September 9th looked like a very normal beginning of the week in Dublin. A fastidious drizzle dampened the surface of living and nonliving things alike, making even the straightest hair go frizzy.
Children are back to school and traffic is back to our usual level of craziness. In the swarming streets of the Irish capital, taxi drivers yell at cyclists, cyclists rant at bus drivers, bus drivers rage against pedestrians, who blame it on taxi drivers.
As we said, a habitual Monday morning in Ireland, if it wasn’t for the foreign tuft of curly hair and the exotic Brazilian beauty approaching the steps of VROOM Digital. Who are they? The Beauty and the Fleeced? They’re the latest VROOM’s recruits, of course! Daniel and Camila joined our team and we’re absolutely thrilled to start working with them!
Moisture and traffic aside, this has been an exciting month for VROOM Digital: 5 of our team attended Learn Inbound 2019 at the Aviva Stadium, absorbing new knowledge and thought-provoking insights (and a discrete number of gadgets) from some of the world’s best digital marketers.
However, the biggest thrill came from Google: we’ve been shortlisted for no less than three Google Premier Partner Awards this year across EMEA!
Kudos to our PPC team, who’ve really outdone themselves this time, landing nominations for our clients Hunt Office, Kearys CarStore and Swyft Energy (* pops open champagne *).
“We’re over the moon, to be honest” beamed Shane our MD! “This is our 8th nomination at Google’s Premier Partner Awards in 4 years. We are particularly proud of this year, as it’s our first time shortlisting for 3 awards, Growing Business Online, Google Shopping and Display”
“Just 100 Agencies shortlist out of 3000 Premier Partners across Europe, Middle East and Africa at the annual Partner Awards. We’re delighted to remain a top 3% Google Premier Partner, a stat we are immensely proud of. We’ll enjoy the awards held here in Dublin on the 1st of October. Thanks to Marie Davis, Meave Larkin & Adam Hetherington of Google’s Irish team, for continuing to deliver their world-class support”.
Accelerated Delivery No longer Available on Search & Shopping Campaigns
If you haven’t switched your delivery method to Standard yet, be aware that Google will do it automatically on the 1st of October, with the exception of Display and Video campaigns.
Ad Scheduling and Google Ads Automated Bidding Strategies will be key after this change if you want to have more control over when and how often your ads are delivered.
“Average position” Is Being Retired
Mainly “Search Top IS” & “Search abs. Top IS” will be used as a replacement metric for “average position”.
- Search top IS: The impressions you received in the top location above organic search results.
- Search top impression share = Impressions on top/eligible impressions on top
- Abs. top IS: Is the impressions you received in the absolute top location above all other ads & organic search results.
- Search absolute top impression rate = Impressions on the absolute top/Impressions
Take some time to review your reporting, bid strategies, custom rules & filters before it goes away.
Invalid Clicks – A Now Fraudulent Game
Whilst browsing the internet and all of the latest digital gossip, we stumbled upon a recent article written by Roger Montti. In this article, he explains how Google is finally cracking down on ‘invalid clicks’. One might ask, what are these so-called invalid clicks? Well here is the answer! Invalid clicks are essentially clicks that generate no leads.
This crackdown is mostly surrounding the AdSense realm of our digital marketing sector. This is mainly down to website owners putting advertisements on their websites through AdSense, thus generating an income for the owner (of the site and of the ad). This income should only be generated by actual clicks, from actual people. Unfortunately, before this crackdown, publishers of the ads could try and generate clicks inorganically. Examples of these inorganic or invalid clicks may include: Clickbots (services promising instant traffic); the AdSense user clicking on the advertisement, themselves; using deceptive language to encourage clicks (clickbait).
Fret not! This crackdown will not affect most publishers. Most users of AdSense do not exploit the previous loopholes. The crackdown is mainly to filter out any publishers who are not abiding by the rules. If you are one of these publishers, your ads will be taken down and you will be notified by Google, highlighting the issues, which will give you a chance to fix them.
Threads, Facebook Latest Attack on Snapchat
In line with Mark Zuckerberg’s prediction on private messaging being the future of the company, Instagram is developing a new messaging app called Threads, with the main function of encouraging “constant, intimate sharing between users and their closest friends.”
It’s not the first time that the photocentric platform tried to launch a companion messaging app. Earlier this year, it ended its support to Direct, a project that went up in smoke because users didn’t like switching to another app to send messages.
Currently being tested internally, Threads will allow users to “automatically share their location, speed and battery life with friends, alongside the typical text, photo and video correspondence” users usually exchange through Instagram with their selected “close friends”.
The focus on intimacy plus the Snapchat-style filters seem to be another attempt by Instagram to copy the core functionalities of its main competitor, a fact that, according to the Guardian, has already happened 18 times.
It’s still unclear when the new standalone app will be launched, but the question is, if users couldn’t bother switching app with Direct, why would they do it with Threads?
Tweet Tests Carousel Ad Format
After testing carousel ads to promote app installs, Twitter is expanding these ad formats to other campaign types and possibly even organic posts.
Unlike Facebook, Twitters’ carousel is composed of a larger image and followed by a swipeable carousel stream of smaller pictures linking to the same page. The new layout focuses more on the visual element, and definitely sticks out more in the feed.
Bye Bye Likes, Welcome Post Saves
After Instagram started to remove likes, Facebook started to experiment with hiding likes too! If the social media king is considering expanding this test even further, it means that, despite the uproar stirred by the influencers deprived of their favourite KPI, the pros are more than the cons.
Moreover, there is a new “hot” success metric that the algorithm is now considering as a key signal for positive engagement: post saves. They’re not a new feature, they’ve been around for at least two years, but they have now become indicators of quality: the more people save your posts, the higher they will show up in feeds and Instagram Explore.
Instagram Spark AR effects
One day you wake up to the sound of your bucolic birdsong ringtone, tap on the Instagram icon to check in on other people’s business while sipping your usual pitch-black coffee and suddenly realise that Facebook now lets you build and share your own augmented reality filters on Instagram stories.
What?! Yep, you can now cover yourself in flapping 3D butterflies and rough diamonds without spending a single euro. With Spark AR Studio platform you can craft your AR effects like graphic designers would add layers in Photoshop.
This is a huge opportunity for brands and influencers, who could not only create their own “branded” filters but also let Users “try” a new pair of glasses on or how a specific curtain colour would “look” in their living room. For example, Kylie Cosmetics is allowing followers to “try on” different lipsticks to find the most suitable for their skin tone.
Instagram also introduced an “Effect Gallery” for niche AR effects from up-and-coming artists that you can use and even save without having to follow the creator.
2019 sounds like the year of the Third Dimension, as just a few days after the AR effects announcement, Facebook disclosed that 3D photos are now available to Android devices too. According to the Californian social media giant, more than 70 million 360 photos had been uploaded since the launch of Facebook 360. Could this be the end of two-dimensional photography?
LinkedIn New Insights Hub
Are you familiar with LinkedIn Success Hub? It’s a platform where marketers can find useful content and resources to kick start their advertising campaigns. If not, go check it out, because LinkedIn is constantly adding new elements to facilitate digital marketers’ job.
This month was the time of Insights and Research Hub, a wealth of data-driven information about people, industries and advertising:
- In People Insights you can drill-down into your top audiences, access the most resonating topics and measure engagement levels.
- Industry Insights will offer an overview of B2B marketing trends, success stories and ideas to set your business apart from competitors.
- With Advertising Insights you’ll get guidance and advice on ad types and strategy to make the most of your advertising efforts.
More Page Badges on Facebook
Facebook introduced new badges following the wish expressed by a good portion of users to identify leaders within a group and to reward outstanding contributions by members who are not necessarily admins or moderators.
The aim is not only to please its users, but to encourage engagement. In fact, if you read a comment by a “visual storyteller”, you might be enticed to check more of his/her posts. Or if an admin sees an “Anniversary follower”, he/she might be prompted to thank him.
Learn Inbound 2019
In this DigiJuice edition, we decided to focus on Learn Inbound 2019 and share a selection from three powerful talks about SEO that we consider to be invaluable for any digital marketer out there.
Learn Inbound is a 2-day Dublin based digital marketing conference with international speakers, taking place once a year. VROOM Digital has been attending this insightful conference on a yearly basis, and this year was no exception. If you would like to check our keynotes from the previous year, click here.
Let’s start with the talk by Judith Lewis about “SEO is Dead Again? It will never die”, the first speaker of this year’s conference. If you have ever wondered what matters and what doesn’t matter in SEO lately, this talk would be definitely useful for you.
Judith mentioned ranking factors which work and those which don’t work in today’s SEO campaigns. You can stop worrying about Yoast traffic lights system, keyword density or social links – these are not ranking metrics. Judith summed up things which no longer work in SEO, such as Noindex Robots.txt, mentioned in latest Digijuice. You can check Judith’s slides here.
To move on to Local SEO, let’s mention a great talk by Greg Gifford from Wikimotive. Local SEO has been gaining its power over recent years and has become an inevitable part of every local business. Google My Business profile is crucial proof of your digital existence if you are willing to attract customers in your local area. But it doesn’t end just there. By properly optimising your Google My Business profile, you can impress your future customers and also be one step ahead from your competitors. If you have a local business, definitely have a look at Greg’s slides here.
There was great coverage of content marketing, link building and digital PR at Learn Inbound this year, which brought us some very interesting talks. One of those was a talk by Irina Nica from Hubspot about Link building & Content – 2Scaling Links To Lead Gen Content: The Prospecting Approach That Guarantees Results”. As we know, link building is hard and that’s why content type, content quality and brand awareness matters.
Having a scaled strategy on how to approach link building is important to achieve results: campaign setup, prospecting and outreach are three main stages of a link building campaign. You can check Irina’s slides here.
Some of our VROOM Digital team in attendance – happy campers all round (from left to right) – Giulia from Paid Social Team, Nikol from SEO Team, Anna from Paid Social Team, and Cian from PPC Team. Thanks, Learn Inbound, we had a blast again!