All posts by Dave Chaffey

Dave is editor of many of the 7 Step to Success guides on Smart Insights. He is a bestselling author, consultant and speaker who enjoys sharing tips, tools and techniques on all things digital, but especially those most influential in driving awareness, leads and sales. That's SEO, PPC, Social Media, Email Marketing, Site Design and Analytics! You can connect with Dave through any of these social networks to receive his latest insights or to ask a question: LinkedIn - Google+ - Twitter - Facebook. Dave is author of 5 bestselling books on digital marketing including Emarketing Excellence and Digital Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice. In 2004 he was recognised by the Chartered Institute of Marketing as one of 50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have helped shape the future of marketing.

From SMART to SMARTER marketing objectives

When identifying specific marketing objectives to support your long-term goals, it is common practice to apply the widely used SMART mnemonic. You will know that SMART is used to assess the suitability of objectives set to drive different strategies or the improvement of the full range of business processes. One of the main reasons that we called our site and service SMART Insights is because we wanted to help marketers succeed through using a more structured approach to planning to give more realistic targets they could be more confident of achieving. Using SMART objectives and then measuring them through properly customised analytics reports is a big part of how we hope to help too. With SMART objectives documented in Plans linking objectives to strategies and KPIs everyone is sure exactly what the target is, progress towards it can be quickly and regularly reviewed, for example…

Dynamic Product ads bring product retargeting to Facebook

Importance: [rating=4] For Retailers looking to retarget their audience on Facebook Recommended link: Facebook announcement of Dynamic Product ads Facebook announced Product Ads this week. Here's an example to show why they're dynamic:   In their post announcing product ads, they explain:

“Product ads, a solution designed to help businesses promote multiple products or their entire product catalog, across all the devices their customers use. With product ads, businesses can showcase more products and people on Facebook can discover more relevant products”.

So this ad option extends Custom Audiences which can already be used for targeting to reference individual products. While it’s of most interest to retailers and all of Facebooks ads show this, it does look as if manufacturers or brands could use the service too. Given the popularity of Google's PLAs this is likely…

and if not, why not?

There is only ever one pot of money for investments in marketing, so it can seem it is spread more thinly each year as you need to engage customers across more digital touchpoints. Worse still, the size of the pot may shrink as budgets are cut. So, it's a challenging decision as to where to invest wisely. In our Managing Digital Marketing 2015 we did ask about investments in different types of media and developing digital experiences, but we also thought we would turn the question on its head by asking where the frustrations were with investment in time or budget. We asked respondents where they felt there was insufficient investment which highlighted some common frustrations. You can see that respondents naturally felt there were a number of areas of underinvestment. That's…

Tools for benchmarking and comparing average media mix or traffic sources between websites

Naturally all digital marketers want more (quality) traffic. This begs the question where do we find this traffic? What is our optimal mix of online media? One approach to answering this question is to turn to the traffic sources report in Google Analytics. Where Google Analytics benchmarking once again presents your mix of referrers relative to others in your category. Your relative performance is shown under the Audience menu accessed via the Benchmarking option like so:

If you're not familiar with these, the four main traffic sources reported at this level in Google Analytics are:

Search traffic – This is separated into natural or organic and paid search (Adwords) Referral traffic – This is traffic from other sites which have direct links to your site Direct traffic – Direct traffic results from URL type ins, bookmarks or…

A summary of new research giving the CMO viewpoint 

In our Managing Digital Marketing 2015 report we summarised our recent research into the changes to processes, structure and teams needed for managing digital marketing. A broader viewpoint is available in this new research, The Next Era of Marketing (free download, registration needed) from The Economist sponsored by Marketo. This new report included responses from senior marketers in larger organisations worldwide. 478 CMOs and senior marketing executives worldwide were survey. More than 50% of respondents hold the CMO title or top marketing position. Respondents wee located in North America (33%), Europe (30%), Asia-Pacific (29%) and Rest of World—which encompasses Africa and Latin America (9%). More than 50% of survey respondents (52%) hail from companies with more than US$500m in revenue; 20% have revenue of over US $5bn. Here's my brief summary to the implications of the report.

Changes to the structure of the marketing organisation


What is PR Smith's SOSTAC® marketing planning model and how do you use it?

If you don't know PR Smith's SOSTAC® model, it's worth getting to know if you're involved with planning marketing strategies or campaigns.  SOSTAC® was voted the third most popular model in the CIM poll on marketing models in 2011 because it's easy to remember and it makes it easy to structure plans for different planning activities. Whether you're creating an overall marketing or digital marketing strategy or improving individual channel tactics like SEO or email marketing SOSTAC®, is your friend. February 2015 update: If you're an Expert member of Smart Insights, you can read Paul Smith's 160 page guide explaining How to create the Perfect Digital Plan using SOSTAC®. Recommended Guide: SOSTAC® Digital Marketing Plan guide Learn how to structure…

The best email statistics sources to benchmark open and clickthrough rates for your email campaigns in the UK, US, Europe, Asia-Pacific including Australia

Email marketers often ask "how do our campaigns compare?". They're looking for statistics to compare subscriber engagement for open, clickthrough and delivery rates, ideally within their sector. Fortunately, there are a number of good options to benchmark email response across different sectors. The best stats sources are compilations by email marketing service providers who produce statistics across their clients' campaigns. As well as our compilation of the latest data, I also recommend Mark Brownlow's compilation of Email marketing statistics sources.

Email Statistics - 2015 update

We will continue to update this resource through the year as new reports are produced by the main email platforms. Do contact us if you're an email provider with new stats to share.

Breakdown of market share for email clients: Mobile and desktop

Litmus, one of the…

The Smart Insights summary of digital marketing developments

This year we'll be continuing our summary of the 'must-know' developments in digital marketing, so they're available to our members to scan as a quick summary each month. January was a quiet month for changes on the main platforms. The main development to be aware of from January is that Facebook changed it's newsfeed to filter out 'promotional posts'. In this summary, we look at developments across the 5 key areas of managing digital marketing each month.

Strategy and planning

In our State of Digital Marketing infographic we summarised the techniques that work best in digital marketing today based on our Managing Digital Marketing 2015 research to be presented at the TFM&A 2015 event on the 25th and 26th February. State of B2B Digital Marketing in 2015…

30 cutting-edge digital marketing tools and techniques to help grow your business

It’s my favourite time of blogging year, where we look ahead to what will be the major trends in digital marketing in the year ahead. I find there’s a real thirst for knowledge amongst marketers about the latest trends in digital marketing and Ienjoy reviewing the latest marketing techniques and technologies. For the past few years I have given my recommendations on the trends as I see them, based on reviewing innovation in marketing technology through the year, plus crowdsourcing what Smart Insights readers see as important for them.

February 2015 Digital Trends Update

Well, we're well into 2015 now and we have been adding to our coverage of the latest trends. After you have taken a look at the tools listed here, I hope these may be useful too: Managing Digital Marketing…

Our recommendations and reviews on email marketing broadcast software options

I am often for recommendations for affordable E-mail broadcast software packages for Email marketing, E-newsletters or Ezines. This guide highlights some of the options that are most commonly used in the UK and delegates on my E-mail marketing courses have recommended to me. It's an informal post I originally started on a previous site in 2005 to point marketers on courses to for a shortlist of suppliers to review and I've added to it and removed sites over the years. I always recommend hosted (Email Service Provider or ESP) email marketing solutions rather than software since, in general, the reporting/tracking and bounce management capabilities of the cheaper desktop e-mail packages are inferior. There are also management problems with deliverability and blacklisting which are best managed by an external email service provider in my opinion. Although you can use an email service provider in another…
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