Recent blog posts

Digital Marketing’s Dirty Little Secret

Posted by on in Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

I am a digital marketer. I have been certified by Google for both their AdWords and their Analytics products. Not only do I do digital marketing, I love it! I don’t just drink the Kool-Aid, I make it at home and bring extra just in case.

That’s why it pains me to stare directly into the camera, exposing the fourth wall to the entire audience. Let me apologize in advance to my colleagues in the digital marketing industry, this article might make you think about adjusting your sales pitch.

The truth is search engine advertising receives way too much credit. It’s just not as effective as your digital advertising team (or intern) says it is. As business owners and marketing professionals, we want to believe it’s working as well as it appears to be. “Finally,” we think, “an advertising tactic that’s measurable and provides positive ROI!”

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Everyone is Not Your Customer

Posted by on in Digital Capabilities

Seth Godin, the best-selling author, marketer, entrepreneur, and public speaker has a quote that I love: “The key to failure is trying to please everyone.” As a marketer, I’m constantly annoying my clients with questions about their ideal customer. Sometimes I get a well thought out and researched response. Other times I get a vague answer. While it might be true that all adults over 30 years of age could potentially be your customer, those are not well-defined parameters for marketing purposes.

There’s a temptation to think as broadly as possible about your target audience. Even seasoned marketers make this mistake. It might seem logical, after all, why wouldn’t you want to sell to as many customers as possible?


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Why Am I Not Seeing My Search Ad?

Posted by on in Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

As an employee of a digital marketing agency that’s responsible for running many digital marketing campaigns, I get this question a lot. Unlike traditional media, like a TV spot or a gigantic billboard, your paid search ads are not designed to always be front and center. In the simplest form, your ad should answer a person’s question. Answering that question is a powerful way for you to attract more customers by reaching the right people at the right time. Unless you’re that person (which you probably are not) it’s possible that you will not see your own ad. Which is a good thing! 

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Poor Data Interpretation Can Result in Bad Business Decisions

Posted by on in Analytics / Data Analysis

Don’t let the numerous articles written about “big data” fool you, data is not exciting. In its raw form, data is quite boring. In fact, if data were a movie, it would be “Ishtar.” Data by itself is confusing and lacks a compelling narrative.

Data is only useful when it tells a story and provides insights that can lead to action. Raw data does not provide actionable insights.

One of the reasons I’ve staked my career in digital marketing is its ability to track results. There isn’t a service that Mason Digital provides that doesn’t include some form of measurement. But measuring something just because you can is not a useful exercise. It should be used for the sole purpose of improving performance over time.

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Using Strategy to Define Tactics

Posted by on in Media Strategy

The terms “strategy” and “strategic” are thrown around quite a bit in today’s business culture. In the realm of marketing, and more specifically digital marketing, it’s practically a meme. Every now and then I hear someone use one of these terms correctly. Usually though, the more someone uses the word “strategy” in a conversation, the less they understand the word’s meaning.

Strategy can be defined in a number of ways. One of my favorite definitions is credited to Michael Porter, a professor at the Harvard Business School and noted author in the fields of business and economics, who wrote “The essence of strategy is choosing what not to do.”

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