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Take a look at what we have been talking about

11 Jun

Posted by airtimeandy

We had a prospect enquire about our small business web design service today, and as we were exchanging emails concerning his requirements he mentioned that a lot of companies had told him they would get him to show on the first page of Google as part of the package. This kind of thing makes us cross, as we work hard to build everything to be as compliant as is practically possible and we use best practice SEO techniques during the build process. We know that for a new build to get indexed can take months, even with a sitemap.xml file and a robots.txt file in place. These companies that make promises such as this need to be more transparent about what it is they are actually offering. To be number one in say the search term plumbers is going to be impossible without a huge amoun...

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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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31 May

Posted by rogerm

We've been building a lot of client web sites recently and its prompted me to write this post to give some general advice as to what you should be thinking about before you start talking to an agency. As the downturn kicks in we've had a number of enquiries where people have baulked at the cost of bespoke web design and build, comparing our prices with others, and I think its important that we make sure prospective clients look at things on a level playing field and understand what they will actually get for their money. 1. Filter out the part time and bedroom businesses There are lots of agencies around that offer ridiculously low prices for so called professional web design. Think about how much you would expect to charge a client for the build of something like a website,...

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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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20 May

Posted by rogerm

Fellows & Sons Auctioneers in Birmingham have been a client with STAR Digital for 3 years, and we've helped them to make the transition from a largely offline business to one of the most forward thinking online companies in their vertical. They now use search and email effectively for acquisition and retention, and have recently got involved in using social media to promote and provoke discussion around their fine watch sales. So, it came as no surprise when Stephen Whittaker, managing partner, and the man with the belief and drive to push the business forwards recently asked us to get the site up and running in some European languages. Our recommendation was for cut down information pages, and that's exactly what we've done. French, Spanish, Italian and Russian pages have ...

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20 May

Posted by rogerm

Roger and James met with Paul Hutchings MD of Languageflow on Tuesday to discuss an exciting new marketing product. The meeting took place at Home House in London and looks like its going to result in a brand new product for corporates and agencies looking to produce multilingual marketing materials. Watch this space! In addition, LanguageFlow will feature heavily in the July edition of Direct Selling News as they look to consolidate their reputation in supply of fast, quality language typesetting to the direct selling market, with clients like Herbalife, Nikken and Nu-Skin using their technologies. (pictured, James left, Paul Hutchings, LanguageFlow, right)

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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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15 Feb

Posted by rogerm

Our first port of call when we have a question, http://analytics.blogspot.com/and if we really want to dig deep we reference Advanced Web Metrics with Google Analytics by Brian Clifton. You can get it from Amazon here Advanced Web Metrics with Google Analytics We also recommend checking out Web Metrics by Jim Sterne, and you can get that on the following link Web Metrics: Proven Methods for Measuring Web Site Success

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