’ve had some stunners, people suggesting things for The Daily Brand SERPs. So I’ll definitely be using this when they do come up for The Daily Brand SERPs. That will be a lot of fun. 

[00:35:12] Erin Sparks: Absolutely. Who knows we actually get into a space, Jason, that we do a quick two minute excursion with us and actually, okay, here’s what was submitted and I’ll post up a video of what we’re looking at and what that really means so we can actually have a cool correspondence going back and forth to the the winners of a particular submission. So #BrandSERPOddities is where we’re going to be receiving all these and stay tuned because we were going to be doing this over the course of months. We want to be able to give away one of these books where a huge champion of what Jason has been doing. And hey, you may even get a nice EDGE of the Web hat out of the mix as well.

Where To Find More About The Brand SERP Guy (Jason Barnard) and EDGE of The Web Podcast

[00:35:52] Erin Sparks: All right. So for that, we want to make sure that you listen to the second part of the Jason Barnard interview by visiting https://edgeofthewebradio.com/. Follow Jason on Twitter @jasonmbarnard and follow us on Twitter @EdgeWebRadio as well. Thanks to our sponsors. Make sure that you check out the must-see videos and much more over it https://edgeofthewebradio.com/. 

[00:36:17] Erin Sparks: If you can’t wait, we have the entire video in our YouTube channel, just search EDGE of the Web. Be sure to like, subscribe and share this podcast with others because hey, sharing is caring and rate this podcast as well https://ratethispodcast.com/edge. Let us know about what you thought about this podcast and how we’re doing on the show because that’s the best way that we can fuel the algorithm and also learn from our audience. So rate this podcast.com/edge. From all of us over at site, be safe, be well, and don’t be a piece of cyber driftwood. We’ll talk to you next week. Bye-bye.

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