How to be a digital marketing blocker

14 May

By Jonny Cameron

Disclaimer: None of the below refers to any clients existing or otherwise.(Or does it? [no it doesn’t])

If you work in a digital marketing agency in Northern Ireland (or anywhere else for that matter), I bet you’ve come across the digital marketing blocker. The person in an organisation who ignores the bigger picture. You might even be one yourself without knowing?

Head of digital blockage a

The Blogging Naysayers

When is a blog not a blog? The problem is one of semantics, people read blogs without knowing they are blogs.  Mention the word “blog” to the uninitiated and they might turn their nose up, as if to blog, to read blogs and to know what blogging is, represents an esoteric world of geekiness or some newfangled internet thing that will go away. Well it won’t. Everyone reads blogs and they’re deeply ingrained in the digital landscape, every time you use a search engine (something the naysayers admit to doing frequently) you could be on the verge of engaging with a blog. Yes there are rubbish blogs, but the good ones build readerships, get shared and can contribute to wider marketing goals.

The Blogging Yeasayers

These are the ones who blog without a purpose. Like a headless chicken they think that if they churn out press releases, or create a keyword rich headline, that the effort has been worth it (all 15 minutes of effort in some cases). But where’s the proof? Who likes it? Comments on it and shares it? How has this piece of content contributed to any digital marketing outcomes?

The Gloomy Bloggers

Of course they can blog themselves! They’ve got the expertise, which is great and some real knowledge that should give value to any reader, but then they start the blog with something like “I’ve always thought blogging was a bit self-indulgent, but here goes”. That might have worked as a shocking opening line was it not for the fact that it was a stand alone comment. It was an introduction to the blog that never came full circle i.e. concluding that blogging wasn’t so bad after all! The blog is designed for people to read and should be valuable, so starting with such  cynicism is both irrelevant and doesn’t do your chances of people reading the next sentence many favours.

The Obsessive Searchers

Choose from:

·         “I searched for ourselves this morning and couldn’t see any of our ads”

·         “I searched this morning and we weren’t in position number one”

·         “Bill from accounts searched <<insert uber competitive term, you know, the one that costs £15 per click>> last Tuesday and was concerned that we didn’t show”

Popular search terms in popular industries cost more to bid on in paid search. It makes no sense bidding on something that will cost you £15 per click (unless you have a ridiculous budget) unless you can justify that the £15 investment is more likely to convert into a sale than bidding on relevant terms that are cheaper.

Your ads won’t show all the time as they are spread out according to your budget. The more you search the same term and don’t click on Google’s suggestions, the more you are likely to see different results, particularly when searching from the same IP address.

In search engine advertising, position isn’t necessarily always everything!

The Offline Bullies

The offline bullies bully the poor old world of digital. They fail to assign the appropriate value to an online inbound enquiry vs. outbound marketing e.g. cold calling.

Consider a business that sells socks. The business has two potential leads

1) from a website enquiry where the potential customer searched in Google “buy socks in Belfast”

2) from a cold call, where the potential candidate said they were interested in buying socks

Which of the above prospects is further down the purchase funnel? The answer is number one. They are actively aware of the product, they have an intent to buy and therefore closing the sale should be easier than number two, who was a passive prospect that has been persuaded that they might need to buy some socks. Throw in the cost and time associated with the call centre and it’s easy to see why an inbound enquiry online is potentially worth more than offline. This should be considered when looking at the cost per enquiry and value per enquiry for each channel.

The Facebook’s Too Frivolous Club

Just as the telephone has too many shortcomings to be a form of communication, Facebook is nothing but a LOL-provoking waste of time. However, the Amazon UK page has 4,815,666 Likes and counting, so there might just be a case for Facebook brand pages.

The Pen-Friend Emailers

Ever had a pen friend as a kid? You write to them and rattle off inane things about yourself. Favourite colour, pet’s name, a particularly delicious sandwich you recently ate.

Companies still do this. An email that they think looks nice, with no consideration of usability. A message that tells recipients about the company and about the product, full of unqualified sales messages.

The Website Designers

The website is designed for themselves and not their different types of user. There’s no research, feedback or consideration for different types of user or the ideal customer. No thought into the wants, needs and desires of the customer or the obstacles to them converting.

I bet I’ve missed a few. Feel free to add your own below.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: