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Showing posts from November, 2017

Report: Google to reabsorb Nest to better compete with Amazon in smart home market

According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, Google is considering bringing its smart home device unit, Nest, back under the Google umbrella. Nest was acquired in January 2014 for roughly $3.2 billion.Nest became part of Google’s “other bets” when the company formed Alphabet in 2015 and separated its other lines of business. In its most recent earnings report, the company said that “other bets” collectively brought in $302 million (vs. $197 million a year ago). Analysts believe a meaningful chunk of that belongs to Nest.The rationale behind the potential reintegration is that the Nest team and Google teams could work more closely to develop more tightly integrated products. In addition, there are manufacturing and distribution synergies from the recombination.The analyst consensus is that Nest has underperformed relative to its potential and early promise. It’s now just one among many dozens of home automation companies. But as Google pushes Google Home as the gateway to smart ho…

Choosing an enterprise SEO platform

With hundreds, thousands, tens of thousands, and even millions of pages, sites, social conversations, images and keywords to manage and optimize, enterprise SEO has become increasingly complicated and time-consuming. Using an enterprise SEO platform can increase efficiency and productivity while reducing the time and errors involved in managing organic search campaigns.More specifically, managing SEO through an enterprise toolset can provide the following benefits:Many tools, one interface — enterprise SEO platforms perform many tasks in one system.More efficient management of global operations with built-in diagnostics that can identify sitewide issues across languages, countries or regions.The ability to stay up to date with the search engine algorithm changes and their impact on ranking factors.Automated reporting to provide data in near-real time.If you are considering licensing an SEO software tool, MarTech Today’s “Enterprise SEO Platforms: A Marketer’s Guide” will help you deci…

How to Embed the Facebook Customer Chat Widget in your Website

Looking for a simple and free alternative to popular live chat software like Intercom or Zendesk chat? Well, the new customer chat widget from Facebook Messenger is here and anyone can embed these widgets on their website to engage with visitors in real time.Facebook Customer Chat widget, if you are new, lets people chat with businesses without leaving the website. The widget works on both desktop computers and mobile phones. The business owner needs a Facebook Page and all the visitor needs is a regular Facebook account.There’s no learning curve or complex installation. The visitor clicks the Facebook icon on your web page, type their message and you (the business owner) get an instant notification on your Facebook Page. If you are online, you can carry on the conversation with the visitor on the Facebook website or inside the Facebook Pages Manager app on your phone.If you would like to give Facebook Customer Chat a try, go to Digital Inspiration, wait for the page to load and click…

Facebook halts advertisers from using targeting to exclude racial groups

Tell me if you’ve heard this one before: Facebook is disabling some ad-targeting options because it’s been revealed how those those options can be used to discriminate against people.First, some backstory. A little over a year ago, Facebook came under fire for enabling advertisers to skirt federal housing laws and use its quasi-racial ad-targeting options to discriminate against people based on ethnicity (African American, Asian American and Hispanic). Then, earlier this year, Facebook said that it would institute a system to reject housing-, employment- or credit-related ads that exclude racial groups. However, last week, ProPublica revealed that system to be porous. In response, Facebook is temporarily disabling advertisers from using its multicultural affinity ad targeting options to exclude people in those segments from seeing an ad.“ProPublica recently found that safeguards we put in place earlier this year were not as comprehensive as they should have been. This was a failure in…

What are sitelinks and how can I get them?

Back in 2015, we published an article entitled ‘How do I get sitelinks to appear in my site’s search results?’ which looked at how to get the hallowed set of additional links which can appear beneath your website’s SERP listing, known as ‘sitelinks’.At the time of publication, this was all up-to-the-minute, cutting-edge information. However, since then, Google has made a change to the way that Search Console handles sitelinks, making our invaluable words of wisdom sadly outdated.As a result, we’ve written up this refreshed and revised guide containing everything you need to know about sitelinks and how you can give yourself the best chance of getting them.What are sitelinks?As I hinted at in the introduction just now, sitelinks are additional links which appear beneath the main URL for a brand or publisher when you search for it on Google. They deep link to other pages within your site, and are designed by Google to “help users navigate your site”.N.B.: These are not to be confused wi…

What Snapchat’s major redesign and algorithmic feed means for marketers

Snapchat is putting up a wall between content from people’s friends and content from everyone else — including organic Stories from brands and other media — in a major redesign of the mobile app unveiled on Wednesday that will roll out over a number of weeks.The redesigned Snapchat does away with the Stories tab and divvies it up between a friends-only feed of Stories and private messages and an everyone-else feed of Snapchat-curated Stories from celebrities and publishers as well as the app’s original shows and Our Stories collections.The Friends tab replaces the Chat tab that had lived on the left side of the app, and the everyone-else Discover tab merges the previously separate Stories and Discover tabs into a single tab on the right side. Advertisers will be able to reach people through both feeds, though the ways in which brands — as well as publishers and influencers — can organically reach people on Snapchat is changing.Friends tabSnapchat’s new Friends tab closely mirrors its …

Marketing Day: AI marketing guide, display ad forecasts & GDPR enforcement

Here’s our recap of what happened in online marketing today, as reported on Marketing Land and other places across the web.From Marketing Land:The changing SERP: Understanding and adapting to dynamic search results
Nov 29, 2017 by Jim Yu Search results have become more personalized and dynamic over the years, creating a more challenging SEO environment for search and content marketers. But columnist Jim Yu shows how these changes can create opportunities for those willing to do the work.Retailers, software might be eating your lunch, but it won’t eat everything
Nov 29, 2017 by Chuck Moran
With closures and tech shifts, it looks like hard times for brick-and-mortar retailers. But columnist Chuck Moran says they need to take a page from digital advertising and understand that the human touch still matters.The CMO’s guide to AI’s marketing impact for 2018
Nov 29, 2017 by Andy Betts
Though AI in marketing is still an intangible concept for many CMOs, it will be here before you know it. Co…

The changing SERP: Understanding and adapting to dynamic search results

Consumer search behaviors are changing rapidly. According to a recent report from BrightEdge (disclaimer: my employer), 57 percent of searches now begin with a mobile device, and last year Google revealed that voice search has increased to about 20 percent of all Google mobile search queries.And of course, Google is constantly adjusting their SERP layout in order to better align with a searcher’s context and expectations. Consumers now expect to see rich content in SERPs that includes not just standard text listings, but video, images, local map results, featured snippets and more. The standard organic listings themselves also sometimes feature rich snippets, which enhance the listing by presenting information in a way that is easy to scan and often visually appealing.[Read the full article on Search Engine Land.]

via Marketing Land

Retailers, software might be eating your lunch, but it won’t eat everything

Run for cover! The “Retail Armageddon” is upon us. At least, that is, if we’re to believe all of the business pub headlines this holiday season. No doubt, things definitely appear to be at their most dire when you’re strolling through the mall, bopping along to “Jingle Bells” and passing shuttered storefront after shuttered storefront. Macy’s, Sears, The Limited, Wet Seal, Radio Shack — the list of major retailers that are closing locations or cashing in their chips altogether seems to go on and on.It’s an objectively scary time for brick-and-mortar retailers. This disruption is the acceleration of a shift years in the making, as consumer shopping behavior has continued to move online and as the Amazon behemoth has continued to swallow market share in retail sector after retail sector.No matter your industry — financial services, hospitality, transportation, you name it — there’s an overarching sense that Silicon Valley is coming to eat your lunch. Right now, that’s particularly the …

The CMO’s guide to AI’s marketing impact for 2018

Given the rate of Artificial Intelligence dollars flowing into R&D — more than $30 billion a year — I think it’s safe to say we’ll be looking at a proliferation of AI-based tools in the very near future.It’s entirely possible that we’ll see this same volume of AI tech with applications in marketing in the near future as well, but many CMOs are not for it… not yet, anyway. Recent studies by both the McKinsey Global Institute (PDF) and MIT/Boston Consulting Group reported that only about 20 percent of companies have implemented AI technology in a meaningful way.The potential of AI in marketing is still largely abstract, but that’s okay. You don’t need to have it all figured out in the next quarter.In this article, we’ll take a look at the AI opportunities and work through some steps you can take today to get in position for the AI proliferation of tomorrow.[Read the full article on MarTech Today.]

via Marketing Land

Forecast: US display advertising to grow 70% by 2021, with social and mobile drivers

Forrester Research is out with its new US display advertising forecast through 2021. The firm says that mobile, video and social media advertising will grow and that more conventional online display advertising will suffer in part because of viewability, brand safety, fraud and other issues.Forrester also argues that Amazon will “steal market share” from Google and Facebook.The firm contends that social media ad spending will grow to $40 billion by 2021 and that social will grab the bulk of online display ad revenue, with much of that growth accruing to Facebook. Mobile advertising, with emphasis on in-app video, will be the primary growth engine of non-social display advertising during the forecast period.Source: Forrester data and forecasts (2017)Forrester says the majority of mobile display spending (“close to two out of every three mobile ad dollars”) will be in-app. That will also benefit Facebook and Google, which together control eight out of the top 10 apps in the US.The repor…

Already the owner of Prime Day, Amazon dominates Black Friday & Cyber Monday mentions

In addition to being the exclusive owner of Prime Day, Amazon also has a stranglehold on Black Friday and Cyber Monday when it comes to brand association.According to Amobee, an analytics company that measures digital content engagement across more than 600,000 sites, Amazon was the retailer most associated with Black Friday and Cyber Monday — mentioned in 36 percent of all Black Friday digital content, and a whopping 55 percent of all Cyber Monday content.Amobee says Amazon’s ownership of these two shopping days has grown since last year, when it took 31 percent of Black Friday brand-association references and 45 percent of Cyber Monday references.Following Amazon for both days were Target and Walmart. It’s not until you get to the No. 4 brand most associated with each day that the list of retailers differs from Black Friday to Cyber Monday — with Best Buy at No. 4 on Black Friday and eBay at No. 4 on Cyber Monday.Retailer brands most associated with Black FridayAmobee clarified that…

Taking on the duopoly: What are the mobile advertising alternatives to Facebook and Google?

Early this year, I was invited to attend a meeting with a digital sales team for a well-known media company and an agency with which they’ve been doing business for years. Our supporting role was to provide answers to anything related to location-based advertising.As the conversation progressed, the truth came out. The agency principal looks at the sales team, shrugs and says, “I love working with you, but my clients are pushing me to advertise on Facebook. They’ve got great targeting, and everybody uses it. I’m struggling to send business your way.”We immediately witnessed the blood draining from the faces of the sales reps, and the look of dejection that overcame them before they quickly rebounded in the positive fashion that salespeople often do.This conversation happens hundreds, if not thousands, of times each day across the US. Any sales team that competes for ad dollars from local, regional or national advertisers is hitting a brick wall.While Google has been a dominant force i…

GDPR enforcement may be driven by fears of liability

As GDPR Day (May 25, 2018) approaches, the experience of at least one complying marketing firm illuminates two major but hidden factors — one that could drive compliance and one that could hinder it.The hidden factor that could drive compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation: liability.Yes Lifecycle Marketing is a Portland, Oregon-based cross-channel marketing services firm, helping client companies with website customer preference centers (where email newsletters might be selected), email, SMS, push notifications and Facebook.SVP Marc Shull told me that his company has been working toward compliance by initiating new processes, consulting with outside experts, reviewing “every single screen” it offers, instituting new data governance policies, coding new capabilities to readily accommodate requests to change or delete personal data and other efforts.In other words, Shull said, Yes Lifecycle is making a good faith effort to comply. About 10 to 15 percent of the company’s …

6 innovative new search engines to keep an eye on

Plain and simple, Google isn’t the be-all-and-end-all of search engines, but it’s often easy to feel like it – perhaps nowhere more so than within the search industry itself.And when you think of other search engines besides Google, how many can you name? Bing? Yahoo? Maybe DuckDuckGo, if you’re privacy-conscious (or a bit of a tech hipster)?Believe it or not, there are a number of other search engines out there, still crawling the web and making their mark. Since Google has so completely dominated the “all-purpose” search engine space, many of them have moved to occupy more niche areas, like academia, or sought to distinguish themselves in other ways.As technology continues to have a hand in most everything that we do, it’s important to be aware of the other contenders in the industry. While they aren’t likely to revolutionize SEO overnight, they’re indicative of the trends and technology currently making their way through search, which could show up on a much larger scale later on.I…

Has Apple already missed the smart speaker market?

With the recent news that Apple’s HomePod smart speaker wouldn’t ship until next year, the company is missing the critical holiday shopping season. This is a potentially momentous decision.Apple released a statement saying it needed “a little more time before [HomePod is] ready for our customers” and that it would ship in “early 2018.” Whether the delay is because of production issues or because Apple needs to improve the functionality of the device is not clear.What is clear, however, is that there will be millions more Alexa and Google Home devices in US households when the wrapping paper settles in late December. And that may mean fewer consumers interested in buying Apple’s device when it does come out.Both Amazon and Google are aggressively discounting their speakers. Over this past weekend, you could purchase either an Echo Dot or Google Home Mini for $29. You could get a second-generation Echo or a Google Home for roughly $80.That discounting and promotion apparently drove a lo…

Shopify meets call tracking

As we enter the 2020s, e-commerce is set to generate more than $480 billion in the US and nearly $2 trillion globally. And while Amazon takes a lot of credit for online everything, they’re hardly the only game in town. A significant chunk of online retail is generated by smaller players, thanks in part to platforms like Shopify that make it easy to sell in the digital space, as well as in person — and that have the potential to merge the online and offline experience into an omnichannel version of commerce. Let’s take a look at how we got here, and how e-commerce platforms and retailers should be operating in this new, seamless marketplace.Shifting to ShopifyIn 2004, Tobias Lütke, a purveyor of fine snowboards, wanted to sell his wares online. Today, that would be simple; in the pre-Shopify world, e-commerce platforms were clunky and difficult to integrate with other services and platforms. Rather than continue to frustrate himself and limit his business, Lütke put in some long days o…

Looking to get out of the SEO business? Good!

It’s not your imagination — there’s no denying that SEO has become increasingly difficult over the last few years.A recent thread on WebmasterWorld highlighted this fact when a poster lamented the challenges he has faced adapting to changes in the SEO industry, and he said that he was considering leaving the industry entirely. This prompted Barry Schwartz to share a poll collecting feedback on the topic from a wider pool, and I was initially quite surprised to see that a large percentage of respondents shared the same concern as the original poster.In hindsight, I shouldn’t have been surprised at all. I can definitely understand the frustration. You build a business based on what you think the rules are, and almost immediately, they seem to change.[Read the full article on Search Engine Land.]

via Marketing Land

How your website redesign can sabotage your paid search efforts

Recently, my PPC agency almost declined to take on a new client because the client’s website was so severely outdated. The site looked bad, was difficult to use and didn’t have an easy way to convert prospects. But when we learned that the client was in the process of redesigning this website, we agreed to move forward.This scenario suggests that when clients announce a website redesign, it’s good news for PPC. But is it? Well, yes and no. Yes, because updated websites that work well and inspire trust can help our paid search efforts.But no, because website redesigns can also end up sabotaging paid search programs — at least temporarily. Experience tells us that redesigns rarely run smoothly from a PPC perspective. Inevitably, there will be problems we’ll need to fix.In this article, I’ll walk through what can go wrong with website redesign from the vantage point of PPC professionals. By knowing these problem areas in advance, you and your marketing team can anticipate and avoid some …

5 B2B marketing non-predictions for 2018

The year’s coming to a close, which means it’s time for B2B marketers to pull out their crystal balls and start theorizing about what’s in store for 2018. The list of predictions this year is likely to be long, given the new innovations and technologies that have emerged in 2017.I also have some thoughts about what’s coming in the new year. But I thought I’d change things up a bit and share what’s not going to happen. Here are five things that definitely won’t happen in 2018:[Read the full article on MarTech Today.]

via Marketing Land

Marketing Day: Cyber Monday results, Facebook Messenger Broadcast & Jones Soda CEO interview

Here’s our recap of what happened in online marketing today, as reported on Marketing Land and other places across the web.From Marketing Land:Cyber Monday brings in a record $6.59B in online sales, with $2B coming from mobile
Nov 28, 2017 by Amy Gesenhues
According to Adobe, this year’s Cyber Monday was the largest online shopping day in history, with sales up 16.8% over last year.Data fidelity matters, online and offline
Nov 28, 2017 by Jose Cebrian
If you want to be a better marketer, you need to start with clean data. Columnist Jose Cebrian discusses why clean data is essential for helping you target the right people effectively across channels.Facebook tests tool to make it easier for businesses to send message blasts on Messenger
Nov 28, 2017 by Tim Peterson
Messenger Broadcast appears to be the self-serve version of Messenger’s Broadcast API that enables businesses to message multiple accounts.Bpm’online has a built-in advantage for complying with GDPR
Nov 28, 2017 by Barry Lev…

What’s the secret to getting new clients?

Using marketing automation in your pitch is a near surefire way to win over prospective clients. You get to demonstrate your expertise with the platform, and clients can see exactly what’s missing in their marketing strategies.In this Agency Perspective from SharpSpring, you will:learn how one agency uses marketing automation to sell marketing how to personalize each pitch with the client’s data, logo and so on.see how one agency increased monthly recurring revenue by 30 percent.Visit Digital Marketing Depot to download “Your Secret Weapon for Getting New Clients.”

via Marketing Land

Cyber Monday brings in a record $6.59B in online sales, with $2B coming from mobile

Cyber Monday’s results are in, and according to Adobe, yesterday was the largest online shopping day in history, bringing in $6.59 billion in online sales. That’s more than $1.5 billion above Black Friday’s online sales haul.Adobe says Cyber Monday’s online revenue jumped 16.8 percent year over year, with nearly a billion more dollars spent this year over the same day in 2016.Mobile had a record-breaking day as well, with smartphones and tablets accounting for $2 billion of the total online retail sales. Adobe’s data shows that 47.4 percent of visits to retail sites on Cyber Monday happened on mobile devices (39.9 percent smartphones, 7.6 percent tablets) and accounted for 33.1 percent of revenue (24.1 percent smartphones, 9.0 percent tablets).Looking specifically at smartphones, Adobe says web traffic was up 22.2 percent year over year, and revenue was up 39.2 percent.Adobe’s vice president of marketing and customer insights, Mickey Mericle, says shopping on smartphones is now the ne…