Media Monday 2nd Edition: Almost Didn’t Do It

By Whitney Blessington | August 5th, 2013

SEO | Social Media

Wow. It’s lunchtime and I still haven’t blogged yet. Screw it, I’m not taking lunch. Sorry, that’s how dedicated you have to be to this small business SEO strategy, I guess. Well, it’s not just for small businesses – it’s also for those that need to justify all marketing expenses and get the most possible return on next to zero investment – oh wait, that’s all of us!

So today, I’m just picking a topic – any topic – and I’m having a take on it. Seriously. This is what you need to use your SEO workbook for. You do remember “the SEO workbook” from last week, don’t you? Don’t worry, if you haven’t started yours yet, we can help you! Anyway, here goes – this week’s digital marketing topic is the new Gmail Inbox and how it separates out your emails from Primary to Social to Promotions.

1. Use this as an opportunity to qualify your audience and clean out your lists. A lot of hub-bub was thrown around in the digital marketing world a few weeks ago when this launched. MailChimp wisely jumped first, talking about how this affects open rates. Obviously, MailChimp has some serious skin in the game here, but still put out a good piece on their blog about open rate data, and tips for avoiding the promotions tab. This means, marketers are trying to stay out of having their e-mail blasts showing up in someone’s promotions tab, and instead bypassing it and going to their new primary tab, where they’ll see it first. Luckily, MailChimp updated this post on August 1, saying nobody had found a way yet.

My response to this is simple. As a marketer, use some common sense. Email has become quite a chore – mainly because of marketers. So think about how you have to “clean out your inbox” – well, now gmail does it for you. My point – the promotions tab is not a bad thing. It’s a good thing for both users and marketers.

Nashville Interactive Agency

So what if your open rates go down? Unopened email – to the user – is a freaking chore. People opening your email doesn’t mean they’re really interested in what you have to say or offer. It may just mean they’re cleaning out their inbox and don’t want to delete you (because they’re using Gmail and never have to delete an email).

So, marketers, think of it this way. Now, Gmail is helping you do the work. They’re helping you NOT annoy your audience. And maybe, just maybe, when your audience is ready to read what you have to say, they’ll then click on the promotions tab! So, use this Gmail tab thing as an opportunity to mind your list and to optimize it for crying out loud.

Also, users can disable Gmail tabs on their own. So if they love you enough, they can throw you back into their primary. Again, don’t you want to rule out those who may be opening your email just so they don’t have to look at another “unopened” email.

2. B2B not affected. Another observation I had that I haven’t read elsewhere is that the paid business version of Gmail doesn’t have this feature. Only the unpaid, grandfathered in business accounts and the personal free user accounts. So, if you’re marketing B2B, you’re probably still showing up in the primary tab anyway. That is, if you’re using a reputable email company that can get around the spam filters.

3. How many people on your list even have Gmail accounts? I would say, the more that do, the better, as it informs the marketer on the web-savvyness of the audience. However, our boy Chris Penn points out that Gmail still only makes up a portion of lists.

4. Why not send more personal emails? Do blasts even really work? I mean, we all see them from a mile away. And the minute I see an email doesn’t have my name on it, or that I’ve been blind copied (bcc’d) on it, it gets deleted. My point – send more personal emails. They work better anyway. I realize that it’s not always possible and it takes more work and more of a personal touch, but so does Small Business SEO anyway.

Back to work now. 🙂

 

How I Wrote This Post:

1. I started an SEO Workbook. Adding sources/resources and notes (in the form of links to other articles on the topic that may be relevant to the user), I spend a few “Seinfeld-esque” moments throughout my week prioritizing and organizing as ideas come up.

2. Realizing I only had a few minutes each week to blog, picked a topic mentally the night before.
Small Business SEO Bootcamp (Click on this image and see line 7).

3. Coming up with an original take is the hard part, but you’ve gotta do that in order to have good, unique content.

4. Remember – you’re the industry expert, so be confident when you post. Link to your sources, use the keywords from your workbook at least a few times…

5. Post, publish, distribute – wash, rinse, repeat.

See you next week.

Paul Hickey is the managing director of Cabedge Design, LLC – an Atiba Company – and specializes in building strategic websites that help clients and partners accomplish business goals. Paul loves writing and communicating, and helping drive relevant traffic to websites.

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