Author: web_coder |
21 2014 |
Views: 12 |
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When we first start working with a new client, regardless of whether we've worked with that same industry before, we generally have a period of about a week where we're simply digging in and trying to understand the site. It's fantastic when the client is involved in this stage, but that doesn't always happen, as since we're a link agency, we sometimes just get link projects thrown at us and we're told to make them work. This stage is where our team discusses what the client does, what makes them different from their competitors, what they want to see from our work, and what types of sites would be relevant linking partners. There have been times when we have been on crazy deadlines and haven't had the luxury of doing proper research and I can tell you that those projects have not gotten off to a great start for the most part. Even if you can take just a day or so to really do some research before you start trying to do whatever it is that you'll be doing to generate links, it's incredibly beneficial.

So what types of research do we usually do, how do we do them, how long do we spend on each stage, and why?

Site Research:

As much as I hate to admit this, we have had link builders who built some links that made very little sense because they had no idea of what a certain service was. Even now I have to remind my team (and myself) to "go look at the site" when they ask me questions about what they should do to find linking partners for a specific product or service. It's easy to fall on our tendencies to Google everything when we're confused, but getting that info straight from the source is the best way to figure it out. Naturally, I'll have a good look at a site before we even start to talk about doing work for a potential client, but I prefer to have feedback from my entire team because chances are, they'll note something that I will have overlooked. This is the stage when I usually identify site issues that could impact our work. Maybe there's a better page to link to than the one the client has given us? Maybe there's some great content that we can use but the client didn't notify us? Now's the time when we dig in and speak up.

Link Research:

What's in the link profile? What bad things have they done? Seriously, almost all of them have done something bad whether it was intentional or not, so finding that and getting it fixed will help ensure that your efforts don't go wasted. Nine times out of 10, if you ask a client if he or she has done anything naughty, you'll get a hearty no, so go dig around. If you happen to be dealing with a site that has 200 links, all of which seem to be total spam, you may need to clean that up first. If a client wants you to build links to an exact match anchor, then go see what their percentage of that anchor actually is before doing it. A quick overview takes only an hour or so, but for big brands, I like to spend a few days really digging into the profile. For this I use Majestic, Link Research Tools, and Link Risk.


Keyword Research:

Gone are the days where we'd simply figure out which keywords showed the most search volume and those would be our exact match anchors. I'm not saying that we ignore keyword data of course, but we don't use it without logically thinking it through. Many times the client has done this for us, or maybe their SEO team has done it, but we don't always need to do it. What I like to do is figure out which keywords are the popular ones for the industry, compare them to what's actually being said in the site's content, and then use natural variations as anchors. We have some clients who give us the exact anchors that they want, but we're far more successful with the clients who give us general ideas of what they want but leave it up to use and the webmasters we work with to determine the actual anchors used. Generally speaking, when we do the keyword research, we spend about a day on it. We also do it again if the client has any drastically different new content. My current favorite tool for this is Spyfu, but you can use any tool that you like.


Industry Research:

What does the general industry space look like? Sometimes we get clients with niches that are unfamiliar to everyone in our office. Those are the really fun accounts, but learning how to link for them is tricky so we'll read everything we can about them and what they do. It's hard to come up with discovery and content ideas if you have no clue what a client actually does. Usually this takes a day or so for a small site, but it can take up to a week for a very large brand if you have the time to spend. When I do this I set up a lot of Talkwalker and Google alerts for general industry terms so I can see what's happening that's noteworthy.

Competitive Analysis:

What content are the competitors creating? We use this as a guideline for what the industry responds to and we try and figure out how to do something that's distinctive. We don't do too much in the way of competitive backlink analysis (other than whatever we find in our link research stage) because we don't mine competitors' links, but we do like to see what they're blogging about, what other services they have, and what makes our client different. I always set up alerts for the competition just to keep an eye on what they're doing. This is usually ongoing for us but initially, we probably spend about half a day on it.


Content Research:

This is my favorite part of the initial cycle, and it's something that we do often for all clients. Even a quick 15-minute brainstorming session is incredibly beneficial for getting everyone fired up and ready to try something new, so I highly recommend it even if you're comfortable with what you're doing. Our brainstorming comes in different forms: sometimes we do it in person when everyone's in the office and has a free moment, but sometimes I might just generate a big list of ideas and send it out to everyone, or two link builders may have a chat where each is working on a different client and they figure out ideas for their partner. We brainstorm ideas for discovery and we brainstorm ideas for content creation during this stage. Overall we usually spend about a full day at the start of each project on this, but throughout the campaign I'd say that we end up spending another 20 hours a month doing this.

Site Partner Research:

What types of sites would link to the client? What types won't? This is different for every niche. For example, a competitor is probably not the best person to approach for a link unless you happen to have something amazing and different, but generally speaking, we don't ever do that. It's important to think about why someone would link to you and consider what you have to offer. Most sites don't want to link to a resource that they have on their own page. Some industries also seem to offend certain people. I doubt you'd want to contact a mommy blogger and try to get a link to your overseas sex travel site. This can actually be the most time-consuming part for us because we have to examine every idea so closely. I might think that X site won't link to Y site because they are doing the same thing, but one of my team members might point out that X site has a deficiency and might actually link to something very specific on Y's site. It also isn't intuitive for some people to immediately see the problems with approaching certain sites for links simply because our brains don't work the same way, so talking about it out loud is the best idea in most cases.

You should ideally be familiar with all of this before you start to build links no matter how you're building them, as without this kind of knowledge, you're leaving a lot of opportunities on the table and you'll probably end up with less relevant links than you would otherwise. It's critical to recognize that many clients have no idea of what content would do well so they could be sitting on top of some amazing resources. It's your job to find them and point them out and they'll definitely appreciate the extra leg work. After all, you both want the same thing: awesome benefits from your marketing efforts.

SES LondonOptimising Digital Marketing Campaigns with Search, Social and AnalyticsAt SES London (9-11 Feb) you'll get an overview of the latest tools, tips, and tactics in Paid, Owned, Earned, Integrated Media and Business Intelligence to streamline your marketing campaigns in 2015. Register by 31 October to take advantage of Early Bird Rates.

Author: web_coder |
21 2014 |
Views: 12 |
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Gmail is affectingeveryones open rates, including famous bloggers. I recently performed a case study that shows some staggering statistics based on 17 bloggers. Ten of these bloggers didnt survive, and Ill show you why.

As we all know, email marketing determines the life of any blog these days. Unless you are best friends with Google, the chances of high traffic at first is slim. You would be like Batman without hisutility belt if the email list didnt exist!

Knowing this, you should alsounderstand if no one is opening your emails, your traffic will decrease.

So, what affects open rates?

  • Filters (like Gmail Tab System)

  • Boring Subject Lines

  • Timing

  • Frequency

  • Content

All of these determine your open rate, but what if youre doing everything right and youre still seeing low open rates? Then its not your fault or the readers. It may well be Gmails.

You see, in the middle of 2013, it was announced that Gmail would be introducing the Tab System. You now have Primary, Social, and Promotions tabs. You also have the option of adding custom tabs. Based on the content inside of that email, Gmail determines where those emailsgo.

Capture2 How Gmail Defeated 10 Famous Bloggers

Screenshot taken 10/7/2014

So because of this new filtration, millions of bloggers are no longer landing in the inbox like they use to. Theyre landing within the Promotions Tab or the spam folder. Many say this hasnt affected their open rates, which to me is scary. It tells me that your open rates were never high to begin with.

If youre giving away free content and your open rates are below 20%, something is definitelywrong. I understand it happens sometimes, but the average percent should be higher.

Mailchimp states20%-23% is the average open rate among all industries.

How Gmail Defeated 10 Famous Bloggers: A Case Study

I began to do a little research after seeing Gmail make these new changes and wanted to see who exactly survived this new filter system.I wanted to see Gmail fight it out with17 bloggers whohave done well in the blogging world. But only seven would survive.

Bloggers Like The Following Were Included:

  • Michael Hyatt

  • Pat Flynn

  • Jeff Bullas

  • Darren Rowse

  • Jay Baer

  • Amy Porterfield

  • Glenn Allsop

So on September 25th of this year, I did an experiment. I created a brand new Gmail account and started signing up to these blogs. I signed up for these 17 blogs, did the double opt-in, and logged out. I wanted to see what Gmail would do to these bloggers emails. Once the double opt-in was done, I wouldwait awhilebefore re-opening.

I was eager to open the account again. On October 7th, I opened my Gmail account to begin my experiment.

107 emails from these bloggers were sent to this Gmail account.

This is what was found within my Primary Tab:

  • 46 (46%) of emails never made it to my inbox

  • 10 out of 17 bloggers eventually faded into the Promotions Tab

  • 43% of those emails never saw the light of day in the Primary Tab

  • 4 out of 56 (7%) emails had headers within the inbox

  • 42 of these emails had 3 links or less in the content (thats around 41%)

  • 41 (approx. 40%) of these emails didnt have images within them

  • The most popular format looked liked this below:

jeff2 How Gmail Defeated 10 Famous Bloggers

Screenshot October 2014

  • 51 (or approx. 51%) of these emails did not have share buttons within the Primary Tab

Heres the amazing thing, the ones who were in my inbox, stayed in my inbox. Outside of the confirmation emails, the ones who were in my Promotions tab usually stayed there. So that means format is everything when it comes to these filters.

Let me try to explain some of these points and why they happened.

  • 46 (thats 46%) of those emails never made it to my inbox:The reason 46 emails did not make the Primary tab is because they landed into the Promotion Tab. This means you get lost with the other promotion emails like the Lowes, Walmart, and Hobby Lobby types of emails.

  • 10/17 bloggers eventually faded into the Promotions Tab:The reason they faded is because almost ALL confirmation emails land in the Primary. This is one reason why double opt-in is important. Gmail gives you a chance to build a connection with the reader, but for many this is the first/last email anyone ever sees. But after the confirmation email, 10 of these bloggers would fade into the Promotions Tab.

  • 4 out of 56 (thats 7%) emails had headers within the inbox:IfGoogle even smells anything promotional within your email, youre going to the Promotions Tab. The reason being is that friends dont put headers in their email, they simply type and get the message across. Only do businesses/blogs add the header for exposure. I talk more about this at my blog on how headers are killing your open rate.

  • 42 of these emails had 3 links or less in the content(thats around 41%):I believe this to be no accident. Google knows that businesses will put in more links than a normal person would to a friend. Since businesses/bloggers are trying to achieve a high click rate, they embed more links. But in order to land Primary Tabs, 3 and less is best.

  • 41 (approx. 40%) of these emails didnt have images within them:Google is more forgiving when it comes to images within emails, but for these bloggers, they didnt take the chance. By simply writing like a friend would, they hit gold and landed the Primary.

So based off of this, I have created a list of elements that will kill your open rates with Gmail.

The most harmful to least harmful (top to bottom):

  1. Headers

  2. More Than Three Links

  3. Images (Including Share Buttons)

  4. Email Design

Im not saying you can writehorrible content and get away with high open rates, but I amsaying that high quality content can be hidden away within the Promotional Tab because of these new changes Gmail has made. These points do not substitute for the old-fashion, amazing content: instead, they go hand-in-hand.

By writing amazing emails on a consistent basisand linking to amazing content, you can achieve high open rates. Did I mention your email list will grow, too? Yes, this is another great benefit to fabulous content. Soon subject lines wont matter as much. Once the connection is built, and youre known for amazing content, people will open the email because your name is on it.Subject lines are great, dont get me wrong, but consistently wowing your reader is better.

Heres a list of things you may want to copy/paste somewhere, so youll have something to go by on your next email campaign:

  • Keep it short and sweet

  • Limit links to one, maybe two

  • Include as much information about the reader as possible

  • Be consistent with delivery

  • Every email must add value to reader

  • No pictures

  • No sales pitch

  • No RSS

  • Text Form In HTML

  • Amazing subject line

  • Reply to Messages

So understand this: writelike you wouldtoa friend. The reader on your list is precious and you must see them as a dear friend. If not, even Google will detect it.

Im glad that Gmail did this really. Now only amazing bloggers make it to the Primary. Its the ones who are about establishing great content instead of bottom lines. Whats amazing is that the ones who make the most money (most of the time) are making it to the Primary Tab anyway. That may be why the emails were Gmail-proof: the readers were their friends to begin with.

Featured Image:Created by author for Search Engine Journal

 How Gmail Defeated 10 Famous Bloggers

Luke Guy

Luke Guy is an email marketer and blogger. He consults for businesses on how to keep open rates high and how to make their emails most effective.

 How Gmail Defeated 10 Famous Bloggers


 How Gmail Defeated 10 Famous Bloggers

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  • How Gmail Defeated 10 Famous Bloggers - October 21, 2014

Author: web_coder |
21 2014 |
Views: 13 |
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Im very proud to announce the launch of the Portuguese Bing Ads blog for Brazil. The members of the Brazilian Bing Ads team are very pleased to welcome you. Via the blog we want to help you with tips and relevant information so that your campaigns can progressively generate better results for your business and contribute to you achieving your goals, always ensuring a better ROI.

Through our blog we will share the latest major news about Bing Ads in our market, showing everything we're doing to make Bing Ads better for you every day. You can also expect news about industry events, case studies, weekly articles by Bing Ads specialists and content from leading Brazilian industry experts. Stay tuned!

I stress that this is a two-way channel. Please feel free to comment, ask questions and interact with us. We will be happy to assist you. Well pay attention to your comments and work together, building a better Bing Ads.

Warm Regards,

Jane Graziele

Bing Ads Latin America Marketing Lead

Author: web_coder |
21 2014 |
Views: 13 |
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"What is this page about?"

As marketers, helping search engines answer that basic question is one of our most important tasks. Search engines can't read pages like humans can, so we incorporate structure and clues as to what our content means. This helps provide the relevance element of search engine optimization that matches queries to useful results.

Understanding the techniques used to capture this meaning helps to provide better signals as to what our content relates to, and ultimately helps it torank higher in search results. This post explores a series of on-page techniques that not only build upon one another, but can be combined in sophisticated ways.

While Google doesn't reveal the exact details of its algorithm, over the years we've collected evidence from interviews, research papers, US patent filings and observations from hundredsof search marketers to be able to explore these processes. Special thanks to Bill Slawski, whose posts on SEO By the Sea led to much of the research for this work.

As you read, keep in mind these are only some of the ways in whichGoogle could determine on-page relevancy, and they aren't absolute law! Experimenting on your own is always the best policy.

We'll start with the simple, and move to the more advanced.

1. Keyword Usage

In the beginning, there were keywords. All over the page.

The concept was this: If your page focused on a certain topic, search engines would discover keywords in important areas. These locations included the title tag, headlines, alt attributes of images, and throughout in the text. SEOs helped their pages rank by placing keywords in these areas.

Even today, we start with keywords, and it remains the most basic form of on-page optimization.

More than keywords: 7 concepts of advanced on-page seo

Most on-page SEO tools still rely on keyword placement to grade pages, and while it remains a good place to start, research shows its influence has fallen.

While it's important to ensure your page at a bare minimum contains the keywords you want to rank for, it is unlikely thatkeyword placement by itself will have much of an influence on your page's ranking potential.


It's not keyword density, it's term frequencyinverse document frequency (TF-IDF).

Google researchers recently described TF-IDF as "long used to index web pages" and variations of TF-IDF appear as a component in several well-known Google patents.

TF-IDF doesn't measure how often a keyword appears, but offers a measurement of importance by comparing how often a keyword appears compared to expectations gathered from a larger set of documents.

If we compare the phrases "basket" to "basketball player" in Google's Ngram viewer, we see that "basketball player" is a more rare, while "basket" is more common. Based on this frequency, we might conclude that "basketball player" is significant on a page that contains that term, while the threshold for "basket" remains much higher.

More than keywords: 7 concepts of advanced on-page seo

For SEO purposes, when we measure TF-IDF's correlation with higher rankings, it performs only moderately better than individual keyword usage. In other words, generating a high TF-IDF score by itself generally isn't enough to expect much of an SEO boost. Instead, we should think of TF-IDF as an important component of other more advanced on-page concepts.

3. Synonyms and Close Variants

With over 6 billion searches per day, Google has a wealth of information to determine what searchers actually mean when typing queries into a search box. Google's own research shows that synonyms actually play a role in up to 70% of searches.

To solve this problem, search engines possess vast corpuses of synonyms and close variants for billions of phrases, which allows them to match content to queries even when searchers use different words than your text. An example is the query dog pics, which can mean the same thing as:

Dog Photos Pictures of Dogs Dog Pictures Canine Photos Dog Photographs

On the other hand, the query Dog Motion Picture means something else entirely, and it's important for search engines to know the difference.

From an SEO point of view, this means creating content using natural language and variations, instead of employing the same strict keywords over and over again.

More than keywords: 7 concepts of advanced on-page seo

Using variations of your main topics can also add deeper semantic meaning and help solve the problem of disambiguation, when the same keyword phrase can refer to more than one concept. Plant and factory together might refer to a manufacturing plant, whereas plant and shrub refer to vegetation.

Today, Google's Hummingbird algorithm also uses co-occurrence to identify synonyms for query replacement.

Under Hummingbird, co-occurrence is used to identify words that may be synonyms of each other in certain contexts while following certain rules according to which, the selection of a certain page in response to a query where such a substitution has taken place has a heightened probability.

Bill Slawski - SEO by the Sea

4. Page Segmentation

Where you place your words on a page is often as important as the words themselves.

Each web page is made up of different partsheaders, footers, sidebars, and more. Search engines have long worked to determine the most important part of a given page. Both Microsoft and Google hold several patents suggesting content in the more relevant sections of HTML carry more weight.

Content located in the main body text likely holds more importance than text placed in sidebars or alternative positions. Repeating text placed in boilerplate locations, or chrome, runs the risk of being discounted even more.

More than keywords: 7 concepts of advanced on-page seo

Page segmentation becomes significantly more important as we move toward mobile devices, which often hide portions of the page. Search engines want to serve users the portion of your pages that are visible and important, so text in these areas deserves the most focus.

To take it a step further, HTML5 offers addition semantic elements such as <article>, <aside>, and <nav>, which can clearly define sections of your webpage.

5. Semantic Distance and Term Relationships

When talking about on-page optimization, semantic distance refers to the relationships between different words and phrases in the text. This differs from the physical distance between phrases, and focuses on how terms connect within sentences, paragraphs, and other HTML elements.

How do search engines know that "Labrador" relates to "dog breeds" when the two phrases aren't in the same sentence?

Search engines solve this problem by measuring the distance between different words and phrases within different HTML elements. The closer the concepts are semantically, the closer the concepts may be related. Phrases located in the same paragraph are closer semantically than phrases separated by several blocks of text.

More than keywords: 7 concepts of advanced on-page seo

Additionally, HTML elements may shorten the semantic distance between concepts, pulling them closer together. For example, list items can be considered equally distant to one another, and "the title of a document may be considered to be close to every other term in document".

Now is a good time to mention Schema markup provides a way to semantically structure portions of your text in a manner that explicitly define relationship between terms.

The great advantage schema offers is that it leaves no guesswork for the search engines. Relationships are clearly defined. The challenge is it requires webmasters to employ special markup. So far, studies show low adoption. The rest of the concepts listed here can work on any page containing text.

6. Co-occurrence and Phrase-Based Indexing

Up to this point, we've discussed individual keywords and relationships between them. Search engines also employ methods of indexing pages based on complete phrases, and also ranking pages on the relevance of those pages.

We know this process as phrase-based indexing.

What's most interesting about this process is not how Google determines the important phrases for a webpage, but how Google can use these phrases to rank a webpage based on how relevant they are.

Using the concept of co-occurrence, search engines know that certain phrases tend to predictother phrases. If your main topic targets "John Oliver," this phrase often co-occurs with other phrases like "late night comedian," "Daily Show," and "HBO." A page that contains these related terms is more likely to be about "John Oliver" than a page that doesn't contain related terms.

More than keywords: 7 concepts of advanced on-page seo

Add to this incoming links from pages with related, co-occurring phrases and you've given your page powerful contextual signals.

7. Entity Salience

Looking to the future, search engines are exploring ways of using relationships between entities, not just keywords, to determine topical relevance.

One technique, published as a Google research paper, describes assigning relevance through entity salience.

Entity salience goes beyond traditional keyword techniques, like TF-IDF, for finding relevant terms in a document by leveraging known relationships between entities. An entity is anything in the document that is distinct and well defined.

The stronger an entity's relationship to other entities on the page, the more significant that entity becomes.

More than keywords: 7 concepts of advanced on-page seo

In the diagram above, an article contains the topics Iron Man, Tony Stark, Pepper Potts and Science Fiction. The phrase "Marvel Comics" has a strong entity relationship to all these terms. Even it only appears once, it's likely significant in the document.

On the other hand, even though the phrase "Cinerama" appears multiple times (because the film showed there), this phrase has weaker entity relationships, and likely isn't as significant.

Practical tips for better on-page optimization

As we transition from keyword placement to more advanced practices of topic targeting, it's actually easy to incorporate these concepts into our content. While most of us don't have the means available to calculate semantic relationships and entity occurrences, there are a number of simple steps we can take when crafting optimized content:

  1. Keyword research forms your base. Even though individual keywords themselves are no longer enough to form the foundation of your content, everything begins with good keyword research. You want to know what terms you are targeting, the relative competition around those keywords, and the popularity of those terms. Ultimately, your goal is to connect your content with the very keywords people type and speak into the search box.

  2. Research around topics and themes. Resist researching single keywords, andinstead move towards exploring your keyword themes. Examine the secondary keywords related to eachkeyword. When people talk about your topic, what words do they use to describe it? What are the properties of your subject? Use these supporting keyword phrases as cast members to build content around your central theme.

  3. When crafting your content, answer as many questions as you can. Good content answers questions, and semantically relevant content reflects this. A top ranking for any search query means the search engine believes your content answers the question best. As you structure your content around topics and themes, make sure you deserve the top ranking by answering the questions and offeringa user experience better than the competition.

  4. Use natural language and variations. During your keyword research process, it's helpful to identify other common ways searchers refer to your topic, and include these in your content when appropriate. Semantic keyword research is often invaluable to this process.

  5. Place your important content in the most important sections. Avoid footers and sidebars for important content. Don't try to fool search engines with fancy CSS or javascript tricks. Your most important content should go in the places where it is most visible and accessible to readers.

  6. Structure your content appropriately. Headers, paragraphs, lists, and tables all provide structure to content sothat search engines understand your topic targeting. A clear webpage contains structure similar to a good university paper. Employ proper introductions, conclusions, topics organized into paragraphs, spelling and grammar, and cite your sources properly.

At the end of the day, we don't need a super computer to make our content better, or easier to understand. If we write like humans for humans, our content goes a long way in becoming optimized for search engines. What are your best tips for on-page SEO and topic targeting?

Special thanks to Dawn Shepard, who provided the images for this post.

Author: web_coder |
21 2014 |
Views: 9 |
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Posted by Dr. Naoyuki Kitamura, CEO, Japans Medical Network Systems Inc. Cross-posted on the Google Cloud Platform blog

Japan faces a critical shortage of radiologists. Although major hospitals are well equipped to conduct scans, the scarcity of experts to read them and give patients their diagnoses means that people, especially those in rural areas, often have to wait a long time to discover their results. This can have tragic consequences for people with serious conditions.

To address this shortage and help people get accurate diagnoses faster, Medical Network Systems Inc. (MNES) in Hiroshima started running a remote diagnosis service in 2000. Rather than waiting for patients to come to hospitals, we bring the radiology equipment to them. This teleradiology service has helped combat the challenge of getting scanning technology to people in remote areas; however, we are still short on specialists that can read the scans, and we wanted to find ways to give access to patients in areas without specialists.

Last year, our team started using Google Cloud Platform to power our remote-diagnosis systems. Patients used to be given a hard copy of their scan to take to a doctor or specialist. Moving the process to the cloud speeds everything up. All of our buses are equipped with CT scanning machines, so our technicians upload images and scans right from the bus. Specialists can then log into the system from wherever theyre working and see the scans and diagnose the patient remotely.

Reading scans is a very specialized process. Radiologists must examine lots of images and scans in a very particular sequence, and its important that this process isnt laggy or slow. One of the benefits of using Googles services is that they can handle massive volumes of information. Google App Engine processes the images and data in the right sequence and enables us to cross reference patient inputs with existing radiographic and pathological information.[embedded content]
Instead of waiting for a few days or a week for a diagnosis, which was the usual turnaround for our teleradiology service, patients get their results within a few hours. And its not just our patients benefiting from remote diagnosis; enabling our radiologists to work from anywhere has meant that many of our female specialists are able to stay in the workforce diagnosing scans while working from home and taking care of their kids. With so few radiologists in Japan, this flexibility helps us keep skilled technicians in the workforce.

Were optimistic about the potential for cloud-based technology to enrich our understanding of pathological issues and believe it signals a new chapter for the healthcare industry by removing geographical barriers between patients and doctors.

Author: web_coder |
21 2014 |
Views: 6 |
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OuijaSnapchat launched their first in-app ad today and with it came the all-to-familiar, we hope this will save us, apology.

This one might be my all-time favorite:

This weekend were placing an advertisement in Recent Updates for Snapchatters in the United States. Its the first time weve done anything like this because its the first time weve been paid to put content in that space. Its going to feel a little weird at first, but were taking the plunge.

The app caters to young users and it has a reputation for naughty behavior, so I get the thinly veiled, double entendres but still. . . .

An advertisement will appear in your Recent Updates from time to time, and you can choose if you want to watch it. No biggie. It goes away after you view it or within 24 hours, just like Stories.

Translation: we know you hate ads and youre going to be mad at us but its going to disappear on its own so dont make a big deal out of it.

Of course, the way most social media networks run, like Twitter and Facebook, ads disappear pretty quickly anyway and without any fancy app magic.

Also, no biggie? Im expecting them to follow with everything is okie dokie.

We wont put advertisements in your personal communication things like Snaps or Chats. That would be totally rude. We want to see if we can deliver an experience thats fun and informative, the way ads used to be, before they got creepy and targeted.

Wow, now were going for the throat modern ads are creepy. Funny, because the first ad on Snapchat is for the movie Ouija and its the definition of creepy. I get that theyre using creepy in a different way, but I still think it was an ironic choice of words.

Understandably, a lot of folks want to know why were introducing advertisements to our service. The answer is probably unsurprising we need to make money.

Two points for honesty. Now if only they could have said it without the apology. Heres the thing Snapchat, you want the ad money but you want everyone to think youre taking the money begrudgingly? Oh please.

Just once, I want to see an app get excited about advertising. You have the ability to make it cool. You could have disguised that ad as a story from someone in the film. You could have launched an immersive visual puzzle. Thats what Universal is doing on YouTube, so why did you settle for a simple movie trailer as your first ad on Snapchat?

Predictably, the ad placement didnt go over well. Some objected to the idea of advertising. Some were more upset by the content than the idea of advertising and other simply said, nice try

No matter how many people complain, its still a win for Universal Pictures because the Snapchat ad is doing just what a good advertisement is supposed to do get us all talking.

Author: web_coder |
21 2014 |
Views: 6 |
Comments (0)

Tivo logoHow many of you simple watch TV while youre watching TV? Show of hands.

That looks about right. The Second Annual TiVo Multitasking and Social TV Survey says that more than half of the people they studied multitask while watching TV. Thats a huge increase over last years 36%.

If youre a TV producer, dont worry. 47% said that even though theyre doing other things at the same time, their primary focus is on the television. . . or so they say.

Top TV-time activities:

  • 74% browse the internet

  • 73% read or send email

  • 71% send text messages

TV fans also love connecting with their favorite shows and actors online. 61% of respondents said theyve searched the internet for information about a show they like and 47% liked a shows official Facebook page. Funny thing, they arent doing either of these things while theyre actually watching TV. Only 5% of TV multitaskers did anything show related while the show was on.

Commercial breaks are a whole different story.

If youve invested a ton of money into a TV commercial for your brand or client. . . you can start worrying because only 29% of TV viewers said they stay and watch the commercials during the commercial break.

The majority of folks use commercial breaks as bathroom breaks which is funny because DVR owners can stop a show whenever they want so they can go to the bathroom but 81% still said they wait until the commercial break to go.


78% use commercial breaks as an opportunity to stock up on snacks and drinks. They also enjoy talking with others in the house. After that, we head to the internet.

Though 74% of people said they surf the internet during the show, only 44% surf while the commercials are on and 38% use that time to catch up on social media.

Heres something to think about. Do you post to Facebook and Twitter in the evening? I know a large number of companies stop all social media activity when they walk out the door at five. But with so many TV viewers checking social in the evening, maybe you need to rethink your posting schedule.

Here are a few more multitasking facts:

  • The smartphone (78%) and the laptop (72%) are the two most popular devices used while watching TV.

  • 25% of those surveyed said searching the Internet for information about a program is the top activity that increases their enjoyment of TV; reading episode recaps and reviews comes in second at 10%

  • Only 22% reported ever posting on social media sites about shows they watch; 5% of all respondents do this a few times a week or more.

  • Of those who do post to social media about their TV faves, the majority (71% ) selected Facebook as the site they most commonly post about TV; Twitter came in a distant second with 24%

Bottom line: TV time is a good time to reach consumers as long as you can reach them on mobile. What are your customers doing between the hours of 8 and 11 pm?

Author: web_coder |
21 2014 |
Views: 7 |
Comments (0)

As Google's Hummingbird update places more weight on social signals for search rankings, Google+ could become more important for marketers looking to boost SEO.

In an SES Denver panel discussion titled "Insights Into Future Search Trends," Merry Morud, social advertising director for aimClear, said that social signals have replaced links in importance for SEO. "In the old days of SEO, link-building was the ultimate, but with social, SEO becomes democratized, more of an aggregate of symbols and authority."

Because of these changes in the way search is ranked, Google+ might become a more important tool than Facebook for marketers looking to see a rise in their rankings. "Google+ is not a joke," said Morud. "It's not going away. If you are not active in Google+, start now. Google gets its purest social signals in Google+, and they can often impact SEO more than Facebook."

And as advertisers see recommendations from Facebook count for less in terms of social signals in search, their ads on the platform could be further impacted by rampant "accidental clicks" on mobile, which could lead to inaccurate data.

"For social ad placements in mobile, Facebook creates desktop, mobile, and Right-Rail ads, but they heavily weight for mobile views," said Morud. The problem with the uneven weighting is that "accidental clicks happen a lot. There's a lot of discrepancy between clicks and actual website visits." For example, one of Morud's clients found that of Facebook's reported 850 ad clicks, only four came from desktop, which indicates that many of the clicks may have happened by mistake. The discrepancy, according to Morud, could be attributed to what she termed "fat finger syndrome," or accidental clicks that don't actually result in page views.

To manage this, Cindy Krum, founder and chief executive (CEO) of MobileMoxie, encouraged Facebook advertisers to test ads across devices before pushing live, because many ads are ineffective on mobile. As an example, she used Stuart Weitzman's "Design Your Own Loafers" landing page, which offered users an interactive design experience. However, "Facebook mobile couldn't handle Ajax and javascript," so users were abandoning the page when it wouldn't load. "Test, test, test," Krum said, "if you're paying for Facebook ads expecting to be shown to mobile users."

These problems downloading ads on mobile and the sheer volume of ads on Facebook could be driving users toward Google+. "Facebook is getting too busy," Morud said. "People are outgrowing [the platform]. Google+ being ad-free is going to be a plus for them."

Now that social signals count toward SEO rankings, advertisers can no longer afford to ignore their presence on Google Plus, according to Morud. "Google is going to make social signals from Google Plus so important that they can't be denied," she said.

SES LondonOptimising Digital Marketing Campaigns with Search, Social and AnalyticsAt SES London (9-11 Feb) you'll get an overview of the latest tools, tips, and tactics in Paid, Owned, Earned, Integrated Media and Business Intelligence to streamline your marketing campaigns in 2015. Register by 31 October to take advantage of Early Bird Rates.

Author: web_coder |
21 2014 |
Views: 5 |
Comments (0)

Google has updated its search engine algorithms in an attempt to restrict piracy websites appearing high in its search rankings.

The update will mean piracy sites are less likely to appear when people search for music, films, and other copyrighted content.

The decision to roll out the search changes was announced in a refreshed versionof aHow Google Fights Piracy report, which was originally published in September 2013.

However, this year's updated report features a couple of developments, including changes to ad formats and an improved Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) demotion search signal.

The move is likely to be a result of criticism received from the entertainment industry, which has argued that illegal sites should be "demoted" in search results because they enable people to find sites to download media illegally.

The biggest change in the Google search update will be new ad formats in search results on queries related to music and movies that help people find legitimate sources of media.

For example, for the relatively small number of queries for movies that include terms like "download," "free," or "watch," Google has instead begun listing legal services such as Spotify and Netflix in a box at the top of the search results.

"We're also testing other ways of pointing people to legitimate sources of music and movies, including in the right-hand panel on the results page," Google added.

"These results show in the U.S. only, but we plan to continue investing in this area and to expand it internationally."

An improved DMCA demotion signal in Google search is also being rolled out as part of the refresh, which down-ranks sites for which Google has received a large number of valid DMCA notices.

"We've now refined the signal in ways we expect to visibly affect the rankings of some of the most notorious sites. This update will roll out globally starting next week," Google said, adding that it will also be removing more terms from autocomplete, based on DMCA removal notices.

The new measures might be welcomed by the entertainment industry, but are likely to encourage more people to use legal alternatives such as Spotify and Netflix, rather than buying more physical media.

This article was originally published on the Inquirer.

SES LondonOptimising Digital Marketing Campaigns with Search, Social and AnalyticsAt SES London (9-11 Feb) you'll get an overview of the latest tools, tips, and tactics in Paid, Owned, Earned, Integrated Media and Business Intelligence to streamline your marketing campaigns in 2015. Register by 31 October to take advantage of Early Bird Rates.

Author: web_coder |
21 2014 |
Views: 5 |
Comments (0)

Google reported third-quarter profits of $2.8 billion (1.7 billion) last week, down 5 percent from the same period a year earlier and falling short of analyst expectations.

While revenues increased by 20 percent year-on-year to $16.52 billion, Google's profits took a battering, which has been credited to increased spending at the company.

The firm splashed out on almost 3,000 new employees, while Google's real estate costs - covering its data centers and hardware inventory - increased by 37 percent year-on-year to $3.35 billion.

Google chief financial officer Patrick Pichette said, "Google had another strong performance this quarter, with revenue up 20 percent year-on-year. We continue to be excited about the growth in our advertising and emerging businesses."

There was some good news hidden away in Google's earnings report, however. The firm revealed that average ad prices, or "cost-per-click," in the third quarter dipped by just 2 percent from last year, the smallest decrease the firm has reported in three years, and down from a 6 percent dive in Q2.

Google's ad prices have been sinking owing to the growing popularity of smartphones over laptops and desktop PCs.

Marco Veremis, chief executive at Upstream said, "Google's lackluster earnings in Q3 shows the struggle to bring increased mobile advertising revenue is going to go on a while longer.

"Its strategy in most markets of letting partner companies alter the Android OS has led to Google losing grip on that revenue stream."

Google also announced that the total number of paid ads expanded by 17 percent in the third quarter, down from the 25 percent climb announced last quarter.

The company also revealed that it had appointed Omid Kordestani as its new chief business officer, replacing Nikesh Arora who had left to join Japan's Softbank.

Google's third-quarter earnings announcement comes just days after unveilingAndroid 5.0 Lollipop, the Nexus 9, and the Nexus 6 smartphone.

This article was originally published on the Inquirer.

SES LondonOptimising Digital Marketing Campaigns with Search, Social and AnalyticsAt SES London (9-11 Feb) you'll get an overview of the latest tools, tips, and tactics in Paid, Owned, Earned, Integrated Media and Business Intelligence to streamline your marketing campaigns in 2015. Register by 31 October to take advantage of Early Bird Rates.

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