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SEO is becoming less and less effective. Half-naked influencers from Instagram charge $500 for a post and you do not know why. The cost of advertising significantly lowers profitability of a campaign. So what should we do in order to sell online?
Recently, we have come across an interesting presentation by Rand Fishkin, president and founder of SparkToro. The company deals with Internet analytics and explores how websites, blogs, podcasts or social media accounts reach their recipients with commercial purposes to sell a product.
The presentation entitled "The next era of Web Marketing" states that in the years 2009-2016 the following steps were necessary in Internet marketing:
It doesn't work like that anymore. Everything has changed! Keywords don't drive such traffic as they used to! It is not all about "Good content" any more. Fewer followers see your posts and influencers let you down. Additionally, advertising cost soared and ROI, i.e. return on investment, profitability and economic viability of such activities, well, has declined, as Rand Frishkin remarked.
And he is 100% right. Well, maybe 90% right, because we do not agree that good content is not sufficient. Good content is all you need! But about that later.
Do you know what amused us about this presentation?
"In 2012, a following definition of influencer-based marketing held true: identify all sources that affect your potential audience and market yourself there.
In 2018, the definition changed to: pay half-naked Instagram people $500 for a picture of your product.”
When we read this, we realised that this was exactly what was happening not only with influencers in social media but with the entire online marketing! The companies in the interactive industry compete in going to great lengths but nobody really thinks about the effectiveness of their actions. Can the Entrepreneur who bears all the costs make a profit from it? That's a good question....
What should we do regarding the presentation that is making inroads into our industry? From this document we found out that the marketers' crafty plan for the upcoming years is as follows:
Instead of opting for keywords and SEO positioning, an entire marketing plan should be created on your own website. Your website should become a centre of your digital marketing campaigns. It's an obsolete and old-fashioned approach. But it is the only effective way.
INFORMATION DESIRED subscribes to this idea.
However, in our opinion, the remaining pieces of advice and forecast about the future of Internet marketing after 2019 focus on the same tools that have already failed.
We need a revolution, not a mere change in Internet marketing. We need to come back to the roots.
Waving a magic wand in the hope that the old tools would still work is over. They won't work. It's time to go back to the roots. It's time to concentrate on useful information that attracts Internet users, build up their trust and, eventually, can effectively sell your products or services. It's time to focus on the information your customers want.
And it's time to stop having your leg pulled! You have the right to pay for the effects of Internet marketing—for attracting your customers, and not for the tools that might or might not guarantee it. It's time to end the festival of empty promises.
It will be interesting to see when the rest of the market understands it and starts treating their customers in the same way as INFORMATION DESIRED treats its Investees today.