Welcome to the October 2022 edition of 232! Aro’s quarterly update on all things digital marketing in Aotearoa. In this article we've got all the goss on Google's new direction for search, what it means to #BeReal online, an award-winning campaign to inspire you, and much more!
So let’s get into it.
1. New Changes To Google Search
More than ever before, the internet is a rich tapestry of visual and interactive content. You’ve likely heard the term, “I don’t Google, I TikTok,” thrown around by Gen Z.
How does the world’s largest search engine rise to the challenge? Well, it’s shaking things up with a reinvented, more intuitive approach to surfing the net.
Major advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning have allowed Google to shift away from a system that focuses primarily on question-and-answer, to a tool for curious minds who aren’t necessarily looking for the obvious.
Here are some of the big changes!
In some cases, search results will change from showcasing links to a mosaic grid of images, videos, and other information widgets. This will be massive for tourism businesses.
The change that we anticipate will have the biggest impact is an increase of image thumbnails in organic search results. After 20+ years of just the iconic blue link showing, Google is now introducing more visuals in organic search engine results pages (SERP).
Things to do in Wellington is a great example of this.
So how do you determine this for your website? At the moment it is pretty ad hoc what does and doesn’t show. We anticipate an update in Search Console which will allow marketers to know when images & links show as a result, and how they impact performance.
In the meantime, you can work towards it by having your images listed in the Open Graph Protocol meta tag or in a structured data format. Read more about it here.
These new, visual changes to Google present some interesting new opportunities for success. Here’s three of the most important ways it’s going to impact your results:
🖼️ Utilise image extensions in Google Ads and write for rich-text-snippets where you can. Since the release of image extensions in paid search ads back in 2020, we’ve seen an increase in CTR across our accounts that use this feature!
📰 Expect an increase in 0 click searches. Given that way back in 2020, two thirds of Google Searches ended without a click it will be interesting to see how much further this will increase. Check out this juicy article by Sparktoro on how to make the most with zero click content.
📱New placements on the Google App homepage. Our tip? Make it look organic to increase your click-through-rates.
2. But For Real - Can You Be Authentic Online?
🚨New (sort of) social platform alert! 🚨
If you haven’t put BeReal on your social media radar yet, you’re about to. Launched in 2020, BeReal aims to bring authenticity back to social media and with nearly 3 million daily app visits, you could say it’s pretty popular.
And it’s not just a hot topic among the people. With active users increasing by 315% between January and April of 2022, BeReal is bringing out the copycats. TikTok has just released its response with TikTok Now. Very similar to BeReal, users are prompted daily to capture a short video or snap to share with friends and followers.
And, as expected, Instagram has introduced ‘Dual’ to stories which utilises the front and back camera simultaneously in stories.
What does this mean for marketers?
The desire for authenticity online is nothing new and the explosive popularity of platforms like BeReal only proves how prevalent that desire is. For marketers there are two key considerations:
(1) How can we meet that desire for authenticity?
(2) And to put it bluntly, how do we use BeReal as a platform & possible placement?
Being Real Online
A study about the ‘Online Authenticity Paradox’ published in 2021 addresses the interesting challenges of being authentic in digital spaces. In it, they recognise that while participants believed that achieving online authenticity was possible, their actions online said otherwise.
To be ‘authentic’ requires sharing not only the good stuff, but the bad stuff too. And it comes at a perceived and actual cost - especially for those in marginalised communities and difficult life experiences. TMI?
Well, when you apply that to a business and brand layer it gets even more complicated. But, there are some simple ways your business can start to do that:
✅ Sounds simple, but do what you say you’re going to do and do it well
✅ Acknowledge mistakes when they happen
✅ Have a compelling mission and ethos
How can your business get involved with BeReal?
According to an article from the Financial Times, the app is exploring paid features like subscriptions rather than opening up ad placements commonly used by other social media platforms.
So leverage an influencer or sponsorship strategy? Well… at the moment you can’t do that either without breaking the T&C’s.
But it isn’t the end! If you’re a savvy social media pro, or have a brand that embraces a candid feel, there’s still the opportunity to use the platform organically.
1. Otter.ai 🦦
Spend less time furiously trying to capture notes and key takeaways in meetings, and more time being present. Otter is a tool that transcribes your meetings or interviews in real-time. Did I use Otter instead of typing this? Yeah.
2. Make A Video With Meta
Last 232 we talked about whether the future of digital marketing was artificial or human. A large part of that was driven by the growth in popularity and skill of tools like DALLE.2. And now - for your viewing pleasure - the new era of text-to-video generation.While it’s no replacement for real, high quality video at the moment, it is worth checking out for a good laugh.
Everyone loves a good quiz to find out what Hogwarts house you belong to (Hufflepuff represent), but you can take it so much further with over 30 games of luck, knowledge, and skill.
Whether you’re trying to learn more about what makes your audience tick, give them a memorable first interaction, or personalise their shopping experience there is something for everyone here.
1. ACC: Have A Hmm
If you get hurt, who else gets harmed? As a team, we love getting out there and doing things that get our blood pumping, from skating to parkour… Maybe that’s why this campaign from ACC really resonates with us.
Behaviour-changing campaigns are always fascinating, especially ones that aim to tackle a deeply embedded culture of ‘she’ll be right.’ ACC has done a fantastic job of portraying the key action and message they want people to take - to pause, have a hmm, and think of the others they might hurt. Their work was also recognised at the recent TVNZ-NZ Marketing Awards 2022 for ‘Excellence in Public Sector/Government Marketing Strategy.'
2. Citizen’s Handbook: Local Elections
In the thick of local election season a series of sketches from The Citizen’s Handbook have been popping up left, right, and centre on social media. Originally from 2020, they still support a relevant message - the importance of using your vote and voice.
Looking for a chuckle?
How about a thriller featuring the Orange Man...
That’s it from us!
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