January 2018 News You Can Use

Happy New Year!

In this issue, we look ahead, we look back, and we look at what’s happening right now in the fascinating world of digital marketing.

  • Did ClickZ really predict the future?
  • Is SEO really dead?
  • Which stories drew the most attention last year?

Those are just a few of the stories you’ll find in this edition of Stukent’s News You Can Use.

Do you want to pump up your digital marketing muscles?

Then keep reading!

1. 12 DIGITAL MARKETING TRENDS FOR 2018

Topic: Ecommerce

Key Point: The beginning of the year is an excellent time to look at what may be coming down the pike. Some call them “predictions” and some call them “trends.” In fact, they’re typically a combination of both.

Call them what you may, Social Media Today’s Isabella Andersen gets right down to the basics in this article. Andersen highlights artificial intelligence, content marketing, voice search, and more … it’s a good read. Here’s that link: “12 Digital Marketing Trends to Watch Out For.”


2. TAKE TIME TO BRUSH UP ON YOUR ADWORDS SKILLS

Topic: Online Advertising

Key Point: Successful people in any field will keep returning to the basics – both in practice and in training. Google’s “Get Started with AdWords” video series, gives you a step-by-step review of AdWords account management fundamentals.

Revisit best practices in keyword planning, ad creation, goal tracking, and more … and do it all in under three minutes per video.

How does that sound? Here’s a link to bookmark and refer to often: Getting Started with AdWords.


3. DO UNNATURAL LINKS STILL HELP?

Topic: SEO

Key Point: White hat SEO practitioners want to know why black hat tactics still seem to work – despite Google’s all-out war against spam. A contributing factor, some say, is that Google doesn’t penalize sites that feed off “bad links.” Rather, they devalue the links.

Stu Draper has long maintained the wisdom of that approach. After all, if your ecommerce website will lose the blessing of Google when bad links point towards you, what’s to stop an unscrupulous competitor from paying to have a ton of those links built?

Answer: absolutely nothing.

Back to the question, though, “How do some sites appear to get away with reaping benefits from irrelevant links?”

Find out how Google’s John Mueller answered that crucial SEO enigma here: Do Unnatural Links Work or Not?


4. ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE (AI) AND YOU

Topics: SEO | Ecommerce

Key Point: If there’s one thing the 2018 predictions (aka “trends”) have in common, it’s a hat tip to artificial intelligence (AI). Google’s RankBrain led the SEO march in that direction, now Microsoft and Bing are coming out big in support of AI and machine learning.

Writing for Search Engine Land, Greg Sterling covers Microsoft’s recent announcements concerning everything from “next-gen” featured snippets to intelligent image search.

Find out more in this thought-provoking article: Bing Announces AI Intelligent Search.


5. IS SEO OPPORTUNITY GROWING OR SHRINKING?

Topics: SEO

Click to enlarge

Key Point: Here’s a good question to discuss around the water cooler: Is SEO losing ground or taking ground? Some say SEO is dead. Others say it’s more alive than ever. Who’s correct?

Moz captain, Rand Fishkin, took that question to task … and in a big way. Rand says you can’t even begin to answer it without “a huge amount of data about web searcher behavior” – data Jumpshot shared with Rand and Moz.

By interpreting metrics like total search volume over time, organic vs paid search click-throughs, and searches resulting in zero clicks.

What did Fishkin discover? Is it really the SEO Apocalypse?

According to Fishkin, SEO is still big-time but there are some trends to keep your eye on.  One of the most important is that, while desktop clicks are holding steady, mobile clicks are trending down.

Read more here: SEO Observations and Advice from Rand Fishkin


6. SMARTBLOGGER’S BEST POSTS OF THE YEAR

Topic: Content Marketing

Key Point: Looking back can be a big help in determining how to move forward – especially when it comes to content marketing.

In this article, SmartBlogger shares a list of posts that drew the most response in 2017. Headlines that drew the best share counts according to Buzzsumo, advice on writing technique and sentence structure, how to compose the perfect article … the content you’ll want to read now if you missed it earlier, and the content you’ll want to learn from if you want to break through the noise in 2018.

Check it out here, courtesy of the site built by the bravest guy in the world, Jon Morrow: The Best Posts in 2017.


7. GOOGLE’S 10 MOST-READ IN 2017

Topic: Online Advertising

Key Point: Did you enjoy those best of 2017 posts from SmartBlogger? We’re not finished yet. Think with Google gave us their top 10 articles from last year too.

Google covered topics like how to get more money, the future of marketing, and how to tell your brand’s story in six seconds. Those are tough stories to beat.

Did you read them? If not, here’s what to do next: Think with Google.


8. BUT DID LAST YEAR’S PREDICTIONS COME TRUE?

Topic: Ecommerce | Digital Marketing

Key Point: In the rush to predict the current year, we sometimes forget to go back and check last year’s predictions to see how they panned out. ClickZ says that’s not right. Anyone prognosticating about 2018 should have their feet held to the fire (so to speak).

How did ClickZ do with last year’s predictions? Turns out they scored 80%. Find out what went right and what didn’t. Get that info here: Flashback to the Forecast.


 

Congratulations! You’re all caught up on your digital marketing news and updates for the month! Tweet your excitement!

 

Let’s Rock and Roll in 2018

It’s a new year, and it holds new promise, new opportunities, and more possibility. Pick up the tools, learn what you need to learn, and get to work.

The world needs you.

 

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