Is Search Engine Marketing Dead

Thursday, January 27, 2011 0 comments
A recent article from an online marketing agency, OOm (Click here to download) discuss on this topic.

Summary of the articles as follows (those highlighted in Blue are my comments):

Define Search Engine marketing (SEM) and Search Engine Optimization
A normal search displays a few pages of information. Links or information related to your search may pop out at the side of the pages, giving you extra clues or links to other sites.

How can we measure and improve on the profitability of our ad campaign?
The real goal is to connect your business to the right searches, engage them, and turn them into paying customers.

“What if you could come up with a way to advertise on the same page as web search results – without annoying people and achieves measurable results at the same time – a form of advertising that targets potentially interested customers, yet doesn’t bother people needlessly?”

This is the underlying premise of Pay-Per Click (PPC) Marketing, leveraging on Google Adwords, Yahoo! Search and Bing and why you should considering it as part of your campaign.

Five Key Takeaways
Using KAPLAN as the case study,

There are at least 5 takeaways from this case study.

  1. Landing page and website quality are increasingly important
  2. Related to the first point, there is increasing evidence that Google engineers think about similar relevance issues in paid search as they do on the organic side. One example in this case study was a strong effort we put into information architecture (which included keyword – rich page titles, headings, and well-formed URLs) for the KAPLAN site. This effort seems partly responsible for the high initial QS. = lots of spamming words messed up search quality 
  3. The principles of tight targeting and granular campaign organization are borne out by this success story.
  4. The little extras in terms of segmentation and granularity – in this case, targeting one particular local area within campaigns that mention the city in the ad copy (in this case, it’s only Singapore) and on the landing page – seem to be advantageous = a “narrow” geographical location is easier to manage, compared to branding “worldwide” 
  5. All the above points to be value of a cautious, two-stage account buildout process. Building loosely at first and then tightening up later is bound to give you a poor account history that will reflect on your whole effort going forward. A strong, tightly relevant campaign will, by contrast, give you the firm foundation that will allow you to gradually search for ways to expand your ad distribution without incurring a whole lot of extra cost

I personally find SEM & SEO the minimal for any online campaigns. Yes, do let other people find you. But with internet, there's whole lots of information online and more being added each day. We are overwhelmed with so much info that there may be the search results can turn out irrelevant. Of course, the internet search engine giants such as Google and Yahoo are doing their very best to minimize such.

Yes, it does help if you know how to go about it. But will it generate the ROI with "heightened" awareness?

Also read:

Facebook Group vs Facebook Fan Page

Tuesday, January 25, 2011 0 comments

The question always pop up whether you should setup a Group or Fan page account on FB since it is getting popularity.

Here's a quick overview:
  • Pages are generally better for a long-term relationships with your fans, readers or customers;
  • Groups are generally better for hosting a (quick) active discussion and attracting quick attention.

I have maintained two FB Group accounts and I don't find "Group Page" function suitable for my needs. One of which: AHRC5, I haven't been able to create content which I really want, and basically uploading info (which serves similar info as a blog). I DO need to create a "featured writing" over an "event" tab. Maybe, it's time for me to start looking out for a FB fan page.. should there be sufficient content to create one?

Also read:

Menu in F&B marketing

Sunday, January 23, 2011 0 comments
I was having dinner at a cafeteria at Far East Plaza last evening. Menus are placed on the dining table, you have to order on your own and "self-service".

As I walked towards the ordering counter, I was pondering what I should eat. And my first instinct was to "look at the menu" but none could be found. Distinctively I looked up to see the signboard but choice was limited. I stared to the side and saw the menu on a dining table. Without hesitation, I grabbed it, placed it on the counter which was in front of me. This simplified my orders.

Likewise, as the crowd came, they looked at the menu at the counter, which facilitated their ordering. The stall keeper removed it shortly but that made the customers who came later, pondering on their orders.

I believe from this reaction, we can see a simple menu at the counter beats several printed menus lying around. You do not have the waiter to serve your order. To enhance customer service, you would have to anticipate what the customer needs first, and not what they want. There is a difference between what you "want" the customer wants, and what the customer really "needs" is what the revenue you be earning.

The "counter menu" concept exists at all successful fast food outlet. Fast and Efficient, such as Mcdonalds, KFC, Burger King etc etc. So you know what you should do next.

Understand potential threats from social media

Friday, January 21, 2011 0 comments
Social media is the "In" thing now and many companies have began to embrace it, be it for business or for communications.

Experts have identified 3 key threats to this trend: technology, content and behaviour.

Fear of being attacked by malware and computer virus; inappropriate content dissemination; and lastly, attitude. The need for IT Security, HR and Management personnel to look into these aspects and improve integrity. Can you build a pseudo-persona online and manage the content? And where you going to get the content when in reality, the "fake" you doesn't exist, there is "no experience point" for you.

As a staff, I see social media as a useful tool to connect, either in business or personal level, especially during office hours. However, on the stand of management, I felt that it was more on the loss of employees' productivity. Traditional companies will hold their ground against these new media platforms but what about the newer generations of companies, and especially those who are into IT-savvy stuff?

To connect within the social media landscape, I strongly believe in a true identity, not persona. Privacy issue is still a concern, though many social sites have customised option for privacy setting. You never know who is tracking you, especially you are becoming a "hot favorite" on the cyberspace. And "hot favorite" is what you want to get, if you want exposure. What's "next" after social new media?

Also read:

Are Singapore rude and lack of civic mindedness?

Thursday, January 20, 2011 0 comments
Today, I was slammed with an article and was supposed to make a 2-3 pages response to the question. I choose "courtesy" over heritage, as I really have no interest in history. But I do like an argumentative essay question.

Though I was given 30 minutes, my ideas were free-flowing. Unfortunately, I do not have the time to complete it. And I really felt a pity not having to finish it.

Just some highlights which I have included in the essay - racial issue between Indian and Indian-Muslim family, smoking & banning of cigarette, loving pets & animal abusing.

Generally, I would think civic mindedness is very much associated with patience or EQ. We are generally nice people. However, in our society, we are hastened to excel, to accomplish tasks in any faster means. As a result, we lose on EQ.

Courtesy and kindness campaign, does that help at all? A recent article published in June, 2010: Singaporeans slammed for being rude in Australian newspaper

Campaigns are meant to be public broadcasting system, generating awareness. However, do we listen? And do we digest the message? Do education still have its power over people? Much on the surface but no "depth"? How can we do the "depth" in campaign messaging? What are the better alternatives in term of marketing communications?

Customize your Facebook Profile Page

Monday, January 17, 2011 0 comments
Recently, customised facebook profile page is getting popular and fun. This is how I do it:

The most easiest version:

1) Get an image file you like to place on the profile page Resize it to 500px (width) x 68px (height) Cut into 5 equal portion (100px x 68px), and save thumbnail image

2) Upload to Facebook
3) Tag the most left thumbnail 1st, then 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th is the thumbnail appearing on the rightmost

You are done! (also see "Facebook Profile")

Also read: 10 Creative Uses of the New Facebook Profile [PICS]

Online Presence

Thursday, January 13, 2011 0 comments
"you can see yellow pages commence book is so thin now as compare to last time. bec future advertising is all online.. so online skill must be strong.. must have a unique skill to advertise on youtube.. and a place to hang out in web.. the world changed.."

This was the comment made by a friend on my FB. Internet has hastened the process of globalization, making the playing field level nowadays. Gone was those days that you have to listen to TV broadcasts or radio to get fresh news. Just Google on the web and you have all the info. The widespread of Internet has also brought along vast data, which many of them coming from unreliable source. This make a marketer more challenging to bring a piece of news across, using the correct channels and tools. Not forgetting, he may have a budget constraint too.

I glad I come across HTML & Frontpage, which further my interest to do website, content update and blogging. Blogging requires patience. My practice in Journalism and corporate stint in copy-writing have helped me in this area. I like to move on further to corporate and regional, and hopefully globally.


Tuesday, January 11, 2011 0 comments

Finally finished my AHRC5 blog site, will be using it as a site for detailed information.

Primarily, Facebook will still be the main media tool for information dissemination. Now I need to input more content. Furthermore, to improve on some scripts.

Pink Taxi

Monday, January 10, 2011 0 comments
I saw a pink taxi this morning and sparkled my curiosity. There have been some commotion on taxis in the past and I can see this cab having "Hello Kitty" in the vehicle.

Some of the past incidents as shown above.

There's many taxis on the road now. 2010 statistic compiled by LTA show a population of 26,000 taxis in Singapore, out of 945,000 vehicles registered. That gives us an approximately 2.75%

We have around 4 millions in Singapore and only 25% have cars. Such a small island but we do have a sizable car population. According to NationMaster.Com, we we are ranking #49 out of 133 countries involved in study comparison. (Source from United Nations World Statistics Pocketbook and Statistical Yearbook)

Back to the topic:
There were exposure gained from this "out-of-box" promotional tactic. But what is the overall net gain? Branding? ROI? or bad Publicity?

Facebook VS Blog

Friday, January 7, 2011 1 comments
I'm been contemplating the use of blogging vs the use of facebook media for AHRC5. It seems that most of the content will be available on Facebook and it is easy accessible & simple to update.

Unlike for a blog, AHRC5 do not require the need to have a comphresive data. Perhaps, I should just create a "parking" site and use it when there's a need for it.

Customer Loyalty


Two days ago, my girlfriend and I was discussing on why people prefer the new mall NEX over others.

NEX is designed in such a way that food outlets, fashion retailers and other merchants are randomly scattered around the mall layout. Most typical malls such as Vivocity, their retailers are clutter-located. Ie. to say, you can never find a F&B with fashion, or any others together. Reason being, it is easier to design the venting chute for F&B as they need to exhaust the cooking smoke and smell away.

Though it is good, would customers still prefer to go NEX? Maybe it's the convenience. After all, Serangoon is a huge heartland, not to forget the nearby crowds from Ang Mo Kio as well. Customer loyalty to a particular outlet? Doesn't seem to me to work..

Just as we spoke on this topic, she has already terminated her dog grooming services with the existing one after the membership & session package ends. Talk about loyalty program.. People will just move on when there's something better and value for money..


Thursday, January 6, 2011 0 comments
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Facebook Profile

Wednesday, January 5, 2011 0 comments
My interest sparks when I first seen this facebook profile done by one of my friend. That's really arouse my curiosity and I came upon this site which offers me insight.

So now I got my own customised page, I gather this is a good to garner publicity if you have particularly interesting stuff to showcase