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Showing posts from August 16, 2016
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‘Omnichannel’ may never catch on, but it’s the next big thing for local

There are a lot of buzzwords that purport to describe the latest digital marketing strategies for brick-and-mortar stores: multi-channel, cross-channel, online-to-offline, and omnichannel. Though all have slightly different nuances, they all describe (to some degree) an evolution of the way the wide variety of marketing media relate or intersect.Omnichannel isn’t a new term, but it seems never to have really caught on. Yet conceptually, it seems to be the next logical step for the path from search to purchase. Fred Argir, Chief Digital Officer at Barnes & Noble, put it this way: It’s a stupid word, but it’s no longer optional for businesses.The Local Search Association (LSA) worked to define the search space and path to purchase. While we initially illustrated it as a funnel pointing toward the final purchase, we realized that the funnel was too limiting — that consumers searching for products and services didn’t follow such a clean model. What we came up with was something more h…

The secret to writing awesome local content

It’s time for my monthly column again, which means it’s time for me to jump back up on my soapbox. If you’ve read any of my past articles here in the Local section of Search Engine Land, you know that my posts typically fall into two camps: helpful tips for marketers, or soapbox rants with helpful tips thrown in.This month, it’s the latter of the two. In fact, we might need to come up with a permanent moniker for my posts here. This month, on Greg’s Soapbox…The biggest problem with local SEOI work with car dealers all over the US on a daily basis, and since I speak at a ton of SEO and marketing conferences, I get to chat with business owners and marketers literally all over the world. Regardless of the vertical, the most common truth in local SEO is that the majority of sites out there have flat-out awful content.Yes, I’m probably talking about your site. I talk to people all the time who say that their content is awesome, but I find it’s almost always the same boring fluff that every…

Top tips to consider when it’s time to rebrand on social media

CMOs always have a wide variety of marketing strategies to work on: social media, SEO and PPC, content marketing and local and email marketing. However, one area that’s incredibly vital and should never be overlooked is branding.Often, the current brand used for a business just isn’t working effectively on your selected social media and can even be having an adverse effect on sales.Do you think it’s time for you to consider rebranding to help your business grow or gain back lost ground? If so, you don’t want to make changes lightly, and you need to be sure what’s currently broken, why it doesn’t work and how you need to do things differently in the future.If you’re losing your competitive edge because of a bad (or simply ineffective) brand, read on for some social media tips to consider as you work on a better brand over the coming months.Identify your true USPOne of the first things you should do before you begin rebranding on social media is to really analyze what it is that makes y…

Five ways analysts can take their skills to the next level

As I’ve been writing about tools and tactics quite a bit lately, I thought for this month’s column I’d take a step back and share some ideas on how you can become a better analyst.And improving our analysis skills as marketers goes beyond broadening our career options and helping us be better at our craft.It should actually improve all areas of your life as a byproduct of nurturing our critical thinking skills. Some ideas follow that I apply in my own life and hope you’ll consider too.Find a passion outside work which involves developinghypothesesThe scientific method, as you know, is a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge.You’re already applying this to your marketing and analytics practice by putting it to work fortesting and optimizationefforts (for example, having a hypothesis that a new landing page with less clutter will convert better, which you then test).But beyond work, you should also, in f…

What is game theory and can it be applied to PPC marketing?

1-800 Contacts is in trouble because it was applying game theory to improve their PPC results.The contact lens company allegedly struck deals that prevented rivals from bidding on PPC ads on Google and Bing using their trademarked terms and variants.According to the FTC complaint:“Beginning in 2004, 1-800 Contacts secured agreements with at least fourteen competing online sellers of contact lenses providing that the parties would not bid against one another in certain search advertising auctions.”The FTC is concerned because these reciprocal agreements could have resulted in reduced price competition in search auctions, higher prices for consumers, and misleading search ads.But… these agreements happen all the timeCompanies often make deals with each other to avoid bidding on each other’s terms. The result is lower costs and less competition. Such agreements make a ton of sense for all parties involved.Game theory is ultimately about how individual participants in a marketplace can co…

What Pokémon Go can teach us about email marketing

Last month, Pokémon Go exploded onto the scene, mainstreaming augmented reality and blowing engagement rates out of the water. Now, talk of augmented reality is everywhere, especially in branding and marketing circles.Pokémon Go is not the first app to integrate augmented reality technology into its platform, but it is certainly the most popular. And it’s the first time we’ve seen AR scaled to a mass audience at this level.The game’s overnight success speaks for itself. Since its release, it has outstripped Twitter in number of daily users and Facebook in terms of engagement. Of course, it’s every brand’s dream to see these levels of engagement, so now the question is how to replicate the game’s best features and apply them to marketing.How Pokémon Go engages consumersPokémon Go works by gaining access to users’ data, namely their GPS (Global Positioning System) location and Google accounts. Using Google Maps, Pokémon Go creates a virtual universe mapped onto a user’s real-world locat…

“Please, Come Back”! How to Return Clients To Your Website

Customer funnels are things every marketer knows about.Specific to each project, they help to understand how visitors turn into clients, and if visitors leave before then, precisely when and why they leave.Every stage of a customer funnel lets you catch a client and return them to the website.Understanding why they leave and retargeting them accordingly, you can build trust and push up your sales.It’s like trying to restore a lost happiness.Retargeting your customers reminds them of stories from romantic films where everyone lives “happily ever after”.Let’s explore this film and marketing relationship.“50 First Dates”: Clients visit your website
50 First Dates is a movie where a girl has short-term memory loss and every day, she forgets the guy she’s dating. He has to re-introduce himself every day and make her fall in love with him again/prove they were once a couple. At the end of the movie, we see their two kids and everyone is happy and smiling.The first stage of a customer funnel …

The best marketers know more about their customers

We think we know our customers. We think we understand what motivates, drives and excites them. We think that, thanks to all this “big data” we have at our fingertips, we can perfectly connect the dots between behavior and action.But here’s the brutal and honest truth: We don’t really know our customers at all or nearly as well as we should.  As marketers, it is easy to confuse data with knowledge. We forget that a single data point about a transaction or a social profile doesn’t tell the full story about a customer.We have to dig deeper and do a better job of gleaning insights from all those ones and zeroes. Access to data simply gives us the benefit of having many points of reference to better understand who our customers are and what they truly care about.That is why, when push comes to shove, we can’t forget that there are real, individual human beings behind this vast amount of data.Now here is the catch: Based on Gartner research, only one percent — yes, only one percent — of co…

Five common website redesign and rebranding mistakes to avoid

Far too often I see brands migrating over to a new web design or new domain name without considering their current SEO standing, and therefore completely undermining all their previous efforts which helped them become an authority figure in their industry.There is a lot of pre-planning and execution needed from an SEO perspective to ensure a website retains the keyword rankings and organic traffic you have built up in the past.Using the SearchMetrics compare tool, you can see over time how successful a redesign or rebrand is, an example of a poorly executed domain switch, would look like this:(brand name excluded, as I don’t want to name & shame!)This is not what you want, this brand launched on a new domain, as part of their re-brand. As you can see they have not maintained all of their keyword rankings.Ideally, when re-branding or changing the structure of the website, you want to maintain or even grow your search visibility, a good example of this is:To prevent keyword losses &…

Xiaomi Smart Washing Machine Launched in China for $226

Xiaomi has been constantly backing emerging startups and launching products in numerous sectors like LED strips, electric bike and a whole lot more. Today, the Chinese giant has extended the lineup with yet another device and this time it’s a washing machine through their collaboration with Minij – smart Mi Washing Machine.The washing machine looks like a standard everyday device we’re accustomed to, although, it is extremely portable and small weighing at 34 Kilograms and a holding capacity of 2.8 kg. Additionally, the machine measures 415 mm in thickness and is 500mm wide. It is powered by an Amotec Kore DD inverter motor backed up by Suspa shock absorbers which are interestingly, produced by the same German company that apparently manufactures shocks for Mercedes Benz E Class. Furthermore, the product is highly energy efficient as stated by Xiaomi and uses a front load design and drum mechanism to wash clothes. There’s also a child lock functionality and a “cooking wash” mode that …

MarTech Today: Designing dashboards, Privacy Shield compliance & Blab shuts down

Here’s our daily recap of what happened in marketing technology, as reported on Marketing Land and other places across the web.From Marketing Land:Designing dashboards people will actually use
Aug 15, 2016 by Nick Iyengar
Columnist Nick Iyengar discusses three common issues with dashboarding projects and how to find a data visualization solution that satisfies all the stakeholders within an organizationCheck out my BIG SMX East Preview. Then register & save!
Aug 15, 2016 by Chris Sherman
Search Engine Land’s SMX East is every SEO and SEM’s dream: a tactic-packed agenda, more than 100 dynamic and authoritative speakers, keynotes, exceptional networking, and more. If you’re involved in SEO, SEM, PR, social media or any other customer-facing activity, you owe it to yourself (and your company or client’s bottom line) to attend.[WATCH] Marketing Land Live #24: Twitter’s abuse problem, Facebook News Feed changes & more
Aug 15, 2016 by Matt McGee
In this week’s show, our panel talks …

Google launches FaceTime competitor, video-calling app Duo

AmsStudio / Shutterstock.com During its developer conference this year Google announced two new apps designed to take on incumbents in video calling and chat: Duo and Allo. Perhaps the fastest and most accurate way to describe Duo is as a cross-platform FaceTime competitor.Duo’s pitch is that its simple and will work on both iOS and Android, even on slow connections. Thus it contemplates a global audience, including developing markets where mobile connection speeds are still much slower. According to an interview with Google’s VP of communication products, Nick Fox, a “secondary motive” for Duo is to entice iPhone users to switch to Android.Duo boasts a clever feature called Knock Knock, “which lets you see live video of your caller before you answer, giving you a sense of what they’re up to and why they want to chat.”Duo replaces Google Hangouts for consumers. Originally positioned as the successor to Google Talk and GChat, Hangouts, will now become a B2B or enterprise-focused product…

LeEco & Coolpad Unveil Cool1 Dual with 4060mAh Battery and a $166 Price Tag

As expected, LeEco and Coolpad have launched their first product under the joint partnership which we had exclusively reportedCool1 Dual, the “dual” referring to the dual-camera setup. The budget handset checks all the factors for succeeding in the smartphone industry in 2016 with an adequate hardware combination and a cheap price tag to lure in customers.To begin with, Cool1 Dual features a 5.5-inch Full HD IPS panel with 450 nits brightness and a metallic unibody which looks inspired from the current LeEco Le 2 through some angles. The phone is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 652 Octa-Core processor (4 cores clocked at 1.8GHz ARM Cortex A72 + 4 cores at 1.2GHz A53), 3/4GB of LPDDR3 RAM, Adreno 510 GPU, 32GB / 64GB (eMMC5.1) internal storage without the support for a MicroSD card and a 4060 mAh battery pack underneath with fast charging. Moreover, it runs on LeEco’s EUI 5.6 layered on top of Android Marshmallow.Now coming to the camera arrangement, it offers dual 13MP f/2.0 lens

Q&A: ESPforMe’s Scott Rummler on how the future of search may all be in your mind

What do you imagine is the future of search?Voice… for sure. Machine learning alogrithms… certainly. Super-intelligent personal assistants that know your next move before you make it… probably.But what about search powered by your own brainwaves?Surprisingly, that may not be as far-fetched as it sounds.I recently caught up with Scott Rummler the creator of the world’s first web-based brainwave application, ESPforMe. It allows a user with an EEG headset to perform basic search functions remotely over the web, which he claims is a “major milestone, offering a completely unique mode of interaction that uses thoughts alone.”Understandably, I had a few questions for Scott around the practical implications of ESPforMe and its place in the future of search…Can you please describe what ESPforMe does?ESPforMe plugs your brain into the web. It’s a new way of interacting with the web that uses brainwaves instead of typing and clicking. You can use it to explore the web using thoughts alone.When …

Messaging App Hike Raises $175M from Tencent and Foxconn at a $1.4B Valuation

In the recent times, Hike has been unable to penetrate the Indian messaging market with its popular application. With services like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger taking enormous leads, Hike’s attempts have been mostly futile being unable to convince users to switch. However, today the company at a press conference, announced that it has closed a funding of $175 Million from new Chinese investors including Tencent and manufacturing firm, Foxconn. Additionally, Hike is now valued at a massive $1.4 Billion through Series D round.Tencent, the name behind China’s top messaging app – WeChat is the main appeal here. This could eventually lead to Hike fabricating a full-fledged platform integrating a wide range of services and content. As of now, Hike already supports features like news, shopping coupons, gaming and more. Free SMS has been always Hike’s major point of attraction and the rationale behind its initial success in the country. Furthermore, the messaging app now serves over 100 M…