I’ve got to tell you – Wikipedia was aptly named because it’s fast, fast, fast for getting your name in lights. The founder of Wikipedia actually came up with the name while in the Honolulu airport … He asked a gate agent for the fastest route to the other terminal and was told to go stand at the Wiki Wiki stop for the Wiki bus. And, so … history was made.
Wikipedia was created to shuttle information and CONNECT information quickly. It hasn’t missed a beat in that department.
I have a client, Randall Bell, who has worked on several large disasters as an economist crisis consultant. Granted, most of us don’t have this sort of notoriety to start with, but read on – there’s something here for everyone. He already had a profile about himself loaded in Wikipedia . It was my job, then, the other day, to go into several Wiki pages pertaining to disasters he’s worked on and insert him into the editable copy (i.e. the Chernobyl page, the Nicole Brown Simpson page, the United Flight 93 page). That’s the glory of Wikipedia, you see – any page can be edited or added to. You CANNOT delete other people’s work – that’ll get your hand slapped faster than you can say “I stole the cookie from the cookie jar” – but ethical, true additions can always be made.
I spent about 7 hours on the project – and this just for loading his bits and pieces of information where they fit best in the existing page’s structure about this or that disaster. In every instance, I’d provide references and links to his own site, www.Strategy360.com.
Then, I’d also couple his name on that disaster page (say, Chernobyl or United Flight 93) to his Wiki bio page.
Last step: I’d go back to his bio page and create the sentence around that particular disaster, then linking back to the Wiki disaster page. Make sense? It was well worth the effort. In less than 24 hours, Wikipedia was coupling his name with the disasters and Google was finding him on several fronts.
Where can you insert information about yourself on existing pages in Wikipedia? The other strength to Wikipedia is this – every time a site is updated, it “notifies” the search engine robots that something is different. There’s a very big complicated IF-THEN sequence around this, but suffice to say that if you’re consistently updating your web site, you’ll eventually find your way closer and closer to the top of the Google search pages for your niche simply because you’re rewarded for that consistency in updates.
Wikipedia has this market cornered . . . because the site itself is updated more than 18 MILLION times in a 24 hour period, it’s why you usually always see Wikipedia at the top of the organic searches about ANYTHING. You know all that social marketing you’re supposed to be doing on this site or that blog or this community chat board? Always, always remember to look where your leverage is. Start with Wikipedia.
A word of caution with Wikipedia. This isn’t necessarily WYSIWYG text entry. You can’t type in Wikipedia like you would something like Front Page or your blog; it’s a bit more technical than that. Wikipedia provides some easy tutorials and encourages you to play in its “sandbox” to get a feel for how to enter and upload your entries before you start to play in its “real” world. Pay attention, play in the sandbox initially (you’ll save yourself from looking the fool to the rest of the Wiki editors out there) and take your time.
Further, Wikipedia is built to allow others to add to your page and refute items on your page if they don’t think they’re deserved. Be careful, then, to not overstate your position or references. You want to present a solid, no-holes-in-the-dike approach!