Category Archives for Marketing

How to Keep Your Marketing Team Together Using Calendar Apps

To manage my projects, I work with a team of five people, including myself. It’s not a big team, but it took us time to set up an effective marketing routine among the 5 of us.

Every month we take on a series of tasks for our brand, working to increase exposure, solidify social presence, enhance the authority and generate leads that become conversions.

How to Keep Your Marketing Team Together Using Calendar Apps

This is difficult, not only the tasks we set for ourselves but also coordination among five people, three of whom live outside of the country and three who handle matters on a local and national level.

Add to this struggle the recurring need to include other people into the mix. We have premium members with whom we need to schedule support calls,  #vcbuzz hosts with whom we need to coordinate weekly Twitter chats, and influencers and partners with whom we need to meet.

We have been through every possible productivity tool, team management platform, and task manager known to man. We sat through demos of major SaaS solutions that offer task management features and even got their help in setup.

It wasn’t until we had been working together more than a year that things finally clicked into place. Which calendar apps actually worked for our ragtag team of global misfits?


Google Calendar App and Emails Notifications

You see, it came down to simple convenience. Having these fancy platforms would work for a while, but it was a hassle. No one used them for any other work, and they didn’t want to stop using what they had been using before.

Some of my team used Evernote, Trello, or Producteev. I use Zenkit. Getting on a whole other dashboard just for our projects and being unable to integrate them into our wider ones made it a chore that no one wanted to deal with.

Google Calendars and emails became the most effective solution for us. It was not only easy to integrate into different platforms but also familiar in that we already used both tools on a daily basis. They were easy to sync up on any device and could be shared and worked on with others.

Different calendars could be made, and mass emails could be sent with a record of the conversation.

To this day, we use this combo for our task list and conversations, which includes links to event announcements and necessary pending items on the to-do list in emails.

First, you will need to create a dedicated calendar for your in-team tasks and meetings. Once it is created, you can grab your link by:

  1. Clicking on “Settings” in the top-right
  2. Selecting your new calendar in the list
  3. Clicking “Access permissions”
  4. Setting your calendar to “Public”
  5. Clicking the “Get sharable link” button and copy your link from there

Once you share this link with your team members, friends, and community, they will see your newly added events without you having to manually notify anyone.

From there:

Step One – Create Event

To create an event in Google Calendars, sign in to your account and go to the main Calendars page. There will be a big button that says “Create”. This is where you can put your event details (name, date, involved people, etc.).

create event

The event name should be something relevant, such as the project name, and then add events in there.

What makes this convenient is that you can choose to see only that calendar by clicking on the little arrow on each individual calendar. That will show you events related only to that set.

Step Two – Double Check Details

In the popup that appears when you choose to create an event, you will be able to select your details. These include name, date, time, location, description, who is invited/has to be notified, who can make changes to the event, and if/when it repeats.

One of the most important tasks is to double-check these details before sending the notification! While it might not seem like a huge deal, you can send a notification to everyone signed up for the event when you make a change). Be cautious though, since it gets annoying really quickly if multiple changed events are going to your email. Trust me.

Step Three – Use Your Link Everywhere

Finally, you need to hyperlink the event entry in your emails. This is pretty self-explanatory.

Following the link will take them to the Google Calendar entry or will allow them to add it to their own calendar by clicking on one of the button options. They will find all of the information you included there.

Depending on your event, there may be different places you may want to include your link, for example:

  • Embed your calendar on your master page. If you have an internal page that you use for cross-team updates, you can embed your whole calendar there. This is what we did on our Twitter chat page.
  • The beauty of this method is that you need to do that once: The embedded calendar will update itself.
    Import Google Calendar events to your Facebook page using this Zapier integration to alert your fans or team members of each newly added event.
  • Include your calendar link in your email signature. This will automatically update everyone who receives your email. You can use these email signature examples to set up yours, so it is highly informative, yet usable.

email signature setup

You can add your calendar link to your email signature using the “HTML” app from the “Add-ons” tab inside the WiseStamp dashboard

All in all, Google Calendar is free, extremely flexible, and easily integrate into other Google products including my favorite one, Google Spreadsheets, which makes it my preferred scheduling solution.


ContentCal and Campaign Calendar

While Google Calendar is great for all kinds of scheduling and organizing workflow, we had to find another app for content and social media marketing.

When you work with remote employees, you are facing two main problems:

  1. Keeping everyone on track and productive.
  2. Keeping everyone motivated (It is too easy to focus on your current tasks and never look out of the box when you are isolated from the rest of the team).

I think we have solved both of these problems with ContentCal, a collaborative social media sharing platform that unites your whole team around building up your brand-owned channels.

ContentCal is pretty lightweight: There aren’t hundreds of task management and reporting features to manipulate. But it does its job very well, without taking lots of time on set-up and training.

  • Add your team members as contributors (can contribute social media updates) or managers (can edit and publish).
  • Create a system where every team member is responsible for their own piece (for example, if someone is working on a chat schedule, they are tasked with publicizing and promoting each event).


Once set, your calendar will build itself with everyone participating on a daily basis.

Furthermore, you can schedule upcoming campaigns for your whole team to see what’s coming. Each campaign can have a brief, and your team members also can contribute to it to share their research results and ideas.

Campaign briefs are minimal, but they work great for storing ideas and organizing your upcoming plans:

contentcal campaign brief

Use campaign briefs to put down your ideas for keywords, assets, etc.

It’s Easy!

I am in love with these calendar apps, and, of course, we all use email. So using these apps for task management, team management, marketing, and audience reach makes perfect sense. Add in the fact that both are free, and you have a powerful reason to give it a try.

The post How to Keep Your Marketing Team Together Using Calendar Apps appeared first on Content Marketing Consulting and Social Media Strategy.


7 Tips for Image Optimization

Are you looking to gain an edge in SEO? If your image optimization isn’t up to snuff, you could be missing out on traffic, user engagement, and sales.

Google looks at more than 200 factors when deciding which website to rank for a specific search query. While having a well-optimized image won’t help sub-par content rank number one, it can help you stand out from other sites that don’t optimize their images.

7 Tips for Image Optimization

The good news? Image optimization isn’t particularly complicated. Just a few changes to your current image process could help your site gain more traffic and leads, resulting in more sales.


Why Is Image Optimization Important?

Well-optimized images get better visibility in Google, which brings in more traffic. That’s the number one reason sites need to optimize their images, but there are many other benefits as well:

  • Improve the user experience: Well-optimized images that display correctly improve UX by making your site easier to navigate. Large images, for example, can take up the entire screen or cover other elements on the page.
  • Faster site speed: When it comes to SEO, speed matters. Images that are large or formatted incorrectly can slow down your site, killing your ranking and annoying site visitors.
  • Makes your site more accessible: Some optimization steps, like adding alt tags, can make your site easier to navigate for those using screen readers. Web accessibility is not only good for site visitors; it’s good for SEO, too.

While image optimization might feel like another step in a never-ending quest to improve SEO, it can have a significant impact on ranking and UX.

How do you make sure images aren’t holding your site back?


7 Image Optimization Tips for Your Website

Technical SEO can get pretty complicated, especially if you aren’t familiar with the latest Google algorithm updates and what they mean. The good news is image optimization isn’t as complicated as other aspects of SEO—and it doesn’t seem to change quite as often.

Ready to make sure your images help your SEO? Here’s what you need to know.


1. Choose the Right Image File Type

Using the wrong image file type can cause your images to be displayed incorrectly, look blurry, even impact whether users can see your images. But there’s a ton of different formats for images—vectors, JPEGs, raster, PNG, GIFs.

Beautiful Images

Which image type is best for SEO? Generally, you’ll want to use either JPEGs or PNGs.

JPEG, aka Joint Photographics Expert Group, is a popular image file type. They can be displayed by just about any type of device and can show millions of colors, so they preserve the coloring of your images well.

JPEGs do use lossy compression, resulting in some lost data during compression, so they’re not ideal for professional photography. However, they work fine for featured images in blog posts, and similar images.

Another popular type of image is PNG, which can also be displayed on any type of device. These use lossless compression, which means they don’t lose data during the compression process. They also support elements like transparent backgrounds. However, the file sizes tend to be much larger.

These are the most popular images for web publications. Here’s when I recommend using them:

Use JPEGs for blog post images, screenshots, etc. The smaller size will protect site speed, and most images will be clear enough. If the quality isn’t good enough and your site speed is good, feel free to switch to PNG format.

Use PNGs for icons, logos, and images where someone might zoom in. PNGs are larger but slightly higher-quality images. When image quality matters, use a PNG file.

I strongly recommend against using other image formats on your site, especially GIFs. I love a good GIF, but they really do slow your site down.


2. Compress Your Images

Image compression takes large image files and makes them smaller so they’re easier to load on the internet or store on your device. Image compression strikes the perfect balance between size and image quality when done well.

The two types of image compression are lossy and lossless compression. Lossy compression, which JPEGs use, essentially throws out some of the data while lossless preserves all the data. (PNGs use lossless, as I mentioned above.)

Therefore, the type of compression you use depends on the image type you select.

Here’s an example of compressed images:

Image Optimization Tips for Your Website - Compress Your Images

The image to the far left is 824KB, which is quite large. The middle image looks virtually identical (there’s a little graininess in the background if you look carefully) but is far smaller at 76KB. The third one is even smaller, but image quality is definitely impacted.

Aim to strike the right balance between size and quality.

When deciding how much to compress your images, think about your user. In most cases, they are unlikely to care whether an image on a blog post is a tiny bit less crisp. However, if you are sending a client a new logo, that’s a different story.

The point is, use the compression type based on the file format you use and select the file format based on how the image will be used.

Now, how do you compress images? There are several tools.

I like, it’s a free Chrome extension that lets you convert file formats, crop, and resize images in just one click. Other photo compression tools include Photoshop and PicResize.


3. Add Description Alt Text

Alt text (aka, alternative text) is a written description of an image that describes what it is and what purpose it serves. Screen readers use this data to describe images to their users, and Google uses it to determine whether an image is relevant to a search query.

If you use WordPress, adding alt text is very simple. Just highlight the block with an image and add the alt text to the provided box, like this:

image optimization guide alt text in wordpress example

In Google Docs, right-click on images, then click Alt text, and a box will appear that allows you to add the alt text.

What do you write as your alt text? While it’s up to you, here’s the formula I use:

“Main keyword – description of image”

For the image above from WordPress, I used “image optimization guide alt text in the WordPress example.” This format makes sure screen readers know what the image is and tells Google the image is relevant for image optimization search queries.

Pro tip—if you want to see how your competitors use alt tags, navigate to their site, right-click and select “Inspect.” You’ll see the alt tags in the code of their site.


4. Write High-Quality Image Names and Descriptions

Image title provides users (and search engines) with a little more context about your images. While they don’t impact ranking directly (according to Google’s John Mu), they do provide a bit more context, and they show up in your site code.

Image Tells

I recommend using a short phrase that describes the image, along with the key term the post targets—similar to your alt text.

This can also make your images easier to find in Google image search since Google generates a title and snippet for images. If you include a title, they’ll take that into consideration.


5. Ensure Images Are Mobile-Friendly

If you’ve used the correct file type and compressed your images, they should be pretty mobile-friendly. However, sometimes things don’t always display the way we expect.

More than half of all internet traffic comes from a mobile device, so you want to ensure images don’t mess up the mobile experience.

Mobile-friendliness Testing

For that reason, I recommend viewing your site from several different mobile devices to ensure images look their best. Remember, tablets, iPhones, and Android devices may all display your images a little differently.

I also recommend using Google’s mobile-friendly test to make sure your images aren’t slowing down site speed on mobile.


6. Use Schema Markup

Schema markup, also called structured data, is a type of code that helps search engines better understand your data.

Imagine you want to collect recipes to make a book of family recipes. Rather than having everyone send in their favorite recipe—which might use different measurements, different title formats, etc.—you send out a form and ask your family to input their recipe.

Now, all the recipes are in the same format and you can easily view the ingredients, measurements, and cooking steps.

Essentially, that’s what schema makeup does. It formats your data so Google can understand if it’s a list, a recipe, an image, and so forth. Here’s what it looks like:

Image Optimization Tips for Your Website - Use Schema Markup lists three types of image schemas, including:

layoutImage (pending implementation)logophoto

This is a more technical change, so don’t stress if this feels like too much. lists the coding you can use to add structured data to images here.

If you need more help, feel free to reach out to my team; we can help you get this set up.


7. Optimize Image File Names

According to Google, it uses the URL path and the file name to understand your images better. This means you should organize your image URLs logically and include key terms in the file name.

This can help you stay organized and help Google understand your images: a double win.

File names don’t have to be complicated. I usually use the alt text as the file name, which makes it easier to upload posts to WordPress.

I recommend using the keyword in the file name and describing the image.


Frequently Asked Questions About Image Optimization

What does image optimization mean?

Image optimization means making sure both Google and users can easily understand and view the images on a website. Examples include compressing images so they load faster and adding alt text so Google can better understand what the image is about.

Why is image optimization important?

While image optimization isn’t the most important SEO tactic out there, it can help you stand out in the competitive online world. You’ll still need high-quality content and to follow other SEO best practices, but image optimization is another way to increase your Google ranking.

What is the best image format for SEO?

There’s no specific format that is better for SEO. In general, you want images as small as possible while preserving as much data as possible. I recommend PNG if it doesn’t slow your site down too much.

How does image SEO work?

Image SEO works by making your images easier for Google to understand and making them as useful as possible to your site visitors. For example, adding alt text helps Google understand what your image is about and makes it easier for screen reader users to navigate your site.


Conclusion: Image Optimization

Google gives us a lot of information about how to optimize our sites and our images. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the small details.

The tips above will help you make the most of your images; however, I recommend focusing on making sure your images bring value to users. Don’t cram images in just to meet a quota, and don’t add images that don’t make sense for your content.

Have you optimized images on your website? How did it impact your traffic?


The Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website Performance

SEO is one of the most-used (and most important) website optimization strategies. However, great content, backlinks, and meta descriptions won’t help much if you don’t optimize your website performance.

If visitors land on your site and find it takes too long to load, or images don’t display correctly, they’re likely to choose a competitor.

The Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website Performance

That’s why improving your website performance is crucial.

What does optimizing your site look like and how do you go about it?

Here’s a step-by-step guide to getting you started.


What Is Website Performance?

In digital marketing, website performance generally refers to how fast a web page loads and displays content. It’s all part of visitors’ experience and it’s key to online success.

Website performance can also be used more generally, to refer to the overall impact a website has on a business. However, when digital marketers talk about website performance, we’re usually talking about how fast a site loads.

Graphic for How to Increase Website Speed

Website performance can be measured by the number of server errors and the size of downloaded web pages. It might also be called page load time.

Website performance and page speed are imperative for any online business. A slow website can lead to:

  • shopping cart abandonment
  • lost conversions
  • dissatisfied customers
  • damage to your brand’s reputation
  • lower ranking in the SERPs

No one wants any of that for their business.

Just how long does the average customer wait for a page to load? Not long.

Most sources say a website should load within two seconds. Anything longer and you risk losing not just traffic but customers.

Before you get started, it’s probably a good idea to know where you’re starting from. Google has a tool to help you out, while Uptrends also has a free speed test.

What Is Website Performance - Google Site Speed Test

These are easy to use and provide a list of steps you can take to improve your website performance. But why should you care?


Why Is Website Performance Important?

Page speed insights for How to Increase Website Speed

I’ve touched on the importance of website performance in the intro, but let’s delve further. A fast responding site has many advantages, such as:

  • Better user experience: Your website needs to be fast if you don’t want frustrated customers to leave.
  • Higher rankings: Google PageSpeed Index rewards faster websites by ranking them higher in search results.
  • Customer loyalty: The easier it is for customers to buy, the more likely they are to stay loyal.
  • Improved conversion rates: Website performance can impact conversion rates because slower load times result in higher abandonment rates.
  • Better mobile traffic: Your mobile visitor wants rapid results. If the mobile website performance is poor, there’s a good chance you won’t see them again.


What Affects Website Performance and How to Improve It

Several factors can affect website performance. For example, image sizes and page weight can impact speed.

Then there are some of the less obvious issues, like geographical areas.

Some of these problems might sound like huge issues, but they’re not. Most have easy fixes and I’ll walk you through the steps.

1. How Image Sizes Affect Website Performance

Image Sizes

Images are one of the most important factors for website performance.

The reason is pretty simple: the larger your images are, the heavier your page weight is, and the longer your site takes to load.

When you optimize your website images, significant areas of your site’s performance like loading times and user experience can improve, too.

As for optimal image sizes, this varies, from picture to picture. For some guidance, try this website image size cheat sheet from Strikingly.

Here are image guidelines to help improve your website performance.

  • Crop images so they don’t exceed the boundaries of the screen. Use images sparingly. The fewer images on a page, the quicker it loads.
  • Download a page ruler to get precise dimensions.
  • Use image compressions tools and plugins.

However, don’t just focus on image size, look at areas like:

  • formatting
  • resolution
  • dimension quality

It sounds like a lot to consider, but it just means minimizing pictures while ensuring image size doesn’t negatively affect UI.


2. How Website Performance Is Affected by the Web Page Weight/Size

Page weight refers to page size. This covers aspects like style sheets, documents, images.

Page weight is vital for website performance because it can affect how quickly web pages load on a user’s screen. The more content included on a page, the larger it is in terms of bytes.

Stats show page weight is increasing, which can make it hard to have a fast-loading website.

What Affects Website Performance and How to Improve It - Page Weight Distribution

If you’re wondering what the ideal page size is, website performance expert, Tammy Everts, suggests 1MB.

Not sure of your page weight? Try’s page size checker.

Now it’s time to start working on reducing your page weight.

Many of the tips in this article, like optimizing images and limiting HTTP requests, will lower your page weight. To further improve website performance, you can:

  • check for any unnecessary plugins on your site
  • analyze which assets are weighing down your pages
  • use offsite video hosting
  • combine CSS and JavaScript
  • reduce the number of requests from your browser by combining multiple assets into one file


3. Reduce Redirects and HTTP Requests to Improve Website Performance

HTTP requests are a fundamental building block of the web. They allow a web browser to request information from a server and display it on a webpage.

They work like this:

When you visit a website, your browser sends an HTTP request to the site’s server, asking for data. The server sends back the information your browser needs to display the page, including HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and images.

For your page to load quickly, there should be as few HTTP requests as possible from the server to the browser.

There are several ways to reduce HTTP requests on your site, including:

Redirects are another issue that can slow website performance.

These redirects take users from one page to another. If a website has too many redirects or some of them point to pages that don’t exist, the website can rank lower and it may also be slower.

301 redirects

There are a few ways to reduce redirects on a website:


4. Overcome Geographical Location Limitations

You may not consider geographical location as an issue. However, the closer the two parties are, the faster the loading time.

What Affects Website Performance and How to Improve It - Overcome Geographical Location Limitations

While you can’t do much about the distance between visitors to your website, you may be able to speed things up by introducing a CDN.

A CDN is a geographically distributed group of servers deployed in multiple data centers, providing content for one or more websites or web applications.

Popular CDN’s include: Rackspace, Amazon CloudFront, and Microsoft Azure.

By storing your files closer to your audience, you can reduce load time.


5. Look at Your Hosting Plan

The website hosting plan you chose years ago may have been the perfect fit, but as your site gains attention and traffic increases, it might not serve you so well anymore.

The result? A lot of downtimes, a decline in website performance, and frustration for you and your visitors.

What do you do? Upgrade to a plan that suits your growing audience. If you’re using a shared hosting plan, look at some alternatives like:

  • Dedicated website servers: These provide a fast and reliable connection to the web and can be scalable to meet high traffic and bandwidth needs. They’re more expensive than shared hosting, but they offer better performance for your site. This is because you get an entire server of resources dedicated to one website.
  • VPS Hosting: In a nutshell, a VPS hosting solution is an affordable and scalable way to host a website. It’s a practical way for small businesses or startups with the flexibility of scaling with them as you grow.
  • Serverless websites: Or a static website. These reduce load times and increase security. There are some drawbacks, so make sure to research this option before diving in.


6. Use Browser Caching

The browser cache is a temporary storage area that allows the browser to reuse content files, such as images and scripts, to reduce network traffic.

Using browser cache has a huge impact on website performance because it can save time and bandwidth, enhance the user experience, and increase loading times.

You can use some plugins to create a cache using WordPress. For non-WordPress users, here’s Google’s tutorial.


7. Render Blocking Your CSS and JavaScript.

Render blocking causes a significant slowdown in page loading time.

This is because the browser has to wait for the page to finish rendering before downloading and executing any scripts included on the page, such as JavaScript and CSS files.

Naturally, the more render-blocking elements a webpage has, the longer it takes for a web browser to load.

Don’t panic. It’s not nearly as complicated as it sounds.

You can find some easy fixes for WordPress render-blocking and Google also has some advice.


0. Other Steps to Improve Website Performance

The above sections cover the main issues that impact website performance, but there are other areas to consider, such as:

  • cleaning up unclean code
  • reducing excessive Flash content
  • minifying your HTML
  • choosing mobile-friendly, fast-loading themes
  • using Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) to reduce bounce rates and increase page ranking
  • fixing broken links
  • compressing your files with gzip


Frequently Asked Questions About Website Performance

How do you measure the performance of a website?

There are plenty of free tools to measure your page loading times, such as Google’s PageSpeed Insights. However, if you want to measure overall performance, pay attention to KPIs like customer satisfaction and conversion rates.

What tools do you need to measure website performance?

Google Analytics provides a set of tools to monitor website performance, including Site Speed, Pages per visit, Bounce Rate, and Conversion Rate.

Pingdom and GTmetrix measure your site speed, and Uptrends provides a comprehensive set of testing tools and a free speed test.

How long does it take to analyze website performance?

You can complete loading time tests in seconds, and you should analyze them at regular periods throughout the year. In addition to speed, other areas of website performance to measure are your content, on-site behavior, and user acquisition metrics.

What is a good website performance?

The best-performing sites load within two seconds, and that’s what you should aim for.


Conclusion: Website Performance

There is more to a website than SEO, great content, and good-looking images. Whether you’re an ecommerce site, blog, or website owner, website performance is crucial to online success.

Great website performance makes it easier to rank and helps keep traffic on your website.

It also enhances SEO, helping to keep your website at the top of rankings and potentially increasing your overall conversions.

Enhancing your website performance might sound complex, but it’s pretty simple. Start by reducing your image sizes, limiting page weight, and upgrading your web host package.

Do you have tips to improve website performance? Share them below.


The Best Marketing Schools and Degree Programs

Are marketing degrees worth it?

There’s not a definitive answer for everyone, as too many factors go into deciding which marketing career path you want to take, which marketing programs interest you the most, and which school experience is the best for you.

However, if this field entices you and you want to learn all you can, many opportunities exist to help you learn about the ins and outs of this industry—and how to pave a career path ahead.

The Best Marketing Schools and Degree Programs


Why Should You Get a Marketing Degree?

Marketing is an exciting field. As digital and technological advances evolve consumer behavior, the opportunities continue to grow.

Now is a great time to dive in, and the data backs this up. For instance, the Bureau of Labor predicts that management jobs in marketing and advertising will rise in the coming decade. Those who are interested in that management career path may want to have a degree behind them as they get started and as they grow into management.

Technology growth is a big driver for the rise of marketing jobs. Market analysts in particular are expected to grow in demand. Having a degree in this field, with technical education and experience on the numbers side of things, could pave the way for a career in marketing research and analysis.

Marketing is one of those fields that combines a wide range of pursuits, bringing together creative, right-brained people with analytical, left-brained people. It can make for a personally fulfilling and interesting job.


What Courses Are Taught in Marketing School?

Different marketing degrees may have slightly different focuses and opportunities for students, depending on the school and the professors involved. However, you can expect the same common courses in nearly all marketing schools.

These cover a lot of the basic marketing principles and help you build a foundation of knowledge.


Introduction or Overview of Marketing

This is often listed as a 101 or entry-level class and acts as a summary of the field. This is a great class to check out if you’re still considering a marketing major. It also serves as an introductory class to those on the marketing degree track.



Diving into some of the tactics and history of campaigns, this is a common course for marketing degrees. You’ll look at what works, what doesn’t, and why, as well as channels for advertising, such as print and digital.


Public Relations

Although often a separate degree or area of concentration, public relations is sometimes a course within the marketing degree track because the two are interrelated. You will learn more about how brands are perceived by people and how to keep up that reputation.


Quantitative Data and Research

A big part of marketing is understanding the data you can gather from your target market and the competition.

google analytics

Being able to collect and translate this data into meaningful information is critical to developing campaigns. In courses like this, you’ll learn how to understand the data you can gain and how to use it.


Consumer Behavior

In addition to the business and data side of things, a consumer behavior course highlights how to reach a target audience and, ultimately, to drive sales.

how to find your target audience

It also can explain how people respond, how and why they buy, and more. These kinds of courses empower you with that end-user information.



You need to know how to communicate well to be a good marketer. Learning about the science behind communications, as well as channels and new platforms, is an important component in a marketing degree.


Economics Principles

When it comes to marketing, having a bigger-picture view can help you position your products or services with foresight. These courses can show you how the economy works like supply and demand basics, and bigger views such as financial markets and what they mean for consumers.



Many marketing degrees provide a branding course that provides a look into the components that make up a brand. When brands become household names, we don’t think about all the details that go into them there. Branding courses can break it down and help you see how powerful a brand can be.

How Corporate Branding Translates Into Actual Sales

In addition, you may also take classes that dig into specific areas of marketing, especially related to tactics, campaigns, or modern channels. These might include retail principles, digital marketing, graphic design, copywriting and content marketing, social media, event promotions, and more.


7 Best Marketing Schools and Degree Programs

Choosing the best school to attend and a marketing degree to pursue involves a lot of interwoven decisions.

In addition to the information provided here, you’ll be considering the cost of living, location and convenience, and a myriad of other personal reasons. We could never get into all the details of every school, but below we’ll provide a look at some well-known colleges and their programs.

Also note, we are discussing traditional degree tracks, with a bachelor’s degree emphasis. There are also many non-traditional or certification tracks, as well as graduate-level programs.


1. University of Pennsylvania

Best Marketing Schools and Degree Programs - University of Pennsylvania

Under the umbrella of the famed Wharton School, the University of Pennsylvania’s Marketing bachelor’s degree offers a track that is steeped in history and known for research and forward-thinking tactics.

They boast of having more professors who are cited or published in the field of marketing than any other school. Located in Philadelphia, this school focuses on being cutting-edge and pushing innovation. They talk of being involved in marketing before it existed formally as a field and driving the research and analytics that have brought us to where we are today.

In addition to the standard marketing track, students are also welcomed to study dual concentrations in marketing and communications or marketing and operations.


2. University of Notre Dame

Best Marketing Schools and Degree Programs - University of Notre Dame

The University of Notre Dame offers a marketing major under its Mendoza College of Business, which focuses on a framework they call “5Cs/STP/4Ps.”

To sum these up, the five Cs are “Company, Collaborators, Customers, Competitors, and Climate,” which help to guide and frame strategic decisions in marketing. The STP refers to the “Segment, Target, and Position” of a product or service and can help to drive campaigns. Lastly, the four Ps are “Product, Placement, Price, and Promotion.”

These fundamentals of marketing are seen as the starting point for all the modern and innovative conversations that happen at Notre Dame. In addition, they explain that they place a great emphasis on ethics in the marketing program.


3. University of Florida

Best Marketing Schools and Degree Programs - University of Florida

As you are exploring marketing degrees, the University of Florida Heavener School of Business may be a place to look. Located in Gainesville, Florida in the northern part of the state, the University of Florida offers a Business Administration major with an emphasis in marketing.

Students who choose this path enjoy the benefits of working with and learning from faculty renowned in the marketing field. They have a strong focus on research and the science behind marketing, including psychology and data, as well as the practical use of that information. They also are the home of the David F. Miller Retail Center, which is known for its work in the science and research behind successful retailing.


4. Missouri State University

Missouri State University offers a number of unique opportunities for those interested in marketing degrees. For their undergraduate marketing major, they provide four different track options, depending on your unique interests. These include Advertising and Promotion, Marketing Management, Marketing Research, and Professional Sales.

In addition to providing these specialization options, they also offer some unique opportunities. For instance, the Marketing Management track is available fully online, fully in-person, or a hybrid of both. They also offer an undergraduate-level certification in relationship selling and graduate certifications in marketing and marketing analytics.


5. New York University

Best Marketing Schools and Degree Programs - New York University

New York University, located in New York City, provides a bachelor’s degree track with a marketing concentration. They empower their students to be competitive in marketing and to build relationships with target markets. They do so through courses that include consumer behavior and research for customer insights.

Additional electives range from social media to sports marketing, design to film, business on Broadway to luxury marketing, and more. As such, you may want to consider this path if you have an interest in marketing in these areas. They also encourage those interested in marketing analytics and data, in particular, to pursue a dual major with statistics.


6. Washington University in St. Louis

Washington University in St. Louis offers a marketing undergraduate major, which falls under their bachelor of science in business administration major.

Designed to help students create a path reflective of their interests, this major offers core classes such as marketing research but also provides a number of electives that allow a student to customize.

These include sports, luxury, and international marketing, including from London and Sydney.

Students are encouraged to consider further customization by double majoring in a correlated field such as finance. The school also offers a number of minors such as business of sports, business of entertainment, business of social impact, and international business.


7. University of Texas at Austin

Two students talking on a wide, busy walkway

At the University of Texas at Austin McCombs School of Business, students can pursue a bachelor of arts degree in marketing. According to their website, the program was ranked third in the nation by U.S. News & World Report magazine.

It has become a renowned program that focuses on a multidisciplinary overview of the field, including looking at the foundational aspects that have built the marketing field, as well as the latest findings and research.

In their program, they also encourage students to get hands-on, real-world experience through internships, study abroad programs, and other opportunities in the business world.


Frequently Asked Questions About Marketing Schools

Are marketing degrees worth it? 

The field of marketing is projected to grow in the coming years, especially in data analysis and research. A degree with technical experience could be a differentiator as you pursue a career in marketing.

What do marketing schools teach? 

Courses in a marketing degree track cover everything from economics and statics to branding and communication. They cover a range of topics to help marketers position and promote products and services.

Where can I get a marketing degree?

Many schools offer marketing degrees, including the University of Pennsylvania, University of Notre Dame, University of Florida, Missouri State University, New York University, Washington University in St. Louis, and the University of Texas in Austin.

Where can I study marketing online?

Missouri State University offers an online or hybrid program for its marketing management undergraduate degree.


Conclusion: Best Marketing Schools

The field of marketing is an exciting one, with lots of potential growth in the future. Digital marketing continues to evolve as new channels emerge.

What Is Digital Marketing? - featured image

In addition, everything from artificial intelligence to augmented reality is changing the way we do business. Now more than ever we need marketers who can keep up with the data and understand consumer behavior.

Marketing degrees at business schools around the U.S. are pushing to keep up with this demand, with courses that are relevant and on the cutting edge. Choose the one with an emphasis that aligns with your own goals and values and suits your needs.

Are you thinking of getting a marketing degree? What topics are you most interested in learning?


Account-Based Marketing: Past, Present, and Future

The average email click-through rate is 2.6 percent. The rate of return on direct mail is around 1 percent. A good social media campaign will convert at less than 1 percent.

Why are these numbers so low? Because many new marketing campaigns don’t have the right customer research, ideal client avatars, personalization, or segmentation. They dangle a worm out there to see if anyone bites.

Account-Based Marketing: Past, Present, and Future

These factors are important, and it is why account-based marketing is a great opportunity. It is a great way to find the ideal client who you will pay you month after month.

That’s the type of client you want, and that’s what we’re focusing on in this guide.


What Is Account-Based Marketing?

Account-based marketing is a B2B marketing strategy where the sales and marketing teams work together to find the most qualified accounts to become customers.

You’re flipping the traditional sales funnel upside down.


I love the example of fishing with nets versus fishing with spears.

When you fish with nets, you throw out a generalized marketing campaign to fit the needs of your customer persona, but you’re not entirely sure what will stick.

When you fish with spears, you pinpoint the clients you want with the help of your sales team. Working together will help the marketing team identify ideal clients and then put together a campaign that speaks directly to that audience.


Examples of Account-Based Marketing

Account-based marketing works by creating campaigns for highly specific audiences. By going in with a certain target group in mind, you are able to customize campaigns like you never could before.

Here are some real-life examples of account-based marketing.



Let’s say you’re targeting an outdoor retailer that creates custom kayaks for professional fishermen. That’s a pretty specific audience, right?

webinar conversions

You can create a webinar dedicated to marketing for custom kayak companies.



Live Events

Even better than a webinar is a live event in-person.

Live Podcast

Work with the sales team to identify key prospects as you plan this event. You can also create personalized upsells such as VIP passes, VIP rooms, or merchandise for the people you want to close.



Google Ads, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram are all ways to reach high ticket clients through account-based marketing. Once you’ve identified your targets, you can create specific campaigns for those few prospects.

instagram marketing tips

Remember the fishing with spears versus fishing with nets analogy? We’re no longer just throwing a net out to see if we catch anything. We know what we want to catch, where it is, and how to get it. We just have to do it.


Why and When You Should Use Account-Based Marketing


We tend to open the funnel with a broad-based marketing approach to “play the field” and see what’s out there. Eventually, we need to get away from that and narrow down to focus on the clients who will pay us what we’re worth and stick with us.

I like to call this the “ideal client.” Once you know who these clients are, account-based marketing helps you reach them.

Here are some ideal situations where you should use account-based marketing:


To Bring Marketing and Sales Together

One of the biggest issues many companies face is not having their sales and marketing team on the same page.

How Sales & Marketing Can Work Together to Maximize Growth (Updated Sep 2021)

Account-based marketing gives these two departments a chance to work together, understand a common goal, and help each other out.


To Increase Engagement

One indicator you’re targeting the wrong audience is if they’re not engaging. This can be a sign of fatigue with your marketing campaigns as well.

engaging content

How often have you seen ads over and over to the point where you don’t notice them anymore?

When this happens, it’s time to change things up and switch to a personalized strategy that will speak to one specific audience.


To Maximize ROI

The goal of both marketing sales is to bring as many people through the funnel as possible. That is a key indicator for long-term success.

Even better is bringing qualified people through the funnel versus bringing everyone.

If we focus on ROI, we only bring the most qualified accounts through the funnel. This will save you money, time, and resources.


Benefits of Account-Based Marketing

Now let’s talk about the direct benefits of an account-based marketing strategy versus something broader.

Shorter Sales Cycle

Shortening the sales cycle can save you so much time and money. This is one reason why an account-based marketing approach maximizes the ROI.

You are able to connect directly with key decision-makers early instead of using resources to engage with employees who may not have that authority. Because you are targeting decision-makers directly, you know they can pay, and you can serve them.


Personalization Saves Time and Money

How often does your sales team spend their time speaking with prospects who barely understand what your business does? That’s a sign of broad marketing.

With account-based marketing, you attract prospects who are already warmed up, familiar with your company, and ready to make a decision. This type of personalized marketing saves time and money in the long run.


Easier to Measure ROI

When we narrow down the funnel, we focus on fewer prospects. This makes it easier to figure out the ROI and deliver better results.

For instance, if we reach 100 ideal clients and convert 10 of them, we know our account-based marketing conversion rate is 10 percent.

This sure beats reaching out to the entire east coast with a marketing campaign and converting 10 people—then having four of them duck out after their first month.

Instead, you’re nurturing long-term, well-qualified prospects that will stick with you.


How to Plan and Begin Account-Based Marketing

Now that you have an overview of account-based marketing, let’s put it into practice with some actionable steps you can take.

1. Zero in on Your Targets


Who is your ideal client?

Work with the sales team to figure out some warm prospects. What characteristics describe them? What type of revenue do they have? What platforms do they live on?

Use all of this information to put together a personalized marketing campaign.


2. Research Them

Do plenty of research. Figure out what makes prospects tick and put together creative ideas that will make the prospect feel like the marketing campaign was made just for them—because it was.


3. Choose Your Avenue

Where are you going to market to this audience? What are you going to use to do it?

Do they have a younger demographic on platforms like Instagram and TikTok? Are they older executives that prefer direct mail or live events?

These are some key questions you should be asking before starting your campaign, especially if you expect to reach them and maximize your ROI.


4. Run Your Campaigns and Measure Frequently

One thing marketers are advised to do when running PPC, social media ads, or any other type of campaign is build up enough data before making a conclusion. With account-based marketing, things are a little bit different.

You can spill your entire ad budget pretty quickly when you have a narrow audience. You want to check on these campaigns frequently to see if your approach is hitting or not. If you don’t see the signs of success early, it is a good idea to adjust accordingly.


Tips for Implementing Account-Based Marketing

Here are some higher-level tips to make the most of your account-based marketing campaigns.

1. Plan Out Every Detail

You’re targeting a specific account, so the marketing campaigns need to be highly targeted. Information like competitors, customer relationships, buying points, selling points, and best-selling products/services are all important.


2. Align With the Sales Team

Make sure everyone is on board, from the president of marketing to the new trainee in sales. There should be no miscommunication on either side since everyone has the same goal of securing these high-ticket clients.


3. Build a Dedicated Account-Based Team

You should have a team of dedicated account managers working with these prospects before they become clients. Their focus should be on building relationships and understanding the needs of each account to streamline communications and limit the number of people you need to speak with before a close can happen.


4. Have a Small Target

Don’t spread yourself out too much. By limiting your focus to two or three high-value accounts, you are able to make sure that your campaigns speak directly to their specific needs and pain points.

If you go too broad too early, you risk the chance of your campaign alienating some or all of your target accounts.


5. Work With Decision Makers Only

You’re pouring a lot of resources into these two or three accounts, so you need to make sure you’re not wasting time. The key is to only deal with decision-makers in the company. If you can’t target specific decision-makers, they’re not a high-value target.


6. Target Warm Prospects Only

In addition to reaching decision-makers, work with your sales team to find the warmest targets. These people know who you are and have shown interest in the past but never converted.


7. Don’t Be Afraid to Adjust

Be sure to measure your results, change things as needed, and work with everyone involved to figure out what you can do differently.


Account-Based Marketing Frequently Asked Questions

What is an account-based marketing platform?

An account-based marketing platform is a form of technology that allows you to scale your marketing campaigns. These platforms allow you to run larger campaigns at narrower audiences.

How much does it cost to set up an account-based marketing plan?

It depends entirely on how much you do yourself and what you outsource. We can help you set up your account-based marketing to get you started on the right foot.

Why is account-based marketing important?

Account-based marketing is important because it caters to a specific audience which helps you maximize your ROI and bring in more high-ticket clients. This increases client retention over time and generally improves your company’s ROI.

How is ABM used?

Account-based marketing is used in various ways, but one of the most popular is to align marketing and sales teams. When these two departments work in perfect harmony, it helps bring in more high-value clients and shortens the sales process from beginning to end.


Conclusion: Account-Based Marketing

Account-based marketing is a smart choice for companies of sizes, allowing you to create deeper relationships with clients who will be more meaningful to your bottom line.

Taking on this strategy will bring in the exact type of clients you need to keep retention rates up and build a strong base. Work with your sales to identify the right accounts, create your ideal buyer persona, and pick an avenue to reach that audience.

Have you ever implemented a successful account-based marketing campaign?


A Marketer’s Guide to the Metaverse

Technology is ever-changing and, because of that, so is marketing. The evolution of the metaverse is just one recent development in the world of technology, but one that will have a huge impact on the human experience as we know it.

While digital marketing has seen many advances over the last few decades, the metaverse is one that has stumped many companies and marketers. How can they use the metaverse to their advantage so they aren’t stuck in the dark ages?

A Marketer's Guide to the Metaverse

In this post, I’ll introduce the metaverse. This will include a breakdown of what it means and a look at both its current and future states. I’ll then introduce the various ways marketers can expect to use the metaverse in the years to come, as well as how they can get their foot in the door.


What Is the Metaverse?

The metaverse as envisioned by Matthew Ball, a venture capitalist and writer, and later on Zuckerburg, is “an expansive network of persistent, real-time rendered 3D worlds and simulations.”

Put more simply, the metaverse is a currently hypothetical version of the internet that supports online 3-D virtual environments. This is done through personal computing (a current example is an online game Second Life), virtual reality headsets, and augmented reality headsets.

Second Life for Metaverse

That’s not to say that elements of the metaverse don’t exist currently. There are games like Roblox and Fortnite that form the basis for what many consider to be the future of the metaverse. More specifically, virtual avatars who can interact with their virtual environment, and other players. They can also purchase merchandise in-game, such as clothing and decorative accessories, to personalize the experience.


Metaverse and NFT: How Are They Related?

An NFT, or non-fungible token, is anything digital that cannot be replaced as it doesn’t have a tangible value. The most common forms of NFT today are digital art like animations. However, within the metaverse, an NFT can become so much more.

According to Morgan Stanley, the multinational investment bank, NFTs have the potential to become a $56 billion market by 2030. How? All thanks to the demand the metaverse will create.

With the increase in virtual avatars, the demand for virtual fashion will skyrocket. The need to personalize oneself within the digital space is undeniable and fashion is one of the easiest ways to do so. Just look at the success of markets found on Fortnite and Roblox, virtual games with an avatar.


How Will the Metaverse Impact Marketing?

If you haven’t considered how the metaverse will impact marketing, then you’re already behind the curve. The metaverse isn’t an “if” but a “when.” That is, it’s an inevitability. The metaverse will impact marketing in many ways, some of which you can begin to implement now.

Virtual Reality

Virtual reality isn’t new. In fact, it’s been around in one variation or another for decades. Of course, it’s improved leaps in bounds in recent years, and it will continue to do so in the years to come.

From product development to the sale of existing products or services, virtual reality enables you to bring your customers into the fold. They can play an active role in all stages of the process. Who says “no” to free product research?

Virtual Reality

Even more, many customers will seek out such opportunities as opposed to hiding from them like they do with online advertisements. The generations coming of age now and in the next 15 years, largely Generations Z and Alpha will feel more at home within these environments than any other generation before them.

Augmented Reality

Unlike virtual reality which takes over your vision, augmented reality just adds elements to it. Think of “smart glasses” or the popular mobile game Pokemon Go. These devices take note of your surrounding environment and then enhance it by adding images, animations, or data over the top of it.

Where does marketing come in? From trying on a pair of glasses or a dress to test driving a new car, augmented reality brings the shopping experience to another level. In an augmented environment, your customers can interact with your products without leaving their homes.

Augmented Reality

Even in-store experiences will benefit from the metaverse, however. Since augmented reality is an overlay on the real-life environment, you can use it in stores to share in-depth information, display additional features and use cases, etc. Think of it as a parallel marketing experience.

Branding in The Metaverse

As the metaverse grows, so too will branding and advertising opportunities. Including virtual message boards, billboards, merchandise, and even the virtual clothing avatars wear.

NFTs will play a big role, too. With the ability to personalize avatars and spaces like “homes” and storefronts, you can create branded virtual content for your customers. This enables you to break into merchandising spaces you don’t currently work in, such as virtual apparel and digital art.

According to the Chief Metaverse Officer of Futures Intelligence Group, Cathy Hackl, it’s not so easy as going “direct-to-avatar.” That is, breaking onto the scene isn’t so simple as creating a virtual version of your merchandise.

This is especially true for brands that don’t sell apparel, art, or other things easy to digitize. Brands have done it, though. Just look at Chipotle and even Gucci.

Branding in the Metaverse - Gucci Garden on Roblox for Metaverse


Virtual Popups

Popup shops are a common occurrence for businesses of all sizes. Whether it’s products or services you’re selling, a virtual popup gives you the opportunity to share your brand on a larger scale.

Similar to an in-person popup, a virtual popup is a chance to network, advertise, and sell your products and services.


Whereas popups in a physical location may limit attendance (both due to space and travel required), a virtual popup helps you to reach a larger audience.

The virtual location will not only benefit attendance numbers, but it will also have less impact on the bottom line. With a decreased need for employee travel and lodgings, and no need to rent out physical space, you can cut costs and perhaps even decrease the end price for users.

Virtual Training or Classes

With so many live streaming and pre-recorded video platforms, virtual training and classes are already a big part of the corporate world.

vimeo channel - example CMI

While many virtual pieces of training and classes will likely continue in their current form, the metaverse creates a space for them to expand.

Bringing real-world classes to virtual headsets worldwide, the growth opportunities are endless. Just imagine a virtual reality training course on your product or a use case walkthrough for your services. You can even use it for product demonstrations with potential customers or troubleshooting sessions with your current clientele.

Beyond marketing efforts, you can even use virtual classes for in-house onboarding and training. Emergency preparedness, diversity and inclusion, new employee orientation, and more.

Metaverse Events

In this post-COVID world, it’s easy to imagine the continued need for virtual meeting spaces. From family get-togethers to concerts to non-profit galas, the metaverse has no limits on who you can meet up with and when.

A recent example of such an event was the Lil Nas X concert that took place within the virtual world of Roblox.

Metaverse Events - Lil Nas X Roblox Concert for Metaverse

With events like this becoming more popular, especially with Generations Z and Alpha, metaverse events won’t just be a tool you can use but a necessity. As your target audience changes, so too will your marketing efforts. This is just one example of how the metaverse will play a role.

You don’t want to wait until these types of events become popular before you hop on the bandwagon. You should consider hosting your own virtual event, whether through virtual reality or augmented reality, soon. There are even consulting agencies that can help you to host such events.


Metaverse in Marketing: Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Metaverse?

The Metaverse is a digital universe where users interact with the computer-generated reality and other users. It’s a digital life, for all intents and purposes, that includes components such as virtual reality and personal computing.

Why should marketers care about the metaverse?

As a second life for users, the metaverse provides an opportunity for marketers to reach their audiences in a new dimension. The metaverse expands the digital footprint of customers so as to provide a whole new look into their actions and behaviors.

How could businesses monetize the metaverse?

From opportunities to brand digital merchandise to offering virtual classes and popup events, businesses can monetize the metaverse in the same ways they can monetize their real-world counterparts.

What companies are in the metaverse?

While we speak of the metaverse in its future state, there are companies that contribute to its existence both now and in the future. Just a few companies currently “in” the metaverse are Facebook (Meta), Niantic, Epic Games, and Apple.

How can my company prepare for the future of marketing in the metaverse?

The metaverse, in its simplest, is a virtual community. With community is the need for connection. Companies can prepare for the future of marketing in the metaverse by taking steps towards building that connection. For now, this includes opening new commerce stores on Instagram Shop and Facebook Shop and even creating AR advertisements.


Conclusion: Metaverse for Marketers

The metaverse as imagined by the likes of Matthew Ball and Mark Zuckerberg is still years away. Digital marketers shouldn’t sit on the sidelines waiting until that time has come. Instead, they should use these next few years to prepare for opportunities to come.

There are ways that marketers can get ahead of the curve, including investing in virtual reality and augmented reality advertising. There are also e-commerce platforms, like Instagram Shop and Facebook Shop, that offer a glimpse into the future of the metaverse and what it has in store.

What step will you take to get your company started in the metaverse?


Personalized Advertising and How to Use it in Paid Search

Personalized advertising is not a new concept. In fact, it’s been around for years and has become more sophisticated as technology has evolved.

What used to be considered as spammy or intrusive marketing techniques are now commonplace with personalized advertising.

Personalized Advertising and How to Use it in Paid Search

The benefits of using personalized ads can’t be ignored either.

Personalized ads offer higher click-through rates, lower cost per acquisition (CPA), and provide a better customer experience because they will see exactly what they want to see when browsing your site or searching on Google.

Consumer Attitudes Irrelevant Website Content July 2013

If used well, personalized advertising can also help you improve your organic search results.

In this article, I’ll outline how you can start incorporating personalized advertising into your paid search strategy.



What Are the Benefits of Personalized Advertising for Paid Search?

Personalized advertising helps get your message in front of potential customers at the right time.

It can also lead to better performance in digital search by tailoring your ads to the individual searcher.

There are many benefits of using personalized advertising in paid search with some of the most important including:

  • Higher click-through rates (CTR): Personalized ads have been shown to get higher click-through rates than regular, non-personalized ads. Because they are more relevant to the individual user, they are therefore more likely to be interesting.
  • Lower cost per acquisition (CPA): Since they are more relevant, personalized ads also tend to have a lower CPA which increases the likelihood of conversions.Better ROI: All of these benefits mean you’re likely to see better ROI from your personalized advertising campaigns than from non-personalized ones.


How to Leverage Personalization in Paid Search

Personalized advertising can go a long way in paid search, but it’s important to use it in the right way.

Customer data is an integral part of personalized advertising, so start by collecting it. There are lots of ways to do this, but the most common ones involve data collection tools like Google Analytics or Bing Webmaster.

From there, use these tips to get the most out of personalized advertising in paid search.

Use AI To Streamline Your Ads

Search engines like Google offer machine learning to make it easier to create more personalized ads.

Google Ads offers a number of AI-driven tools, including the ability to auto-generate ad headlines and descriptions based on the data you’ve collected about your customers. You can also use machine learning to target similar audiences for your ads.

With AI assistance, you can help match your offer with consumer needs, helping give your business the edge over competitors.

AI can also help you find more high-performance keywords or remove low-performing ads.


Create More Targeted Ads

Personalized advertising requires an understanding of who your customers are, where they live, and what they are looking for.

Google Ads allow you to create highly targeted ads based on a variety of factors, including:

  • demographics
  • location
  • interests and habits
  • past search behavior
  • returning customers

Consider the following example. If you own a restaurant in New York City near Central Park, your ad targeting should include keywords related to your location as well as those that will appeal to local customers who are looking for a place to eat.

In this example, the ad could include language such as “located in Central Park” or “New York City restaurant near Central Park.”

The ads can get even more specific by targeting people who have recently searched for things like “dinner near me,” “walking distance from my hotel,” and “Central Park restaurants.”


​​Use Customer Match to Target Specific Customers

Once you have some customer data in hand, send that information into your Google Ad campaigns through Customer Match. This will allow you to target ads based on individual users’ search behavior.

For example, you can use Customer Match to target ads at users who have purchased something from your site in the past 30 days.

This feature is especially helpful if you want to reach out to customers who are likely ready for another purchase.

Customer Match can also help you optimize your campaigns by adjusting ad bids based on past customer activity.

For example, you can set a bid adjustment to receive more ad exposure to customers who have viewed or purchased items in specific categories.

This feature is great for targeting ads based on what you know about your customer’s interests and product preferences, helping you find potentially new leads that fit within your existing target audience.

Other Customer Match features include:

  • showing personalized ads in Gmail inbox tabs based on customer data
  • targeting ads on YouTube segments that are similar to your own
  • using personalized ads on the Google Display Network


Use Dynamic Search Ads

Dynamic Search Ads match user search terms to your ad to help fill gaps in keyword-based campaigns.

When a customer’s search is relevant to your product or service, Google will automatically show an ad for the most relevant page on your site that matches their search.

For example, this could be showing an ad for winter boots when a customer searches for “cold weather gear.”

Dynamic ads also update as you make changes to your website. All headlines and landing page content are pulled automatically from your site, ensuring you always have the most up-to-date content and CTAs to drive new customer traffic.

This feature is great for advertisers who want the ability to manage ad campaigns on a daily basis and optimize based on changing business goals and priorities.

Use Retargeting Strategies

Another great use for personalized advertising is Dynamic Remarketing. You can target ads specifically at users who have visited your website but haven’t made a purchase yet. This can be a great way to remind customers what they were interested in and nudge them towards completing a purchase.

Targeting returning customers is another great way to use personalized advertising. You can target people who have visited your website before or even those who have made a purchase from you in the past.

You can do this by including customer data in your remarketing lists. This could include things like email addresses, phone numbers, or even past purchase data.

When you target your ads to these customers, you can be sure they are more likely to convert because they have already shown an interest in your product or service.

Use Geotargeting

Geotargeting is a method of personalized advertising that allows you to target people based on their location. You can use this to target customers in a specific area, or even those who are visiting your city or town.

This is a great way to increase local sales and drive traffic to your physical store locations. It can also be used to target people who are traveling in your area.

How to Target Tourists Through Paid Ads

In addition, geotargeting can be used to target people who are near your competitor’s location.

For example, if you’re one of many pizza restaurants in a neighborhood, you can use geotargeting to target customers who frequent your competitor’s shop, and draw them to your own business.


Personalized Advertising for Paid Search: Frequently Asked Questions

Can search ads be personalized?

Yes, search ads can be personalized in a number of ways by using geotargeting, remarketing, location targeting, and Customer Match.

What is the benefit of personalized advertising?

Personalized advertising can result in increased sales and traffic to your physical store locations, as well as targeting people who are traveling in your area.

What are examples of personalized advertising in paid search?

Examples of personalized in paid search include ads that target specific locations, past customer behaviors such as abandoning a cart, or past customer interactions such as viewing a product or clicking on an ad.

How do I implement personalized advertising in paid search?

To establish the foundation for personalized ads, you must first set up goals and advanced segments within AdWords to determine which online behaviors indicate interest in your products and services.

Do personalized ads creep users out?

Personalized advertising has been shown to perform better with customers, as long as it is done correctly. The key to success with personalized ads is creating a balance between relevance and frequency, as well as being upfront about how and when data is being used.


Conclusion: Personalized Advertising for Paid Search

Personalized advertising can be a powerful tool for your paid search campaigns.

An Introduction to Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Paid Marketing

When done correctly, it can lead to improved click-through rates and conversions.

By setting up goals and advanced segments in Google Ads, you can create personalized ads that are relevant to your customers’ interests.

Just be sure to be upfront about the kinds of information you are collecting from your customers, how it’s being used, and why.

NP Digital has been helping businesses achieve their marketing and advertising goals since 2017. If you need help setting up your personalized ads or just want someone to bounce ideas off of, contact us today!

Have you found success with personalized advertising?


Facebook Lead Ads: What They Are and How to Use Them

It has 2.89 billion monthly active users, a global presence, and a massive influence on consumer buying decisions.

What am I talking about? Facebook, of course!

Given its broad audience, marketers and businesses can’t afford to ignore Facebook if they want a fresh pool of prospects to target.

However, there’s another reason why you should use Facebook: they provide many innovative tools to help anyone drive more attention to their products and services by targeting specific audiences.

One of those tools is Facebook lead ads.

Facebook Lead Ads: What They Are and How to Use Them


What Are Facebook Lead Ads?

Facebook lead ads allow marketers to generate leads on Facebook among users who might be looking to buy your product or services.

Rather than the traditional landing page, these ads keep users on social media while the prospect fills out a simple lead form with basic details such as their name, email address, and other contact information.

When a prospect completes an “Instant Form”, they get added to the company’s email list where they receive updates and offers (if you have an active mailing list).

Alternatively, you can customize Facebook Instant Forms—making it easier to target your audience (and filter out non-relevant customers).

With Facebook lead ads, you can choose from several campaign types, including:

  • demos
  • downloads, like PDFs
  • discounts
  • event advertising

Facebook users will then see lead ads in different site areas, including news feeds, Messenger, and even articles.



How Facebook Lead Ads Work

Facebook lead ads work in much the same way as other advertising. You can create your adverts by going to Facebook’s Ads Manager.

Once there, you establish your budget while adding your descriptions, images/videos, and other design elements for a successful ad. You can also customize your ad by using specified interests or demographics to target your ideal audience.

Ads then get shown in users’ feeds, where they can respond to your offer, helping your ability to generate more leads.

From a user’s perspective, Facebook Lead Ads don’t look different from other link ads. Once clicked, they take the Facebook user to a form rather than a website, like in the example below.


When creating the Facebook lead ad form, you get to decide what information you’d like to ask for. Aside from the pre-filled data, you can also select from a list of custom questions types such as:

  • multiple choice
  • short answer
  • store locator
  • conditional
  • appointment request


Benefits of Facebook Lead Ads

The most obvious benefit of Facebook lead ads is that they give prospects an easy way to provide their information—especially if you choose the pre-fill option—allowing you to collect leads in a more efficient and straightforward way.

As for marketer and small business owner benefits, you can customize questions for your forms, have a better chance at increasing conversions, and access a mix of new lead generation campaigns.

Six Facebook Lead Generation Tips to Generate More Business

Some other significant benefits of Facebook lead ads are:

  • targeted audience segmentation
  • easy data collection
  • mobile responsiveness
  • a better understanding of your customers

As you can see, you’ve got plenty of reasons to explore these ads and get to know how they may work for you in your business.


Why Should Marketers and Small Businesses Use Facebook Lead Ads?

The reality is marketers and small business owners are busy and can’t be everywhere at once, even if you might want to be.

facebook-lead-generation1 - ad costs

That means you need to focus your marketing efforts on maximizing success.

That’s why it makes sense to use tools like form-driven ads to capture leads efficiently and dynamically (without too much effort and time commitment on your part).

You can use Facebook lead ads in any number of ways, including:

  • finding prospects for your products/services
  • gathering subscriber details for newsletters
  • gaining insights into consumers behaviors
  • encouraging people to sign up for courses and events


Facebook Lead Ads Best Practices

There are plenty of ways to make the most of your Facebook lead ads. Let’s start with the basics.

A few best practices include:

  • ensure your ads are in line with your business goals
  • make sure your ad messaging is consistent with your brand
  • create a clear and effective call to action (CTA)
  • use CTAs that speak to your specific audience
  • keep the ads simple
  • spell out the benefits

facebook-lead-generation2 - lead ads

Facebook has a heap of helpful suggestions too. These include:

  • Decide on the right budget and use ad scheduling.
  • Create lookalike audiences to help find your ideal customers.
  • Reach previous prospects with the Engagement Custom Audience feature.
  • Run ads on both Facebook and Instagram.
  • Add an engaging image/video.

Just a quick note: it’s definitely worth reading up on Facebook-published articles for a wealth of tips on increasing conversions from Instant Forms.

Before moving on, here are a few more things to consider:

  • Find the right leads: By pairing Facebook lead ads with the platform’s audience selection and optimization tools, you can reach the right audience at the right time every time.
  • Ask the right questions: Only you know what information you’re looking for from your audience. Ask the most important questions up top to ensure that you get the information you’re angling for.
  • Integrate your CRM: Rather than losing your leads, you can integrate Facebook lead ads directly with your CRM, allowing your system to immediately reach out to interested parties.

Now you know what makes a great ad, let us look at some examples.


Examples of Great Facebook Lead Ads

Many brands in different niches are using Facebook lead ads to their advantage and, as you can see from the following examples, there’s a ton you can learn from them.

Let’s start with the Wealth Factory.

The Wealth Factory

Let’s face it. If someone is going to click on a link, they want to know what’s in it for them. When the benefits are clear, and they can see what they gain from clicking through, they are more likely to take that extra step.


That’s what The Wealth Factory does so well with its Facebook lead ads. The free PDF details the IRS’s tax benefits and lists 32 jobs that your child can do to help you in your business.

As you can see from the ad, the benefits include a sizable tax-free income for your child and a tax deduction for you as a business owner.

To find out more, Facebook users complete the super-short form and click send. It doesn’t get much easier than that.

This is an approach you can adapt for your campaigns.

Make the benefits clear and bullet point them, so people see at a glance what they’re set to gain, and you can encourage Facebook users to click through with a clear CTA.


Boux Avenue

Another proven technique guaranteed to inspire consumers to spring into action is offering a discount. After all, who doesn’t love a bargain?


That’s what Boux Avenue does with its Facebook lead ads form. Like the Wealth Factory, it’s very clear about the benefits of signing up (a 20 percent discount and a regular newsletter).

To make the decision even easier, Boux Avenue makes signing up a snap with pre-filled information and a CTA button.

Offering a discount is something most businesses can do, and by simplifying form completion, you’re increasing the chances of prospects clicking. Bear that in mind with your ads, and add a time limitation to discounts to create urgency.


How to Set Up Facebook Lead Ads

Creating Facebook lead ads involves some basic preparation.

First, Facebook advises businesses to familiarize themselves with the terms of service and its advertising policies. If you want to list some questions on your form, Facebook suggests you ask your legal team to look them over first.

Then there’s just one more bit of prep: you need the link for your privacy policy as it will appear on the form.

With all that done, you’re ready to start creating your first ad. It’s simple to do. Just follow these steps:

Creating a Successful Facebook Lead Ad

  1. Log into your Facebook business account and click on “Publishing Tools.”
  2. Go to the “Forms Library” on the left-hand side of the page and click.
  3. Next, click “+Create”.
  4. Select “New Form” or “Duplicate” if you already have a form.
  5. Go to the “Create Form” window and fill out the “Form Name” box.
  6. Now, go to the “Form Type” field and select which form you’d like. There are two choices: Selecting “More Volume” lets you make accessible fillable forms suitable for mobile users. While setting “Higher Intent” allows users to review and confirm their details first.
  7. Next, go to the “Intro” section and create an introduction screen. Facebook has details on how to complete this stage. Here, you can add your images, headlines, and descriptions about your products/services.
  8. Go to “Questions” and choose + “Add Question.” Facebook lets you list up to 15.
  9. Next, move to the “Prefill Questions Section.” Fill out the description and explain how you intend to use or share the information people give you. Remember, you can’t use the info you gather for any other purpose other than the one you state.
  10. Select any pre-filled information you want for your form. Select categories by clicking “+ Add Category.”
  11. Go to “Privacy” and include your link text and the URL to the “Privacy Policy” box. You can also add a custom disclaimer by clicking “+Add Custom Disclaimer.”
  12. Move to “Completion.” Put in your headline, descriptions, CTA button, and add a link. You can include up to 60 characters for Headlines and CTAs.
  13. Click on the arrows on the top of “Form Preview.”
  14. Select “Publish” or “Save Draft” if you want to edit later. Ensure all your details are as you want them because you cannot edit your Instant Form once you’ve published it.
  15. Choose “Boost” to send out your form as an ad. Select your image/video, text, audience, length of publication, and budget.
  16. Click “Promote.”
  17. Congratulations! You’ve just created your first Facebook lead ad.


Frequently Asked Questions About Facebook Lead Ads

How much do Facebook lead ads cost?

Compared to other platforms, Facebook ads are not wildly expensive. On average, Facebook advertising costs $0.97 per click and $7.19 per 1000 impressions. These low numbers make advertising on Facebook extremely attractive to marketers across industries, with over seven million advertisers actively trying to engage consumers on the platform.

What are dynamic Facebook lead ads?

Dynamic Facebook lead ads are a cost-effective way to create and test ad variations and choose which one performs best. They allow advertisers to show different offers, images, and CTAs to each individual. Dynamic Facebook lead ads offer greater personalization and let you create locally relevant ads to enhance lead quality and increase sales.

What is the format of Facebook lead ads?

Ads come in-text links and carousels, and appear on different areas of the site, like feeds. Users see them labeled as “sponsored.”

Are there any tools for testing Facebook lead ads?

Marketo has a Facebook lead ads testing tool for checking functionality and Hevo Data has a similar tool. You can also measure parameters by adding them to your lead form.

Don’t forget to do some A/B testing as well to see which ads work best for your ideal audience.


Conclusion: Facebook Lead Ads

Facebook has a massive reach, which is why it makes sense for marketers and business owners to explore the available tools to get your products and services in front of a considerable audience. One of those tools is Facebook lead ads.

With the ability to create custom leads, Facebook lead ads provide significant advantages to advertisers.

Marketers can customize form fields, capture more prospect information, and target more relevant audiences while making the experience as simple as possible for users.

Aside from customization, Facebook lead ads offer many other advantages including increased conversions and getting a better understanding of your customers—making them an important part of any lead generation strategy.

Do you use Facebook lead ads? How are they working for you?


How to Make Social Advocacy Part of Your Employees’ Daily Routine

Your employees each have a morning ritual. Grab a cup of coffee. Scroll through Facebook’s News Feed. Respond to emails. Dial into a conference call. Start the workday.

What if your company could become a part of employees’ daily routines? What if there was a way for you to use this downtime to inform others and increase brand awareness?

Welcome employee social advocacy! By tapping into a daily habit that already exists, you can create social advocacy and amplify your marketing efforts.

How to Make Social Advocacy Part of Your Employees' Daily Routine

According to a 2016 survey from Bambu by Sprout Social, seven in ten employees are using social media at work. Blocking popular networks and monitoring browsing history isn’t going to stop anyone from checking Facebook—especially when 11 percent of those surveyed admitted to using social media during bathroom breaks.

Instead of trying to fight a habit that’s already ingrained in your workplace culture, embrace it! Encourage your employees to use their time on social to speak on your brand’s behalf. By outlining the individual benefits, identifying existing champions, and educating and empowering employees, you can strategically build a powerful advocacy program.


Answering the Question: What’s In It for Me?

One of the biggest hurdles in getting people involved in an advocacy program is convincing them that there’s a personal benefit. Before you introduce a formal or informal program, you need to answer the frequently asked question, “What’s in it for me?”.

The best way to do this is by not only communicating but also demonstrating the benefits of sharing company content on social.

Collect and share testimonials from sales representatives who have seen an increase in revenue by sharing curated content. Who has had success at positioning themselves as thought leaders within the marketplace? Identify a new employee who learned about the position through a social post.

If these use cases aren’t applicable, try surveying engaged employees to learn what they think is most valuable.

Marketing Tools

Additionally, you need to demystify the idea using social media at work negatively impacts productivity. Believe it or not, four in five people believe that.

Sure, there’s always going to be the 10 percent of surveyed employees who spend over two hours on social. However, a vast majority spend less than an hour scrolling through their feeds.

You may want your employees to hit the ground running sharing your awesome content, but that may not happen right away. What’s most important, initially, is that your employees are reading the information you’re posting. You want them to experience a more transparent and forthcoming workplace.


Identifying and Educating Existing Internal Advocates

Do a quick search on Instagram of your office location and a Twitter query of your branded hashtag. These employees are your initial allies and should be the first group of stakeholders you bring into your employee advocacy initiatives.

That’s what Katie Gear, Area E-Commerce Marketing Manager for Hyatt hotels in Chicago, Indianapolis, and Cincinnati, did when she first launched her advocacy efforts. Gear spoke with Sprout Social’s Community Outreach Manager, Sarah Nagel, about how she scaled her program and identified its first participants.

“Harness employees who are already sharing. Create a more meaningful conversation with their employer, and keep the dialogue they’re already participating in more open-ended,” Gear told Nagel.

Gear identified these brand advocates by searching social and approaching directors in sales and marketing. She asked them who from their teams would be a good fit. 54 percent of those surveyed responded that they don’t have a lot of guidance on how to use social media to advocate for their company.

Team work

To address this, Gear followed up by hosting informal social media 101 classes for Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

“The courses help them understand what I’m doing with the content and what I look for—and what content works best on what channel,” Gear told Nagel.

So, first, identify and then educate existing internal advocates to help you implement a more effective employee advocacy program. Leverage this highly engaged focus group for feedback. Lean on their insights to help revise your efforts before rolling it out to a larger audience.


Empowering Your Employees

Participants in your program shouldn’t view engaging with company news and relevant content as extra work—otherwise, they won’t opt-in.

6 Mistakes to Avoid With Your Employee Advocacy Program

In fact, 53 percent of employees surveyed don’t think that the marketing team makes it easy for them to advocate for the company on social media. Don’t make engaging with your brand more cumbersome than it needs to be.

Along with internal education on social media best practices, you need to streamline the sharing process and provide your employees with all the tools they need to be the best advocates possible.

When you’re sharing social content with your team, try this:

  • Accompany each post with suggested social messaging per each popular network.
  • Include a note with each piece of content that tells why what you’re sharing is important and who the internal stakeholders involved with the initiatives are.
  • If you’re citing a third-party source, make sure you’re highlighting a reputable publication.
  • Make sure that you’re asking your team members to share content and information that they think would resonate with all of the company’s employees or a departmental audience. Employee engagement, just like social media, should be a two-way dialogue.


Quantifying Employee Advocacy Success

Strategizing and implementing an employee advocacy program takes time and resources. Be sure that you’ll be able to measure the impact of your efforts. Adding UTM codes to the end of each piece of owned content you share with employees will make it easy to track, measure, and benchmark.

Some of the same social metrics you apply to your marketing efforts can be applied to your advocacy initiatives.

Keep in mind that those surveyed were 16 times more likely to read a social media post from a friend than from a brand. 81 percent of participants went as far as saying they would rather see a friend’s social post than a brand’s post.

Keep a close eye on your efforts, and continue to use the data and anecdotal feedback you receive to revise and refresh your program.


Cheers to Your Advocacy Leaders!

As your program gains momentum, your employees will see that advocating on social media isn’t as confusing or hard as they may think. Be sure to start out with a proper framework and approach. Getting your employees to incorporate advocacy into their daily routines can be a seamless and mutually beneficial process.

Why You Should Start Building Employee Advocacy on Day One

This post was originally written by Andrew Caravella and updated by Michelle Saunders in 2021.

The post How to Make Social Advocacy Part of Your Employees’ Daily Routine appeared first on Content Marketing Consulting and Social Media Strategy.


Using the Google Search Trends 2021 Report to Generate Content Ideas

As marketers, we’re constantly attuned to Google’s ever-changing algorithm, keeping an eye toward shifts in prioritization and SERPs.

Google is pretty good at equipping users (and businesses) with information about what it considers important by providing resources like their search engine optimization (SEO) guides and the annual Search Trends report.

Using the Google Search Trends 2021 Report to Generate Content Ideas

The Google Search Trends report can be an incredible asset that allows you to dig into users’ search habits and gain access to a steady stream of content ideas.

In this blog, we’ll unpack how to mine the Google Search Trends report for content gold to flesh out your content calendar into 2022 and beyond.

How to Do Quarterly Content Planning to 10x Content Output


What Is the Google Search Trends Report?

Published each year, the Google Search Trends report aggregates the highest-ranking terms for the year.

Curious readers—or those of us looking for content ideas—can visit the mini-site to explore search volume through several lenses.

google search trend in 2021 global

You can break it down by region and then a topic, including categories like actors, TV shows, sports teams, songs, and many more.

google search trends trending topics in us

While this report can certainly generate year-end nostalgia, it also offers a unique perspective into the terms that gained the most search volume and traction in the last year.

For marketers, that data can be gold.


Top Trends from the 2021 Google Search Trends Report

Regardless of what region you’re researching, you’ll find a common theme in this year’s report: perseverance.

2021 saw searchers looking for “how to heal” and “how to be hopeful.” This theme resonated in more concrete searches as well with high volume searches including, “how to start a business in 2021” and “how to get a job in 2021.”

Entertainment was another balm in a complicated year. We looked to Google for distraction and clarification, typing in searches like “Squid Game” and “Amanda Gorman.”

Squid Game

Here are a few other Google Search Trends that got a lot of attention around the globe this year:

  • Australia vs India
  • India vs England
  • IPL
  • NBA
  • Euro 2021
  • Copa América
  • India vs New Zealand
  • T20 World Cup
  • Squid Game
  • DMX

In the United States, here’s what users were most interested in overall:

  • NBA
  • DMX
  • Gabby Petito
  • Kyle Rittenhouse
  • Brian Laundrie
  • Mega Millions
  • AMC Stock
  • Stimulus Check
  • Georgia Senate Race
  • Squid Game

While these searches can entertain, they can also inform your content strategy, by helping you create content that users are likely to be interested in.


How to Use the Search Trends Report to Generate Content Ideas

Struggling to come up with fresh, new content ideas? I’m no stranger to the frustration that comes with this.

Using Google Search Trends, you can determine what topics users are interested in, increasing engagement while building relationships and goodwill.

content ideas

Below, I’ll break down the five best strategies for harnessing the insights associated with the search trends report to generate content ideas.


1. Use Popular Search Terms and Find a Unique Angle to Cover the Topic

While a blog post about the permanence of the cottage come aesthetic might be popular, this topic may not align with your brand. However, also topping the aesthetics search list is “sage green,” a topic that might be related to more industries.

Whether you’re a small boutique or a landscaping company, you can take advantage of this particularly high-volume query and build out a content plan to address it.

Sage green might not be in your wheelhouse.

If that’s the case, look for other search terms that might meet your audience’s interest in some way.

Grayscale 3D animated hand holding smartphone with liquid falling from the phone

This part of the Search Trends reports breaks down searches by different topics, including:

  • culture
  • economy
  • entertainment
  • environment
  • health and wellness
  • news and events
  • philanthropy
  • representation sports

“How to maintain mental health” was searched more than ever in 2021—most industries could leverage that to provide mental health advice and tips to their audience. For example, I might write about how to maintain mental health as a remote digital marketer or how to help your remote team maintain their mental health.

By aligning your audience’s interest with a popular search query, you not only increase the visibility of your content, you also offer your existing and would-be audience a fresh perspective within your industry.


2. Search for Topics Using the Search Bar

Suppose you’re curious about the search visibility behind a certain query. In that case, you can use the Google Search Trends report to explore how much a specific term resonates, as well as related queries and terms.

For example, we searched “digital marketing.”

In addition to highlighting the term’s prominence, the report also offers tons of valuable detail. We could build a content strategy with a pretty solid idea of what type of content will and won’t resonate from this one search.

google search trends report digital marketing list

In the “related topics” section, I see terms like education assessment and professional development, which means a list of digital marketing courses or training might do well.

Search the name of your industry and the main key terms you target and see what content ideas pop up.


3. Use the Google Trends Report to Find Topics that Appeal to Gen Z

In 2019, Gen Z officially outnumbered millennials, tallying 32.2 percent of the world’s population.

Even more impactful, Gen Z makes up over 40 percent of U.S. consumers.

Consider this: a third of the world’s population is Gen Z. You’re doing your brand a huge disservice if you don’t consider how to speak to this massive, tech-empowered group.

After you’ve identified topics you know resonate through your search bar exploration, how can you ensure your content resonates with this unique group?

The answer is pretty straightforward.

Your content needs to be more interactive and appealing.

Here’s how to do that:

Create More Interactive Content

The more opportunities audience members have to interact with your content, the more likely they will.


By incorporating interactive elements, you encourage action. Next time you’re planning content, consider including a poll, stickers, or slider that allows your audience to truly engage with your brand.

Personalize Your Messages

Gen Z grew up amid a time of increased personalization. In fact, they’ve come to expect it. Be sure that you use every personalization opportunity to reach this coveted demographic.


Fear of missing out, or FOMO, is still very much a thing. Take advantage of this fear by incorporating time-sensitive offers into your content, forcing your audience members to take action or miss out on a one-day-only deal.

Make Your Content More Visually Appealing

It’s no secret that Gen Zers flock to platforms like Instagram and TikTok, home to bite-sized video content. Take advantage of this content preference by drawing inspiration from the short, visually appealing videos that spread like wildfire.


4. Create Content Around Topics You’re Passionate About

It’s always easier to create compelling content around topics that resonate with you. As you peruse the 2021 Google Search Trends, keep an eye toward topics that resonate personally with both you and your brand identity.

Start by looking at the major search terms in each main topic I listed out above. Let’s say you work or own a coaching business and are looking for more topic ideas.

Photo of Oprah interviewing Meghan Markle and Prince Harry on outdoor patio

A quick look at popular “culture” topics shows us doom scrolling is the most popular topic in the culture section. How can you use that to your advantage? By matching it to your brand identity.

As a coach, you might write about how to avoid doom scrolling, how doom scrolling impacts your job search, or create a challenge to encourage your followers to stop doom scrolling and improve their mental health (which was another popular search term, as you might recall!)

After identifying high-performing topics, create a content plan to address them. Will you create blog posts, ebooks, or courses? Can you use these ideas in other areas of your marketing, like paid ads?


5. Identify New Niches

If you’re searching for a new niche, Google Search Trends is a great way to identify rapidly-expanding niches that may have content gaps you can fill.

To see search growth for a particular topic, simply set your search duration to “2003 to present,” so you can see long-term traffic on the topic.

Video clip of person wearing colorful dress dancing at Navratri celebration

This can also help you see when topics are most popular in a specific year, allowing you to plan your content publication around timeframes when Google users are historically searching for specific terms each year.

For example, topics around “fly fishing” tend to peak in the summer, when the weather’s nice. Tips for Black Friday marketing tend to peak in late November, as you might have guessed.


Frequently Asked Questions About the Google Search Trends 2021 Report

What is the most searched thing on Google in 2021?

Globally, the highest-volume search term was “Australia vs India.” In the United States, the most searched term in 2021 was “NBA.”

How do you find what is trending on Google?

Google releases its year-end search trend report once a year. In these pages, you’ll find the highest-volume search phrases in a variety of different categories, as well as through a geographical lens.

Throughout the remainder of the year, you can visit Google trends to see what the world is searching for.

How can you capitalize on search trends in marketing?

You can use search trends to power your content plan, perform keyword research, find seasonal trends, optimize your SEO strategy for video, and find related terms to outperform your competitors.

What are the search trends for late 2021?

The most popular search trends for late 2021 include mammography, why people are quitting their jobs, back to work bonus, potluck, small business Saturday, and how to become a volunteer firefighter.


Conclusion: Google Search Trends 2021 Report

The Google Search Trends report provides a nostalgic look at the year in review, with pop culture topics like Squid Game and news stories like the disappearance of Gabby Petito. However, they’ve also given us a tool we need to gain greater visibility into search patterns.

By mining these trends for insights into search patterns and behavior, you can create a content plan that speaks to the topics users care about.

The uses of the Google Search Trends report go beyond content ideas. You can also perform in-depth keyword research, use popular trends in your ad copy, and find new niches to target.

As you wade into your 2022 content planning, keep an eye toward the information Google has generously handed over—your click-through rate (CTR) will thank you.

What’s the most useful thing you’ve learned from the Google Search Trends report?