The Website Marketing Group Blog

About The Website Marketing Group Blog

Michael Doyle - Managing Director of The Website Marketing Group

After 14 years of working in this industry, every day is a new learning curve which is why I love the job.

Here are some of our findings on the “best of the web” to keep you up to date with the latest news in the Internet business strategies.

From small businesses to Australia’s leading brands across multiple sectors and disciplines, this means we know what works and what doesn’t, allowing us to deliver tangible results that benefit your business where it really matters.

Whether it is a new brand identity-logo design, a social media marketing,  a complex website, an email marketing campaign or all of the above and more, our team can deliver the solution for your business.
Contact us today on 1300 911 772.

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Congratulations to the TWMG Team ! The Website Marketing Group has been successful in making the Smart50 for the SmartCompany Smart50 Awards 2011.

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Content Curation Tools Simplified (Infographic)

 

Content curation process is going to be easier if you own the right tools under your wings.

Nowadays, 43% of small business marketers spend six or more hours a week on social media, searching for content and trying to get audience’s attention. However, one-third of CEOs, owners and business owners want to spend less time focusing on it. Simplification is a must and choosing the best content curation tools is the right decision. There are tons of tools that can be utilised to help streamline the curation process and share it with your team, but which ones are the best? Here’s a list of where to start and how to keep social media from taking over your business life.

content-curation-tools-simplified-infographic

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Online Video Ad Is Going To Reach $780 million in 2019

video-marketing

Recent study revealed that Australian online video advertising market is going to grow from $198 million in 2014, to $780 million in 2019.

The report also found the proportion of online video ads traded in Australia was also on the up. However, the majority of this trading is for non-premium usage. Increasingly, ad agencies and brands are placing their online video inventory directly through ad exchanges, while some of them are building their own trading desks.

Furthermore, the report stated that several factors are  continuously stimulating consumption of online video in Australia. There is a higher and growing proportion of longer form content of all online video content watched, and a growing proportion is premium content such as movies or TV shows. Viewing patterns are being aided by improving data allowances from internet service providers, and a greater range of content availability from subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) providers.

News feature is the most popular type of content viewed on mobile devices with 21% of consumers watching it on most days, and a further 24% watch it at least once a month on average. Live broadcast programs such as sports and news are also gaining popularity. The growth of online video advertising outperformed all other major online general advertising segments, including online display advertising. The uptake for local over-the-top (OTT) subscription video on demand (SVOD) services from providers such as Quickflix is modest, and global players such as Netflix have yet to formally enter the Australian market.

However, more local and international providers are expected to enter the SVOD market in 2015, and competition will increase. Foxtel recently launched its Foxtel Go and Foxtel Presto services, whilst Google recently launched its OTT Chromecast device in Australia. Nine and Fairfax will both invest $50 million each in the StreamCo joint venture and privately, executives have suggested the video streaming platform will commission its own programming, not just pouring Nine content. The SVOD service is expected to launch in the first half of 2015.

Online video content is one of the most important strategy of Internet marketing. Many online publishers strive on both content and advertising perspective. Local online news sites are incorporating more online video content and those produced by online publishers such as Fairfax Media and Yahoo7 continue to evolve.

However, there is still a lack of locally produced ad funded content. Australians favour the majority of popular video content like music, gaming, sports, and movies from overseas websites. Due to a scarcity of video ad spots, video ad pricing for premium inventory, especially long form content, has increased significantly. However, non-premium ad rates are declining due to growing over-supply of ad spots in the market.

Brands and ad agencies see video as an important part of the overall video and TV ad buying process as a way to extend the reach of FTA TV campaigns. The market is moving towards a complete solution for buying video across traditional TV broadcasting and online video channels.

The Worst Marketing Decision You’ll Need To Avoid

poor-marketing-decision

“Make something people want.”

—Paul Graham

Creating a product nobody wants or needs is the worst marketing decision you ever make.

Still, for many years, this is one scenario where marketers always tolerate and accept as part of their job. They always tell themselves that they need to go to market with the product they have, not the one that people want or need. Then they wondered why their strategies failed, along with those expensive costs.

However, things are going to be a little bit different with growth hacking. Growth hackers believe that products can and should be changed until they are primed to generate big reactions from the first people who see them. In other words, the best marketing decision you can make is to have a product or business that fulfills a real need for a real and defined group of people, no matter how much evaluation it takes.

airbnb-timeline

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Take a look at Airbnb, a start-up now valued at some $10 billion, for example. Today we know it as a site where, as cofounder Brian Chesky put it, “you can book space anywhere. It can be anything, and it really is anything from a tent to a castle.” Yet in 2007, the business started as a way for the founders to turn the living room of their loft apartment into a little bed-and-breakfast. The founders named it airbedandbreakfast.com and put out air mattresses on their floor and offered free homemade breakfast to guests.

Going back to the drawing board and hoping to capitalise on popular technology and design conferences, the founders repositioned the service as a networking alternative for attendees when hotels were booked up. This was clearly a better market, but the company sensed they could improve the idea further, so they pivoted slightly to target the type of traveler who didn’t want to crash on couches or in hostels but was looking to avoid hotels. This did better still. Finally, based on feedback and usage patterns, they shortened the name to airbnb and abandoned the breakfast and networking parts of the business, redefining the service as a place for people to rent or book any kind of lodging imaginable (from rooms to apartments to trains, boats, castles, penthouses, and private islands). This was explosive—to the tune of millions of bookings a year in locations all over the world.

Airbnb had a good idea in 2007, but the actual value proposition was a little mediocre. The founders could have spent all their time and energy trying to force the “let people crash on your floor and feed them breakfast” angle and creating a small business around it. Instead, they adapted their product and service as something malleable and were able to change and improve it until they found its best iteration. They went from a good but fairly impractical idea to a big, practical idea with a billion-dollar valuation. The shift was undoubtedly the best marketing decision they ever could have made.

Facebook Annouces A New Product

Here is another example: Instagram. It started as a location-based social network called Burbn (which had an optional photo feature). The main service is based on attracting a core group of users and more than $500,000 in funding. Yet, the founders realised that its users were flocking to only two features of the app: the photos and filters. The service soon remade to become Instagram as we know it today. The result? One hundred thousand users within a week of relaunching. Within eighteen months, the founders sold Instagram to Facebook for $1 billion.

It seems simple in words that the marketing lesson from Instragram is that they made a product that was just awesome. However, that’s good news for you. It means there’s no secret sauce, and the second your product gets to be that awesome, you can see similar results. Another blatant example is Snapchat, which essentially followed the same playbook by innovating in the mobile photo app space. The app became a trend among youngsters and skyrocketed to a $3.5-billion-dollar valuation with next-to-no marketing.

Some companies like Airbnb and Instragram spend a long time trying new iterations until they achieve what growth hackers call Product Market Fit (PMF) while others find it right away. The end goal is the same: to have the product and customers in perfect sync with each other. Today, it is the marketer’s job as much as anyone else’s to make sure the PMF happens. Rather than waiting for it to happen magically or assuming that this is some other department’s job, marketers need to contribute to this process. Focusing on who your customers are, figuring out their needs, designing a product that will blow their minds—these are marketing decisions, not just development and design choices.

Stop sitting and start the dirty work. Optimising a product to spread and be well received by customers, by the media, and by influencers is something that you, as a marketer or a growth hacker, are uniquely qualified to do. You are, in effect, the translator who helps bridge the producers and the consumers so they are in alignment.

The exercise forces the team to focus on exactly what its potential new product is and what’s special about it. No longer content to let the development happen as it happens, we can influence it with input, with rules and guidelines, and with feedback. The growth hacker helps with iterations, advises, and analyzes every facet of the business. In other words, Product Market Fit is a feeling backed with data and information.

Getting The PMF

As explained above, some companies spend a long time to achieve the Product Market Fit (PMF) while others find it right away Perhaps you’ll get to PMF with one quick moment like Instagram, or it may be incremental percent improvements. Companies need to do whatever is required to get to product/market fit, including changing out people, rewriting your product, moving into a different market, telling customers no when you don’t want to, telling customers yes when you don’t want to, raising that fourth round of highly dilutive venture capital; virtually any necessary steps. Going all out is a must.

Open Up to Feedback

Evernote

Being open up to feedback is important. Take a look at Evernote, a start-up that offers productivity and organisation software, which made the right decision to delay spending even a penny on marketing for the first several years of its growth. Phil Libin, Evernote founder, once told a group of entrepreneurs that “People [who are] thinking about things other than making the best product, never make the best product.” So Evernote took “marketing” off the table and instead poured that budget into product development. This undoubtedly slowed brand building at first—but it paid off. Why? Because Evernote is far and away the most superior productivity and note-taking application on the planet. Today, it practically markets itself.

Perhaps this is what you need to do. You might want immediate tips you can put into action, the places you can deploy your budget or resources. Still, let’s think outside the box, outside the budget, and consider whether improving your product might be the best strategy.

Once we stop thinking of the products we market as static—that our job as marketers is to simply work with what we’ve got instead of working on and improving what we’ve got—the whole game changes. Now we are not helpless, repeatedly pitching a product to reporters and users that is not resonating. Instead, we use this information to improve the product, with the idea of ultimately refining our idea into something that can in many ways sell itself.

The game has changed. The prize and spoils no longer go to the person who makes it to market first. They go to the person who makes it to Product Market Fit first. Because once you get there, your marketing efforts become like a spark applied to a bed of kindling soaked in kerosene. Marketing as we know it is a waste of time without PMF.

For the first time we can ask these questions because we intend to do something about it. No more privately complaining to friends, coworkers, and spouses that we’re stuck with a product nobody wants. Not to say that you must use all the data that comes back, but you should have it. The black-box approach is no longer necessary. Change is possible—which means you need to make yourself available and open to it. Product Market Fit is not some mythical status that happens accidentally. Companies work for it; they crawl toward it. But once these companies get PMF, they don’t just wait and hope that success will come along on its own. The next step is to bring the customers in.

All Australian Metadata Will Be Stored For Two Years Under The New Law

australia-map

All Australian metadata is proposed to be stored by telecommunication companies and internet service providers for two years, under the new legislation introduced to Parliament by the Australian government.

This morning, the mandatory data-retention legislation was introduced by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull to the House of Representatives.

“Modern communications technologies have revolutionised the ability of people to communicate, collaborate and express themselves,” Turnbull told Parliament. “Sadly, however, these same technologies are routinely misused and exploited by serious criminals and people engaged in activities prejudicial to security as a core part of their modus operandi.”

Metadata is generally defined as the time, date and location of calls and emails.

Turnbull stated that metadata plays a central role to almost every counter-terrorism, counter-espionage, cyber-security and organised crime investigation. It is also used in almost all serious criminal investigations, including investigations into murder, serious sexual assaults, drug trafficking and kidnapping. The legislation will require companies to retain their customer’s metadata from phone activity and internet usage and allow an enforcement agency access to the data without a warrant.

An explanation of the bill released by Parliament also stated browsing history and mobile phone content will be excluded. The accessing of content, such as the written part of an email, the actual conversation between two parties in a phone call, the subject line of an email or a private social media post, will still require a warrant. The bill does not give security agencies new powers, but rather allows previously retained data to remain available due to a longer period of preservation. This would allow investigations to not be stifled by old data that had already been deleted. ”It is not creating new classes of data to be retained, it is seeking to ensure the ability of our law enforcement agencies isn’t diminished,” Turnbull said. “There is nothing new about it.”

The bill will only allow law enforcement agencies access to the data, such as the police, customs, crime commissions and anti-corruption bodies. Any changes to this will need to be approved by the parliament. Telecommunication and internet companies have said they are concerned they will bear the brunt of the new bill, due to the cost of retaining data for a long period. This could lead to higher internet bills. The government has said it will work with organisations to implement the changes over an 18-month period after the introduction of the law.

The bill has been put to the House of Representative with just two sitting weeks of Parliament left in this session. It is expected to be pushed through the legislative process and become law this year, despite the vocal opposition.

Facebook’s Mobile Switch Drops The Ad Impression By 56%

facebook-ads-logo

Facebook advertising income for the last three months hit US$3 billion, despite a 56% drop in ad impressions as the side effect of social network’s focus to mobile.

The social network company has revealed its Q3 fiscal results showing that ad revenues climbed by 64% year-on-year, of which 66% came from mobile ads, an increase from 49% on the previous quarter. The price per ad has increased 274% in the last 12 months.

The seismic migration to mobile, which has prompted a greater push into News Feed paid-for ads and the recent roll out of autoplay video pre-rolls, accounted for the decline in impressions. So too did the redesign of Facebook’s right-hand-column on desktop which now houses albeit larger, but fewer ad spots.

A Facebook representative explained that while consumers are moving quickly to mobile, the company believes that the advertising industry isn’t keeping up, citing the example that 25% of media time is spent on mobile, but only 11% of brand budget is being spent on what is fast becoming the first screen. Facebook simultaneously revealed however that the development of News Feed video pre-rolls on Facebook and on Instagram will remain deliberate and slow.

The 56% decline, coupled with the seemingly enormous price hike, doesn’t surprise those working in the Australian advertising business. MEC digital director Thomas Lyngsfeldt explained that the way his firm is buying inventory on Facebook is significantly different now to how it was 18 months ago.

“This allows Facebook to effectively hide the price increase. We are delivering more effective campaigns now: I can safely say that we can reach 70% of a brand’s targeted audience within two days because of the News Feed ads,” he explained.

Lyngsfeldt was also quick to point out that, despite the 274% increase, Facebook as a broadcast channel is 10 times cheaper than cost-per-thousand delivered by TV. What might cost $2m on TV here would only cost $40,000 on Facebook. Plus, you can put a frequency cap on Facebook, which is something you certainly can’t do on TV.

On the other hand, Amobee’s director for APAC Chris Levings concurred that the 56% drop in impressions is not of concern to his clients. It completely comes in line with consumers’ move to making mobile the ‘first screen’ and the fact there is less distraction with mobile, we see it as being highly efficient.

Mobile daily active users on Facebook averaged 703 million during September 2014, an increase of 39% year-on-year, while monthly active users totalled 1.35 billion in the same month, an increase of 14% year-on-year. These figures now doubt contributed to recent figures from comScore in the US which show that Google-owned video sites, namely YouTube, racked up 158m unique users in June, while Facebook clocked in 61m. Conjecture among industry leaders suggests autoplay video ads on Facebook could ultimately overtake YouTube video views in the coming year.

Overall, Facebook’s revenue rose 59% year-on-year to $3.2 billion in the third quarter. However, costs rose 41% as a consequence of the addition of 1,200 new employees, most of them through a series of acquisitions including the US$19bn deal for messaging app WhatsApp and a US$2bn buy of virtual-reality headset maker Oculus Rift. Moreover, Facebook managing director for Australia and New Zealand area, William Easton, said: “The momentum in Australia for Facebook really mirrors the global results. We are seeing increased numbers of people on the platform and there is strong demand from advertisers both large and small. Our investment in new advertising tools Atlas and Liverail, plus our recent launch of video products and Instagram ads, offer Australian marketers exciting opportunities throughout Q4 and into 2015.”

The 2014 State Of Consumer Privacy & Personalisation (Infographic)

personalisation-versus-privacy

Latest research about consumer privacy and personalisation reveals that, when it comes to their data, modern consumers across the globe are demanding transparency, relevance and convenience.

The study also shows that social login usage is exploding as more businesses use it to reconcile these concerns and expectations. Here are some key highlights:

  • 77% of average consumers log in to websites and mobile app using their social media accounts.
  • Social login usage has increased by 45 percent just since 2012.
  • Over 80% of average consumers have abandoned online registration because they didn’t like the amount and/or type of information requested.

Take a look at the infographic below for more detail.

consumer-privacy-and-personalisation-infographic

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Search Engine Optimisation Should Be About More Than Just Your Website

multi-platform-mobile-seo

Sometimes, marketers need to step back and focus on the big picture. You need to know how offline, social and email channels can integrate with SEO for major wins.

93% of all consumers all over the world use search before making a purchase — and on top of that, 86% of people are conducting non-branded queries. That’s a lot of people using search in the buying process!

The question for marketers is, “Are you optimizing for search? Are you optimizing for search on all channels?”

For most of us, when we think search and SEO, we think about our website. However, not only do people search on other channels, they also search based on what they see on other channels.

For marketers to truly be successful, SEO has to be synced up with other marketing approaches, starting with:

1. Offline Channels

A study from 2010 showed that 40% of online searchers were influenced by offline channels, while 67% of online users are driven to search from exposure to some offline channel. They saw something in print, on TV, on the highway, or perhaps, on the train during their morning commute and then headed over to the web to search for it. Your job is to ensure that when people take that step, they actually find our website. That’s the real value of good SEO.

The challenge is that there’s a good chance the person searching won’t be searching for your brand. Truthfully, they probably won’t even remember it. You need to align the SEO strategy with your offline marketing campaigns to ensure our site can be found. You need to know:

  • What taglines are being used?
  • What are the story lines?
  • What images are used?
  • What’s in the ad copy?
  • What makes the ads memorable?
  • How will people search for the ad?

These things should then all be integrated into the website and other online channels (think social), geared at capturing your offline audience who will be searching by what they remember.

Let’s use Nike as an example. It is a huge brand that recently put out a fantastic commercial commemorating Derek Jeter’s final season. However when people searched “derek jeter ad”, they will get a page full of news stories (and YouTube videos) about the his Gatorade commercial:

derek-jeter-ad-search-result

However, when you add “nike” on the keyword string, you might get the following results:

nike-derek-jeter-ad-search-result

The point is, if people can’t quickly and easily find a commercial put out by Nike, it’s going be really hard for them to find content put out by smaller, lesser-known brands.

2. The Power of Social Media

Recent poll revealed that 62% of consumers claimed that social media had no influence on their purchasing decision. However, in a separate report, over 90% of consumers said they would be more likely to buy a product if it had been recommended to them by someone they follow online.

So what does it mean? Well, consumers aren’t exactly sure how social media is influencing their buying decisions, but they are looking for (and listening to) product recommendations from their online friends. In fact, do a quick search on Twitter for “have a recommendation,” and you’ll get a lot of results:

twitter-recommendation-tweets

The key here for marketers is not just monitoring the right keywords to be able to find and respond to these types of queries, but making sure you are using the right terms in your updates so users can find you. People are no longer just searching through traditional search engines, and it’s up to companies to ensure they can be found elsewhere.

Give your social media team a list of keywords people are using to find your business. Offer them Webmaster Tools data, AdWords data, whatever you can to help them understand how people find your product or service. Your social media team must also be thinking about SEO.

3. Email Marketing

Did you know that 122,500,453,020 emails are sent every hour? Email is undoubtedly one of the most successful marketing tactics we have. 42% of businesses say email is one of their most effective lead generation channels, with 88% of B2B marketers citing email as THE most effective lead generation channel.

Gmail Promotions Tab Visual Enhancement

When the Promotions Tab hit Gmail, many marketers were worried. Would email open rates go down? Would click-through rates go down? Would people even read their emails? While the data are still rolling in, one thing is for certain: there are some exciting opportunities. Back in March, Google rolled out their Promotions tab visual enhancements, giving email marketers the opportunity to create Pinterest like messages using structured markup.

gmail-promotions-tab-testing

Marketing consultant Justin Briggs also talked about utilizing structured data in email during his SMX East presentation, where he noted the integration with Google Now. For email marketers, utilizing the structured markup tactics SEOs are currently using could help drive open rates, click through rates, and improve overall campaigns. If you are an email marketer or an SEO/email marketer, help yourself by checking out this post from Litmus, which provides a great overview of the Promotions tab and offers instructions on how to generate these messages.

Conclusion

SEO should be something that is thought about in all departments. From web development to offline advertising to paid search, email marketing, and more. You need to be aware of how your audience looks for your products and services. While you may not be able to break down the walls and integrate every SEO aspect into every department, you have to take it upon yourself to deliver opportunities to your teams when you can. One small win can send you toward your success.

Your Email Might Be Showing Up In Google Searches

new-gmail-promotions-tab

Since the launch of Google’s new Gmail “Inbox” feature, users now able to access Gmail accounts via a Google search.

For some Internet savvy, this phenomena might not surprising, as Google is continuously experimenting and improving its services these days. Here are some keywords resulted in Gmail showing up in search results:

  • my inbox
  • gmail inbox
  • get inbox
  • show inbox
  • inbox from gmail
  • inbox by gmail

The report says the feature delivers all types of Gmail content, including Promotions, Social and Updates within search results, for both mobile and Google Now, but only works with frequently used accounts.

However, this doesn’t seem to be available for everyone yet. We tested this on three of oury Gmail accounts and the update worked on two frequently used accounts, but didn’t work on the account that we use less. Here’s an example of Gmail messages showing up in the search results:

gmail-inbox-in-search-result

Google Fit Is The New Threat For Apple’s HealthKit

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It looks like Google has taken the recent Apple’s HealthKit issue more seriously.

Google’s big concern is proven with the release of Google Fit, a fitness tracking app for Android.

The app (which connects to your existing Google account) acts as a main dashboard for tracking your fitness records and health goals. Like HealthKit, Google Fit extracts the data into the sensors in your smartphone to supervise on your daily activities like steps and active minutes. Users can also manually add exercise and other activities, such as biking and walking.

Google Fit’s dashboard, which also available on the web, tracks your activities over time and your progress toward exercise or weight loss goals. Eventually, you will also be able to connect Google Fit to third party apps and devices, including Android Wear smartwatches and fitness trackers from Runtastic, Polar and Basis

google-fit-apps

Google Fit’s dashboard tracks your activity and progress toward goals over time.

To make it easier for third-party app integration, Google also released the full versions of its Google Fit APIs for developers. A preview version of its software development kit for Google Fit has been released earlier this year. It contained a series of early partners, including Nike, Runtastic, RunKeeper, who will be among the first developers to make their apps Google Fit-compatible. The first batch of apps is expected in “the coming weeks.”

The Five Laws Of Content Marketing (Infographic)

At a glance, content marketing seems simple enough to execute.

In reality, the actual work might be daunting even for experienced marketers. The fact  is, we are dealing with a huge amount of procedures and principles to craft a solid content marketing strategy. If you want to skip all of these overwhelming details, today we summarise almost all best points in content marketing business into this handy infographic on the hard-and-fast rules of content marketing. Learn, practice and perform. That’s the key to a successful content marketing strategy.

the-5-laws-of-content-marketing-infographic

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