interactive marketing

Second is the first loser – increase your rank using SEO!

The Seattle Sounders player, Zach Scott once told me “you miss every shot you don’t take.” To be successful in the digital age, organizations need to have an online presence; or in other words be searchable. Most Internet traffic occurs through search engines such as Google, Yahoo!, and Bing. But, if unable to be found by search engines, businesses are missing the opportunities that these search engines provide.

According to Moz’s Beginners Guide to SEO, “search engines’ primary responsibility is to serve relevant results to their users,” by having 2 main functions:

  1. Crawling and Building Index – Automated robots (spiders) search the web for documents, pages, files, news, videos and media through the use of links, and store them in hard drives in order for them to be recalled when searched
  2. Providing Answers – Using algorithms, search engines provide answers to user queries (the words/phrases entered into a search) usually through a list of relevant pages, which are ranked by perceived usefulness.

Popularity matters. Search engines’ results are based on the importance of a page, which is interpreted by its popularity. The more popular a page is, the more valuable its information is. Most Internet users know that the top results are usually the best results.

ryan-gosling-seo

So why is this important?

  • Search is the primary method of navigation for most Internet users
  • Search provides opportunities for organizations
  • To have empathy for your audience (know what they want and appeal to them)
  • Ranking of search results determines credibility
  • Top ranked searches get the most visibility and traffic

desperate google search


“Second is the first loser,” another quote told to me by professional soccer player Zach Scott. The top three search results get the most traffic. How do we become the top search results? Search engine optimization (SEO). What is SEO? Moz, (formerly known as SEOmoz) defines it as:

  • Search Engine Optimization: “improving and promoting a website in order to increase the number of visitors the site receives from search engines”

If you read my last post, “They want you, to want them – Inbound Marketing” you might have caught on that SEO and inbound marketing go hand in hand. Using search engine optimization increases a sites’ ability to be found, or searched, increasing its overall rank. Inbound marketing is attracting potential customers to your page through engaging content. A site can be searched, but not have good content, or a site can have good content, but not be found. They are peanut butter and jelly!

By adding keywords, or simply restructuring a website can make all the difference in showing up in a search. Keywords are essential and the most important for search. When search engines spiders crawl, they organize their findings based on keywords. For example, to find this awesome cat .gif, I searched “cute cat gifs” (originally looking for something cute, but this was way cooler) and the first link that resulted (believe it or not) was cutecatgifs.com!

skate-cat

Keywords are the “money makers” in search marketing, being able to produce high returns. Though keywords, one can learn about buying behaviors and motivations, which is important to compete in the market. This is also the basis of inbound marketing, getting the customer to find the company. Having an optimal page, with keywords, enables and facilitates users to find websites they potentially didn’t even know existed. (One should have only assumed a web page solely dedicated to cat gifs existed) Here are some keyword tips:

Where to put keywords:

  • Tag in title at least once
  • Prominently near the top of the page
  • 2-3 times in the body of the page
  • URL
  • Alt code of an image
  • Meta description of a tag

Important reminders when using keywords:

  • Relevant to content
  • Specificity = less competition
  • Attract the right audience

When using keywords, keep in mind the 3 main types of search queries. This will help understanding customers problems and help to provide them with answers:

  1. Transactional Queries (Do): making a purchase
  2. Informational Queries (Know): seeking information
  3. Navigation Queries (Go): seeking an online destination

Keywords gone wrong! Jonathan Strickland does a good job explaining black hat SEO techniques in his article “How Search Engine Optimization works,” which are something one should not participate in!

Black Hat SEO techniques:

  • Keyword stuffing: “altering search results by over using keywords on a page.” This can consist of inserting words that are not relevant to a pages’ content.(although this may sound like a good idea, it can hurt  your ranking, or attract the wrong people)
  • Invisible keywords (cloaking): inserting words that aren’t visible to web users, usually because the color of the text matches the background. But since spiders decipher content through HTML, they detect text even if people can’t see it.

blackhat-seo-spam

SEO companies track and analyze data in order to continually improve SEO strategies. Keeping track of rankings, referrals, links and keyword searches is how SEO is successful. Moz recommends the following metrics to track:

  1. Search engine share of referring visits
  2. Visits referred by specific search engines
  3. Visits referred by specific search engine teams and phrases
  4. Conversion rate by search query term/phrase
  5. Number of pages receiving at least one visit from search engines

Inbound marketing wouldn’t be possible without search engine marketing. SEO increases the chances for customers to find businesses. Increasing presence and accessibility on the Internet is a good thing. Although you may have implemented these strategies to your page, increasing rank takes time.

dwight clark seo

 

If you didn’t post it, it didn’t happen… #DigiMark2pt3 #FirstPost

MARI SETIJONO — born and raised in the greater Seattle area, I am grateful to call the Pacific Northwest my home. Currently a senior at Western Washington University, I am working on obtaining my Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration with a focus in marketing and a minor in communication. Can I stay in college forever? Just kidding, get me out of here… (just not back to my parents’ house)

This quarter I am enrolled in Digital Marketing, with Mark Staton, PhD. I am stoked to be taking this class; I have heard nothing but great things about it! Last year I had Staton as a professor for Principles of Marketing and he undoubtably was one of my favorite professors, which is also the primary reason why I wanted to take this class. His teaching style really appealed to my learning style, and with his use of case studies and examples he made everything applicable to “real life.”

In today’s and age, media is immensely integrated into our lives. To the point where “six out of every seven people in the world have Internet access,” according to Google’s Squared Online’s 2013 infographics on social media engagement. How dependent people, myself included, are on the Internet is almost frightening. “If you didn’t post it, it didn’t happen.” Hashtag, hashtag hashtag. People’s lives are exploited on the internet. Stalking people on the internet through social media is a daily occurring, nonchalant thing. What did you do for spring break? Oh wait, why did I ask? I already saw it all online.

facebook stalking gif
There are massive amounts of information that can be derived from Internet usage, and through analysis of web searches, key words, transactions, etcetera,  companies can learn or predict almost anything. For example, Target predicting pregnancies. Kind of creepy, huh? But brilliant! Which is also what makes this so interesting!

Because of this, I am really looking forward to learning more about digital marketing. More specifically, obtaining the technical skills, becoming Google Analytics Certified. This is also exciting because it was heavily talked about in Principles of Marketing.

With this rate of data analysis, look at what ordering pizza has the potential to be like!


Article: Knowledge and Skill Requirements for Marketing Jobs in the 21st Century

Through the analyzation of five different metropolitan areas, Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Seattle, this article differentiates skill and knowledge requirements for entry-, lower-, middle-, and upper-level marketing jobs. This deemed to be a very insightful article, because I and I’m sure many of my fellow classmates are nearing graduation.

An overall summary of the research findings were that advanced technical skills were a high requirement for all levels of jobs. It was interesting to learn that many of the skills necessary were not in the “marketing curriculum.” This also made me grateful for Western’s marketing program because I have learned about the importance of search engine optimization, pay-per-click and analytics — and am really hoping to expand that knowledge through this class. Marketing is not just advertisements, there is a lot more behind it. Where does market research come from? Analyzing data and behaviors.

This brings me back to the Target article. Through the use of analytics, they can predict consumers’ buying behaviors, and also analyze the company’s behaviors as well. With such information, marketers can distinguish purchase patterns and consumer’s purchase processes in order to predict future needs. It was very interesting to read that during pregnancy is the perfect time to try sway consumers out of their habits. You can learn almost anything about people through the analyzation of information. Having a technical skill set can really distinguish one in the job market.


Article: Forrester Interactive Marketing Forecast 2011 to 2016

Interactive marketing such as, social media, mobile and email marketing, online video, SEO (search engine optimization), and PPC (pay-per-click) are becoming the major player in advertising in comparison to traditional marketing tactics through mediums such as, television, direct mail, magazines, radio, newspapers and telemarketing. The article states that in 2016, it is predicted that $77 billion dollars will be spend on interactive marketing in the United States, which leads to be 35% of all advertisement spending.

This further shows how integrated different forms of media are in our lives. Referencing back to Squared Online’s infographics, an average of 5.2 hours are spend on social media globally. I’m also in a Communication Media Studies class, and we had an ice breaker to get to know the rest of class, by asking each other about our media involvement. Not a single person in the classroom grew up without a TV, and not one person didn’t have any social media platform. The majority of the class consumed more than three hours of social media per day.

I really enjoyed the statistics this article provided. It was dense with information, but the numbers and graphs really put the importance of interactive marketing into perspective. The importance of interactive marketing for a business is crucial. Companies need to have an online presence.

It is interesting to think how much goes into a good website, or good ads. When using Google, people generally don’t think about how the top search results get there, but most web-surfers would agree that the top results are always the cream of the crop. And then you learn that it was all on purpose, it was planned. It is a strategy. Either someone paid for the the ranking, or added some special words into their website for it to show up more. It’s almost as if it’s a crazy mind game. (Marketing is so cool)

google search rank meme


Article: State of Digital Marketing Talent

The gist of this article under my interpretation was basically “You are what you eat.” The  marketing industry is what it is made up of. Listed I have summarized the seven main findings of digital marketing talent discussed through this article in my own words:

1. There’s a digital marketing talent gap – Employee’s do not live up to employer’s expectations in all skill areas.

2. Employees are lacking necessary skills – Technical skills are important skills to have in the Marketing field. More specifically, knowledge of analytics, mobile marketing, and  marketing automation are needed.

3. It’s about who you know – With a large talent gap, it is deemed a hard task to differentiate between employee candidates. References will get you jobs.

4. Inadequate employee training leads to miss opportunities – Without established programs, organizations investments through their employees don’t result with substantial returns or benefits.

5. Inconsistency throughout an organization hinders the business as a whole – Because there are no industry-wide standards, businesses need to be clear and consistent through their expectations and requirements for employees, and their assessment criteria on these expectation and requirements. There needs to be a mutual understanding on clear and concise goals.

6. Have a good attitude – You get what you earn. Not everything is handed to you, and if you work hard, and are open minded it will eventually (hopefully) pay off.

7. Digital education programs need to be implemented for marketing students – the talent gap needs to bridged. What is taught in school should be applicable to real life.

After reading this article, I was sure happy I am enrolled in Western’s Marketing program! College is increasingly getting more expensive, with the goal of obtaining knowledge and skills that will (or at least should) help me in life. The main point of this article was that there is inadequate talent. Whether it be graduate students who didn’t learn the skills, or the organization isn’t teaching the skills,  there are skills lacking.

To tie all three articles together, digital marketing is the new “thing.” And more importantly the technical skills that contribute to digital marketing are crucial for the industry.

ron burgandy meme