One of the more recent seo buzzwords is PBN or Private Blog Network. This is basically just a new name for a linking scheme or link network. These networks of PBN websites are used to boost the link profiles of other websites or “money sites”.
Linking is a big part of a reputation management and repair campaign for sure, but there is another major takeaway from the PBN or blackhat link network strategy that is really important for ORM deflection campaigns.
Staying off the radar
The video below from GodofSEO, while a bit technical for noobs, gives a pretty good explanation of what PBNs are and why they’re used for search engine optimization.
Make it Legit, or Fail
It’s the fake legitimacy of the individual PBN network websites that keeps them out of Google’s sights and keeps their link juice flowing. Easily traceable footprints and not being able to pass a manual review will lead to deindexing and death for any PBN that is detected.
The perceived legitimacy is what we want to pay attention to for personal ORM disinformation or deflection campaigns.
Passing the buck
The deflection section of the ORM guide talks about using fake blogs for personal online reputation management. This strategy is used as a misinformation campaign to deflect negative attention away from the original target of the negativity.
In ORM, PBN is Persona Blog Network
An ORM PBN is just a network of fake blogs. These deflection “flogs” are all created all using the same persons name but each with a different picture and persona.
These need to look as legit and unique as possible.
I have seen a lot of footprints from poorly done reputation repair campaigns. Boilerplate sites that all look the same, maybe a different color, but the same template. Not only that, but also every person listed on these sites is someone with something to hide. Yeah, some really half-assed stuff from big players in the ORM industry too.
Since the personal flogs we are talking about here are used for deflection and misinformation, they’ll all use the same persons name. ie. John Smith
One John might have a cooking blog, another a sports blog, a photography website, and on and on…
While we aren’t really concerned with an algorithmic penalty from Google, we do need to pass a manual review. And by this I mean a manual review from an employer, recruiter, admissions agent, a new love interest, a potential business partner, ANYBODY.
Otherwise what’s the point?
Follow current seo link network schemes (at the moment called PBN) and pay attention to the latest uniqueness and legitimacy strategies. The blackhat seo crowd is always trying to trick Google and Google is pretty smart. If you can fool the big G, you can fool ANYONE.
As of late, there has been a Google algorithm tweak aimed at penalizing private blog networks, so there are numerous recent articles on avoiding footprints and the Google penalty deindexing wrath.
A poorly done deflection campaign can make reputation problems worse, so do it right. There are many other considerations for running serious ORM deflection campaigns that you can read about in the guide.