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5 Key Marketing Updates You Need to Know This Week – December 16th

Since marketing methods are always being updated, you need to be too. 

Stay in the know with these advertising news stories from the past weeks, updated December 16th, 2021.

1. Instagram’s Playback lets you relive your top Stories from 2021.

Instagram is jumping on the year-end-review trend with Playback.

  • Each user receives a curated Playback of 10 Stories from the past year.
  • Users can edit, add or remove Stories from their Playback list.
  • Influencers can re-promote their favorite Stories.
  • Playback is available as a limited feature for the next few weeks.

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2. 4 ways to create engaging SEO content.

Google encourages marketers to optimize for humans rather than algorithms to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs). High-quality content that efficiently and effectively addresses the user’s needs is the new standard.

The following principles and tactics can be used to develop content that ranks well, drives traffic and benefits searchers:

  • Develop a scannable structure. Your audience wants information in an easily digestible format. Because mobile devices have a narrow aspect ratio, the amount of content that can be viewed at one time is affected. This is why you should organize your content so users can quickly find the information they seek.
    • You may want to use the inverted pyramid of journalism to create content. Begin with the most relevant and impactful information that answers who, what, where, when and why. Then, add other important details and background information.
    • Use bullet points and lots of headers to break up walls of text. Engaging visuals facilitate reading and understanding the content.
  • Show expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness. Collectively known as EAT, demonstration of these concepts encourages trust for both users and search engines. Including experts in your content promotes credibility in your space. Showing your external recognition and awards, author biography, and influential pages about what your organization stands for and the work it performs increase your authority. Highlighting external reviews, using credible sources, adding high-quality external links, and presenting error-free content on a secure site enhance trust.
    • Regularly update your content with the latest news and developments. Pay attention to when your competitors share new information and how it affects search results. Set up alerts for when your rankings fall or content has not been updated for 90 days. Determine which updates should be made.
  • Answer your audience’s questions. Addressing users’ needs increases your search visibility and promotes conversations. You can use keyword tools and related search volume to determine which questions are the most relevant. You also can turn to social media and forums such as Reddit or Quora to see which questions your audience has. Surveying or talking with your customers can help as well.
  • Include links to your content. Conduct primary or secondary research to find a unique angle that would encourage journalists to link to your content. This increases your content amplification efforts.
    • You may want to include data visualizations and infographics to make a complicated topic easier to understand. Be sure to use alt text, captions and data summaries to elevate the descriptiveness for audience members who may be using assistive technologies for navigation of your content. This improves the user experience.
    • Including controversial opinions and unique perspectives in your content can generate additional links. Ego-bait lists made from the opinions of experts or a list of the experts can be influential as well.

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3. Avoid duplication in App Store optimization.

Have you been wondering how the App Store comes up with its search results? Gaining insight into how the algorithm works and some tips on using keywords can help your app rank higher.

  • App Store optimization (ASO) is based on keywords and ratings. Although the search algorithms are undocumented, looking at enough data can uncover patterns.
  • One way to show how keywords and ratings work together is by analyzing many apps that use the exact same keyword in the exact same way. For example, the popular keyword “brain training” brings in millions each month. The top 5 results follow the exact same format in their names: [brand] – Brain Training. This shows that the algorithm is sensitive to keywords and ratings.
  • Based on the real-life list being used for this example, the ratings are what determine how the apps are ranked. For instance, the #1 result, Impulse, has the most ratings, followed by Elevate, Lumosity, Peak and MindPal.
  • However, the list shows that although MindPal has more ratings than Elevate and follows the same template, MindPal is ranked fifth. This is because MindPal repeats the keyword “brain” in its subtitle: MindPal – Brain Training Fun Brain Games. Because the other apps do not repeat the keyword, and keyword placement trumps ratings, MindPal ranks lower than the competition.

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4. Study finds 81% of marketers view brand values as more important than ad buying.

According to a report from Advertiser Perceptions, corporate responsibility and brand values played a larger role in media buying in 2021 than in recent years.

  • 60% of marketers may downgrade or drop the media partners that do not meet their standards, even if they deliver on performance.
  • 39% of respondents cut spending with a major platform this year.
  • 54% cited factors such as hate and disinformation as their reasons to pull back.
  • 80% want clearer information about who profits from the ads they place.
  • These results likely were influenced by the pandemic and wider societal unrest highlighting the problems with spreading misinformation, hate speech and illicit content online.

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5. How to understand and effectively write meta descriptions.

Meta descriptions are one aspect of search engine optimization (SEO) for your e-commerce store. A meta description is an HTML meta tag that summarizes your webpage’s content in 155 to 160 characters. It encourages users to click through to your page to find the information they seek.

To write strong meta descriptions, focus on your highest-volume keywords. This includes prioritization of meta descriptions for your bestsellers and category page rather than every item in your shop. You
should emphasize your top 10 or 20 pages that get the most organic traffic from search engines to improve your click-through rate.

Read meta descriptions written by other e-commerce shop owners to get an idea of what the descriptions should look like.

  • Meta descriptions for a homepage should provide a short overview of what the site is about and an engaging reason to click the title tag to satisfy a user’s curiosity.
  • For a product page, meta descriptions should include tangible benefits for shoppers and what separates the item from all others. Customers should be encouraged to visualize themselves with the product and the emotions they may feel. Keep in mind that a half- sentence may increase the click-through rate (CTR).
  • Meta descriptions for a category page or collection page should include relevant information about the category or collection, use high-volume keywords and include simple action phrases to encourage clicks. Consider adding emojis to call out sub- collections of products on a product collection page. You also may want to use numbers and power words, such as “free” or “exclusive,” to grab shoppers’ attention. Include any special offers you are running, such as free shipping or extended warranties, as well.

Focus on what would entice a searcher to click on your meta description. This includes what you are offering and why a shopper should buy from you. Let users know what you do and what your unique
selling proposition is. This may involve what made you believe your business would get customers or what returning customers say about your business. Show off your brand as much as possible using relevant keywords, as you would with an elevator pitch.

Stay within 155 characters so Google does not cut off the rest. Include your most important text at the start of the description, such as action phrases or a bit about your brand. Add a call to action at the end, such as “shop now,” “explore the collection” or “discover new trends,” so shoppers click through to your page.

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Need a hand?

At Operam, we look at your marketing as a whole rather than in isolated silos. As a result, we optimize the value you realize from every step of the customer journey, no matter how many channels it entails. Contact Operam today to learn how we can help you reach your marketing goals.