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The State of Marketing in 2022


Marketing has changed tremendously in the last two years with the pressure of a global pandemic accelerating an already rapid growth cycle. As we enter 2022, it’s worth reflecting on where marketing was, where it is now, and where it’s going. 

History of Marketing 

To understand where we’re going, we have to understand where we came from. And to understand where we came from, we have to understand what exactly we mean when we use the term “marketing.” 

Marketing in its most basic form is the process of communicating a message to an audience. In ancient times that looked like artwork on cave walls, papyrus scrolls, and long speeches from key leaders. Like other areas of civilization, however, marketing has continued to improve throughout the centuries. In the 1400s Johannes Gutenberg invented movable type. In the 1840s Samuel Morse invented the telegraph and by the mid-1900s radio, TV, and other “modern” marketing techniques were commonplace. 

These changes, while groundbreaking for their time, pale in comparison to the changes that have occurred in the last 20 years. Where once marketing methods took decades to develop, the advent of the internet, the explosive growth of personal computers and mobile devices, and the reality of the Covid-19 pandemic have accelerated an already rapid technological revolution into warp speed. 

Covid-19, Segmentation, and the Power of the Pivot. 

2020 showed us just how real the online world could be as webinars took over in-person classes, events were held virtually or in a hybrid fashion, and work from home proved to be not only possible, but in many cases productive. Audiences that were once in malls, restaurants, and other public places have moved online, and ordering from home and interacting with the world in a “contactless” fashion were, and are, at an all-time high. 

Early in the 2000s Experts had predicted that traditional marketing methods (think flyers, billboards, etc.) would slowly phase out and be replaced by digital marketing methods (think google ads, social media marketing, etc.). With the realities of a global pandemic, however, the digital world is here to stay with digital marketing surpassing traditional marketing

This rise in online traffic, however, has consequences. A rapidly growing online audience has driven the segmentation of digital marketing channels faster than perhaps ever before. Where Facebook was once a novelty, it now exists as one social media platform of many. (Looking at you Pinterest, Instagram, Tiktok, Twitter, etc.) Each day individuals are faced with new content, new channels, new platforms, and new trends, and businesses are faced with an increasingly difficult task — reaching their audience in a cluttered online environment.

What’s more, the Covid-19 pandemic is far from over and the pressure of the digital age continues to intensify as businesses evolve to meet the needs of a pandemic world. In this climate, businesses have to pivot and pivot quickly. It’s safe to say that we may never return to “normal” as we knew it in February 2020, but as each day passes we learn more and more about how to engage with this new reality. 

Opportunities and the Path Ahead

The true power of marketing lies in the power of the message and in your ability to communicate it well.  In this new age of marketing, marketers must consider what they say and how they say it through a strategic lens. Researching your audience and learning where they are spending their time is key. More and more studies indicate that the modern attention span is getting shorter and in an already distracted world people are less likely to engage with content that doesn’t immediately connect with them. Knowing what channels (social media, blogs, email campaigns) work for your business will allow you to invest time and money into the things that will drive your business forward. Effective marketing in these next few years will rely heavily on data, metrics, and the ability to pivot your company in an ever-evolving world. 

The future is uncertain and marketing is changing more quickly than perhaps anyone expected. Virtual reality is on the horizon and is already showing up in the largest marketing players (Facebook and Microsoft). The world after this pandemic is still being created, but just like ancient times, there will be new innovation and new opportunities for every business, nonprofit, and organization. 

Cheers to 2022 and all the potential and the progress it holds. 

 



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Internet Businesses Tips

SEO is Changing, is Your Business Ready?


SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is synonymous with change. Every time you turn around, Google is prioritizing one thing over another, causing SEO professionals to shift their focus according to the algorithm for that time period. Although these changes might seem completely random, believe us, Google has a method to their madness. 

If you think about it, why do people use Google? Most of the time, it’s to find answers to their questions. Whether they’re searching for a location, product, service, or finding out how tall their favorite celebrity is, Google’s goal is to answer your questions. It does this by controlling what you see and how you see it, which is a little scary for a lot of people, but that’s a topic for another day. It analyzes trends and builds upon them to create changes, forging a path for the internet to move forward. 

From a bird’s eye view, Google is constantly changing based on the way users search for information. This doesn’t just impact billion-dollar companies, it affects small businesses all around you who invest in digital marketing and SEO. 

In this article, we’ll:

  • Review the basics of local SEO
  • Dig into the changes happening in local SEO
  • Explain What this means for small businesses
  • Define long-tail keywords
  • Explain how AI (Artificial Intelligence) is influencing the SEO landscape. 

What is Local SEO?

At its core, local SEO is when a business attempts to enhance their online presence without the use of ads in their local community. Companies who invest in local SEO generally have the same goal in mind: rank in one of the top three spots in Google’s local pack and organic listings. 

For those unfamiliar with the terms local pack and organic listings, the local pack is the section at the very top of the search engine results page with a short list of three companies that includes a link to their website, phone number, directions to their business, etc. To view more businesses, you click on the more places tab. The organic listings are a list of companies directly below the local pack, usually accompanied by Google Ads. 

Investing in local SEO means your business is targeting people who are searching with local intent, often using the term “near me” or the name of the city/town after the main keyword to find their desired results. 

Recent Changes in Local SEO

About 20 years ago, if a small business had one page with a few keywords sprinkled throughout the content, they were way ahead of the game. As time went on, companies had to adapt if they wanted to remain competitive, so web design and SEO strategies became more and more detailed. 

Let’s fast-forward to modern day SEO. Digital marketing has reached a state of relevancy to the point that 71% of all small businesses have a website and nearly half of small businesses invest in SEO. Staying up to date with the changes Google throws your way is essential to becoming or remaining relevant online. 

So, what are some of these recent changes?

    • Focusing on on-site and off-site SEO – It’s no longer enough to focus solely on what’s happening on your website, but it’s essential to establish an overall digital presence that complements your site. (social media, backlinking, Google Business Profile which was formerly known as Google My Business, etc.)
    • Creating an exceptional user experience on all devices – Having a website that looks good and functions at a high level on desktop, tablet, and mobile is critical to SEO efforts. In fact, in recent years, Google has prioritized mobile friendliness over desktop. 
    • Creating long-form content is a major priority in the eyes of Google – It wasn’t long ago where doing 400-500 word articles would help you rank online. Now the standard is 1,200-1,500 words. 
    • Optimize quality images throughout your site – For a while, imagery was seen as secondary content on a website, but producing high quality images is now a primary focus for Google. 
    • Last, but certainly not least, Google is falling in love with websites that are voice search friendly – Whether it’s via phone, Alexa, Siri or any other device, nearly 50% of all search queries are done via voice search.

What It Means For Small Businesses

Tracking and implementing Google updates into your SEO and digital marketing strategy can have groundbreaking effects on your business. Generally, people searching for products or services on Google are an untapped resource of potential customers. These individuals haven’t fully decided which company they want to go with, so they turn to the most powerful search engine in the world to guide them. 

Although Google is ever-changing, there’s one thing that hasn’t wavered: the results of those businesses who rank at the top of the local pack on organic results. Year after year, at least 50-60% of ALL clicks go to the top 3 search engine spots. 

Oftentimes, it doesn’t require landing a top three ranking for an entire city or region to yield the sought after results. Over the last 2 years, there has been a 200% increase in “near me” related searches. For example, users are searching for “salon near me,” “restaurants near me,” or “web design company near me,” now more than ever. For individuals who think this is a trend that will eventually fade, the number of near me related searches increased by 900% from 2017-2019! 

Thinking about ranking at the very top of an industry for an entire region might sound daunting for companies new to SEO. But these incredible statistics prove that outranking competitors within close proximity of your business can still provide astounding results. 

What Are Long-Tail Keywords?

Long-tail keywords are longer, more specific keywords or phrases that are used when the consumer is closer to the point of purchase or used with voice search. The more commonly used short-tail keywords are shorter phrases that generally refer to broad search topics. 

For example: 

Short-tail keyword – Cat food near me

Long-tail keyword – Organic cat food for sensitive stomachs near me

While long-tail keywords generally have a much lower search volume than short-tail keywords, they help the user find exactly what they are looking for. A great time to consider long-tail keywords is if the generic short-tail terms have extremely high competition and there’s minimal opportunity to rank for those terms. 

The key is discovering the long-tail keywords people are searching for and strategically using them throughout your on- and off-site content. If you offer a very niche product or service within your general scope of offerings, it might be worth it to research these long-tail keyword topics.  

What is AI and How Has it Changed SEO?

Long-tail keywords are growing in popularity because of the way people are searching online. Creating conversational-based content on your website is of growing importance. As previously mentioned, 50% of people are doing search queries via voice search. The more this number increases and the more data Google can gather from these searches, the more the emphasis on long-tail terms will increase. This has everything to do with Artificial Intelligence, or AI. 

Artificial Intelligence is a wide-ranging branch of computer science concerned with building smart machines capable of performing tasks that typically require human intelligence.

Yes, that sounds a little scary and iRobot-esque. But we’ve all been living with AI for years. The reality is that your smartphone, Alexa, Siri, email spam filter, and, yes, the Netflix recommendation setting you use on a daily basis, is AI. 

AI functions differently than normal search patterns. People ask Alexa, “Where should I go for dinner?” but they might search “dinner near me” while typing on their phone or computer. 

This ties in with how SEO is evolving around AI and voice search patterns. Think about it: when you ask Alexa or your phone a voice search question, it tends to be “long-tailed.” And if Google is evolving based on the searches people are inquiring about, it’s essential to be aware of this and adapt to the changes. 

Since people are continuing to search for products and services as if they’re having a conversation, creating conversational content is growing in importance. 

This means discovering what long-tail keywords people are searching for in your industry, and implementing these into your digital presence to create a personalized experience for the user. 

For some companies, adding long-tail keywords and AI voice search patterns into your digital strategy isn’t applicable yet. But some businesses in heavily searched, high-volume industries center their entire strategy around voice search and long-tail terms. 

No matter what boat you’re in, remaining vigilant of these changes will help your business remain relevant online. 

You Need a Trusted Partner

Things are changing in SEO, and unless you’re a full-time SEO professional, it’s nearly impossible to stay on top of all the trends. The fact is, SEO is just one piece to the digital marketing puzzle. 

If SEO makes sense for your brand, it’s essential to find a trusted partner to guide you through the process – and even let you know if SEO matches your company goals and overall business strategy. 



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5 Ways To Beat The Applicant Tracking System (ATS) for Remote Jobs


Have you lost count of how many remote jobs you applied for and weren’t successful? Well, you might have encountered the Applicant Tracking System for Remote Jobs.

The EASIEST Ways To Earn Extra Cash Online…

When uploading your resume or completing an online application your details will pass through the applicant tracking system software that searches for specific keywords within a document. 

Today I’ll share some tips on how you can pass the hurdles of this software by helping you navigate this tracking system the right way.

What is an Applicant Tracking System (ATS)

To fully understand what you need to make your cover letter and resume get past the ATS checking stages you need to know what an Applicant Tracking System otherwise known as ATS is looking for, 

Firstly, the ATS is used by HR Managers and recruiters. Specific keywords are programmed into the software and the tracking system searches for the pre-programmed keywords.

Next, the ATS filters out those applications with the keywords and moves them to the next stage. Those applications without the keywords end up being rejected by the software.

This is done to help recruiters quickly find the right candidates for their online jobs. It saves time and allows those who read the job description carefully to rightfully get to the next stage such as a test, a phone call, or a first interview.

Recruiters receive hundreds if not thousands of applications and the recruiting process is made more efficient by using the ATS.

You May Also Like: 10 Bad Signs To Avoid During Your Remote Job Search

How To Get Through the Applicant Tracking System

Now that you know what the ATS does it’s your time to take a look at your application and make the required adjustments.

You probably have a great reading cover letter and resume but you might be missing a few things. Here is a quick guide on what to look for and what to do.

Step #1 – Read Over the Job Description

This sounds simple enough but you really need to focus on what exactly is required. What is the job title? What is the main function of the job? What software tools are used for the job? How many years of experience does it require? 

For instance, if the job requests over 5 years of experience and you only have 6 months that will go against you and you may end up on the reject pile.

Step #2 – Use the Keywords

From reading over the job description you should be able to easily figure out what the keywords are for the remote job you’ve applied for. Highlight them to go back to later.

Make sure that you add these keywords to your resume, cover letter, and or application and that the document reads naturally.

A simple tip is to make a list of all the keywords and tick them off once you have used them throughout your document so as not to miss any or to overuse them.

Check this out too! How To Write an Eye-Catching Resume Summary

Step #3 – Check Tone of Company Culture

From the tone of the job description, and doing online research you can usually tell if the work environment is laid back or very formal. Ensure that your cover letter reflects this honestly to show that you’re a good fit for the company.

Step #4 – Look Out for Special Instructions

Be aware that some companies may ask strange requests as a way to see if you were paying keen attention and can follow direct instructions. 

You might have seen requests to type the word ‘rabbit’ in the subject line, or name your favorite food somewhere in the letter.

This is done as another way to filter out unsuitable candidates who do not follow instructions. Make sure this isn’t you!

Step #5 – Read Over Application Before Submitting

One simple mistake that is sometimes made is not reading over your document one final time before submitting it. 

A good idea is actually to not look at your resume or cover letter for at least an hour so that you will have fresher eyes when reading over to spot any mistakes such as spelling mistakes or bad grammar.

Final Thoughts On How to Conquer the Applicant Tracking System

Don’t look at the Applicant Tracking System as a way to block you from getting your dream remote job use it to your advantage to make your application the best. 

Follow the 5 tips above by reading over the job description, adding the required keywords, checking on the tone of how company content is written, looking out for any special instructions, and definitely making sure to read over your application before submitting.

I hope you found these 5 simple steps useful to get to the next stage of finding your ideal remote job and please do share it with others who are also looking for online work.



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