Yes, I know I’ve been on a Google+ kick lately, but it has been it’s like Michael Corleone in Godfather 3. “Every time I think I’m out they pull me back in.”
Hopefully, I won’t have a heart attack immediately after saying the line the way that Al Pacino’s iconic character did. Also, I’m not in the mafia, in case you were wondering. I am, however, fully entrenched into Google+, which is why these stats mean something to me. Hopefully, they’ll mean something to you as well.
It’s that time of year, again. We’re going to eat a lot of different foods that we rarely eat the rest of the year and we’re going to hear a lot of predictions about the future of marketing. The future, of course, is made up of a ton of digital marketing practices. Every year, it gets bigger. Every year, there are more options.
It can actually get pretty confusing.
One of the common themes of the hodgepodge of statistics in the infographic below is that spending will continue its shift away from traditional advertising and more into digital. This trend has been happening for over a decade now and it shows no signs of slowing. The funny part is that what’s not mentioned in the graphic is any indication that traditional media such as television is shifting dramatically to include the second screen as a way to interact with content being shown on ads. This is a no-brainer, yet it seems like very few are doing it right.
Another shift is the continued growth of social media throughout the marketing spectrum. Whether through email social sharing buttons, increased spending on various social media advertising platforms, or the good ol’ content marketing practices that have been driving us all for the last couple of years, social is clearly the biggest gainer throughout 2013 and will continue to make gains (for both the social sites themselves as well as the advertisers) into 2014.
One final omission from the graphic – an emphasis on video. There’s no doubt that video is getting bigger every day. People are spending more time on it. Businesses are spending more money on it. Mastering the art of getting your message to flow and resonate on video advertisements is going to get more and more important. Faster devices. Faster internet connections. It’s a recipe for success to those who recognize it.
Here’s the graphic itself from the folks at WebDAM.
The word “ever” is a bold word. It means that you’ll never see an infographic that’s this long, this comprehensive, ever the rest of your life. Normally, I would never make such a claim about anything. Babe Ruth’s 60-homer season was never supposed to be broken, either.
However, I can say with confidence that this one will not be beaten. It’s huge. It’s so huge that I had to split it up into four parts to have the images hosted on the site, then decided to just keep it hosted on the source site because it really does need to be seen in all of its glory. Hattip to Venchito Tampon Jr from Digital Philippines for bringing this to us.
One of the hardest parts about blogging is staying consistent and pumping out enough content to keep your readers coming back for more. It’s a challenge, not just because of the time necessary to stay consistent and abundant, but also because it’s possible to run out of ideas. Don’t get me wrong – there’s not really such a thing as running out of ideas completely – but we can hit a road block and sometimes we need to get some inspiration.
Other times, all you need to do is take a look at the infographic below that will give you some examples of types of posts to help keep your juices flowing, your fingers typing, and your content bursting. This graphic comes to us through Copyblogger.
Everyone seems to love Pinterest. By everyone, I’m not talking about every person. It’s the brands, the marketing companies, and the entertainment people that find Pinterest so appealing. As far as people, women still dominate the site but men are finding their place on the picture-sharing social network as well.
In this infographic from ShareThis, we look at the various components of Pinterest that are continuously growing. Just when you thought that it might be hitting a plateau, it busts out with more amazing numbers. Click to enlarge.
There was a huge uproar in the search marketing and website design industry last year when Google came out and recommended responsive web design. While Google has been known to make recommendations in the past, they’ve never tackled this particular issue definitively until June, 2012. Since then, many companies have been scrambling to convert to a responsive design.
They reiterated the need for a mobile solution earlier this year when they said that they would soon stop showing web pages that improperly redirected to a different page when called up on mobile devices. The two pieces of news were combined because of a logical series of assumptions:
Google wants pages to render on any device
Responsive website design accomplishes the goal
Google likes responsive website design
Therefore, Google does not like adaptive website design
Everything is fine until you come to the conclusion. From a search perspective, properly coded adaptive websites with identical intents on all devices combined with proper transfer of HTML content are just as easy to rank well on Google as responsive website design.
As I researched this, I found one things that was disturbing and that needs to be addressed. The opinions most commonly expressed by companies weighing in on the debate between between responsive website design versus adaptive website design always ran parallel with the offerings of the company posting the opinion. If they offered responsive design, they said that responsive design was the only way to go. If they offered adaptive websites, they said that adaptive was the best way to go.
The unbiased publications that I read almost all came to the same conclusion – functionality of the site was much more important than the type of design used. In other words, if responsive design made it challenging for a website to function properly on mobile devices, then adaptive websites were recommended. If the flow was fine between devices and the path to turning to responsive design was an easy one, then that was the way to go.
I’m going to start with the “bias” on my end and finish this paragraph with the punchline. The bias is this: my company is developing responsive website design for our clients. The punchline is this: even with this knowledge, I still recommend adaptive for any website (including my clients’ websites) that are picture- and call-to-action-heavy on important pages such as inventory.
I have yet to see a responsive car dealer website that did not sacrifice functionality and speed for the sake of responsive design. I’ve seen both sides of the spectrum – websites that looked great and worked fine on mobile devices but that were bare-bones in their PC functionality and I’ve seen websites that looked great on a PC but that were too slow and rendered improperly on many mobile devices. I haven’t seen any that have done it “right” yet because of the nature of car dealer websites.
Most importantly, I’ve seen dealer websites that switched from adaptive to responsive that watched their website leads drop as a result. I have yet to see a single one that saw leads increase. This will change as responsive technology, internet speeds, third party plugins, and image crunching (especially for dealers that load up 30+ images on their vehicle detail pages) improves, but as of now responsive has been a huge flop.
I should also note that I jumped on the responsive bandwagon back in 2011 and strongly pushed for my company to adopt it way back then. Thankfully, we didn’t.
Final note on top of the other notes: for the majority of websites, responsive is likely the best solution. Car dealers have unique website formats. On any given page, especially the all-important vehicle details pages, there may be three or four plugins, a dozen calls-to-action, and dozens of photos that have to be brought in through 3G or 4G connections. The biggest difference between adaptive website design and responsive website design is when the changes are made to adjust for the device. On adaptive websites, the changes are server side, meaning that the data being sent is determined from the server before being sent to the device. With responsive design, the changes are client side, meaning that the whole web page is sent through and then the device is told how to piece it all together.
Here’s a very slanted infographic, one that actually does have some valid points (thankfully). Whoever built it likes adaptive and while they are being too harsh in my opinion about responsive, they still bring up some real challenges.
Call it a kick that I’m on, but I’ve officially doubled the number of “selfies” that I’ve taken just in the last couple of days. Prior to this week, I had taken 2. Now, I’ve taken 4. It’s a selfie phenomenon. The reason for all of these selfies is that I just uncovered a second infographic about the photo type that is also worth sharing, officially doubling the total posts about selfies on this blog as well. The first selfie infographic was posted just the other day with a much-less admirable attempt at my own image.
There’s a certain art to the “selfie”. It has risen from a poor way to do self-photography to the accepted method. Not sure how that happened but I’m not the biggest fan. The rise of sites like Instagram have made them a part of our social media lives.
With that said, it’s important to know the right way to make it work. The image above – that’s not a good example. It’s not stereotypical, either. Most make sure that they look good (at least having their hair brushed) and in a position to where the background is appropriate. Nobody wants to have their selfie photobombed by something they didn’t want in there.
Here’s an infographic from izzigadgets that should give you all the information that you need to perfect the art of the selfie.