Scribe SEO – My Review of Brian Clark’s Scribe Service

You may of missed it – but a couple of week’s ago Brian Clark – of Third Tribe Marketing fame – launched his latest money-making venture- Scribe SEO.

What Does Scribe Claim To Do:

From their own site they make the following claims – enrolling in Scribe SEO will have the following benefits to you the would be SEO copywriter, blogger or affiliate marketer:

  • hit the keywords you are after
  • employ SEO best practice
  • it the keywords you are after
  • produce optimized traffic faster
  • increase search and social traffic
  • remove SEO guesswork
  • retain maximum readability
  • optimize faster
  • balance keyword usage

Sounds good right? And frankly I understand the appeal – I spent quite a long time considering myself  incompetent at SEO – I thought it was really, really hard and technical and even though I thought I was technical I didn’t GET SEO. So I see where there market is at. I thought writing SEO Titles was a Dark Art. I didn’t know what a keyword was – I may have been very likely to jump at this tool.

What is Scribe SEO?

At the time of writing Scribe SEO is using WordPress plugin technology. Later releases will extend the functionality to work within Drupal, on any website and integrated with Microsoft Word.  The Scribe technology basically analyses your WordPress post (or page) and returns the following information:

  • whether title is the right length and contains your keywords;
  • whether your metadescription is the right length and contains your keywords;
  • whether your content is the right lenght and had the correct keyword density
  • determines what your keywords are and makes suggestions about changing your titles and tags to better reflect this.

The product walk thru is here - note the promised search volumn appears AWOL in the current release.

I am testing Scribe using Thesis with the standard Thesis options installed. Scribe also claims to work for the common and free All-In-One SEO plugin and the Headway framework.

Scribe SEO is a only about 20% of Search Engine Optimisation

Reading Scribe SEO’s copy you would think that Scribe SEO was all you had to run to get you to the top of the search rankings. But its only part of the story – and a I small part of that:  particularly if you are a new blo0gger which is their target market.Scribe SEO only addressing on-page SEO, the far larger part of SEO is off-page SEO otherwise known as backlinks. I could write about Backlinks but I will just send you over to Allyn’s How to Get Backlinks. If your site is new and lacks authorities you need lots of backlinks!

What Scribe Claims to Do

You install the Scribe plugin in the normal manner. Write your post – fill in the custom title and description fields.

Once you click the analyse tab you will get a big SCORE and a list of rules. For the purposes of illustration I have run this analysis over my post comparing Third Tribe Marketing and The Keyword Academy Now that was a deliberately optimised post so I was curious to see how SEO Scribe would do – oops major fail!

  • to run the analysis you have to copy your title down into the custom title box and also fill in the meta description. I rarely do either – my post title is usually my custom  title and the meta description I stopped worrying about ages ago because Google ignores it and makes its own anyways; UPDATE I think I was a bit wrong on this – Google seems determined to use the meta description I wrote for this post – I have just changed the description slightly to see if Google will recongise that and added a video at the end of this post which describes Google’s current position.
  • I got a 73% score – I was failing on not having my keywords at the start of the title – odd because there were 2 main keywords in the post according to me “Keyword Academy” and “Third Tribe Marketing” and they were both in the title – they are both in the title because that tells Google what the post is about. Oh they are also in the tags which helps Google out too. Unfortunately it didn’t help out Scribe because when I checked out the keywords that Scribe thought I was writing about it came out with this:

Scribe’s analysis of lissowerbutts.com/third-tribe-marketingkeyword-academy-review-membership-sites-help/

  • (If you can’t read the screen shot the main keywords in order are: keyword, marketing, academy, month, paypal, internet marketing, business)
  • Now those are not the keywords I optimised for – most of my keywords are at least 3 words long – and what’ more importantly – they are not the keywords Google understood my post was about and for which it sent me the following traffic to that post, over the past month:

Google Analyticss Data for the same post for the last month

  • (If you can’t read that the main keywords which brought traffic to this page are: third tribe marketing, the keyword academy ,lis sowerbutts, third tribe, the keyword academy scam, third tribe marketing review, third tribe, inurl: income “this site uses keywordluv”, the third tribe book review, third tribe review)
  • In fact even SEO quake (which is free) did a better job for analysing my keywords – but its not really that difficult – read the title!
  • SEO Quake also points how many outgoing links I have on the page by distinguishing between internal and external links and my counting the whole page including  related posts, comments, sidebars and footers. Scribe SEO only counts the links in the actual post without distingushing between internal and external. Check it your self you’d be surprised at how many links that page has – far more than the 5 that Scribe found.

Scribe SEO will do a worse job of telling you what your keywords are than the many free tools out there.  Or look at where you search traffic is coming from and write more on those keywords. Keywords aren’t a science – they are an art. Google is very,very good and doing a very sophisticated analysis – it knows that two terms “scribe” and “seo” together describe a different keyword “scirbe seo” – but  that same-titled product doesn’t itself recognise that this post is about it! Instead it said my keywords for this post were “SEO” and “Scribe” – which of  course they are not.

Keywords aren’t hard. They are you “USP” or “elevator pitch”. If you are writing about “house buying in New Zealand” than its likely that a good keyword would be “house buying in Wellington” (one of our cities). If you are writing about house buying than home buying may come up as well as will “how to purchase a house” and even “should I purchase a house or flat”  Ask a customer what they think you do.  Brainstorm some more ideas – throw these into the free Google Adwords tool – voila more keyword phrases than you have time to write blog posts about.  Captitalisation doesn’t matter ACDC is the same as AcDc. Punctuation doesn’t matter “lissie’s passive income” is the same as “lissies passive income”. Plurals do matter “dance” is  different from “dancing” and “dances” – closely related however  – once you rank for one it will b e easier to rank for the next one- but different none the less.

Scribe Review Price Point

Brian Clark is not afraid to charge a lot for his products and services – Teaching Sells is a good example of that. However his pricing for his latest offering staggers belief.  All of this information is available for free – there are some fantastic free sites and  browser plugins which will give it all to you.  You only need to learn how to do this stuff once – after that it becomes easy to do. I know you may be not at  that point yet – but I will start a short list of useful resources at the bottom of this post and I am sure my readers will chime in with more. Before someone  screams – but its all in one -place – yes it is but the keyword analysis doesn’t work – so 80% of the results which are dependent on that are flawed too.

The pricing for Scribe SEO is at the time of writing:

$27/month for 30 evaluations in the month – that’s 30 presses of the “analyse” button not thirty posts or pages;

$47/month for 120 evaluations in the month

$97/month for 300 evaluations in the month

There are no refunds – you can cancel during the month to stop your credit card being debited. There is a however a free 5 evaluation trial – which is what I used for this review.

Lissie’s Scam Call

Is Scribe SEO a scam? – NO it appears to be trying to do what it claims.

Is Scribe a good product? NO – it appears to be very light on features for the price offered. The core of the product’s functionality is the keyword analysis and this appears deeply flawed 2/10

Is Scribe SEO worth the money? – NO its extremely overpriced for what its offering. 0/10

On-Page Optimization For Free

I am planning a more detailed post on on-page optimisation (for free) but if you have your favourite free tools drop me a note in the comments. I like

Google Adwords for search volumns and giving you related keywords

EzineArticles.com guidelines for Article Titles

SEOQuake for keyword density, keyword analysis, whois easy link and estimate of keywords you are ranking for (not all sites)

Update on MetaDescriptions

There was some discussion in the comments re the usefulness or otherwise of metadescriptions – below is Matt Cutts on the subject. For those who don’t know Matt – he is commonly considered Google’s unoffiical, official spokesman on all things search.

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220 Responses to “Scribe SEO – My Review of Brian Clark’s Scribe Service”

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  1. Ken Rice says:

    Hey Lissie,

    I was sort of interested in this service, but as a monthly subscriptions with limited analyses, I thought it was quite pricy. Plus, as you said, we can make things better by hand, and information is available for free. In fact, Brian himself has already written (for free) on the subject:

    http://www.copyblogger.com/magnetic-headlines/
    http://www.copyblogger.com/seo-copywriting/

    I’m simply using a plugin that reminds me of everything I need to work on a page before hitting the Publish button. Here it is:

    http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/pre-publish-reminders/

    It’s free.

    Users can make their own reminders. My list goes on reminding me to fill in a good title, metadescription, keywords, add tags, choose the proper category and so on.

    If you want to avoid yet another plugin on your WP install, you can simply use a POST-IT to do it all for you. No need to upgrade anything or worry about incompatibilities.

    Best,
    Ken

    • Lis says:

      Hi Ken – yup – those links pretty much cover it ! I had no idea there was a WP plugin to replace post it notes – but I’m not exactly surprised at it!

      • Ken Rice says:

        I had no idea either, but I searched for one when I heard about the launch you just reviewed.

      • Brian Clark says:

        Lissie, a quick review of your archives shows you attacks everything I put out, so I’m not sure anyone but your 367 fans will view this as objective.

        SEO experts like Rae Hoffman, Michael Gray and Stephan Spencer have reviewed the Scribe technology, and they give a thumbs up. Much more credible sources than you given the topic.

        Also, I read your meta description of this post, and it says the opposite of your on-page conclusion regarding “scam.” I’d advise you change that, or our next conversation will be about libel.

        • Lis says:

          Brian, perhaps instead of issueing threats it would be more helpful in the conversation if you addressed the concerns I raised about the product – particularly its inability to correctly identify multi-keyword phrases? I’m not claiming to be an SEO “expert” – just a practioner.

          • Brian Clark says:

            You’re just wrong about the ability to identify multi-word keyword phrases. Just like you’re wrong when you tell people that links in sidebars count as much as in-content links. You’re just ignorant and dangerous when it comes to SEO. I feel sorry for people who take your advice on anything.

            And as far as threats go, no threats. Just a promise. You can attack me based on your misguided opinions all you want, but this is twice now you’ve crossed the line into defamation (the first was your Teaching Sells “review” where you defame the course even though you never joined or saw the content). I’m uniquely positioned not to take abuse that crosses the legal line from you, and you’re about to find out what life is like in the real world of business.

            • Lis says:

              Well Brian I posted the proof above in the screen shots above – the software did not correctly identify the keywords which Google had correctly ranked me for. As I mentioned before I didn’t say sidebar links have equal weight.

              On a side note I notice my subscription to Third Tribe Marketing was just cancelled – strange I thought as I have never broken the TOS of the forums and never commented about Scribe SEO at all on the forums.

              • John Sullivan says:

                Hi Lis stopped over from Sire’s post and that is not surprising you got Banned,I had a slight disagreement one day with BRAGagain Brogan on FB man in two secs he unfriended me and then carried on the convo knowing I couldn’t respond on FB and he smooth it over to his FANS.So I followed it up with a post titled Chris Brogan You are THAT GUY YOU GOOF :)
                The bottom line is I have been HIP to these snake oil types and have no respect for them :) Nice work
                Fan # 399 ;)

                • Lis says:

                  That’s a brilliant post – I was forced to add the link for the benefit of readers :-) Yeah I am getting the distinct feeling that some of us are rocking the house of cards! Welcome to the blog!

            • Allyn says:

              Interesting here Brian, are you going to set case law based on a meta description? Would you go a step further and look at anchored incoming links as libelous?
              What if she had Adsense here that targeted “(your name here) SEO scam?” … would you sue the advertisers or Google?
              Looks like a slippery slope here man.
              instead, you should use this as a moment to shine. Use your social skills to turn the tide. I know that is tough, but you can do it if you try, I have faith in you buddy. It’s a teaching moment for you and many others … Many of us besides her 367 readers are watching and learning by your actions. We want to see you use your many many many years of business experience to help a customer, not take her to court.
              AL

              • Lis says:

                Yup interesting approach to the use of meta-descriptions – certainly unique in my experience :-) Still waiting to hear what exactly is wrong with my critique of the software’s ability to determine keywords ….

              • Matt says:

                This is an excellent comment. It definitely doesn’t look good when a business person is more interested in addressing possible “libel” and any money they are losing as a result, as opposed to better serving their customers and improving their services/products.

                • Not a Scribe says:

                  Well said Matt. I was reading the review that Lis made all the while thinking that I might still give SEOScribe a go, given I had it book marked as a possible source for SEO optimization. And even while Lis made some good arguments, I was going to try for myself until I read Brian’s comments here and well *no fucking go* Brian. Your aggressive, insulting tone has totally turned me off and I have promptly deleted your site from my bookmarks.

                  It’s reviews like this that most honest IM’rs are looking for and have a hard time finding amidst all the bullsh*t affiliate review postings out there, and even with reviews like this, honest intelligent people won’t be completely swayed. These reviews are amongst a variety of factors that go into making a decision. But when a business owner goes and does what Brian did here, in the most unprofessional manner, he’s lost all credibility.

                  Sayonara Copy Blogger and SEO Scribe…not a penny coming your way, and all because of YOUR actions.

              • Brian Clark says:

                Anything that’s a lie that’s published is libel. A meta description is published in Google. Slam dunk world-wide libel.

                • Rob Sellen says:

                  Really? I think it is a rip off!! Is that libel?

                  Opinion is not a lie…

                  I think you are a bully.. is that a lie?

                  Come on Brian, you are an ex lawyer, surely you can see the futility of this argument?

                  Why not actually PROVE it does work,whatever, instead of “flexing your bullying muscles”?

                  MY opinion is you are a bully… is that a lie?
                  Shit.. so sue me!

                  • Dirk says:

                    Brian,

                    Is scribe being improved to detect multiple keyword phrases?

                    Are you working on that or is the product final?

                  • Not a Scribe says:

                    Maybe he’s an ex lawyer because he was no good at it? Apparently he’s not so good at the SEO thing either, and certainly not good at accepting criticism and responding by making his
                    product/service better – so not a great business man.

                    Does that qualify as a slam-dunk Brian?

            • Uh Oh Brian Clark says:

              Making threats to someone who gives an honest opinion about your product just because you don’t agree with her huh Brian? You wouldn’t try that if someone like John Reese (for example) posted the exact same thing that Lis did. You’re just trying to throw your weight around and quite frankly it looks really bad for you. Not good business at all.

              • Brian Clark says:

                It’s not opinion, it’s a lie. Scribe is not a scam, that’s why Lissie doesn’t dare say it in the post. Honest opinion is not something Lissie has ever produced.

                But the meta description where she lies gets published in the SERPS. And I noticed it because it’s already been published in Google alerts.

                “Publishing” is all that’s required for a libel case… no new ground to break there. I can take everything Lissie owns, which is nothing.

                • Allyn says:

                  Interesting your selective reading/reply to my comment. What about this part:

                  “instead, you should use this as a moment to shine. Use your social skills to turn the tide. I know that is tough, but you can do it if you try, I have faith in you buddy. It’s a teaching moment for you and many others … Many of us besides her 367 readers are watching and learning by your actions. We want to see you use your many many many years of business experience to help a customer, not take her to court.”

                  Guess you have no retort for that? You are guilty of weakened customer service?
                  Again, we are watching and learning.
                  AL

                • Lis says:

                  Actually honest opinion is always what you get here – not necessarily politcially correct opinion, jeeze sometimes I’m even wrong – but it is indeed honest as it is indeed my opinion.

                  Brian you have your name associated with ethical marketing and developing online communities and you behave like this?

                  My teaching sells review was indeed my honest opinion of your product (or one very similar) did indeed make me give up on making money online for a while. That’s the truth – because its my opinion its my truth – you can’t argue that as a lawyer (which I think you are by training?) or as a blogger – my reality is my truth.

                  And please as a non-lawyer I don’t understand why would you pay for legal action if you think you will get no recourse?

                • Mitch says:

                  Wow, you’re way off base here.

                  First, her title is no different than millions of others one sees on the internet; you think all those folks go around suing?

                  Second, she answered the question in her post, and she said “no”; did you miss that?

                  Dude, you’ll lose this one; want to debate law?

                  • Sam says:

                    “First, her title is no different than millions of others one sees on the internet; you think all those folks go around suing?”

                    Just to answer that question: they can sue but they don’t because it’ll cost too much money.

            • Rob Sellen says:

              Wow,

              Brian, you are a bully, in my opinion.

              Maybe it’s not a scam, but sure is a rip off!

        • Dave Starr says:

          Hi Brian. Couldn’t help but note the reaction from you compared to the last guy which Lizzie reviewed and semi-panned. He addressed concerns and fixed them, while you go into attack mode like a petulant child.

          In my opinion your product is a scam. It make promises which you offer no proof for, using outdated techniques and your obvious over-reaction to criticism tells me that it is not a product worth buying. So, do you want to sue me also? Just email the address to this comment and I’ll be glad to resond.

          The truth is virtually always a good defense against libel, but I am sure you can find a solicitor/lawyer willing to take your money so you can give yourself an even bigger black eye.

          Dropping Lissie from your elitist (perhaps even racist (again, IMO)) Third Tribe program was indeed a nice PR touch. The program that can’t stand up against the mildest criticism … you guys really have a thin skin over there it seems.

          By the way your count is way off, my membership card says I am Lissie’s 398th fan.

        • Mariam says:

          I actually went back into your archives today and read the reviews.

          It’s interesting to see the progression of the products. First, there was Teaching Sells and their “screw Google” attitude. Then there was Third Tribe that … frankly, I still don’t know what it’s about. A place to network? Finally, there’s Scribe SEO. It seems like the pendulum is swinging back towards search engines now.

          You have to hand it to him though. He’s hit on every market.

          • Lis says:

            Diversification is key in any business I guess – you missed that Chris is the marketing side of the Thesis theme by Chris Pearson as well. Although the Third Tribe marketing blurb condems that hard core marketers who release each others products usually wiht their own affiliate links – the A-list bloggers, and particularly Brian do the same thing- I think Teaching Sells is Brian’s own product but the others are all joint ventures I suspect.

            What you’re pointing out Mariam that this can lead to some brand confusion

        • Chris says:

          “or our next conversation will be about libel” this one line alone is all I need to avoid buying this product. It tells me a lot about the mentality of it’s owners.

  2. Dave Starr says:

    There we go again … one of the reasons I was predisposed not to like the Third tribe concept was Brian’s sort of ‘talking down’ relationship with most ‘common folk’. He is at least one of the folks who obviously thinks he walks a lot taller than the ordinary person.

    That’s fine, but anyone who spends $97 a month to reinforce that feeling of his deserves what they get.

    Meta descriptions for SEO … in 2010? Impossibly out of touch. Sigh.

    • Lis says:

      Hi Dave – the pitch is that SEO copywriting is really, really hard – so I will build something to help with that. In intend to show its really, really easy in my next post and any idiot – even me – can do it!

    • Brian Clark says:

      Meta descriptions are used by search engines as the descriptive copy below the title in the results. It’s important in getting the click.

      SEO copywriting is not just about ranking. But you know that, right?

      • Lis says:

        Unfortunately in my experience search engines often make up their own meta description for your pages.

        • Brian Clark says:

          You don’t have any experience. You’re a fool leading fools. Thanks for the documented evidence I will never link to (in case that’s what you’re hoping for).

          • Allyn says:

            Smart play big gunner… insult the readers here. Did you learn that in Third Tribe marketing school post #1334 ?
            ROFL @ you BC.

          • A Fool According to Brian says:

            Careful who you call a “fool” there big guy. I’ve been a full-time and very successful internet marketer for the better part of a decade. Almost 9 years actually. I’ve got countless websites ranked on page one of Google and other search engines in some of the most competitive niches on the internet as well as hundreds of less competitive niches. And I would bet my ass that they rake in a hell of a lot more money than copyblogger or any of the other sites of yours that I have ever seen. I also had a popular blog long before “blogging” was ever the cool thing to do. With that being said, I still read what Lis has to say because she tells it like it is not because I am a “fool” as you so professionally put it. I think the real fools are the ones who blindly follow you and your other hyped up useless blogging buddies (who I quit listening to long ago) just because you pretend to know what you are talking about! Yep that’s my opinion. I guess you can sue me too!

            • Lis says:

              LOL – now if we are talking dancing fools I’m OK with that (thought I dance it as a quickstep not jazz) – personally don’t really care what i’m called – but it would have been nice if some of my quetsions had indeed been answered!

          • Rob Sellen says:

            The fools, are the suckers being ripped off by you!

            • Lis says:

              Getting back to the meta descriptions – it seems they are somewhat back in favour with Google – I added the Matt Cuttt’s video to the post above for peoples informaiton.

              • Dirk says:

                Lissie,

                Thanks for the meta description video. It refreshed my understanding of the meta description.

                Search Engine does what it wants.LOL

          • Jordan says:

            Hi Brian,

            I’m not here to bash you. However, there is one thing I have noticed about meta descriptions. The only meta description that actually gets showed as-is on my site is the home page description.

            I have a website with an integrated blog and forum. All-in-one-SEO is installed on my blog and I can fill out meta descriptions all day long. However, when I look at the posts on Google, the meta descriptions have been filled in with whatever Google thinks is relevant.

  3. Lec says:

    Get rid of post-it notes – that is a step too far! :)

    Thanks for the info Lissie, this is such an over-priced plug-in and limiting the number of evaluations beggars belief, its hard to believe anyone would really go for it.

    • Lis says:

      To be fair its not really a plugin – they are using the plugin technology to allow their api to communicate with WordPress – but even it was working well its way too much cash

  4. Allyn says:

    ALL NOOBIES READ THIS AGAIN from the post:
    Lis says…
    “Captitalisation doesn’t matter ACDC is the same as AcDc. Punctuation doesn’t matter “lissie’s passive income” is the same as “lissies passive income”. Plurals do matter “dance” is different from “dancing” and “dances” – closely related however – once you rank for one it will b e easier to rank for the next one- but different none the less.”

    That there my friends is some of the best “free” copywriting info you can get and it was just a couple sentences.
    Anyway, as far as this SEO Scribe thing: I personally have never had an issue with SEO copywriting. I write naturally for my posts and then just before I hit “publish” I go back and throw the keywords into a couple places if needed, make them BOLD and then walk away.
    As you mentioned Lis, it is the anchored backlinks pointing TO the post that really tell Google what the page is about.
    Do you know how many pre-owned PR2 or PR3 domains I could buy with $97 per month?
    Hmmm… wonder where the money is best spent?
    AL :)

    • Lis says:

      Ah sheeze Allyn – I blew it didn’t I – should have padded out that paragraph to a 97 page ebook and charged $97.97 for it! Darn!

      • Not a Scribe says:

        Nah, you should give it away and then transcribe it into a power point presentation and add some graphics and talk about your experiences for a while to make it a $97.00 upsell… you know “adding value” ;)

  5. I wonder about the folks who will go for this but don’t know how to find a keyword in the first place. Is that the intended customer? Wow.

    • Lis says:

      Yeah the idea is that you can write “naturally” and not have your “flow” itnerrrupted by SEO! I used two rite natural like too – but no fella Could comprende moi – so I had to use some English grammar and spell check. I wish English grammar was a simple as SEO!

  6. FrazzledMom says:

    Nice review. I had wondered what the tool would be doing that the SEO plugin didn’t. It’s good to know what it is trying to do and where it comes up short.

    Thanks for the thorough and helpful review.

    • Lis says:

      Yeah I used to be part of my J.O.B to review software against user requirements – this type of product is extremely easy to review when you figure out what they are actually providong for the user experience!

  7. Another great review Lis! Of course, I wouldn’t buy it anyway since I already know we can do everything it does very easily for free. But it’s still nice to hear what it’s all about from someone I trust.

    Btw… I believe this is the first time I have commented here using the URL/email that I used, so if you could add it to your “approved” list that would be great. I am sure you know who I am.

  8. Tiffany says:

    I had not heard of SEO Scribe as I guess I am out of touch with Third Tribe Marketing but this just goes to show even more why I have nothing to do with them. That is an awful lot of money to be dropping every month when you can use free tools like the ones you mentioned that actually appear to work better. I can think of plenty of other things I can spend that money on rather than a tool that doesn’t really do it’s job.

  9. John says:

    Lis – As I am using Scribe for about two weeks now, I am seeing some of the things you covered like the “scribe” and “seo” example. I will say that it has taught me several things that I was doing wrong like not including enough links in my articles. I think that I am starting to pay attention to more about how I write than in the past.

    As time goes on I may not keep my monthly subscription but plan to give it a few more weeks to convince me.

    Thanks for the review.

    • Lis says:

      John, Scribe is severley undercounting the number of links on the page because its only counting those in the actual content – not those in the sidebars, headers, footers of your site.

      • Brian Clark says:

        That’s just wrong. In-content links are weighted much more than sidebar, etc. links. But then again, you still think article directories pass link juice for keywords in 2010. So at least you’re consistently wrong.

        • Lis says:

          I didn’t say they weren’t Brian – I just said that the in-content links weren’t the ONLY links counted by the search engines on the page

        • Rob Sellen says:

          Brian,

          You got PROOF about that with article directories?
          Or are you going to be “consistently wrong” like you have been all over this post?

          • Strathy says:

            “But then again, you still think article directories pass link juice for keywords in 2010. So at least you’re consistently wrong.”

            Are you kidding me?!? People actually pay this fool for SEO information? Any beginner marketer (read noob) can prove you wrong on this point alone. Geez …. what a dumb thing to say.

            • Lis says:

              Hey at least it leaves less competition for the rest of us!

            • Sam says:

              At least the guy ranks #2 for the keyword “copywriting” – behind Wikipedia. What do YOU rank for mate?

              SEO knowledge is measured by your rankings, and not the BS you spout…

              • Hey @Sam

                I rank for “Scribe SEO” #3,

                “Scribe SEO Review” # 10,

                “Scribe SEO Copywriting # 6,

                “Scribe SEO Scam # 3 & # 4,

                So what your saying is that I am an expert at SEO? Or do I have to rank #2 for these?

                Well, you’re right about the SEO Knowledge thing.

                At this point it is futile to dominate a market that has no ROI, but point to fact, proved.

                It’s a good thing that Brian chose the keyword copywriting to rank for because it is only one word. (and a high comp at that) so Kudos there for him.

                Had it been a multi keyword phrase Scribe SEO would never had let him know he was optimized for that word.

                The good thing for Brian ranking for that keyword is he can easily lure unsuspecting bloggers to buy unnecessary products to make them think that they will ever rank for “profitable keywords”

                Cheers….

        • Jay says:

          Brian, I don’t profess to be an expert about SEO, but I can offer you this opinion/question.

          BTW – I found this post from a Google search on the phrase “Scribe SEO Review” for which this post ranked #2.

          For someone who claims to know about SEO, do you think, in retrospect, that it was a great idea to post innumerable comments on this post? If I were selling a product online, I don’t imagine that I would want to fuel the comment section on a negative review to help it rank better.

          Perhaps it would be a good form of reputation management if you addressed the issues regarding the product… In this case, you don’t address those issues or even attempt to portray yourself in a favorable light.

          I’ve never tried Scribe SEO, so I’m not going to say it’s scam. To say that the pricing model seems ridiculous would {in my opinion} be the understatement of the year. Not only do you put people on a continuity model, but they effectively pay per use on a monthly basis. I guess if the market will bear that model, then great.

          Oh yeah, and in your earlier comment you defended the product on the basis of reviews from Michael Grayowlf and others. I’m not sure a stellar review laced with affiliate links counts for much.

          Liz, no offense but this is one blog post where the comment stream is even more interesting than the post itself.

  10. Talk about browbeating. Nothing ever convinces people to change their ideology or opinions more than yelling that they are wrong. I would die of laughter if Brian tried to get the law involved over any of your posts. Just because someone has a different opinion from your own doesn’t make either party right or wrong. The count of public opinion is mightier than any legal court, just ask the Monster Brewing Company.

    It isn’t my goal to pick and chose sides but I personally believe Brian is pursuing this issue in an entirely incorrect way. These little moments are the ones that define a person or idea. Taking the time to address the concerns and explain why such measures were taken goes much further than threats and tattelling.

    Listening is hugely important for any person or brand to build or expand the level of service or products they offer. Not all the “detractors” are right but the way you handle them says more about the character of the person or business.

    • Lis says:

      Hi Josh – yeah I have always had an issue with being bullied and being yelled at – Frankly I’m surprised at Brian’s attitude I had him pegged at much smarter than this.

      Address the issues Brian – Andy Black did and I was happy to revise my post and my opinion of his product. In fact on the basis of his responses there I would happily buy from him again in the future in the full confidence that he understands what customer service is. Now I don’t think Andy Black is a big name blogger or even a Third Triber – but he understands business and customer service

    • Dave Starr says:

      Agreed. A friend of mine publishes a commercial product that performs some of the same tasks as Brian’s claims to. In approximately six months leading up to his product release, my friend published dozens of actual examples of rank posts by using his product. Arguing is so much hot air, no matter who is generating it .. SERPs tell the tale, so far as I am concerned.

  11. Oh my, is it possible that Lissie has poked someone even more thin-skinned than the esteemed owner of SBI? Say it ain’t so!

    I was going to wax eloquent on the ins and outs of cyber defamation, but it’s already been a really, really long day. Instead I’ll just post this little linky for y’all to take a look at. It’s written in plain language for all you non-legal types out there. Highlights:

    A state court in New York dismissed a defamation case filed by a “Study in Europe for the Summer” educational company against one of its former students and against XCentric, the operator of RipoffReport.com…the decision in this case was driven largely the court’s conclusion that the Ripoff Report post constituted nonactionable consumer opinion.

    For example, under New York law, a defendant can defeat a defamation claim by showing that the published statements are “substantially true.” Newport Leasing Service v. Meadowbrook Distributing Corp., 1 AD3d 454 (N.Y. App. 2005). He can also defeat a defamation claim by showing that the defamatory statements, “when read in context would be perceived by a reasonable person to be nothing more than a matter of personal opinion.” Immuno AG v. Moor-Jankowski, 77 N.Y.2d 235 (N.Y. 1991). Loose, figurative or hyperbolic statements, even if deprecating to the plaintiff, are not actionable. Dillon v. City of New York, 261 AD2d 34 (N.Y. App. 1999). Moreover, according to Judge Judith Gische, courts in New York as “loathe to stifle someone’s criticism of goods and services.”

    According to Judge Gische, “the website, when viewed in its full context, reveals that Milewski is a disgruntled customer and that his statements reflect his personal opinion based on his personal dealing with [the Academy].”

    However, there is no question that for consumer complaint cases,…a disgruntled consumer really has to go out of his way to be liable for defamation. While I wouldn’t count on getting such an easy dismissal in every U.S. jurisdiction, this case does illustrate the steep hill defamation plaintiffs face in getting to recovery.

    To finish up, I’ll quote a little something from my own blog on the wisdom or lack thereof of suing for online defamation:

    Defamation might not wreck your reputation, but filing a defamation lawsuit almost certainly will.

    Have a good night, everybody.

    • Lis says:

      Thanks LC – that judge actually sounds like he’s making sense – how unusual for the legal professional! Yeah I doubt that anyone but a ‘fool” would read my blog and figure out that it was anything but my own personal opinion :-)

    • Sam says:

      Those cases were decided according to New York law. If Clarke was to actually sue, he’d have to sue in New Zealand (or wherever Lis resides) or the US. And even if he did sue in the US, it won’t likely be NY since he doesn’t live there.

      Libel and defamation laws differ a lot from state-to-state and especially country-to-country. Pulling out a few cases from NY doesn’t prove anything.

  12. Dirk Poulsen says:

    I was a bit shocked to see Brian’s response to your post. In the past he has been distant and now it seems that his actions kind of lead me to believe that life in wonderland is not so grand.

    Dealing with the public in general can make you very tired but you can’t lose your sense of humor or you will lose your customers.

    Brian, SEO experts? Is that like certified forklift drivers? Anyone can get a piece of paper with scribble on it.

    Wanna know the expert when it comes to SEO? Just go to Google and type in the “profitable” keyword and there is your experts.

    Brian Let’s use “How To Make Money Online”

    Even John Chow is on the front page of search and he tells you straight up…. Hey…I Make Money Online By Telling People How I Make Money Online…..OK

    Brian, right on your third tribe marketing site it states….

    It all started when Seth Godin emailed Brian Clark of Copyblogger. Brian had written a post about an innovative “get money fast” marketer named Frank Kern, and Seth didn’t like it at all. Brian figured people would treat the situation like he does — learn what you can and apply it in a way that works for your audience.

    Seth didn’t see it that way, and essentially asked Brian “what team he was on.”

    It was a good question. Brian gave it some thought, and got on the phone with Copyblogger Senior Editor Sonia Simone. They realized that, while they’re open to ideas from all kinds of sources, they’re not on any “team.”

    Brian, You dish the crap out just as fast as Kearn, Filsaime, Walker, and the rest.

    Really, you guys beat up good old Kearn and then sell stuff just like he does except he does it with class.

    Anyway I hope you mellow out Brian.

    Lissie, it was an honest review of the product, great post.

    • Dave Starr says:

      And although I never bought a thing from Frank Kern, I would have to say that watching his laid back beach videos are a heck of a lot more entertaining than Mr. Clark rattling his “I’ll sue you light saber”.

      As a man who is both age and follicle challenged I have to suggest that a lot of people who rail against Mr. Kern may do so because they also every his hair, his youth or his lifestyle … “If I don’t have it, then you can’t either.”

      Frankly, Brian, I’d rather watch Frank.

      • Lis says:

        I must admit Dave that I haven’t followed Frank Kern much – are you saying he cute on vid ? May have to check him out :-)

        • Dirk Poulsen says:

          Lissie,

          Frank Kern is absolutely the most “unique” Internet Marketer you will probably ever know.

          You really should take a minute and watch his “State Of the Internet Address at….http://masscontrolsite.com/blog/?p=65

          Brian Clark should take a few tips from Frank Kern, he might just bump up his monthly income if he did.. Oh, and be a little less BITCHY.

          Enjoy!

          • Lis says:

            Dirk – thanks to that video I had to go and waste hourse listening to the guy -very, very entertaining Thanks

            • I always learn something from every time sink LOL.

              It’s a shame the seo scribe people booted you from the third tribe out of spite and it is also very interesting.

              I wonder what the real cause for the nervous breakdown was?

  13. Sire says:

    I’ve only come into contact with a few of the big boys and of those only Darren Rowse comes out as a true gentleman. Most of the others tend to be a little arrogant, until reading Brian Clark’s comments, man he is way over the top.

    Brian, from what I’ve read of the post, including the meta tag, Lis never once said your program was a scam. She may have referred to it as being crap but then she has every right to her opinion, especially after paying such an exorbitant price.

    Rather than coming right out and attacking her I reckon you’d been a lot better off if you had tried to answer her critique. If she didn’t use it properly, find out where she went wrong and show her how to do it the right way. That is of course unless there isn’t a better way of doing it?

    You need to keep in mind that the people who will purchase this plugin of yours probably have no idea how it all works, and if Lis can’t work it out what hope in hell have they? No point telling us how your SEO experts gave it the thumbs up, they know what they are doing, not so the poor saps who try it and then throw their hand up in disgust when it all doesn’t make sense. Or were you hoping that they would just ignorantly accept the results at face value.

    I also have my doubts over your marketing skill. Your attack tells me otherwise. You mentioned her 367 followers. I dare say they are loyal followers and as such would probably jump to her defense. What if those 367 followers each wrote a post about the deplorable way you treated our heroine? Perhaps they also had 200-300 followers and perhaps a percentage of those took it upon themselves to write their own post, and then there are their followers and so on and so on.

    Talk about negative publicity! And to think that you brought it all on yourself.

    • Sam says:

      Um, she did say it was a scam. It may not be in her post but it’s still in her meta-description in Google.

  14. Derrick says:

    Brian,

    I had no opinion of you or your business before these series of comments. But I sure do now. When someone questions you or your business in the public eye how you respond shows a lot about your character.

    Guess what it showed about yours?

  15. Mariam says:

    I’ve found some claims for this product that I thought were dangerous. This product claims to:

    – Hit the keywords you are after
    – Tells you what search engines will think you’re writing about

    I can find other sentences from the web site I have issues with but these two are the most egregious. The others can be argued as semantics.

    Notice how it says “hit”. It doesn’t say outright “rank”. What does hit mean? Reach a certain keyword density in the post? Appear in the SERPs?

    The biggest whopper is “tells you what search engines will think”. Okay, let’s just take Google alone. They reverse engineered Google’s algorithm so they know what it’s thinking? Out of 200 odd scoring signals, they distilled it to a plugin based on on-site SEO.

    I seriously hope that people don’t take this plug-in at face value and think that if they write optimized SEO posts they will automatically rank and get traffic because that’s what they are alluding to.

    • Lis says:

      I think we can all take it as read Mariam if someone has figured out what “Google is thinking” quite a number of us would be paying a lot more than $27 or even$97/month for it!

  16. From the way Brian has conducted himself throughout the comments on this post I can be sure that he has lost many potential customers and I am one of them.

    To be fair, the meta description does state “I call it a scam in this review”, however the review clearly defines that this product is not a scam – how much notice to a change in this tag would Google actually make?

    • Lis says:

      Yes that’s true Darren – and I don’t know how much notice Google does take of the meta description – sometimes they use it – often they do not.

  17. Heather says:

    Hm. First off I know nothing about you Lis, or about Brian either – or at least I didn’t before reading this post. Came over here from Sire’s post just out of sheer curiousity…

    Have to say, there were much better ways to handle it. I felt your review to be honest as you saw it, and I think that possibly he just reacted out of misplaced anger/hurt. I’m not going to hold it against him, etc, because this is my first experience of him. It’s a hell of a first strike though!

    Certainly brings up some interesting points and lessons on ‘what not to do’.

    • Lis says:

      Hi Heather and welcome – yes although Brian had commented here before – and I have previously crticised his products, I do think his reaction here was a little out of character. We all have bad days sometimes! Unfortunately selling online does require a very thick skin

      • Heather says:

        Just hoping I react better if/when one of my products (when they’re released, still working on it) is criticized! Trial and error I think, it’s a shame this happened here, but as you said; everyone has a bad day now and then.

  18. George Serradinho says:

    Wow, it took me some time to go through all the comments here and I must say I’m not impressed at all. I’m actually using it on my blog right now, but I got 300 evaluations at $27 a month.

    I was thinking of using it for a few months (2-5) to get me in the groove, but now I think I should just toss it away. I’m not impressed at some of the comments left here and it shocks me.

    I’ll sue you, you sue me. Lets all just sue each other and call it a day, lol. I thought Brian was more mature, but I guess we all come short sometimes. No one is bigger than the next blogger.

    BTW, this is my first time here and I’ll subscribe as this is what I need. So many bloggers out there today don’t give honest reviews, some are just BS.

    • Lis says:

      Hi George and welcome. Keywords are key to ranking in search engines – but i hope as this post and quite a number of my others prove – you can write a keyword optimized post without making it illiterate or incomprehensible! The title is key – I personally use subheading a lot anyways so I try to have a keyword in a subtitle as well (bolded) and I include it in the last paragraph.

      BTW when I and many others say keyword we mean phrase – 3 or more words usually.

      • Tom says:

        I haven’t used the word Scam in a title, but I was planning to in the next coming days. I don’t understand why the product creators would have a problem with it, if you draw the conclusion that it is not a scam.

        Wouldn’t they rather have positive (or at least a post letting people know that it is not a scam) ranking about those posts that do call it a scam? We are doing them a favour :D

        Great review, and you have a new subscriber.

  19. Michael Cowen says:

    Talk of libel aside and I wanted to add my comments to this based on my experience of what Brain Clark offers. This is NOT a personal recommendation for Brian Clark as a person but rather a review of my own personal experience of the services he provides and whether or not they have added value to my business.

    First up my experience with Scribe SEO has been very good. This is a new product and there will be some teething issues. I know, I have had some and have been quite active with the support team.

    Some of the issues relate to what was posted in this review and they are being addressed. This is why they offered the product at an introductory price of $27 for the $97 price.

    But has this product helped me. Yes. Absolutely – it has helped me get the structure of my posts right. This is what I expected and what I got. Based on my experience, would I buy the product? Yes, I would. For me personally I am getting the value I expected.

    I also see that Teaching Sell has been mentioned. And yes, it is expensive. As someone who has actually bought the product and experienced the product, would I say that I get value for it? Yes I would. Would I buy it again? Yes I would.

    And finally, the third tribe. Again my experience of this product is has been really good. In fact so much so that it has really helped me structure my online approach. Is it worth it? Yes, again based on my own personal experience (and threats of legal issues aside), it definitely is?

    Maybe in conclusion, there are so many resources available on the internet that one can get so caught up in them. I made a decision to use certain people as my resource base. Brain Clark is one of them.

    I know many of you will disagree with me based on his comments above. My comment may also be slightly off the point here but my point here is not whether I like him as a person or not. Rather it about the quality of all my experience with his products and the people he has working with him.

    It is rather that they have real value to my online and offline business. The return on what I have paid has been justified many times over — especially when I look at what I charge per hour and what I get in return.

    Michael

    • Lis says:

      Hi Michael and thank you for your thought out comment. I edited your link so that you get the benefit of an anchored link on your main keywords. Yes I agree lets keep the debate on the products.

      That’s the first I heard that Scribe SEO were admitting issues with their keyword identification. Unfortunately this is the heart of their sysetm and their product’s key feature. So to go live iwth it not working is unacceptable if they knew they had issues. I say that from a professional point of view- I’ve been involved in corporate software testing and roll-outs. You don’t go live with a system that doesn’t work – it destroys customer trust and therefore extremely bad business. If they thought it was right and then subsequently found out it wasn’t – at the very least they should be offering credits/refunds/some compenstation to customers.

      Looking at your blog I have the impression that you are primarily offering consulting services to businesses correct? In which case Teaching Sells is a good fit for you – the point with Teaching Sells program is that it is pitched (and I quote from the current website’s headline) “Here’s the Best Online Business for the
      21st Century… Period.” It implies that anyone can profit from it and anyone can do it. I have been and I have worked with consultants for many years in the real, face to face world. I would say maybe 1% of the population has the skills and personality to be a successful consultant – even fewer than that actually succeed. The key is if you are not an expert at something useful for which people will spend a lot of money – you are going nowhere with that system.

      Most people I know are not looking to make money online by running a consulting or other form of real-world business. We are looking at opportunities for passive income – ways to make money as a business rather than just selling personal services. Personal services don’t scale readily, and are dependent on your personal efforts – if you took then next month off from your business – would you still get paid? I would.

      Third Tribe Marketing – yeah fascinating – I had actually paid for a second month because I was really interested in how the members perceived value in that environment – I was going to do a follow up because it was possible that it would evolve into something useful for a sub-set of members. Unfortunately I can’t do that because my sub was cancelled by the Third Tribe management.

      • Michael Cowen says:

        Thanks Liz,

        I just want to make sure my words are not taken out of context and are not saying what I do not mean.

        I NEVER said that Scribe Seo does not work. I also NEVER said that the product was flawed. I said there were some teething problems.

        Using Scribe Seo there have been one or two issues but they have been very isolated and the scribe support team have answered them. This is quite different from your comment that they have launched a system that does not work. So to say that the product has been launched without it working properly is incorrect and misleading.

        And as someone with your kind of experience you would know there are going to be teething problems. And ja sure, maybe they should have said that this was a beta launch and managed it along those lines, but let’s not throw the baby out with the bath water here.

        Personally I think it works brilliantly which is what prompted me to write my initial comment. My blog is new and has been set up for a new purpose. Scribe has helped me structure my content around the keywords I want without changing the meaning of what I am saying. It has helped me keep my LSI focus. For sure, I expect Google to send traffic on other keywords in posts and the primary keyword may not turn out be the best traffic driver.

        I do run a consulting type of business and yes, Teaching Sells works really well with my client base. But having gone through the whole program and I can tell you as someone who has done the program it would work if I was selling widgets – or even an information product about widgets. It would work in any market. Again let’s not throw the baby out with the bath water here. Let’s rather take the learning and adapt it to work in the best possible way to make money from what we are doing.

        As for passive income, there are ways to make that work using the Teaching Sells approach. And would I get paid if I took a month of my consulting business. Yes I would. It may be my business and I run it but have other people doing delivery for me and I have clients who pay me every month.

        Michael

        • Lis says:

          Michael in my experience it didn’t work. I took a post that already ranked in Google – to which google was sending traffic on the keywords that google thought the post was about – that’s the ultimate test. And Scribe didn’t even identify one of my keywords phrases – every keyword it returned was a single word – my keywords are never a single word – and yours shouldn’t be either if you want to get any rankings

          • Michael Cowen says:

            Hi Liz,

            After your comments here I thought I would dig a bit deeper to make sure that my results were as what I thought they were.

            I ran some of my posts through google adwords and see what keywords it spate out for each post. The results were further proof for me that it works. All the results for the posts I put in came out with the keyword I was optimising for and what scribe seo said were my primary keywords.

            Liz, I can’t explain why we are getting different results here. All I can say is that I have really tested this on quite a few posts and really am satisfied that it works.

            Michael

            • Scribe SEO says:

              Michael,

              Check your Google Analytic’s . What keywords are searchers finding your blog with?

              Searchers are finding your blog, right?

              Dirk

            • Scribe SEO says:

              Michael,

              Couldn’t help but analyze your site with seo quake, a free tool plug in for firefox.

              You have 88 pages indexed in Google, 44 in Yahoo you have “no follow” on your site links.

              You have 6 total back links to your site that are anchored with the keyword “michael” not “Relationship Marketing” which appears to be the main keyword your site is targeting and also competitive.

              That keyword has 57 million plus competing pages with the front page full of pr 5, 4, 3, pages. Good Luck

              I hope that Scribe Seo pulls you out of this go no where situation but I doubt it will.

              Not trying to piss you off, just give you a reality check!

              Dirk

              • Michael Cowen says:

                Hi Dirk,

                No, you are not pissing me off. And thanks for your attempt at reality here but quite frankly you do not understand what we are doing or our strategy.

                Look, I am not a seo expert. I don’t pretend to be and I don’t have aspirations to be. That said, I am not ignorant nor complete ass when it comes to the subject. For me this is a process of learning and becoming a better online marketer.

                Perhaps I can give you a bit of context about the reality I live in here. You are quite right when you say that I am not going get to the front page with my theme keyword as the competition is really high. But guess what, I do not want to.

                I am not looking at this from an international search point of view. I do not want clients all around the world and do not want to send my teams around the world. I am optimising on the local search engines here, where there is an opportunity. A really good one. We have done our research and we only need 5 of the right people coming to my site a day for our strategy to work here.

                You will also notice that I mentioned that this blog is brand new in an earlier post. So no, I am not getting huge traffic and it’s too early for us to really analyse and get the real value that we will be out of it. Largely because we are still getting the structure and content right. That’s why I like Scribe and my own assessment shows me that it is working.

                And come on Dirk, the backlines that are anchored with the keyword Michael come from comments on blogs and sites like LinkedIn. I checked these in Market Samurai. It has nothing to do with Scribe SEO. It has nothing to do with Lis’s point that Scribe SEO is not pulling the right keywords and that the heart of the system is not working.

                Michael

                • Lis says:

                  Michael Dirk’s point is that backlinks anchored correctly are far more important than on -age SEO – paritcualrly for a new blog. For the ultimate and LONG guide to backlinks check out Allyn’s: http://bloggerillustrated.net/how-to-get-links-by-darren-rowse-and-i-agree/ Personally I wouldn’t worry too much about comments – try to get a guest post on a ranking South African blog for your keyword…

                  • Michael Cowen says:

                    Lis, I know this. As I said I am not completely ignorant and I know what I have to do to get my local seo working. My point is that an analysis of my back links is not relevant to your review of Scribe and the conversation here.

                    • Dirk says:

                      Michael,

                      I signed up for the free trial of scribe seo. I think it is absolutely a cool tool but it needs some serious bugs worked out of it.

                      Along with this tool (because on page optimization is only a small part of the ranking process)there should be a little training included along the lines of building authority for your site as well as optimizing the pages.
                      If you never get traffic you will never know what people are really searching for in your market.
                      What is an seo expert?

                      Maybe someone that understands seo?

                      You came here and said this tool works for you. But have shown no examples of results and results are what people like to see.

                      I am not saying your wrong for following the tribe of a-listers.

                      If anything at all I would like to help you find success with your goals. Get your clients, make your clients happy and make money.

                      Having a great seo optimized post is very simple to write and does not require any software to do it.

                      You could be #1 in search for all your local search terms just by taking a little time to learn a few simple steps that you should be taking now to ensure the success of your business in the future.

                      Software and blogs are cool but reading commenting and dreaming all the time does not make you financially successful or solvent.

                      Dirk

                • Dirk says:

                  Michael,

                  I know what you are saying. What my point is …

                  You have to know which keywords your customer is going to use in search to find you like…….

                  “Relationship Marketing South Africa” or
                  “Relationship Marketing”yourtown”

                  You have to choose the keywords of your customer. You have to understand and know your customer. You have to have a solution that will solve your customers problems.

                  That’s how you make money Marketing.

                  Not by selling cool software that doesn’t help the market buying it gain the knowledge they need to have success.

                  Be sure and check out my seo copyrighting experiment.

                  If you take the time to read it and watch the results unfold over the next 30 days you might learn some cool stuff that you can actually implement and get results.

                  Dirk

                  • Michael Cowen says:

                    Ag, no man Dirk. This conversation is now going sideways. We are sorted. We know what we are doing. I don’t need your product and I do not need marketing lessons from you. I have been doing this for a very long time. I am now clocking out of this conversation.

                    Michael.

                    • Your very funny Michael

                      I don’t have a product to sell you but I am now looking into creating a new software product

                      “scribe seo comments”

                      Learn how to write search engine optimized comments with the push of a button.

                      Only 17.00 for 30 analysis….

                      It will be a great WordPress add on.

                      Cheers!

                      Dirk Poulsen

  20. John C says:

    I don’t care if Brian Clark comes out with a real tree that actually grows money on it and he sells it for next to nothing, I won’t buy it simply based on my new found perception of the crying little baby that he has made himself out to be based on his comments above! You may not care Brian but I will tell you right now that you have lost me as a customer for LIFE no matter what you come out with from now on. And your wannabe “guru” buddies have also lost me as a possible customer just by being guilty by association with you. You might not think the followers of Lis are very smart but I bet we are a hell of a lot smarter than you think and you never know who you might piss off, so you should probably watch what you say next time! There are plenty of very capable internet marketers reading these blogs and calling us all fools might get you in a pile of sh*t that you can’t dig your way out of.

    • Lis says:

      You see John – I am never gonna be a big name blogger – I start a post off in one direction and the comments take it from a reivew of an SEO product to a case study in online reputation management and customer service LOL

  21. Brad West says:

    OK Lis,
    You more than likely don’t know me, but indirectly we are connected through the WassupBlog of Sire’s. As a matter a fact let me go get the link that lead me here In Defence Of A Bloggers Right To Review A Product I may just start a Thread on the Guild leading to both of these articles.

    I don’t need to comment on the manics of the product, I haven’t used it and really don’t feel inclined to do so as to me Customer Service is as important as the product itself. Point being good, bad or indifferent if there is an issue with a product (evidently there are questions that are addressed in the review). Why wouldn’t the issues be addressed by possibly showing the end user the proper way to use the product, or by addressing and fixing the issue with in the product itself. Don’t most products go through a testing phase to work out bugs and get feedback?

    I’m still not sure how getting defensive and threatening is ether helping improve the product, or gaining a positive reputation for customer care. That seems the issue at this point more than the product. Or am I missing something? Is defensive, threatening, and belittling is the new approach for dealing with customers.
    Brad West

    • Lis says:

      Hi Brad and welcome. Don’t ask me with how to deal with customers – I’m no expert – though I think I read somewhere that if you have a happy customer they tell a few of their friends, if you have an unhappy customer they will tell a lot more of their friends\!

      • Brad West says:

        I think you are on the right track Lis,

        Yes bad news and conflict do travel allot faster than good news for the most part. People love to thrive on negative things for some reason. That is the way mass media works also.

        I just came back from Sire’s blog and ending my comment I disagreed with him a little about his choice of words.

        I like to say right, wrong, or indifferent, the customer is always the focus to make happy. I don’t like useing “the customer is always right” we well know better than that.

        Since we are what we think, being diplomatic and fair to oneself is pretty important. Implying that the customer is always right is implying that we are wrong. Besides the choosing of words a happy customer is always best!

  22. Dirk says:

    Lissie

    I just had to do the Scribe SEO free trial to check it out. My results are on the front page toward the bottom.

    If the scribe seo tool knew what a keyword was I would have better results as far as page optimization on it’s analysis.

    As far as Brians customer support even with the nervous breakdown it seemed better than other Guru’s that sell junk to newbies.

    • Brad West says:

      I do have to agree with you Dirk there is some honorific support out there. I have first hand knowledge of that. I don’t know what is worse defending or ignoring? But even to this day I am surprised how many people are doing this same thing.

      I don’t want to get too specific here in someone else home, Not my place to disrespect Lis’s great site here. There are some real beauties out there though!
      Brad West

  23. Brian D. Hawkins says:

    I just commented on another blog earlier today on this product. It was obviously an affiliate post, which I have no problem with, and I decided to place a comment. I mentioned that I couldn’t understand why there would be a monthly fee for a product like a WP plugin. It sounds like a very cool tool but it shouldn’t be priced like it was a top shelf paid membership site.

  24. JR says:

    Wow, there are not too many words to describe this whole interaction, no wait, I know one, Preshool!

    Newbies,
    Let this be a lesson to you, before you open your wallet and spend precious money, read, research, investigate, read again, do more research, read some more, search Google, and did I mention read? All the endless, useful and usable guides,information and most important first hand product reviews (such as this one) available online about making money online and all associated products, and then and only then when you get a clear picture of what’s really going on, spend money on those tools that you really need and those that will enhance your business.

    Believe me, free and reliable information AND tools are everywhere, and it’s the best place to start.

    • Brad West says:

      I was watching the NASCAR race today, and got to thinking that I never got to give any tips on watching out for yourself out there in this wild world.

      So I got the e-mail and saw that you had done just that JR. Great job you beat me to it, Super!

      Part of research is asking questions. Google search is great, and don’t forget to scroll down the bottom of the page and use “search within Results” to narrow your search. If you are a Newbie or an Oldie please realize that people love to answer questions. Yes you may get different opinions from different people, but on a question thread you can pick out what the majority is leaning towards. Sometimes a little more challenging to accomplish on a blog. But ask others really it works (normally more than one)

      You need to ask where the value is!
      Brad West

  25. Hey there Lis,

    Firstly I just want to say I have no alliances and no agendas, I’m the original dumb ass and I know it.

    That said my site is only 4 months old and today gets 15,000 visitors a month and well over 1,000 comments, impressive right? NO not one bit and I’ll tell any big shot here why;

    No matter where you are, someone has and is doing it better than you, when you started did you start with more than 397 subscribers? I seriously doubt it, did you know everything there is to know about everything? Again if you did tell me how you did it.

    The post Lis has published here is objective and extremely well written, to put if down because you don’t agree with it so violently is an extremely bad move.

    Lis, Allyn, Sire, Mitch and virtually everyone on this post commenting knows the importance of readers. When people disagree with me or offer advice, they are almost 99% right. So do I put them down in such a way that is destroys my credibility? No, I look at it and learn from people who have taken the time to actually put something together, not threaten them (which potentially puts you in a risky position yourself) and say I will take everything you own.

    Your readers put you where you are today, feelings that you are supperior or somehow better placed to talk about anything in this world than the next person is a massive mistake.

    Now notice how I constructed this comment. I have aN IQ of 94 and severe dyslexia, no education and grew up homeless, yet I still know the community on my site is all down to the readers and visitors, not because I am a superhero.

    Lis, You do amazing work and like Mitch rightly says you have nothing to worry about. Things like this will make your community stronger and I for one think you do amazing work.

    Anyone reading this post, please visit Allyn who commented ealier, like Lis they know the true value of being grounded.

    If anyone wants any help please just shout and remember to look after your readers and everyone you come into contact with, help people on the way up because they will catch you when you fall.

    Leaving thought I’m going to have some interesting things to say to some people when I get asked to speak at the events the ”celebs” are talking at.

    Keep up the great work

  26. Kristi says:

    I came here from Sire’s post on reacting to negative product reviews. I’ve never used this product, so I really don’t know how it does or does not work, and I’m not defending or criticizing anyone’s reactions or responses above.

    But what I think the problem is that the meta description for this post says “Scribe SEO is a monthly subscription service which claims to teach you how to improve your on-page SEO. I call it a scam in this review.” So when search engines pick up that post, it will state that she calls Scribe SEO a scam in the description. Google “review of scribe seo” or “scribe seo scam” and it is the first result. The post may conclude it is not a scam, but the search results say “I call it a scam in this review.”

    I think if your conclusion is not calling it a scam, a better edit of the meta would be “Is it a scam?”, “Scam or not?”, etc. That may even draw more readers into clicking the article, as they will be curious what your conclusion is.

    • Lis says:

      Hi Kristi and welcome – one thing I have learned from Scribe SEO – is that in this particular case Google seems very keen on posting the actual metasdescription – it didn’t used to so I’ve ignored metadescriptions for months – obviously I should be paying a little more attention. The issue with your suggestions – is that they are exactly what most affiliate marketers will use – to make you click thru to a very positive review – the answer to whether its a scam or not – is always – NO its not!

  27. Terry says:

    Hi Lis,

    So you went and stirred up another hornet’s nest! Love it, especially when the hornets are of the stingin’ kind! Um, nope, I’m not getting into the debate, I think enough has been said on both sides without me going and adding anything to the mix.

    Just want to praise your good old fashioned gumption at taking on something like this and standing up to the big boys when they need standing up to! Good on ya!

    • Lis says:

      Hi Terry – long time no see – who you calling OLD – old boy! Thanks for stopping by

  28. Denise says:

    Hey Lis! So you did it again! Lis, Lis, Lis…. What do we do with you. You are always crating a buzz. No wonder wherever I go lately people know you or have heard of you. :-)

    Threatened to be sued AGAIN!

    I remember the first time you were threatened with a law suit you were really upset. Seems to energize you now though. You do so crack me up.

    I am way behind the eight ball lately. Way to many sites to work on. I will however try to get a post up and send some juice your way.

    Looks like Brian Clark needs a spanking anyway. (Maybe he likes it!)

    Appreciate you taking the time to inform people on Scribe SEO and hopefully anyone considering buying into this program will find your post and see what type of person they are giving their business and monetary trust to.

    If this post stops one person from throwing their valuable money away then I guess you have a mission accomplished.

    Keep up the good work Lis!

    • Lis says:

      Ah you get used to it Denise – I used to be scared of selling – today I looking very close to selling our home without the “help” of a real estate agent (realtor) – within a week of advertising – see you can teach old girls new tricks!

      yeah its all about warning people Denise – if people want to go ahead a buy – great – but at least they read something more than a fawning, “its all so wonderful and here’s my affiliate link” review!

  29. Denise says:

    Lis, I used to be a real estate sales person and I still use an agent.

    This old girl is learning, but I am a lot slower than the pack. But I am still in the pack (game) and thats what matters most.

    • Lis says:

      Ah interesting Denise – do they make as much in the US as they do here – the commimssion on our house is around NZ$25,000 (say US$17,000) – so far the advertising has cost me around NZ$500

  30. Denise says:

    It depends on the selling price. But it sounds pretty close.

    Making money online is way easier. :-)

  31. Here in the good old USA Northern Utah Real Estate Agents think they are worth 6% so if they actually sell my 2 acres of commercial buildings and land they will stand to get $35,700 USD.

    Of course I wrote in the contract that if I have to sell it they don’t get squat.

    By the way Scribe SEO does not work.

    What I see is “it” is a reciprocity thing for most members of the CULT A-Listers club.

    They feel like Brian and associate Clan leaders have delivered so much valuable content that the least they could do is pay the 27.00 per month so they can feel good about being part of the group.

    You know how important an RSS feed score is and this is really one of the main reasons they use to justify following the tribe or cult or whatever applicable name you might think of.

    By the way my data center shows me #5 on Google for the keyword “Scribe SEO”. What does yours show?

    • Lis says:

      You’re five in New Zealand too, and scroogle.org – well done! Hmm I thought Third Tribe Marketing was the time for the followers to feel good about paying the leadersd – I thought Scribe SEO was actually supposed to be a tool :-)

      6% that is ugly – do many people sell privately in the US?

  32. You already know that scribe seo is an income stream for Brian Clark and whoever can sell it to someone. Some people will buy it.

    Look at the guys who flew the planes into the world trade center in New York back in 2001. They really believed in what they were doing and so do these people paying for Scribe SEO.

    Getting Brainwashed is a fact of life….Look at me I truly think I can think for myself.

    The same people that sell Real Estate publicly are the same ones Generally that would buy Scribe SEO.

    My Realtor is actually a friend of mine and if she can get this place sold for me then I will pay up.

    See not everyone agrees with everything with everyone!

  33. WordVixen says:

    Lis- I dropped you a link on a little Tumblr blog of mine, if I get around to a full post on my regular blog, I’ll drop a link there too.

    I did a quick Google search and came across a blog that I used to read and checked out their review (this would be the same person that introduced me to the A-lister blogs, which I never could understand where the info was and assumed that it was me that was in the wrong until I found Griz). It was the typical fawning review, but I think I finally saw where the use was for the plug-in, flawed as it is.

    It seems that it might be useful as a checklist and guide for the newest of the newbies. This person openly admitted that she didn’t even know what a keyword is. My concern though, is that if this person is Scribe SEO’s target market, then it’s not likely to succeed. At least in the long term. If the people using the product don’t even know what a keyword is, then how are they going to use the plugin effectively (if it should ever manage to work as promised)? How are they going to make money if they know literally nothing of SEO? And at such a high price (She stated that it was only $27 a month, but I remember when she also said that she made little more than $10 a week and sometimes not that) how long will it be before the newbie gives up and declares him or herself a failure because they couldn’t succeed even with a guaranteed tool? Then, bye-bye goes the subscription.

    What’s most interesting to me, is that Brian Clark actually left a comment on that blog that made it sound as though he really didn’t know much, if anything, about Scribe SEO. Perhaps he’s merely lending his name and strong-arm to the enterprise? (I’ll be happy to share the link to the Scribe SEO review I mentioned via email if you want it- but since I’m rather fond of the blogger, I’d rather not publish it here)

    • Lis says:

      OK I am going to do a post on “what is a keyword” – because I totally understand where someone is coming from that says that – I had the problem for way too long!

  34. WordVixen says:

    Just dropping a quick note that I also linked this post up on my personal blog, but it’s sharing space on the same post that links to Allyn’s latest post. :-)

    • Lis says:

      I already get search traffic for Grizz – now I am going to get search traffic for Allyn as well! I am NOT Allyn, or Grizz – I am Lis and I’m a GIRL ! Thanks for the link!

      • WordVixen says:

        *lol* No worries- I made sure that the links are anchored properly. You’ll be getting Brian Clark search traffic, not Allyn’s. ;-) Too bad Allyn cleaned up his act- I can so see him linking to you with “Brian Clark is a dou***”.

        And you’re welcome!

  35. Carson Brackney says:

    The Product: I’ve had a chance to play with Scribe SEO… Is it perfect? No, and I’ve noticed issues with the keyword identification, too, but it would definitely be of benefit to a number of people, even with its imperfections. Is it worth the money? That would depend on who you are and what you’re doing. Would I pay $27+ per month for it? Nah. But I don’t think I’m the target audience. I think your review, regardless of any biases you may or may not have, was fair–even if I don’t necessarily agree 100% with your conclusions. It’s a reasonable opinion based on your preferences, experience, etc.

    The Metatags: Including “I call it a scam in this review” may or may not be the basis for a successful cause of action in the courts, but it sure makes it look like you have an ax to grind and it isn’t a very fair depiction of what your post actually argues. In fact, you come right out and say it isn’t a scam in the review. It almost seems like you’re picking a fight to me.

    Brian Clark: I read Copyblogger. I contributed a guest post there several years ago. I don’t know him, though. From what I’ve read, he seems like an OK guy and this episode seems a little out of character to me. My guess is that you hit him with a negative review on a bad day–and that the meta “scam” crap didn’t help any. Those who are now totally turned off to anything he may ever say or do might want to step back and cut the guy a wee bit of slack.

    • Sire says:

      I actually don’t think he deserves any slack due to the fact that he left more than one comment, some several hours apart giving him plenty of opportunity to take another tack, especially after seeing the reactions of some of the commentators. Did he take the opportunity? Nope.

      As to the meta tag, most people wouldn’t even have noticed it, I know I didn’t, if he hadn’t brought it up.

      It’s obvious that the intention of the meta tags was for the search engine benefit and not a personal attack on Brian or his plugin.

      • Lis says:

        To be totally fair to Brian – I didn’t immediately approve his first comment – it was around 7am when I saw it – he may have left it several hours earlier – however once I approved it (and he obviously subbed to the comments) – it was a real time tit-for-tat.

    • Lis says:

      Hi Carson and welcome. The meta description (not tag I think Brian would agree that they almost worthless) thing is interesting – I wrote it off the cuff to make sure it was completely different from any phrases I’d used in the article. In fact I think I wrote it first. My experience had been that Google seems to ignore meta descriptions anyways and pull from the article around the keyword phrase used to search for it. In fact if I google a unique phrase from the post I do indeed get a description which is NOT the metadescritpion here I think Google uses the meta descirption initially but drops it in favour of actual content once it has properly indexed the post. As Sire says – if Brian hadn’t brought it to readers attention I doubt anyone would have noticed.

      • Carson Brackney says:

        You might be right. No one may have noticed. And you may not have meant anything by it, either. It just *seemed* a little intentionally provocative in the context of this conversation. Not the biggest thing in the world, though, by any stretch.

  36. Rob Sellen says:

    Carson,

    Out of character, no, he is bullying, and it’s not the first time I’ve seen it, seems to be in character if you ask me.

    Hit him with a negative review on a bad day?
    Is there a good day to do an HONEST review?

    Put out decent stuff and all reviews turn out good, simple.

    Cut him some slack?
    Why?

    He threatened he could “take everything away” from Lis… hmm… nice bloke! Not… and over a blog post that doesn’t flow they way he likes it? wow!

    • Carson Brackney says:

      Well, I can only say that my limited interactions and impression of Brian based on my experience isn’t negative. That’s why I’d cut him a bit of slack, personally. If your history is different, it makes sense that you’d see things in a different way.

      Note that I’m not justifying all of his remarks or anything. Just saying that I wouldn’t use them as a basis to automatically reject anything he does/sells in the future.

      • Rob Sellen says:

        Fair enough, no, I agree, people should make their own minds up, not use that as a basis to automatically reject anything he does or says, but on that note, people should also take what he says with a pinch of salt too. ;)

        After all, we have to think for ourselves.

  37. Richard Pelletier, Freelance Copywriter says:

    Whoa, baby. Tempers are flaring. I did buy Scribe. It seemed like a pretty good brand promise – “we’ll help you get seo right.” The thing is, I already know quite a bit (by no means an expert) about this stuff. I think I got it because I somehow believed I knew less than I did and this would help me.

    But man, this tool, as of a half-hour ago, does not recognize the word “copywriter” which is, you know, sort of IRONICAL. :)

    My title tags, meta description, keyword string ALL begin with “freelance copywriter”. But Scribe says: “No primary keywords found.”

    On a real estate site I’m working on, it doesn’t recognize, “homes for sale”.

    Now to be fair, I’ve gotten it to work on a few blog posts for clients. But it’s too fickle. WAY too fickle to be useful in a reliable way. I thought I could use it to help teach clients how to optimize their sites and blog posts, but I can’t do that if it doesn’t recognize basic search terms. They’ll be more confused than they are now, which would not be good.

    I assume things will get better, but it is puzzling right now.

    Can’t say I’m thrilled about giving Brian Clark my money after this display up top. I can truly appreciate vigorously defending your business. I’d be livid and furious if I sensed that someone was calling my work a scam. Which I am NOT saying happened here, but Brian seems to think/feel it did.

    But I know more about Brian Clark than I did before, and I can’t say that what I know today makes me want to know more in the future.

    Taking these disputes online can be costly to all involved.

    • Lis says:

      Thanks for the further examples Richard, again these aren’t obscure keyword phrases at all – frankly if I product was in a (free) beta phase it would be acceptable at the price its being offer at – its not really great customer service.

  38. Todd Morris says:

    lol … wow, reading this comment thread drama just cost me 25 minutes I didn’t really have :-)

    I have no real opinion on Scribe SEO. When it first came out, it sounded kind of interesting, so I had a look. But as soon as I saw there was a Monthly Fee attached, I became unconcerned about what it may or may not do.

    And as for Brian, I’ll still read copyblogger … but I’ve never bought any of their stuff in the past … and the way he acted on this thread was just further confirmation that I won’t be making any future purchases either.

    Todd

  39. Nic Oliver says:

    Hi Lis

    I have bought Scribe SEO for one reason; eventually I will be writing a post for newbies and for the on-page SEO wanted to compare Scribe with Keyword Academy. I strongly believe that if I’m going to offer an opinion, I have to have given both a fair trial.

    My concern about Scribe SEO is simple – a newbie who gets used to using it will learn little other than how to get a good score from the Plugin. On the other hand, I suppose it will help those who do not want to learn more. To be fair to Scribe, it has always identified the keyword or phrase I was trying to highlight.

    However, if a newbie really wants to understand how to play the keyword game, Keyword Academy wins hands down. For the cost of a year’s subscription to Scribe, people will learn far more from Keyword Academy.

    You will also be getting a link from my site as tomorrow, I’m using this as a case study of the dangers of dealing badly with negative feedback in the Social Media world.

    Enjoy the day adn the weekend

    Nic

    • Lis says:

      That’s a very good point Nic – tell most of us we have “earned” 92% and we will want 100% but if that isn’t teaching us SEO its not good at all! I completely agree with the Keyword Academy – that’s why I plaster the ad all over here – it really does work!

  40. Richard Pelletier, Freelance Copywriter says:

    Just want to put in the record that I canceled Scribe and asked for my money ($27.00 for first month) back and it was done. No hassles, just a quick refund.

  41. JL Palmetto says:

    Lis wrote:
    >>On a side note I notice my subscription to Third Tribe Marketing was just cancelled – strange I thought as I have never broken the TOS of the forums and never commented about Scribe SEO at all on the forums.<<

    Hee. [Tapping my magic turban with pride at my massive ability to read crystal balls…]

    It seems that my premonition after your 3T review, that you were about to win SOME KIND (ha!) of popularity award at Third Tribe has proved true. Yuppers… you got the UN-popularity award!

    :-)

  42. Marty says:

    Watch him on Twitter. Under @copyblogger, he regularly flames people for the smallest things. Once I saw him flame somebody for using Twtter’s new Retweet feature. He called it offensive and threatened to unfollow anybody who used it. You’d think he’d have better business sense than to be so negative under an account that bears the name of his main site.

    It seems the friendly posts on his sites are just a facade to get you to buy buy buy. For that, I have unfollowed you @copyblogger!

    • Rob Sellen says:

      That’s cos he is an idiot…

      I am SO glad Lis done this post, not just because it shows an honest review but because now MORE people can see that all is not as it seems with a few of these A-listers.

      People needed to know the truth, they need people like Lis standing up and telling it like it is, from their own personal perspective.

      • Lis says:

        Rob you made me blush when I approved this comment :-) I wasn’t aware that the blogging world had got so narrow – guess I am the gate crasher at the moment :-)

        • Rob Sellen says:

          You… blush? Never! :P

          We are all proles (1984) :)
          The gatekeepers to keeping it real.

          We would be doing people a disservice by not doing what we do, telling it as it is.

  43. scribe seo says:

    There is something that Brian said in this thread that really stands out and should be noted by everyone.
    Here it is…………
    “You don’t have any experience. You’re a fool leading fools. Thanks for the documented evidence I will never link to”

    Now he straight up admits that you have documented evidence that Scribe SEO does not do what it claims to do.

    Lissie you have great experience and I make more money because of your advice.

    Let’s see one, just one Scribe SEO user show proof of ranking for the “Keyword” that Scribe says they are optimized for. Keep in mind that scribe does not even know itself as a keyword.

    Proof on my site, I signed up for the free trial to see Scribe in action.

    Cheers

  44. Alok says:

    I am glad I found Lis,Griz,Mark etc. before I got involved in this whole IM business. Otherwise I don’t know how much money would have gone down the drain.

    • Lis says:

      Lucky for me I started with no money so didn’t lose too much – but I know many who have and continue to do so

  45. Nic says:

    Ok, can’t resist this one – how do you define “Social Media” in the context of your last comment? To me, Social Media is a set of tools, including platforms, for networking. They help us do on-line what we’ve been doing for millenia off-line, communicate.

    They are a means to an end and not, as so many of the Social Media “Gurus’ would have it, an end in themselves.

    • Lis says:

      LOL – basically in life I am not very good at working a room or doing small talk – so basically ignored the big social sites (fb, twitter) – though blog commenting to me is the converation that blogs are all about. But agree there is a place for social media particularly for businesses – but its part of a strategy not an endi in itself

  46. Nic says:

    Hi Lis!

    I thought that the issues raised in this thread are so impostant that you are linked to here

    Keep smiling!

    nic

    • Lis says:

      Thanks Nic – I find it quite funny because I have always pretty much ignored social media – but I do know how to be pleasent to people and have a civilised argument – I don’t need people to agree with me here but I am more impressed by an argument rather than threats – like most people I think!

  47. Jeff Carter says:

    Here’s a Chrome extension I recently started using:

    SEO Site Tools – Pulls tons of On-Page and Off-Page metrics, Social Media info and enhances SERPs with metrics as well as GA, WMT and much more — http://bit.ly/bEdsEc

  48. Evan says:

    I am REALLY late to the party, but this post and the corresponding comments have led me not to buy the product (which has recently been reduced again).

    Thanks! First time here!

    • Lis says:

      Hi Evan and welcomer – yes I noticed there was a new “special” on giving you more searches for the same price – maybe the punters are starting to wise up?

  49. iKode says:

    Wow this was the last thing I expected to find when I searched for…

    “scribe seo alternative”

    I’ve been trying to find the best SEO plugins to help me launch my blog and have come across some questionable plugins. Although I like the idea this plugin makes it easier to “optimize” a post its just way too pricey. Thanks for the info!

    • Lis says:

      Hi ikode – I hadn’t actually thought of that kw – its always cool when you are found for a kw you weren’t consicously optimising for! For on-page SEO I’d either use all-in-one-SEO or Platinum SEO (both free) or go for a theme like Frugal which has SEO built in (but you’d be wanted to use more of its features than just SEO for the price)

      Yeah I do stuff a little differently around here – I got a little bored of just finding “sales ptich” reviews. If I like stuff I will definitely try to sell it to you LOL but if the stuff is over-price or doesn’t work I’ll mention it

  50. johnny says:

    There’s a tool out there called website grader and it does pretty much everything scribe SEO does for free. Google it and give it a go before you make your mind.

    Just my two penneth’

    J

    • Lis says:

      I’ve used website grader Johnny- ages ago – yes quite useful for the price!

      • Angela says:

        Have you ever tried http://www.linkdiagnosis.com. Lis? Now that is truly an amazing website. It collects ALL the Google backlinks of competitors’ websites, so you can see where you can get more links. It’s really useful. Highly recommended.

        • Lis says:

          Thansk Angela – I am just running it on some sites I know well now – very handy little tool – and the right price!

  51. Francis David says:

    I was just goggling for SEO scribe and there was “SEO Scribe Scam” helped me land in your website. Its amazing so many comments and I spent more time reading everything.

    Before searching, I was about to buy this, but once I saw Brian Clark mentioning “I’d advise you change that, or our next conversation will be about libel” led me not to buy the product.

    I am new to this site and will visit again to learn and find more people here.

    Thanks lis for your review! Saved me few $$$

  52. Drake says:

    Wow. serious storm in a teacup.

    I honestly don’t buy what most websites are selling and I tend to investigate pretty thoroughly. I’d have to say that in all honesty, it was not anything that came from this site which would compel me to not buy the product, but the behavior of Mr Clark.

    Having read these comments and seen the personal attacks, which are extraordinarily telling, I saw no defense of the product, but instead personal attacks. The common sense response to this would have been to defend your product and not attack someone on a personal level who did not attack you, but a product.

    I”m new here, but I am with those who are NOT new here. It is your blatant neglect to offer real commentary and real defense of your product and your own actions which have negated any impulse I might have had to buy your products.

    I tend to look at this things way. Someone who does not have a reasonable skill at communication on their own doesn’t have a hope in hell of producing a product that does. If your sales fail I’d say it is your own level of rage and bad behavior rather than coming here and communicating effectively to establish that not only was your product a fair deal, but that you were a reasonable person.

    It would have been quite easy to impress us all by simply saying. you’re right. every product has problems and I’m so happy that you pointed those out.. we’ll do our best to address them. Instead you launched into a diatribe about the ignorance and stupidity of your host.. which behavior speaks volumes about your own character and intellect to those who are listening.

    It was nothing that this website offered that told me that this was a bad deal. it was the behavior and the commentary of the man who came to defend it.

  53. Nathan Hangen - Digital Emperor says:

    In fairness to Brian, you do try to make a living bashing everything he sells. I’m not going to comment on my use of Scribe, but dang, where’s the beef?

    • Lis says:

      @Nathan – thanks for stopping by.
      Actually no most of my affiliate sales probably come from people NOT searching for anything that Brian produces – his products really not provide that much search traffic when you can see the real figures. Oh and its nothing about Brian – its all about the products – once you are on one list you get the next upsell all the time (as you well know) – I had third tribe marketing advertised to be and then SEO scribe was launched within that paid forum – it seemed fair to investigate…

  54. Claudia (Reveal) says:

    Wow, what a bully! I’m really surprised at the attitude Brian showed here. I paid for two of his products in the past and never got much out of them. (BTW Lissie I’m really enjoying TKA which you introduced me to).

  55. Greg says:

    Lis – I tried to visit the SEO Quake site, but the link no longer works. Is that service still out there?

    thanks

  56. Dana says:

    I am glad that I am always cautious for paid SEO Tools (including the Scribe SEO) so not yet buy this Scribe SEO (yeah … I plan to buy it back then to improve my adsense earning). From your review, it seems I better use the google external keyword tool for it.

  57. Nick says:

    I’ve been doing the SEO for my law firm’s website (the benefits of being a solo attorney). Anyhow, thanks for this article, it provided some good insight into good SEO techniques!

  58. family portraits arlington, wa says:

    You’d think he’d have better business sense than to be so negative under an account that bears the name of his main site. It definitely doesn’t look good when a business person is more interested in addressing possible “libel” and any money they are losing as a result.

  59. SaltyDroid says:

    I just wanted to say Hi to Brian Clark … because I don’t like him … and I really like saying Hi to people I don’t like.

    Hi Brian.

    I see you threatened to sue Lis here :: and called her a “fool” :: because she had the audacity to see through your thin gimmick. That’s cool. You’re such a cool guy … but that’s just my sarcastic opinion so please don’t sue me with your big mean “libel” lawyers.

    Good job Lis Sowerbutts! Brian’s seems so concerned that this story is only getting out to 367 people … that sounds like just the sort of thing I might be able to help with.

    Toodles.

    • Nat says:

      It appears you have already started helping with that, Salty. I see there are some new posts here all of a sudden ;-)

      I’m curious – did Brian sue you Lis? I’ve always had a pretty positive opinion of him as far as Copyblogger goes, but this thread has made me rethink that. He sounds like a real jerk.

      I don’t have any experience with Scribe SEO, but it seemed like an awful lot of money for what you get when I looked at it a while back. And judging by some of Brian’s responses here, it may do more harm than good if it’s based on what he thinks he knows.

      A couple of his comments are just flat-out wrong, and I say that with over six years of SEO experience behind me. Actually testing and tracking things, not just doing what I think works.

      I don’t know if you’re still reading this Brian, but your responses here have soured at least one person (me) who respected you before seeing this.

      • Lis says:

        @Nat no he didn’t sue me – as Salty described libel law – you can’t be sued for your honest opinion – it seems lots of people don’t understand that! Brian for one does understand that – assuming he is an ex-lawyer as he describes himself. Ironically as a non-American I seem to have more respect for freedom of speech than he does.

        You have SEO right in one – its all about testing and observing and tweaking – its not rocket science – Salty’s post was a perfect example of how you can right in your own style and still have good on page SEO!

  60. Interesting post, and the comments are off the chain. I’m surprised by Clark’s reaction to this post. Seems to me the more appropriate reaction would have been to address the shortcomings outlined in the post and try to show why they’re not really shortcomings at all. But what do I know, I’m just a fool following another fool.

  61. NotSoHumble says:

    It’s great when someone sees a shiny-new-magic-button for what it is, a pile of dung sprayed with a goldish color to sparkle extra bright in the sun.

    And it’s natural that the dung-peddler will try and stop prospective customers from scraping of the color, showing the pile of dung for what it is. But threats of legal action? Come on, Brian, grow the fuck up. Stop acting like a spoiled little brat. You’ve just made my “ignore”-list. If anything, no matter how great others say it is, has your name on it, as of now i’m not seeing it.

    Sometimes a pile of dung is just a pile of dung, even if it has a bright and shiny button.

  62. Hi Lissie,
    Expect a big influx of visitors.
    I’ve sent you a facebook message :-)

    regards,
    Eric G.

  63. Shane says:

    Wow, looks like I’m already late to the party!

    Brilliant example of how a “marketer” can alienate tons of prospects and loose all his credibility outside of his already established realm of influence.
    As Allyn so eloquently pointed out, a post like this would have been a great opportunity for Brian Clark to shine.

    As any marketer will know, when you create a product, there will be people who love it right away, there will be people who aren’t sure and there will be people who hate it right away.

    Trying to convince the people who hate it right away is usually a loosing battle. But this post is not, I think, written by someone from that camp. More importantly, most of the readers of this post are not from that camp. Most of them are going to be in the “not sure” category.
    And with the right kind of communication, you can translate the value of your product (if it has value) in such a way that many will go from “not sure” to “now I get it!”.

    That’s called marketing.

    The opposite of that would be the childish attempt at bullying and personal attacks that Mr. Clark displayed.

    That’s called “being an idiot”.

    • Lis says:

      I’ve got to say that the 2 posts I’ve done over the years where the object of my review came out and threatened to sue me have been the easiest to rank – perfect viral marketing strategy -maybe!

  64. Jess C. says:

    Y’all are hilarious. As a chest-thumping, heart-pumping Brian Clark lover, I find this review and thread to be positively ridiculous.

    If Ms. Sowerbutts associated the word “scam” with his product (which is a malicious misrepresentation), he did exactly what he was supposed to do… He protected the name of his product when someone with limited experience and an obvious vendetta against him decided to attack.

    Sure, he could have offered her advice on the product regarding proper use. He’s always been very responsive to me. Of course, I email or use contact forms to ask questions… I don’t publish libelous rants disguised as informed opinions. For whatever reason, people don’t often take kindly to the approach Lis chose.

    I found this post from a Twitter link and will not be back to this site.

    • Lis says:

      Nice Jess that you found the post via Twitter – shame you didn’t stay long enough to read it and your beloved leaders comments

    • rob sellen says:

      “As a chest-thumping, heart-pumping Brian Clark lover”

      Poor woman. :) I’ll ask, how much of your money had HE had?

      “He protected the name of his product when someone with limited experience and an obvious vendetta against him decided to attack.”

      What a crock of shit! Anyone paying that for that crap needs to get their shit together… so is Andy Beard wrong, someone with FAR more nous in this game than Clarky boy. Because Andy agreed with this post 100% and he knows his seo.

      “Sure, he could have offered her advice on the product regarding proper use.”

      He chose not too, what a good business man, *sigh, dumb springs to mind!

      “He’s always been very responsive to me.”

      Because you threw money at him, maybe?

      “Of course, I email or use contact forms to ask questions…”

      And? so what? not all of us want to email him,, we ain’t sheep like you.

      “I don’t publish libelous rants disguised as informed opinions.”

      HOW so you know what is “informed opinions” here? You don’t, you know jack shit, as you said you are just a “chest-thumping, heart-pumping Brian Clark lover” and jumping in MISinformed… lol at the irony.

      Where is the libel?

      Go back to chatting up Clarky boy. :)

      You are all at sea, you should wake up sometime.

  65. Vaibhav Kanwal says:

    I feel a bit saddened by the mud slinging going on here. I am an SEO consultant myself and I am using the SEO Scribe plugin.

    Is it worth the money? NO.
    Is it worth the time it saves me framing and re-framing my Meta stuff – YES

    So, its a good product if you can afford it. If you are the sort of person, you’d rather spend 15 min more on a post than pay $17/month then cool, that’s your way of doing things and no one is complaining.

    Bad publicity sells more than good and that is exactly what Lis has done here. More people are attracted to SCAM or not than an honest Good or not?

    If this was supposed to be an honest opinion, you should have let it be. An opinion. Turning into this useless fight is not very pleasing to say the list. Brian has developed a software and it does what it claims to do however, I do agree he was not “nice” in saying what he did.

    • Lis says:

      Vaibhav – Brian didn’t devleop the software – and he doesn’t claim to have – he markets it – so really he’s the one who should have been able to answer the concerns I raised – which he didn’t he chose to hurl threats instead – so who started the “fight” exactly?

  66. teerrin says:

    Hi,there

    Thanks for visit my site. I am seo beginner.

  67. It’s great when someone sees a shiny-new-magic-button for what it is, a pile of dung sprayed with a goldish color to sparkle extra bright in the sun. And as far as threats go, no threats. Just a promise. You can attack me based on your misguided opinions all you want.

  68. Been looking at doing SEO and improving the web design on my site for a while, so this website has been really useful. Easy read also, so thank you!

  69. startupking says:

    Lis, thanks so much for this thorough, well written review. I was considering Scribe at one point, but I’ll be sure to steer clear!

    And Brian, I would’ve thought you’d respond with tact and some humility, but was shocked at your threatening tone and overall response. Brutal dude. Just brutal.

  70. SeoLife says:

    Lis I would just like to thank you for an open an honest review, it’s very rare these days to find someone who is actually willing to do this, the rest all seem to be the snake oil salesmen.

    I would just like to add that this is the first time I’ve come across this blog, and I was on the verge of buying this plugin until I read the responses by the developer Brian. He is clearly not interested in trying to fix a sub standard product and more interested in bullying people that dare speak the truth about this rubbish plugin. Anybody reading this comment read the comments above from the developer Brian and make up your own mind.

  71. I actually don’t think he deserves any slack due to the fact that he left more than one comment, some several hours apart giving him plenty of opportunity to take another tack, especially after seeing the reactions of some of the commentators. Did he take the opportunity. Trying to convince the people who hate it right away is usually a loosing battle. But this post is not, I think, written by someone from that camp. More importantly, most of the readers of this post are not from that camp. Most of them are going to be in the “not sure” category. Thank you.

  72. I am not looking at this from an international search point of view. I do not want clients all around the world and do not want to send my teams around the world. I am optimizing on the local search engines here, where there is an opportunity. A really good one. We have done our research and we only need 5 of the right people coming to my site a day for our strategy to work here. Thank you.

  73. Haroun Kola says:

    I just bought Premise, and now reading this post about Scribe is making me regret this decision. Brian Clarke, you aren’t a nice person!

  74. Esmael says:

    Hi Lis,

    I just want to clear something out about SEO Scribe. Is it a software or is it a plugin to be installed in WordPress? I’m a Drupal user and I wonder if I can use Scribe on my website.

  75. sam says:

    thank you for posting this review. it exposes Brian Clark for what he is (a jerk) By putting you down and saying Rae Hoffman, Michael Gray, and Stephan Spencer are experts is misleading. The people he mentions are affiliate marketers who promote him and profit from this sales. The reviews on his products that dominate the SERPs are from paid affiliates. Scribe and the Genesis Theme are IMO garbage overpriced products. There are free tools and themes that are much better.

  76. Marisa Wright says:

    I wish I’d read this before I wasted my time signing up for SEOScribe!

    Mind you, I lasted less than a month and cancelled immediately, because it was very quickly obvious it doesn’t do what it claims. Part of the problem, I think, is that it does something else altogether, which might be useful to some people – so maybe it’s the advertising that’s at fault.

    Its basic function is a keyword density checker. Not a checker for MY keywords – there’s no option to tell the program which keywords you’re targeting – just a keyword density checker, like the free ones you can find all over the internet.

    But then it compares those words with popular search terms. So what it actually does is suggest which words in your text would make good keywords. So for people with no clue how to choose a keyword, I suppose it could be a useful tool.

    • Lis says:

      You could well be right Marisa – but its a bit arse about don’t you think. You’ll better off teaching people what a keyword is – of course you don’t make any money selling fish if you teach someone to catch their own LOL

  77. Nishadha says:

    Never used Scribe SEO and I doubt I ever will, Just read this post because it was linked from the Wizzley review, really enjoyed the comments :-) .

  78. Rob says:

    I love how this post keeps coming up in the search engines…years later! That’s how I found this when considering Scribe SEO. Now, I won’t buy it. Brian Clark is an arrogant bully and his treatment of you is very rude. That tells me a lot about how he runs his business. Considering that your post is still generating traffic year after year and ranks on the first page for the keyword “scribe seo”, I think Brian Clark ought to take SEO lessons from YOU!

  79. Stan@joe fl says:

    Scribe SEO The reviews on his products that dominate the SERPs are from paid affiliates. Scribe and the Genesis Theme are IMO garbage overpriced products. There are free tools and themes that are much better.

  80. Zachary@video marketing,video marketing tips,video marketing statistics says:

    Great blog you have here but I was curious about if you knew of any message boards that cover the same topics talked about here?

    I’d really love to be a part of community where I can get suggestions from other experienced people that share the same interest. If you have any recommendations, please let me know. Kudos!

Trackbacks

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