I recently spoke on the Marin Masters Panel. The folks at Marin were gracious enough to share with me the questions they were going to ask, and I thought that if I prepped my answers for publications and released them as a blog post, they would be of value to the readers. It’s possible that I ended up saying something entirely different on stage…but anyway, here they are:
With Yahoo and Bing’s recent change in their partnership, how has your approach altered in having to manage toward the big 3 publishers versus 2 in the past?
With my accounts, I’m barely off the starting line with Gemini, and until I get Gemini fully integrated with Marin, I won’t be. So, my approach hasn’t been altered at all yet…it probably will be at some point, but not any time soon.
What digital channels are you responsible for, and how do you use each channel separately or together as part of the customer acquisition process?
I manage AdWords/AdCenter Pay Per Click exclusively. We have other channel specialists for Paid Social, Display, SEO, Landing Page Optimization, etc. I work very closely with these other folks as our efforts overlap, and it’s often that some of my ideas I wish to implement fall outside of my purview and within that of a teammate.
What’s the best advice you’ve heeded or not heeded for planning ahead for peak periods (e.g. holiday if you’re a retailer/back to business if you’re B2B)?
For each of my Lead Gen clients (which are 100% of my focus), I’ve created an extremely detailed bidding folder setup. Peak periods aren’t any big deal for the bidding folders react appropriately…all I need to do is make sure I have enough budget.
Google recently announced AdWords Customer Match, which is in the same vein as Facebook custom audience targeting. Do you feel you’ll be taking advantage of it and how do you feel in general about the idea of leveraging your own 1st-party audience targeting data?
Absolutely. It’s awesome. IMO, the most valuable part of Customer Match is excluding current customers. However, we will definitely get really granular with positive match buckets.
What do you see as your biggest challenge in the near future?
Empowering teammates with my knowledge. I’ve been a Marin Mad Scientist since I got on the platform, and it’s worked great for “MY” clients. But, that’s not enough…as an organization, we need to get everybody to not only buy into Marin and use our advanced techniques but actually develop new ones on their own.
What do you see as you biggest opportunity? Where do you see yourself investing?
The Display and Paid Social Channels are monsters that are going to grow much bigger and take much more budget than they currently do. I might have to cede some of my PPC budget to them, but that would best for the client and I’m all in favor of that.
With the digital ad world constantly changing, what are you doing to keep up and how do you make sure you’re always using the most advanced and innovative technology and strategies? How do you continue to innovate within your own company?
I read a lot of industry blogs, which helps keep my mind “fertile,” and from this enhanced mental state, I go into a state of “free association” from time to time…usually in the gym. If I’ve stuffed my head with the right external stimuli, I develop new ideas that I then execute upon. Once my ideas are fully baked and tested, I then share them with others.
We’re seeing digital advertising become a lot more customer-centric. This is something Marin has bet on for the future, with our Audience Marketing Suite. In terms of strategic thinking for the future, is your organization thinking along these same lines?
Absolutely. All channels need to not only be in play but be measured in relation to each other. Doing so “properly” is the Holy Grail for both maximum efficiency and maximum utility.
93% of mobile activity happens on a mobile app. As mobile use and traffic continues to grow every year, specifically from mobile apps, how do you approach optimizing across devices? How does strategy differ from device to device?
Customers of the clients I work with rarely will “close” on a phone…though they might enter the funnel on a phone and certainly need to be retargeted to on a phone. The cross-device attribution piece is critical, and our agency is spending a lot of energy and resources on best-of-breed mobile strategies and setups.