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Google Teases April 22 AdWords News, More Than 10 Announcements Coming

On April 22, Jerry Dischler, VP of Product Management for AdWords will unveil a slew of new features and tools that are coming out of beta during a livestream from an AdWords customer event. Google has given Search Engine Land an exclusive early look at a blog post going up later today that gives a…



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The Latest on “Not Provided” and More at SMX Advanced – Register Now

Ask a search marketer what they love about their job and you’ll likely hear “it’s always changing.” Just this week, Google upset the apple cart by announcing it’s extending “not provided” to paid ads. Will that change have meaningful impact for you? That’s just one of the topics SMX Advanced will…



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Bing Ads To Give Agencies More Functionality To Manage Client Relationships

The way agencies manage their customer accounts using their agency login in Bing Ads is soon to undergo a revamp. Currently, client account lists are housed under the Agencies tab, but Microsoft acknowledges there have been limitations to the functionality offered. The update is meant to fix these…



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Pinterest Launches ‘Pin It’ Button For WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr and More.

Pinterest recently announced on their Pinterest For Business Blog they will be bringing the Pin It button to more […]

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Matt Southern

Matt Southern is a marketing, communications and public relations professional. He provides strategic digital marketing services at an agency called Bureau in Ontario, Canada. He has a bachelors degree in communication and an unparalleled passion for helping businesses get their message out.

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Weekly SEO Tip: Authority Means More than Popularity for Your Content – The Content Standard by Skyword (blog)

Weekly SEO Tip: Authority Means More than Popularity for Your Content
The Content Standard by Skyword (blog)
As we move away from purely SEO-driven content strategies, brands have realized they need to develop a sharper focus on the subject matter discussed in marketing blogs. Building authority in their industry through content helps shape the future of new …

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Use Paid Promotion to Refine Your SEO and Make Your Visitors More Valuable

<p>Posted by <a href=\”http://moz.com/community/users/503984\”>shannonskinner</a></p><p>
I recently found myself trying to give a client a rough estimate of the value organic traffic brought them. In the process of doing so, I stumbled upon the world of paid promotion. Considering Rand’s Whiteboard Friday about
<a href=”http://moz.com/blog/surviving-the-seo-slog-whiteboard-friday” target=”_blank”>surviving the SEO slog</a>, paid promotion is important to tactics that we know do provide immediate tangible value, and I wondered if there was potential for it to be a part of a wider online marketing strategy that could also enhance the work of SEO. I want to open up that world a bit and discuss what I discovered:&nbsp;how paid promotion can complement organic search.</p><p>
First, let me define what I mean by “paid promotion.” This might include typical paid search, but also display ads, remarketing, and paid ads on platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. Paid promotion comes in many forms, including sponsored images, sponsored stories, and&nbsp;everything else&nbsp;in the following image (tap/click to enlarge):</p><p>
<a href=”http://d2v4zi8pl64nxt.cloudfront.net/using-paid-promotion-to-enhance-seo/5341c0dd52b114.84262548.png” target=”_blank”><img src=”http://d2v4zi8pl64nxt.cloudfront.net/using-paid-promotion-to-enhance-seo/5341c0dd52b114.84262548.png”></a></p><p style=”text-align: center;”>
<em>
Image source: <a href=”http://d2v4zi8pl64nxt.cloudfront.net/using-paid-promotion-to-enhance-seo/5341c0dd52b114.84262548.png” target=”_blank”>http://imgur.com/z059ueV.png</a></em></p><p>
Recently, there’s been lots of discussion of the
<a href=”http://social.ogilvy.com/facebook-zero-considering-life-after-the-demise-of-organic-reach/” target=”_blank”>decreasing organic reach on Facebook</a>. It seems that there’s been a <a href=”http://moz.com/blog/facebook-algorithm-change” target=”_blank”>shift in the Facebook algorithm</a>—certain posts have seen a decrease, others an increase in organic reach. Pages with over 500,000 likes are seeing a particularly&nbsp;massive decrease in organic reach, perhaps in an effort to encourage them to pay for ads. Additionally, MarketingLand recently reported that <a href=”http://marketingland.com/pinterest-advertisers-start-paying-promoted-pins-early-next-month-report-77645″ target=”_blank”>Pinterest will be adding promoted pins</a>.</p><p>
The reality is, paid promotion has a lot to offer online marketing, and can really complement some of what you might be doing with search marketing and optimization. Paid promotion offers a way to test things out to make sure they’re worth putting the effort and resources into, as well as add more punch to the impact that search is already making for a site. Paid promotion offers quick results you can control, making it a great&nbsp;complement to your overall marketing strategy.</p><h2>
<strong>Test things out: Use Facebook and AdWords to test your ideas</strong></h2><p>
Optimizing for search and creating interesting content that will get shared requires a lot of investment. Paid promotion can be used to test recommendations and creative ideas out before investing a lot of time, energy, and resources into making them happen. It can also be used&nbsp;after content has&nbsp;been made to ensure you’re using optimal headlines. Upworthy provided a really fantastic deck for how to make things go viral, and it included the recommendation of using Facebook as a means to test headlines.</p>
<div style=”text-align:center;”>
<iframe src=”http://www.slideshare.net/slideshow/embed_code/17333198″ width=”427″ height=”356″ frameborder=”0″ marginwidth=”0″ marginheight=”0″ scrolling=”no” style=”border:1px solid #CCC; border-width:1px 1px 0; margin-bottom:5px; max-width: 100%; display:inline-block;” allowfullscreen=””>
</iframe>
</div><div style=”margin-bottom: 5px; text-align: center;”>
<strong> <a href=”https://www.slideshare.net/Upworthy/the-sweet-science-of-virality” title=”The Sweet Science Of Virality” target=”_blank”>The Sweet Science Of Virality</a> </strong> from <strong><a href=”http://www.slideshare.net/Upworthy” target=”_blank”>Upworthy</a></strong>
</div><p>
Titles can be the difference, according to
<a href=”http://www.upworthy.com/you-will-not-believe-how-easy-it-is-to-make-something-go-viral” target=”_blank”>Upworthy</a>, between one million views and 17 million views. That’s a pretty big impact. I particularly love this deck because they&nbsp;use examples to illustrate how you really can’t predict which titles will work with people, making it critical to test. And then test some more.&nbsp;</p><p>
I’ve used Facebook ads to estimate interest in projects.&nbsp;Is the click-through&nbsp;rate (CTR) good enough to actually build out a project?&nbsp;If not, it’s better to go back to the drawing board and make sure you’ll actually have an audience. For a little more depth, <a href=”http://fbppc.com/how-to/construct-better-headlines-with-facebook-ad-tests/” target=”_blank”>this post</a> also explains how to do what Upworthy did to optimize&nbsp;their headlines.</p><p>You can set up an ad campaign relatively cheaply—you can purchase over 200,000 unique impressions for around $100 on Facebook (side ads, not feed ads, which are a bit more expensive). From there,&nbsp;you can calculate whether there is a statistically significant difference in the CTRs of each of your variances (if you need a statistics refresher,&nbsp;you can easily use&nbsp;<a href=”http://visualwebsiteoptimizer.com/downloads/ab_testing_significance_calculator.xls” target=”_blank”>this fantastic spreadsheet</a> from&nbsp;<a href=”http://visualwebsiteoptimizer.com/split-testing-blog/ab-testing-significance-calculator-spreadsheet-in-excel/” target=”_blank”>Visual Website Optimizer</a>).</p><p style=”text-align: center;”>
<a href=”http://visualwebsiteoptimizer.com/downloads/ab_testing_significance_calculator.xls” target=”_blank”><img src=”http://d1avok0lzls2w.cloudfront.net/uploads/blog/5341f37dcfa941.56166986.jpg”></a></p><p style=”text-align: center;”>
<em>Image Source:&nbsp;<a href=”http://visualwebsiteoptimizer.com/split-testing-blog/ab-testing-significance-calculator-spreadsheet-in-excel/” target=”_blank”>Visual Website Optimizer</a></em></p><p>
It can be used for determining the significance of any test by simply having two sets of conversion statistics—in this case, for “Visitors,” you’d enter the number of impressions & for “Conversions” you’d enter the number of clicks. The spreadsheet provides a YES or NO about whether the difference between the two sets of numbers is significant with 90, 95 or 99% confidence, making the math super easy.&nbsp;If the difference between your tests isn’t significant, you’ll have to run them again with a larger sample, or they may be equivalently impactful, so you could use another version to test again.</p><p>
Facebook has the advantage of segmentation—whatever population you want to target can be targeted—cat lovers, people who like a particular musical artist, play tennis or live in a small town, but aren’t from that location. Any segmentation you can imagine, you can target.</p><p>
To test for free, you can use Upworthy’s trick of posting to specific cities with different headlines, but considering the recent decrease in organic reach, that may not yield the kind of results you’re looking for.&nbsp;</p><p>
AdWords can also be useful to
<a href=”http://blogs.hbr.org/2011/10/the-fastest-cheapest-best-way/” target=”_blank”>test out titles and keywords to target</a>, as well as <a href=”http://hallmancommunications.com/how-to-test-demand-for-your-new-product-using-google-adwords/” target=”_blank”>viability of new products</a>. Each of these tests will vary in price greatly depending upon the type of keywords you’re targeting as well as the number of clicks you end up needing to get statistically significant results (same situation as with Facebook). Unfortunately, you won’t know exactly what you need until you’ve got it, but if you can give yourself around $500 of budget, to test a few headlines, you may well be able to get some quality data.&nbsp;</p><p>
Either using Facebook or AdWords to test out headlines means you need something to click to. I’ve found great success with&nbsp;<a href=”http://launchrock.co/” target=”_blank”>LaunchRock</a>—it’s super easy to set up and either use their server or your own to point visitors to. The added bonus is that you can easily collect contact information, generating leads while you’re testing things out.&nbsp;</p><p>
AdWords can also be a great
<a href=”http://moz.com/blog/using-adwords-data-for-seo-unlocking-the-ultimate-keyword-research-treasure-trove-arrrgh” target=”_blank”>source of keyword data</a>, in part because you can see what the conversion rates are for different keywords for your site. You could use a similar technique for Twitter, or really any other advertising platform. But these are some of the most commonly used and advertised on, and relatively easy to launch advertising for.</p><p>
The advantage for SEO of testing in this way is that you can then select which keywords to target and titles to use&nbsp;not just based on volume of queries, but also by how conversion rates for your site are for each query. Getting 500,000 new visitors where only 5,000 turn into new clients is not as fantastic as getting 100,000 new visitors where 10,000 of them turn into new clients. The same is true, of course, for amount of revenue. Not all traffic is equal, and paid search can help SEO determine which traffic should be pursued, and which titles to use to do so.&nbsp;</p><h2>
<strong>Pack more punch: Use remarketing to convert&nbsp;more visitors into&nbsp;customers</strong></h2><p>
It’s great to get traffic to your site. It’s even better for traffic to generate revenue. Remarketing is basically targeting previous visitors to encourage them to behave in the way you’d like—buying your product, signing up for your email list, etc. It is
<a href=”http://www.comscore.com/Insights/Press_Releases/2010/9/comScore_Study_with_ValueClick_Media_Shows_Ad_Retargeting_Generates_Strongest_Lift_Compared_to_Other_Targeting_Strategies” target=”_blank”>extremely effective (one study says an incredible 1,046% increase in trademark lift!)</a>. Remarketing is effective&nbsp;because, as AJ Kohn at Blind Five Year Old <a href=”http://www.blindfiveyearold.com/seo-remarketing” target=”_blank”>explains</a>, you are marketing to people who already came to your site. Larry Kim provided an excellent <a href=”http://moz.com/blog/remarketing-how-to-make-your-content-marketing-seo-up-to-7x-more-awesome” target=”_blank”>case study on using remarketing to enhance the impact of SEO</a> on Moz last fall. It’s a fantastic example of how powerful remarketing can be for search, because it is a way to build brand.</p><p>
There are some simple ways to do remarketing—remind a visitor&nbsp;to a particular product that they were looking at that exact product—but there are also some other, more inventive ways to use remarketing. Get them to join your mailing list. Offer a discount if they come back and buy. The important thing, as Larry says in his post,&nbsp;is to:</p><ul>

<li>Provide them a <strong>call to action </strong>(“sign up for our mailing list!”)</li>
<li>Include branding or images that will improve brand recall</li></ul>
<div style=”text-align:center;”>
<img src=”http://d1avok0lzls2w.cloudfront.net/uploads/blog/5341f661f15c35.02231055.jpg”>
</div><div style=”text-align:center;”>
<em>Image Source:&nbsp;<a href=”http://blog.reachlocal.com/139039/2011/06/01/how-to-create-an-engaging-remarketing-ad-for-your-local-business.html” target=”_blank”>ReachLocal</a></em><br>
</div><p>
Always do some A/B testing with your remarketing campaigns to ensure you’re using the optimal ads. If your ad is in your brand voice, and has a message that fits with your brand, you will be getting value out of the ads into the future, because your ads will not only be leading to immediate action off of your call to action, but also building up the recall of your brand.</p><p>
<a href=”https://blog.twitter.com/2013/nielsen-brand-effect-for-twitter-how-promoted-tweets-impact-brand-metrics” target=”_blank”>Twitter conducted a study</a> about the impact of impressions on brand favorability and brand lift, as well as purchase intent. While this information is clearly aimed at encouraging promoted tweets, and should thus taken with a grain of salt, psychology has firmly demonstrated that familiarity breeds likability. If you want people to like your brand, they should be familiar with it. And impressions are one way to enhance familiarity.</p><p>
As with testing out headlines and keywords that convert, remarketing can optimize value of&nbsp;the visitors search brings to a site. Reaching out to people who have visited the site, and thus clearly shown that they are interested at some level in what you’re offering can turn visitors into conversions, either as customers today, or leads to nurture.&nbsp;</p><p>
What do you think—when have you seen paid promotion complement SEO? Do you think it should be a completely distinct strategy? Let me know in the comments below!</p><br /><p><a href=”http://moz.com/moztop10″>Sign up for The Moz Top 10</a>, a semimonthly mailer updating you on the top ten hottest pieces of SEO news, tips, and rad links uncovered by the Moz team. Think of it as your exclusive digest of stuff you don’t have time to hunt down but want to read!</p>

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How To Get More Followers on Instagram

In a recent interview from Ad:tech, San Francisco Murray Newlands talks to SEJ’s Editor-at-Large John Rampton about how […]

Author information

Murray Newlands

Murray Newlands

Murray is Deputy Editor at Search Engine Journal,

Murray founded The Mail in 2013, an angel-funded startup publication covering performance marketing and mobile marketing. Murray is an advisor to a number of bay area startups including VigLink. In 2011 Wiley published his book Online Marketing: A User’s Manual. Born in England, Murray moved to the USA in 2011 being recognized by the US government as “an alien of extraordinary ability”. Murray co-authored Content Marketing Strategies for Professionals with Bruce Clay. Murray runs the agency Influence People bases in San Francisco.

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Google AdWords Call Conversions To Get More Granular, Enable Target ROAS Bidding

Google is continuing to refine the way advertisers can track and optimize for conversion tracking events in AdWords. Last week, advertisers using call extensions and tracking call conversions were alerted that, at the end of April, they’ll be able to split call conversions up based on call…



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With Azure And Visual Studio, Microsoft Hugs Cloud And Mobile Developers A Little More Tightly

If you don’t do Windows, Microsoft still wants to talk to you.

One proof point there: Windows Azure, its answer to Amazon Web Services, is now called Microsoft Azure. The name change may be superficial, but there are deeper changes afoot, including a host of announcements the company made at its Build conference for developers in San Francisco on Thursday.

Visual Studio Goes Online

The core of how Microsoft has catered to software creators over the year is Visual Studio, a desktop program that offers an integrated development environment, or IDE—in other words, all the tools you need to write, test, and fix software. It was, naturally, only available on Windows.

At Build, Microsoft executive Scott Guthrie announced that Visual Studio Online, a Web-based version of Visual Studio, had exited a period of testing and was now available to all comers. For groups of more than 5 users, it requires a paid subscription, and it still lacks some of the features of the desktop version, but it is a way developers who prefer Mac or Linux machines can get a taste of Microsoft’s code-building tools. 

Another way Microsoft is courting those developers is through the partnership it unveiled last November with Xamarin, a San Francisco-based software company which offers code-building software compatible with Microsoft’s tools and frameworks, including the C# programming language and the .Net framework. Xamarin Studio is available for both Mac and Windows, making it another way Microsoft can broaden its reach among developers it has not traditionally courted. Xamarin cofounder Miguel de Icaza demonstrated Xamarin on stage at Build on Thursday.

Azure Skies

At the same time, it is also clear that Visual Studio will also be more and more tightly integrated with Azure. For example, Microsoft  now lets Visual Studio users increase or decrease the amount of computing power they wish to rent on Azure right within the program. This integration is meant to let developers move more quickly by adding extra servers or instances without having to leave their coding environment.

Ironically, Microsoft is catching up on its own turf. Amazon, Microsoft’s archrival in Web-based computing services, recognized the opportunity to court Microsoft developers and already offers a Visual Studio extension for managing the full range of Amazon Web Services offerings within the program.

Microsoft is now talking to developers beyond the Windows world.

Microsoft is now talking to developers beyond the Windows world.

MIcrosoft also added to its mobile back-end offerings, which allow app developers to focus more on designing an app’s user interface and worry less about how it will store data and run code.

A key back-end service is Azure Active Directory, a Web-based version of Microsoft’s authentication system for corporate networks. An executive from DocuSign, a document-management service, showed how its mobile app used Azure Active Directory to let users log in with the same credentials they might use for their company email—on an iPhone, no less.

Microsoft Azure Active Directory works on iOS devices, too.

Microsoft Azure Active Directory works on iOS devices, too.


At the same time it’s making Visual Studio more attractive—or at least a plausible option—for non-Windows developers, its also letting developers use a wide variety of programming languages to access Azures computing services. And it’s letting them use Visual Studio and Azure to create apps that run on Apple’s iOS, Googles Android, and the Web, not just Windows.

This doesn’t represent a whole new strategy for Microsoft, which has been building towards this for years. But the collection of products and features Microsoft highlighted at Build shows that it now has a serious portfolio for developers of all stripes.

Photo of Scott Guthrie, Microsoft’s executive vice president, cloud and enterprise group, by Owen Thomas for ReadWrite

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Getting More From Your RLSA Campaigns

Remarketing Lists for Search Ads (RLSAs) has been, in my opinion, the highest impact feature released by Google over the last year! However, many people out there are still not putting them to use, and those who are using them could probably be getting even more out of them by adopting smarter…



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