Marketing Festival truly lives up to its slogan “World-Class Digital Marketing Event.” Two days packed of inspiring and informative presentations, the best of the best speakers in their fields from all over the world and drinking quality Czech beer after the conference…
Marketing Festival really stood out with the level of preparedness and organization that the MF team worked hard to achieve. I would compare it to the MozCon event and put it in my top 3 marketing conference events.
Thanks to the MF team for providing this great event. Here’s our summary of day 1.
Paddy Moogan @paddymoogan
The future for marketers: creativity, technology and strategy
Paddy Moodan from Distilled opened the Marketing Festival with a great overview of the world of search in the past, present and future. We’ve seen how Google’s updates start making the SEO job not-so-straightforward as it used to be. During the SEO beginnings prior Panda and Penguin, there were a few key techniques which lead to a successful project. However Google kept shifting the importance of the search results from links and keywords towards people and context of search. Nowadays, post Hummingbird, we can clearly see that understanding intent of search is one of the key focuses of Google, and it’s doing a great at it. Paddy showed us how Distilled adapted to the changes and invested in outreach and PR and really focused on content creativity. The three big trends he talked about in search were:
Trend 1: Robots are filtering everything we see
Facebook filtering information from its news feed, Gmail’s ranking for important mails, Twitter’s intent to filter tweets (similar to Facebook) – all clear examples of the first big trend mentioned above. Paddy’s advice on how to break the filter bubble was to invest in a wide range of traffic sources – referral, email, organic, cpc, social, display, social etc.
A great way of thinking about content creation that Distilled uses is summarized by these 6 principles:
Following each principle from that framework, gives you the chance to actually effectively evaluate all content ideas by exchanging useful feedback.
Trend 2: Robots are predicting what we want to see
After Hummingbird the ability of Google to understand user queries has significantly improved. An important part in understanding a question is the context it’s being asked in. Implicit signals like what is the device you are searching from, where are you at the moment, who are you, are overpowering explicit results in the search query. Google’s goal is to take all these signals and predict what its users need with minimal effort from their side.
Trend 3: Content marketing is mobile marketing
According to many predictions mobile traffic will surpass desktop traffic within the next year or so. It’s no surprise that Paddy underlined the importance of mobile in his presentation. Thinking mobile first is essential for any online marketing campaign and yet people are still underestimating it.
Brian Dean @Backlinko
7 Super-Practical Techniques to Rapidly Build Your Email List
While many know Brian for his Link Building and Content Creation tips, at the Marketing Festival he chose to speak about the Lead Generation process. He focused on a bit overlooked technique, namely the on-site e-mail list generation.
Brian revealed that for the year 2014 90% of his revenue came from mail subscriptions. In order to shed some light on how he was able to achieve that he explained the 7 winning strategies:
- Use Feature Box – it’d be great if you can dedicate all of the above-the-fold space to it. Take into account the sidebar blindness of Internet user and position your opt-in form to the front and in the center.
- Use Home Page Squeeze Page – use testimonials of industry experts and/or clients to increase conversions.
- Use Social Squeeze Page (have a great copy, create a video, and request email submission if the visitor wishes to watch the entire video).
- Increase conversions at your About Page – have at least one opt-in form on the page (if a person’s reading your About page, he is already intrigued by your services and company).
- Use Popups wisely – as annoying as they might seem they still positively affect conversions:
a) Focus on Exit Intent Popups.
b) Customize Popups content to the specific page they are associated with.
- Upgrade not-converting content – listen to your readers and attempt to improve the given page content as per their advice/requests and don’t forget to add a call-to-action on the page.
- Expand your Guest Post – create a content upgrade for your guest post and prepare a landing page on your site for those who’ll interact with your invitation in your guest post.
“It’s time to go all-in on email.”
Avinash Kaushik @avinash
Keynote: goodbye Faith, Hello Data Driven Agile Marketing!
Avinash’s unique presenting style won the Marketing Festival audience. A combination of inspiration and awe dominated during his hour and a half long presentation.
Avinash started with the issues he saw with the modern web, namely that there’s too much useless, annoying and borderline (and in some cases not even) spam content. His message was to clean up the chaos on the web page and to provide value to the user first and then require attention rather than the other way around.
He presented his solution to the problem – following his new business framework, which aims to understand search intent. His framework splits audiences the following way:
- See: Largest addressable qualified audience
- Think: Largest addressable qualified audience with some commercial intent
- Do: Largest addressable qualified audience with loads commercial intent
- Care: People who buy 2 times or more. The first time might have been a mistake
People usually concentrate on ‘Do’ and ‘Care’ but Avinash urges us to approach optimization more holistically and don’t leave any audience behind. Another approach involved considering when you can make profit from your audiences:
- Near – 30 days
- Medium – 90 days
- Long – 3 months
Depending on whether you are pursuing a long-term or a short-term gain you are to address different audiences. The first thing you should worry before making money though is how to make your audiences happy.
Different audiences are reached best by different channels. For example paid search is good for ‘Think’ and ‘Do’ mainly, while Youtube is good for ‘See’ and ‘Think’ and bit of ‘Do’.
Another point that Avinash made is that people often mess up when measuring audiences. You need to dig deeper into the strong and weak sides of each of your channels. Take advantage of each channel’s strong sides and don’t use just one criteria to compare channel’s performance.
Peter O´Neill @peter_oneill
Making Analytics Valuable
Peter’s presentation was next in line after Avinash’s talk, so Peter modestly admitted that he cannot compete with such a distinct speaker. Thus instead of trying to inspire the audience he said that he’d concentrate on offering actionable tips that would give positive results in a short period of time.
- Peter advised to focus more closely on the Campaign tracking stage. He urges to add campaign parameters to urls in order to avoid working with biased data in terms of referring sources. This could be achieved both automatically via tools or manually.
- Always record the full url of the viewed page along with its referrer. This will help you manage better your 404 error pages.
- Record on-site search results and identify searches with 0 results – create content for those queries.
- Set negative goals and take actions against on-site errors.
- Identify true sessions by channel.
- Identify differences in performance via horizontal funnels (create a goal for each checkpoint).
- Use smart reporting:
- Weekly Performance Report – avoid flashy designs and stick to a small number of key metrics, use comparisons, trends and segmentation.
- Tactical Reports: you can draft Merchandise Report to verify product popularity, revenue, warning signals, opportunities; or you could create a Content Report to optimize your content creation process.
- Entry Points vs Traffic Sources – use bounce or conversion rate to evaluate each traffic source.
- Performance Diagnostic Report – account for traffic, engagement, performance, etc.
“Don’t you want to know what your work is worth?”
Julie Joyce @JulieJoyce
How We’ve Built 20,000 Links By Hand
The first link building presentation at the Marketing festival surely was quite informative. Julie was honest and admitted that she might have once used shady link building techniques, but hey – at that time site-wide links as well as forum commenting and article Bio links were not yet condemned as risky and spammy after all.
Julie gradually gathered a solid team of link builders and never failed her fair instinct to focus on manual link building only. The statistics (based on her experience) she shared with the festival attendees were priceless:
- The average number of monthly links created by a link builder amount to 34.
- The average number of hours it takes to get one link is 4.14.
- The average number of emails needed to get a live link is between 6 and 10.
Julie also gave away some pretty interesting LB strategies:
- Search for a prospect far back in Google SERPs (start after page 10 in Google).
- Used advanced search operators (inurl:blog, etc.)
- Be creative when looking for prospects (look in Quora, Bing, Reddit, Dogpile, DuckDuckGo, Twitter, Facebook, StumbleUpon).
- Use tools for content and prospect ideas (see in “Recommended Tools” below).
- Consider images as valuable linkable asset – webmasters are much more inclined to link to you via an image than via text.
- Interviews are great linkable assets.
- Socially promoted content will bring you new links.
MillionShort – helps you automatically go to a specific page back in Google SERPs.
TalkWalker Alerts – an alternative to Google Alerts.
ContentGems – helps you search content by kws.
LinkRisk Peek – helps you identify link placement opportunities.
Suggest Tool – fascilitates kw brainstorming (based on results from Google, Amazon, Bing and YouTube- good for content idea generation).
TinEye – reverse image search tool.
“Your Outreach Will Fail If Your Content Is Not Link-Worthy.”
Karel Tlusťák @ROIHuntercom
Advanced performance marketing on Facebook – how Facebook can beat the Google?
Karel greeted the audience with a question that has raised a number of disputes lately: “Can Facebook beat Google?”
He introduced the essential Facebook metric eCPM and the formula behind it:
eCPM= bid/1000 * eCTR + quality score + pacing
As Karel explains eCTR is based on 140 factors including object/domain/campaign/page/account history, creative, etc. He shares that one should strive to achieve equal distribution of his Ads on FB – a process better known as pacing.
- Here are some of the best tips Karel shared with the audience:
- Use different bidding strategies to address different audiences.
- Mobile apps are a huge factor in FB – 65% of FB impressions happen on mobile.
- Posting low quality Ads on FB will hurt youe eCPM.
- Predictive remarketing is the future.
- Use multiproduct ads.
- FB‘s „AdSense“ program is available only on mobile.
- FB has a special advertising platform called ATLAS for partners (big spenders) only. It uses FB targeting for offline marketing campaigns.
- Free credits from FB are available for startups. You can get from $20,000 or $60,000 in free tools and services if you get approved.
Sandra Camacho @sandramcamacho
Prepare. Assemble. Hack. The Building Blocks of Attribution
There was a representative of the Google crowd among the speakers as well. Sandra Camacho joined Google in 2010 and is currently Attribution regional Product Expert in the Paris office. Her presentation provided a useful guide on how to succeed with Attributions. Here are the main three phases she split the process into:
- Prepare: Use accurate data, know the concepts & define objectives. Before you start you need to do the following:
- Build a proper data foundation
- Understand the concepts well
- Define objectives & secure internal buy-in
- Assemble: Set up your baseline reporting properly in Multi-Channel Funnels. The main points here:
- Choose the proper conversion
- Pick the timeframe and look-back window
- Build a custom channel grouping
- Hack: Go beyond the basics with filters, segments, and other customizations. Main goals:
- Run amok in your custom channels
- Play with must-have conversion segments
- Be careful with the interaction type filter
Here are some resources which will help you advance your skills in the subject:
Craig Sullivan @OptimiseOrDie
20 Simple Ways to Fuck Up your AB tests
The final presentation for the Day 1 of the Marketing festival was fun and pretty relaxed. Craig’s list of the top 20 mistakes in A/B testing are a great guide for practically any online marketer. Below you can see the most essential points Craig made:
- Do not consider 95, 99% confidence to be a representative metric for your test – be patient and try to reach higher confidence levels before you stop gathering data.
- Always test whole cycles. It’s best if your test duration includes minimum two business cycles, or one purchase cycle, or 250 conversions.
- Have cross channel, cross device design, testng and QA.
“Growing isn’t a strategy, it’s a result”