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Best Chrome Extensions for Digital Marketing

Best Chrome Extensions for Digital Marketing

Google Chrome is one of the best browsers out there, not only because it’s fast, but because it has a library full of browser extensions to help you with everything from a to z. If you’re looking for tools to make your life easier, these extensions will be right up your alley.

Google Tag Assistant

If you’ve played around with Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager enough, you know that sometimes it can be challenging to get things to work just the way you want them to. With the click of a button this extension will tell if ANY website has GA or GTM set up correctly.

Also see the Facebook pixel helper, which does the same thing, except for Facebook…obviously.

Colorzilla

Have you ever needed the exact color of something from your website, or any website for that matter. Sure, you could view the source code and track it down, but using this extension is way easier. Simply point and click to get the exact color of anything with the eyedropper tool. Great for all you aspiring graphic designers killing it in Canva, or you email marketers who just need the right color for the header.

Keyword Everywhere

Even though it’s not totally free anymore, it is still a fantastic extension.

The Keywords Everywhere browser add-on can be easily installed on either Chrome or Firefox. The best part is that we show you monthly search volume, cost per click and competition data of keywords on multiple websites.

keywordeverywhere.com

Bit.ly

Shorten your links without leaving the current browser window. Talk about SHORTcuts!

Google Analytics Opt-Out

Hate internal traffic, but don’t feel like configuring the ip address in Google Analytics. Download this extension and simply click to opt-out of being tracked by Google Analytics. Great for testing things without polluting your traffic.

MozBar, SEOQuake, aHrefs Toolbar

All fantastic choices if you’re looking to easily take a peek under the SEO hood of any website. Great for quick snapshots of competitor SEO efforts.

What are some of your favorites? Let me know in the comments!

 

Top Questions About Digital Marketing

Top Questions About Digital Marketing

Using one of my favorite SEO tools, aHrefs Keyword Explorer, let’s take a look at some of the top ‘question’ keywords for digital marketing.

What is digital marketing?

It is how businesses communicate with their customers in an always connected world. Sure, businesses still use old school techniques like direct mail, billboards and newspaper ads, but now they also use: display advertising, social media, SEO, PPC, podcasting, email marketing, content marketing, automation, sms, and a host of other tactics.

At a high level, digital marketing refers to advertising delivered through digital channels such as search engines, websites, social media, email, and mobile apps. Read more….

-Marketo

What is a digital marketing strategy?

In its simplest form, how a business plans to reach its goals through various forms of digital marketing. Hubspot has a great post on this, and even offers a free guide. Add that to your bookmarks now.

Why it’s important?

The internet. Today, we are all plugged in 24/7. Hell, a lot of us have access to high speed internet right in our pockets. The internet truly has changed the game. Newspapers are a dying breed, but subscription model publications are taking their place. The radio? More like podcasts. Nearly everything has a bigger and better digital equivalent these days thanks to the internet. Sales managers will tell you “if it’s not in salesforce, it didn’t happen.” I say, “if you’re a business, and you don’t have an online presence, you don’t exist.”

How to learn?

There are many different ways to learn digital marketing today. I believe the best way to learn is by doing. Get out there and make some mistakes, get your hands dirty. Check out all the other ways you can learn digital marketing here.

Photo by JR Korpa on Unsplash

How to Learn Digital Marketing

How to Learn Digital Marketing

If you’re interested in digital marketing there are plenty of ways to learn the tools of the trade. There are countless digital marketing courses online, dedicated programs at university, groups, blogs, slack channels and more! With so many choices it can be hard to know where to start. Digital Marketing is a multi-faceted industry and it is constantly evolving. If you’re just getting started, check out my post on the six skills for 2020 to help you select a topic. Once you have your north star, come back and get learning!

1. Experience

The best way to learn digital marketing is to get some experience. As of this writing, there are one thousand plus internships on Indeed. If an internship isn’t your style, head over to LinkedIn and check out the bevy of entry level roles they have (11k in the US as of this post). Experience is and always will be king in terms of learning. You get to see things put into practice and you get to learn from your mistakes.

2. Higher Education and Certificates

While plenty of universities have marketing undergrad programs, the move to solely digital marketing hasn’t been so widespread at least in the undergrad arena. There are plenty of Masters programs that are digital marketing focused (shout out Temple University for the Masters in Digital Innovation in Marketing). In addition to seeking out a masters, you can always go the certificate route. Search Engine Journal (SEJ) did a great roundup of the top certificates in digital marketing here.

3. Online Education

I should probably write a post on all of the different platforms in the online education space. To keep this short, I will say that The Next Web often runs great deals on course packs. They are usually hosted at Stackskills. One of my favorites on StackSkills is “The Complete Digital Marketing Course, Darragh Walsh.” You can also check out the multitude of courses offered on Udemy. You can also find nearly any how to ______ in digital marketing on YouTube.

4. Read

The digital marketing industry is always evolving. The best way to stay on top of the trends is to read. Books, blogs, magazines. Don’t Make Me Think, Steve Krug, is one of the best web usability books. They Ask, You Answer, Marcus Sherdian, is another great read. There are plenty of digital marketing blogs out there. Kuno Creative laid out 33 of the top choices to help get your bookmarks started.

5. Listen

Podcasts are the trending platform in 2020. Whether you listen on Apple Podcasts (don’t its a bad app), Spotify, Overcast, Stitcher, so on and so forth, there are endless options in the digital marketing space. One of my favorites is Marketing School with Eric Siu and Neil Patel. It’s bite sized and great for discovering new tools, and generating quick ideas to get your day started. Check out some of my other favorites here.

BONUS: Reddit is a great resource. Check out this awesome site: https://lookingformarketing.com/resources/on/getting-started-with-digital-marketing/

Photo by JR Korpa on Unsplash

6 Digital Marketing Skills to Master in 2020

6 Digital Marketing Skills to Master in 2020

In 2015 I wrote about some necessary skills for marketing. Three of those skills appear on this list as well. Some things in digital marketing don’t change over time, they just evolve. To keep up with the industry, here are 6 skills that I think you should master.

CRM – Customer Relationship Management

It is essential as a marketer that you know how to reach your target audience. In that sense, 2020 is an exciting time to be alive. There are endless tools that can help you reach your customers and prospects. Be sure that you have experience in at least one of these tools. Key in on email marketing, building customer journeys, lead routing and contact management. Hubspot gives a great primer on CRMs here.

Google

Knowing how to use Google isn’t going to cut it when it comes to being a digital marketer.

The internet is Google’s world, we are all just using it. 90% of all web searches happen on Google (Collins 2020). I’ll let that number sink in……..

As a Digital Marketer you need to know how to play nice with Google. These are the key areas you should focus on:

  • Google Ads – pay to be on the top of the SERPs (Search Engine Ranking Pages)
  • Google Analytics – the metrics and dimensions under the hood of your website
  • Google My Business – local seo
  • Google Tag Manager – enhanced event/click tracking

Coding

Don’t worry, you don’t have to be the next Bill Gates, but HTML and CSS are table stakes. Websites are built on them, emails are built on them. Your digital marketing career could solely focus on one of those two areas if you become an amazing coder.

Suppose you are building an email with your Email Service Provider (ESP). The deadline is approaching and you cannot get an image to appear correctly. You have two options here: call your provider, and be charged for help or figure it out yourself. If you know HTML and CSS figuring it out yourself won’t be so daunting.

If you want to get started, W3Schools is a fantastic resource, as is the Odin Project. There are plenty of other programming languages that you could learn like JavaScript, Python, Ruby on Rails….the list goes on and on. Feel free to explore those once you are done with HTML and CSS.

CMS – Content Management

You have a website, right? If you don’t stop reading and go set one up.

A content management system allows you to, well, manage content on a website. WordPress is a CMS. You could build your website from scratch and manage it yourself with your newly acquired HTML and CSS knowledge, but that isn’t really practical in terms of being a digital marketer. You need a tool that will make it easier for you and your coworkers to manage content on the site at the same time, without fussing too much with code. That is what a CMS does.

“When a company uses a CMS to publish its pages, it reduces its reliance on front-end engineers to make changes to the website, making it quicker and easier to publish new content.” (Optimizely Glossary). Read more about CMS in this Optimizely post.

SEO

Ever wonder how something ends up on the first page of Google? Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is how. This post from Search Ending Land defines SEO as “the process of getting traffic from the “free,” “organic,” “editorial” or “natural” search results on search engines.” In short, it’s getting your site/page on Google or Bing without paying for a spot.

What is SEO in digital marketing?

  • Effectively optimize website content for keywords
  • Generate new topics for blog or thought leadership
  • Ensure websites are complying with Google recommendations
  • Enhance the local impact of your business through local SEO (Hardwick 2019)

Social Media

You probably have 3 or four social media accounts. Aren’t they great for connecting with your friends?! Similar logic applies for connecting your business with customers. One of the big advantages of social media is that potential customers are pretty open about sharing information about themselves on such a public forum. This makes it a little bit easier to target and connect with them. Obviously you want to have a moral compass and not invade people’s privacy, but social media can be a great tool to help further your business.

Here is a great example of how to use social media. As a huge Philadelphia Flyers fan, I am always looking for new gear to sport my orange and black. The team happened to wear custom Nike Air Jordans on a preseason special (seen below) and I really wanted a pair.

Unfortunately, the Nike site doesn’t list sizes smaller than 11 (I’m a 10). So I tweeted at Nike.

Within an hour, the brand had responded to my tweet.

Shout out to Nike and Shiekh.

I felt amazing after that interaction. Nike actually cared about what I wanted and gave me an option to get it. While this is a really small example, I think it perfectly illustrates how to reach out to customers and not only make them feel good, but give them what they want. Here is a great primer on social media marketing from Wordstream.

Mastering these six skills will make you a better digital marketer. Will you have to do all of them every day? Probably not. You may even find that your company outsources some of these things, which is fine. Knowing these things can help you manage those relationships better and make more informed decisions about your business.

Photo by Joanna Kosinska on Unsplash


References

Content Management System. https://www.optimizely.com/optimization-glossary/content-management-system/. Accessed 22 Mar. 2020.

“Google + Amazon: Data on Market Share, Trends, Searches from Jumpshot.” Search Engine Watch, 1 Aug. 2019, https://www.searchenginewatch.com/2019/08/01/amazon-google-market-share/.

Hardwick, Joshua. “Local SEO: A Simple (But Complete) Guide.” SEO Blog by Ahrefs, 13 July 2018, https://ahrefs.com/blog/local-seo/.

HubSpot. What Is a CRM? https://www.hubspot.com/growth-stack/what-is-crm. Accessed 22 Mar. 2020.

“Nike. Just Do It.” Nike.Com, https://www.nike.com/. Accessed 22 Mar. 2020.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Starter Guide – Search Console Help. https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/7451184?hl=en. Accessed 22 Mar. 2020.

Social Media Marketing for Businesses | WordStream. https://www.wordstream.com/social-media-marketing. Accessed 22 Mar. 2020.

W3Schools Online Web Tutorials. https://www.w3schools.com/. Accessed 22 Mar. 2020.

“What Is SEO / Search Engine Optimization?” Search Engine Land, https://searchengineland.com/guide/what-is-seo. Accessed 22 Mar. 2020.

Your Career in Web Development Starts Here | The Odin Project. https://www.theodinproject.com/. Accessed 22 Mar. 2020.

How I Ended Up in Digital Marketing

How I Ended Up in Digital Marketing

It happened by accident. Nearly a decade after graduating with a food marketing degree, I am now a digital marketing professional. I always had an interest in all things tech, which has greatly helped me as I’ve settled into this profession. 

It was May 2011: graduation behind me, summer ahead. I had earned a BS in Business Administration and was working as a manager at Wawa with my eyes set on Corporate. Unfortunately that never came to fruition. Frustrated with retail, I sought other opportunities. I finally began my career in 2013 landing a job with a law firm as a marketing assistant. 

The firm was small, as was the marketing team which consisted of me and my boss. This environment afforded me a hands on learning experience like no other. I got exposure to a little of everything: website management, email marketing, brochure creation, events, survey management. Doing a little bit of everything allowed me to discover what I really liked. I could spend hours in dreamweaver and our CMS just fiddling with things. The web became a love of mine. 

Eventually I moved to a firm in the city, where once again the web was at the forefront of my role. Upon my arrival, the firm’s website was not mobile friendly. I took the initiative and scoured the code for a solution. After a couple rounds of tinkering, I was able to provide a solution. My superiors noticed my tech savvy and rewarded me further opportunities to work on technology projects. After nearly 4 years at the firm, I left a Digital Marketing Specialist. I contributed to the firms data management, co-owned management of the website and CMS, managed the firm podcast and webinars, contributed to email marketing and many others. 

After nearly 6 years in the legal industry, I wanted to expand my horizons. I worked as a Digital Marketing Specialist at a real estate services company, before becoming a Marketing Technology Manager at a staffing company. 

Today, I wear many hats, as all digital marketers should. Certainly there are specialties, but a good digital marketer knows how to do a little bit of everything effectively. 

What are your specialties? I’d love to hear your story. Share in the comments below!

Photo by Diggity Marketing on Unsplash

Necessary Skills for Marketing

Necessary Skills for Marketing

Technology has changed a lot of things in our lives. It’s made our personal lives easier and our business lives more organized. With all that change comes a new set of skills to learn.

Marketers today need to know how to perform across a variety of mediums. From print to social and beyond marketers are really becoming jacks-of-all-trades. Here are a few of the necessary skills for marketing today: (more…)