Good morning, letting go is hard. 

Are you still holding on to standard text ads after all these years? Or has it really been two years since you last checked on your Microsoft Advertising (Bing Ads) account? Whatever the reason, if you’re running standard text ads in your Microsoft campaigns, they will remain active until March 31. Microsoft had originally said it would shut them off at the end of 2019, but apparently, there are enough advertisers who didn’t get the memo that they have extended the standard text ads deadline by three months. If you don’t have any extended text ads in your Microsoft campaigns, the easiest thing to do is to import them from your Google Ads accounts. Otherwise, start building out new ones in your campaigns now.

“Think about Google as a database of human intention and behavior,” said longtime SEO and content marketer A.J. Ghergich in a chat with Barry Schwartz that ranged from Google algorithms to starting and scaling an agency. Ghergich added, “If it’s a database of human intention, it’s a database of customer intention.” 

Ghergich devises programs to mine and harvest that data with natural language processing software. But your process can be as simple as a Chrome plugin and a Google Sheet. “Start with the ‘People Also Ask’ Box,” says Ghergich. The ultimate goal? To have more “empathy” or understanding for his customers than his competitors. Ghergich mines questions as much as possible and ties them to root keywords to understand customer intent. That then becomes content fodder: “These are the five things our customers are struggling with, help them.” Watch the full interview with Barry and A.J. here

Read on for a Pro Tip on YouTube bumper ads and more. 

Ginny Marvin
Editor-In-Chief

 
 
 
Pro Tip
 

Do 6-second bumper ads on YouTube help with performance?

“For brand awareness, bumper ads can be extremely effective at driving brand lift and at a much more efficient cost (i.e. lower cost per lifted user), since you pay on CPM,” explains Ashley Mo of 3Q Digital and SMX speaker who shared her insights about YouTube campaigns. “These also work well with the new video ad sequencing product. You can create sequences where you retarget videos of a long video with a short bumper ad to ‘echo’ your original messaging.”

More from SMX »

 

Why you struggle to sell SEO... and what you can do about it

This white paper from Boostability outlines three reasons why a client might be hesitant to commit to an SEO campaign and what you can do to assuage those worries. Using the strategies outlined in this guide can help you close the sale with clients of all sizes and from a wide variety of industries.

Get it now »

 
Search Shorts
 

Are you links shorting out?

Internal 404s. Google recommends that you update your internal links to ensure no links are 404ing.

2020 headlines. Google’s John Mueller jokes that simply updating your 2019 stories with 2020 headlines is not a great idea. See more on Reddit.

HTML or XML. Both hreflang implementations work fine according to Google.

 

Save big on search marketing training

Make 2020 the year you take your search marketing campaigns — and career — to new heights. Attend Search Marketing Expo – February 19-20 in San Jose – for the actionable tactics you need to drive more awareness, traffic, conversions, and sales. The all-new agenda features 85+ sessions organized into three lanes with no limits: SEO, SEM/PPC, and digital commerce marketing. Choose your ideal pass and book by next Saturday, January 18 to save up to $450 off on-site rates!

Register now »

 
 
 
What we're reading
 

We've curated our picks from across the web so you can retire your feed reader

2020 Local SEO Success: How to Feed, Fight, and Flip Google – Moz

Gambling addicts searching on Google for help bombarded with ads for online casinos – The Independent

How Ziff Davis used paid search and SEO to increase its affiliate business over the holidays – Digiday

Medium Google Organic Traffic Takes A Beating – Search Engine Roundtable

Mike Bloomberg has spent nearly $15 million to be in your Google search results – The Verge

Rich Results Patent from Google Moves on from Only Books – Go Fish Digital

The Next Frontier of Local Search: Introducing the “Query Carousel” – Brodie Clark Consulting

Why You Should be Leveraging Google Smart Bidding – Seer Interactive