Picking Your Multi-Channel Agency For 2015

Dec. 22

With 2015 approaching, it’s the ideal time to think about your team. I’m talking about your internal team, and also your agency team. Do you manage a complex, multi-channel digital marketing program? When I first started in this field, our industry was organized in more of a channel-specific manner. These days, however, it’s all about the multi-channel approach. And, this is where team comes in. To manage an effective multi-channel digital marketing program, you need to assemble a great team, the best team ever!

I’m a huge fan of agencies. One of my favorites is 3Q Digital, the authors of today’s whitepaper: Should One Agency Manage Your Multi-Channel Strategy? I’m thrilled to share today’s whitepaper because it presents all the right frameworks to think about your staffing approach in 2015. It’s unbiased, covers all of the viewpoints, and includes 13-pages of helpful knowledge around choosing the right internal employees and/or agency(ies) for your digital strategy. Best yet, it’s written by David Rodnitzky, CEO of 3Q Digital.

Some highlights from 3Q’s multi-channel agency whitepaper:

  • How to think about the different digital channels. Which channels build brand, which drive direct response, which do both? Before selecting your team, first think about the channels that are important to your business.
  • How to determine if online advertising is truly core to your business. Assessing how critical digital advertising is to your business will determine if you build your team in-house, go with an agency, or do both.
  • Pros and cons of agencies. I really thought this was cool. Even though the whitepaper is written by a digital agency, it’s truly unbiased and shares all of the pros and cons. Before adopting any approach, it’s good to have honest expectations.
  • What are the three types of agencies and how do they differ? David covers the three types of agencies, and the pros and cons of each. Again, I truly appreciated the unbiased and honest approach.
  • David shares his "deep dive" approach to selecting an agency. Once you’ve crafted your overall team and agency strategy, you need to audition multiple agencies. David’s framework provides a great way to ensure you pick the right agency for you.

I hope this whitepaper helps shape your strategy heading into 2015. Now is the time to think about your team, and build your team heading into the new year.

3Q Choosing Agencies

Image in this post © 3Q Digital

Kenshoo’s Amazing Big Data Guide

Dec. 06

2015 is almost here! Now is the time to start planning your digital marketing strategy for the next year. Is big data part of your strategy? It certainly should be. Big data can be confusing. Is it just a buzz word, or does it have real implications in your marketing strategy? I’m thrilled to share Kenshoo’s Guide To Big Data where you will find the answers to all of your Big Data questions.

Kenshoo, one of the premier digital marketing technology platforms, is a true leader in Big Data. If you’ve been reading PPC Ian for a while, you may remember that I shared an amazing whitepaper about Kenshoo’s SmartPath Technology. SmartPath is perhaps one of the coolest applications of Big Data in the field of digital marketing.

Kenshoo’s whitepaper on Big Data is really big, it’s 20-pages long! Some of my favorite highlights:

  • Is Big Data just a buzzword or a real trend? Kenshoo tells you the truth about Big Data!
  • Kenshoo highlights the most relevant applications of Big Data in the field of online marketing.
  • Kenshoo calls out the "8 Laws of Big Data", perhaps my favorite section of the entire eBook. The 8 Laws section ensures you keep the right focus and perspective when applying Big Data to online marketing.
  • Daniel Morgan, Head of Search Engine Marketing at Accor, gives his perspective on Big Data. I really enjoyed this section since I heard the Accor team speak at Adobe Summit EMEA.
  • Amit Golan, Senior Director of Product Strategy at Kenshoo, shares some really cool perspectives and stats on Big Data. Did you know, Kenshoo processes 85 million tracking events every day. They manage over $100 million in spend every week. They deliver 1 billion clicks per month. And, 1 trillion ads per year. Simply amazing! In my opinion, Kenshoo is Big Data!

Each weekend, I really enjoy reading these eBooks and whitepapers. They always provide great value heading into the workweek!

Kenshoo Big Data Guide

Image in this post © Kenshoo

Elevating Your Search and Social Programs

May. 09

There’s been a clear theme in our industry: Everything is connected! When you’re running solid PPC and SEO programs in tandem, 1 + 1 = 3. There is a multiplier effect, especially when the intersections are managed thoughtfully. While most subscribe to the network effect of PPC and SEO, I wanted to share another network effect today, the one between Search and Social. Long story short: If you manage Search but aren’t involved in your Social program (or vice versa), you are leaving some serious opportunity on the table. It’s time to get involved!

Kenshoo Search and Social Guide

To illustrate this point, I’d like to share Kenshoo’s latest free whitepaper, The Kenshoo Guide To Search and Social Intersections. I just finished reading this free 18-page whitepaper and it’s awesome, a must-read. (If you’ve been reading PPC Ian for a while, you know I’m a fan of whitepapers and always enjoy sharing my favorite ones here. They provide such an easy and leveraged way to bring bright new ideas to your organization.)

So, what did I learn in Kenshoo’s new whitepaper? Some highlights:

  • The four largest reasons why Search and Social are the next channels that should be integrated at any organization. Kenshoo makes it very clear and helps provide rationale you can leverage at your own company, as you pitch the idea.
  • The ways in with Search and Social complement each other. (Digging into the PPC Ian vaults, I also recommend checking out my review of Kenshoo’s prior whitepaper, Facebook Advertising Boosts Paid Search Performance. This is another great read, with clear evidence on how Facebook Ads assist the PPC channel.)
  • So you’ve decided to integrate Search and Social… Well, what does that look like? Kenshoo provides specific examples of Search signals for Social and Social Signals for Search. It’s a two-way street and you can clearly see how each channel complements the other. You’ll take away tactical insights on things you can do right now to amplify those synergies.
  • Channel integrations can present challenges. I enjoyed learning about potential challenges and also solutions for those challenges.
  • Kenshoo brings it home with advice on adding value to the rest of the marketing plan. We’re mid-year, but that doesn’t mean your marketing plan cannot change, especially as you plan for Q4 (retail vertical, anyone?). Now is the time to lock down your plan, and see how a Search and Social integration project could add substantial value to your plan.

With the weekend approaching, make sure to take some time for education and reflection. Read a whitepaper each weekend, such as this one, and you will be a superstar at your company, full of new ideas each and every week!

Image of The Kenshoo Guide to Search and Social Intersections © Kenshoo

Kenshoo Does It Again With Their PLA Guide

Feb. 11

Do you Kenshoo? Kenshoo is an amazing digital marketing platform for the true digital marketing professional. You may recall, just a few weeks ago, I blogged about Kenshoo’s new eBook, Facebook Advertising Boosts Paid Search Performance. I truly enjoyed reading that study, and highly recommend it to any digital marketer considering budget allocation decisions by channel. Well, Kenshoo has done it again! Today, I’m absolutely thrilled to share Kenshoo’s latest free guide: The Kenshoo Guide to Google Product Listing Ads.

As the title suggests, this guide is all about Product Listing Ads, also known as PLA Ads. It’s a free 17-page guide, packed full of actionable tips. Many years back, at the beginning of my digital marketing career, I was in the Product Shopping space and had great exposure to PLAs, feeds, and shopping comparison sites/ads. However, for most of my career, I have been in the Financial Services vertical. Those of us in Finance don’t spend quite as much focus on PLAs (we have our own Finance-specific ad extensions and advertising vehicles). This particular fact piqued my interest incredibly in Kenshoo’s new guide…

I’m a huge proponent of leveraging technologies from Product in Finance and vice versa. You can learn so much by investigating verticals other than your own, and leveraging ideas across categories. I picked up some solid tips and advice.

In Kenshoo’s guide, you’ll learn all about PLAs, Google Merchant Center, data feeds, product targets, important rules, and so much more. My absolute favorite parts of Kenshoo’s guide are the 8 best practices and common PLA mistakes. These sections truly provide some golden nuggets of info.

Kenshoo is one of the best digital marketing platforms around. They originally got started in the Product vertical so they know this stuff incredibly well. I highly suggest downloading Kenshoo’s free guide today to perfect your Product Listing Ad skills. Even if you aren’t in the Product category (like me), you will learn form this guide. As digital marketers, it’s all about generating new ideas. The best ideas often come from applying insights from one category to another, challenging the status quo. Elevate your PLA skills today!

Kenshoo PLA Guide

Image of Kenshoo PLA Guide © Kenshoo

Does Facebook Advertising Assist PPC?

Jan. 27

Do you advertise on Facebook? How about PPC (Google AdWords and Bing Ads)? If you’re a digital marketing professional, the answer is most likely a huge “Yes!” Both channels (Facebook/social) and also PPC are great on their own. However, have you ever wondered, does my Facebook advertising impact and assist my paid search? Many of us believe so, but have never performed a formal study to prove the correlation.

Thanks to Kenshoo, the leader in Bid Management Software and Social Advertising Platforms according to Forrester, I’m thrilled to share some answers. Kenshoo recently published a free whitepaper that proves a correlation between Facebook and PPC: Facebook Advertising Boosts Paid Search Performance.

I’m a huge fan of Kenshoo; They are all about tracking, analytics, technology, and innovation. Long story short, they are perhaps the best company to do this type of study. They have deep roots in this type of analysis, and that’s something I respect incredibly about Kenshoo.

Some high level findings (download the free whitepaper to learn more about the particular experiment, and how it was conducted):

  • +30% ROAS (Return on Ad Spend)
  • +24% AOV (Average Order Value)
  • +7% CTR (Click Through Rate)
  • -4.5% CPA (Cost Per Acquisition)

Figuring out budgets and media allocation for 2014? Make sure to set aside some extra funds for Facebook advertising (knowing the positive impact it has on core PPC), and don’t forget to reserve funds for amazing technologies such as Kenshoo!

Facebook Advertising Boosts Paid Search Performance

Image in this post © Kenshoo