Welcome to the Baltzer Marketing roundup of some the the articles we’ve found most useful recently. We hope you find them helpful and educational!
This article is about how to write and assign the perfect task. As a manager (or with yourself), it’s important to assign properly written tasks. Otherwise, the recipient can become overwhelmed or confused. A well written task includes four elements: step, details, deadlines, and context.
For me, the big takeaway is that a task should be a single, distinct step. Sometimes it’s tempting to create a vague task that actually consist of multiple steps. You may do this because you’re in a hurry, and writing out a good task actually requires a bit of time and thought.
It’s important to get clear about what needs to be done and what the steps are to get there. But this thinking process is half the battle! If you get lazy or rushed you’re either going to confuse the assignee, or you yourself will be confused because the subject matter won’t be fresh on your mind when you come back to it. So, investing the time to create a good task while it’s fresh on your mind can eliminate a huge amount of wasted time when you look at the big picture and how many tasks you go through each day.
This post is written for the lean startup world, but the concepts are mostly transferable to any marketing initiative (with perhaps a bit of adjustment).
We are constantly experimenting in marketing. Every time you try a new strategy or tactic you are experimenting. The question is, are your experiments good? We are all susceptible to cognitive bias. If we don’t set up our experiments properly, we are prone to “post-experiment rationalization”. In business, we don’t have time to set up experiments with the precision of a clinical trial. But if you internalize the following 7 habits, you can be a good experimenter.
- Declare expected outcomes upfront
- Make declaring outcomes a team sport
- Emphasize ranges, not precision
- Measure actions vs. words (or in our case, numbers)
- Turn your assumptions into falsifiable hypotheses
- Timebox your experiments
- Always use a control group
So how do you remember all of this? Use a process! Ash Maurya includes an Experiment Report in the linked article, and you could use it as a starting point to create an experiment template to fit your particular needs. I know I will!
Excel is a not-so-secret weapon for PPC and SEO management. So it pays to take the time to learn the ins and outs of it. This article by Justin Wade at Add3 (my old stomping grounds) lays out some of the most useful shortcuts to use in Excel. Learn the ones you don’t already know now! It’s an investment that will pay compound interest for as long as you’re managing digital marketing campaigns! There’s also a Part II which deals with Excel Formulas. Check it out!
From the AdWords blog…
The Google display network has some nifty new features! My favorite is the new Audience Insights report that gives us demographic and psychographic information about the people on our remarketing lists. For instance, you may find from the report that 80% of your visitors are “Shutterbugs” compared to 39% of the general population (like I did for one of my clients… and it’s seems so random!) Based on this you could experiment with targeting ads towards the “Shutterbugs” affinity audience.
In other developments, the Google Display Network is going 100% viewable. That means if you are paying for display ads on a CPM basis, you will no longer be paying for ads that are below the fold and therefore non-viewable. Makes total sense right?
AdWords is also making improvements to dynamic remarketing ads. These ads will now be reshaped and resized according to the size of the screen. They will even experiment with the colors of the ads to see what gets the best results. Cool.
Well, that’s it for this addition of the Baltzer Marketing roundup. Until next time, ¡Adiós amigos!