Bob’s Weekly Reading Picks
2019.9.29 volume 38
1.Digital Marketing for Your Business
2.How to Write a Press Release by Backlinko
3.How to Become an SEO Expert: A Guide to FREE Online SEO Training
4.Should My Brand Work with an Affiliate Marketing Agency?
5.How Leading Brands Are Working with Loyalty Partners in Their Affiliate Programs
6.Maximizing Your Brand’s Performance Through YouTube
7.Computer-Generated Instagram Influencers
1.Digital Marketing for Your Business
Step #1: Research Your Market
1). Analyze Your Industry
Industry analyses usually include:
- An industry overview
- Overviews of different sub-sectors
- Information about typical customers
- An assessment of technology if it’s relevant the market
- Past and future trends
2). Get to Know Your Competitors
- Which specific market segments they are targeting
- What products and services they offer
- What their strengths and weaknesses are
- Where there might be an opportunity for you to win business
- Their target audience and customer profiles
- Their pricing strategy
- Their revenue and profitability
3).Find Your Buyer Persona
demographic information: age, location, gender, and age.
other: marital status, employment, education, values, interests, and more.
Buyer personas will help you to find out:
- what matters to your customers
- how they think
- where they spend their time
- which of your services and products they need and why
- what values are important to them
- what they expect from your company
Step #2: Launch Your Social Media Marketing Campaign
YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook…
Step #3: Look After SEO
Configure Google Analytics and Search Console
Perform a keyword research
Optimize Your Website for Search Engines
Improve Your Website’s Speed
Create Content That Can Get Ranked
Step #4: Extend Your Reach With SEM
For best results with SEM and PPC, you’ll also need to pay attention to ad targeting, creating filters and editing ads to make them more effective
Step #5: Invest In Content Marketing
There are a lot of different types of content (articles, blog posts, white papers, ebooks, infographics, news stories, case studies, videos, podcasts and more). You’ll need to understand your audience to know where they hang out online and which types of content they like best.
optimize your content to SEO, and promote your content.
Learn more about content marketing
Step #6: Create An Email Marketing Strategy
Set up an email marketing platform
Write engaging copy for your emails
Choose or create a beautiful design
Get your email campaign up and running
Analyze the results of your campaigns
Learn more about email marketing
CHAPTER 1:Press Release Fundamentals
What Is a Press Release?
A press release (also known as a “media release” or “news release”) is a piece of content designed to inform members of the media about an organization’s recent developments.
Press Release Template
CHAPTER 2:Do Something Newsworthy
- New Industry Study
- Product Launch
- An Event
- Website Redesign or Rebrand
CHAPTER 3:Develop Your Hook
We took a dry topic that only appealed to pro marketers… and turned it into a hook that would appeal to more people.
CHAPTER 4:Write Your Press Release Headline
Step #1: Identify your hook.
Step #2: Use that hook in your headline.
CHAPTER 5:Write Your Press Release Lead
The #1 thing to keep in mind is that your lead should contain something SUPER compelling right off the bat.
CHAPTER 6:Write Your Body Copy
Write In The 3rd Person
So instead of: “We’re excited to announce our new product”.
Go with:“Acme Inc. announces new product.”
Format for Skimmers
Use Stats, Figures and Copy-and-Paste Copy
Add Quotes (Optional)
CHAPTER 7:Add Final Touches
Screenshots, Images, Headshots, Logos, Videos
Add Contact Info
Add Boilerplate Company Info
Edit Your Release
CHAPTER 8:Distribute Your Press Release
Press releases can indirectly help your SEO in a bunch of different ways.
First, your press release can show up in Google News, which is great for ORM.
Second, your release can get picked up and syndicated on sites that use dofollow links. And as long as they don’t just copy your exact release word-for-word, those links will help your SEO.
- PR Newswire
- Advanced SEO: Developing an SEO-Friendly Website: Lynda.com
- Advanced Search Engine Optimization Strategies: Coursera
- Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide: Google 32 pages.Hubspot has published a two-page version here.
- Search Engine Optimization for WordPress:
- What Works in Content Marketing: Search Engine Journal
- Content Marketing 101: A Free Guide for Beginners or Pros: Udemy
Schema markup, is a form of microdata.
- Getting started with schema.org using Microdata: This Schema.org guide focuses on Microdata, showing examples in both RDFa and JSON-LD .
- Understand how structured data works: This Google codelab explains how to add different types of structured data to a simple HTML page.
- How to Use Schema Markup for SEO: This WordStream guide promises to teach you how to make your site easy to find for stupid machines
- Learning Conversion Rate Optimization: Lynda.com
- Conversion Rate Optimization Courses: Hubspot
- The Definitive How-to Guide for Conversion Rate Optimization: Moz guide
- The Complete A/B Testing Kit: Kissmetrics and HubSpot
- Website Performance Optimization by Google: Udacity
- Browser Rendering Optimization by Google: Udacity
- A beginner’s guide to website optimization: This freeCodeCamp guide
- A curated list of Web Performance Optimization Materials: A GitHub resource
Thanks to Google’s Penguin Algorithm and machine learning algorithm (RankBrain), links that are both earned and thematically related, carry more weight than ever.
- SEO Link Building Basics: Udemy
- Backlink Training: This Monitor Backlinks tutorial
- Illustrated Guide to Link Building: Search Engine Journal
- The Noob Friendly Guide to LinkBuilding: Ahrefs
- Beginner Local SEO | The Foundations of What Google Wants: Udemy
- Local SEO Course: 10x Your Local Customers: Udemy
- Introduction to Learning UX Design: Springboard
- User Experience (UX) Design: Human Factors and Culture in Design: edX course
Guides: A Collection of UX Guides Created by Google for Select Industries
- UX Playbook for Finance
- UX Playbook for Lead Gen
- UX Playbook for News & Content Sites
- UX Playbook for Real Estate
- UX Playbook for Retail
- UX Playbook for Travel
4.Should My Brand Work with an Affiliate Marketing Agency
Affiliate marketing accounts for 15% of the total eCommerce advertising revenue which includes paid search, social, organic, direct and email.
New brands who aren’t committed to spending money through Paid Search, Social Media, Influencers and other online marketing channels thinking that affiliate marketing can drive all their sales. I mean who doesn’t like performance based marketing? But, it’s only part of the piece of the online marketing puzzle.
More about Affiliate marketing
Affiliate Marketing Overview
Affiliate Marketing Guide
WHAT IS A LOYALTY PARTNER?
A loyalty partner can incentivize potential consumers with rewards on any action within the sales funnel deemed appropriate.
Some typical rewards include cash back, redeemable points, special offers or gift cards. Other more specialized examples of these rewards are airline miles rewards programs, college fund accounts and even offers to apply rewards toward charitable organizations.
HOW LOYALTY PARTNERS DIFFER
Loyalty partners tend to differ from other types of partners (e.g. content, coupon or deal partners) because of their ability to drive specific actions along with nuanced targeting capabilities.
TYPES OF BRANDS WORKING WITH LOYALTY PARTNERS IN AFFILIATE PROGRAMS
Any brand can work with loyalty partners. Some specific examples include:
- Brands that categorize themselves as non-promotional or those who don’t want to be considered discount-heavy.
- Brands desiring a higher order value on recurrent purchases.
- Brands needing geo-targeting capabilities.
- Brands looking to increase sales when business is slower.
MISCONCEPTIONS ON WORKING WITH LOYALTY PARTNERS
A common misconception among brands is the idea that loyalty partners don’t drive higher new customer percentages.
Another notable misconception with loyalty partners is around incrementality. Some brands contend that loyalty partners don’t drive incremental value for them.
WHAT LOYALTY PARTNERS LOOK FOR WHEN PARTNERING WITH A BRAND
To set your brand apart so that loyalty partners are in interested in working with you, there are a few things to know and do:
- Establish competitive commission rates.
- Be easy to work with.
- Strategically increase commissions.
Top-of-the-funnel awareness: increase your reach
Videos focused on building awareness are fun, relatable, memorable and emotive. Opt for emotion over logic for the best chance of achieving virality.
Top tips include:
- Ensure that your videos (titles and descriptions) are properly optimised with high-volume keywords and all SEO elements (e.g. video sitemaps and schema) are correctly implemented.
- Including a link back to your domain and, where relevant, deeper landing pages. This will provide indirect long-term SEO benefits and also improve your chances of ranking.
- On YouTube, a popular awareness tactic is to collaborate with established online influencers.
As the awareness stage is almost wholly about reach, the key metric to focus on is the number of views.
Mid-funnel consideration: instilling confidence
Our goal here is to connect with – and prove our worth and relevance to – all those who potentially need our services and products. Exhibit your value and USPs to show viewers why they should choose you over the competition.
Brand videos and company/culture stories.
talking head interviews with employees or existing loyal customers Interviewing an industry expert about a topical issue
As this level is about persuasion, plus earning trust and confidence, a suitable and telling metric to focus on is CTR to your landing pages. Channel subscriptions and engagement in the comment section are secondary indications of mid-funnel success .
The final stage: proof and conversion
The majority of users this far down the funnel have essentially already made their decision; they are simply weighing up who to buy it from and when.
90% of customers say that video helps them make buying decisions and that the inclusion of a product video on a landing page can increase conversion by up to 80%.
Additionally, customer reviews are useful to include at this stage of the customer journey as they still have a significant impact on conversion rates.
However, you should still keep a topline comparison of conversions vs. videos uploaded. You can then gather more granular data in Google Analytics.
Maintaining your viewership: audience retention
Retention of existing customers is a subject often ignored in sales funnel discussions. However, depending on your business model, it is arguably the most valuable tactic, costing less per conversion than new customers.
It’s possible to get your customers to do your marketing for you.
Video series is certainly worth considering.
Using YouTube to build a community – in tandem with your blog and social media strategies.
Here are a few easy tactics to generate a loyal YouTube viewership:
- Encourage user-generated content with competitions and challenges.
- Reward discussion and conversation in your comment sections. Ask your viewers to ask you questions and leave comments.
- Provide incentives for community engagement by giving shoutouts to popular contributors in a monthly YouTube video or/and social media posts.
- Use customer feedback and suggestions to inform the type of video you upload and thank individuals for their recommendations.
- Include videos (and additional content) in your member newsletter with additional insights and exclusive extras. Including the word ‘video’ in your email subject line increases open rate by 19%.
- Share behind-the-scenes footage to show your human side and maintain transparency.
- Organise occasional events or, if this impractical, sporadic webinars. This is an effective way to drive engagement, build loyalty and place your brand at the helm of a like-minded community.
Use Google Analytics and YouTube Analytics to illustrate returning vs. new users.
7.Computer-Generated Instagram Influencers
- Computer-generated imagery (CGI) is getting better and becoming more accessible to people who want to try out 3D art for themselves. Thanks to technological advances, CGI influencers like Miquela, Bermuda, and Shudu now exist on social media — and the trend is growing.
- Although they’ve been around for a couple of years, it’s still unclear why CGI influencers — who visit coffee shops, go to yoga, and even record music and model designer clothes — exist, or where the industry could go.
- One concern is that they could take jobs from real models. Another is the fact fake people don’t necessarily have to follow the same rules in terms of sponsored content that real influencers do — a loophole brands could use to their advantage.
- For now, CGI influencers are a novelty, because it’s still fairly clear they aren’t real. But as the technology gets better and better, it may become less obvious. Some media and marketing experts find this concerning.
- On the one hand, people who are unaware of the trend are open to be manipulated by a new wave of marketing. But on the other, CGI technology is opening up an art form with which young people can express their creativity in a new and exciting way.