01- Mar2018
Posted By: DPadmin
16 Views

4 Tips to Integrate PR and SEO Efforts to Expand Your Digital Reach

In today’s digital marketing landscape, the once separate entities of search engine optimization and public relations are merging to form a new, hybrid department. As Google’s standards on quality content evolved, so too did the link-based strategies digital marketers always relied on to achieve strong search rankings. Google’s adjustments, starting with the Penguin update and evolving into an authority-based algorithm, shook the world of SEO. It quickly became evident that PR professionals were best suited to fill the void. Today, PR and SEO are integrating their efforts and skill sets so thoroughly, it is becoming increasingly difficult to distinguish one from the other.

In the last two to three years, close to 85 percent of our clients have integrated their PR and SEO efforts. At Brilliance, our content marketing efforts are leveraged by our PR team. While PR pitches to media partners, our SEO team pitches to bloggers and influencers. PR is tasked with acquiring high-quality, authoritative links while SEO uses PR contacts to generate authoritative links and mentions.

From Link Building to Link Baiting

Before the content marketing revolution, link building was the strategic foundation of SEO. The teams that did the work were largely made up of back-end technologists. As John Rampton points out in a recent article, this all changed when Google altered its algorithm to put a much higher premium on relevant, high-quality, authoritative content.

The old rules, which relied on massive link-building structures, suddenly no longer applied. The purpose of SEO was no longer to build links, but to make content on web pages so compelling that they served as bait for credible, established sites to link to them voluntarily.

This new SEO strategy grabbed the attention of large media companies, which public relations professionals have been practicing for generations.

PR and SEO: Perfect Together

As previously mentioned, SEO experts historically came from technical backgrounds. Their skills involved back-end operations and analytics. Meanwhile, PR professionals have always been relationship people. The most highly-coveted (and best paid) PR experts were those who could foster bonds with publishers, reporters and other media players. The problem was that their results were hard to measure and ROI was difficult to quantify.

Backed by the metric-based analytical skills of SEO experts, however, modern PR professionals can now reliably gauge the effectiveness of their campaigns. On the other side of the coin, SEO teams can leverage their PR partners’ relationships to earn the links that Google favors so heavily.

In fact, the individual skill sets of PR and SEO are so complementary that even their tools are starting to overlap.

Tools for Success

As Forbes also points out, content calendars, which were once a scheduling and management tool used exclusively by PR agents, are now being widely adopted by SEO teams.

Platforms like Help a Reporter Out pair journalists and content creators with experts eager to lend their credibility in exchange for a link. Squarely in the middle sits both the public relations professionals who manage those relationships and SEO teams that use the links to gain ground with Google. Both the SEO teams and PR teams that we’ve worked with are using platforms like HARO, PressRush, and Vocus.

Tips for Merging Your SEO and PR Efforts

Our experience integrating our PR and SEO teams taught us some valuable lessons:

Communicate

PR and SEO teams should create and share interdepartmental editorial calendars to avoid conflicts or work duplications.

Treat social media as an offshoot of search

Just as the line between PR and SEO becomes increasingly blurred, so too is the line between searching and social media. Search engines were long the domain of technical SEO professionals, and social media was the playground for bold, catchy PR campaigns. As a bigger chunk of audiences now use social for primary searching, SEO pros must apply their analytical skills to social campaigns and leverage social platforms for content promotion. We’ve had great success using Facebook Ads to amplify content shared on social, which has in turn generated powerful media mentions.

Target influencers

Links from large, well-established publications are the ultimate reward. A few links from top websites are far more valuable than lots of low-quality links from questionable sites. The problem is, however, that everyone is vying for their attention, so it is difficult to get them to notice your brand. Instead of targeting them directly, PR should focus on more readily available influencers in social media and blogging. A top publication is far more likely to take notice of a mention from an influencer than they are to respond to even the best direct pitch or press release. SEO can focus on medium and lower quality publications while PR hyper focuses on the higher end publications.

Respect the value of mentions

Jonathan Long, founder and CEO of Marketing Domination Media, stated that “implied links” will soon be as important as SEO advances. The best way to chase implied links, or frequent brand mentions that aren’t necessarily accompanied by actual links, is through PR campaigns.

Google’s love of compelling content has quickly created a merger between PR professionals and SEO teams. Once Google began penalizing virtually all SEO strategies that can be automated, the value of public relations as a complementary skill set became evident. Today, public relations and search engine optimization are two sides of the same coin. Although they will always retain their unique identities, they should no longer function as separate units. One depends on the other to spread content, drive branding, and of course, keep Google happy.

Source: 4 Tips to Integrate PR and SEO Efforts to Expand Your Digital Reach

12- Sep2017
Posted By: DPadmin
131 Views

SEO: What to Base Content Decisions On | Practical Ecommerce

Content is the first thing that comes to mind with search engine optimization. There is a process, however, to creating and optimizing strong content.

The process involves four separate tasks: data analysis, programmatic optimization, content creation, and manual optimization. These tasks are often performed by three teams: SEO, marketing, and IT.

This article covers the first of those four tasks, the critical data analysis. Data may not be sexy to most people. But strong data is the basis of every good SEO plan. Do not skip this first step in the content optimization process for any reason, no matter how quickly you need to move. Poor data inevitably leads to poor execution.

Keyword Research

Keyword data shows the potential demand that each keyword concept holds based on how many searches are conducted for that concept in an average month. Demand is an important consideration. It is separate from performance. Demand identifies how strongly you could be driving traffic and revenue to your site for specific keyword concepts. Performance identifies how well you have already done so.

Keyword data shows the potential demand that each keyword concept holds based on how many searches are conducted for that concept in an average month.

The difference between the two is your missed opportunity, which organic search competitors are capitalizing on. (For additional details, see my how-to articles on keyword research planning and execution.)

Search Engine Rankings Data

This data is a little trickier to get without an enterprise SEO platform like Searchmetrics or BrightEdge, or a dedicated search rankings tool. If you cannot afford ranking tools and must do it manually, at least sign out of your search engine accounts and open an incognito window. This is not a foolproof technique, but it’s better than nothing.

When collecting rankings data in the U.S., it makes the most sense to use Google as the engine to target based on the large percentage of traffic it drives. In Google, collect not just the position that individual keywords are ranking at, but also the URL that ranks for that keyword.

Google Search Console Search Query Report

Sadly, the Search Console “queries” report (Search Console > Search Traffic > Search Analytics > Queries) will only yield 2,000 search queries, but it’s the only reliable source of keyword data for Google searches. Everything else is either estimated or inaccurate based on the keyword “not provided” challenge that SEO professionals have faced since the search engines began stripping search query information from referral strings by default in October 2011.

An important aside: Do not use your web analytics’ natural search keywords report as a substitute for this data. It is not accurate, and hasn’t been for years.

Google Search Console also provides average rankings for each keyword. It’s a good idea to keep all the data that any report contains, but you’ll especially want the rankings data because it is the only accurate indicator of Google’s true average ranking for your site.

While the online keyword report showing all 2,000 search queries allows you to click deeper to see all of the URLs that drove natural search impressions and traffic for that keyword, unfortunately there’s no way to download that information. That pairing of a keyword that ranks and the URL that ranks for it can still only be found in bulk with a third-party rankings tool.

SEO Keyword Data Mash up

Using VLOOKUP formulas in Excel, create a worksheet that contains a row for every keyword with columns showing the values from keyword research, rankings, and Google Search Console search query reports. This mash up will inform the next three steps. Save it, update it regularly, and consult it religiously for every important keyword or content-based decision you make.

Web Analytics Sessions and Revenue

While not keyword based, the reports showing sessions or visits, and orders and revenue, by natural search page or URL are another important source of content optimization information.

Whether your analytics platform is Google Analytics, Adobe Analytic, Coremetrics, or something else, your natural search landing page report is one of the most critical tools for determining everything from how well your content is performing today to how well it should perform tomorrow and how you should get there.

If you have the support of an analytics team, it may be tempting to rely on it to do the pulling and analysis of the data for you. Resist that temptation.

If you have the support of an analytics team, it may be tempting to rely on it to do the pulling and analysis of the data for you. Resist that temptation.

To be sure, consult with your analytics experts to get a recommendation on which reports to use in which profiles to get to the correct data that you need: visits or sessions, and orders and revenue. But data analysis inevitably leads to additional questions that can only be answered with additional data.

Rather than requesting and waiting for additional reports to be pulled for different timeframes and with different levels of granularity, it’s much more productive to become familiar enough with the analytics tool to extract the accurate data yourself. You’ll also get a better feel for the data when you’re actually using the tool.

Initiatives, such as supporting new product launches and the need to boost sales in certain areas, will also feed into decisions about which content to create and optimize. But they shouldn’t be the only information you reply on to drive your SEO content plan. If one-time initiatives supersede potential and performance data, your SEO plan will be primarily reactive as opposed to driving broad, strong performance.

 

Source: SEO: What to Base Content Decisions On | Practical Ecommerce

11- Aug2017
Posted By: DPadmin
128 Views

How to Target Different Cities Without Hurting Your SEO

Done right, city pages can be an integral part of a local SEO strategy. Done poorly, they can get you penalized, or worse. Here’s the right way to do it.

City Pages: Good or Bad for SEO?

Google became critical of pages that do not add additional value to a customer a few years ago. They initially rolled this out algorithmically as the Panda algorithm, which penalized sites for using what Google considered poor content techniques. This was initially targeted at doorway pages, article spinning, and various other nefarious methods.

However, a more common (and generally more legitimate) type of content was caught in this algorithm as well: the city page. The Panda algorithm worked so well that Google integrated it into their main algorithm, and it now evaluates sites in real time.

For nearly a decade, local business owners have created pages around individual cities that they service, in hopes of catching someone looking for items in a particular town, borough, or neighborhood.

So, on the surface, what you’re proposing isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The tricky part is making sure that each page provides some unique value to the visitor.

And you have to be honest with yourself as to whether you’re providing value. The search engines know if all you change is one or two words here and there. They still consider that duplicate content.

If the content is almost completely identical except for unusual terms like “arms-on” instead of “hands-on” and it’s pretty clear that it was written by a machine, Google will flag it. Pages like that are what will trigger the Panda part of the algorithm.

Make Your Most Important City Pages Unique

My recommendation is to focus only on those pages that are most important to you – don’t make a page for every small town in the North Georgia mountains. If you want to list out all the cities in a region, just list them on the page – you don’t need an individual page for each city to rank in most cases.

In terms of making the pages different, write original content for each area or city. Focus on what makes that city unique or different, but give it value beyond what you can get in a census listing.

Too often, I see city pages that have just restated population data that they could have gotten anywhere else.

  • If you offer services in real estate, talk about the way the community in that area differs.
  • If you offer plumbing, mention that a common problem in that area is hard water.
  • If you’re a florist, talk about the climate, or how you source or grow plants in the area.

Find ways to make it different and unique so that you’ll actually add some information for the potential customer. In addition to making Google like the page better, it also gives the consumer confidence that you know the area and can really address their needs.

And finally, these listed locations should appear on all versions of the website – a common problem is that site owners will only have these links appear on a desktop site, but if you access the site on tablet or mobile, the links go away.

Summary

Because Google will be moving to a mobile-first algorithm, not having those links on the mobile site may make them drop out of the index. At worst, it could make it look like you’re trying to hide these pages; that they don’t add value.

Done right, city pages can be an integral part of a local SEO strategy.

Done poorly, city pages can get you penalized – or worse.

Source: How to Target Different Cities Without Hurting Your SEO

11- Aug2017
Posted By: DPadmin
138 Views

Five Reasons Why Entrepreneurs Should Consider SEO As An Investment

Small businesses can compete with large companies if they keep in mind that search engine optimization is a marathon, not a sprint.

Entrepreneurs who are new to online marketing strategies may have read somewhere that search engine optimization is dead. While most people may believe that the era of the SEO is long gone, Trond Lyngbo of Search Engine Land wrote a list of reasons a few years ago about why entrepreneurs should be optimistic with their investment in SEO.

Contrary to popular belief, the so-called “death” of SEO is just a rumor. According to Lyngbo, “The digital marketing strategy is not a cost but an investment.” Rumors become irrelevant if entrepreneurs look at what top Google placement can do for business growth over the coming years.

With over a decade of experience and knowledge in the online marketing field, I agree with his reasoning on the importance of investing in SEO as an entrepreneur and how impactful the results can be. Therefore, I have five reasons for entrepreneurs to consider search engine optimization as a long-term investment instead of a cost:

It’s cost-effective.

The No. 1 reason why I find SEO to be a smart investment for entrepreneurs is the cost effectiveness. Almost any business can hire a specialist to help grow their business by shifting around unnecessary expenses or cutting advertising mediums that aren’t producing. With proper optimization, businesses can expect long-term results and benefits. Unfortunately, we should also consider how much we spend for the service. Forbes contributor Jayson DeMers recently wrote about the dangers of “cheap” SEO services. You can expect low-quality content, black hat techniques, and inexperienced optimizers usinga cheap SEO. Look for a reliable professional with a track record and a knowledge that surpasses textbook answers. Overall, your investment in a sound digital marketing strategy is crucial to your business growth and success.

It levels the competition.

I often encourage my clients to dream big because I know we can dominate their competition online. With the help of proper optimization, you can reach your target audience with efficiency. Rebecca Stickler, a content marketing specialist, wrote, “With a strong SEO strategy, your small business can compete with even the biggest business organizations.

The biggest advantage of online marketing is that it levels the playing field for small businesses. The highest rank doesn’t go to the company with the most money, but instead goes to the business that understands and deploys effective SEO techniques.

It can yield attractive long-term results.

Rhea Drysdale, CEO of Outspoken Media, told a Search Engine Land writer that “website owners should invest in long-term goals rather than the short-term goals.” She also pointed out that short-term goals will do more harm than good to the business. Although instant reward from a pay-per-click campaign might be enticing, it is better to invest in slow yet effective long-term SEO results that can yield a much higher ROI over time. Google pays attention to how fast links are built to a site. Because of this, entrepreneurs should focus on building their business toward the top with a slow-yet-consistent pace.

In an interview, Lane Ginsberg of Freedom Retirement Advisors told me that, “Investing in your business is a lot like investing in stocks: The short-term stuff can be exciting and can bring some results, however, the long-term investment is where you really see the payoff, but it requires patience and confidence.”

It helps people find your business.

In our modern, digital world, information is just a few clicks away for anyone at any moment. “Times have changed,” Jason Hennessey wrote a few years ago in a Business Insider article: “SEO marketing campaigns ensure businesses make a unique impression to connect with customers.”

With the accessibility of the internet, most people turn to search engines for anything and everything. A well-optimized website can reach new audiences across the globe. With quality content, proper keyword research, the right use of social media platforms and other marketing techniques, your business will be visible to potential consumers across the internet.

Source: Five Reasons Why Entrepreneurs Should Consider SEO As An Investment

11- Aug2017
Posted By: DPadmin
345 Views

The 4 Ps of SEO & digital marketing

Great SEO does not exist in a bubble, but is part of a broader marketing framework. Columnist Marcus Miller explains how an awareness and understanding of this framework can improve SEO performance.

It’s a peculiar time to be a marketer. Many of us in the SEO world, myself included, are not traditionally trained as marketers. In fact, I studied computer science and was initially a web and software developer.

My marketing career was a fortunate accident — a case of being in the right place at the right time. I was working developing e-commerce sites, and when that job was done, the question soon became, How do we get more traffic and more customers? This led me into the new and exciting world of SEO circa 1999.

Of course, there is more to marketing than just getting highly ranked on search engines, and it took me a while to figure this out. But over the years working as an SEO, I have learned the value of more traditional marketing processes and how they relate to SEO.

Search engines want to connect people with the best possible results — so user engagement and satisfaction is likely an SEO ranking factor. Certainly, on-page signals and links are still super-important, but these won’t help if users do not engage with your site. SEO is now firmly a part of the overall marketing process, and good marketing will only help improve rankings and drive more traffic.

And so it follows that the SEOs I respect and admire are all highly savvy marketers. It’s not enough to focus on delivering more traffic. To do great SEO in 2017 and beyond, you have to be a great marketer.

In this article, I am going to look at the marketing mix and a classic marketing tool known as “the 4 Ps of marketing.” I’ll discuss how you can use this tool to improve your marketing and SEO.

The 4 Ps of marketing

The classic definition of marketing is simply “putting the right product in the right place, at the right price, at the right time.”

Stripping away the complexity can be powerful. The 4 Ps of marketing helps us here by focusing on these four key areas:

  • Product
  • Price
  • Place
  • Promotion

As it happens, SEO does a lot right by default. When a user searches is certainly the right time, and a search engine is often the right place. Yet, we also have to ensure the product and the price are right as well — after all, there will be a lot of competition on that search engine’s results page. And, of course, there is more to digital marketing than just search engines, however important they may be.

Let’s have a look at each of these four key areas:

Product/service

Who are your customers? What are their goals? What jobs do they have to perform that you could do better? What are their pains? Ultimately, how does your product help your customer? Understanding your customer and how your product relates to their needs is fundamental to your pricing and promotion of your product (or service).

At my agency, for example, we provide a digital marketing service. This helps our customers achieve their business goals and takes away the work and pain involved in trying to stay abreast of the digital marketing landscape. We try to save our customers time and money and improve their results, so they can focus on doing what they do best.

Your product or service is the foundation of your marketing approach. You need absolute clarity here. Price and promotion will all be influenced by your product.

Getting found is only half the battle — you have to convince your prospective customers that your product or service can deliver.

Price

Price is intrinsically tied to value. But price must also consider established price points in your industry. If you are too expensive, your product won’t sell, no matter how desirable. If you are too cheap, profit margins will suffer.

There is something of a pendulum with price, where a lower price will typically generate more sales, but a higher price will generate more profits. You have to find what your perfect balance is here, and that will depend on your marketplace and lead generation strategies.

SEO is a great example of how difficult pricing can be. Typical wisdom will say that SEO costs around $100 an hour. However, when we spent some time analyzing SEO packages and SEO prices, we found some very different perspectives on what people were willing to pay — particularly when it came to small business SEO services.

Pricing is fundamental, and you need to carefully consider price points to ensure you can deliver the service but still make a profit. Brand and online reputation will play into this, of course, but most of us are not Apple — so you might be able to pull off being 10 percent more expensive than a competitor if your product is right, but push too hard on the pricing and you will typically lose work.

Place

Where will customers look for your product? Will your customers search for you? Will you generate business through offline channels or in person? Does your marketing mix include a combination of online and offline marketing channels?

If you are an emergency plumber, then people are going to grab their phone and go straight to Google, so that one is fairly obvious. But, for many services, different people will buy in different ways: networking, referrals, search engines and so forth. Determine where your customers are and where you need to be to sell to them.

Promotion

Where will you get your marketing messages in front of your prospective customers?

Search engines? Search ads? Social networks? Online banner advertisements? Press? TV? Direct mail? Billboards? Do you use ads or top-of-the-funnel strategies like content marketing? Do you try to sell, or do you use lead generation and nurturing strategies?

Is time of day a factor? Is there any seasonality in your marketplace? Are there other external factors that can be leveraged to improve your marketing?

What do your competitors do here? Are some channels highly competitive? Where are the opportunities? A SWOT analysis can be useful here (another traditional marketing tool).

This really depends on the customer, and often the best approaches strategically integrate marketing channels to maximize results.

In our business, we find that higher-funnel activities like content marketing work best for us in contrast to ads. As an example, we have a piece of content that details 30 small business SEO tips. This generates some good exposure and leads for us. Whereas, if we run search ads, we will get leads, but we are often in competition with other agencies. It also tends to come down to price, and while we are not expensive, there is always someone cheaper.

You have to figure out how your marketing, lead generation and sales work together to fine-tune your approach. If you can find some way to provide comparable quality while being measurably the cheapest service, you can likely be aggressive in all channels.

Putting the P(ieces) together

So, there are a lot of moving parts here. You can tackle product, price, place and promotion in any order. And in all honesty, I tend to merge place and promotion when we do this for ourselves and our clients. Product informs price. Price points inform the product. No point adding some radical new features if they push the price up too high.

You must consider the marketplace you operate in and your competition. Scalable marketing success will very much depend upon getting all of these factors aligned. If you measure the success of your SEO by how many conversions you generate from organic traffic, then you can improve your SEO by tweaking your product pricing.

The point I am trying to make here is that great SEO does not exist in a bubble. It is part of a broader marketing framework. As marketers and SEOs, we have to consider these other factors to ensure we can keep on improving the work that we do.

If you have a product that is not selling, try considering each of these factors. Is it the product itself? Is it the pricing? Or is your promotion just not up to scratch? Use the simple 4 Ps framework to interrogate your marketing, and your results will only improve.

I certainly hope this helps, and I’m always happy to answer any questions via the author contact form — or you can reach me on Twitter or LinkedIn, where I am happy to connect with other marketers.

 

Source: The 4 Ps of SEO & digital marketing

10- Jul2017
Posted By: DPadmin
166 Views

6 Digital Marketing Strategies You Need To Adopt In 2017 

 

Doing business today means finding a way to market your company by harnessing the power of the internet. Still today there are companies that forgo the use of the internet thinking it is too complicated or that they will be fine without it. This kind of thinking is troubling since implementing a digital marketing strategy can do untold wonders for your business. Conversely, many companies adopt digital marketing practices without formulating a guiding strategy. Attempting to market your company or its products online without an overarching digital marketing strategy can be almost as unproductive and frustrating as having no digital marketing presence at all. The choice to implement a digital marketing strategy, therefore, is an easy one. However, since the efficacy of various marketing strategies evolve over time, it is wise to keep the marketing strategy fresh. Here are a few digital marketing strategies you should consider for 2017.

Video is Still King – People on the internet love watching videos. For this reason there is no better way to embark on a marketing campaign than to employ the use of video. With video streaming sites such as YouTube and with social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter relying heavily on video ads, launching an ad campaign based on video ads seems to be a safe bet. According to Eddie Madan, CEO of Edkent Media, video engagement rates are higher than engagement with other types of media because, as he puts it, who doesn’t love being entertained? Video ads allow users to drop their guard and willingly view a commercial. If the video is animated, the chance that they will view the ad is even higher. Video allows users to watch and listen to the ad without having to devote a large portion of their concentration to reading copy. One important note to remember is that a video ad must be fun, entertaining and visually captivating in order to attract viewers.

Interactive Emails – There is something gratifying about being able to interact with emails right in your inbox without having to open another page. With the aid of integrated HTML and CSS this is quickly becoming a much-used tool in digital marketing. Interactive emails allow customers to add items to their carts, choose between colors and styles and even play games right in the inbox. Customers will appreciate this added functionality and it may convince them to interact with the email even more. Keep in mind that even when emails are opened, they are unlikely to be clicked on. Sending out an interactive email can change your click through rate dramatically. Customers will see that your emails aren’t similar to the run-of-the-mill variety they’ve become accustomed to and will sense that your company is a step ahead of the rest.

Social Video Will Explode in Popularity – The importance of video on social media will magnify in importance in 2017. With so many users relying on social media for video entertainment, the importance of using these platforms to launch marketing campaigns will become even more important. Video uploads on just Facebook alone have grown by 75% over the last year. And with over a billion views every day, marketing managers are taking new interest in Facebook. In addition to this, with Facebook’s insistence on autoplay videos, video views are almost guaranteed. Even though Facebook allows the customer to turn off video autoplay, they are either unwilling or unable to do it. Additionally, Facebook’s introduction of live video has created another tool for marketers as it tests users’ willingness to take part in a live-streaming experience.

Mobile is Making Bigger Inroads – The days of catering primarily for desktop computer users seems to be coming to a close with the increasing use of mobile devices as a way of connecting to the internet. 2016 saw mobile traffic increasing massively and the same upward trend is expected in 2017 as well. The upsurge in mobile use means that marketing managers need to make a concerted effort to cater to users on mobile as well as desktop. Marketing managers need to ensure that all visitors will have the best experience possible when visiting the website. In addition to this, Google is beginning to demote sites that do not have adequate mobile optimization – an even greater reason why catering for mobile is so important.

Linking of Machine Learning and Marketing Automation – What good is it to have data but then fail to use it in an effective manner? The injection of machine learning into digital marketing seeks to solve this problem. Machine learning tools allow the marketing manager greater insights into the customers habits and needs. This allows companies to strategize without having to waste time wondering which tactic to employ. Since algorithm will control this messaging, marketing managers no longer have to spend time selecting message, frequency and target demographic. In 2017, look to how marketing takes on a new life with Google Home, and Amazon’s Alexa as conversation with machine learning gadgets is leveraged for marketing strategy.

Countdown Timer in Emails – Countdown timers aren’t at all a new tool used by marketers. However, marketing managers are finding new utility with the tool as they slip them into marketing emails. Countdown timers help convince would-be customers that the proverbial window is closing and that they must take action now. These tools have the added benefit of being a visual aid that the potential customer can recognize and understand in one glance. Additionally, since Gmail displays HTML by default, countdown timers are always shown in emails.

Crafting a digital marketing strategy is a matter of keeping one’s ear to the ground and staying abreast of the fresh trends that can attract new eyes. However, it is good to remember that there is no hard and fast rule when it comes to adopting digital marketing practices. Much depends on your customers, your business and what works for you. Knowing these three factors inside out will help you to make better decisions about which tactics you should employ. If tried and true strategies work for you, then there is little reason to change.

Source: 6 Digital Marketing Strategies You Need To Adopt In 2017 | HuffPost

10- Jul2017
Posted By: DPadmin
217 Views

How To Determine The Right PPC Advertising Budget

One of the top questions I hear from clients and prospects is, “How much should our budget be for pay-per-click advertising?”

The answer to identifying the appropriate PPC advertising budget depends on projections, assumptions and math. In this article, I’ll dive into a few of the formulas we use to help companies determine how much to spend on online advertising.

Lead Generation Formula

The core purpose of running paid ads is to achieve a business objective. We use a lead generation equation to help us reach that objective. The equations are simple:

(Revenue / Sales Period) / Average Sale = Number of Customers

Number of Customers / Conversion Rate = Number of Leads

Number of Leads / Conversion Rate on Traffic = Amount of Traffic

Let’s fill in these equations with some real numbers. Let’s say there is a revenue goal of $1 million. There are 12 sales periods per year (recurring monthly revenue) and the average sale per customer is $1,000.

($1 million / 12) / $1,000 = 83.33 customers

To get to $1 million in revenue, you’ll need about 84 customers. Now, let’s assume your sales team closes one out of every five leads, or 20%.

83.33 customers / 20% = 416.66 leads

Assuming a 20% close rate, you’ll need about 417 leads per year. Let’s assume 5% of your paid advertising traffic actually fills out a contact form to qualify as a lead.

416.66 leads / 5% conversion rate = 8,333.33 visits

With a 5% contact form conversion rate, you’ll need about 8,334 website visits to generate 417 leads, which will translate into 84 customers, which will equate to $1 million in revenue.

Of course, that’s if the numbers work out, which leads us to the next step in determining an advertising budget.

Existing Marketing Strategy

Paid advertising is only necessary if other marketing tactics fall short of achieving your revenue objective. Essentially, paid ads can help make up for the shortcomings of search engine optimization, email marketing, social media marketing and other forms of marketing meant to drive leads for your business.

Which marketing assets are currently driving results?

Taking into account how SEO, email, social and other marketing tactics are performing provides a more holistic marketing strategy. For example, if the strategies for SEO, email and social get you to 75% of your revenue objectives, then you’ll know paid advertising needs to account for the remaining 25%. Instead of driving $1 million in revenue, paid advertising can focus on driving $250,000 of revenue.

Competitor Analysis

What are your competitors spending on paid ads? What are their targeted keywords?

You can spy on your competitor’s paid advertising activity by using a service like SpyFu or SEMRush. Simply plug in your competitor’s website URL and these services will estimate their Google AdWords activity – including their estimated monthly spend, targeted keywords and ads.

The key here is to analyze at least five competitors to get a good baseline for the average spend in your industry. Make a list of three known competitors. Then, include two competitors who are bidding on your target keyword.

Let’s say competitor one is spending $3,000 per month, competitor two is spending $4,500, competitor three spends $0, competitor four spends $10,000, and competitor five spends $2,000.

Typically we’ll throw out the high and low to average out the remaining three competitors and get a ballpark estimate of what a company should roughly spend on Google AdWords to be competitive in their respective industry. In the example above, averaging out competitor spend estimates a monthly budget of $3,166 would be enough to be competitive.

But would it really, given your business objectives of $1 million in revenue? Let’s do some keyword research to see if search volumes will achieve your revenue results.

Source: How To Determine The Right PPC Advertising Budget

10- Jul2017
Posted By: DPadmin
159 Views

This script automates adding any AdWords data to a Google spreadsheet

If you’ve ever been frustrated at the amount of time you spend creating PPC reports, you’re not alone. Today, I’ll do my best to help you with a new AdWords script I just finished.

The severity of the reporting problem became very clear to me at a conference I recently attended. Attendees were asked to leave sticky notes describing the most timing-consuming aspects of their jobs. I know it’s not exactly a scientific study, but I found the results fascinating anyway. Here’s what the board looked like:

The orange arrows highlight each note that said “reporting” was the most time-consuming PPC task.

Meetings are another time-consuming task people added to the board several times — but I’m not going to help you fix that with a script, so let me focus on reporting, a topic I’ve covered several times in recent posts here.

When it comes to reporting, you should really try to produce something that gives the stakeholder the data and insights they need, but in such a way that you can easily repeat, and hopefully even automate it. There are plenty of tools that can help with that.

And while automating reports is a reasonable goal, the reality is that there will always be cases where the client wants just one extra piece of data. And because of Murphy’s Law, this will always the one thing your reporting tool doesn’t cover.

Why don’t reporting tools cover everything? By my last count, AdWords has 46 different types of reports available through their API, ranging from common ones like an account performance report to the more obscure, like the keywordless category report:

Reports available through the AdWords API. Screen shot from the Google Developers Site

In all likelihood, the vast majority of people care about just 10 percent of these reports, so engineering resources get assigned to supporting the most commonly requested reports. And even if a tool covers all 46 possible report types, it might not filter the data the way the client wants, or include some of the lesser used metrics, attributes or segments.

So, how do we get custom data from AdWords into virtually any reporting engine? Through a data connector. And one of the most popular places for marketers to store data is in a spreadsheet.

Google Sheets, just like AdWords, can be automated with App Scripts from Google. This means we can write some code to make the spreadsheet connect with a data source of our choosing. Combined with AdWords scripts, which have permission to access your AdWords data, we can create an automation that lets you specify a template for a report, and then automatically add the requested data on a predetermined schedule.

So, here we go! Let’s get you a free tool to put any AdWords data you want into a Google Spreadsheet.

Step 1: Set up the report template in Google Sheets

Copy this spreadsheet into your own Google Drive. This sheet will look very boring when you first load it, but there are about 600 lines of code in the “Script Editor” section where all the magic happens. This will also be moved to your Google Drive when you copy the script into your own account.

Notice that when the spreadsheet finishes loading, you’ll have a custom menu called “AdWords Data Grabber from Optmyzr.”

Select the type of report you’d like to run from this custom menu:

When you select a report type, the spreadsheet connects with AdWords to get the appropriate attributes, metrics and segments for the selected report. It automatically sets up drop-downs in the spreadsheet to let you choose which elements to include in the report and what filters to apply.

Go to the “Settings” tab and choose a date range for your report from the drop-down. Since the goal is to set this report on an automated schedule, the only options are relative date ranges.

Next, select any filters you want to apply to the data. A pretty common one would be to filter for items that have more than 0 impressions. This step is optional.

For things where AdWords expects you to choose from a set list of values, the spreadsheet will present you with a drop-down of valid choices, for example, for campaign status, you could choose “ENABLED.”

Now, go to the “Report” tab and select the data you want to include in each column. Once again, the spreadsheet will already be loaded with the available options for the report type you have selected.

Step 2: Install the AdWords script

Now to automate the data pulls, simply install the following AdWords script code into your account and set it on a reasonable schedule, like weekly or monthly.

/*
// AdWords Script: Put Data From AdWords Report In Google Sheets
// ————————————————————–
// Copyright 2017 Optmyzr Inc., All Rights Reserved
//
// This script takes a Google spreadsheet as input. Based on the column headers, data filters, and date range specified
// on this sheet, it will generate different reports.
//
// The goal is to let users create custom automatic reports with AdWords data that they can then include in an automated reporting
// tool like the one offered by Optmyzr.
//
//
// For more PPC management tools, visit www.optmyzr.com
//
*/
var DEBUG = 0; // set to 1 to get more details about what the script does while it runs; default = 0
var REPORT_SHEET_NAME = report; // the name of the tab where the report data should go
var SETTINGS_SHEET_NAME = settings; // the name of the tab where the filters and date range are specified
var SPREADSHEET_URL = https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1dttJTb547L81XYKdTQ56LcfO9hHhbb9wm06ZY5mKhEo/edit#gid=0; // The URL to the Google spreadsheet with your report template
var EMAIL_ADDRESSES = example@example.com; // Get notified by email at this address when a new report is ready
function main() {
var currentSetting = new Object();
currentSetting.ss = SPREADSHEET_URL;
// Read Settings Sheet
var settingsSheet = SpreadsheetApp.openByUrl(currentSetting.ss).getSheetByName(SETTINGS_SHEET_NAME);
var rows = settingsSheet.getDataRange();
var numRows = rows.getNumRows();
var numCols = rows.getNumColumns();
var values = rows.getValues();
var numSettingsRows = numRows 1;
var sortString = ;
var filters = new Array();
for(var i = 0; i < numRows; i++) {
var row = values[i];
var settingName = row[0];
var settingOperator = row[1];
var settingValue = row[2];
var dataType = row[3];
debug(settingName + + settingOperator + + settingValue);
if(settingName.toLowerCase().indexOf(report type) != 1) {
var reportType = settingValue;
} else if(settingName.toLowerCase().indexOf(date range) != 1) {
var dateRange = settingValue;
} else if(settingName.toLowerCase().indexOf(sort order) != 1) {
var sortDirection = dataType || DESC;
if(settingValue) var sortString = ORDER BY + settingValue + + sortDirection;
var sortColumnIndex = 1;
}else {
if(settingOperator && settingValue) {
if(dataType.toLowerCase().indexOf(long) != 1 || dataType.toLowerCase().indexOf(double) != 1 || dataType.toLowerCase().indexOf(money) != 1 || dataType.toLowerCase().indexOf(integer) != 1) {
var filter = settingName + + settingOperator + + settingValue;
} else {
if(settingValue.indexOf() != 1) {
var filter = settingName + + settingOperator + + settingValue + ;
} else if(settingValue.indexOf() != 1) {
var filter = settingName + + settingOperator + + settingValue + ;
} else {
var filter = settingName + + settingOperator + + settingValue + ;
}
}
debug(filter: + filter)
filters.push(filter);
}
}
}
// Process the report sheet and fill in the data
var reportSheet = SpreadsheetApp.openByUrl(currentSetting.ss).getSheetByName(REPORT_SHEET_NAME);
var rows = reportSheet.getDataRange();
var numRows = rows.getNumRows();
var numCols = rows.getNumColumns();
var values = rows.getValues();
var numSettingsRows = numRows 1;
// Read Header Row and match names to settings
var headerNames = new Array();
var row = values[0];
for(var i = 0; i < numCols; i++) {
var value = row[i];
headerNames.push(value);
//debug(value);
}
if(reportType.toLowerCase().indexOf(performance) != 1) {
var dateString = DURING + dateRange;
} else {
var dateString = ;
}
if(filters.length) {
var query = SELECT + headerNames.join(,) + FROM + reportType + WHERE + filters.join( AND ) + dateString + + sortString;
} else {
var query = SELECT + headerNames.join(,) + FROM + reportType + dateString + + sortString;
}
debug(query);
var report = AdWordsApp.report(query);
try {
report.exportToSheet(reportSheet);
var subject = Your + reportType + for + dateRange + for + AdWordsApp.currentAccount().getName() + is ready;
var body = currentSetting.ss<br>You can now add this data to <a href=’https://www.optmyzr.com’>Optmyzr</a> or another reporting system.;
MailApp.sendEmail(EMAIL_ADDRESSES, subject, body);
Logger.log(Your report is ready at + currentSetting.ss);
Logger.log(You can include this in your scheduled Optmyzr reports or another reporting tool.);
} catch (e) {
debug(error: + e);
}
}
function debug(text) {
if(DEBUG) Logger.log(text);
}

In this code, edit lines 17 through 22 with your preferences. The most critical field to update is the one with the URL of the Google spreadsheet we created and modified above.

Now you can preview the script; if your settings are fine, you should see a success message similar to this one:

Your spreadsheet should then contain the requested data and could look something like this:

Note: There are many metrics that cannot be combined in reports, for example, conversion type name cannot be reported at the same type as clicks in the campaign report. Checking for this before attempting to populate the report is tricky, so the script will return an error about your error.

When this happens, simply update the headers in the “Report” tab of the spreadsheet and run the script again until all errors are cleared.

Including the data in a report

You can use the data as-is in Google Sheets, but you can also include it in automatic scheduled reports. In Optmyzr, you would add a reporting widget that points to the URL of the spreadsheet. The tool then pulls in that data and includes it in the report, using the same styling as the native Optmyzr widgets. Your client won’t be able to tell the difference, and you’ll look like a hero for delivering the custom data they want on an automatic schedule.

Conclusion

PPC reporting takes a ton of time. And because clients invariably have some custom requests for their reports, reporting tools often need some custom integrations to deliver the goods. This AdWords script, together with the Google Apps Script in the spreadsheet, lets you bring custom data from AdWords directly into most reporting engines where you can now automate one more thing.

I hope this script helps you get back a little bit of time to do other things. And if you’re anything like the people who left the sticky notes on the board, I hope you’ll enjoy that next meeting!

Source: This script automates adding any AdWords data to a Google spreadsheet

24- Feb2016
Posted By: Guardian Owl
277 Views

Google To Shut Down Google Compare Products In US And UK On March 23

The vertical lead generation programs for credit cards, auto insurance, mortgages and travel insurance will start winding down Tuesday, February 23.Google’s lead generation product known as Google Compare, will start sunsetting this week.Google’s lead generation product known as Google Compare, will start sunsetting this week.

In an email sent to partners and acquired by Search Engine Land, the Google Compare Team told Compare partners on Monday night that the product will start to wind down on Tuesday, February 23, 2016. Google Compare will shut down completely in both the US and UK — the two markets where Compare is offered — one month later on March 23.

The email to Compare partners:

From: Google Compare Team
Subject: An Update on Google Compare

Dear Partner,

Beginning on February 23, 2016, we will start ramping down the Google Compare product, which is currently live in both the US and UK. We plan to terminate the service as of March 23, 2016. As you know, Google Compare (formerly Google Advisor in the U.S.) has been a specialized, standalone service that enables consumers to get quotes from a number of providers for financial products such as car and travel insurance, credit cards and mortgages.

Despite people turning to Google for financial services information, the Google Compare service itself hasn’t driven the success we hoped for. We greatly appreciate your partnership and understand that this decision will be disappointing to some. But after a lot of careful consideration, we’ve decided that focusing more intently on AdWords and future innovations will enable us to provide fresh, comprehensive answers to Google users, and to provide our financial services partners with the best return on investment.

We’re grateful for all the feedback that you have provided over the course of this product’s development, and we are looking forward to partnering with you to achieve greater success in the future.

We will work with you during this transition and beyond. Please reach out to your Google representative if you have any questions and to discuss the next steps.

The Google Compare Team

Google has confirmed the email’s authenticity.

The company only recently began rebuilding the Compare product from the ashes of the Advisor program in the US. The single piece left standing from that initial effort was the credit card offering — savings accounts, CDs and mortgages had all discontinued. Compare for Auto Insurance launched just last March, starting in California. Then Google relaunched Compare for Mortgage quotes in November with Zillow and Lending Tree among the launch partners. Both of those relaunches had limited roll outs. In the UK, Google Compare has been running since 2012 for car insurance, mortgage rates, credit cards and travel insurance.

A Google spokesperson told Search Engine Land that while searches on these queries remained high, the product didn’t get the traction it hoped for and revenue was minimal. That’s in part due to the limited availability of the products in both the US and the UK.

In the UK, the Compare product also came under scrutiny in 2014 by the Financial Conduct Authority, the UK financial services industry regulator, when comparison sites complained Google was competing unfairly by placing its own product at the top of the search results. However, any legal concerns did not play a role in the decision to close Compare, we’re told.

What’s next? Google says the focus will primarily be on AdWords and transitioning partners to standard ad products. However, it may still focus on the space and look at new product avenues.

While the move will come as a surprise to many outside the company, apparently internally this decision to terminate Compare is not coming as a shock. The Google spokesperson said the company will help Googlers currently working on Compare find new roles within the company.

Source: Google To Shut Down Google Compare Products In US And UK On March 23

19- Feb2016
Posted By: Guardian Owl
381 Views

Mark Cuban’s Big Idea to End the Apple Encryption Battle

The FBI is pressuring Apple to help the agency bypass the iPhone’s security features to unlock the San Bernardino terrorist’s smartphone. Here’s Mark Cuban’s thoughts on the matter.

Mark Cuban, entrepreneur and owner of the basketball team the Dallas Mavericks, says Apple is doing the right thing by refusing to build special software to help the FBIunlock an iPhone belonging to one of the terrorists who carried out the mass shooting in San Bernardino in 2015.

Using a 227-year-old law, the FBI is demanding that Apple write a new version of its iPhone operating system to help the agency bypass the encryption security features in the iPhone belonging to Syed Rizwan Farook, who along with his wife Tashfeen Malik shot and killed 14 people at a holiday party at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino on Dec. 2. But Apple has refused to build the backdoor, explaining in a letter released to the public this week that the new iOS program could have disastrous effects on the privacy of every iPhone user.

In a blog post, Cuban writes that if Apple complies with the FBI’s demands it could start rolling down a “slippery slope of lost privacy.” The FBI says it just wants a one-off program to decrypt the locked iPhone, but Apple says once the ability to decrypt an iPhone is created it could be used to unlock any iPhone user’s phone–effectively opening a Pandora’s box that could never be closed.

Cuban says the potential for abuse could threaten the privacy millions of people.

“Every tool that protects our privacy and liberties against oppression, tyranny, madmen and worse can often be used to take those very precious rights from us. But like we protect our 2nd Amendment Right [sic], we must not let some of the negatives stand in the way of all the positives. We must stand up for our rights to free speech and liberty,” Cuban writes.

The major sticking point is that no law exists that would compel a company to write software to crack its own encrypted software, so the FBI is using the All Writs Act of 1789, which George Washington signed during the creation of the federal court system. The Act is a vague catch-all that empowers courts to issue orders even though a law doesn’t exist yet.

Apple is framing the FBI’s use of the law as a dangerous precedent, reminiscent of the NSA’s mass surveillance program revealed by Edward Snowden.

“If the government can use the All Writs Act to make it easier to unlock your iPhone, it would have the power to reach into anyone’s device to capture their data,” Tim Cook wrote in a customer letter. “The government could extend this breach of privacy and demand that Apple build surveillance software to intercept your messages, access your health records or financial data, track your location, or even access your phone’s microphone or camera without your knowledge.”

But Cuban has an answer. Cuban admits he is not one to propose more laws, but he says the All Writs Act is dangerously vague and could lead to the wholesale loss of our nation’s privacy. His answer is to create a new law specifically tailored to this unique situation, which was created by the fact that technology moves faster than law. Check out Cuban’s proposed law below:

“A company can only be compelled to remove any type of security or encryption from a smartphone or tablet, and only a smartphone or tablet, under the following circumstances:

1. There has been an event, with casualties, that has beendeclared an Act of Terrorism
2. There is reason to believe that the smartphone was possessed by a participant in the Act of Terrorism.
3. The smartphone must have been on premise during the event.
4. The terrorist who was in possession of the smartphone or tablet must be deceased.”

Source: Mark Cuban’s Big Idea to End the Apple Encryption Battle | Inc.com