Today, the Greater Dayton Advertising Association (formerly known as the Dayton Ad Club) made an effort to finally bring it’s members into the year 2003. The speaker was Matt Bailey from SiteLogic- a Search Engine Optimization consultancy.

Matt did a decent job of explaining the power of social media in his alloted 45 minutes- using eepybird’s Mentos/Diet Coke video as a viral example, discussing how Price Rite Photo got destroyed after a bait/switch deal and the Pork Producers failed attempt to slam a breast feeding support site for using the phrase “the other white milk.”

All great stuff- all stuff we’ve been trying to get the ad club to discuss for over 2 years. All the stuff that we’ve been offering in our Websitetology seminars- but, of course, if you aren’t from out of town, you can’t be an expert.

Matt had a hard time coming up with business to business blogs as an example of generating business- yet, had we been the presenter- we would have been able to point to this blog- to show the b-to-b results. I looked at Matt’s blog- and found this bit:

SiteLogic - Marketing Logic » Why are Analytics so Difficult? by Matt Bailey
Building a website requires an understanding of search engines, as search engines are one of the primary methods of acquiring visitors and customers. However, once the search engine’s information requirements are met, the site has to be able to communicate a different message to the human visitor.

We agree- since 80% of Internet use begins in search, search is key. And, once they get to your site- they need to engage. Apparently Matt’s blog isn’t providing him the kind of traffic he needs. We think we know why.

In the Q&A, someone asked if “tags” in a blog are like Meta tags of old- and he answered they weren’t the same- which is true. Metatags were for the machines; blog tags/categories/taxonomy are for the user. He got that straight- but then, he took what I call a Guru Nosedive- he said that he didn’t use them much, they aren’t that important- content is.

WRONG. At least with WordPress, categories are a way to supercharge a search term, by grouping a bunch of posts into a single post. It’s probably one of the most important SEO techniques we teach- but, alas, the Dayton Ad Club people won’t learn that. Their Executive Director still won’t attend our seminar- and is still building sites the old fashioned way.

It was particularly telling of the 2.0 literacy in the room when there was only one other person in the room that knew what the Long Tail was (besides yours truly) and only a handful (including SAA students) had heard of Digg.

If the Greater Dayton Advertising Association and it’s members (and SAA students) hope to survive, they are going to have to do some serious catch-up. Web 2.0 is only the beginning of The Next Wave, and they aren’t there yet.