Our Favorite Online Marketing Posts of 2013

Favorite Posts of 2013Wow! It’s hard to believe that 2013 is coming to a close. It’s been a fast but fantastic year here at KoMarketing as we’ve welcomed new employees, travelled across the US and China, and moved to a new location in downtown Boston. We’ve also been very fortunate to have amazing clients, partners, and industry friends that we’re so thankful for.

As the year draws to a close and we reflect on all the things we’ve done this year, it’s also nice to look back at all the things we’ve learned. After all, it’s been a crazy year of updates from both search engines and social networks, and 2014 promises to bring more of the same.

Before we have to start thinking about that though, let’s take a look at some of our favorite online marketing posts from 2013, as selected by members of the KoMarketing team.

Ryan Young (Content Marketing Strategist)

March Madness is one of the most exciting times on the sports calendar and this post is a great example of how to compare content marketing to real-world events. The six steps in this post not only offer a great content blueprint, but tying it to college basketball makes it a very fun read.

ROI questions affect nearly every aspect of business, and content marketing is no exception. This post provides some KPIs to keep in mind when measuring content’s impact on the bottom line.

I’ve been asked countless times what it means to be part of a content marketing team. This post would be extremely helpful in answering those questions as 40 industry professionals offer up brief “What is Content” descriptions.

Who doesn’t love stats? This post collects 50 great stats from around the web that make a case for content marketing and shows growth trends within the industry.

You can see more of the posts, articles, and information Ryan likes on Twitter, LinkedIn, and read his blog posts here.

Dennis Cohen (SEO Analyst)

While not nearly as talented as Rachel Veznaian, I used to be a social media manager at my previous job. This article really hit home – not everyone can be a social media pro!

A great study which polled 120 well-known SEO professionals and asked them about search ranking factors. Looking back at this article, many of their predictions including Google Authorship, structured data and Google+ are spot on. These guys are legit!

I used to think that Google+ was a complete waste of time, and it would eventually fade away – but I couldn’t have been more wrong. This post highlights how absolutely critical Google+ is to Google search, and it seems like it’s only going to grow more important from here.

You can see more of the posts, articles, and information Dennis likes on Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and read his blog posts here.

Mike Pickowicz (PPC/SEM Analyst)

  • Five Strategy Changes To Help You Cope with Google’s Ad Rank ChangeKevin Lee, ClickZ

Google made a huge change to the way its quality score is calculated in 2013. I liked this blog post because it goes into important strategies to make sure your ad retains a high ad position.

This was Google’s blog post in regards to the launch of “Enhanced Campaigns”, which was one of the biggest changes to AdWords in 2013. This post does a great job describing some of the changes being made and providing detailed, real-world, examples for each.

I used to think that Google+ was a complete waste of time, and it would eventually fade away – but I couldn’t have been more wrong. This post highlights how absolutely critical Google+ is to Google search, and it seems like it’s only going to grow more important from here.

Connect with Mike on Google+ and LinkedIn.

Stacy Thompson (Senior Content Marketing Writer)

A big part of being a writer involves coming up with things to write about. It’s a lot harder than it sounds. In this article, B2C outlines 42 ways content marketers can clear their heads and focus on the task at hand, including stepping away from the computer, writing until you’re “unstuck,” changing your writing location, and more.

Creating successful content isn’t about playing it safe. In fact, Unbounce writes that controversial content can stir up a debate that readers feel strongly about (strongly enough to leave their opinion in a blog’s comments section and/or share the piece via social media). For B2B marketers, this doesn’t mean targeting hot-button issues (i.e., religion or politics) but rather tackling a few topics that are being talked about in blogs or forums or on social media.

As Copyblogger notes, it’s crucial that you write and use stories in your content marketing efforts as a way to differentiate yourself from the mass of mediocre media publishers out there. So what does this mean? Make sure your content includes basic storytelling elements: drama, suspense, lessons learned, etc. Doing so can capture your readers’ attention enough to keep them coming back for more. Case in point: Cinderella!

Everyone loves BuzzFeed (or loves to hate it, as Lisa Barone argues). Whether you’re pulled in by BuzzFeed’s off-the-wall headlines, you’re caught by a completely weird topic that makes an article worthy of reading, or you just really want to look at baby animals during your lunch break, BuzzFeed’s got something all content marketers can learn from. In this article, Lisa Barone outlines what, exactly, that is by offering concrete examples and actionable tips. It’s a fun, funny, and informative way to spend 5 minutes (and probably get lured back to BuzzFeed).

You can see more of the posts, articles, and information Stacy likes on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+ and read her blog posts here.

Lena Xu (Digital Marketing Strategist)

  • Baidu Search Engine Optimization GuideSEOChat

This articles targets one of my favorite aspects of the Baidu search engine and it introduces us some specific guidelines for Baidu SEO.

I’m really interested in mobile SEO and this post showcases mobile search trends along with offering some useful strategies.

“Black Friday” is an interesting topic to me. I love this post because it gave us some great tips about how to create “Black Friday” campaigns for paid search.

Connect with Lena on Google+ and LinkedIn.

Derek Edmond (Director of Internet Marketing Strategy)

It was tough to choose only 5 but I tried to base these off of articles and information that helped shape strategies and ways I might discuss recommendations with others, as well as guide my own personal and organizational marketing initiatives.

What made this article significant for me is in the mainstream coverage of Google’s strategy with Google+. SEO’s have been preaching Google+ significance for quite some time and it was a pretty big deal when the WSJ decided to cover this as well.

This article talks about the new expectation that marketers and advertisers have in reaching their audiences and the fundamental shifts in operations these organizations must make

A really creative way to learn how to build a story (or any piece of content designed to attract a target audience) from such a creative organization / company

Maybe a content marketer doesn’t need all 50 of these skills but this is certainly a comprehensive list to benchmark one’s own professional development against.

Well thought out and orchestrated post on how search marketers need to think about more than just rank but in providing greater value and impact when they do gain visibility (and clicks).

And a couple really solid curated lists of resources worth mentioning:

You can see more of the posts, articles, and information Derek likes on Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and read his blog posts here.

Casie Gillette (Director of Online Marketing)

It was obviously a big year for Google+ and for everyone who was wondering what the true impact of it was on search results, Eric Enge took it upon himself to find out. The results weren’t exactly what I expected but they were interesting and the post is definitely worth a read. He also just released a new study on how Facebook impacts search. Check it out!

Getting your team to blog can be difficult but this year at PubCon, Monique Pouget presented on how to motivate them. Not only is the overall presentation great but she included a ton of valuable feedback from other online marketers. Great tips!

Screaming Frog has become my “go to” tool over the past few years and this post outlines why…there’s so much you can do with it! From technical SEO to link building, content creation, and everything in between, Screaming Frog can help. Solid list of ideas and how to’s.

When it comes to link building, Julie Joyce is one of the absolute best people to follow. In this Search Engine Land post she outlines 50 things link builders need to know. While some items on the list are pretty basic, they are are spot on. Do you know if your link works on a mobile device? Time to find out!

I went to my first Distilled event a few years ago here in Boston and it was fantastic. There were so many great speakers and amazing takeaways that I couldn’t even try to write everything down. That’s why it’s so impressive that Kath Dawson did at this year’s LinkLove. The post will take you a while to get through but it’s guaranteed to inspire new ideas.

There are so many other posts I would love to add but the list is already long enough! See what other content I’m sharing on Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn.

I hope you all have an absolutely wonderful holiday and even better new year. Cheers to 2013!

“Working with KoMarketing was more like a partnership as supposed to just another consulting project. We learned a lot from KoMarketing, while excelling in all aspects of SEO for our website. If your looking for a hard working, dedicated team, KoMarketing is a partnership you won’t regret.”

— Alexis Karlin, Digital Marketing Specialist, Neolane (Acquired by Adobe)

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