Making Waves: Digital Marketing News So Far This Year

Even though we are only a few short weeks into the new year, there are already waves of news in the digital marketing world. From social media to Google, there are many changes, updates, and rollouts to look forward to in the coming months. Here is a glimpse into some of the things that have happened so far in 2015.

In-App Links

A new study from Harris Poll shows the relationship between mobile apps and mobile websites when it comes to links. eMarketer reports that mobile users are more likely to use an app instead of a website but due to in-app links, mobile users are not noticing this difference. More and more mobile users are now jumping back and forth from apps to websites with ease, specifically thanks to social media apps. The mobile users in this study also indicated that the in-app links feel more valuable than searching for content on a search engine. The apps tend to be more tailored to their interests, like Facebook or Twitter, and, for this reason, the content they see is more likely to pique their interest. More than one-fourth of the respondents said that they found new websites and articles through in-app links.

What does this mean for digital marketing?

This trend is an indication that social media is a critical aspect of any digital marketing plan. Posting content on a social media platform that links back to your website is a great way to get website clicks and brand awareness. Sponsored posts, or ads, on a social media channel is an excellent opportunity for content to reach people who wouldn't otherwise know about a particular brand. The catch, however, is that your content has to be good enough that an audience would go out of their way to read it.

Promoted Pins

If a business has yet to join Pinterest in all of its glory, now might be the time. According to Advertising Age, Pinterest has recently acquired Kosei, a startup ad tech firm in an attempt to boost it's Promoted Pins, or advertising, feature. The firm specializes in relationship and recommendation modeling that can create very personalized product recommendations. This feature allows businesses to target users based on a graph that learns the connections between products. In 2014, Pinterest began Promoted Pins as a way for companies to target consumers like many other social platforms. The company is hoping that Kosei's skills will accelerate Promoted Pins as the targeting becomes more precise and, therefore, more useful for businesses.

What does this mean for digital marketing?

Pinterest has 70 million active users, and for some brands, much of their target audience. Several large companies have already joined Pinterest's growing list of advertisers, and smaller brands can too by using Pinterest for Business. Through this tool you will get options for analytics, how to install the Pin It button, directions on how to create Rich Pins, and also a chance to sign up for Promoted Pins, which is only available to U.S.-based businesses.

Tweet Translations

Twitter has begun rolling out its new Bing Translation feature across all devices. This feature, which was previously only available on Windows Phones, offers translations in over 40 languages. It was first released on TweetDeck, and now will begin showing up for iOS, Android, and desktop users. People who encounter a Tweet in a language other than their own will see a globe icon in the top right corner of the Tweet. Clicking the globe opens a translation below the original Tweet in the language the user initially selected on Twitter. Marketing Land reports that the translations are sometimes rough, but the original Tweet is always left intact above the translation as a reference. The general idea is to give an approximation of what the Tweet was about.

What does this mean for digital marketing?

It's now easy for your brand to go worldwide. Believe it or not, not everyone speaks English. In fact, there are more people in the world that speak Mandarin and Spanish than speak English. While a brand or company may only Tweet in English, it's now possible for users in other countries, or users whose first language is not English, to read your Tweets and even start a conversation with your brand. Digital marketing opens up the world without boundaries, and Twitter just made it even easier. 

Tumblr Advertising

Blue Compass Digital Marketing | Digital Marketing NewsTumblr is a blog platform that has slowly gained ground with brands like The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon, Disney, Target Style, LIFE, and Sesame Street. There are over 221 million blogs on Tumblr full of every type of content imaginable. It uses a timeline, much like Facebook, and it's users create a blog, follow other blogs, create content, share content and re-blog other's content. The platform itself is completely customizable, and that's why it's no surprise that Tumblr is also changing the idea of platform-based advertising.

After much testing, Mashable has reported that Tumblr is launching Creatrs Network, a new form of creative advertising for brands. This network is a group of artists put together by Tumblr that creates work for advertisers to use in sponsored content on Tumblr and other social platforms, including Yahoo, the owner of Tumblr. This move forms uniquely curated content for the very specific platform. The artists are paid by Tumblr and then their work is licensed out to businesses wishing to advertise. Tumblr ensures that the artists have legal protection, a standardized rate of payment, credit to their work in the ad, and that companies are matched up with artists that would suit them best.

What does this mean for digital marketing?

This move is another chance for brands to gain trust with their audience. It also opens up a new advertising platform. User-generated content has been proven to work well for brands, and Creatrs Network will be the epitome of this type of material. Tumblr knows what works best for their users, and they are helping brands by acting as a middleman. Jumping into Tumblr as a brand takes a lot of planning, strategy and research. It's not for every brand, but this new dive into artistic advertising could convince some brands to take the risk.

"Mobile Friendly" Tags

Google has rolled out an improvement that could change the way some sites are ranked on search engine results pages (SERPS). According to Search Engine Journal, websites are now able to receive the label of "mobile friendly" next to their search results after being verified by Google's Webmaster Tools. This comes during a period of time where mobile searching is gaining ground, and it might also be a sign that mobile responsiveness could be a factor in future ranking signal algorithms. However, if a site is verified without meeting all of Google's standards, Google will send you an email with a warning that your ranking may be impacted. It will also include instructions on how to make your site mobile friendly, as well as tips for making a CMS mobile friendly. Use the "mobile-friendly" tester to find out if your site is compliant.

What does this mean for digital marketing?

Google's algorithms take a lot of things into consideration and being mobile friendly might be one of them soon. The world is changing from desktop to mobile, and it's important that brands change too. For users searching on mobile, a "mobile friendly" tag may entice them to click on your website.

While You Were Away...Blue Compass Digital Marketing | Marketing News

Twitter has released a new "While you were away..." feature that will display missed tweets since the user has last logged in. According to Marketing Land, the goal of this update is to keep users informed about what is going on in their world. Twitter is also looking ahead to a new feature called "Instant Timeline" in an attempt to get more user engagement. This feature minorly mimics Facebook's timeline, which is based on an algorithm that determines what content a user might like seeing. This, however, won't change Twitter's reverse chronological timeline or its signature real-time updates.

What does this mean for digital marketing?

Twitter's "Instant Timeline" may have an effect on what updates your followers see. This new feature will have to be examined and reported on in the future to determine how to best reach followers on Twitter.

Facebook Spam

Facebook has added a new option on their news feed in an attempt to cut down on spam. When users decide they want to report a post, they now have the option of selecting "It's a false news story" and deem that the information is fake, deceitful or a hoax according to Mashable. This new feature comes in light of scams circulating Facebook such as the fake Facebook Copyright post. There is some worry that users will use this new feature to report stories or articles that they don't like, even if the information contained within them is real.

Blue Compass Digital Marketing | Digital Marketing News

What does this mean for digital marketing?

This new feature will help remove anything spammy from your follower's feeds, but it also has the possibility to harm any content you post, especially if it's highly controversial. Overall, this addition should not have any effect on your brand's content if it's used correctly.

News happens every day, and it often comes in waves. Follow our blog to stay afloat on changes, updates and best practices in digital marketing as well as for tips on how to get the most out of your brand.


SEO, Social Media

Blue Compass logo
Blue Compass

Blue Compass is a leading team of digital experts helping brands succeed online through web design, development and digital marketing.