At the end of July, we were very fortunate to be invited by Google to spend the day at their new premises in Melbourne. The size and avant-garde design of the building and offices were what we’d come to expect; the presenters and staff were warm, welcoming and highly professional; and the catering and hospitality, nothing short of impressive!
Lots of ‘digital learnings’ were on the agenda, and to start with, we got into some of the progress happening right now and the challenges. One of which is the featured image in relation to “Machine Learning”. To put it mildly, despite major advancements, similarities between some objects as opposed to faces still have the cognitive capabilities of the most advanced machines challenged… So, here is one of the biggest machine learning challenges: Muffin or Chihuahua; who would have thought?
Back to the more serious stuff. Similar to a car capable of adapting its gearing and driveability according to your consistent driving habits, machine learning services are not just about the ability to add a name, title or noun to an object or person, but also about providing search results and targeted advertisements related to what you have been looking for? Why?… because consumers do not always buy from the very first visit to a website; in fact, often, not on the same day of the first interaction. Think about yourself; just because you ended up on someone’s website does not mean that you are going to hire their services or buy their products “right now!”
How often do we, Marketing Executives, face these dilemma?
A few days of the customer’s invoice has been paid and the campaign has gone live, we get the call: “My phone isn’t ringing, yet… and I have not one customer that’s come in or rung and said that they came because of the campaign!”
Drilling further into “Attribution Modelling”, rules are set in place to determine the various touchpoints of a visitor from first interaction to conversion. You will hear many marketers talk about “clicks” or even “impressions” etc… what we focused on developing our learnings further was on the real value of a converted visitor and the “Time Decay Attribution”.
Why drill this much into it? The undecisive personality of an individual in real life can be characteristically the same in their conversion indecision online. Unless there is an urgent need (and that data will be reflective in emergency categories like “Veterinary Surgeons” for example), in non-urgent categories, a visitor INTENDING ON converting into a decision can still be swayed by:
- How much money they currently have in their account?
- What other deals may pop up that are cheaper?
- If they need to get to a location, what is the weather like?
- Or, should they wait until the want becomes a need?
All of the above are not in the marketing executive’s control. Our job is to generate appearances with quality, relevant content to initiate the intent to convert. Believe it or not, we drilled deeper than the seeming story that “Demographic” tells; which in fact, is not enough, at all. “Audience Insights” within a campaign console tells us a lot more – e.g. 49% of Visitors, will visit between 2 to 4 websites before converting! None of these discussions about “Let me tell you how I search…” – you know the unfortunate assumption that everyone actually has the same search habit as the business owner (the one paying for the campaign that you’re running).
Truth is, we cannot buckle to that – because at the end of the day, running a campaign formula, dictated by the client to keep him/her happy because he/she is paying the bills switches your role from a knowledgeable marketing executive into an administrator/secretary facilitating the demand of a payer. Which one are you?
When it all fails to work, where do you think the finger will be pointed at?
Utilising experience, expertise and Digital Marketing intellect, the consultation is not about sitting with a customer and telling them how many clicks that they have had. It is utilising the data acquired during the course of the first quarter (after providing them with appearances ahead of their competitors) yes to generate clicks but in turn ALSO knowing how to set up the campaign to analyse the gathered data (not just clicks but the full customer journey) in order to do the following:
- MEASURE – ATTRIBUTE – ACT
- IDENTIFY – RE-ENGAGE – EXPAND!
The priceless journey of an executive who can “talk” to you about how to grow your business; having that same person capable enough to “set up the campaign”; to then use the campaign data to “analyse the full journey” including “cross-device activity” in order to drive growth through measurement and attribution is one that you need to hold on to if you ever find it.
We could go on for ever with what we know and continue to push ourselves to learn. We are extremely grateful that Google hosted us. The exchange of what we, marketing executives, learn from our clients’ with budget expectations – (the ones utilising us for digital marketing), and Google teaching us how to use their Google Ads consoles to their limits and keeping us abreast of each new development is one that we intend on making the most of. Why? Because when people have a need, they Google it; which means, and in order of importance, one needs to have a plan and budget for:
- Priority Paid Appearances (S.E.M.)
- Decent search rankings for their website (S.E.O.)
- and, their MyBusiness map properly set up, should they have a physical address
(and this has changed a lot, as well. Just because it’s free, do not take it for granted!)
Who will you speak to for your growth strategies?