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15 Oct

Posted by rogerm

It's interesting how a 'credit crunch' or 'recession' in the economy affects the way companies do business. One frustrating symptom was the increased amount of cold calling that went on during Q2 and 3 as sales managers tried to achieve targets. What a pain, and how frustrating for the poor people who had to perform it. Then there was the DIY Digital marketing wave... A huge increase in badly put together, poorly executed email campaigns. the SaaS Email providers made some money, but the upshot is that a lot of companies became quickly dissillusioned with the concept and struck it off the list of marketing tactics. And of course, the saviour of the credit crunch, Google Adwords. Free money off vouchers have been flying around in virtually every publication that hits the d...

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22 Sep

Posted by airtimeandy

As an agency we receive a lot of speculative B2B email but the one below takes the biscuit. The warning. Always check your data lists before sending as you can do yourself a lot of harm. As these guys have done. We won't be recommending them to any of our clients! [caption id="attachment_349" align="aligncenter" width="430"] How to annoy your prospects with incorrect targeting. They actually sent this out to agencies![/caption]

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11 Sep

Posted by rogerm

Interesting to see that Google have modified their search form enlarging the box and the font to about 130% of the original size. At first glance it looks a bit odd if you are a regular user, and you instincively check to see if your browser has inadvertantly been set to a higher percentage view as everything below it remains as it was. However, I guess it will be a usability and accessibility plus and help to reduce the number of typos, or will it? http://www.google.com

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16 Jun

Posted by rogerm

Now this couldn't be easier. Use the pingback URL to make sure your sitemap.xml file is added to their directory. http://www.bing.com/webmaster/ping.aspx?siteMap=[your_sitemap_url_here] If successful you'll get the following message in your browser window Thanks for submitting your sitemap. There you go, nice and easy!

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02 Jun

Posted by rogerm

Design and build requirements It goes without saying that you need to be able to design and construct quality email in the first place, and that is hurdle number one for a lot of smaller companies using self service email packages - they don't even get into the inbox. Well crafted creative does cut through, and when combined with a policy of testing in different browsers, and scrutinising the soft bounce statistics we can build a reasonably clear picture of deliverability. We can even do on the fly split testing of creative and subject lines. Good Data in Good Data out But you should not overlook the importance of data. You get out what you put in, and with email marketing you would be well advised to have not just a name and email address but also a telephone number, mailin...

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30 May

Posted by airtimeandy

Star Digital was recently engaged to build the Ethical Edge Blog for an emerging CSR consultancy based in Beijing in China. www.ethicaledge.info It was very interesting to engage with this client, as they taught us about how the Chinese view media as a whole, and how the population has developed a cautious approach to above the line traditional advertising methods. We discovered that due to the different cultural make up in China they have developed large extended family and friend social networks, where the average person has a social circle upwards of five times that of the average westerner. No wonder then that the internet has become a favoured form of communication in China, and that digital mrketing techniques based on trust, reviews and social networking appear to be growi...

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04 May

Posted by rogerm

We recently attended the Internet World show in London and found it very interesting to note that a number of companies are developing business models by partnering with open source technologies and then selling on the expert services of design and build within them. We've seen this over the years with the ubiquitous and brilliant Word Press that is used for this Blog, and the number of excellent plug-ins and community support available make it an obvious choice. But as a digital marketing agency, typically we've had to offer robust licensed solutions for clients, and to that end we've been reselling technologies such as Activedition for CMS and ePages for eCommerce. The catch for clients in this climate is that they come at a price, a typical license costing thousands before you've e...

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06 Apr

Posted by rogerm

I was speaking with a friend from Barclaycard yesterday, and we got onto the subject of their contactless payment technology. You've probably seen the TV ads with the guy on the water slide. Well I was pretty excited about it until I heard that its only been approved for payment up to £10 GBP because retailers are worried about fraudulent use. I think the real opportunity for this technology is not in traditional retail, no doubt it'll be great for the morning paper, packet of cigs or a bottle of wine on the way home. But people understand chip and pin, it isn't that hard to use, and retailers won't want to think about increased risk of card fraud in a tough economic cycle. No I think the real vision for contactless payment technolgy will be in the realms of e-commerce. The ma...

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01 Apr

Posted by rogerm

We've been a bit too busy to post anything lately due to the volume of work over here at Star Digital. We've had new web builds to do for Swatkins Silverware, Crown Green Bowler Discount Centre and Filtersource, all of which are complex solutions. As always we made sure that each site was properly configured with Google Analytics so that our customers can get a good gauge of the traffic coming into their sites, and for the Bowlers, understanding the ROI on any advertising or email marketing spend. To that end we noticed that Google have launched a Google Analytics Individual qualification, and updated the Analytics University with some great videos that form the curriculum to the exam. Matt Cutts used Twitter to promote it. The great thing is that some of the videos really ...

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24 Feb

Posted by rogerm

I read an interesting article on Twitter and Email marketing earlier today at Returnonsubscriber The gist of it was that you could track the results of an email broadcast that you effectively posted on Twitter.com. If you take the time to read the blog post per the link above you may find that whilst the outcomes could provide interesting insight the process is a little complex. I wanted to think outside the box, and I came up with an alternative method on the drive home that might be quicker and more fruitful... Let's assume that you've created your email already, and broadcast it in the normal manner. Now apply the following steps to re-purpose it on Twitter and get tracking for views with the added bonus of some macro geo-dems to boot. After all Twitter is global, and it ...

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10 Feb

Posted by rogerm

We've had a few clients ask us how best to create specific reports for areas of their site such as paid search landing pages and e-brochures separately to their main website metrics. Well in Google Analytics it's Simple! Just create a subfolder on your web server and put the content you want to track in there. Make sure it has the main website GA tracking code in place before the closing tag. Now in GA create a profile for an existing domain, and then select edit. Now use the filter option to reference only the sub-folder in question. (ie; www.yourdomain.com/ebrochure) Within 24 hours you'll have a nice clean set of reports that will let you get into the detail quickly!

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08 Feb

Posted by airtimeandy

Google have undertaken an eye-tracking study of 34 users which shows that the majority of people find what they are looking for using the top two results on the first page. The study was carried out to help with their Universal search model, but interestingly the sponsored listings only showed to the right of the search results, and their own eye tracking showed minimal user interaction. As an agency that performs PPC campaigns for a number of clients we'd be real interested to see a full eye tracking study showing the impact of sponsored listings in different positions. Of course we understand that relevancy will impact the results, and our analytical data tells us something about the CTR of different positions, but all the same it would be good to see something from Google. H...

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