The Unfortunate Case of the Small Business Owner


We were talking yesterday to a small business owner who made a chilling observation: “I decided that I was tired of paying for Google Adwords, so I simply stopped advertising. All of my enquiries and all my sales instantly stopped. Nothing.”

We asked the obvious question, “What about natural search results? Didn’t you get some traffic from that?”

Her reply: “I couldn’t even find myself on Google. I was somewhere about page four on the results.”

Needless to say, she quickly restarted her search advertising campaign and business went back to normal.

If there was ever a clear case for content marketing, combined with Search Engine Optimisation, this was it.

If you don’t feature interesting and (above all) relevant-to-your-customers’-pain-points content on your website, why would Google suggest your website to people looking to solutions for their problems?

Once you have suitable content on your website, it’s so much easier to optimise your website for search engines.

As we note in our just-published Content Marketing presentation:

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Content Marketing have always been two sides of the same coin. According to the BrightEdge Future of Content Report (June 2017), 97% of marketers believe that SEO and Content Marketing are converging or have already converged.

If a consumer is using Google or Bing to search for something, the search engines will always be looking for content that meets those specific search parameters. If you are writing content, you will only be effective — i.e. be found — if you use keywords and phrases that consumers are looking for.

Then you need to optimise your content — ensure that it’s in a format suitable for both search engines and human visitors.

Unfortunately, SEO is not a task that you can perform just once and then you’re sorted.

It would be wonderful if every prospective customer used the exact same words and phrases to refer to your products and services.

Yeah, nice dream, not gonna happen.

Then there’s the evolution of phraseology. Nowadays, consumers using voice search on mobile devices are far more conversational in their choices of search keywords. They tend to be less structured in their searching, confident that Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, Siri and Microsoft’s Cortana (and Samsung’s new Bixby) are smart enough to understand what searchers actually mean.

In turn, marketers need to ensure that their content includes both formal and conversational keywords and phrases, to cater to the differing searches conducted across both desktop and mobile devices.

Oh yeah — and you also need to be aware that more and more of Google’s searches are being powered by RankBrain machine learning software, so you need to ask yourself “what would an artificial intelligence make of this sentence?” Do try to avoid the types of linguistic contortions that would trouble non-native speakers. No pressure.

If you want to avoid the unfortunate fate of that small business owner, we recommend that you check out our Content Marketing presentation (available now) and our Search Marketing presentation (due to be published at the end of this month).

Here’s what’s included in the Content Marketing presentation:

The presentation looks ahead at what marketers should expect and plan for in 2017 and 2018 — based on local and global trends you may not yet have had the opportunity to examine — turning those forecasts into a comprehensive report & slide deck in PowerPoint format (with accompanying notes) – information that you can easily present to your team and your clients, bringing everyone up to speed on the latest New Zealand Marketing Insights as we accelerate through what remains of 2017. All presentations are unbranded, so you can add your own branding and comments.

All of our presentations in this Marketing Insights series consist of at least 150 slides, dealing with as many key insights.


Here’s a little taste of what the presentation covers:

  • The three types of content regarded as most important for effective content optimisation in 2017
  • The convergence of SEO and Content Marketing and what that means for marketing and communications professionals
  • Search intents across mobile and desktop, how and why they are different and the implications
  • The surprising new importance of voice search (and what marketers are doing about it)
  • What marketers think about artificial intelligence and its importance for the future of content marketing


Content Marketing as Defensive Mechanism
So many people are talking — not always positively — about brands and companies online, and organisations don’t always get the chance to present their own point of view as part of that conversation. As a result, many are turning to Content Marketing as a means to get their message out there.

Talking to Your Own
Content marketing has also seen itself become an internal PR tool, used to communicate in a planned and more effective manner with staff, dealers and suppliers. How are you ensuring that your own people know what they should about your organisation?

Overcoming “Content Shock”
Even when marketers do invest in Content Marketing, there are challenges. One of the biggest challenge: getting heard out there, amongst the ever-increasing cacophony of social media posts, blogs, video and all. It’s been dubbed “Content Shock” — and we look at how to deal with it.

Content Will Get useful or Get Ignored
Smart marketers will begin to invest in bigger content projects such as creating free and robust online tools, writing the go-to books in their industries, and creating environments where their customers can build a community to share knowledge

content marketers will be held accountable not just for how much content they create, but what it does for the business (much like demand generation teams).

Other topics that feature in this presentation include:

  • Personalisation
  • Engagement
  • Data-driven Insights
  • Interactive Experiences
  • Face-to-face Opportunities & Live Events
  • challenges of developing engaging visual content
  • the talent shortage
  • Algorithm-driven content distribution
  • Live video
  • compelling content experiences
  • the emergence of AI journalism
  • Immersive Content Formats
  • Science-based content marketing
  • The rise of the Content Librarian
  • The continuing rise of paid promotion and the decline of organic reach


Each Marketing Insights presentation is available to purchase and reuse, for $597 plus GST (with volume discounts available for purchases of multiple presentations).

To purchase the Content Marketing presentation by credit card via PayPal, please click here.

If you would prefer to pay by bank deposit or require an invoice before making payment, please send an email to [email protected] with details of your request. (The service provider will be shown as Netmarketing Services Limited in your transaction and on your credit card statement).

Your purchase will be confirmed by email and download instructions will be provided to you, usually within a few hours.

And here are details of the Search Marketing presentation, to be published on July 31:

In this presentation, we’ll wax lyrical about a wide ranging collection of topics, including:

Mobile Really Must Be First
In May 2015, Google reported that mobile searches had surpassed desktop searches on its search engine. Since then, the company has taken many steps which signal that mobile, not desktop, should be considered as the default user experience. Google is moving towards giving priority to mobile-centric indexing, which means that your website must as well.

Three Seconds is the New Fast
According to a study Google presented in late 2016, website that gain priority in search results will be expected to load in three seconds or less. That’s simply a recognition by Google of the impatience of mobile-wielding web surfers. As you might imagine, that has direct implications for your website structure — and whether or not you opt for accelerated mobile pages (AMP) or Progressive Web Apps (PWA), which allow a website to work as if it were an app.

How Machine Learning is Revolutionising Google Search
Google CEO Sundar Pichai laid out the corporate mindset: “Machine learning is a core, transformative way by which we’re rethinking how we’re doing everything. We are thoughtfully applying it across all our products, be it search, ads, YouTube, or Play. And we’re in early days, but you will see us — in a systematic way — apply machine learning in all these areas.”

Perils of the Google Answer Box
In 2017/18, brands will need to place value on optimizing their digital content based on intent rather than specific keywords. As you have no doubt noticed, Google has become more and more likely to offer up specific answers rather than simply links to search results.

Google Shopping Now in NZ
Google Shopping has arrived in New Zealand and is likely to play a larger and larger role in commerce-based search queries. We look at the players so far and examine the possibilities.

Big Data + Search = Attribution Challenges
Today’s conversion paths are extremely complex and as a result, micro-moments matter more than ever. Engaging with customers’ days, weeks, and even months before they’re ready to convert is going to be the new norm.

Reconsider Bing
Bing is a big player amongst the new breed of digital assistants. It’s fueling the search of Apple’s Siri and Amazon’s Alexa, apart from being the default search engine of Microsoft’s Cortana. Ignore it at your peril.

The Move to Natural Language Queries
Why does Google have this irresistible interest in natural language? Sure, on an ideal level, it’s because Google wants “to provide the better answer to users’ needs,” and to do that, Google must:

  • Understand what each web document is about (semantics);
  • Understand what users are actually searching for, now that more and more using their voice to search

Voice Search
Already 20% of mobile queries are Voice Search (and will be 50% in 2020, according to Microsoft). Voice Search is going above and beyond voice recognition and evolving into voice understanding. This involves several changes with respect to:

  • previous searches
  • location-based context
  • context based on frequently used apps
  • personalised information
  • keyword research based on spoken queries

How should marketers modify their content to cope with those new search parameters?

The Search Marketing presentation also looks at:

  • the big challenges of cross-channel marketing
  • getting to know Google RankBrain
  • image recognition searches
  • Key SEO Stats
  • Google’s top 3 ranking signals
  • User Experience Optimisation
  • Content Marketing That Impacts SEO
  • and, of course, a whole lot more

The Search Marketing presentation is also available for $597+GST. You can pre-order your copy of thta presentation by clicking here to pay by credit card via PayPal.

Again, if you would prefer to pay by bank deposit or require an invoice before making payment, please send an email to [email protected] with details of your request. (The service provider will be shown as Netmarketing Services Limited in your transaction and on your credit card statement).

Alternatively, you can purchase BOTH the Content Marketing and Search Marketing presentations together for just $1094+GST (and save yourself $100). Click here to pay for the two presentations by credit card via PayPal.

The Content Marketing presentation will be provided to you right away, as soon as we process your purchase. The Search Marketing presentation will be  provided at the end of July.