Archive for the 'Fun Friday' Category

Thanks Mr. Watson!

Friday, July 24th, 2009


Bird Watching

Friday, July 17th, 2009


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SEO VooDoo

Friday, July 10th, 2009


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Matching Luggage Syndrome

Friday, July 3rd, 2009

As you have noticed, we are starting a “Fun Friday” posting. Basically that means that it’s topic is related to search marketing and of interest to us and our readers, but sort of off the beaten path. We hope you enjoy these posts and have a great weekend!

My final takeaway from the SMX London Keynote by Brian Fetherstonhaugh, the Chairman and CEO of OgilvyOne Worldwide, came from Brian’s list of “FAILs of Online Marketing Initiatives.” The first one is what hit home to me.

#1 Fail: The Matching Luggage Syndrome: When a company wants an integrated campaign, so they just make everything match, but do not utilize the medium for what it is.

Her Royal Highnesses Matched Luggage

Her Royal Highness's Matched Luggage

For example, using website layouts for email and direct mail. Or more importantly, taking direct mail layouts and using them for email and landing pages. The main point here is that every medium has it’s own “rules.” Consumers respond to each medium in their own way. So just as one landing page design might work for a company, that same design might not work for a different company. Here are some of the mediums you should be differentiating and why.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is all about getting time sensitive news to your end users. You want this medium short, sweet and to the point. If you are pushing news, include the news. If a promotion, make sure that is the focus of the email. Using your site layout for email is just going to add information that the reader doesn’t want or need to know. These are your customers and leads, give them what they asked for and then go away. The ones that are interested will click.

Direct Mail

Direct Mail is much like websites in that the perfect design varies with the industry. Most tests have shown that long letters have proven to be the most effective, but that isn’t ALWAYS the care. Then there are postcards. I have seen numerous companies use postcard designs for landing page layouts. Direct Mail is about getting someone to reply back, visit a website (which is so much more than clicking), visiting a store, or calling in. While some of those overlap online, people are in a different frame of mind when reading direct mail. Don’t use what works there in other places and expect the same results.

Website Design

Web users are out for one of three things: commerce, research, or entertainment. They have a specific purpose when they get online. Therefore their frame of mind is completely different than when they walk past a store on their way to lunch, receive a post card, or a phone call. They want something from you when they get to your site, and the more you know what that thing is, the better your site will do. You cannot use what works here in any other medium because of this specific frame of mind. You can utilize content from other mediums, but your site has to be designed with this end user intent in mind.

Print Advertising

Print ads (think newspapers and magazines) are great for introducing people to a product that they are not already familiar with. Print ads and television are always going to be around because we have to be able to inform people about products they do not know exist yet. The intent of the reader is pure entertainment (yes even in the newspaper). They are being informed of things but not doing “Research” per se. They have their minds open to just about anything that might help any problem they are having at the time. A print ads purpose is to gain attention, educate a little, and then get people to change their behavior to find out more. Hopefully inducing a phone call, or a website or store visit. But it has to draw enough attention to change behavior and intent.


Banners catch attention. Creative on the web, just like in print (as mentioned above), is there to pique the interest of a user who is looking into something related to your business. But with online advertising, you want them to click, not change their behavior completely. You should be designing banners to increase clicks, not induce phone calls or store visits. With banners, they are already online, you are just moving them from one topic to another.

Branding – Bringing Sexy Back

Friday, June 26th, 2009

Many professionals in the search marketing space didn’t start their careers thinking “I’ll work with websites, Excel spreadsheets, and code for a living.” We were marketers first. We learned about the world of advertising and branding. The good old boys out making TV ad buys on the golf course. ;)

That world changed and we are now in a world of online ad buys and text advertising. Don’t get us wrong, Haiku advertising (PPC) is exciting, but not as much as storyboards and seeing your work on prime-time television.

From Zazzle

From Zazzle

At SMX London, I think Brian Fetherstonhaugh, Chairman and CEO, OgilvyOne Worldwide said “Social Media is making branding sexy again.” We are all pushed to make numbers, prove by ROI, sales funnels and all. But what we were missing in all of that was the branding. Investing in branding allows your other campaigns to convert better. People trust what they know. It’s tough to prove ROI in branding campaigns but if all your campaigns are tracked correctly as well as your natural traffic, you can see the lift after a branding campaign.

Then came along social media. Branding is sexy again. We are still working on fully tracking social media mentions and the time spent on Twitter, Facebook, and other social networks. But companies large and small are seeing the traffic come in from these efforts. They are seeing the correlation between the branding (using social media to converse and not sell) and end sales.

Traditional marketing is not dead. TV commericals are still sexy. Print ads still pique interest in products. And social media is the new black. It’s sexy at the core because it’s more trackable and allows a company to influence word of mouth, the most powerful of all referrers.