As digital marketers, we strive to be constantly up-to-date on the latest happening in the online world. We have Search Engine Optimization, Pay-Per-Click Advertising, Web Design, and more covered. Staying on top of digital news is our job and not only pushes us with our ideas and strategies but ensures our clients come out on top as well. Whether it’s a new app exploding on the scene, a Google algorithm update, or the latest behavior tracking tool we’ll review, preview, and make note of it here. So if you’ve missed checking your RSS reader or your favorite sites this week no worries. New to 2016 is our what we’re listening to section full of a podcast, song, or piece that has been in our heads all week. Check it out to find out what you should be listening to regardless of topic. Come back every Friday for a new collection of our favorites and the most noteworthy pieces from the digital news sphere.

What We’re Reading for April 22nd

As Search Changes, Google Changes

The way people search is ever-changing. Google is aware of that and they’re taking a proactive approach to “staying in the game.” The days of sitting at a computer and typing a search query are virtually over. We search on the go now more than ever. We use new technologies that didn’t exist just a few years ago. How will digital advertising – one of Google’s top sources of revenue – adapt? This is something that Google is working on and more importantly, something that agencies and advertisers need to be aware of and act on now. (Contributed by Paid Search Specialist Kevin Koehn)

Facebook Looking at Time Spent on Third Party Pages

We know that Facebook accounts for how long users spend looking at posts in their feeds when deciding which posts to show. Now, Facebook is considering how long users spend on third-party sites that those posts link to. In other words, clickbait won’t work. Facebook has also come up with ways to prevent third party publishers from gaming the system, including a maximum threshold of time on site. And, time-spent will only start once the page is fully loaded. Marketing Land also reports that Facebook is focusing on the variety of content and sources in users’ feeds, to ensure they’re not heading to Twitter or Snapchat instead. (Contributed by Online PR Specialist Ellen Borza)

How Long Does Link Building Take to Affect Rankings?

Being a digital marketing agency that does a great deal of Content Marketing, we get asked this question quite often. This analysis is spot on and actually comes close to matching what our internal data suggests. Moral of the story for brands and those looking to content marketing to drive growth is that it is an investment. Google is slow, strong links take time, but the success is long lasting. (Contributed by Director of Search Marketing Justin Emig)

The Disturbing Influence of Glassdoor

This fascinating article talks about how all companies should spend time building their employer brands. Companies need to pay attention to Glassdoor. There are many decisions being influenced by ratings and it makes sense that jobs are part of this as well. 1/3rd of all people will leave negative reviews about a company when leaving and therefore Glassdoor is negatively biased so keeping track of what is happening on it is important. (Contributed by Vice President Matt Self)

Snapchat Adds Even More Face Swap Options

Snapchat is changing the face of social media–literally. After just getting used to the option to face swap with another person in the frame, the latest update is now allowing you to face swap with photos from your gallery. While this might seem like just another fun way to connect with friends, it’s also showing the potential Snapchat has for innovation. Keep an eye out for further updates and continue engaging with the platform, especially if teens are part of your target demographic as Snapchat has surpassed Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook as the preferred network. (Contributed by Online PR Specialist Sarah Walsh)

2 Google Ad Updates for Local Marketers

Ads are now showing in the Local Finder results. After performing a local search, and clicking “more places” after the local 3-pack, ads can now be seen making it possible for a business to increase “first page” exposure, should a searcher click through to see more listings. Google is also changing the way ads are being displayed in Google Maps. Soon, the only way an ad will show on Maps is if they include local extensions; regular text ads will no longer be shown. Additionally, Google Maps is no longer considered a Search Partner. This means that advertisers that use local extensions but opted out of Search Partners, will now have their ads shown on Maps, increasing impressions and clicks. Conversely, those not using local ad extensions that were opted in for Search Partners could see their metrics drop as their ads will no longer show on Maps.  (Contributed by Sr. Client Strategist Jason Hershey)

Brands Get it Wrong with Tweets About Prince

Some were tasteful, others not so much. Thursday the iconic artist Prince passed away and brands were quick to tweet their condolences. Several of these did not go over so well while others seemed genuine. Cheerios was quick to pull their tweet as it was basically an ad for their product. Many brands like Caribou Coffee (especially those Minnesota based where Prince grew up and resided), kept it simple with just a blank purple image. The lessons are a good reminder for any brand to check and double check if your message will get across before hitting tweet. (Contributed by Online PR Specialist Anna Horn)

Pinterest Reinvents Itself to Prove It’s Really Worth Billions

Pinterest just finished an engineering and design overhaul in an effort to make the platform easier to use. In addition to this, the article concludes that the easier Pinterest is to use, the more time individuals will spend browsing in the platform. This will be helpful for the brands that invest advertising dollars in Pinterest by running Promoted Pins. (Contributed by Online PR Specialist Erica Brandt)

Better In-Store Attribution is Here

Although “showrooming” (the phenomenon where people visit a store to test a product before buying it online) is on the rise, it is important to note that this behavior can flow both ways. Google is constantly looking for ways to track people who click or see an ad, then make an in store visit and purchase. Google is currently testing in-store visits as a conversion with certain big retailers. This conversion type uses a combination of wifi and GPS location to monitor if people who clicked an ad eventually head in store. At some point in the future we expect that this conversion type will be available to all advertisers. (Contributed by Paid Search Specialist Bill Hartz)

Google “Near Me” Searches for Multi-Location Businesses

The nearby feature on iPhone and Google are becoming increasingly popular. What is better than searching for “pizza near me” to find a plethora of pizza joints nearby? The search may be difficult for multi-location business within the same region depending on how the stores pages’ rank. The “near me” search takes into account that distance is important for the searcher. To take advantage of the “near me” search make sure each business location is up to date with address and phone number. Also make sure Google My Business is properly set up and optimized. (Contributed by Online PR Specialist Michelle Arnold)

How to Check if You’ve Screwed Up Your AdWords Account

Eventually everyone makes a mistake managing an AdWords accounts that can cost money or tank performance. Here is an AdWords script that will check for some of the most common AdWords mistakes. This Script is especially handy when setting up new accounts or when auditing inherited accounts. (Contributed by Digital Campaign Lead Jasper Burwell)

What We’re Listening To

Raspberry Beret by Prince

Not honoring the late icons death this week with our what we’re listening to would be wrong so we’ve chosen one of Ellen’s favorite tracks from the Minnesota born singer. Prince was an avid spokesman for artists having completely control over their catalog and thus his music is only available on Tidal. But never fear the Current (a MN local radio station is streaming his catalog for the next few days). (Contributed by Online PR Specialist Anna Horn)

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