Let's talk about Google's AI keynote this week. Episode 302: Sep 5, 2023

published18 days ago
8 min read

I'm making some big changes to newsletter! Let me tell you why.

I've been writing a lot lately about producing content that meets the needs of your audience and adds original, insightful information to the body of knowledge that's on the web already.

It made me think about my own writing. I love writing newsletter so much. It started as a way to quickly inform people about Panda and Penguin updates. As I learned more, I realized that if I committed myself to sharing in a weekly newsletter, I'd understand the important things better. Then somehow it became a 70+ page giganto-document.

This week I had a revelation when watching the Google Cloud Next keynote video I've included below. They spoke of creating a chatbot from your website content. They said you could do it in under two minutes.

They were right.

You can see more information here on my use of the Vertex generative AI app builder.

The SGE answers are fascinating - they sound just like me.

There were some issues though. Some answers were not completely accurate. And it looks like it may be expensive to put it live on my site. But I bet a lot of businesses are going to do wild things with these tools. Here's a link to Google's VertexAI if you want to test this out.

What fascinated me most though was the internal site search. It was really good at finding content, even amongst my gigantic newsletter pages, that was would be good to read to give me even more information than the SGE answer.

Then I had my epiphany.

Why am I not blogging?

So, starting now, whenever I cover a topic and want to add some insight or thoughts, I'm writing that as a blog post. And I'll link to it from this newsletter.

What is changing:

  • Paid subscribers still get a Google doc on Friday with one big long newsletter. Plus, the extra subscriber content.
  • "Subscriber content" is going to be renamed next week to "Extra Content". The extra content will usually contain my thoughts on what I've learned from the QRG, Google documents, patents and research. More here on how to subscribe.
  • There will be no more public version of newsletter on the web, only email. But there will be a few helpful new blog posts each week.
  • Emails will be better! You can read everything in here instead of having to click through to my website. This week's is still really long...but next week's will be more concise.

Thank you for bearing with me as I know I've made a lot of changes in the last year. My goal is to continue to provide as much helpful information as I can.

The latest on the August Core Update

The update is still rolling out. I haven’t analyzed it yet as it’s still rolling but I’ve covered what the community is seeing so far.

I have several sites I monitor that are seeing what look like very nice recoveries.

Here are a few more from the community:

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2:46 PM • Aug 28, 2023

Once the update is finished, I'll be digging in to sites and sharing more of my thoughts.

Google's Cloud Next Keynote blew my mind

I'd encourage you to watch this whole talk.

video preview

Most interesting to me were the bits about creating your own app with Google's generative AI capabilities. In this post I share how I created an SGE + Search app for my website in under two minutes.

Can Google really discount unnatural links?


Something strange is happening with canonicals in GSC

Rafa Martin brought a situation to my attention. Many people replied saying they were having the same issue.


How North Star Inbound Got 174 DA 75+ Links in Just 20 Months

(This section is new. I'm not widely accepting advertisers, but you will see more content from Nicole in newsletter. I have sent her work for many years and highly recommend her for helping you get good links.)

Hey everyone,

This week, I want to share a key strategy my team uses to land top-tier features in outlets like Fortune, Fast Company, The New York Times, and The Washington Post.

The secret? Relatability. It's all about connecting through shared experiences.

So, when crafting your digital PR stories, focus on moments that impact our daily lives but often go unnoticed.

You might wonder, how can you be sure these moments will make compelling stories if they haven't been widely discussed? Think about Seinfeld – a show about 'nothing' that became a massive hit. Relatable stories don't always need big buzz.

Take the subtitles campaign we ran, revealing how many Americans use them even for English shows. You might use them too – I certainly do. This story resonated with so many people, netting us around 700 placements.

Or consider the angriest airports story. We delved beyond the obvious gripes, exploring issues like noise, cold, bathrooms, and parking. This campaign scored over 400 placements.

Hope these insights help. For more tips, follow me here. To explore our work further, reach out here.


Nicole DeLeon · North Star Inbound

Thoughts on removing content if impacted by the helpful content system

I asked Danny Sullivan this question. His answer was vague.

More interesting SEO news & tips

Google Search is now blurring explicit imagery in search by default

John Mueller says it doesn’t matter if you use a 301 or 302 redirect

Martin Splitt says that if a page was indexed, it means it was rendered by Google.

Danny Sullivan says core updates do not change Google’s autocomplete suggestions.

SGE News

SGE is now available in Japan and India.

Here are some screenshots from the community.


Code Interpreter has been renamed to Advanced Data Analysis.

OpenAI announced ChatGPT Enterprise - more security and privacy, higher speed GPT-4 access, longer context windows, advanced data analysis capabilities and more. There is no price listed - you need to contact OpenAI to request access. I expect this will be pricey!

OpenAI has released a guide for teachers regarding ChatGPT.

More AI News

Google published an executive guide to generative AI.

Google released WeatherBench 2, an updated benchmark for evaluating and comparing next generation data-driven global weather forecast models based on machine learning.

Reddit has launched an AI powered keyword research tool.

Google researchers introduced Barkour, a new agility benchmark for quadruped robots consisting of an obstacle course inspired by dog competitions, to measure and encourage the development of dynamic, animal-like locomotion skills in robots.

OpenAI is on track to generate more than $1B in revenue over the next 12 months.

Local SEO

Why the &*$@ Does This Storage Business Rank For Restaurant Queries?

Joy Hawkins discovered that Google Business Profile performance insights mix organic and paid search data, unlike Google Search Console which filters out ads. This can lead to attributing drops in views or searches to SEO rather than ad campaign changes.

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Mike Blumenthal
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9:37 AM • Aug 30, 2023

This week's Subscriber content

I'm going to be re-naming this to "Extra content" next week as "Subscriber content" doesn't make sense. Even my subscribers who don't pay are still subscribers.

This week I dug into Google's patent on a topic called "information gain." This is likely the key to ranking alongside AI generated answers. And it may be the patent behind the helpful content system.

It's one of the main reasons why I started creating specific blog posts rather than one big newsletter each week. Each of the blog posts I wrote this week should add information gain to the web by providing new information that is not covered on other websites.

Read this week's Subscriber (extra) content.

If you're not a paid subscriber, it costs $18/m to get on my list. You'll get a Google doc each Friday with much more than is in the publicly available newsletter that I send out each week. And if you're not a paid subscriber, that's ok! I thoroughly love writing all of this information and love that you read it. :)

Marie's resources

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Work with Marie

I've changed up my site review options.

Now offering:

  • Brainstorming sessions with you/your team.
  • Traffic Drop assessment plus a thorough report
  • (NEW) Traffic Drop consultation

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Quality Raters' Guidelines Workbook

Written several years ago, but still very helpful today. This book sells multiple copies each week as it will help you analyze your site like a Google Quality Rater.

Reduced to $20

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