Online is evolving, but making the complex simple and the simple compelling is key, says James Gaubert
[Campaign - December 1, 2013] The words ‘Digital Journey’ are bandied around on a daily basis, which got me thinking about my own digital journey and how I’ve been fortunate enough to grow with technology and be part of the ever-changing digital landscape. My journey into digital began 16 years ago at a boutique UK digital marketing agency. We were a ‘full services’ agency that offered two services: emails and building micro-sites. And, 16 years ago, that was about as complex as digital really got. Fast-forward to the present day and things are very different.
Today, the digital landscape comprises of a vast mix of different channels such as social networks, blogs, websites, email; mobile devices such as smartphones or tablets; videos, widgets, kiosks, QR codes, banners, rich media, and gamification. These channels help marketers build relationships and advocacy with consumers, publicise their brands, and ultimately sell their products or services. But these added levels of complexity cannot afford to be underestimated, for both consumers and marketeers. The speed of change within the digital world at the moment is astonishing and only set to get faster as a host of new tools, methods and technology are about to come into play. As we head into 2014 I thought I would share with you my ‘Big Five’ digital trends that I believe are going to have a huge impact on what we all do over the next 12 months.
A POV on the Google algorithm change from the MRM Performance Department.
A recent announcement by Google stating that they will make all organic keyword level data unavailable has made some marketers claim that SEO is dead. Again. However, this is not the case by any means. SEO is a unique combination of art and science where you use the information you know to optimize a website so it will stand out from the almost 650 million other websites on the World Wide Web.
Google updates its algorithm around 600 times every year so an effective SEO strategy starts by following Google’s guidelines and continuously monitoring, revisiting, and testing different tactics.
Background: Google privacy update 2011
In October 2011, Google announced a privacy update that impacted marketers’ visibility into natural search (SEO) data. Google began encrypting keywords from natural search traffic for users signed in to a Google product—including Chrome, Google+, Gmail, and YouTube—who used a secure connection.
Prior to this update, analysts could pull data from a Web analytics platform, such as Google Analytics or SiteCatalyst, and analyze natural search traffic and conversion by keyword. This level of visibility has since eroded, as all keywords driving natural search traffic from logged-in users were replaced with “(not provided)”.
The percentage of “not provided” natural search terms has steadily increased over the past two years. Many of the most popular browsers—Firefox, Chrome, and Safari on iOS6—released updates in 2012 and early 2013 that defaulted to Google encrypted search, regardless if a user was logged in to Google. This means the overall impact on any given website’s natural search keyword data is driven by its users’ device and browser choices.
It is important to note this change only applied to natural search traffic. Traffic driven by paid search ads (SEM) continued to pass the search query string along to the destination website.
Unfortunately, there is no meaningful industry benchmark to provide context for importance of SEM or SEO relative to other traffic channels. For example, a microsite that is campaign-driven and supported almost exclusively through SEM and paid media would not expect to see a lot of organic search traffic. On the other hand, a website with little-to-no SEM budget will expect most of their traffic to be from organic search.
Present Day: Google expands natural search query encryption
In September 2013, Google confirmed they will be expanding upon this privacy update. Over the next several months, it is expected that 100% of organic search queries will be encrypted, or “not provided,” regardless of their browser or Google login status.
The missing natural search data comes with a caveat; clients enrolled in Google AdWords and Google Webmaster Tools (GWT) can use GWT in conjunction with Google Analytics to view the top 2,000 natural search terms for their site for the last 90 days, which Google will be expanding to a full year sometime in the future. The metrics provided in this dashboard include impressions, clicks, average position in Google, and click-through-rate.
While websites that are not clients of Google AdWords will not have access to these top 2,000 natural search terms, websites do not actually have to bid on PPC terms in AdWords to be granted access – simply creating an account is enough.
Read more for how this affects you, and to learn solutions and best practices for handling this change. Download the full POV here: MRM Google Algorithm Change POV
For more information please contact
Charlotte Beckwith, Account Executive, at:
t: 646-865-6223 / e: Charlotte.Beckwith@mrmworldwide.com
Award-Winning São Paulo Agency Furthers Digital and CRM Expertise
MRM, a top global digital and direct agency within McCann Worldgroup, a unit of the Interpublic Group of Companies (NYSE:IPG), has acquired the fast-growing, award-winning Brazilian agency E/OU. This acquisition, which will be called E/OU MRM, expands and strengthens MRM’s current global footprint of 31 offices in 22 countries. MRM works with some of the world’s leading brands, including General Motors, Nestlé, Intel, Google, Zurich Financial Services, The Coca-Cola Company, Verizon, Mastercard and Johnson & Johnson. In Brazil MRM has clients such as Nestlé, Nike and Regus.
MRM’s President Michael Mclaren commented, “We are excited to be joining forces with E/OU in Brazil. E/OU delivers powerful core CRM and eCRM capabilities. With a stellar creative reputation and high-growth potential, E/OU fits well within MRM’s global strengths and perfectly complements our current offerings across the network. They will help us deliver breakthrough solutions and memorable digital brand experiences to our clients in Brazil and across Latin America.”
Eduardo Rodrigues, VP-Creative Director at E/OU, added, “At E/OU, we are aligned perfectly with the MRM perspective of living at the intersection of creativity, technology and performance. We are excited by the potential of this new relationship. Becoming a vital new part of MRM strengthens our position in Brazil and around the region, and expands our creative possibilities.”
E/OU is the second investment by McCann WorldGroup in Brazil this year after Preview, an agency specializing in health and wellness communications. Pablo Walker, President, McCann Worldgroup Latin America & Caribbean, said, “We’re confident the deal between MRM and E/OU in Brazil will further strengthen our commitment to providing clients with multiplatform creative and strategic ideas that help them break through the marketing clutter and build their brands, truly differentiating us in a highly competitive environment and further solidifying our leadership in Brazil.”
E/OU MRM, which has about 80 employees, will continue to be led by its current key management, including Fabio Caldeira de Souza, COO and VP-Client Services; Eduardo Rodrigues, VP-Creative Director; and Eduardo Marino Soutello, VP-Planning & Research.
Established in 2003, E/OU is a fast-growing agency providing a range of digital, direct, relationship and CRM services. Its largest clients include GM, Santander, Qualicorp, BASF, Michelin, Universidade Metodista and AC Camargo. As an acclaimed Brazilian agency, E/OU has been honored with 4 Echo Awards, named ABEMD “Agency of The Year” in 2011, 2012 and 2013, has 18 trophies in AMAUTA, and has been recognized as one of the best communication companies to work in Brazil by Great Place to Work.
MRM is a top global digital agency made up of a diverse collection of craftspeople focused on creativity, performance and technology. MRM offers a suite of capabilities including branding, strategy, relationship marketing, design, measurement & analytics, mobile, search, social, loyalty programs, platform & application development, system integration, engagement planning, asset production, & asset distribution. The agency has 31 offices in 22 countries and counts Bristol-Myers Squibb, General Mills, General Motors, Intel, Johnson & Johnson, Kraft, Nestlé, U.S. ARMY, Verizon and Wells Fargo among its clients. MRM is a part of McCann Worldgroup, an Interpublic company. For more information, please visit www.mrmworldwide.com.
About McCann Worldgroup
McCann Worldgroup, part of Interpublic Group (NYSE: IPG), is a leading global marketing company with 23,000 employees in more than 120 countries, comprising McCann Erickson (advertising), MRM (digital marketing/relationship management), Momentum (event marketing/promotion), McCann Health (professional/dtc communications), CRAFT (global adaptation and production), UM (media management), Weber Shandwick (public relations), and FutureBrand (consulting/design).
After spending the last four years at mcgarrybowen, where she last served as managing director/digital strategy & social media, Ariana Stolarz has, as of last week, officially moved on and joined up with MRM, where she now serves as EVP/director of strategy for the agency’s eastern region that includes the New York and Princeton offices.
Read the full article on mediabistro.com/agencyspy.
AdAge.com, by Simon Dumenco
A couple weeks back I published a column titled “Does your social-media strategy involve wasting time on idiots like me?” It turns out that when I pose a question in a headline, you, dear readers, are more than happy to answer it.
(Image: Kelsey Dake)
And now, a little shout out to the number crunchers. We’ve received confirmation that as of yesterday, Greg Corso has assumed the role of EVP, director of data/analytics for MRM’s New York and Princeton operations.
Read the full article on mediabistro.com/agencyspy.
Agency Uses Centers of Excellence to Share Best Practices
New York, NY October 1, 2013 – MRM has been named a top direct agency in 2013 by Crain’s BtoB magazine. MRM was also recognized earlier in the year as a top interactive agency by the publication. MRM was honored for providing its clients with leading-edge digital, database and relationship marketing expertise. The agency has been awarded Runner-Up honors in the category (BtoB does not award top-winner agency to one company in consecutive years). MRM was named both “Top Interactive Agency” and “Direct Agency of the Year” in 2012.
Michael Mclaren, MRM President, states, “We are delighted to be recognized once again by such a prestigious trade publication in the BtoB category. This is further evidence of our expertise and deep understanding of the vitally important B to B audience. 2013 continues to be a notable year for MRM. We’ve been successful at many of the awards competitions around the world, while our client relationships continue to expand as we deliver powerful ideas and concrete results.”
No stranger to being recognized by Crain’s BtoB, in addition to the 2012 wins, MRM was the winner of “Top Interactive Agency” in 2010, and “Direct Agency of the Year” in 2008, 2006 and 2004.
Andy Jacobs – MRM Global Chief Technology Officer/Director of Global Partnerships joins Mark Adams – UK Director at The Audience, Daniel Fellow – Global Social Commerce Manager at Nokia and Richard Jones – Founder & CEO at EngagedSciences for a panel at Social Media Week London on making hashtags count.
Watch the panel here:
You’ve Got a Hashtag, Now How Do You Make It Count? Part 1
You’ve Got a Hashtag, Now How Do You Make It Count? Part 2
In the agency business, so much of the buzz, glamour and overall effort is put into the pitch process. Many late nights and weekends are spent eating cold pizza in an effort to win that coveted new client. But it seems that effort falls short when the actual onboarding of the new client or the client transition begins.
For an agency, the considerable energy and thought put into winning a pitch is wasted if the same zeal is not exhibited during the client transition. Executing a large-scale client transition is both an art and a science.
The euphoria of winning a big account is usually followed by days of buzz with both incumbent and winning agencies reading the trade press and listening to the rumor mills. However, seldom does a client include the transition approach as a key consideration in winning the business. This path can be ill-fated because the quality of the transition often dictates the nature of the relationship for years to come.
The transition team is similar to an offensive line in football. When done well, it is seldom noticed by the casual fan. But a poor transition can lead to a fumble or sack and can draw much unwanted attention. An underprepared client transition team can set the stage for a doomed relationship and is often the cause for the type of failed client-agency interaction that makes headlines.