Welcome to another Exposure Ninja Digital Marketing Roundup. As we pass the halfway point of the month, we’ve discovered a host of tips, tricks and new tools to help you further smash your digital marketing campaigns.
In this week’s Round-up we’ve learned:
- How to secure brand backlinks when they’re mysteriously left out
- Google has introduced useful new features to help create even better Google Ads campaigns
- You can now watch all of your guilty pleasures without leaving a trace, thanks to YouTube’s Incognito mode
- People are opening more and more emails (great news for Email Marketing Ninjas!)
Jump to your favourite marketing subject:
How to Get That Brand Backlink When the Publisher Forgets to Add It
No outreach campaign results in 100% perfect article placement. The most common problem for a Content Marketing Ninja is that the article is published without a link to the client. This can happen for a number of reasons, such as:
- The person copying and pasting the content didn’t include the link, because they forgot
- The editor of the domain removed the external links as they didn’t feel they added to the piece
- The editor removed the external links as they think they’ll lose PageRank (yeah, that’s really not a thing any more)
Getting the link added back in is not impossible, however. It just takes a little bit of additional effort to implement proven techniques.
Fortunately, Gisele Navarro of NeoMam Studios has put together an easy to follow and example-rich guide, explaining how to use a touch of relationship-building to have brand mentions and backlinks added to your placed content.
Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO)
UK Hot Weather Leads to Burst of Online Shopping
If you’re not in the UK right now then you may not be aware of the bizarrely-long hot weather spell we’ve been having, leading to a change in the wording of the hymn “Jerusalem” from “…green and pleasant land” to “brown grass and burnt pink people.”
If you’re an eCommerce owner, this has been an unexpected delight for weekly sales, which is becoming more frequent every year as more shoppers opt to order from their sweltering living rooms over venturing outside.
What this means for eCommerce managers and owners is an increase in sales, but how can we ensure that we can cope with the sudden increases and not run out of stock?
The key is a mixture of preparation and well-oiled supply networks.
As these changes in weather become more frequent every year, it’s increasingly wise to work on ensuring that every part of the sales funnel — covering keyword and content creation, category optimisation and new category introduction, and social media sharing — looks at how the trends of searchers change over time.
Accomplishing this can be done in two ways:
- Analyse keyword data year-on-year and spot where phrases are being searched for earlier or later than the normal seasons may suggest
- Analyse keyword trend data and social sharing on a weekly basis (having a dedicated social media manager is mandatory for this to succeed) to spot increases in phrase usage
Should you notice “shorts” being searched for more in April than in June one year after the next, prepping your stock of shorts and your content calendar around shorts promotion will ensure your prospects will find your content first.
If there’s a sudden increase in social shares about “pink gold swimsuits” and you notice it before your competitors do, then there’s every chance that you can get the order to the suppliers first, while your content team are busy putting together inspiring copy and adverts that will capitalise on the weather-based trend.
Google Introduce Several New Features (inc. Beta releases)
The Google Ads team just can’t stop pushing out new tools!
Following on from the recent announcement that it has unified some of its platforms and changed Google AdWords to the more simple Google Ads, Google has announced the public and beta release of a number of useful features, including:
- Responsive Search Ads (auto-generated ads based on a pool of headlines and descriptions you preset)
- Mobile Speed Score (on a 10-point scale)
- Cross-device Reporting, (covered in Google’s help docs)
For more details on the list of improvements and feature releases, check out the full round-up by WordStream.
How To Get a 10/10 Quality Score in Google Ads
The higher your Quality Score, the better your ads will perform. But how can we achieve the perfect score?
In its latest blog post, Ayima showcases five tips for optimising your score, including the importance of being granular with your campaign arrangements, utilising ad extensions to make your adverts more useful to searchers, and the necessity of using A/B page variation testing.
For even deeper insight on optimising the Quality Score of your ads, you may also find the “Ultimate Guide to Google Ads Quality Score,” by PPC Hero, to be highly useful.
It’s also safe to presume that Google may apply a similar Quality Score to Organic Results (although in a more complex fashion), so keep the optimisation tasks you’re setting in mind when working to optimise pages which aren’t receiving Ads traffic.
Integrate Your Facebook and Google Ads
Asi Dayan of CrazyLister put together a short and sensible blog post on how to integrate your Facebook Ads and Google Ads on the WordStream blog last week. In it, he offered some useful tips on how to get the most out of your independently-run advertising campaigns.
Our Paid Social and Paid Search Ninjas are frequently using their extensive expertise to improve advertising campaigns in the very same way. If you’d like a review of your current advertising campaign, please do get in touch.
How to Make Your Ads Stand out in Directory-Dominated Search Results
Directory websites are often some of the hardest competitors to face in both the SEO and Ads space, especially when some of the directories are big brands with domains which are decades old. But, with a little expertise, there’s some hope.
As guest writer Pauline Jakober explains on Search Engine Journal, there are changes you can make and extensions you can use to improve an ad, allowing it to stand out against the under-optimised and less-specific directory competition.
15 Quick Solution Selling Tips to Close More Sales
Marc Wayshak has brought successful sales improvements to businesses as a Sales Strategist for many years, so when Marc shares his tips and methods of increasing sales, we all sit up and pay attention.
In one of his most recent posts, entitled “15 Quick Solution Selling Tips to Close More Sales,” Marc showcases several tips which will help Sales Specialists of all experience levels. The things he covers include:
- How your level of excitement may be having the opposite effect than your intention
- The need to know not only a prospect’s business dilemma, but also how that dilemma affects them personally
- The importance of focusing on only the most crucial issues
- How sales pitches should be conversations, not “I talk, you listen” events
- Why speaking less can deliver more
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Google Launches Speed Update on July 9th
A speed-based update to Google’s algorithm was pushed live on Monday, July 9th (as covered by Search Engine Land).
News of this update was released by Google back in January, so (hopefully) most websites have already taken the change into consideration while optimising loading times, especially as page load times contribute not only to ranking success (nobody likes a slow website, right?!), but to conversion rate success too.
Although this speed change “only affects the slowest sites,” it’s worth reviewing the most important pages of your website to make sure they’re as speedy as possible using the following tools:
Voice Search Devices Installed in Homes Doubles in 2017
According to the digital market analysis company Canalys, the number of voice search-enabled technology devices installed in homes is expected to more than double in 2018 to over 100 million units worldwide.
Amazon’s Alexa assistant currently occupies the most homes, but is losing market share to Google’s own Google Assistant, with the two expected to each share 34% of the market by the end of this year.
The United States has the most units inside of homes, with 75% of all worldwide installs taking place within North American homes (USA = 72%, Canada = 3%).
What this signals is a further need for companies to ensure that the data available via their websites is fully prepared for the continual increase in voice search dependence that this trend will deliver.
Optimising your website for voice search need not be overly complicated, but the better optimised it is, the easier it will be for voice search assistants to use.
To optimise your website, we recommend reviewing and optimising the following basics:
- How well written your content is
- How well it answers the user’s query
- How easy it is to access (easily accessible via mobile, responsive design, fast load times, etc.)
- How easy the page data can be interpreted by search engine crawlers, like Googlebot (i.e., are you using Structured Data?
For more details on how to prepare your website for voice search, check the following articles:
- The Definitive Guide to Voice Search Optimisation
- We Analyzed 10,000 Google Home Results. Here’s What We Learned About Voice Search SEO
Thanks to Chris O’Brien of VentureBeat for bringing this to our attention.
What’s The Difference Between Image Alt Text, Title Text, and File Names?
The answer is a lot, especially from an SEO perspective.
For many small and medium-sized business owners, the task of optimising an image on their website is usually at the back of their minds and the bottom of their priority list. When trying to run a business and build an online presence, it’s easy to spend the little time you have on the copy and headlines — oh, and the metadata that everyone keeps talking about, and, oh yeah, shouldn’t you get some backlinks too?
But image optimisation is just as important as everything else. Not only does it give Google an additional helping hand in its effort to understand what your website is about, but, more importantly, it helps real human visitors understand what your website is about too.
Visually-impaired users of the internet rely upon the “background” information of an image — which we frequently don’t think too much about — to explain to them what the content of the image is, through the use of a screen reader or magnifier.
in 2016, the UK Government’s Digital Team found that 30% of visually-impaired users surveyed used a screen magnifier, while 29% used a screen reader. Between the two groups, the most frequently used tool to assist users was ZoomText.
With 253 million people living with visual impairment across the world, it’s more important than ever that we make the internet as easy to browse as possible. Optimising image title text, image alt text and file names is a big part of accomplishing that.
So what’s the difference between them? You’ll have to read the article to find out.
Social Media / Influencer Marketing
11 of the Best Influencer Marketing Campaigns
Our Influencer Marketing Ninjas are continually building great campaigns, but, while they have great ideas on the types of influencers to work with and the best way to create a successful campaign with them, just like any artist, they regularly look at others around them for further inspiration.
This article by Search Engine People, delves into some great influencer campaigns by brilliant brands, including campaigns by Mercedes Benz and Walmart, and the incredibly successful and timely footballer-focused Wish campaign, which has been running throughout the 2018 World Cup and features superstar footballers including Gareth Bale and Paul Pogba.
To get inspired, check out the post linked above.
Other Notable Mentions
2.84% Increase in Email Opens in 2017
In the annual Email Benchmarking Report for 2018, the DMA found that there was a notable increase in the open rate of Business-to-Consumer (B2C) and Business-to-Business (B2B) emails.
The study, sponsored by Dotmailer, gives further detail in its table outlining the percentage of users who are not only opening emails, but are also engaging with the content within them (including link clicks), as well as the frequency in which they are re-opening them.
The study found that B2C emails were opened more than those from B2B companies. This is great news for the many businesses which have put a lot of work into embracing email marketing as part of their inbound and outbound marketing strategy. However, B2B emails were approximately twice as likely to be clicked by users.
Not using email marketing yet? Get started by reading the brilliant “Email Marketing Guide for Small Businesses” by our friends at Infusionsoft.
Latest YouTube Android App Release Adds ‘Incognito Mode’
Want to watch Love Island highlights without leaving a trace on your YouTube account?
Watching reruns of 90’s children’s favourite Knightmare and don’t want others to notice your obsession?
YouTube has provided the answer.
According to 9to5google.com, an Incognito Mode — similar to the same mode found in Google Chrome — was released in the latest version of the YouTube for Android app.
Say goodbye to the fears of lending your phone to your partner, only for them to find your viewing history littered with Eurovision highlights and Balkan Europop Dance chunes.
Keep Your WordPress Install and Plugins Hack Free
The WordPress development team has since released an updated fix (they’re actually really good at staying on top of urgent fixes), BUT it does require you to manually update your WordPress install.
Staying on top of your website’s WordPress and plugin updates will help to keep your website safe from a hack, which could be costly to your business in terms of both professional reputation and how much it’ll cost for your developer to fix the site.
To stay on top of everything, we highly recommend this Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly, and Yearly WordPress Maintenance Checklist.