Advertising Age had an interesting story that was brought to my attention by a colleague, where a Procter & Gamble exec speculates that social media is already changing the world of market research. It's an interesting story, mostly because of who is quoted. When a company with the marketing chops of P&G says something, you've got news. But the news is actually much bigger than what you are reading in Ad Age. So, yes, the world is changing, but in an even bigger way than we think. Social media is not able to replace all uses for market research today, and won't for many years, in my opinion. But I work with clients every day who use social media for market research. [Full disclosure: I serve as a senior strategist for Converseon, a leader in social media listening platforms.] In fact, one of the largest companies I know has worked on social media for several years, led by its market intelligence team.Not only is social media listening replacing some traditional market research … [Read more...] about Will social media listening replace market research?
How companies use market research
Marketing technology (martech) stacks are all the buzz right now, especially following the Stackie awards given out at the MarTech Conference recently. There were some excellent visualizations of what technologies companies use and how they categorize them within different stages of their funnel. To me, this is all very fascinating. I love checking out what other companies are using and discovering new tech solutions. But these visualizations are missing something: how do they specifically use it all? We need some good how-to content around using martech stacks. Originally, I had wanted to outline some step-by-step use cases for my martech stack(s), but I realized that I could write a book on it. Instead, I’m going to focus on how I use my martech stack to manage my SEO efforts. I look at SEO like a carousel: It’s constantly going round and round — continuous, unending efforts are needed to compete in new topics or keywords and to keep up with changes in the way … [Read more...] about How I use my marketing technology stack (SEO edition)
If you have a love/hate relationship with buyer personas, you’re not alone. According to a 2016 survey by Customer Think, 72 percent of marketers are familiar with these personas, and 60 percent have created their first persona within the last two years. Unfortunately, lots of search marketers are confused about how to use their personas or are frustrated that their personas are not producing the hoped-for results. For this reason, buyer personas have been criticized as an exercise which, although well-intentioned, can distract marketers from actually producing meaningful deliverables. So, let’s get practical. A typical buyer persona contains a lot of “touchy-feely” stuff: the interests, values, behaviors and pain points that motivate a particular market niche, all wrapped up in a cutesy name and a stock photo picture to match. That’s nice, but it often isn’t all that useful when it comes to marketing metrics like cost per click (CPC) or return on … [Read more...] about How to use your buyer personas to build your 2017 search marketing budget
Would you hire your traditional printer to make marketing and advertising decisions for your company? Then why would you hire a technology company for web marketing or web advertising? In the defense of many businesses, they do hear the same words coming from both the marketer and the technology company. Both companies use the words “SEO”, “optimization”, “paid search”, and many other terms, which on the surface sound the same. Thus, a business that doesn’t understand the digital medium would not know there is a difference between these two types of companies. Evolution of Disciplines on the Web If I think back 20 years ago when we first put a website together using HTML 0.0 we could bold text, change colors, make text flash and use an animated gif for a mailbox that opened and closed. It was all pretty exciting stuff, at the time. Since then the disciplines have evolved and matured to the point where there are: Technology companies that know … [Read more...] about Is your SEO Company A Marketer or a Technology Company?
If you think the lowly keyword is dead, think again. Good research can help a business position itself with the the right content to engage the audience at different points of the consumer purchase journey. Have you experienced one or more of these problems with your SEO and PPC ads? Your pages are ranking well, even at number one in the search results, but they are not getting any clicks Your ads are getting a lot of impressions, but they are not getting any clicks Your pages in organic search results and ads are both getting a lot of clicks, but just not converting If you have, it is likely that there is disconnect among keywords, ads, page description and landing page content. Why does disconnect happen? In many cases, a disconnect is caused by these reasons: Selected target keywords based on search volume (SEO & ads) Used the same ad copy (ads) Used the same landing page (ads) Didn’t check which page is ranking for a keyword (SEO) Didn’t check the organic … [Read more...] about How to use purchase intent for more effective keyword search