June 18, 2015

#DigitalDarwinism


I’ve been working in digital marketing long enough to see many changes: the Google shopping tab becoming a major revenue stream, “enhanced campaigns” [author’s note- I was on my honeymoon when they officially launched…my clients called that “bad timing”. I had my wedding booked before the very short notice was given], and the SF Giants, 49ers, and Golden State Warriors give Silicon Valley locals more to talk about than just technology 🙂

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The two most important things I have learned in my career are simple yet important.

1)      Digital marketing is ALWAYS evolving. As soon as you think you have learned everything, something new comes out.

2)      Search marketers are less like Don Draper and are more like Harry Crane. We are not that artsy and for the most part, not as cool as people would think. We do not convince people to buy things. We simply help them find what they are intending to buy. We scrutinize data and help connect shoppers to products in a very technical way. It’s not a glamorous job, but it does provide very big financial returns, and most people find that glamorous.

Below are 3 things you need to be doing right now to keep an edge on your competition, and to help your shoppers find your products.

Stop Ignoring Mobile

On May 5th, Google announced that more searches are happening on mobile devices than desktop devices. As a web professional, I knew the market was growing in the US, but I never thought it was growing that fast. I knew in developing countries this has been happening rapidly because mobile devices are more cost-effective than a family computer.

Many companies are simply not doing enough on mobile. And having a mobile marketing strategy is NOT enough. You need to have a mobile optimized website AND buying experience, too.

Website Design

If you just asked yourself what a mobile optimized website or buying experience is, stop reading this cool blog and tell your boss you need more budget. Google will ding you if your site is not mobile friendly. It’s 2015 – you need to have a responsive mobile site. Also, your desktop site needs to look updated/modern.

Whatever you did to get to Web 2.0 is out of date. Do not show me an image slider. Show me a simple design. And once you have a new beautiful site, go back to your boss and ask for more budget for the next version.

Here are some examples:
Cliche, I know. But Apple does design well
Here’s what others are doing

Understanding The Shopper’s Experience

You need to fully understand your potential customer’s experience. If you think your customer understands your value proposition “just because,” then you are mistaken. In fact, if you have not scrutinized and torn apart the shopping process, than you are not trying hard enough. Don’t confuse shoppers once they are on your site. Simplify and beautify the process. Conversion Rate Optimization is a new learning for me, and I love it. And you need to love it, too. As a matter of fact, that is the type of love that money can buy, and I promise it will pay you back with positive returns.
After all, you worked so hard to get a shopper to your site. Don’t blunder it away at the last minute.

 

Check back next week for Part 2 of #DigitalDarwinism for a continuation of the ways to stay relevant in an age of ever-changing digital marketing.