I spoke at an event last week looking at the role of programmatic in VOD and its suitability for building brands in a digital environment.
There were a number of people speaking about creating more brand based measurement, data consolidation, using client site and CRM data and the rise of programmatic as a fundamental future facing model for all media buying.
While I agree that programmatic is best viewed as opportunity trading and currently somewhat disconnected from the planning and brand strategy teams, I was struck by the lack of discussion about the role of attribution technology in aligning the true value of programmatic media with an agreed end conversion point.
While practising for my driving test, my instructor was always spouting jewels of wisdom. He also smoked too much and once nearly drove us into a traffic light but I guess nobody’s perfect.
Anyway, one of the themes that came up again and again was 'defensive driving', which Wikipedia helpfully defines as 'driving to save lives, time, and money, in spite of the conditions around you and the actions of others'.
As a PR, I’ve spent a little time over the years considering how I’d describe my recommended approach to SEO, and I think a similarly 'defensive' approach is what works best for me.
Yesterday, I had a rather heated debate with a fellow online marketer, on one of the most popular topics within SEO at the moment: Namely, the impact of Google+ (and its +1s) on search rankings - or lack of, to be more precise.
Let me start this post with a couple of caveats. First up, whilst I'm very much on record as not being a fan of Google+ (I *may* have called it 'The King's New Clothes of Social Networking' a few times) my opinion about the topic in question is entirely unrelated to this.
I may not be a fan, but I certainly recognise the impressive offering Google have developed in the fight against Facebook. I have a Google Plus profile, I encourage our clients to use it too and I pop on there at least once a week to see what's what.
I mentioned the testing of banner ads in my post on Google's search UI changes yesterday, but such a big change deserves more attention.
In a nutshell, Google is testing banner ads on branded searches for 30 different advertisers, including Virgin America and Crate & Barrel.
I've rounded up the views of several search marketers on the tests being carried out by Google...
Google is continually tweaking its user interface, often most noticeably on search results pages, desktop and mobile.
What motivates these changes? Is every change Google makes motivated by profit, or is this a case of constantly improving the user experience? Or perhaps both?
Here, I'll look at some recent UI changes to search results on mobile and desktop. Please suggest any I may have missed.
Responsive design is one of the hottest trends in web design at the moment as it’s seen as the most effective way of creating a consistent user experience across all devices.
For blogs that rely on social to promote their content it’s very important to have some sort of mobile optimised site as it’s inevitable that a large proportion of social referrals will come through mobile devices.
For small businesses or amateur bloggers a responsive WordPress theme is an excellent option as it allows the site owner to offer users a mobile experience without spending loads of money.
There are many responsive templates available either for free or for a very limited outlay, so I thought it would be useful to round up a few of the more impressive options.
When Google announced at the end of September that Hummingbird had been live for a month or so, many questioned how such a significant change could have happened without it having been detected earlier.
Amit Singhal, Head of Google’s ranking team, talked about Hummingbird being the first time a completely new algorithm had been implemented since 2001 and that it impacted 90% of search queries.
However, the visible impact of this algorithm change has been less significant than many recent algorithm updates, such as the May 2012 Penguin update.
Modern SEO embraces the user journey more than ever before, but it is when we look at multinational businesses that we see the greatest SEO opportunity for performance around today.
Despite the danger of over simplification, I rather like the acronym D.E.A.D. as a reminder on how to approach modern, multi-signalled, SEO.
It's not really dead btw...
WHSmith took its entire website offline yesterday after it found that pornographic eBooks were available through its Kobo e-reader.
Customers trying to access WHSmith.co.uk are greeted with a holding page which states that the retailer is “disgusted by these particular titles” and is taking immediate steps to have them removed.
While this process is on-going the site has been taken offline 'to best protect our customers and the public'. It will come back online once all self-published eBooks have been removed and WHSmith’s is sure that people can no longer access the material.
There was understandable anger that shoppers were exposed to explicit content when they typed ‘daddy’ into its on-site search tool, however it does seem something of an over-reaction to take its website offline in order to fix the problem.
Amazon and Waterstones were also found to be stocking similar titles, and while they’ve expressed shock that the situation has occurred they haven’t taken the same drastic steps as WHSmith.