Seattle Digital Marketing


There is a debate going on right now whether or not traditional marketing is better then Seattle Digital Marketing. I’m here to end this debate right now. Digital marketing is much better then the traditional ways. Here are some of the reasons why.

1) If the company is large enough, it can compete with any company out there. As long as the company uses it’s tech savvy resources wisely, they are going to do just fine. A smaller company might not be able to deal with certain ups and downs, but overall, a company strategy will survive better.

2) The costs will come down greatly. Traditionally, companies put out a lot of money for television, radio and print ad. Using digital marketing presents a platform the others don’t. Digital marketing also presents more options and at half the cost.

3) You can see how effective your business is. You can see how well it’s doing in real time. With traditional marketing, you can’t do this. You can adjust to certain changes more readily and easily. You won’t have the challenges that you do with print ads.

4) You can stay ahead of the game more easily. You can stay in contact with your customers more readily. You can see the changes happening right in front of your eyes. You also won’t have to wait for a response. Your associates and clients can get back to you sooner.

5) You can improve your strategy that much sooner. Gone are the days when you have to wait a week or so to get a response from a mail order. You get those orders right away. You get the responses with the click of a button. This will greatly improve your marketing. Doing it this way, it will allow you to see when and where you need to make changes.

6) The exposure is deniable. You want your company out there. You want to make connections. You want to hit demographics you’ve never hit before. Digital marketing allows you to do this. This will increase your readership. This will increase your sales and the direction of the company.

Gone are the days of advertising in phone books and newspapers. Though this still exists, a newer and more refined world is coming into focus. If your company wants to make it and survive, you need to go digital.

The Coming Integration of PR and SEO

Earlier this year, I published a Moz post that aimed to introduce the basic principles of public relations that SEOs and digital marketers, I argued, need to know. (Specifically, the post was on media relations and story-pitching as a means of getting coverage and “earning” good links.)

Following the positive response to the post, Moz invited me to host a recent Mozinar on the integration of PR and SEO. ( You can listen to it and download the slides here for free!) As a former print journalist who later became a digital marketer, I love to discuss this niche because I am very passionate about the topic.

In summary, the Mozinar discussed:

  • Traditional marketing and communications theory
  • Why both inbound and outbound marketing are needed
  • An overview of the basic PR process
  • How to use PR software
  • Examples of messaging and positioning
  • Where to research demographic data for audience profiles
  • How to integrate SEO into each step of the workflow
  • How SEO and PR teams can help each other
  • Why the best links come as natural results of doing good PR and marketing
  • “Don’t think about how to get links. Think about how to get coverage and publicity.”

At the end of the Mozinar, the community had some intriguing and insightful questions (no surprise there!), and Moz invited me to write a follow-up post to provide more answers and discuss the relationship between SEO and PR further.

Follow-ups to the PR Mozinar

Before I address the questions and ideas at the end of the Mozinar, I just wanted to give some more credit where the credit is certainly due.

People like me, who write for major publications or speak at large conferences, get a lot of attention. But, truth is, we are always helped immensely by so many of our talented colleagues behind the scenes. Since the beginning of my digital marketing career, I have known about SEO, but I have learned more about public relations from observing (albeit from a distance) The Cline Group’s front line PR team in Philadelphia over the years.

So, I just wanted to thank (in alphabetical order) Kim Cox, Gabrielle Dratch, Caitlin Driscoll, Max Marine, and Ariel Shore as well as our senior PR executives Bill Robinson and DeeDee Rudenstein and CEO Josh Cline. What I hope the Moz community learned from the Mozinar is what I have learned from them.

Now, onto the three Mozinar Q&A questions that had been left unanswered.

  • Why do you use Cision and not Vocus or Meltwater or others?

I do not want to focus on why The Cline Group specifically uses Cision. I would not want my agency (and indirectly Moz) to be seen as endorsing one type of PR software over another. What I can do is encourage people to read these writings from RMP Media Analysis, LinkedIn, Alaniz Marketing and Ombud, then do further research into which platform may work best for them and their specific companies and needs.

(Cision and Vocus recently agreed to merge, with the combined company continuing under the Cision brand.)

  • Do you have examples of good PR pitches?

I’ve anonymized and uploaded three successful client pitches to our website. You can download them here: a mobile-advertising network, a high-end vaporizer for the ingestion of medicinal herbs and a mobile app that helps to protect personal privacy. As you will see, these pitches incorporated the various tactics that I had detailed in the Mozinar.

Important caveat: Do not fall into the trap of relying too much on templates. Every reporter and every outlet you pitch will be different. The ideas in these examples of pitches may help, but please do not use them verbatim.

  • Are there other websites similar to HARO (Help a Reporter Out) that people can use to find reporters who are looking for stories? Are the other free, simpler tools?

Some commonly mentioned tools are My Blog U, ProfNet, BuzzStream and My Local Reporter. Raven Tools also has a good-sized list. But I can only vouch for My Blog U because it’s the only one I have used personally. It’s also important to note that using a PR tool is not a magic bullet. You have to know how to use it in the context of the overall public relations process. Creating a media list is just one part of the puzzle.

An infographic of integration continue reading here

Issaquah organic search engine optimization Services

Issaquah organic search engine optimization Services

When you are looking for Issaquah organic search engine optimization help, you need to remember what these organic SEO tools do for you. The idea behind local SEO is creating a brand for your business. You want to become the business in your area that is known for selling your particular brand of product and service. The steps below will make your Issaquah organic search engine optimization all the more effective.

The City NameYou need to be willing to attach the name of your hometown to the name of your business or products. The name of your city is going to be found along with the products and services you sell. When people search for the product, they will see that you are in Issaquah. When people search for Issaquah, they will see that you sell your products and services there.

Many people will find your business accidentally because they are searching for one thing of the other. You cannot expect people to search for your exact business name and a product together. They will find you because you are the expert in your city or with your product.

The Surrounding Cities

You need to use the names of the surrounding towns to bring in more customers. The people that live near your town may never discover your business if you do not attach your name to the metropolitan area. You want to be make yourself into the expert for your product or service in the entire area. Your brand has more to do with the area that you work in than the products you sell.

The Content

When you are producing content on your website, you want to use a wise combination of city names and product names. When these few items are used consistently, your business will turn up in search engine results with relative ease. The descriptions for your products need to have the name of the city, and general descriptions of your company need to carry both the name of the city and the name of your product.

When you combine these organic SEO options into one seamless marketing campaign, you will be able to brand your business as the expert in your area.

The Importance of User Experience for Digital Marketing: 5 Key Tips

The changing shape of the digital world as we know it is going to make an understanding of user experience even more imperative.

User experience is becoming an increasingly popular feature of the digital landscape. But as digital marketers, we don’t always have a clear view of what it is, and how it impacts our work.

In my work as a user experience designer, we often work closely with digital marketers. Although the budgets for both types of work often come under the broad heading of “marketing money,” the responsibilities of each and the outcomes they deliver vary considerably.

In this article, I’ll brief digital marketers on some of the fundamentals of user experience, and how it impacts their work.

1. User Experience Is Not Just About Interfaces

The biggest misconception about user experience is that it is about creating beautiful interfaces. While this is part of user experience, it’s really only a small part of a much larger discipline with a broader mandate. The act of designing an interface – most often when it occurs on a screen – is called user interface design, or interaction design.

This is a subset of user experience, and only part of a much broader spectrum of skills associated with the discipline.

Distilled to its essence, user experience is fundamentally about the relationship between people and technology. More than that, it’s about identifying and designing that relationship. As the amount of technology and digital disruption in the world increases, so too, the nature of this relationship comes to the fore. With wearables and the Internet of Things (IoT) becoming ever more prevalent, this disruption will increase, while the perceptions of user experience as being tied only to screens will also be challenged.

2. User Experience Touches the Product Itself, Not Just the Promotion of It

There is a fundamental difference between digital marketing and user experience, and it really boils down to this: marketing is about making people want things. Design is about making things that people want.

User experience is driven by design. This means that it tends to live more naturally toward the product design end of the spectrum. User experience designers have the habit of asking “why?” about many product decisions. This can at times place them at odds with marketing teams, who are normally more closely focused on how to drive more sales of a given, fixed product. At the same time, user experience designers often work in close proximity with digital marketing teams, and are often responsible for some of the optimization that happens with campaigns.

Inevitably in the course of doing this, user experience designers will start to challenge some of the assumptions of the product, based on their proximity to the users of it. This can help digital marketers, as it can give them valuable intelligence around how to sell or position a product more effectively.

3. Experience Happens Anyway – You Only Get to Decide Whether You’ll Design for It

Experiences with the products we promote happen, regardless of whether or not we’ve included them in our marketing plan. Put simply, the most important marketing we will ever do usually happens outside the moments or channels we market to, and it’s called experience.

Much of digital marketing is focused on the channels we can reach customers through: print, digital, mobile. But the problem is that customers are really just people with a need – which our product addresses.

And this is the hitch: people don’t have channels – they tend to live between the gaps in channels. Only relatively recently have we begun to address this, with concepts such as cross-channel experiences, or even omni-channel experiences. But these concepts are broken. They buy into the business logic, and seek to explain customers in terms of the businesses own capability, rather than the customers’ own needs.

This fundamentally cripples most marketing efforts from the outset, as much of the problem of conversion rates tend to live in these gaps. These gaps are where user experience design lives. Having a user experience designer as part of your digital marketing team will help to redress this imbalance.

4: User Experience Uses Multiple Research Approaches

Digital marketing typically doesn’t generate much in the way of research. Often, the relationship with research tends to be limited to interpreting the outputs of a broader marketing-focused research program. Marketing research tends to be focused more on quantifying a known market, for a fixed product. This tends to make it often focus much more on quantitative methods.

In contrast, user experience is an intensively research focused discipline, that is naturally focused on discovering and understanding real human needs that can be solved for with a well designed product. This means that the methodological focus for design research is qualitative in nature. This makes it excellent at framing a problem or situation, so that it can be more accurately assessed quantitatively.

The two approaches naturally complement each other, and help to both ensure that a product is generating real human value for customers, and that it is easily discoverable so that businesses can generate commercial value, also.

5. User Experience Will Subsume Much of What Currently Counts as Digital Marketing

Controversial? Maybe. Inevitable? Yes.

The social Web has already disrupted marketing to an incredible degree. What used to be primarily a discipline in managing returns on broadcast media expenditure has evolved to become a discipline of managing conversations and contributing to communities.

As a result, the onus has shifted to organizations to create real value for their customers. Many practitioners, indeed most companies, still struggle with this – you can’t buy good reviews for a bad product – not any that will survive the social Web, anyway.

So what will happen when not just people, but products become part of the social web? With the dawn of the Internet of Things, we’re faced with an even greater force for disruption – in the future, most interactions on the social Web will be between products, or products and people – not just people. And marketing has little to add to this.

We can’t sell to connected toasters or fridges. The ubiquity of technology promised by the Internet of Things promises to fundamentally shift the relationship and understanding we have with technology. It will no longer be something we can comfortably distance ourselves from, or that we can switch off or put into our pocket.

It will be everywhere, and invisible. It will be “on” forever. And so the core skills of digital marketing will cease to be attributable to digital marketing alone, and will instead be subsumed into larger conversations around digital products and services – more specifically, they will be essential ingredients in well designed products – not just optional bolt ons to a static, existing offering.

It is in this space that user experience thrives. Because as a discipline it has never been about technology, but about people. About understanding people and the role that technology should have in their lives, and what types of lives it might help people to lead.

What do you think? Is there a natural role for user experience designers in digital marketing, or is user experience simply digital marketing “done well”? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.


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Digital marketing’s social media and SEO – What you need to know

Digital marketing is an indispensable part of most brands’ marketing mix today. This is reflected in South African digital marketing expenditure, which according to PwC’s research, will reach R3.7bn in 2017. PwC also predicts that search marketing will remain the primary digital advertising format going into 2017.
Mobile search

By examining the top five Google search queries (Google Webmaster Tools) belonging to Website A (a website I have analysed over 12 months) in August 2014, I noticed that mobile searches were more specific and time-specific than the equivalent desktop searches. The top five desktop search queries were broad and brand-related. It is important to research and factor in the mobile browsing habits of a target market when compiling content for them on a site.

Apps – App Optimisation (ASO)

Apps play a key role in the usage of smartphones and tablets. So, it is imperative for brands’ with their own apps to capture this audience effectively. When it comes to users searching for apps on Google Play, Apple’s App Store or traditional Google search, it needs to rank well to assist in increasing the number and frequency of its downloads.

In short, the basic SEO principles apply to ASO – on-page optimisation, an exceptional user experience (on-page and app development), social media optimisation and other off-page techniques.

Voice search

In my opinion, voice searches are usually made through mobile devices because of their on-the-go convenience factor. Voice search queries differ from traditional searches. Voice-derived search queries are often longer than the average traditional search query. In most cases, voice searches appear in the form of questions. This may seem obvious, but a conscious effort needs to be made to accommodate voice search into a mobile SEO strategy.

Image search

Images play a large role when it comes to a website’s level of user engagement. When perusing Website A’s Google image search data for August 2014, the top five image searches relate to specific names of entities which, in turn, relate to those images. It is essential to make sure that a website’s images are optimised for search, to maximise a brand’s search exposure. This is especially significant if a brand is a visual one, such as a fashion brand.

Video search

Embedding online videos into websites is a popular way to engage with users, and rightfully so. Users consume vast quantities of online video on a daily basis and this trend continues to grow. The musician Psy’s Gangnam Style music video had been watched 2,095,558,384 (that’s 2 billion times plus) on YouTube when I wrote this article.

If a brand makes use of YouTube, then its YouTube channel and videos need to be optimised for traditional searches, YouTube searches and Google video searches. If these videos are embedded into a website, then one needs to optimise the relevant website page as well.

TV & search

Google has got TV covered. Google can potentially work out what a person is watching on TV by factoring in their location, the time and what’s currently on TV. This, in turn, may refine a person’s next search results. This system is already part of Google Now.

Organic search

Desktop organic search traffic is still king when it comes to the ‘quality’ of visitors, and when it comes to time spent on the website, pages viewed per visit, conversions (such as completing test drive and cell phone contract forms on a website) and the lowest bounce rate. So there should be no doubt that fully utilising this type of website traffic is important to make the most of these ‘high quality’ visitors. This is where SEO or search engine optimisation comes into play.

A fantastic user experience and exceptional, relevant content (websites with ‘thin’ content will be penalised further within Google search since the recent release of their Panda 4.1 search algorithm update) are integral components of properly executed SEO, all of which will increase the number of overall website conversions; no matter the source, whether it is from social media, paid search or display ads.

Google’s new Sitelinks Search Box

A user can now search a website’s content via a search box feature which has a more prominent position within a website’s search result listing. This helps remove a step in the search process for users who are looking for content on a large site. It is worth setting it up if it is going to improve users’ search experience relating to a website.

Google recommends this feature for vast websites, for example, those that have 1,000 pages or more (my estimate), such as Website A. In order for this functionality to be activated one needs to do the following:

Ensure that the site has an internal search feature and Google’s custom search works as well.
Add the Search Action markup.
Make appropriate use of canonical tags.

It makes sense that a gigantic website such as YouTube has such a feature:

Digital marketing’s social media and SEO – What you need to know

Google’s new Structured Snippets

Google has revealed that it will tweak some of its search result page (SERP) listings by incorporating additional, factual (such as an item’s specifications) information. According to Google: “Structured Snippets is a new feature that incorporates facts into individual result snippets in Web Search.” Unlike rich snippets (, Google does not require extra computer code (markup) to be added to the website for this new feature to work.

Google utilises factual data from useful, relevant tables of data from within website pages. I think that Structured Snippets have a great potential; they could be an exceptional add-on to a car brand website’s SERP listings for car models, by including some vehicle specifications. Below is an example of a Structured Snippet:

Digital marketing’s social media and SEO – What you need to know

Social media – Facebook still dominates

I touched on the high value of Facebook in my previous article, but I need to emphasise that Facebook can really be a force to be reckoned with if its organic (Facebook Page maintenance) and paid elements are implemented correctly. Facebook was the third-largest provider of visitors to Website A, after direct visits and organic search traffic.

Company A has a well-managed Facebook Page, which generates copious amounts of original and engaging content every day, along with an exceptionally-performing paid campaign (‘Like Ads’ and Promoted Posts). The reward for these activities was that Company A’s Facebook Page provided their website with a large number of ‘high quality’ visitors (with reference to the same website metrics as organic search’s ‘high quality’ visitors).

It is likely that most brands in South Africa already have Facebook Pages, but these brands should ensure that they are maximising their ROI from them.

Make the most of digital marketing

A digital agency should apply fresh thinking and innovative practices to digital marketing. Brands should spend the time to set concrete and worthwhile KPI’s for each of their digital marketing campaigns and should hold digital agencies fully accountable for them.