October 2013 Posts from the Internet Marketing Blog

Our Top 10 Posts from October are Scary-Good

Happy Halloween!You’re probably too distracted by candy and costumes today to get any real work done – amirite? – so why not kick back with some hot cocoa or what-have-you and catch up on the WordStream Blog’s greatest hits of the month? Here are our top 10 most popular posts from October:1.       Find Your Old Tweets: How to See Your First (Worst?) Tweet – Ever wonder what your first tweet was? Here are two easy ways to find your earliest tweets, plus first tweets from a bunch of celebs and high-profile search marketers.

#fun2.       How to Get Phrase & Broad Match Traffic Data Back from Google Keyword Planner – Victor offers three methods for hacking Keyword Planner to get data beyond exact match.3.  &n... > Read more

October 31, 2013     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In:   |   Comments: 4

Meet Bing’s New “Hero Ads”

Bing Ads has today announced a way to potentially one-up Google’s Image Banners in Search Listings.The new ad format, called “Bing Hero Ads,” were shown off at a Bing Ads event at the Microsoft Campus, and are currently visible on a subset of keyword searches conducted within the recently released Windows 8.

1.Hero Ads provide a bold, strongly-branded, task-completion oriented experience for certain branded searches, as you can see by the photos I snapped here for Home Depot, Radio Shack and Disney:The pilot project is currently limited to searches conducted in Windows 8.1 in the US. No word yet on if this will make it to the Web version of Bing Search. The test is being run with a limited number of big brands. If you don’t see them, it’s because they’re only show up on a subset... > Read more

October 30, 2013     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In:   |   Comments: 5

Buy Facebook Fans! They’re Worth $174 More than Non-Fans On Average!

According to the internet, a Facebook fan is worth $174.I imagine this was Zuck-dawg’s first response to the news.Every month, 12,100 people search on the keyword [buy Facebook fans], and there are two types of people who search for this query that worry me. The first type is someone who believes that the number of Facebook fans they have is a measure of Facebook marketing success.

Then there are those who make a living off of people who hold those beliefs. These people are necessary in any marketing function, but it becomes a problem when they lose track of the true value behind what a Facebook ”like” is supposed to stand for.In today’s post, I’ll be breaking down the misconceptions we hold about the value of a Facebook fan on your brand page, including three questions to ask ab... > Read more

October 29, 2013     |   Written by: Victor Pan   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 6

AdWords Impression Share: Understanding and Improving Your Impression Share

Many times I have seen instances where clients pause keywords because they aren’t generating click or impression volume. While pausing is certainly one method for acting on low-performing keywords, I typically recommend pausing only as a last resort. There is plenty to consider when it comes to diagnosing why a keyword isn’t generating volume, and one often overlooked, yet informative metric is impression share.

Impression share is the number of impressions you've received divided by the estimated number of impressions you were eligible to receive. Eligibility is based on your current ads' targeting settings, approval statuses, bids, and Quality Scores. You can view impression share data at the campaign, ad group and keyword levels.Types of Impression Share in AdWordsThere is more to im... > Read more

October 28, 2013     |   Written by: Billy McCaffrey   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 9

What the New AdWords Ad Rank Algorithm Really Means

The PPC world is abuzz with this week’s announcement that AdWords is introducing a new component to its Ad Rank formula. In the past, an ad’s position was dictated by a combination of two factors, the keyword’s Quality Score and its max CPC bid.Google has now thrown Ad Extensions into the mix to serve as a tie-breaker of sorts.

As Google describes it, “if two competing ads have the same bid and quality, then the ad with the more positive expected impact from extensions will generally appear in a higher position than the other.” This is, by far, the biggest change to Google’s ad rank algorithm since AdWords’ inception over a decade ago. So let's take a look at what it means.Why did Google adjust the ad rank algorithm?For all intents and purposes, the old ad rank formula seemed... > Read more

October 24, 2013     |   Written by: Erin Sagin   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 29

Facebook Graph Search & Privacy Concerns: Should You Be Worried?

What is Facebook Graph Search?Facebook Graph Search first launched in March 2013, allowing users to search for people, photos, places, and interests within the Facebook search engine. Facebook Graph Search provides custom search results based on your own personal data, including information in the profiles of your friends.

As you type a search query, Facebook Graph Search auto-completes the query, suggesting friendships through existing connections, Facebook pages, and apps, before finally providing web results.New Facebook Graph Search: Now With More Stalking Power!In recent months, Facebook developers have made Graph Search even more powerful, now capable of providing results on searches for:status updatesphoto captionscommentscheck-insThe updated Facebook Graph Search can also search fo... > Read more

October 24, 2013     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 12

Google’s New Ad Rank Formula: Is the Change to Ad Rank Good or Bad for Small Businesses?

Yesterday, Google announced that it was releasing a major change to its Ad Rank algorithm, which determines the order of the paid search ads on each SERP as well as how much advertisers pay in the ad auction.  In a nutshell, Google is now using the presence and performance of ad extensions in determining Ad Rank.

Previously, Ad Rank had just two components: your Max CPC Bid (the most you were willing to pay per click) and your Quality Score (Google’s assessment of the quality of your keywords, ads, and landing pages). Now, the formula has three components: your Max CPC Bid, your Quality Score, and, as Google puts it, “the expected impact from your ad extensions and formats.”I was chatting with our founder, Larry Kim, about the change, and he noted that this change is bad for sma... > Read more

October 23, 2013     |   Written by: Adam Shain   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 2

Top 5 Ways You're Leaking Money in AdWords

The typical small business wastes 25% or more of their total paid search spend. It’s obviously a big problem, but tackling wasted spend in Google AdWords can be challenging for account managers. Instead of focusing on the latest PPC fads or shiny new tools, I encourage advertisers to head back to the basics and focus on the core components of their campaigns.

Oftentimes, just by tweaking your settings or adjusting your structure, you can patch up your biggest account leakages.Here are the top five culprits that I recommend taking a second look at when assessing your wasted AdWords spend.Overuse of Broad Match TypeSetting all of your keywords to broad match can have a devastating impact on your PPC account. Remember, by setting a keyword to a broad match type, you are opening the doo... > Read more

October 23, 2013     |   Written by: Erin Sagin   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 4

Blog SEO Tips for Non-SEOs: 3 Things Bloggers that Aren’t Search Nerds Forget to Do

Here’s your “duh” of the day: You don’t have to be an SEO to be a good blogger. I bet 90% of search marketers read a blog or five that has nothing to do with search marketing, whether it’s a cooking blog, nail art porn or Andrew Sullivan.Some of the best and most popular blogs in any given niche get high rankings and lots of links without thinking too hard about SEO.

Instead, they focus on:Great content: Popular blogs develop huge readerships primarily because the content is awesome; it’s that simple. (Here’s a reminder of the eight qualities that make great content great.)Great design: Almost as important as great content is great design – your business blog needs to be both attractive and usable. High-quality photographs or illustrations are a big plus.Community building:... > Read more

October 22, 2013     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: Blogging   |   Comments: 124

Google Stock History Shows Shares Trending Up, CPC Trending Down – Here’s Why

The Q3 2013 earnings call revealed that Google shares are at an all-time high – and yet, average cost per click (CPC) continues to fall.With Google stock up, you’d expect CPC to be up as well. After all, something has to be driving the growth. So what gives?Attention Shoppers: AdWords PPC Ads Are On Sale (Again!)The trend is clear – cost per click on Google’s paid search ads continues to fall.

The average CPC in Q3 was down 4% since last quarter and down 8% versus the same quarter last year. This is the 8th consecutive quarterly decline in average CPC since Q4 2011.Our own internal customer data aligns nearly perfectly with the official earnings reports – we found average CPC to be down by 9% this year. And as you can see by the trend line, we don’t see things bottoming out any... > Read more

October 18, 2013     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: Google   |   Comments: 7

Will You Really Need a Higher SEO Budget in 2014?

Lately there have been a lot of rumors circling the web saying that small businesses will need to have a higher SEO budget in 2014. It’s clear that SEO efforts have become more popular, therefore more competitive, and therefore more expensive, but just how much needs to change in 2014? And what has changed in the SEO industry that is giving experts reason to say, “Yes, a higher budget is the answer to success”? Is this just a ploy by the industry experts, or will a higher SEO budget really be necessary this upcoming year – and if so, how much of an increase are we looking at here?4 Reasons Why You Need a Higher SEO Budget in 2014Unfortunately for many small businesses, your SEO budget in 2014 is going to need to increase if you hope to stay in line with your competition.

It’s not... > Read more

October 18, 2013     |   Posted In: SEO Marketing   |   Comments: 6

How to Get Phrase & Broad Match Traffic Data Back from Google Keyword Planner

One of the biggest complaints about Google’s Keyword Planner – the new keyword tool that replaced the old Google Keyword Tool and Traffic Estimator – is the lack of broad and phrase match traffic support. Contrary to what’s being suggested when you use the Google Keyword Planner, Google will only return exact match traffic.

Today I’ll be showing a few tricks to help you get your phrase and broad match traffic data back.What Google Says About Search Volume in Keyword PlannerGoogle suggests entering your keywords with standard match type formatting to get volume based on keyword match type:Naturally, an SEO would try all three formats for the same keyword, to compare the traffic volume data:Here are the results you see on Google Keyword Planner for the three match type variations:An... > Read more

October 17, 2013     |   Written by: Victor Pan   |   Posted In: SEO Marketing   |   Comments: 22

Google Shared Endorsements: Who Are the Real Winners and Losers?

Shared Endorsements are the latest in a line of updates that bring user reviews and ratings into the Google results. Announced earlier this week and coming to the SERPs in November, the newly expanded shared endorsements will allow reviews and +1’s from Google+ profiles to appear in the paid search results (not just organic).

For example, if someone searches for “hot springs in Colorado” and you reviewed a hot springs resort that has an ad on the first page for that keyword, your review (along with your name and Google profile image) might show up as part of the ad. Shared endorsements look like this (the one on the far right is an example of a shared endorsement appearing in a Google ad):Shared Endorsements: The Latest in a String of Ratings-Related FeaturesAs I mentioned, this isn... > Read more

October 16, 2013     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 3

Multi-Channel Marketing 101: Why Does Cross-Channel Marketing Matter?

Today we’re talking about multi-channel marketing – what it is, why it matters, and how to use it in order to better your business.Image from Get More Engagement.Multi-Channel Marketing DefinitionMulti-channel marketing is the practice of using multiple channels to reach customers. In addition to allowing businesses to reach customers through different mediums, multi-channel marketing also makes it easy for customers to complete desired conversions on whatever medium they are most comfortable with.

Multi-channel marketing lets the user decide, giving them a choice.In today’s modern marketing era, there are many channels a business can take advantage of in order to reach potential customers. These channels include:Retail storePPCWebsiteDirect mailEmailMail order catalogMobileWhy is Mu... > Read more

October 15, 2013     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Marketing Strategy   |   Comments: 13

Find Your Old Tweets: How to See Your First (Worst?) Tweet

Can’t remember what your first tweet was? It was probably “Hello world!” or “Is this thing on?” or “I finally joined Twitter, am I doing it right” or “Twitter sucks,” but if you want to know for sure, you’ll need to dig back into your archives.Unfortunately, Twitter only displays your last 3200 tweets in your timeline, so if you’re anything like me (I’ve been on Twitter since May 2009 and have well over 40,000 tweets), that won’t cut it.

Here are the two easiest ways to find your oldest tweets, including your first tweet. (I promise these work – a lot of the methods and tools you’ll find in the Google results don’t.)How to Find Your Old Tweets Using Twitter SearchOpen up Twitter.com and go to the search bar:Type in the following string but with your username ... > Read more

October 10, 2013     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 25

Want a Free AdWords Budget for 2014? Grade and Get Paid!

Are you a small business using Google AdWords to market your offerings? That’s great!The bad news is, you’re probably wasting about a fourth of your budget.We recently did a survey of 500 small business AdWords accounts, and found that the average account owner is wasting over 25% of his or her AdWords budget.

Since the typical small business spends $1200 per month on PPC, that means $300 is going in the trash every month – adding up to $3600 a year. And that’s just the average – many companies are wasting closer to half their total spend.That’s not all we found. There is plenty of room for improvement in the typical SMB AdWords account.We identified the top five areas where small business marketers need to renovate their accounts. Learn about the opportunities you’... > Read more

October 09, 2013     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 4

Funny Ads: Weird, Wacky Ads and Why They Work

It’s every advertiser’s dream to create a viral video that gets plastered over Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ (ha, yeah, because people care about G+). As we’ve discussed in previous posts, the chances of getting an ad to go viral are pretty low – you’re much better off creating educational or how-to videos that will gain a steady stream of visitors over time.

What about the 1% though? Those ads that practically promote themselves? One thing seems clear – most of them are utterly hilarious. Not just funny, but odd, quirky, and even downright bizarre. Today we’re looking at some of the weirdest, wackiest ads online, and examining why they are successful.PooPourri: Before-You-Go Toilet SprayThis video was what inspired this post – I was dying to share this ridiculously oddball... > Read more

October 08, 2013     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Marketing Strategy   |   Comments: 14

Content Marketing for Service Professionals: 3 Great Examples

Recently, I shared some great examples of e-commerce content marketing – three companies that are using content to promote their online product sales. It was a hit, so let’s do it again – but this time, let’s look at some service professionals that are doing great content marketing work.As ever, the goal of content marketing is primarily to build authority, trust, and interest in your brand.

By positioning yourself as an authority on a topic related to your business, you’re greatly increasing the chances that people will turn to you when they need your services. In other words, content marketing is a great method of lead gen for service professionals.Here are three service professionals putting out awesome blogs and other content to inspire your marketing ideas.Brand New: Addicti... > Read more

October 07, 2013     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: Marketing Strategy   |   Comments: 8

Landing Page Audit Case Study: McEwan Fraser Legal

I recently co-hosted a webinar for WordStream clients detailing landing page optimization best practices. Prior to the webinar, we gave our clients the opportunity to submit landing page examples for the chance to be audited during the webinar. The lucky winner was McEwan Fraser Legal, a Scottish firm that specializes in the residential property market, dealing with owner occupiers and property investors.

 The Landing Page AuditHere is the landing page submitted for our audit:The GoodThere are a few items from this landing page that I think are great.It has a formI love the fact that they have a form available directly on the page without creating extra steps for visitors. We live in such a busy world that many people will not fill out a form if they feel it requires any sort of t... > Read more

October 03, 2013     |   Written by: Ben Cohen   |   Posted In: Conversion Rates   |   Comments: 30

Overwhelmed with Blog Tips? Hack Learning with Just In Time Information

Information overload rules the Internet. Go do a Google search for any one of your favorite topics right now. How many results do you see?It’s easy to get obsessed with absorbing every piece of knowledge that we can. But that doesn't help us get anything done. The more you read, the more that gets lost in the bottomless repository that is your brain (or Pinterest board, Evernote account, etc).

It’s totally inefficient.Be honest, how many unsorted articles on blogging strategy do you have saved in Evernote or your bookmarking tool of choice? Instead of adding more and more links to the mountain, there's a better way to learn what you need to – with Just in Time information.What Does "Just in Time" Mean?The term Just in Time originated in business. According to Logistik, Taiichi Ohno, ... > Read more

October 02, 2013     |   Posted In: Blogging   |   Comments: 8

Case Study: The Anatomy of a Killer Quality Score

I’ve told you over and over that Quality Score is super important. It lowers your cost per click. It lowers your CPA. It improves your ad rankings. In short, high Quality Scores correlate really well with overall account success.OK, OK, you’re saying, I get it! But how do I actually get these high Quality Scores? Rather than spout the usual list of advice, let’s take a close look at a real account that has exceptionally high Quality Scores and see how they’re getting it done.

The account we’re going to be looking at belongs to a WordStream client, a small business in the insurance industry. Despite this being one of the most competitive verticals in AdWords, this advertiser is killing it with his AdWords campaigns. In fact, he has an average impression-weighted Quality Score of 8.... > Read more

October 01, 2013     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: AdWords Tips   |   Comments: 4
 
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