IAB’s Rising Stars Ad Units Slow to Take Off

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Every Media Buyer wants simplicity, affordability and success when purchasing advertising.  For online display media, the universal ad package (728×90, 300×250, 160×600, 180×150) was developed to make buying and creating online ads seamless across all websites.  Since 2011, the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s (IAB) has been making ripples with their Rising Stars ad units and is receiving even more buzz lately.  As inventory slowly increases, Media Buyers are able to test more and see results.

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Confluence Digital Turns 5 Years Old!

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In 2008 Confluence Digital’s founder, Eric Layland, was looking to start his own digital marketing agency.  He’d had success starting and running another digital marketing company with over $30 million in annual managed PPC spend. But in 2008 he found himself again wanting to start a new company, this time a different kind of company.  Confluence Digital, LLC  received its business license from the City of Seattle in June of 2009.

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Get the Most out of your Digital Agency by Being a Good Client

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Getting the most out of any engagement, whether it be with a digital marketing agency or any other type of company or person, first requires picking a good partner/provider. But the work isn’t over once you’ve chosen one.  Once you enter into any type of engagement where you are the client, there are a few things you can do to make sure you’re getting the most out of that engagement. Step One: Be A Good Partner Time for a little self-reflection. Look in the mirror. Are you an asshole? Do you know you’re difficult to work with and secretly enjoy getting a rise out of people or worse, find pleasure in trying to intimidate to get your way? C’mon let’s get serious. Let’s grow up. Digital marketing can be complex. There are a lot of moving parts and success often requires successful navigation across an organization. We need to earn buy-in from other teams like IT, Finance or Compliance. Notice I use the word “earn” in reference to getting buy-in and that also applies to respect. I’ve got over 18 years of working with clients providing digital marketing solutions. I love what I do and the teams I put together are damn awesome. Yet I’m dumbstruck by what we encounter while in cooperation with and service to others. So in this blog will indulge a bit. I’m going to rant about personalities we’ve encountered. If you fit one or, heaven forbid, more than one profile, I suggest a self-check.

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Why Saying “I don’t know” Makes You a Good Marketer

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“Until you can admit what you don’t know, it’s virtually impossible to learn what you need to. Because if you think you already have all the answers, you won’t go looking for them.” ~Stephen Dubner

On my last commute to work I was listening to the most recent Freakonomics podcast based on a chapter in their newest book titled “The Three Hardest Words in the English Language”. Here’s the link to the podcast, I highly recommend it. And I will be buying the book. (And no, I have no affiliation with Freakonomics, but I do love their stuff.)

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Local Search – More than a Location: What I Learned at SearchFest 2014

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The third session I attended at this year’s SearchFest in Portland was, “Local Search – More than Location, Location, Location.” This was probably my favorite session of the day as they not only offered up some really great tips for getting to the top of the first page of search results for local searches, they also discussed some ways of standing out once you’re there.

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A Brief Guide to Google+ Dashboards

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When Dorian Gray looks in the mirror every day he sees behind the illusion of beauty and gazes upon the horror that is his true face. You might have similar feelings when you look behind the curtain at the inner-workings of Google+. Long touted as the next big thing in social media, Google has continually pressed the web faring public into creating an account, and in many cases doing it for them. However, like our fantastical friend Dorian, Google+ has received numerous aesthetic upgrades, but on the inside it’s still somewhat of a monster. If you operate a small business and have had to navigate through the UI and various pages of Google+, then you’ll likely know what I’m talking about. I’ve recently had to optimize the presence of several clients on the big plus. What I’ve learned I’ll share with you in the hopes that you’ll be able to save yourself from similar anguish.

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Social Media Etiquette for Business

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What are the attributes of a good friend? They give more than they take in a relationship. They’re helpful. They offer to help you move with only the promise of some pizza and maybe a cold beer when you’re done. They are entertaining and playful. You don’t go out of your way to make plans with your boring and personality deprived “friends”. They have an overall positive outlook on life. They have opinions.

Well it shouldn’t take a degree in quantum physics to understand that if you display these attributes online, people will be more likely to follow you and interact.

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Structured Data Mark-Ups for SEO: What I Learned at Searchfest 2014

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SEO is perhaps one of the most recognized and problematic words in digital marketing.  What really is SEO?  How do we measure it?  What’s included in SEO when it’s offered as a service?  What all does it encompass? Search engine optimization is what a majority of digital marketing is, right?  No matter what channel we’re operating in, we’re usually working to optimize our site, our content, our brand, for the Internet.  Until search engines go the way of the dinosaur, SEO will remain the ways in which we get our online properties in front of the right audiences at the right times. 

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