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Weekly roundup: 5 digital marketing tips, trends and tactics

Our roundup of noteworthy digital marketing insights, tips and trends from last week’s news:

1. Google Hummingbird: Should we love it or hate it? 

Google's been messing with its search algorithm in recent months — and digital marketers are either loving or hating it. Take Hummingbird, a new search algorithm Google has quietly rolled out. Now, when a user enters search terms, Google won't simply rank results based on specific keywords. Now it prioritizes results by intuiting what it thinks the user is actually looking for. So what do marketing experts think? Grant Simmons from Search Enginge Watch, loves it. Marketers, he writes, will see "more relevant and diverse results, as search engines seek to promote not just the better single result but also the better associated results." Asher Elran, writing for Entrepreneur, isn't so bullish: Google's move was about helping users, not advertisers, he writes: "While this is new and exciting, it is also a clear message by Google that it does not owe us [the marketer] anything." What do you think?

Read more at Search Engine Watch and Entrepreneur

2. John Battelle: Banner ads are the "archeology of the future"

Okay, it's not just banner ads — but online advertising in general — that's creating the backbone for all future interactions online, writes Battelle. He's talking specifically about customer data and the smart ways advertisers are using personal information to create relevant experiences for all consumers online. “Every retail store you visit, every automobile you drive (or are driven by), every single interaction of value in this world can and will become data that interacts with this programmatic infrastructure,” argues Battelle,

Read more at Battelle Media

3. Seth Godin: How to recreate a Black Friday media trap — every other day of the year

Godin marvels at how retailers have been able to turn the Friday after Thanksgiving into a media frenzy that heralds the "official" start of the holiday shopping season. Well, guess what? Godin says all marketers can follow the Black Friday playbook to turn any press event into a "media trap." Writes Godin:

  1. "Find something that people are already interested in doing (in this case, shopping)."
  2. "Add scarcity, mob dynamics, a bit of fear."
  3. "Repeat the meme in the media. Press releases, B roll, clever statistics regardless of veracity."
  4. "Do it on a slow news day, and mix in famous names, famous brands and even some hand-wringing about the plight of workers."

Read more on Seth’s Blog

4. The secret to fostering innovation? Not a cool office design 

Think the office foosball machine sparks marketing innovation? Think again. Researchers at Siegel+Gale, a global branding firm, say snack-filled kitchens are secondary. The No. 1 way to inspire workers to create is by having — and showing commitment to — a clearly-defined company purpose, writes Margaret Malloy, Siegel+Gale's global CMO. "We define purpose," writes Malloy, "as not as what a company does, but rather why it does it, answering the critical question: 'Why do we do what we do?'"

Read more at Wired's Innovation Insights

5. The biggest mistakes digital marketers make

How did McDonald's make such a mess out of its Twitter #McDStories campaign? Why did phone maker HTC release a video that, while meant to be funny, actually insulted consumers' intelligence? Lattice Engines,business applications company, recently released an infographic that looks at some of the biggest marketing blunders — and reveals what went wrong.

Read more at Lattice Engines

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