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May 18, 2016

Tim Ash Presents #ConvCon: Ending the War between Branding and Direct Response

You’re tuned in to Conversion Conference and the opening keynote by Tim Ash, founder of SiteTuners, author of Landing Page Optimization, and organizer of this conference. Tim Ash is on stage to present a brand new keynote, and a topic he is very interested in. Tim asks how many in the crowd are direct response marketers? How many are in the branding and creative side – to the latter question, not as many people raise their hands. Tim’s going to bring the DR and branding worlds together.

Right now there’s a war going on between DR and branding. Here’s his agenda:

  • Introduce the combatants.
  • Understand branding better.
  • Bring both sides together.

Read Ending the War between Branding and Direct Response.




May 12, 2016

Why 45% of Social Media Strategists Say You Need Brand Advocates in Your Ranks

Both loyal and enthusiastic, a brand advocate is someone who is passionate about a particular brand and is excited to tell her friends about its products or services — not because she has anything to gain, but because she truly believes her friends have everything to gain. Brand advocacy awareness takes advantage of those who champion a brand online, which can be a powerful part of a business’s overall digital marketing efforts.

How do you create a brand advocate?

1. By having a truly useful, high-quality product or service.
2. By having customer service that goes above and beyond.

The ideal brand advocate will then go forth and proclaim their love for you, not only through word of mouth, but also on social media! When we work with our content and social media services clients, we are always looking for ways to create and cultivate brand advocacy. Did you know 45 percent of social strategists report that developing an employee brand advocacy program is a top priority?

Read on for why you need employee brand advocacy in your social media strategy.




May 5, 2016

Google’s Report on SEO Conduct & Webspam: Ethical SEO Help for Businesses

Referee

Your business is on the field of one of the most competitive games of all: organic search rankings. If you play by the rules, you have a chance of making your website visible to searchers and winning site visitors. If you don’t follow the rules, you have no chance of scoring those goals if there’s a referee on the field.

Search engines play the role of referee in the search engine optimization game. For business owners, that means ethical SEO conduct pays off.

This week Google published a report titled “How we fought webspam in 2015” chronicling what they discovered and accomplished last year. This latest report from Google is important for online businesses to be aware of because it points to trends in webspam and identifies red-flag digital marketing tactics to avoid.

Read more of “Google’s Report on SEO Conduct & Webspam: Ethical SEO Help for Businesses




April 28, 2016

Monitoring Social Media Traffic: Tricks, Tips and Tools

#SEOchat is a weekly Twitter chat where in-the-know digital marketers across the country gather to compare notes. Last week we hosted the chat and the hot topic was monitoring social traffic. We discussed KPIs, paid and free tools. We also took on harder questions, like how to leverage the data pull from monitoring social traffic and how to prove ROI using social monitoring reports. Here’s what we learned!




April 22, 2016

Google’s Outbound Link Penalties: How to React without Overreacting

padlocked gate - stay calm message

Penalties for links usually focus on the inbound kind. So Google’s recent spate of manual actions against websites for having “unnatural artificial, deceptive, or manipulative outbound links” was a surprise to many.

This time, the search engine targeted sites linking out because the links looked like an attempt to boost the destination sites’ rankings in search results. Google took action by devaluing all of the linking site’s links as untrustworthy.

But there were warning signs from Google that penalties loomed …

In this post by our VP of organic search operations and former search engine rep Duane Forrester, you’ll find out:

  • What Google posted a few weeks before the penalties came down.
  • How not to overreact to the Google penalties
  • What to do to clean up links in your product reviews and other pages, and
  • What this move might foretell

Click to read the article.




April 15, 2016

Digital Marketing Keynotes from Google, Microsoft, LinkedIn & Disney #SEJSummit

SEJ Summit SM 1

Search Engine Journal hosted an exclusive event limited to 150 digital marketers. The second annual SEJ Summit featured eight industry leaders from companies including Google, Microsoft, LinkedIn and Disney.

Several key themes that emerged from the exclusive day-long event in Santa Monica:

  • Think of your users as humans. You’re not an SEO optimizing for a user, but a person optimizing for another human.
  • We live in a multiscreen world. You never know where someone will be interacting with your content. #ResponsiveDesign
  • Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) is gaining momentum and regardless of your industry you need to be ready to implement.

Read the full report!




April 7, 2016

PPC AMA: Paid Search Ask Me Anything — An Hour of Q&A with David Szetela

PPC AMA with David Szetela

Last Thursday on Reddit, David Szetela offered an AMA to the r/PPC community. An AMA, or “Ask Me Anything,” is just that — an anything goes Q&A with someone of some interest, whether a celebrity, an expert, or someone with a unique role or experience set. David, our VP of Search Marketing Operations and the director of our PPC services, kept it short and sweet, opening the floor to questions for an hour.

Then we talked about highlights on our podcast SEM Synergy this week. Give it a listen or read a transcript-recap here. As David described, it was a conversation marked by diverse PPC topics. Read the question and answers in Paid Search Ask Me Anything — An Hour of Q&A with David Szetela.




March 31, 2016

15 Social Media Manager Interview Questions

Social Media Manager Job Description Social Media Manager Interview Questions

If you’ve ever tried to hire a social media manager for your business, you might have experienced the challenge of trying to separate the applicants interested in playing on Facebook and Twitter all day without any battle-tested experience building a brand and encouraging engagement.

If you want to hire a social media manager but want some guidance on vetting candidates, you’ve come to the right place. This article will guide you through our criteria and interview questions you need to ask!




March 25, 2016

Page Speed Issues Overview for SEO

SEO Overcoming Page Speed Issues

You probably know that page speed is a search engine ranking factor. (Hello, Google AMP initiative?) Not only will the users of your site have a better experience, but a faster loading page gets plus points when Google or Bing are ranking it. So SEOs use tools that help them find ways to optimize the page load time, like GTMetrix, Google PageSpeed Insights and YSlow.

Of course, there’s always that one SEO analyst who wants to know why the recommendations are made to defer JavaScript parsing, reduce cookie size, or leverage browser caching.

And actually, now that you mention it, there is value in taking a step back and describing the process of page loading, whether by a browser or a search engine, and what the page speed improvement recommendations address. Read “Page Speed Issues Overview for SEO.”




March 17, 2016

Mobile Friendly SEO Ranking Boost Gets Boosted in May

mobile seo ranking boost may 2016

Generally speaking, Google’s April 2015 mobile-friendly algorithm update (dubbed “Mobilegeddon” by the SEO industry) was sort of a bust. Months of talk about an organic ranking boost to mobile-friendly, aka mobile SEO compliant, websites turned out to be mostly hype.

While it did spur many sites to make their sites better for smartphone users, there was not a lot of movement across mobile search engine results pages, especially at the top of SERPs. And the mobile-friendly “boost” was ultimately implemented as a tiebreaker among sites that were deemed to have equal ranking strength — a condition that rarely occurs.

Another mobile ranking boost announcement has just come out of Google. The announcement says that they will be increasing the effect of the mobile friendly ranking signal in May of this year.

Read more about the coming change …




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