Why SEO Is Like Leg Day At The Gym

The other morning I was checking my Linkedin feed for no specific reason at all, other than its a great B2B platform and I stumbled across a great little video which got me thinking, when was the last time I did any ground level SEO work on our work website? Probably months ago. So like the gym, I love doing cardio, strength and conditioning work but I’m not loving leg day so much. That’s a lie. I like doing leg day but I just don’t love it.

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The other morning I was checking my Linkedin feed for no specific reason at all, other than its a great B2B platform and I stumbled across a great little video on image optimization for SEO. This got me thinking, when was the last time I did any ground level SEO leg work on our work website? Probably months ago. So like the gym, I love doing cardio, strength and conditioning work but I’m not loving leg day ever. That’s a lie. I like doing leg day but I just don’t love doing it.

So I thought I would share how I go about doing some leg work on SEO for images. According to the video, images sizes on your website should be <50kB. This will help you speed up your website’s load time and Google is really looking favourably on this at the moment. Secondly, all images should have Image Alternative Text Tags which should describe the image in plain english e.g. A Photo of The Copper Coastline. This is so search engines can crawl your info/keywords better and in turn help you get up the rankings.

Here is how I do the leg work for image sizes:

  1. Download Screamingfrog app.
  2. Run the SEO Site audit for your website.
  3. Export the results.
  4. Open the CSV file in MS excel
  5. Apply a filter to the topline.
  6. Sort by largest to smallest image size. The cut off is 50kB. Anything over this could do with replacing.
  7. Use an image compressor for PNG files. I used this one. And Google Picasa for compressing Jpegs.
  8. Replace and delete the larger files.

I was horrified to find one logo PNG image that was 400kB! So after I compressed it became 5kB. So thats an awesome result. Imagine over a website how much load time you can save…probably not that much but it all helps thats what I like to tell myself.

Screamingfrog will also give you the statistics and results for the Alt Tags again making this easy but you have to put in the leg work.

Final tip. JPEG is okay for your website but PNG is better as it compresses a lot small in size without losing too much quality.

And don’t skip SEO day!

The 5 Email Marketing Commandments

Over the last couple of years I have fallen in and out of love with email marketing. By the way I am currently back in love with email marketing because it is my No. 1 most effective marketing tool.

On one hand we are being bombarded with crap email and that creates a lot noise that sometimes inhibits the great emails getting through to the end users. On the other hand I have seen some great emails that tick all my boxes. The objective of all great email campaigns is to realise revenue for the sender. I am assuming that everybody has access to an ESP (Email Service Provider) like Mailchimp, Constant Contact, Pardot etc.

With that in mind I have come up with my 5 email marketing commandments:

#1 Gain Permission

Wether you have a Opt-in form on your website, app sign up, email enquiry form etc there are lots of ways to get that valuable email. I find a check box to opt in to marketing emails works the best. If the person is already a customer then you a legally allowed to send that person email marketing pertaining to your products. As a side note always make the statement that you never pass emails on to third parties.

#2 Segment

Segmentation is the basis of all marketing. Depending on your objectives for your campaign you might segment on the basis of gender, age, location, profession, industry type, previous spend or activity rate. The more you focus down the better you can tailor the content to get the customer to respond to your CTA’s (call to action) or links.

#3 Personalise the Approach

Dear Darragh, nothing makes me happier when I see a well designed email that has my name in the first line in the body as a salutation. Its obvious you have my details so do something well with them. I also like to see ‘Darragh, you exclusive offer awaits’ type subjects. But dont make a crapper offer I have already ignored previously…wow me. Also make sure the sender’s email address is a persons name and not an info@ or sales@ etc. People want to open emails from other people.

Also time of day is worth considering. It has to be a good time for your reader. B2B = Tuesday to Thursday 8.30 – 5pm. Friday opens are down around 8% due to people being out of office. B2C = 5.30pm – 8pm.

#4 Create Relevant Content

This is the hard part of email marketing and marketing in general. You have an interested or semi-interested prospect how do you keep them interested. Its by sending them content they actually want not crappy content that you think they want. There are several ways to come with great content. Be creative! Talk to your customers, sales guys, service people and get to the issues that people want to talk about. Offers, promotions etc are great but you have to limit these in order not to dilute your branding efforts.

The format of the email is important. Whats your open rate for mobile, desktop, tablet etc. Tailor your email to these or all platforms. Apple iphones account for approximately 50% of opens in B2C.

#5 Report & Manage Data

CTR’s, unique opens, unsubscribe rates these are the important ones to focus on. The industry stand for an Open rate is 15-20%. Can you link back purchases to your email campaigns? The last part of the reporting and managing data is to take off hard bounces off your email database. This will improve the quality of your data and in turn increase your KPI’s.

Have fun with email.

Keep the faith.

Does Remarketing work?

Does Remarketing Work? and other display advertising thoughts.

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Does Remarketing Work? and other display advertising thoughts.

So to answer your question in the first sentence. Yes and results vary , ‘It depends’ (which is a great term to keep in your toolbag when you have opposing views when you re in a tight spot). So I googled ‘does remarketing work?’ and there was no hard evidence to say either way.

Here’s how I look at it. It depends on what type of brand you have. Is it B2B? In short, be careful you are not confusing your audience base and wasting money. Is it a B2C mass branded product or ecommerce website? Then give it a go if it suits your brand’s personality.

Remarketing and DDA (Digital Display Advertising) is a tool that has an incredibly low CTR. CTR’s are typical 0.1%-0.2%. So thats 1 in every 1,000 people. But if you have numbers (audience) in the 000,000’s then you brand deserves to be supported and exposed to relevant publisher and popular websites, like you national daily newspaper website.

The rule of thumb when budgeting for a emarketing campaign. Spend 80% on SEO content, PPC social ads etc. This is where you get ROI (return on investment). Then spend the remaining 20% on DDA (Digital Display Advertising) and remarketing exercise. Display advertising can also be a good measure of the effectiveness of an overall campaign.

Remarketing is different. It depends on your brand. Personally, I dont mind Amazon remarketing to me. I know how it works and I commend them for getting it right. I also forget about the ads pretty quick so it doesn’t impact my perception of them or frequency of purchasing on their platform. If a lesser brand remarkets me for 30 days with the same ad then they are pestering me and lost me for ever or at least for a while until I forget.

Remarketing is still fairly new in terms of digital marketing. Practice trial and error but make sure you do it right. Dont remarket to people for more than 7 days. Talk to your peers, employees, focus groups, brainstorm…whatever. Know your audience, targeting, attractive popular websites, times/days, bidding etc.

In conclusion, Remarketing doesn’t influence me personally but it is another branding tool. If I want to buy something I am responsible enough to need/want it and go back to the website to purchase it. Does remarketing serve as a reminder or influencer tool? Yes, all branding has an effect on the end user but from a management perspective the metrics dont add up or give you a definitive ROI. Much like newspaper ads which are very cheap right now.

Keep the faith.