Meet The Team - Jennifer Telfer our Digital Expert
We have a talented team of specialists here at Eden Scott each dedicated to their industry sector. They spend a good bit of time understanding their market and ensuring they have a good grasp on the latest trends so they can offer the best recruitment advice to our clients and source the very best candidates. None more so than the ever changing world of digital marketing.
So we thought we would get some insight from our digital marketing expert Jennifer Telfer who gives us her thoughts on the latest developments in this sector.
Jennifer, has 2016 unfolded the way you thought it would in the world of digital marketing?
It certainly has. I always felt the industry was going to build on the growth of mobile marketing and find ways to improve service by personalising and localising search.
All the changes we've seen with Google search results; the loss of adverts on the right hand side of search and the increase of card based layouts in search results shows that, while Google haven’t explicitly said so, they are adapting their approach to provide a better experience on mobile.
Improving local results is also a nod to the importance of mobile data providing more relevant SERPs and the focus SEO’s have to put on local search results.
The power of social media has also increased as more channels have grown in prominence and many of the channels have flirted with “buy it now” buttons. The emergence of Snapchat and power of Pinterest have really increased the need for companies to understand how their brand works across a number of channels.
All of these channels, even Snapchat, have funnelled companies down the digital advertising route with organic reach across all channels dropping. Which, of course, has reinforced the need to produce good quality content.
How has the evolution of content marketing changed the market?
The concept of content marketing isn't really new. The reality is if you produced uninteresting, irrelevant content in any medium it wouldn't be successful. However the measurement of what is produced now is more accurate, and people are having to adapt their skills to suit the digital world.
Every type of company, large or small, can benefit from an increased focus on good quality content on their website. The quality also has a bearing on SEO efforts. It is by no means the only element, but is a key component of a company’s SEO efforts.
Due to the changes in the buying cycle the quality is dependent on the customer journey too. People do their research and have often made their decision to buy before they speak to anyone in your organisation. So your content marketing has to go much deeper than the awareness raising material it used to be. It has to answer customer queries at each stage of the buying process and provide the customer with the right level of detail at the right time.
Add this to the fact that over 200m people now use ad blockers means that throwing up lots of adverts across the internet and thinking they will drive your sales is simply not a good use of budget anymore.
So how are these changes affecting recruitment?
I have certainly noticed an increase in traditional communications skills getting a digital make over to get the best results. I attended Turing Festival a few weeks ago and there was a great presentation from Lexi Mills, ManyMinds Digital, on the value of online PR and influencer outreach to website rankings. This is the perfect mix of traditional PR skills being used to maximise the more modern approach of link building – another important part of your SEO effort. For those working in PR not to make an effort to understand the value their services can have to digital marketing is to cut your nose off to spite your face!
If traditional marketing skills are changing then where should people focus their training now?
Analytics is so important and largely under-resourced. With the huge volumes of data out there companies are desperate for people to not only understand it but also to make it work and drive return on investment.
I am seeing a change in culture at a senior level where CEO’s are now appreciating the value of investing in content and SEO but they need to have the staff with the right skills and knowledge to make a difference. They need the marketers that are proficient in analytics; who understand why, for example, some elements of social media are purely about building brand awareness and how to achieve this; or the PR specialists who can drive links from publications around the world and understand why it’s of value.
The industry is changing so fast it is important people keep up or they'll be left behind.