Last week at the IABC luncheon in Regina, Adam Green, Agency Lead for Google Canada, spoke to us about online marketing. When Google speaks, it's worth listening. Adam covered a lot of ground in an hour, but the highlights for me were think mobile, social and local.
If you're building your marketing strategy, the future is a mobile web. And social media should not be ancillary to your online marketing strategy.
Adam pointed out how fast the web has grown and is continuing to grow, "When Google was founded in 1998 about 2% of the world's population had Internet access. Today, 1 in 4 have access. That's the same amount that own TVs. And that's a huge shift."
Which led to the question, "Have you changed what you are doing?"
Adam explained Google's concept of the Zero Moment of Truth
. You may have heard of "the first moment of truth", a Procter & Gamble term to describe the moment when we stand at the store shelf and choose between all the brands before us. The moment is so important, Procter & Gamble invests millions researching displays and packaging.
Google's Zero Moment of Truth, suggests an equally (perhaps even more) important moment, before we go to the store - when we search for deals or product information online. The importance of that moment is substantiated with a study showing 83% of us have made up our mind before we even enter the store. So as Adam said "if you're not online, you've already lost the battle."
Which leads to the importance of social media and mobile marketing. Social Media, not only helps your search results, but it also affects the moment of truth. Following a purchase, social media gives us the opportunity to share our opinions, and because of social integration like the Facebook Like button, and Google's +1, one person's online review becomes another person's Zero Moment of Truth.
Google, like Facebook, has moved into opening the social graph, so that recommendations to your social media network move outside of your Facebook wall or Google circle. Social is going to appear in everything we do online. The Google +1 and the Facebook Like button put your social recommendations in search, in ads, and on shopping websites. And these recommendations don't just happen once, They stay there. They are persistent.
"This is the way things are going, you can't segment it off. It's going to inform everythingevery ad that you buy online is going to be socially enabled."
Listening to Adam it becomes clear that an integrated marketing strategy must include a social marketing strategy. But perhaps equally or even more important, we need to think of mobile marketing. Adam noted that today, 30% of Canadians have smart phones, Google predicts by 2014, 50% of us will have smart phones. Mobile marketing is the future.
Google co-founder and CEO Larry Page has dictated to his teamthink of mobile first. "This should be informing everything you do. Develop for the web, the mobile web first. This is actually the ethos of every product we bring out."
If Google is focusing on mobile and mobile marketing, then it makes sense for the rest of us to follow.
Adam recommended that we track mobile separately Use specific web analytics for your mobile site. "When you're developing your mobile marketing strategy, remember that most of our interactions with a mobile device has some local intent. 30% of all searches on smart phones have local intent."
By that he means most people are looking for an immediate, local answer. Whats' the best restaurant? Where's the closest coffee shop? Another good reason to have separate web analytics for mobileso you can track who is coming to your mobile site. "It's important to get out there and make mistakes. The best gift the Internet gave anyone is the ability to fail fast and learn."
It was excellent to hear from Google, and we were left with some treats. After all, what would a Google talk be without some web analytics? Adam pointed to several free Google tools for web analytics. These are free tools, so why not try them. As Adam said, not using using web analytics would be like opening a store and not watching what your customers are doing while they shop.
Google Keyword Tool
: This is fun, it shows a list of related search counts and advertiser competition.
Google Insights for Search
: Compare search volume patterns across specific regions, categories, time frames and properties.
: To help you find relevant sites for your advertising
YouTube Insights for audience
: "The biggest focus group in the world. You can find out what videos that audience is watching right away."
If you have questions - you'll have to search for Adam, he didn't leave us his Twitter!