Social Media & SEOSocial Media & SEO: In the last month or so I have published quite a few posts on Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). I talked about the importance of Basic SEO Knowledge, the chances Google offers you as a marketer, Self SEO Diagnostics and Developing a Keyword Strategy.

But this blog is about marketing on the social web. So, what’s with all the SEO?

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McKinsey change the purchase funnel!

Everyone knows the purchase funnel gets narrower towards the end, right? The entire marketing process has been aligned to this principle for more than forty years.

Well, now we can think again. McKinsey’s recent global study shows a definite change in the way consumers research and buy products. And that opens up ways of smarter marketing.

McKinsey have replaced the traditional purchase funnel with the ‘Customer decision journey’. At the beginning of this journey, the consumer begins with an ‘Initial consideration set’ of brands or products. So far, so much the same.

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A quick check to see where your company head is at…

Depending on which source you prefer, the average person is exposed to anywhere from 2 to 3,000 advertising messages each day. That’s an awful lot of noise, an awful lot of people shouting about their product.

People are so bombarded by advertising messages that they are becoming immune. It’s not just banners and display ads. Most companies treat their website just like an advertising brochure: a chance to shout about their product.

The challenge is to stand out. People are hardwired to notice things that are different. So instead of talking about ‘you’ – your product features and spec, try talking about ‘them’ – the problems you solve for your prospects and customers.

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Their skills versus your needs…

In my previous blog post I talked about the difference between Online publicity and Online PR. I argued it had to do with the difference between making noise and building relationships.

Of course both can help to drive business. The same goes for advertising. Some need it, some don’t. Some need a little, some need a lot. It really depends on your business objectives and the product or service you are selling.

Choosing an online agency to help you meet your business objectives can be quite a difficult task. First, there are simply so many agencies offering so many different disciplines all claiming to be online ‘experts’. Second, on the web the lines between marketing and PR have blurred.

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The difference between online publicity and online PR…

Once upon a time marketers had two main ways of getting their product or services noticed by consumers: advertising and publicity.

The principle of advertising is based on interruption. In order to get people’s attention you need a large degree of creativity or even humour. This helps people absorb your message and makes it stick.

The principle of publicity is based on getting placement in mass media. To compete in the battle for media inches, your story needs to have good news value.

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