Tag: Online advertising

Internet Marketing

How To Write Email Marketing Copy That Converts Like Crazy

Are you ashamed of your email marketing campaigns?
There’s nothing worse than seeing a digital campaign become stagnant. While it’s easy to set up a sales funnel, or create a newsletter, and start building your list of subscribers. That’s not a success.
Success is turning these curious prospects into engaged customers. And if you’re not cultivating lasting relationships with your email subscribers, you’re failing.
Knowing how to effectively persuade and influence your email subscribers in a way that makes them take the next step in their customer journey is vital.
One of the most common ways to monitor the success of an email marketing campaign is through the conversion rate. This is the percentage of your email recipients who open the email, click through to your website, and complete a set desired

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Internet Marketing

5 Beginner Tips For Dominating Google Ads

With over 3.5 billion searches on Google every single day, the chances are that your ideal customer is already searching for you.
All you need to do is pop up in their search results.
Google Ads is one of the most effective ways to do this in the short run. Many businesses have leveraged Google Ads to kickstart their growth.
In this article, you will find out:

How Google Ads works.
5 of the most important tips for using Google Ads.
How to stop Google Ads and if that should matter when deciding your marketing strategy.

Let’s dive in…
How does Google Ads work?
To begin with, you need to understand how Google Ads (previously known as Google Adwords) really works.
Every time someone types a search query into Google, they see a list of search results. And

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Internet Marketing

Does real-time marketing need to take an alternative route?

My role at Waze has seen me speak to hundreds of brands and agencies about how to reach drivers when they’re on the move. Increasingly, questions have centred around data and how targeted advertisers can be in reaching drivers.
As the sheer number of ads we experience on many of the services we use every day has increased – often at the detriment of the user experience – the mobile advertising industry has also had to consider the ethical implications of using consumers’ data. A combination of GDPR, the increased use of ad-blockers and better public awareness has meant that context  – versus audience targeting based on personal information about the user – has become much more fashionable again.
If you’ve downloaded a weather app or a flashlight app, for

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Internet Marketing

7 Psychological Techniques to Increase Your Web Page Dwell Time (With Examples from Experts)

A high click-through rate (CTR) may help you get higher rankings on the search results pages. But a high dwell time will help you keep those rankings.
When a search engine user visits your page and spends a lot of time going through your content, search engines see your page as providing value.
And in most cases, this is true.
As Duane Forrester said when he first used the term “dwell time” on Bing’s blog:
“If your content does not encourage them to remain with you, they will leave. The search engines can get a sense of this by watching the dwell time.”
He then continued:
“And while that’s not the only factor we review when helping to determine quality, it’s a signal we watch.”
Now, the big question is: how do you present accurate

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Internet Marketing

How Video Content Can Help You Boost Your Google Rankings

Google’s search algorithms are inclined to deliver a good user experience. That’s why you need to create content that is authentic, relevant, and valuable to your target audience.
A majority of SEO professionals create and optimize various types of content such as blog posts, infographics, and images to increase their brands’ search visibility. However, one type of content that is quite underutilized in the world of SEO is video content.
Though 87% of brands now use video content as a marketing tool, not many focus on deriving its SEO benefits.
If used effectively, videos can significantly contribute to your overall SEO strategy, in a couple of ways. Let’s see how video content can help you boost your SERP rankings.
Drive more traffic to your website
Consumers enjoy video content. U.S. adults aged 18

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Internet Marketing

Reappraising ‘matching luggage’: How creative consistency could supercharge your campaign

“Short-termism” is currently a growing concern in the digital advertising business. While explicit measurement was the promise of digital advertising a decade ago, that same capability has driven a focus on short-term ad impact metrics, i.e, efficiency over effectiveness. 
Measuring campaign effectiveness is an essential part of digital advertising; but it’s also one of the most challenging. Not only this, but with more and more questions being raised about the true value of current methods such as click-through rates, it could be time to consider setting a new industry standard.
Finding an alternative
So, what could this new standard look like?
Over the past decade Inskin has found that attention – defined as visual engagement – is the most potent measure of ad effectiveness. Working with eye-tracking specialists Lumen Research, we have

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Internet Marketing

8 Underutilized Digital Marketing Tactics Which Are Trending In 2019

If you want to be successful, you’ve got to think out of the box.
Take a close look at some of the biggest brands around the world. What’s making them successful?
They’re ahead of the game for a reason. First of all, you’ll notice that they have a plan to reinvent their digital marketing tactics.
They have the power to embrace change and realize what needs to be done to make the transition from being merely ordinary to extraordinary. And since the digital world is continuously changing, they understand that it’s no longer enough to use the same tactics year in and year out.
If you want to attempt to challenge the competition this year, you need to take a holistic approach. Capitalize on key marketing trends that include SEO, Social Media,

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Internet Marketing

The Pros and Cons of Online Advertising at Scale

Online advertising is an essential tool in your marketing arsenal.
Not doing it yet? Then you must be thinking whether you should do it or not, because brands of all sizes, even places like KFC and McDonalds, are advertising online.
While online advertising is extremely beneficial for any business, there are some disadvantages that you should consider. To decide whether or not you will invest in this approach, you should look at the complete picture. Here are some pros and cons of online advertising.
What’s so great about online advertising?
To answer this question simply – many things.
Have you noticed that most people have migrated to the online world? They shop online, they watch movies and shows online, they learn online and they read online.
A smart business sees this as an instant

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Internet Marketing

How to Increase Page Speed on Image-Heavy Websites

Images are the essence of contemporary websites; without them, it is difficult to establish a long-lasting impression on your visitor.
Images help businesses engage their visitors and minimize bounce rates; however, they can also be the cause behind weak web performance. Search engine crawlers like Google and Bing detest image-heavy and slow loading websites. Heavy images drastically cause page loading times to increase.
How do websites display stellar quality images while reducing their sizes and still not suffer a loss in quality? Below are actionable steps that website owners, SEO experts, bloggers, and online eCommerce shops can utilize to increase page speed.
Post summary:

Benefits of optimizing images
How to optimize images for faster page loading speeds
What are SVGs and why you should consider using them?
Other best practices for image-heavy websites
How can I

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Internet Marketing

Why marketers need to engage rather than enrage to solve the mobile advertising divide

Keeping a lid on problems doesn’t solve them — as the publishers still losing almost £1 million to ad blocking can confirm. Over the years, the ad block fight has slipped from the number one spot of industry problems; with declining general levels of blocked impressions and increasing advertising investment creating a perception the issue is under control. But that isn’t necessarily true.
Mobile is not only set to be a key driver of 2019’s £14.7 billion digital ad spend total; it’s also experiencing greater levels of ad blocking. Studies have shown a creeping increase in usage, with blockers detected during 8% of UK mobile sessions, and 32% of global mobile users blocking ads, only just behind PCs and laptops (37%).
While it may be moving at a relatively slow

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Internet Marketing

A guide to campaign tracking for simple and stress-free analytics

Any business that wants to be successful needs to know which marketing techniques are effective to their customers, members and target audience. Without this knowledge, it’s impossible to know whether your marketing campaigns are effective or if they are simply wasting your time and money.
Which means that campaign tracking is a fundamental part of digital marketing reporting, and if you’re not doing it, or doing it incorrectly, then you may end up using your budgets for activity that doesn’t give you a return on your investment.
At Filter Digital, we spend a lot of time working with marketing teams and educating them on the correct way to setup campaigns so that they can track spend, conversion and return.
We help them to understand by tracking a campaign, you can “follow

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Internet Marketing

Six killer marketing metrics that really matter: Segmentation and engagement

The life of a digital marketer is rarely straightforward. Whilst other communicators may perhaps argue it’s easier for their digital peers to evidence ROI, those within the world of email marketing, for instance, may be quick to defend their position. Because yes, they have a wealth of metrics at their fingertips, but it can be difficult to know where to start. Death by data anyone?
Focusing only on open and click rates?
In his book How to Win Friends and Influence People, Dale Carnegie said: “You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in people, than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.” And this quote tells marketers a lot too.
Rather than focusing on what is arguably a vanity metric like

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Internet Marketing

Programmatic ad viewability outperforming direct ads for first time, says report

A new study from Integral Ad Science (IAS) has noted a potential sea-change in terms of digital advertising, with programmatic desktop display ads in the UK outperforming publisher direct ads for the first time.
The Media Quality Report, which offers UK benchmarks for viewability, brand safety and ad fraud across digital environments and channels, noted that during the second half of 2018 almost seven in 10 (69.1%) programmatic UK desktop display ads met minimum viewability standards. Publisher direct ads, in contrast, were at just over two thirds (67.7%).
Viewability was determined as 50% of the ad unit in view for one continuous second for display and mobile advertising, 30% for one continuous second on large display ad formats, and 50% for two seconds for video ads, per the Media Ratings

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Internet Marketing

How to increase demand generation through your website: Optimise throughout the customer journey

In an age of digital marketing with social media, marketing automation, email marketing and CRM, marketers often forget that their website remains the most important of their digital assets.
Research by SiriusDecisions shows that both sales and marketing underestimate the importance of the website as a communication channel at key stages of the sales cycle. The research shows that marketers and sales tend to think of their websites as ‘showcase’ pages at the early stage of selling and they focus on other channels such as email and events as key channels during the later stages. The real disconnect highlighted by the study is that customers still value company websites as a critical touchpoint throughout the buying journey — all the way to closed or won.
They key takeaway? Don’t underestimate

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Internet Marketing

The seven deadly vids: Video content to amplify and generate leads on social media

Today’s marketing departments are creating more videos than ever before – and with good reason as such content attracts more organic traffic from search engines, keeping prospects on websites for longer.
The figures speak volumes too as nearly 60% of executives said they would choose video over text content if shown both, and 77% rated video would as an effective content marketing tactic.
It’s therefore important to have video as part of a content marketing strategy when looking at ways to not only drive lead generation but offer something visual and engaging to really tell a story.
With that said, there are so many types of video to choose from when pulling together compelling content for a buying audience – from ‘pieces to camera’ to behind-the-scenes shots to help prospects and existing customers get a feel

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Internet Marketing

Users ‘readily recognise’ importance of advertising – but don’t disable adblockers by default

Consumer expectations remain higher than ever when it comes to advertising – or rather, the lack of it. As a result, publishers have had to resort to stronger tactics.
We notice you’re using an ad blocker, the website says, with varying degrees of politeness. We also know everyone hates ads, it continues, but unfortunately our employees do need to feed and clothe their children so we were wondering if you’d be so kind as to disable your ad blocker just for us?
According to a new survey, however, if publishers do that then three quarters of their site’s visitors will never darken their doors again.
The survey from eyeo – creators of Adblock Plus, so naturally a little vested interest – polled 2,000 British online users. Of that number, almost 44%

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Internet Marketing

Why advertising spend will shift as brands track sales, not clicks

Marketing budgets are on the up. According to the latest IPA Bellwether Report, a net balance of 8.7% of marketers said their budgets had increased in the first three months of this year; marking a huge improvement on the previous quarter’s 0%. And digital was one of the top areas to see a boost in investment.
Of course, this is great news for the advertising industry. But, with increasingly big budgets being pumped into digital advertising, brands need to understand the impact it’s having on their business. Otherwise, how can they justify asking for even bigger budgets for future activity?
Out with the old and in with the new
For a long time, impressions and click through rates have been used as an indication of campaign success. But times

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Internet Marketing

Is app apathy hurting your marketing strategy?

Are you reaching your audience directly through mobile apps? If not, there is a whole new digital market that remains, literally, untapped.
Content consumption is nearly universal on mobile devices in 2019, especially on apps. From Instacart to Waze, apps capture the attention of billions on a daily basis.Three of every four users not only say their phone is useless with apps, but default to using apps when they’re bored. Access to these app users is easily unlocked for mobile marketers, who have access to targeting capabilities that other advertising forms do not. The prevalence of in-app marketing is currently the biggest shift in the digital marketing industry especially in the rapidly growing Asian marketplace, and any brand or company not taking advantage could fall behind fast.
In an era of short attention spans, in-app advertising can attract consumers’

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Internet Marketing

How to Craft the Perfect Email

How to Craft the Perfect Email written by John Jantsch read more at Duct Tape Marketing
Some small business owners are intimidated by email marketing. Having to write an individual email is scary enough if you don’t consider yourself a writer. The thought of sending an email out to an entire mailing list can be downright terrifying!
Fortunately, the perfect email is about more than just writing. And even for the written elements, once you’ve figured out the essential components, it’s easy for even those more timid writers among us to excel.
Here are the steps that go into crafting the perfect email.
Start with a Strong Subject Line
According to Campaign Manager, the average office worker receives 121 emails per day. That’s a lot of activity in just one inbox, and it

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Internet Marketing

To Google, or not to Google: Why collaboration is vital for the future digital ecosystem

Opinion In a double clampdown, Google has capped the campaign data available to advertisers and the inventory they can buy — thereby severely restricting their flexibility to deliver successful campaigns to consumers.
Its decision to block use of the DoubleClick ID when transferring data between services has left advertisers in the dark — unable to connect the dots between campaign insights held in DoubleClick Bid Manager (DBM), Campaign Manager (DCM) or the Google Exchange, with behavioural data from other ad tech providers such as Adobe Analytics. Without this data, understanding which audiences to buy so that messages reach the most economically productive users has become a guessing game.   
And the limitations on buying make matters worse. Advertisers using independent tools in any capacity, such as to test for ad

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Internet Marketing

Why Good Content Isn’t Enough: Lessons From The Latest Content Marketing Studies

Why Good Content Isn’t Enough: Lessons From The Latest Content Marketing Studies

It used to be that as long as you wrote long-form, valuable content on a regular basis, you could do well at content marketing .

Unfortunately good content isn’t enough anymore.

The SERPs are getting more competitive, and the marketplace is turning into a winner-take-all battle to the death.

Here’s what the latest content marketing studies can teach us about ‘good’ content and why it’s no longer going to get you the results you want.

1. The battleground is overflowing

On average, four million blog posts are published daily. With so much competition, it’s becoming nearly impossible for your content to be seen.

There are millions to billions of search results for even the most absurd keywords on Google:

The battleground is overflowing for content marketing studies

“Good” content isn’t enough to make your post the one-in-a-million (or billion) articles that earn a coveted spot on the first page in SERPs. After all, only the top ten make it onto page one. At most.

Back in 2015, Moz reported a significant spike in the number of SERPs showing fewer than ten results .

SERPs showing fewer than ten results for content marketing studies

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And this trend hasn’t reversed.

But wait: does it matter if page one is only showing 5–7 results instead of the usual 10? If your article is ranking in position 8, you’re probably screaming, ‘Hell yeah!’

While, in reality, it’s not going to make much of a difference. Because over 95% of people click on one of the first five results:

International exact position for content marketing studies

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So, if you’ve been competing to get on the first page, you’ve been wasting your efforts. You need to be within the top 5 results. Which takes a lot more than just good content.

Optinmonster recently shared the ten most important SEO ranking factors for 2019.

the ten most important SEO ranking factors for content marketing studies

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When looking at the list, it’s understandable if you start to feel a little excited about your chances. After all, the first three ranking factors (site security, page speed, and mobile friendliness ) are all fairly easy to meet with little to no technical or SEO knowledge .

Unfortunately, it starts to go downhill from there. It’s nearly impossible to gain the links and social signals required to rank in the top positions on search results.

Research from Moz and Buzzsumo indicated that 75% of blog posts received zero links and fewer than ten shares.

And it’s only gotten worse over the last four years. Much worse.

Today, according to a study by Backlinko, 94% of all blog posts have zero external links . 94%!

94% of all blog posts have zero external links for content marketing studies
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That means only 6% of the content being produced earns even a single backlink.

And your chances of getting multiple backlinks is even less likely. The same study shows that only 2.2% of posts earn backlinks from more than one external website.

Yet the top SERP spot holders have acquired thousands of links:

SERP spot holders for content marketing studies

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Competition is fierce. And the newer your site is, the more you’re at a disadvantage.

No one is going to link to your post unless it’s the best of the best.

That means content that: is audience and intent driven, has compelling copy, and covers a wide variety of subjects.

Sure, these types of articles might have been good enough in the past. But these days, all the experts agree that anything surface level isn’t going to make the grade :

Result Comparison for content marketing studies

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It’s no wonder that bloggers are relying more and more on paid traffic and influencers to help them reach their audience.

According to research conducted by Orbit Media, the number of bloggers who pay for website traffic has increased by 322% in the last five years!

Bloggers who report strong results based on type of promotions for content marketing studies

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These days, only the top 1% of 1% will ever show up in the top five SERPs.

And that’s not even the worst part…

2. Click-through rates are abysmal

We’ve already covered that 95% of click-throughs go to the first five results in SERPs. Which is bad enough. But just how closely did you look at that graph that I shared?

Let’s blow it up for easier viewing:

Click-through rates are abysmal for content marketing studies

Over 30% of CTRs on a desktop go to just the first SERP result. And that rate gets cut roughly in half as soon as your article slips just one position. While things are mildly better on mobile devices, it’s still a shockingly steep curve.

By the time you’re in third place, you’re only getting a third of the click-throughs of first place.

At this point, you may be so depressed by the competitive SERP environment that you’re thinking about your other options. After all, SEO is far from the only way to get your content out there.

Maybe you’re willing to put your money into paid ads?

Well, that’s no guarantee that your content will be seen either. According to WordStream’s latest survey, the average AdWords CTR is 3.17% for search and 0.46% for display ads.

Google Adrrords Industry Benchmarks average click through rate

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Both these averages are higher than when the survey was first done in 2016. But the average cost per click has also gone up over that period. Which brings us back to the insanely competitive battleground.

You could opt for social media ads instead. But the competition is just as fierce there. Acquisio reports that the average CTR of a Facebook Ad ranges between 0.5%–1.6%.

What about email marketing?

This option is marginally better, with an industry average CTR of 7.06%, according to Constant Contact.

All Industries Overall Average for content marketing studies

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But of course, you need to account for the insane reduction in potential reach. Since you’ve now gone from a SERP or social media audience in the 6–7 digits to a small mailing list. Even with the right lead magnets , your list is probably only in the 4–5 digits.

Wait, what about video content ? Cisco reported that 82% of all internet traffic will be related to video content by 2021. And as a newer development, it should be less competitive, with better results, right?

Wrong.

Video marketing is already as saturated a market as blogging , if not more so. Companies are already dominating with video, and first to market advantage for it was lost years ago:

Case Study Snowboard addiction for content marketing studies

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People already watch a staggering hour or more of online video content every day. And video-based ads have skyrocketed by 95% in the last few years.

Andrew Chen coined a special name for this CTR problem: the Law of Shitty Clickthroughs.

Back in the early days, even mediocre content got noticed, because there was very little competition. Skip ahead to 2011 and CTRs had already dropped to alarmingly low levels.

Check out Andrew Chen’s display ad example:

Check out Andrew Chen’s display ad example for content marketing studies

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And as he predicted, CTRs have continued to decay.

3. The game is rigged

We’ve already talked about the fact that Google is reducing the number of SERPs on page one. But we didn’t talk about what those organic results are being replaced with.

Enter the Knowledge Graph.

The game is rigged for content marketing studies

The knowledge graph was created by Google to answer people’s questions without making them click on a result to find the answer.

In other words, you’re now competing with the house. And the house always wins.

A recent study conducted by Moz reports that 40% of search results now end without a single click.

Which means that 40% of people have got their answers straight from Google, without ever having to click through to your website or anyone else’s.

And that percentage will only continue to grow.

Back on Wednesday, March 14, 2018, Google started experimenting with zero-result SERPs where organic search results were entirely removed from a small number of keyword searches such as the one shown here about the time in Seattle:

Google started experimenting with zero-result SERPs for content marketing studies

The experiment was halted less than a week later . But it is still an important omen of what may come.

Danny Sullivan update post for content marketing studies

And we shouldn’t be surprised since this has been Google’s primary objective since Day 1 .

Couple that with the fact that most people only read for 15 seconds on your content, leading to scroll maps and heat maps that look like this :

heat maps for content marketing studies

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All that hard work for almost zero real content consumption, and therefore, no brand awareness or development.

I’m not trying to suggest that SEO will disappear. Far from it. After all, Amazon and Voice search both equal SEO.

But we need to start looking at SEO and content in a new light. It’s no longer just text. And it’s no longer even static. Content is becoming more conversational, both through voice search and chatbots .

This is just yet another sign that SERPs have become winner-take-all markets. And ‘good’ content is not enough to survive. So what makes the cut? What is better than “good enough” in today’s market?

Let’s cover a few examples of how companies are standing out.

Check out this customer service resume article by Freshdesk . It covers multiple subsections and targeted keywords in the customer service space. This is a great start. Then, it delivers with detailed content and a free PDF to drive big-time on site and user satisfaction, all while building their brand:

customer service resume article by Freshdesk for content marketing studies

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Want to produce better content? Stop settling for mediocrity. Drive value through depth, content upgrades, and understanding what the user wants to see.

Another stellar example is from SpyFu , a competitive analysis tool. In a blog post about SEO audits , a topic that has been covered more times than you can probably count without going crazy, they vastly improved their value. How? First, they added a table of contents for usability:

blog post about SEO audits for content marketing studies

But that was just a minor step. Then, they took usability to the next level and created a video showcasing how to do it for visual learners and those that want to follow along:

How to do an SEO Audit for content marketing studies

Finally, they were responsive in the comments section answering any and every inquiry:

Responsive comment for content marketing studies

Want better results? You have to go the extra mile as SpyFu did. That means better-formatted content, more formats to consume it, and responding fast.

Conclusion

Content marketing can still provide significant results for your business. If it couldn’t, people wouldn’t still be creating millions of blog posts every day.

But in this hyper-competitive market, with no barrier to entry, anything less than extraordinary will languish in obscurity.

If your content is not amazing, unique, or controversial… don’t bother. Because the odds are literally stacked against you in almost every way possible.

You’re fighting an uphill battle. Where you need to be the one in a million to get noticed.

Guest author: David Zheng is the Founder of Growth Wit  and Wisemerchant  and the Head of Growth at BuildFire . He specializes in growth and content strategies to help influencers, eCommerce brands, venture-backed startups, and Fortune 500 companies grow their traffic and revenue online.

The post Why Good Content Isn’t Enough: Lessons From The Latest Content Marketing Studies appeared first on Jeffbullas’s Blog .

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How to Adapt Your Content Strategy to the Future of Google

How to Adapt Your Content Strategy to the Future of Google

SEO is one of the fastest-changing marketing channels and no wonder! Google is coming up with dozens of updates and changes each year forcing forward-thinking digital marketers to come up with more and more ways to keep up.

But keeping up is not even enough. In order to maintain consistent search engine visibility marketers need to keep looking into the future of Google. What will the search industry look like in 5 years and what should we be doing now to prepare?

I’m not that good at predicting the distant future of Google but here are three emerging trends to embrace now:

Use topic clusters to structure internal linking

While internal links define the hierarchy and structure of a site, they also make navigation intuitive and easy, while distributing link authority through the pages. However, if they are not organized well, the full benefit of an internal linking strategy won’t be achieved.

Using the topic clustering technique is a great way to create an effective internal linking strategy that will help both search crawlers and human beings to better understand your site.

Simply put, a topic cluster is grouping your site pages by topic. It’s an enhanced and combined version of a blog category page and the manually curated “Resources” page.

Topic clusters should demonstrate that a site covers a specific subject comprehensively, i.e. users will be able to find an answer to any subject-related question on the site.

You can build an effective topic-cluster-driven internal linking page by following these two steps:

1. Identify your topics

You’ll need comprehensive pages for each topic the site covers, so it’s important to determine the site’s main topic areas.

Although it’s normally not fun to do, it’s critical to conduct a content audit. This will force you to take a long, hard look at the existing content. This should be relatively easy, provided you’ve been tagging and categorizing the content consistently.

If the content is not structured by tags and categories, it’s a good idea to create a simple spreadsheet to help you create order and structure. Each row should have the URL of a blog post and the corresponding focus topic. Identify the posts that could serve as pillar pages.

2. Build clusters and interlink them together

When this is done, it should be relatively easy to group all posts into clusters. When it comes to internal linking:

  • Use breadcrumbs for each article within a cluster to link to its parent/pillar page. Use Google’s official best practices to markup the breadcrumbs using structured data.
  • Use in-content links to internally inter-link all pages within each cluster.

I am a big proponent of in-content links for two main reasons:

  • They are believed to be more effective for spreading link equity around the site than menus and footer links.
  • They are better for click-through:

Genentech click through for future of google

Although it is okay to link content to topics that are not in the cluster, this should only be done when necessary. The objective here is to provide links that will guide visitors through the customer journey and answer increasingly specific questions while breaking down conversion barriers.

3. Create an on-going strategy to promote your clusters

Re-vamping your current category pages to turn them into clusters is a good idea. Here’s a great article on how to rank your category pages by turning them into pillar content pages:

Create the On-gfoing Strategy to Promote Your Clusters for future of google

As you can see, the end goal is to create high-quality multi-media resource pages categorizing your existing content by topic. On top of all, these are also your biggest assets. By marketing these pages you ultimately promote all the individual articles and assets that are linked from your pillar pages.

My suggestion is to add your SEO team to your social media calendar for them to be able to add these pages for social media promotion as soon as they are done working on them. ContentCal is a tool that can help you put these articles into circulation. Your SEO team can add the pillar pages into the “Pinboard” for your social media manager to put them on a schedule:

ContentCal Pinboard for future of google

[ContentCal bridges the gap between your SEO and social media marketing teams allowing your SEO assets to be effectively promoted through brand social media channels increasing their organic visibility.]

Leverage user intent for SEO

In the SEO world, “Searcher intent optimization ” has received a lot of attention lately. These days Google focuses on identifying and measuring user satisfaction signals. And the future of Google looks very similar.

This refers to a search sequence when a user sends a query, finds and clicks on the relevant link, discovers useful information, and then either enters a query for the next stage of the journey or stops searching.

The objective of user-intent profiling is to achieve higher user satisfaction which improves your rankings (by sending positive signals to Google) and keeps your customers on your site (by giving them what they want).

Users can be targeted based on funnel stages if the content is created around the search intent. Queries can be divided into three categories : transactional, informational, and navigational.

  • Transactional queries are executed by users who have done their research and want to purchase something. These are bottom-of-the-funnel prospects and these queries have the highest value. These often include terms such as “requirements,” “integration,” “pricing,” and “comparison.”
  • Informational queries are executed by users who are doing research and are not really interested in purchasing anything. These often include terms like “when is,” “how does,” “what is,” etc.
  • Navigational queries are executed by users who want to find out where they need to go to in order to fulfill a need. They could be looking for a physical location or a URL. These include the brand name, “address,” “location,” or a generic product name.

You will likely to see more clicks and conversions if you focus on creating content that directly responds to these three types of queries. Search engines use topic modeling and other known factors to determine user intent and match it to page content.

You can reverse-engineer Google’s understanding of search intent for each query using Text Optimizer which is an advanced SEO tool that grabs Google search results for each query and applies semantic analysis to extract intent tables:

  • Type in your search query
  • Select “Google”
  • Click “New text”

You’ll see the tool generate the list of all terms and concepts that will help you optimize your content for Google and its users’ expectations:

Optimize your content for future of google

Furthermore, conversion optimization is needed to help you identify whether you are doing a good job meeting your visitors’ expectations and giving them what they came for. Finteza is the easiest way to set up event monitoring and compare their performance across different landing pages:

Finteza for future of google

[Keep track of your on-page conversions to identify those that fail to satisfy the user’s intent]

Focus on topic optimization instead of keyword optimization

While the goal of keyword optimization is to make a page rank for individual keywords, the objective of topic optimization is to make a page rank for a group of keywords, i.e. the main keyword and its close synonyms and related terms.

Topic optimization should result in more diverse rankings and satisfy a changing algorithm with the future of Google moving further away from keywords and closer to a user’s intent. If you do a good job discussing a topic in-depth, you have likely touched on many other ideas that are connected. A page that is optimized well indicates both depth and breadth to search engines, enabling the site to rank well for a bigger range of keywords.

The skyscraper technique is commonly used to get topical authority. This, basically, involves taking the piece of content that ranks highest for the topic and then writing a better piece.

You could also exploit areas where your competition has only scratched the surface and dive deeper with your own content by adding step-by-step instructions, examples, figures, and stats. You should use whatever your audience might find helpful and relevant, while never stuffing it with more keywords.

The basic point is not to write the most in-depth, longest piece of content, but rather to answer relevant questions, hence providing the most helpful content. Some examples include:

You can use Serpstat’s grouping tool to identify topics behind keywords and optimize for the whole group of keywords:

Serpstats grouping tool for future of google

[Serpstat uses Google search results pages to group keywords by relevancy allowing you to optimize for each group rather than for each individual keyword]

Prepare for the screenless buying journey

Most importantly, in 5 or so years ago, the future of Google may become 100% screenless. Voice and visual search are both on the rise. Consumers are becoming increasingly comfortable with the idea of speaking their search terms to a device or showing the camera what they want to buy.

And in response, they expect directions and actions, not ten blue links that have been driving online visibility for more than a decade now.

How do you adapt to screenless and consequently click-less search?

There are things you can do already. For example, adopting Google Actions to teach smart speaker devices to navigate and use your site is one of the first things to do. Next, be sure to implement conversational marketing, i.e. create smart chatbots to help your customers whenever they need assistance.

Luckily, conversational marketing is easier than you think. Botsociety makes it easy to create smart customer support and shopping assistance chatbots.

Botsociety for future of google

[Teach your site to speak back to your customer by designing smart chatbots that can teach themselves to be of better service as they collect more data]

Be strategic about the future of Google

Content marketers have to be strategic and think about achieving broader objectives when content is created. Using a link structure that is organized, topic clusters that are comprehensive, and user intent profiles is more important for SEO strategies than ever before.

Guest author: Jessy Troy is co-owner of Hire Bloggers , a blog dedicated to helping bloggers find paid gigs or even full-time jobs. You can catch up with me on Twitter as @JessyTroy

The post How to Adapt Your Content Strategy to the Future of Google appeared first on Jeffbullas’s Blog .

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Internet Marketing

6 Email Marketing Myths You Can Ignore

6 Email Marketing Myths You Can Ignore written by John Jantsch read more at Duct Tape Marketing

Email marketing has been around for a long time, and consequently, people have developed a lot of opinions about what works and what doesn’t. However, as the digital marketing landscape has changed, some things about email marketing that used to be true are no longer so. And there are some things that have always been myths, but still persist today.

Here, let’s debunk the six biggest email marketing myths out there.

1. Email Marketing is Dead

As more digital channels have emerged through which you can reach clients, there have been whispers going around that email marketing is dead.

In reality, that couldn’t be further from the truth. Marketers still see a great deal of value in email marketing, and are still investing heavily in this tactic. According to surveys from HubSpot , 93% of B2B marketers use email to distribute content. On the B2C side of things, 59% of consumers report that information in an email has influenced their purchasing decisions. And everyone is on email. Ninety-nine percent of consumers check their email every single day (and most report doing so multiple times a day).

2. Frequent Emails Feel Spammy

Some marketers are hesitant to send regular emails at the risk of annoying their mailing list. And it’s true, for most consumers, their inboxes are crowded places. A survey from Marketing Charts found that the average person receives 416 marketing emails each month.

But just because others are sending emails doesn’t mean you shouldn’t send any (or only send one once in a blue moon). The key to avoiding that spammy feel is ensuring that your content is always valuable. If you send emails that add value, provide information, and are actually helpful to your audience, you’re a lot more likely to see strong open rates and a reduction unsubscribes.

If you’re looking for tips on creating engaging content, check out this post.

3. Unsubscribes Are a Bad Thing

No one enjoys rejection, and an unsubscribe can certainly sting. But the reality is that unsubscribes are not necessarily a bad thing. A clean email list is key to staying on ISPs’ good sides, and that’s what will keep your emails from being barred from inboxes.

You can do things on your end to clean your list—like scanning for typos and giving people an option to re-opt-in if they’ve been unresponsive to your recent email marketing efforts—but unsubscribes are a way for you to get your customers to do some of the heavy lifting for you. An unsubscribe is someone saying they’re no longer interested in your content, and that could be for any number of reasons.

If you see a large number of unsubscribes all at the same time, that might be indicative of a problem with your content, but if you see people leave your list from time to time, that’s simply making space for a higher open rate overall and a better relationship with ISPs.

4. There is a Magic Day and Time to Send Emails

Some marketers swear by sending emails at a very specific time. If it’s not Tuesday at 10am, they won’t send an email!

There has been a lot of research over the years, with marketers trying to find that magic time where open rates will be high and conversions will abound. But these studies have been less than definitive, and so there is no one-size-fits-all approach to timing emails.

It’s certainly true that some audiences will engage with emails at a higher rate at certain times of day, but that will vary from business to business, so trying to stick with some antiquated idea about the one day and time you can send an email won’t serve you.

Instead, do some experimenting, send emails at several days and times throughout the week and see which ones get the highest engagement. Then aim for that time again, and see if you can repeat your results. Be willing to mix things up, and don’t be afraid to send emails out more than once a week (see point 2 above).

5. Long Subject Lines Spell Trouble

For a long time, marketers were told to shy away from subject lines that were too long to be fully displayed in someone’s inbox. That sounds on the surface like a sensible piece of advice, but it turns out that a recent study from Marketing Sherpa busted this long-held belief.

While email subject lines that fall into that “sweet spot” of 41-50 characters performed well, it’s actually longer subject lines with 61-70 characters that did the best. So don’t stress about fitting all of your email subject lines into those narrow parameters. Instead, work to create a subject that is attention-grabbing and really tells readers what they can expect to find inside the email.

6. Avoid Repeat Messages

Super Office reports that the average open rate for emails in 2018 was just shy of 25%. That means that three out of four people on your list are not seeing any given email. Some people won’t read a given email because the subject line doesn’t interest them, but others will miss it for completely innocuous reasons. They may have been busy that day or accidentally deleted the message.

Whatever the case may be, for your most important content, it’s okay to send the same email copy twice in order to get the highest engagement. This isn’t a tactic you should take with every email message, but it can actually be valuable when used sparingly.

There are a few caveats here. First, don’t send the same email on the same day. Instead, wait several days before you resend it. You should also switch up the subject line, so that those who wrote the email off the first time because of its subject line might open it this time, and so that those who opened it the first time around aren’t put off by getting the exact same email twice.

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How to Do a Content Audit That Will Reveal Hidden Gems On Your Website

How to Do a Content Audit That Will Reveal Hidden Gems On Your Website

The year 2019 introduced Marie Kondo and her famous KonMari Method of decluttering. Some call it phenomenal, but Kondo herself considers it as life-changing magic.

Made to be applied for just belongings, the KonMari method has been applied to personal lives, relationships, careers, and whatever aspect you need cleaning up. But what about in the digital world? The Internet is a vast space filled with content in all types, forms, and lengths that some aren’t even needed anyway.

But what if we apply the KonMari method to the content we see online? Then you don’t really need magic, you just need a content audit.

One gruesome task every digital marketer needs to face at one point in their content strategy is doing a content audit. If you’ve done content auditing a hundred times or are just starting to do one for your own website, read on to find out the step-by-step guide on how to do a content audit.

What is a content audit?

In technical terms, a website content audit is an inventory of all the indexable content you have on your website mostly in the form of written blogs. But if you have more diverse content like images, infographics, videos, and even audio then you can count that too.

Line up all your content, consider their individual performance to your overall analytics then compare it to your set KPI. Only then can you consider content that can be thrown away.

Why conduct a content audit?

What Internet users expect from a website experience for content audit

Image Source: MarketingCharts

From the chart above, most respondents answered that website performance like fast streaming and quick page speed is the first thing users expect when loading a website. To achieve the optimal page load speed, you can optimize images and fonts, and minify your Javascript or CSS codes for faster loading time.

Next on the priority list is the content of the website. Users check if the posts are still relevant, fresh, and updated.

If you’ve had a website running for more than 5 years, maybe even less, but you post and produce blogs on the regular then you definitely need a content audit. This is to make sure that the content you’ve produced is all working and converting for you? It’s not about quantity, but the quality you put online that matters most.

With just a simple content audit report, you can:

  • Remove low-quality content;
  • Improve on the trust and quality of the output on your website;
  • Update the old and outdated content available on your website; and
  • Recognize content opportunities.

Be like Marie Kondo; put everything you own in your hands and ask if it sparks joy in your life. In the case of digital marketing and content, view all your content and see if it sparks interest and converts in your favor.

How to do a website content audit

Step 1: Prepare a spreadsheet

Have an area where you can lay all of your belongings and asses them one by one. Step 1 - Prepare a Spreadsheet for content audit

Love them or hate them, spreadsheets are the lifeblood of every content strategy. Lay all your data in that single spreadsheet. Just keep adding tabs for every set of data you will be putting and laying down.

Tip: Google Spreadsheets saves time, space, and effort. Use it well.

Step 2: Crawl and index your website

Gather all your belongings and categorize them, placing them in proper bins.

Time to gather up all your content! You can download all the data and pages on your own, but if you have a number of pages then you might as well call a friend to help. Don’t worry about all the pages, just include all the indexable content.

Tip: Have a column to place your URL, Page Title, Date Published, Content Type, and all the other information you deem useful in your decluttering process!

Step 3: Import your analytics and data

The process of elimination and discarding to see what is needed and not.

What is an audit without checking for performance? Here is how to do a content audit of your website and data you’ll be needing from Google Analytics:

  • Organic Traffic – to know how many people are visiting and browsing through your website.
  • Paid Traffic – if ever you’ve ever invested in PPC then you must include the result of the ads.
  • Bounce Rate – to help analyze what’s wrong with the page; it may be because of the page speed on your website or the content is just not that good.
  • Time on Page – if you’re a blog site and visitors only spend a matter of seconds then are they really reading your content? This is where you will find out if your content strategy is effective.
  • Unique Visitors – the more views and visitors you get on your website then the more chances of conversion or engagement with your users.
  • Pages Per Session – after the homepage where do they go next? Do they browse on the website? This tracks how far users explore and read more on the website.
  • New vs Returning Users – these are the two most significant users a website can get. Are you attracting new people? And is your website gaining a following with its content or services?
  • Traffic Sources – this is needed for you to know where your users are coming or redirecting from. Do they catch you on Facebook often? Or is Search really your strong suit?
  • Conversions – if you have a sign-up for a newsletter or an ‘add to cart’ on your website you need to measure if those call to actions are working and getting the results you want.

Step 4: Import backlink data

Gather everything you own, even the objects that mean the most.

Whether you’re actively doing outreach for your website or not, backlinks can be a big boost in credibility and your DA score.

Collect all the links, list them down in your spreadsheet, and review them one by one. Instead of asking “what sparks joy?”, ask what links are following the Golden Rule of E-A-T : expertise, authority, and trustworthiness.

Step 5: Review and analyze your data

Ask yourself and your belongings, “Does this spark joy?” If yes, then keep it. If not, discard the object.

Time for the most important step! The data you’re looking at is just bare skin and bones, you need to bring life to your data with a content audit. Once you’ve gathered all your data, process it one by one and then collectively.

  • List your key takeaways from the analytics and data you’ve gathered.
  • Review the content you’ve been posting and ask these questions in place of ‘what sparks joy’:
  1. Is the content updated and still relevant?
  2. Is their significant traffic on the page?
  3. Is the content ranking on search engines ?
  4. Are there significant shares on social media ?
  • Weed through your backlinks and see if they give significant value to your website or not because they’re just dead weight at this point.

It’s alright to take time with this step. This is where you really learn how to do a content audit of your website because this is where you’re dissecting your content strategy of the whole website and all its pages.

Tip: Review it all manually. No amount of SEO or online tools can give you the exact answer you need to improve your strategy. Put on your thinking caps, this is a long process.

Step 6: Create a content audit report

Discard all the unnecessary and start arranging your kept belongings in its proper place.

Create a content edit report for content audit

As with all things, documentation is highly needed and very much recommended. Put your whole process in a presentation format and present all your data in a simplified manner.

An example flow would be: first, present the gathered data, second is show your elimination process, third is the end result, and so on and so forth. You need to put your whole content audit process into writing not just for formality, but for future reference when you do another audit in the years to come.

Touch things only once

In KonMari, once you’ve touched an object be sure to put it back where you got it right away. Once you place something down and leave it, you are obligated to touch it and clean up again.

Just like with a content audit, if you don’t want to keep doing this tedious process annually or at least regularly, make sure what you posting online fits the bill and won’t even need to be audited.

Guest author: Aby League is an environmental researcher with a Masters Degree in Biology. She is working as a freelance writer and researcher of all things that interest her like Technology, Online Banking and Shopping, Market Research, and Innovation.

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