Category Archives: Digital Marketing

Global Digital Statistics 2014

Here’s the 2014 Global Digital Statistics, Stats & Facts SlideShare presentation from the guys at We Are Social. It features digital stats like:

  • 2.5 Billion People are Online
  • 1.8 Billions are on Social Networks
  • Top Social Networks added 135 Million users in 2013
  • Facebook now has 1.184 Billion Users

It may be 183 pages, but well worth the look, grab a cuppa and enjoy!

The future of understanding just who is your ‘true audience’ starts….now.

I love the transparency of digital, ‘true’ audience data is the one thing that traditional media (no matter how much is invested in pre and post research) cannot deliver. Amscreen can now detect the age, gender and more of each person that views their Ad Platforms which are primarily environment based. If this type of true-data isn’t wort having for future thinking for your brand, product or service, I don’t know what is. Just to clarify – I do believe in the power of traditional media and develop creative and planning for it frequently, it has occupied a valuable place for decades, and still does. Traditional is also fighting back by evolving to ‘tradigital’ with enhance digital integration – so it’s game on.

When a viral video is not a viral video!

This is new from navigation systems TomTom… a take off of some of the top videos that have gone viral this year… Does it work? or is it just a little too lame to go anywhere?

I think it is a good attempt but don’t think it will get the cut through that TomTom may be expecting. In saying that is always refreshing to see a brand take a creative approach to their marketing and be willing to take a risk with something new.

What do you think about this approach?

Dispelling the Myth of SEO

Like in any industry, SEO has its own our clowns and self-proclaimed gurus who take people’s money and do nothing. This, is surprisingly, not the worst-case scenario. Some “experts” will actually damage your website’s reputation with search engines by taking risky shortcuts which may show only temporary results.

It’s not surprising that many agencies, marketing and web professionals see SEO as black art surrounded by mystery, smoke and mirrors. Some claim that there is no such thing as “SEO”. If you write good content and structure your website well rankings will follow.

“Build it and they will come?”

Here’s one such example which made me laugh, not because the author is wrong but because it reveals a simplistic, child-like view, to something as complex as search engine marketing:

“If your site has been built properly, then there is no need for additional optimization.”

If you share the views of the author of above article then you’ve already lost touch. Read on however, and regain your faith in once strange and esoteric world of SEO. This time, however, with tangible facts and data. Yes, hard, factual, objective data and some pretty damn good ideas too.

Let me start with website re-design. This is where things go wrong all the time.

 

WEBSITE REDESIGN

A website with great organic traffic and search engine performance may go through re-design for any number of reasons:

  • Change in management (something to prove)
  • Periodic design refresh (keeping up with the times)
  • Kitty see. Kitty do. (keeping up with the Joneses)
  • Company structure or branding change
  • Customer feedback and user experience
  • Adding new functionality

 

That’s great but did you remember some of these things?

 

  • Has URL structure changed?
  • Have you 301’ed your old pages?
  • Can you still reach the old version of the website creating duplicate content?
  • Are there many links now pointing to non-existent content (404 pages)?
  • What’s in your title tags? Why?
  • Are words people expect to find you for part of your website copy?
  • Do you have too few pages? Too many?
  • Have you changed your robots.txt to allow indexing of the live site?

 

The above are not trivial issues and can seriously harm website’s performance in search engines if misconfigured or ignored.  OK, so we fix all this and more so does that mean that we’re done?

Nope.

 

WHAT GOES WHERE AND WHY?

Many agencies are capable of handling these appropriately, but fail to think strategically prior to website re-design. I’ll illustrate in the next few examples. Let’s take a look at this search result snippet:

Now compare it with Sony Australia:

 

As you can see one is treated as a local business and the other as a brand with fully expanded sitelinks. One has well-written description, the other shows random boilerplate content. This not only reflects the professionalism of the company but also aids with conversions through impact on click-through rate (CTR).

 

SO WHAT CAN BE DONE? 

  • Optimise Title
  • Add Custom Description
  • Manage Locations
  • Prioritise Sitelinks

 

 

All this and you still won’t get the desired results. Why? Because somebody made a decision to set up the site on various sub domains such as http://www.lighting.philips.com.au/ so search engines may treat each one as a separate website.

Ignoring the sub domain issue related to this specific case, things look fairly straightforward so far. Change the titles, descriptions and all the other elements and you’ll be fine. Once you start doing it, however, you realise that the website may have 12,000 pages. Should it? Recently I proposed a contemporary framework for handling enterprise SEO and I highly recommend you read it if you are involved in large-scale projects.

 

 

 

 

To decide what will be the focus of each page could take an enormous amount of time. To add to the problem, in order to come up with a really good title tag and meta description it can take an hour or more of brainstorming, especially for high value pages. It’s kind of like writing ad copy for AdWords. Suddenly you realise this is a monumental task. What can you do?

 

MEASURING DATE & ESSENTIAL TOOLS

In order to decide what goes where you need to dive into data and do a lot of drilling, filtering, selection and elimination. With data you derive you have a task of allocation. What goes to what page and are there any competing pages and resources that could be and should be merged. It’s time to turn to tools. Here are two bare essentials:

 

 

Taking a traffic and performance snapshot when starting SEO will not only help you benchmark later on but will also give you a solid starting point for moving forward and leaning from existing data.

Here are a few examples of items/metrics you want to measure:

 

Organic Traffic (Create your own or use existing advanced segment in Analytics)

  • Conversions
  • Landing Pages
  • Exit Pages
  • Keywords
  • Top referrers
  • Pages with referrers
  • eCommerce (where applicable)

 

Remember to annotate your timeline if you make any significant changes so you can link it with any consequent impact on traffic.In Google Webmaster Tools observe the following:

 

Search Queries Phrases

  • Impressions
  • CTR
  • Clicks
  • Average Position
  • Trend metrics

 

 

 

Remember to filter the data to your desired platform and geographic location.  Also retrieve the following data:

 

  • Crawl errors
  • Index status
  • Links to your site
  • HTML improvements
  • Social metrics (+1)

 

If applicable consider applying:

 

 

These are all measurable metrics which can be tied in with the performance of your SEO campaign. Remember there is no such thing as an absolute ranking position anymore. Users will see different results based on many different factors including:

 

  • Device / Platform
  • Geographic Location
  • Result Personalisation
  • Social Activity & Connections

 

Ultimate gauge for the effectiveness of any marketing activity is naturally the return on investment. Do not treat “SEO” in simplistic terms, however, as well-optimised websites contribute to a multitude of channels and aid conversion.The best thing you can do is set up tight attribution models in order to understand what contributed to what extend in the purchase/signup cycle of your customers.

 

PREDICTING RETURN ON INVESTMENT

Most of your clients want to see the following scenario:

X goes in, Y comes out.

You need to have an answer ready for them. This is generally not a problem when it comes to your PPC campaigns or affiliate marketing. What about SEO and organic traffic?We battled this problem for a while and finally developed a type of keyword targeting methodology which is capable of producing traffic impact and financial scenarios by observing the existing data available for the website.

Here’s what we’ve come up with:

 

 

As you can see, this is a heatmap indicating click-through rates based on ranking of phrases. What’s special about it though is that it was not based on hundreds nor thousands of general websites. We based this calculation on data available from a single website. This means the calculation is highly accurate to their own specific circumstances.

With this knowledge we can then start modelling and predict the traffic impact of each phrase based on its movement in results.

 

 

 

Next step is to assign financial gain with each phrase forming the final step in your ROI calculation. After this step you can prioritise work and set targets in line with the highest return and most immediate results.

 

 

To ensure the targets are realistic query qualitative parameters such as PageRank, MozRank or Flow Metrics to ascertain whether you’re going against a target too difficult to beat (e.g. trying to beat Amazon for books).

This type of report can really make a difference not only to the business itself, but can also make your life a whole lot easier when pitching to your management. Your client, COO or marketing director are more likely to understand the plain numbers and graphs instead of the usual SEO jargon.

 

THE FUTURE

We only just scratched the surface of what SEO has truly become, but hopefully this post opens up doors to more strategic thinking and new creative approaches to search engine marketing. Remember this – search engines are constantly evolving and new features are always on the horizont. In the last two years Google has integrated new layers into their search algorithm. The major search engine now features their own social network and a knowledge graph.

 

The key question is: Are you seeing the opportunities?

 

Written by: Dan Petrovic, Dejan SEO

The magic of communication

With so much technology at our fingertips, the ease in which we communicate is something that many of us take for granted. Our worlds are thrown into chaos and we realise just how dependent we are on technology when our email is down or a mobile phone is lost. Imagine if, until recently, you were unable to communicate freely or effectively. Imagine what social media sites like Facebook and Twitter would mean to you if you were deaf or unable to speak. The new ways in which we communicate are giving people a voice that, until recently, they did not have. We think that’s pretty magical!

Now, more than ever, government organisations and businesses, need to look at how their target audience communicates and ask themselves “is our message being heard? or is it falling on deaf ears?”

Yours in effective communication,
Andrea.

Origin Energy Sustainability Drive Campaign

Origin Energy Sustainable Drive

Early last year Origin Energy released a campaign called – Sustainability Drive Campaign.

The reasons for the campaign were simple; with the growing demand for energy, climate change became an issue and Australians started noticing their energy bills begin to rise.

People started to notice who their energy provider was and what they were offering. If they didn’t like what they saw, they began to shop around.

Origin Energy was already Australia’s leading ‘green’ energy provider, and they wanted to keep this lead on the other service providers. They needed to continue to ensure their customers that they could keep up with the growing energy demand, remain as green as possible and still be affordable.

So, they launched the Sustainability Drive. It was a national competition involving 80 homes in 4 streets across Australia and the aim was to encourage them to become more energy efficient, in order to reduce their energy bills, as well as share in up to $1M worth of sustainable technology.

All they had to do to be in the running was to get together with up to 20 of their neighbours and explain why they would all like to win. They could use text, images and video to push their reasons.

Origin communicated well online and they reached the masses. 8,950 individual streets entered and the competition received 45,000 nominations.

As we know, social media is proving daily to be a powerful tool. It can be beneficial to anyone’s business, no matter the size and industry. If you are smart and think about what gets people excited and involved, and how that can then relate to your business and product, the results, as seen above can be pretty amazing.

Origin Energy are obviously a large organisation with what I am assuming is a pretty great marketing budget. You don’t need to run a campaign at the same scale as they did. Get stuck into social media, make your customers do the work for you by talking about you via their social networks. If all you have to do to get people involved and happy to talk about your services and products is to give away something that is already in your  product offering, then that sounds like a good idea to me.

 

Yours with loads of energy,

Justine

 

 

Addicted to Pinterest

I admit it, I’m getting addicted to Pinterest. If you feel the same or, better, if you’re trying to take advantage from a marketing POV of people’s addiction to Pinterest, then you should check out this infographic that the guys at Flowtown recently put together.

 

Gentlemint – Pinterest for Men only

I’ve been using Pinterest now for only a few weeks and it has become yet another procrastination tool that I have become addicted to! If you haven’t seen Pinterest, check it out at www.pinterest.com or better still you can follow my boards @ http://pinterest.com/paul_vb/

BUT now I have found a second version of Pinterest called Gentlemint (http://gentlemint.com/). No the things that appeals to me about this one is that it’s a MEN ONLY version! That’s not to mean that it full of semi-naked women or fast cars or anything else you would like to stereotype men with! From what I have seen so far it is full of interesting posts of really interesting things, to a man at least! And that’s the appeal of Gentlemint for me. It’s not full of pretty dresses, high heels, latest gift-wrapping techniques or any other stereotypical terms used for what women like!

Just like Pinterest you can only create an account by being invited or application. I haven’t been approved as yet, but am looking forward to it! It is not limited to men only, there is no gender check on applying, but the content obviously must be ‘manly’!

And remember… Chuck Norris doesn’t read books. He stares them down until he gets the information he wants.

Yours in manliness,

Paul

One of the recent posts on Gentlemint…

Will you still Facebook when you’re dead?

ifidie is an app hosted by Facebook that allows you to leave a message that will only be published if you die. You install the app, record a video or write a message, then name three trustees from your Facebook friends. After you die, if all three of your trustees agree, the message will be posted on your wall. The app suggests you can leave a proper farewell, reveal a long-kept secret, or tell someone what you really think of them!

So, handy? Or creepy?

 

 

But wait, it gets creepier… ifidie used Facebook and Twitter check-ins to track where people were at certain points in time, and called them with the ominous message that DEATH CAN COME AT ANY TIME. The creepy all-knowing voice knew where they were and told them they must go to ifidie.com. They called thousands of people and not only did this attract media attention, it actually did increase the traffic to their website.

 

 

Yours in taking things too far,

Anya