A Digital Marketing Journey Coming to an End

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Mkt 363: A Digital Marketing Course

Over the last couple of months I have learned a tremendous amount about digital marketing and website design. We’ve discussed everything from advertising methods to simply changing the theme setting on our WordPress sites. What started out as an extremely simple black and white blogging page has turned into a colorful page, with many posts, pages, images, and even a playable audio track. The on and off site SEO for this page evolved over the course of the past couple of months. This is partially due to what I’ve learned from my professor, as well as what my colleagues in the class have taught me. Sadly my digital marketing journey is coming to a close.

Looking Back

I may not have won the overall class ranking, but that doesn’t mean that this project was a failure. I am walking away from this class with more knowledge of the subject then most people in my position possess. Not only did this class teach me about the digital marketing field, it also provided me with a valuable tool to use later on in life when searching for employment. This page is a great example of my work, and it will be very valuable to keep updated and running in the future.

Couldn’t Have Done it Without the Classmates

At this time I would like to take the time to thank everyone in the class, as well as the professor. Obviously the professor was responsible for initially teaching us much of the knowledge that we now possess, however I also learned valuable things along the way from other students. My webpage would not have been as successful or as creative as it is without the help of the individuals that sat around me and that were constantly looking up my rankings to keep me updated on my position. Many students seemed to be very concerned about my ranking on page 1. On any given day I would have students coming to me and either asking me for help, or sharing new ideas with me to help better my site. These types of students are just as responsible for the creation of my site as I am.

Categories: Digital Marketing

Ways to Help Create Effective Display Ads

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What is Display Advertising?

Display Advertising is advertising done online. This can include advertisements such as text, images, videos, and audio. These advertisements are targeted towards people with specific interests. They appear to users, on webpages, based on what the users search history may be. When you visit sites and are shopping, or looking for something, the sites store cookies in your browser. Using these cookies, different display ads are chosen to show on websites so that users are viewing.

Tips to Improve Ad Performance

There are of course different ways to go about improving how your ad performs. In other words, things that you can work on to make sure that your ad draws attention and generates clicks. Here is a brief listing of some tips that you can ensure you work on to improve performance.

  • When using images and/or colorful text displays make sure that your color scheme is appealing to the eye. Don’t choose dull colors that don’t draw any attention, but don’t choose horrific, bright colors that clash with each other and cause the user to look away. Pick colors that complement each other. Pick colors that complement with the product being advertised.
  • Don’t limit yourself to a certain set of designs or ad types. Explore different ad types, designs that display your content in an effective, clear manner. The ad shouldn’t look cluttered. Sometimes a video is to much, in some occasions a simple image will suffice.
  • Many advertising sites have ad templates. These are templates that are created in order to make things simpler for you. The templates that are offered provide you with a variety of different designs that are proven to work. Use these templates in order to simplify your process. If you use these templates correctly then they will be very useful when creating ads for your campaign.
  • Images. Don’t simply google something and take the first image you see and use it in your ad. The best thing to do when creating ads for a campaign is to create your own images. There are free websites online that allow you to create images, or you can choose to spend some money and download software such as Photoshop, etc. As an advertiser, custom images look better then copying something else.
  • Display ads that are based off of already existing text ads are very important. This allows the user to click on the ad and be directed to your text ad that contains more information.

The above information as derived from Google itself. Click here to be taken to that information.

Categories: Digital Marketing

Backlinking makes up 66% of the Google ranking algorithm – Offsite SEO

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Backlinking?

Backlinking refers to an incoming hyperlink from one webpage to another website. This means that you are linking your site to other sites by placing hyperlinks to your page on other sites. You can either place the hyper links yourself in comments on blog posts, YouTube videos, or social media, or the owner of the other site can place your hyperlink for you. Linking such as this provides you with significant page rank and creates authority for your page. It creates a web presence and makes your site noticeable. It was stated in a previous post that onsite SEO makes up 33% of the google algorithm that ranks your page. Offsite SEO makes up the other 66%. This percentage is based off of how well you connect your page to other relevant pages.

Common Backlinking Methods:

  • 2-way link exchange: This is very common and simple. This is performed between two people who are owners of different pages. You simply take your website URL and swap it with another individuals. By this I mean that you incorporate someone else’s URL into your page and they incorporate yours. This links the two of your pages together.
  • 3-way link exchange: This exchange is more beneficial then the simple 2-way link. This is performed by swapping URL’s in a triangle shape. For example I give my URL to Mark to post, Mark gives his to Joe, and Joe give his to me. Mark posts my URL but I do not post his. This method is less likely to come across as spamming.
  • Profile Linking: This method involves creating a profile on social networking sites, or forum boards. On the “About Me” page you must include your URL.
  • Article/Blog Creation: Using this method involves creating your won authentic work and going to blogging sites and creating your own posts on these sites. You submit your posts and leave a link back to your own page via the post.
  • Commenting: The commenting method is simple. You locate blogs or posts on relevant sites and leave a comment on those posts. This comment can be anything from complimenting the original poster, to picking out a flaw. Either way, you leave your URL in the comment so that the other users are able to come and check out your work.

Not all backlinks are equally beneficial. Some sites are going to create a stronger, more relevant backlink for you. The more reliable the site is the stronger, and more beneficial this will be for you.

This information was given to me by my professor, Jeremy Sutton.

Click here for the powerpoint containing the information.

Categories: Digital Marketing

How to Create Good Onsite SEO

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What do I Mean by Onsite SEO?

Onsite SEO is any code or data that sits on your physical website. You want to create a website that looks appealing to the eye, organized, and flows naturally around specific keywords. Onsite does not play a huge role in Googles overall algorithm to rank your site, only 33% of the algorithm to be exact. However, that 33% is enough for the onsite SEO to hinder you and allow your site to rank poorly, or not at all. To rank well you need to focus your site around specific keywords. This is onsite, positioning all of your content around the keywords that you have chosen.

Essentials for Onsite SEO

  • Title Tag: The title tag shows up at the top of the page on the tab that you have open in your browser. The title tag is also the title of the site that you click on when you are searching on Google. It initially shows up in blue, however after you click the tag it turns to purple from then on out.
  • Meta Tag: Also known as the description tag, this is the small description, a sentence or two, that shows up underneath the title tag when things are Google searched.
  • Link Anchor Text: When you hover your cursor over any of the above tags on the google search screen the link anchor text shows that websites URL.

How to Create Onsite SEO and Make it Work

Your title tag should contain your keyword for that page/post. It is very important that your keyword appear in the title tag. The meta tag should also contain the keyword multiple times. Do not over use the keyword, however it should be touched upon multiple times and a description should be given. Your URL, link anchor text, should also contain your keyword. The final part of your URL should be your keyword. The most important part of making your onsite SEO effective is the usage of your keyword. The most efficient way to create your title tag is to start with your keyword. Make sure that you do not use the same word more then once. If you misuse any of the tags your site could become labeled as spam. This will only work against you. Another important factor when it comes to onsite SEO is to not use the same keyword for more then one site. This especially links to your link anchor text. It’s important that you do not use the same keyword for more then one page because it would show up in more then one URL.

Onsite SEO also applies to the content that you include on your page. By this I mean that what you include on your pages, and on your posts is also very important. Keyword usage is important when it comes to content, however you can’t simply over use the keywords. The keyword usage within the content on a page should not exceed 4%. It’s very important that you use a combination of your keyword and relevant, important information along with it. Overuse of your keyword will result in the site not ranking well.

The above information was derived from the information provided to me by my Professor, Jeremy Sutton.

Click here to view the powerpoint presentation.

Categories: Digital Marketing

What’s the Deal with Keyword Research?

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What is Keyword Research?

If you have any hope of ranking your website high up in the google ranks you need to be somewhat aware of keyword research. Keyword research is very important when it comes to online search marketing. Not only will keywords help you rank higher on Google for when people type in that word, but if you are looking to make money, you need to research what keywords are valuable for you to target. Keyword Research involves using an outside tool, such as the Google keyword planner. This tool allows you to search for a keyword and see statistics about that specific word. These statistics tell you how well that keyword may work for your campaign.

Why is Keyword Research Important?

Gaining visitors on your site is important, however if you are looking to make money, it’s more important that you gain the correct visitors. To ensure that you have the correct visitors you must use keyword research to help you plan what keywords to focus on. Using tools such as the keyword planner can help show the history of the word, ex. clicks per day, as well as make future predictions about the keyword. By researching which keywords generate the most clicks you can make a better attempt at planning which keywords will generate the most views, and possibly the most money.

By using a tool such as the Google keyword planner you can also generate new keywords that you may not have thought of before. This specific tool provides a list of words that are related to a certain word or phrase. By this I mean that the keyword planner helps to find new words associated with the original idea. This can help you as a marketer broaden the horizon of your keyword list. Knowing which keywords to single in on for your specific product or service is important. If you choose keywords that do not correctly relate to your product then you will generate the incorrect traffic flow. This means that you will not generate as much money due to the missing out of sales.

The above image was taken from https://moz.com/blog/illustrating-the-long-tail. Click the image to be taken to the site.

The Two Types of Keywords

Popular keywords are the types of words that you would use to generate a broad search. For example if you are looking for a movie theater, you would google “Movie Theater”. This is a very common thing to be searched. If you are a movie theater it would be great to focus your resources on the “Movie Theater” keyword. The flaw with that plan is simple. Only one theater can own that top spot. That is a very broad term to search, it will generate a large list to look over. If you are in charge of marketing that theater you are going to want to target more specific keywords.

Long Tail keywords are these more specific keywords. Following the same example you are looking for a movie theater located in your home town, say you live in Dearborn, that is showing Jack Reacher. This new search would be more specific, “Movie Theater near Dearborn showing Jack Reacher”. This keyword is going to be more beneficial to focus on because it will generate more traffic that is specific to what you are offering.

Ever Thought About Becoming a Google Partner?

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What is it?

Google Partners is a program run by Google for ad agencies. It allows you to take tests and become certified in certain fields and areas in digital marketing, allowing you to be labeled as a “Partner” of Google. By becoming a partner you receive a “badge” on Adwords that shows you are a Google partner. This provides with a higher credibility and skill base when looking for jobs or clients. Being a Google partner also provides you with access to more tools, and trainings by Google to farther your career.

How?

To become a Google partner you must pass 2 Adwords certification tests. There are 6 tests to choose from,

Each test is on a different topic and each topic is clearly stated. In order to take the tests over if you fail you must wait 7 days to retake them. To pass each test you must score above an 80%. For the top 3 tests you are given 120 minutes for completion. The bottom 3 tests only provide you with 90 minutes.

Studying?

If you click any of the test names from the above selection you will be directed to the Google Adwords site and be provided with the study guides for each of the individual tests. I have also stumbled upon some useful study/practice tests online. The questions for the Adwords exams are always changing, however taking practice tests online could be useful in preparing you for the types of questions that will be asked. Below links will be listed to redirect you to different practice tests that you may take.

WP Links Page Plugin

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Ranking Through Social Media and Guest Blogging

Being new to website design I am constantly striving to find new ways to rank my page. After all, I am creating this website as a PAGE RANK project for a class I am participating in. I’ve created social networking sites to link to my page, including Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. This seems to be the simple, easy, beginner methods. So far this seems to be working for me as I have continuously been placed on page one. I created new user pages for each of these sites and specifically dedicated them to my website. I also posted links to my website and information about my topics on my own personal social media pages, simply to get my links out there and generate more hype about my site.

I’m working to build content on my site as well, but content isn’t everything. Guest Blogs have been a major step in my ranking. The concept is new to me, but a fellow classmate approached me with the idea and ever since we have all been guest blogging and including each others work on our pages. Not only does guest blogging add content to our pages, it also places links to all of our websites on each others pages. Through guest blogging we have each back linked to another students page in some fashion.

WP Links Page

This may not be new to most people, however I recently stumbled upon a new plugin. WP Links Page allows you to permanently share links to other pages on your home page. URL’s are displayed for the websites you are linking to, along with a screenshot of that page. Guest blogging is useful, however the link to a fellow bloggers website continuously moves up and down your page the more blogs that you add. This plugin keeps the specified links permanently posted to the widgets on the side of your page. Attached to these links are screenshots of that links page, these screenshots continuously update to always display a current representation of the page.

I have since shared this plugin idea with my fellow classmates in order to help build their websites as well.

Below is a display of how the websites will be displayed on the page:

Directory?? Isn’t That For Old People?

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A guest wrote this article. Written by Bryce Tubbs from http://iantubbs.com. The topic today is on “Directories?” This is part of his three part guest blogging project with this website. The article starts off:

What is a Directory? Isn’t that for old people?

mkt-363

Directories are human-powered, and editors determine how good the site is and chooses to include them. The websites are set up in categories and then users can seek out rather than websites. the main distinction is WHO goes to find the data. In a directory a user finds the data. While on a search engine a spider finds the data.

Directories are starting to become old news. However the backlink still counts, and Google values directory backlinks very highly. Also the fact that they are getting old is a plus for some businesses. For example if your clients are elderly a directory could give you many potential leads, since mostly older people use sites like Yellow Pages which is a directory.

What’s the difference between a search engine and directories. A search engine uses software called spiders to go read millions of Articles and return the most relevant info. The spiders are kind of like a librarian who would ask you the book you were looking for and would go help you find the most relevant book among all the shelves. Whereas a directory is like the New York Times. Then the journalist submit their writing to an editor and the editor decides to include it in an area with similar journal entries.

Also Directories can:

  • Increase Traffic
  • Signals Domain Authority
  • Crawl and index rate. Google crawls & indexes sites on directories before it crawls and indexes a site that isn’t on a directory

If you liked this intro check out our other articles as http://iantubbs.com Thanks for reading!!

Social Media. What They Won’t Tell You about SEO’s Adopted Sibling

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This article was written by a guest this week. Written by Bryce Tubbs from http://iantubbs.com. The topic today is on Maximizing off-site backlinks. This is part of his three part guest blogging project with this website. The article starts off:

7 years ago if you told a SEO agency that social media is an essential step to SEO, you would have been fired, Now it’s common knowledge. Social media is all about keeping connections thriving, and Google likes websites that make people feel connected. Social media has many applications to SEO. First off it can generate awareness of your website. It can be used to direct traffic to your site (improves your page rank b/c Google tracks how many people go to your website). Also it can be used to leave comments with your backlinks included. When thinking about your SEO strategy social media can’t be ignored.

Did you know that social media profiles rank extremely high in search engines. This is due to them being a paid on an authoritative website (Facebook for example). What this means is that if you’re just starting out, your Facebook profile could be on page 1 while your actual website is on page 5. That is a big difference in traffic when just starting out.

So which Social media platforms should I implement?

The short answer is that it depends on your business. A more thorough explanation would be if you are a blogger to use Facebook, Linkedin, and a new one called Medium.

  • FB Posts

Post your blogs to your friends and followers to share them. The more people who see the post the more people who will go to it, and suggest one of your articles. One thing to keep in mind Social media shares are not the same as a backlink. I’ll cover more on that topic in a separate article.

  • Linkedin

Who wants to build their personal authority and rack up some backlinks? If you post your blog articles on Linkedin you get a free backlink and your network will view you as an expert.

  • Medium

Medium is similar to linkedin. Think of it basically as a newspaper and a magazine combined in one. It is for people who are interesting writers. Even if you are not grammatically correct you can gain the attention of influential people. Also the users on that websites love to share articles they viewed as engaging and you can gain free views, and backlinks. Not to mention you can post your backlink in other people’s comment section

In conclusion if you are not already in the trenches of social media, you are not serious about SEO.

If you liked this intro to social media check out our other articles as http://iantubbs.com

Categories: Guest Blogs, Social Media

What is Google Adwords and Why You Should be Using It!

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What is Google Adwords?

Google Adwords is a service created and delivered to you by Google. This service is created as an advertising service and allows you to advertise for your company through Google. The service allows you to set a budget for the amount of money you wish to spend daily on clicks. It proceeds to only charge you when your ad is clicked on. What this means is that you will pay for each click that your ad receives. People can look at your ad but no charges will be made unless they physically click on that ad. Once you are at your budget for the day your ad will no longer appear.

Keywords

Keywords are a big part of Google Adwords. The search engine needs to use something to be able to dictate when to show your ad to viewers. By setting up keywords, and advertising those keywords in your ad title and tagline Google then knows to show your ad to people who search that keyword. As a user of Google Adwords you are also given the option to make bids on other words that are associated with your keyword. This topic is referenced in the keyword strategy portion of another page on this site where I talked about a project that my fellow students and I performed in class.

Google Adwords is a great tool to research how many searches certain keywords attain per month. It is also a great way to further advertise your company. I highly recommend everyone looks into this service if they are interested in Digital Marketing!

Here is a link to the Google site where you can learn more about Adwords and sign up for the service for yourself!

https://support.google.com/adwords/answer/6349091?hl=en

Categories: Digital Marketing