Welcome to this week’s #DigitalDigest where we run through the top Digital Marketing picks of the last week. Today we take a look at the effectiveness of digital marketing for small business, the next step in native advertising, Snapchat’s pricey ad opportunity and more.
Kicking off the week BrightLocal shares it’s latest survey results highlighting that 75% of Small/Medium business find that internet marketing is effective. Also of note from the research, in 2014 37% of SMBs state that they’re looking to increase their spend in 2015, whereas the previous year only 21% made the same commitment. Still modest numbers overall (we here at High Position believe that closer to 100% of SMBs can benefit from digital), yet it’s undeniable that confidence in digital is growing!
Next up, it has been reported that Google has lost all-important search share since Firefox switched their default search to Yahoo. Statcounter, when investigating US search shares reports that Google has declined to 75.3% in December from 77.5% in November, conversely Yahoo search has increased from 8% to 10% - which I doubt they’ll be complaining about!
Towards the tail end of the week Google announced that they have improved the functionality of the Knowledge once again, this time including social accounts into the search results. Since the announcement they have released guidance to help developers and webmasters alike markup their websites, making it easier (and more likely) for Google to include this data within search results. Many big brands are seeing this in action already and our own Chris Ainsworth, has just done the same for the High Position website - while we’re waiting for Google to recrawl this data and pull into search, check out his guide on how to implement this for your own website.
LinkedIN this week has continued the theme of most social media companies of late and staked their claim in the “search” end of the market announcing their enhanced search functionality. Among other things, this brings the ability to search one step beyond your contacts (friends of friends), enhanced filter options and more information about search subjects. This is just another step in the fragmentation of search, again cementing LinkedIN as the professional people search, finding the right people faster is crucial for business, whether it’s benefiting your own job search or B2B sales opportunities.
Keeping social networking within the business context we move swiftly onto Facebook and the recent news that they are launching a separate business version of the platform. The aim to help improve productivity in the workplace (a bit different from what Facebook does at the moment!) by providing an instant messaging platform which includes collaborative work features. It’s being tested in the US currently, but it will look and feel like Facebook, and will be “secure” and separate from your “social account.”
Another in a series of native advertising “firsts”, The New York Times features a paid content piece from Google, powered by Google maps and includes copy taken from the NYT’s 36 Hours column, enabling you to “plan your next adventure“. The NYT has been very much at the front of developing its native advertising avenues since launching T Brand Studios, their own inhouse creative team in 2014, with the goal of creating sponsored content that provides great value to the user - as opposed to poor quality advertorials of the past. Google’s content piece here has struck great confidence in this, seen as truly adding to the experience of the original 36 hours content, rather than removing from it.
With Snapchat recently topping 100 million monthly users, and more importantly becoming one of the new homes of the teenage internet user (haven’t you heard, they’re not on Facebook any more!), many brands have been clamoring for the opportunity to advertise to this much coveted demographic. Well, you now have the opportunity to do so - albeit if you have $750,000 to do so. Whilst some have argued that this price tag is far too expensive, McDonald’s, Samsung, Macy’s and Electronic Arts have all been quick to the party. Money well spent? Time will tell.
And our final story of the week: in recapping High Position’s visit to Dublin, Head of Paid Search, Mike Scanlon details the plans for Google’s Adwords Shopping exam which is expected to arrive soon. This makes complete sense as Google Shopping (Product Listing Ads) has been given a huge push over the last 18 months or so, and the exam means another step for Google partner agencies, like ourselves, to reinforce and demonstrate their specialist skills on the Adwords platform.
Think we’ve missed something here or have some news for next week’s Digest? Tweet @highpositionseo with the hashtag #DigitalDigest or let us know in the comments below!