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Tag: Marketing

8 Key PPC Marketing Metrics to track in 2021

September 3, 2021 No Comments

Quality PPC campaigns can be very effective. Learn how to tailor them to your target audience to ensure customer satisfaction with these vital metrics.

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Former Snap employees raise $9M for Trust, emerging from beta to level marketing playing field

August 11, 2021 No Comments

Trust wants to give smaller businesses the same advantages that large enterprises have when marketing on digital and social media platforms. It came out of beta with $ 9 million in seed funding from Lerer Hippeau, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Upfront Ventures and Upper90.

The Los Angeles-based company was started in 2019 by a group of five Snap alums working in various roles within Snap’s revenue product strategy business. They were building tools for businesses to fund success with digital marketing, but kept hearing from customers about the advantage big advertisers had over smaller ones — the ability to receive good payment terms, credit lines, as well as data and advice.

Aiming to flip the script on that, the group created Trust, which is a card and business community to help digital businesses navigate the ever-changing pricing models to market online, receive the same incentives larger advertisers get and make the best decision of where their marketing dollars will reach the furthest.

Trust dashboard

Trust does this in a few ways: Its card, built in partnership with Stripe, enables businesses to increase their buying power by up to 20 times and have 45 days to make payments on their marketing investments, CEO James Borow told TechCrunch. Then as part of its community, companies share knowledge of marketing buys and data insights typically reserved for larger advertisers. Users even receive news via their dashboard around their specific marketing strategy, he added.

“The ad platforms are a wall of gardens, and most people don’t know what is going on inside, so our customers work together to see what is going on,” Borow said.

The growth of e-commerce is pushing more digital marketing investments, providing opportunity for Trust to be a huge business, Borow said. E-commerce sales in the U.S. grew by 39% in the first quarter, while digital advertising spend is forecasted to increase 25% this year to $ 191 billion. Meanwhile, Google, Facebook, Snapchat and Twitter all recently reported rapid growth in their year-over-year advertising revenues, Borow said.

The new funding will go toward increasing the company’s headcount.

“We have active customers on the platform, so we wanted to ramp up hiring as soon as we went into general release,” he added. “We are leaving beta with 25 businesses and a few hundred on our waitlist.”

That list will soon grow. In addition to the funding round, Trust announced a strategic partnership with social shopping e-commerce platform Verishop. The company’s 3,500 merchants will receive priority access to the Trust card and community, Borow said.

Andrea Hippeau, partner at Lerer Hippeau, said she knew Borow from being an investor in his previous advertising company Shift, which was acquired by Brand Networks in 2015.

When Borow contacted Lerer about Trust, Hippeau said this was the kind of offering that would be applicable to the firm’s portfolio, which has many direct-to-consumer brands, and knew marketing was a huge pain point for them.

“Digital marketing is important to all brands, but it is also a black box that you put marketing dollars into, but don’t know what you get,” she said. “We hear this across our portfolio — they spend a lot of money on ad platforms, yet are treated like mom-and-pop companies in terms of credit. When in reality Casper is outspending other companies by five times. Trust understands how important marketing dollars are and gives them terms that are financially better.”

 


Enterprise – TechCrunch


Now is the best time to stitch your search marketing loopholes before 2022

August 10, 2021 No Comments

30-second summary:

  • Confused users don’t spend money
  • Your search marketing needs to thread in your brand’s messaging, targeting, design, and overall experience to ensure trust, clarity, and eventual sales
  • SEO pioneer, serial entrepreneur, and best selling author, Kris Jones helps you weave a tight SEO and search marketing strategy before 2022 ushers in

If you spend enough time in the digital marketing space, even if you focus on just one area of it, you’ll eventually catch wind of the intersection of SEO, paid media, web design, and link building. There’s no avoiding it since all these areas run together to ideally form a strong online presence for a business. Within that context, if you’ve ever been the one to devise a digital strategy for yourself or your clients, you’re probably familiar with the types of market niches that would push a business to focus more on SEO or paid search marketing.

SEO is obviously a fantastic tool for just about anyone, but don’t discount the power of paid media. Each has its pros and cons, and when done the right way, neither is going to hurt you.

What will hurt you, however, is making mistakes in your efforts and then letting them go for a long time. Weak points in your SEO and paid media can be tricky things. They can harm your digital presence in the long term and yet be difficult even to detect unless you really know what you’re doing.

With the home stretch of 2021 right around the corner, now is the best time to stitch up those holes in your search marketing for 2022. Here are four tips for cleaning up your SEO and paid media marketing.

1. Stop writing for keywords over topics

SEOs know the old story, but here it is again for anyone who doesn’t. Ten to twenty years ago, it was a popular practice to keyword-stuff on web pages. That just meant overusing a certain keyword on a page in an attempt to get Google to rank the page more highly.

In 2021, we know this is a bad practice because it doesn’t help users to answer their questions. What answers questions for online users today is content that discusses popular topics rather than just keyword-spamming.

You can use popular topic-research tools such as BuzzSumo, Answer the Public, or Semrush to find topics relevant to your desired industry niche. Then, do your own research to generate content that’s useful. Always think of the user first.

Keywords still have their place, though. Google needs to match up queries with content, and the content that makes the smartest, most useful, and natural use of keywords will tend to perform better. Content needs to have keywords in its headings and also use naturally within the body. But don’t think that you need to overuse keywords or focus your content completely around the keywords. Instead, determine the intent of the keywords and align that with your topic research to create killer content that ranks.

2. Don’t abandon paid media message consistency

When your search marketing includes paid media, too, you have a whole other set of guidelines to follow. Again, everything you do should be with users in mind. Put yourself in their place. How would you respond to this ad if you saw it?

Then, click through to the landing page to make sure everything still makes sense. The thing is, here is where PPC specialists can fail if they aren’t careful.

With paid media, you’re using ads to get people to do things. That’s what you have available: words and images on little square ads on web pages or paid search results on the SERPs.

Sounds straightforward, right? As long as you do your research and get the ads’ messaging correct, you should be golden.

Except you can go way wrong if your messaging isn’t consistent across the entire paid search journey. Your landing pages need to contain the same type of messaging as your ads. They need to reference the information users saw when they first clicked the ad.

That shows continuity across your paid campaigns. Without that continuity, without landing pages that reference offers or claims made in ads, users will be confused. They’ll wonder if they clicked the wrong ad or got taken to the wrong website.

And confused users don’t spend money.

Think about it this way: it’s been estimated that it takes between five and seven impressions before one user remembers a brand. Five to seven! It can be challenging enough to reach those numbers but imagine if you tried to get there without brand consistency. You’d be setting yourself up for failure, plain and simple.

The solution is once again to think like a user. Go through all the elements of a paid search user’s journey. If the messaging and branding flow logically and actually make sense, you may have a winning campaign on your hands.

3. Don’t ignore poor site UX

I said at the outset that the different areas of digital marketing all have the potential to intersect and flow together. Here is where SEO and web design meet up: website UX.

SEOs can spend all day researching keywords, writing content, optimizing meta tags, and building backlinks, but users probably aren’t going to do what you want if your website has a terrible layout and design, not to mention if it isn’t optimized for the mobile experience.

But don’t just listen to me – read the numbers. According to Intechnic, 67 percent of online users say that a badly designed website negatively affects their impressions of a brand. That is a huge figure, to put it mildly.

When Google’s spiders crawl a site, they do so logically, as a human would. That means the main navigation needs to set out the content your site has and be clear about where users can go to find certain information.

Now, what qualifies as a “good” layout? It’s simple when you think about it, and yet so many websites struggle to do it. The main navigation needs to show users all the vital areas of a site. Whatever business you’re in, your nav should show your main services first, followed by a blog if you have one (you should), an “about us” section, and a contact tab.

That setup right there covers all the main points that you’ll need to keep users engaged. Now, how everything else breaks down from there is up to you, but again, keep it logical. Your main services tab should have a submenu of all your main services, your locations tab can break down to show your different business locations, and so on.

Also, you absolutely cannot forget accessibility when you’re talking about website UX today. Accessibility, of course, is the capability of any piece of website content to be consumed and understood by people with a range of physical or mental disabilities. Not only is this simply a good business practice, but it’s also just inclusive and courteous.

Website accessibility includes considerations such as making content available to the visually and hearing impaired, ensuring your web pages are navigable with a keyboard only instead of just with a mouse, and choosing colors that don’t clash so color-blind people have no trouble reading your content.

Makes sense, right?

It’s important that it does make sense because if neither human users nor Google can understand how to navigate your website, you probably won’t rank for your desired keywords.

4. Don’t set and forget PPC

If you’re a business owner and are doing your own digital marketing, or if you employ one (possibly overworked) specialist to do it for you, it can be more than a little tempting to engage in the “set it and forget it” mindset.

Small to medium-sized businesses have so much to do just running themselves that putting sufficient effort into digital marketing can seem like too much of a stretch.

You may think that you’ve come up with a pretty effective PPC ad campaign that contains all the right visuals and messaging and hits all the right audience marks. And maybe you have, for now.

But you can’t set and forget anything in PPC or digital marketing more generally. Trends change, markets shift, consumers move on. You have to check in on your ads’ performance over time to see if you’ve recently fallen flat. Because if you have, then you’re wasting a lot of effort maintaining ads that aren’t converting.

Instead of letting things go like this – put the time into analyzing your ads’ performance, particularly in the time immediately following the start of the campaign. You want to ensure things are running as you predicted and tweak them if they aren’t.

While you’re at it, set aside some time to research how you can optimize your PPC campaigns’ resource consumption. The best campaigns are obviously the most efficiently performing ones, and so how can you do better?

Try reworking your ad copy. It sounds simple, but as you know, more relevant ad copy drives click-through rates and Quality Scores. And high-quality scores reduce your cost per click and cost per conversion.

Another money-worthy avenue you can take to hone in on your ads’ efficiency is to use dayparting and geolocation together. Dayparting will schedule your ads to appear at certain times of day, while geolocation will show your ads only in certain places.

This is particularly useful for local businesses that have brick-and-mortar locations and want to get customers through the doors.

This takes plenty of audience research to get it right, but it’s a smart and common-sense way to optimize the resources you’re using on your PPC ads.

A stale PPC campaign has the potential to be one of your biggest search marketing holes in 2022, so don’t wait on this one.

Jump on your 2022 fixes now

There truly is no time like the present for fixing your search marketing loopholes. Any mistake that’s out there for any length of time is probably going to hurt you. But with the second half of 2021 already here, lots of businesses are setting their sights on 2022.

Become one of them. Follow these pointers to get ahead in your search marketing efforts, and it could make all the difference.

Kris Jones is the founder and former CEO of digital marketing and affiliate network Pepperjam, which he sold to eBay Enterprises in 2009. Most recently Kris founded SEO services and software company LSEO.com and has previously invested in numerous successful technology companies. Kris is an experienced public speaker and is the author of one of the best-selling SEO books of all time called, ‘Search-Engine Optimization – Your Visual Blueprint to Effective Internet Marketing’, which has sold nearly 100,000 copies.

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The post Now is the best time to stitch your search marketing loopholes before 2022 appeared first on Search Engine Watch.

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4 Versatile Conversion Rate Optimization Strategies to Supercharge Your Marketing Strategy

August 4, 2021 No Comments

When trying to increase conversions, it’s not enough to just make visually appealing content. There are many marketing strategies you can use to your advantage.

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Six content ideas to supercharge your marketing in 2021

July 29, 2021 No Comments

30-second summary:

  • Keyword research is at the heart of understanding where your business stands and what your end-users expect
  • Surveying or monitoring your analytics is a great way of listening to your customers or readers for effective content ideas
  • Seasonality is a great way to find fresh content ideas by finding angles where your primary topic overlaps with seasonal interests
  • Collaborate and meet real people – use every opportunity (events, meetups, live sessions) to talk to people and listen to what they’d be interested in consuming
  • Use “question research” to understand the existing information gaps in the market
  • Re-package your old, better-performing content into new (updated) assets

If you feel like everything has already been written and you have no idea what else you can write about, here are six content ideas for you that help you come up with valuable and engaging content this year:

1. Use new keyword research tools

Keyword research is not just for SEO! They can give you in-depth insight into your audience’s interests, questions, and struggles. Research and address them in your content.

The key is to try a new tool from time to time. Why? Each tool uses a different data source or a different output or a different way to organize those keywords. Any of these will be enough to give you lots of content ideas.

Luckily, we have quite a few tools to choose from.

Kparser

This tool will give you pretty much everything you need to create a good topic list. Or at least point you in the right direction. Look at the left-hand channel to find popular concepts around your main topic and build your content around those!

Content ideas - keyword research toolsSource: Screenshot by the author

Kparser offers a premium version for $ 69 a month but I’ve always been using its free version which is great!

KeywordTool.io

KeywordTool.io allows access to lots of data sources, including Google, Youtube, Amazon, Instagram, and Twitter.

Amazon keywords - content ideas for marketing(Content ideas sourced from Amazon)

Source: Screenshot made by the author

The tool will give you lots of ideas for free but to see each keyword analysis, you need to upgrade to one of the listed plans.

Answer the Public

This one you may not have heard of. It features a man called ‘The Seeker’, who impatiently awaits your questions. You put in keywords or phrases, he suggests some interesting topics.

Apart from being a great keyword research tool, this one is also great for question research (see my #5 tip on the list!) Using different ways to group and organize your keyword lists will likely uncover more ideas. These grouping techniques include keyword clustering and semantic research.

Answer the PublicSource: Screenshot by the author

Answer the Public is freemium and comes at $ 79/month minimum if you pay for a year, but frankly I’ve never had to upgrade as the free version is simply awesome!

2. Turn to your actual customers for ideas

You know who you really need to listen to. Correct, your current and future customers. You want your content to make a difference for your bottom line, not just bring your word out there, no matter if anyone is there listening or not.

You don’t just want to be heard, you want to be heard by your target audience.

You can even gamify that process by building up your surveys with visualization tools, here are some extra tips on that.

You can offer a good mix of generic questions (like, ask about their lifestyle) which would help you build up your customers’ personas and target them better. Then come your brand-specific questions:

  • “What questions did you have when browsing our services?”
  • “Were they sufficiently covered on the site?”

The latter will help you improve your site performance too.

The cool thing is that you will also be able to use your survey results in site content and articles, making your site intent-rich, trustworthy, and linkable.

It’s also a wise idea to set up a well-defined routine to help you record your customers’ questions as they come. This will help you in both content planning and social media goals.

Slack is a nice tool to help your in-team communication and idea-sharing. Simply set up a separate Slack channel and encourage your customer and support team to send your customers’ questions there as soon as they come across any.

Using your web analytics is another way to listen to your customers and readers. Finteza is a great solution to better understand which content and on-page elements your site users respond to best. It supports a variety of events including mouse-overs, clicks, and downloads allowing you to measure which content does a better job engaging your readers:

Conversion funnels and content's role in itSource: Finteza

3. Take seasonal trends into account

There are holidays and seasonal trends to include in your content editorial plans. When you catch a trend, there’s always a huge boost of interactions, new followers, and clicks.

Using seasonal trends to create content ideas Source: Screenshot by the author

The great thing about seasonal trends is that you can plan your editorial calendar months in advance because they are easy to predict and repeat yearly. This means you’ll be able to re-use your calendar as a reference point to structure your seasonal content strategy and improvise for maximum success.

Simply sit down and plan your content assets for upcoming big holidays, seasonal events like spring cleaning season, summer holidays, Amazon Prime Day, and other noteworthy days that are relevant to your target customers.

Editorial calendar for roadmapSource: Screenshot by the author

You can use Google Spreadsheets to create your content roadmap. To better focus on ideation and get more inspired, I usually start with planning my seasonal content using a printable calendar which you can easily find using these steps.

There are handy calendar apps that can even integrate into WordPress to keep track of those holidays you may want to include in your social media editorial plan.

You can schedule social media updates as far as one year ahead to make sure there’s always something going on your brand channels no matter how busy you get.

4. Get out into the world

We have a tendency to look for our inspiration online because we are targeting an internet-based audience, which is totally understandable: you can discover so many wonderful topics on the web. It just isn’t the only place we can look and purely searching online actually limits our scope, and so our returns.

The most popular piece of content is one that comes from the real world. People love personal stories!

Go out into the real world. Seek out events in your industry, or things that are tangentially related. Discover how everyday experiences connect to your niche and use your social media channels as a platform to explain and share with others.

Get out of cyberspace and into meet-space!

A good way is to engage with your local community (now in a safe and socially distanced way!)

This serves as a great way to understand the pulse of your audience/target customers, their intent, and personal experiences that impact their decisions. Plus, you also earn a chance to introduce new people to your brand.

You can also connect with other local brands, businesses, and business owners and potentially work out some topic ideas that way.

5. Find out what people are asking online

Question research offers a few important marketing opportunities:

  • Questions give you lots of insight into what your target audience is struggling with and how to best help them
  • Questions are your best content ideation source
  • Covering niche questions online opens up more organic search visibility opportunities including getting featured and ranking in “People Also Ask” results
  • Asking a question on social media is one of the most important ways to increase your social media engagement because whenever they see a question mark, people have that natural reflex to stop and find an answer

So ask questions on social media often and engage with answers you receive.

If you are open to trying tools to bolster this exercise, Text Optimizer is a smart option. All you Just type your keyword into its “Topic Ideas” section and it will generate a list of topic ideas for you:

Questions for research and content creationSource: Screenshot by the author

Every question is rated based on how many people are searching for it and how many sites are covering it – giving you a clear analysis of demand vs competition which informs your decision making.

The tool is paid and I am not aware of any alternatives. But the good thing is, question research will be mostly free. You will get some content ideas without the need to pay or register an account.

Quick tip: If you install their Google Chrome extension, most of that analysis will come for free as long as you use Google Chrome.

Source: Screenshot by the author

6. Learn the art of content re-packaging

Right off the bat, re-packaging content is going to be the best weapon in your arsenal. It takes what you already have and makes it stretch, getting more out of every piece you write. A lot of those prolific writers are using this tactic, albeit at its extreme. That is how they manage to get so much out without others writing for them.

So what does re-packaging content entail? It is creating new content directly from the old. Some ways to do that are:

  • Collecting articles into an ebook to give away on your site (As a bonus, this would also make a great lead magnet!)
  • Creating a webinar with the information you have written
  • Turning your content series into a (mini) email course
  • Creating newsletters
  • Recording a podcast with the old post content
  • Shooting a video with the old post content
  • Converting info from posts into infographics
  • Making a Slideshare presentation with condensed slides
  • Writing new posts based on small details mentioned in old posts that have been expanded

These are only a few examples, but you get a general idea. A piece of content should never remain on its own without some form of recycled item coming out of it.

Looking at that list of ideas for re-packaging old content, did any of them stand out as forms of media you have never tried before? It may be time to start expanding what you create and produce something brand new.

This will attract a new kind of audience, one that is drawn to the media in question. Do you usually write blog posts? Start making infographics or videos. Never done a Slideshare slideshow? Consider it now, and see if it gets any bites.

You will be able to recycle your content better this way, and it will keep you from being burnt out. That will inevitably have an impact on the speed and quality of your content creation.

Content ideation isn’t easy and moreover, it is a continuous struggle. Let’s hope these ideas will get you out of that writer’s block!

Ann Smarty is the Founder of Viral Content Bee, Brand and Community manager at Internet Marketing Ninjas. She can be found on Twitter @seosmarty.

The post Six content ideas to supercharge your marketing in 2021 appeared first on Search Engine Watch.

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This week in growth marketing on TechCrunch

July 3, 2021 No Comments

TechCrunch is trying to help you find the best growth marketer to work with through founder recommendations that we get in this survey. We’re sharing a few of our favorites so far, below.

We’re using your recommendations to find top experts to interview and have them write their own columns here. This week we talked to Kathleen Estreich and Emily Kramer of new growth advising firm MKT1 and veteran designer Scott Tong, and published a pair of articles by growth marketing agency Demand Curve.

Demand Curve: Email marketing tactics that convert subscribers into customers Growth marketing firm Demand Curve shares their approaches to subject line length, the three outcomes of an email and how to optimize your format for each outcome.

(Extra Crunch) Demand Curve: 7 ad types that increase click-through rates The growth marketing agency tells us how to use customer reactions and testimonials, and other ads types to a startup’s advantage.

MKT1: Developer marketing is what startup marketing should look like MKT1, co-founded by Kathleen Estreich, previously at Facebook, Box, Intercom and Scalyr, and Emily Kramer, previously at Ticketfly, Asana, Astro and Carta, tell us about the importance of finding the right marketer at the right time, and the biggest mistakes founders are still making in 2021.

The pandemic showed why product and brand design need to sit togetherScott Tong shares the importance of understanding users and his thoughts on how companies manage to work together collaboratively in a remote world.

(Extra Crunch) 79% more leads without more traffic: Here’s how we did it — Conversion rate optimization expert Jasper Kuria shared a detailed case study deconstructing the CRO techniques he used to boost conversion rates by nearly 80% for China Expat Health, a lead generation company.

This week’s recommended growth marketers

As always, if you have a top-tier marketer that you think we should know about, tell us!

Marketer: Dipti Parmar
Recommended by: Brody Dorland, co-founder, DivvyHQ
Testimonial: “She gave me an easy-to-implement plan to start with clear outcomes and timeline. She delivered it within one month and I was able to see the results in a couple of months. This encouraged me to hand over bigger parts of our content strategy and publishing to her.”

Marketer: Amy Konefal (Closed Loop)
Recommended by: Dan Reardon, Vudu
Testimonial: “Amy drove scale for us as we grew to a half-billion-dollar company. She identified and exploited efficiencies and built out a rich portfolio of channels.”

Marketer: Karl Hughes (draft.dev)
Recommended by: Joshua Shulman, Bitmovin.com
Testimonial: “Karl is incredibly knowledgeable in the field of content and growth marketing to a large (and equally niche) target audience of developers. He and his team at Draft.dev are some of the best at “developer marketing,” which is a greatly underrated target audience.”

Marketer: Ladder
Recommended by: Anonymous
Testimonial: “They really get what I need. By testing different messaging on different personas, we discover what works and what doesn’t to better understand our users and prospects. This is gold for a company at our stage. Showing those results to our investors blew their minds.”


Social – TechCrunch


The New AI Tools On the Scene in Digital Marketing

July 3, 2021 No Comments

Artificial intelligence is revolutionizing the digital marketing world. Here are some of the best AI tools currently available for small businesses.

Read more at PPCHero.com
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The New Wave of Digital Marketing in the Post-Pandemic World

June 25, 2021 No Comments

The pandemic greatly accelerated the evolution of digital marketing, creating new marketing trends and opportunities for businesses in a short period of time.

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Here’s how you can master your next seasonal digital marketing campaign

June 20, 2021 No Comments

30-second summary:

  • To ensure organic visibility for your seasonal pages, start creating, optimizing, and analyzing them now
  • Start creating, organizing, and scheduling seasonal content assets now for a head-start when it’s time to start focusing on driving sales
  • Evaluate your past seasonal content performance to be able to recycle, update, and possibly even expand them into standalone projects
  • Research your competitive tactics to evaluate how they utilize seasonality in their digital marketing strategy
  • Create a detailed editorial calendar to plan out all assignments and deadlines to “catch” the rising interest in seasonal content and deals

Summer is a slow season for many businesses, especially those in a B2B niche. If things are a bit slow for you now, here’s an idea – Use these quiet months to turn your next big season into a huge boost for your business. Here is how you can start preparing for your next big seasonal content marketing campaign now:

1. Check your seasonal rankings now

Do you have a page (or pages) offering seasonal deals, gift ideas, and special offers? The demand for this type of content may be seasonal but its rankings should be permanent. That’s why I always advise against removing these pages or even delinking them throughout the site.

You want those pages to always be accessed by Google for your rankings to be there when the searches start climbing.

If you cannot find your site ranking for your target seasonal queries, it is time to set them up even if the actual season is still months ahead.

Seasonal campaignsSource: Screenshot created by the author

Furthermore, Spyfu offers a comprehensive analysis of all SERP movements for you to identify important patterns and spot a competitor that was doing the best job retaining their organic visibility for seasonal search queries:

SERP analysis of seasonal marketing campaignsSource: Screenshot created by the author

Read more about this feature here.

When it comes to SEO, seasonality can be tricky but it definitely needs to be planned ahead as organic SEO takes time to yield results.

2. Start creating seasonal assets (content and social)

Your high season is going to be a busy time for you and your team, so while planning your upcoming campaigns, start creating (and even scheduling) your content assets beforehand.

When brainstorming seasons content ideas, I always turn to Text Optimizer that does a great job suggesting related concepts and angles to focus on:

Semantic search for seasonal content ideas

Source: Screenshot created by the author

The tool relies on semantic analysis.

Content marketing involves a lot of channels, so the more you are prepared, the easier (and more productive) your seasonal campaign will turn out to be.

Furthermore, there are a few cross-channel content marketing tools that can help create and organize your seasonal content. For example, Boosted by Lightricks allows you to easily create festive videos in multiple formats:

Formats for cross channel marketingSource: Screenshot created by the author

This way you can create content assets that will fit all of your channels. There’s also a handy Brand Kit feature allowing you to maintain a consistent visual identity throughout all your assets:

Creating a brand kit for seasonal campaignsSource: Screenshot created by the author

The app is available on iPhone and Android for free. You can choose to upgrade for $ 4.99 per month. I for one have been using the free tier (and the above screenshots are taken when using the free version of the app).

The platform also offers a list of seasonal content ideas and hashtags to make your campaign even more effective.

There are a few more video creation apps out there but I don’t think any of them let you access so many great features for free.

Another great content creation tool that gives you lots of free features for free is, of course, Canva. I’ve been using Canva for free for as long as I can remember without ever having to upgrade.

Christmas campaignsSource: Screenshot created by the author

Here’s the guide on planning a Christmas marketing campaign.

3. Evaluate your past seasonal campaign performance

If you were publicizing any seasonal content over the years, find all of it to:

  • Explore an opportunity for an update (“Can I reuse this asset this year?” as well as “How can I make it better?”)
  • Evaluate how effective it was in attracting traffic as well as turning those clicks into conversions

Google Analytics offers an easy way to identify landing pages that did the best job attracting traffic during any period:

  • Go to the Acquisition report and select one channel (for example, “social” or “organic search”)
  • Select the date range of your seasonal campaign from the last year
  • (Optionally) Check the box “Compare” and select “Previous year” from the drop-down
  • Click “Landing page” tab in the chart below:

Analyzing past seasonal campaigns' performance in Google AnalyticsSource: Screenshot created by the author

This gives you an at-a-glance report of the highest traffic page from your previous campaigns. You can further narrow it down by using word filters (for example, type “blog” there to see your best performing seasonal content).

To analyze conversions, you can use Google Analytics goals and funnels. Another tool I am using to closely monitor incoming traffic and its conversions is Finteza. Because it makes it incredibly easy to narrow the data down to identify which traffic source is sending traffic and how well it converts as compared to other pages.

Finteza dataSource: Screenshot created by the author

Read more about Finteza’s conversion funnels here. Finteza costs $ 25 a month and there’s a 30-day trial available for you to play with the tool before committing.

4. Consider starting a tradition

If any of those previous content assets turned particularly successful, consider expanding that idea into a new project! We all remember the overwhelming success of “Elf Yourself”, Ask Santa, and NORAD mini-projects that were able to engage (and convert) thousands of people year over year.

 A separate (single-page) site will be easier to brand and promote without causing any strong associations with your main business. If you need some inspiration, check out Namify:

Start a tradition for your next seasonal campaignSource: Namify

5. Look what your competitors did (or didn’t)

Competitive analysis is important because it motivates a business owner to do more and do it better. Therefore I always include competitive analysis in any of my marketing planning.

There are plenty of ways to research your competitors and what they are doing. My first step is always checking Ahrefs and what other search queries they are ranking for:

competitor analysisSource: Screenshot created by the author

Ahrefs is the only platform in the industry that also offers an estimate of traffic each search query sends. Here’s how they calculate it. Ahrefs lowest tier is $ 99 per month but it is definitely a must-have tool if you are doing SEO.

Similar Web is another nice tool for competitive research. I like looking at their “Referral Traffic” report to identify which sites are sending traffic to my competitors:

Similar WebSource: Similar Web

This basic report is available for free.

It is also a good idea to set up Google Alerts to be modified when your competitors are doing something new.

6. Create your editorial calendar

Every year people seem to start preparing for big holidays earlier. It is not unusual to spot a Holiday-centric social media ad in October. This can actually cause both excitement and irritation.

So the important question remains: When should I start publishing seasonal content?

This may depend from niche to niche, so I always suggest typing your target seasonal search query into Google Trends:

Google search trends on seasonal keywordsSource: Screenshot created by the author

It also helps to compare several of your target search queries. For example, in this niche the demand seems to be pretty consistent over the years:

Google Trends compareSource: Screenshot created by the author

When it comes to organizing and scheduling your content assets, there are a few great calendar plugins to choose from. I mostly use CoSchedule because it allows me to also schedule those updates to your social media channels as well as assign certain content assets to various contributors. 

CoSchedule costs $ 29 per month. It supports scheduling to Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, and Instagram. I prefer the tool because it combines on-site content planning (assigning content assets to be written) and social media scheduling. This allows me to create a very well-aligned content marketing campaign and makes it easy to organize editorial workflow across many channels.

Instagram also offers a helpful guide on planning your seasonal content strategy here:

Instagram resource on holiday seasonal marketingSource: Screenshot created by the author

Conclusion

Seasonal planning is a great way to make the most of those seasonal interest spikes and build more sales. The earlier you start preparing for your big season, the more time you have to handle an increased amount of sales. Good luck!

Ann Smarty is the Founder of Viral Content Bee, Brand and Community manager at Internet Marketing Ninjas. She can be found on Twitter @seosmarty.

The post Here’s how you can master your next seasonal digital marketing campaign appeared first on Search Engine Watch.

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