may 2016 NYCU

May 2016 News You Can Use

It was tough weeding out the contenders this month. Google keeps testing new ad displays (even colors) and experimenting with the AdWords mobile/desktop conundrum. Their tests are drawing plenty of buzz, but we’ll watch for an announcement before we get too excited.

Meanwhile, there’s plenty of actionable news to discuss. We’ll cover the most recent raid on link value, how to rock your email campaigns, ways local businesses can get better organic ranking… and more in this month’s issue of Stukent’s News You Can Use.

Let’s get started!

1. GOOGLE CHANGES AD IMPACT RULES

Topic: Online Advertising

Key Point: You may have noticed this before: Your Google ad ranks in the #1 spot on the SERP, but ads below it display more ad extensions. That’s been a frustrating reality for years, making higher ranking ads look outclassed by lower ranked ads. The injustice has been rectified, says Google, but there’s a caveat: You have to make sure relevant ad extensions are enabled for your account. Find out more about the new rule here: Ad Format Change.


2. FACEBOOK STILL DOMINATING OUR TIME ON SOCIAL MEDIA

Topic: Social Media Marketing

Key Point: Twitter is getting hammered on all sides. The company’s stock valuation is down more than 60% over the past 12 months, and their standing in the online community has been shaken. Statista graphically demonstrates the fall  in a new chart. It shows Facebook enjoying top billing (30.3 mobile minutes per day for each monthly active user), Instagram at 7.1 mobile minutes, and Twitter trailing way behind at 2.7 mobile minutes per day. How much weight should user activity be given when considering your social media marketing mix? This chart can help you configure or adjust your current strategy.

Infographic: Twitter Falls Behind in Terms of Mobile Engagement | Statista


3. THE GOOGLE SPAM SQUAD IS STILL POLICING THE WEB

Topic: SEO

Key Point: Here’s a message you don’t ever want to see: “Google has detected a pattern of links from your site to other sites that is either unnatural or irrelevant.  This pattern attempts to artificially boost other sites’ ranking in Google Search results …Therefore, we are discounting the trust in links on your site.” Many sites did see that message recently, though, following a Google application the Unnatural Outbound Links penalty. Find out more about the action and its potential effect on SEO here: Unnatural Links.


4. TAKE PRODUCT INVENTORY WITH THIS NEW ADWORDS FEATURE

Topic: Online Advertising

Key Point: Google says 12% of top-ranked products offered by AdWords users are either not in stock or aren’t linked to an approved ad. That’s huge! Don’t worry, though, Google just launched a fix for the situation. Two new AdWords features – the product status column and the effective max CPC reporting column – can help you get a grip on lost sales. Find out more on the AdWords blog: Inventory Control.


5. THERE’S A LOBSTER ON FACEBOOK

Topics: Social Media Marketing

Key Point: This is not only an interesting development, but it could be one that gets your creative juices boiling. A company that deals in user-generated content (Lobster) is now integrated with Facebook. For most folks, that means a new way to generate income online. Sign up with Lobster, take photos of your daughter wearing her new Nikes™ and get paid for your troubles (maybe). For companies, it means there’s a new way to obtain permission to use content you find online. Lobster also cut a deal with Google to license YouTube videos. Interested? Find out more here: Lobster Money.


6. SHARPEN YOUR KEYWORDS & TARGETING SKILLS

Topic: SEO

Key Point: There are plenty of ways to waste your time online, but keyword research shouldn’t be one of them. Correctly approached, digging up rich keywords can be one of the most productive things you do. Google’s guide, Keywords to the Wise, is way worth the read and the watch. Changing one word can make a ton of difference in both organic search and in your AdWords results.


7. BEST PRACTICES FOR GOOGLE DISPLAY ADVERTISING

Topic: Online Advertising

Key Point: Google released a new guide to help advertisers get better results from display advertising. The push is towards matching the audience and the message to “the moment.” Want to know more about how to optimize display ads? Google’s got you covered. Read more here: Display Advertising Success.


8. GET BETTER EMAIL CAMPAIGN RESULTS – HERE’S HOW

Topic: Email Marketing

Key Point: Here’s an article way worth reading. A CIO writer polled marketing gurus to assemble their top tips for email marketing success. When the smoke cleared, there were 15 best-practice ideas standing, and they’re all listed here for the taking: Improve Email Campaigns. From advice about segmentation, to the best formatting method for your messages, to pointers about the subject line, these tips are email campaign gold.


9. SUCCESS THROUGH ANALYTICS

Topic: Analytics

Key Point: Today’s marketer has access to analytics tools and data that would’ve made old-time marketers dance a jig. The “Familiarity breeds contempt” maxim is hard at work, though, since many companies still don’t take adequate advantage of the analytics leverage available to them. Writer Genia Stevens takes one tool (Uprank) and illustrates the potential applications for SEO, architecture, and user experience (UX). Analytics tools don’t have to be complex to be valuable. Read more here: Intelligent Website Analytics.


10. HOW TO BOOST LOCAL SEO

Topic: SEO

Key Point: Here’s one more Google tutorial you’ll want to bookmark. For accurate advice on how to improve local business SERP ranking, Google is the go-to source. Play it straight and heed the advice in this Google My Business article. Find out what to do, what not to do, and how Google determines organic rank in the first place. Here’s that link: Local SEO Tips.


 

11. ADWORDS IS BUMPING UP FOR MOBILE USERS

Topic: Online Advertising

Key Point: Mobile usage keeps going up, but mobile click-throughs aren’t keeping pace with the growth. Google’s most recent attempt to bridge that gap: Bumper ads! The format is 6-second videos, and hopes are high they’ll be a big hit with mobile users. Atlantic Records helped test Bumper ads and found them to be “a really important part” of the campaign. Find out more about this new ad format on the AdWords blog: Bumper ads.

 


Bonus Goodies

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

Did we miss something you think should have made the list this month? Let us know in the comments section below.

Your recommendations are always appreciated.

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