First Thing Monday – July 24 2017

Watch out if you’re checking Facebook during a meeting.

Facebook video ads now autoplay with the sound on.

Honestly, you’d be much better off checking Google Analytics. Ask a natural language question; get a direct answer. And when all eyes turn to you, you’ll know exactly how many visitors and conversions you got from last week’s sale.

In other news, Google previewed a dramatic change to its homepage. And Amazon launched a social network for shoppers.


Easy as: Ask Google Analytics a question, get an answer

What if you didn’t have to bother your analytics team anytime you had a question about your website or digital campaign performance?

Sure, you could log in to Google Analytics yourself, or ask your agency to provide the data.

But don’t you wish you could simply ask the question and have Google Analytics give you the answer?

Your wish is about to come true. Over the next few weeks, Google is adding this functionality to Google Analytics. Type your question in plain English or ask it out loud, and Google will give you an answer.

Type your question in plain English or ask it out loud, and Google will give you an answer.


So what’s the catch? None really; the functionality is coming to both the free and paid versions of Google Analytics. The system does not yet handle languages other than English, and only provides insights for “what?” and “how many?” types of questions at this stage. Support for “why?” type questions

The system does not yet handle languages other than English, and only provides insights for “what?” and “how many?” types of questions at this stage. But support for “why?” type questions is coming.

Read more…


Facebook’s one finger salute: autoplay ads no longer mute

Surveys tell us there’s only one type of ad that consumers like less than the autoplay video ad.

And that’s autoplay video ads with the sound on.

But no-one at Facebook seems to be listening…

Read more…


Google News Feed is coming to desktop homepage

Last week Google previewed a new “smart” news feed coming soon to its app on Android and iOS devices — and eventually to desktops.

The updated news feed is already available to US users and will be rolled out internationally over the next few weeks.

While no timeframe has been given for the desktop implementation, the move is a dramatic one. It means that the clean, minimalist Google Search homepage long familiar to desktop users will soon be no more.

News stories in a person’s feed will be selected based on their location, search history, the YouTube videos they watch, Google Play music downloads, and signals from other Google services such as Google Maps. A “follow” button will allow them to track specific news topics in their feed.

Read more…


Amazon: Love to Shop? Let’s Talk…

Amazon Spark lets users post stories about, ideas concerning and images of products they love.

It’s intended for Prime users and initially only available to US users of the Amazon mobile app.

Find out more…


We are Overestimating our Digital Progress

According to estimates earlier this year by the World Economic Forum, digital transformation will unlock $100 trillion for business and, more broadly, for society over the next decade.

No matter how you define “digital transformation”, the problem is we are way less digitally mature than we think…

Read more…


Survey: Most marketers think Paid Search the top performer

We like survey results that help confirm that what we do, the reason we get up on a workday morning, gets our clients good results. And it’s for that reason we’ll happily accept the conclusions of Hanapin Marketing’s first “State of Paid Social 2017” report.

According to the report, 87% of marketers think paid search ads are their best-performing tactic. Some 60% of those surveyed will invest more in paid search this year, and over 70% plan to increase social media investment.

Nice numbers, but the report itself is short on details, with no reference to the research methodology.

We suspect that only US agencies, brands and consultants were surveyed, but how large the sample size was we don’t know. Hopefully, it wasn’t just an informal poll the CEO had with his drinking buddies.

For the price of your contact details, you can read more…


What we’ve been reading this week


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About the Author SureFire

These search marketing news updates feature articles of interest picked up through the week by the SureFire team.

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