Social Media Marketing

Pandora to test interactive voice ads later this year

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Radio advertisements transmit a message to listeners, however Pandora’s brand-new voice advertisements will enable listeners to react by speaking aloud — — either to get more info about the item being marketed, or to avoid the advertisement if it’s not of interest. The business verified it has a contract to evaluate interactive voice advertisements where listeners engage by speaking back to the advertisement. The test will be powered by the San Francisco-based adtech business, Instreamatic, and will release into beta at some point later on this year.

Unlike web and mobile advertisements — — which can be determined through things like impressions and clicks — — standard audio advertisements aren’t clickable. That implies marketers do not understand for sure the number of individuals who heard the advertisement later on went to look for more details, or buy.

Interactive voice advertisements might alter that. And they get to a time when customers have actually grown comfy connecting with voice assistants, consisting of those on clever speakers like the Amazon Echo, along with on smart devices, similar to Siri on iPhone.

Instead of merely airing a marketer’s message, an interactive voice advertisement might ask the listener if they wish to discover more about the item. An advertisement about a brand-new smart device might consist of a spoken call-to-action welcoming listeners to find out about its functions. The listener would react aloud to the advertisement to get more info. Of they might react adversely to avoid the advertisement.

In addition, Instreamatic claims its voice advertisements platform is powered by AI innovations that enable consumers to state more than simply “yes” or “no” when connecting with an ad. Utilizing innovation like artificial intelligence and natural language understanding, the advertisements comprehend user intent — — and this capability enhances the more consumers engage with them.

For Pandora, the concept is that its marketers might target listeners at times they aren’t normally able to react — — like when they’re out running, at the fitness center, driving or cooking. They aren’t then able to tap or click on advertisements, or otherwise engage with the marketer material.

While Instreamatic made a statement about its handle Pandora for interactive voice advertisements, it’s not the only method Pandora is targeting this market.

” Pandora is deeply buying voice marketing and is driving the marketplace forward by assisting in an environment,” stated Eric Picard, Pandora VP, Advertisement Product Management.

” Pandora is constructing a thorough voice option throughout our consumer-facing offerings with marketing services on top of it to allow our own ‘‘ initially celebration ’ offering along with ‘ third-party suppliers ’ such as Instreamatic and AdsWizz to plug in. Our expectation is that the buy-side — — firms and marketers — are going to wish to do ‘‘ build-once-buy-everywhere ’ options for voice advertisements similar to they have for other markets, and Instreamatic is the very first business concentrated on supporting buy-side voice advertisements throughout publishers,” he described.


Instreamatic released 5 years back as a digital audio advertisement network, however has actually grown its suite of tools to now consist of voice-activated advertisements. The business has actually made other offers for this format, consisting of with totally free music platform Audiomack ; among Russia’s biggest radio groups, Gazprom-Media Radio ; and European radio business Global’s DAX, which will enable marketers to place advertisements with spoken triggers into streaming apps like TuneIn and AccuRadio.


Pandora, nevertheless, is a significant consumer win — and one that might show out the practicality of voice-activated advertisements on a large user base.


Currently, — Pandora has an arrangement to evaluate the format with Instreamatic and prepares to support other third-party suppliers like AdsWizz, likewise at some point later on this year. Picard states he’s not familiar with any scaled options for interactive voice advertisements beyond these 2 business at this time.

. If they desire to get involved, #ppppp> That suggests publishers will require to either offer their own voice option or rely on these suppliers.


Pandora isn’t sharing additional information about its voice-enabled advertisements method, however will likely go more thorough when the tests launch in order to fillin the blanks for possible marketers.


“ The age of voice has actually gotten here, yet there ’ s stayed a plain requirement for significant customer engagement– and quantifiable metrics– in the audio advertisement area, ” statedStas Tushinskiy, CEO,, in a declaration. “ We think Instreamatic supplies the perfect advertisement platform to serve – this market. We ’ re thrilled to be engaged with Pandora to bring this AI-enabled innovation to its marketers and listeners, and prepared to scale these brand-new experiences extremely rapidly as soon as released. ”


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Press Marketing

So You Went to Traffic & Conversion Summit 2019… Now What? (5 Next Steps to Help Implement What You Learned)

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It’s been over a month since you left the sunshine of San Diego and headed back to your business, your head and notebooks brimming with new ideas.

Maybe you came back, hit the ground running, did a presentation on everything you learned, implemented every idea you wrote down…

Or maybe—if you are like the rest of us—your next few weeks looked a little something like this…

At first, there was (possibly) the jet lag. And as fun as those 3 days were, you were exhausted from all the travel and all the learning.

tired north west GIF

So. Much. Learning.

And then, you were busy telling all the fun stories to your coworkers and employees. After all, you got to hear from industry experts and mingle with some of the best up-and-coming minds in marketing… NBD.

And then you may have gotten stuck playing catch-up. You were out for most of the week, and you play a pretty integral part in your business (whether you are running it or not) and you have to make up for all that time.

type corgi GIF

And we all know that catch-up takes way longer than expected, so once you are finally feeling back to normal, it’s the end of March.

And now, as April begins and you are starting to ramp up into Q2, you may find yourself right back where you were in early February: looking for strategies and tactics to help your business.

But guess what? You already have them.

This post is meant to help you get back on track and actually USE all the information from T&C 2019, because it was good information (in our humble opinion).

Step 1: Go Through and Organize Your Notes

You took in A LOT of info while at T&C. Like info overload.

It’s overwhelming to say the least.

You took in A LOT of info while at T&C.

But remember those notebooks you brought and filled up? The Word doc or notes App on your phone you always had pulled up during sessions? The notes hastily scribbled on the backs of promo fliers or cocktail napkins?

You (hopefully) didn’t just toss them like school notes at the end of the year. Because unlike high school geometry, you actually WILL be using all that info in the real world.

All those actionable strategies will help you move the needle for your business.

You just have to go back and review them.

Now that you’ve had time to process and get back into the swing of things, it’s time to go back with fresh eyes.

ryan reynolds book GIF

What did you jot down from that session in Day 2 that made you excited? What was that lightbulb-over-your-head moment from Day 3?

(NOTE: If you can’t remember or (like some of us) have trouble reading your own chicken scratch, you can use our notes, which have been carefully crafted to include the main ideas from every session at T&C.)

Review and organize your notes. Throw out (or maybe frame) those odd doodles, put the business cards in one pile, put all the tools and products in one pile and the strategies in another.

That way, all the information feels less like an overwhelming mess, and more like the ticket to your business’ success. And then you can actually take action to help your business grow.

Step 2: Reach Out to All Those Contacts You Made

Did you meet someone at T&C you’d like to build a relationship with? Maybe it’s a business partnership, or a potential client, or possibly a new bff!

will ferrell bff GIF

But it’s never going to happen if you make the #1 mistake about attending a conference—not following up.

Most people return to their offices and never again engage with the people they just met.

In order to build a relationship with a new contact, you need to reach out and start building trust with that person.

But that can be hard. And intimidating. Plus, you’re busy.

So where do you start?

In order to build a relationship with a new contact, you need to reach out and start building trust with that person.

Continue the conversation with these 6 tips for following up:

1. Separate the business cards into different groups. Only save the cards of the people you want to connect with and discard the rest. Then rank the people in the order you want to reach out to them.

TIP: You shouldn’t hold on to business cards and contact info forever. The next best time to throw out business cards is a year from the date you received them if you made no contact with the person in that time.

2. Add all the contacts into your phone or a spreadsheet and include when and where you met the person.

3. You may also want to add something about the person that makes them stand out. This will help to jog your memory when you reach out to them. It will also help you to personalize your message: “We met at Traffic & Conversion Summit. Really enjoyed your thoughts on Day 2’s opening keynote.”

4. Give special attention to the people who asked you to contact them. Reach out to them first, and the sooner the better.

And you should think about emailing, calling, or texting them if you feel comfortable with that and think they would respond positively. Connecting on LinkedIn is great, but not everyone checks LinkedIn every day. On the other hand, most people check their email/phone daily. Like several times a day. An email or a text increases your chances of getting a response.

5. Put thought into your subject line—add in that personalization to help you stand out or catch their eye.

6. And remember, the best time to email is early morning from 6–7am, or around 8pm–midnight, when they’re less likely to be distracted by their busy work day and have time to actually read your email and respond.

By actually reaching out to all those contacts sooner rather than later, you make sure that you aren’t missing out on a connection that could really help your business.

Step 3: Choose Your One Thing

Thinking, processing, and finding inspiration is an important part of the process. But if you want to turn those thoughts into a reality, you gotta take action. Which brings us to our next step… probably the hardest and most crucial one.

You’ve organized your notes, you’ve reached out to your contacts, and you are probably starting to feel that T&C excitement creep back, even without the loud music and flashing lights of the big ballroom. It’s an awesome, exhilarating feeling.

Image of pyro fun at Traffic & Conversion Summit 2019

But what you don’t want to happen is let the days start to pass with that list still sitting untouched on your desk. Because days become weeks. Weeks become months… you see where I’m going with this.

And soon you’ll be asking yourself… Have you taken action on any of those great ideas?

In order to prevent this, you need to rank all of those ideas you rediscovered in Step 2 in order of importance. And then, you need to put aside all the rest and only DO ONE THING.

Yep, that’s right. Just one. That’s why we said it would be hard.

We know… All of the ideas on your list are important and exciting, especially when every problem in your business feels pressing.

But if you try to do too many of them at once, 1 of 2 things will happen:

You won’t know which idea to start on first, so you won’t start any of them
You’ll start a ton of ideas, but you’ll end up spinning your wheels and having a hard time completing them

If you were around for Richard Lindner’s closing keynote (or if you’ve purchased your handy dandy T&C Notes) you know that he broke down the 4 growth levers for categorizing new ideas: Acquisition, Activation, Monetization, and Retention.

Image of Richards session at Traffic & Conversion Summit 2019

From there, there’s a series of questions you can ask yourself to brainstorm and determine which ideas are most important for your business.

But most importantly, you’ll need a ranking system—one that helps you rank the impact, confidence, and ease a project will have on a scale of 1–10.

Pick ONE thing, and I mean just one, and focus solely on that.

So, make a list of those strategies from your notes that fit your current business needs.

Because odds are, not all of them apply to your business (or maybe don’t apply to your business right now).

Write them down in a separate document from your notes. This way, you can organize your ideas in one spot, and you can brainstorm and flesh out the ideas without getting distracted.

Start with the idea that has the highest total number and then work your way through or eliminate the projects that aren’t feasible.

Then pick ONE thing, and I mean just one, and focus solely on that. This way, you’ll be able to devote all your resources to building and completing your idea.

Okay, so now your focus is on one thing at a time. You’re done… right? Not quite.

Step 4: Make a List of Actionable Steps

During T&C and while reviewing your notes, you probably had several aha moments. But while aha moments work really well as inspiration, they only result in actual change if you break them down into actionable steps.

Once you get your one thing picked out, you want to make sure that you know what to actually do in order to get it done.

For each of your ideas, write down the next 3–5 steps you’d need to take to get this idea off the ground.

Elmo Count GIF by Sesame Street

And remember, these should be actionable and specific to your business.

But once you have your page—or several pages—of steps, don’t sit back and relax. You aren’t done yet…

Step 5: Implement Your Plan

Now that you’ve got a plan, and you know what it will take to make this one change in your business, it’s time to do it.

You’ve broken it down into steps so that it won’t feel insurmountable. But it will still take time, energy, and focus to make sure that it doesn’t wind up at the bottom of the pile every week.

So set aside a half hour at least twice a week (but every day if possible) to work on your one thing. If you work best in the morning, do this first thing when you get in. Or maybe you can’t go on lunch until your half hour is done.

It can sometimes be hard to implement long-term strategies when the short-term, every-day work feels so much more pressing.

Set aside a half hour at least twice a week to work on your one thing.

So if you feel yourself, a few weeks in, losing focus or drive, write what your business will look like when you get this one thing done on a post-it. Then put it somewhere you will see it all the time—the top of your computer screen or on the coffee machine—so that you never lose sight of why you are doing this.

As time goes on, it may be necessary to check in with your strategies. Does it still make sense to focus on the one thing you’ve chosen as time has gone on? Have circumstances in your business changed that make these strategies no longer applicable?

Examine your one thing every so often to make sure that it:

Is on track
Still makes sense for your business

If the answer is yes, then just keep doing what you are doing, but look for ways to optimize.

If your one thing no longer applies or needs to be shelved, it’s time to pivot and choose a different one.

The new one thing may be determined by the thing that made you realize your one thing needed to be put on hold, or you could look at the list of strategies you made in Step 3 and pick your next one thing.

Applying these 5 steps to your business will help you organize your thoughts from T&C, and, more importantly, turn your thoughts into actions. Actions that will move the needle in your business.

mission accomplished GIF

And remember, change is painful. Helping your business grow will not be easy, and it will not be quick. But by breaking down the process, and making sure you are set up to make 2019 the best year your business has ever seen.

(NOTE: Since you can’t be in multiple places at once, you missed out on more than 80% of the sessions at T&C, and any of them could have contained a strategy to help your business. But don’t worry, you can pick up the T&C notes, which contain notes from  every session at T&C.)

The post So You Went to Traffic & Conversion Summit 2019… Now What? (5 Next Steps to Help Implement What You Learned) appeared first on DigitalMarketer.

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Web Optimization

What Links to Target with Google’s Disavow Tool – Whiteboard Friday

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Posted by Cyrus-Shepard

Do you need to disavow links in the modern age of Google? Is it safe? If so, which links should you disavow? In this Whiteboard Friday, Cyrus Shepard answers all these questions and more. While he makes it clear that the majority of sites shouldn’t have to use Google’s Disavow Tool, he provides his personal strategies for those times when using the tool makes sense.How do you decide when to disavow? We’d love to hear your process in the comments below!

Click on the whiteboard image above to open a high-resolution version in a new tab!

Video Transcription

Howdy, Moz fans. Welcome to another edition of Whiteboard Friday. I’m Cyrus Shepard. Today we’re going to be talking about a big topic — Google’s Disavow Tool. We’re going to be discussing when you should use it and what links you should target.

Now, this is kind of a scary topic to a lot of SEOs and webmasters. They’re kind of scared of the Disavow Tool. They think, “It’s not necessary. It can be dangerous. You shouldn’t use it.” But it’s a real tool. It exists for a reason, and Google maintains it for exactly for webmasters to use it. So today we’re going to be covering the scenarios which you might consider using it and what links you should target.

Disclaimer! The vast majority of sites don’t need to disavow *anything*

Now I want to start out with a big disclaimer. I want this to be approved by the Google spokespeople. So the big disclaimer is the vast majority of sites don’t need to disavow anything. Google has made tremendous progress over the last few years of determining what links to simply ignore. In fact, that was one of the big points of the last Penguin 4.0 algorithm update.

Before Penguin, you had to disavow links all the time. But after Penguin 4.0, Google simply ignored most bad links, emphasis on the word “most.” It’s not a perfect system. They don’t ignore all bad links. We’ll come back to that point in a minute. There is a danger in using the Disavow Tool of disavowing good links.

That’s the biggest problem I see with people who use the disavow is it’s really hard to determine what Google counts as a bad link or a harmful link and what they count as a good link. So a lot of people over-disavow and disavow too many things. So that’s something you need to look out for. My final point in the disclaimer is large, healthy sites with good link profiles are more immune to bad links.

So if you are The New York Times or Wikipedia and you have a few spam links pointing to you, it’s really not going to hurt you. But if your link profile isn’t as healthy, that’s something you need to consider. So with those disclaimers out of the way, let’s talk about the opposite sort of situations, situations where you’re going to want to consider using the Disavow Tool.

Good candidates for using the Disavow Tool

Obviously, if you have a manual penalty. Now, these have decreased significantly since Penguin 4.0. But they still exist. People still get manual penalties. Definitely, that’s what the Disavow Tool is for. But there are other situations. 

There was a conversation with Marie Haynes, that was published not too long ago, where she was asking in a Google hangout, “Are there other situations that you can use the disavow other than a penalty, where your links may hurt you algorithmically?”

John Mueller said this certainly was the case, that if you want to disavow those obviously dodgy links that could be hurting you algorithmically, it might help Google trust your link profile a little more. If your link profile isn’t that healthy in the first place if you only have a handful of links and some of those are dodgy, you don’t have a lot to fall back on.

So disavowing those dodgy links can help Google trust the rest of your link profile a little more. 

1. Penalty examples

Okay, with those caveats out of the way and situations where you do want to disavow, a big question people have is, “Well, what should I disavow?” So I’ve done this for a number of sites, and these are my standards and I’ll share them with you. So good candidates to disavow, the best examples are often what Google will give you when they penalize you.

Again it’s a little more rare, but when you do get a link penalty, Google will often provide sample links. They don’t tell you all of the links to disavow. But they’ll give you sample links, and you can go through and you can look for patterns in your links to see what matches what Google is considering a spammy link. You definitely want to include those in your disavow file. 

2. Link schemes

If you’ve suffered a drop in traffic, or you think Google is hurting you algorithmically because of your links, obviously if you’ve participated in link schemes, if you’ve been a little bit naughty and violated Google’s Webmaster Guidelines, you definitely want to take a look at those.

We’re talking about links that you paid for or someone else paid for. It’s possible someone bought some shady links to try to bring you down, although Google is good at ignoring a lot of those. If you use PBNs. Now I know a lot of black hat SEOs that use PBNs and swear by them. But when they don’t work, when you’ve been hurt algorithmically or you’ve been penalized or your traffic is down and you’re using PBNs, that’s a good candidate to put in your disavow file.

3. Non-editorial links

Google has a whole list of non-editorial links. We’re going to link to it in the transcript below. But these are links that the webmaster didn’t intentionally place, things like widgets, forum spam, signature spam, really shady, dodgy links that you control. A good judge of all of these links is often in the anchor text.

4. $$ Anchor text

Is it a money anchor text? Are these money, high-value keywords? Do you control the anchor text? You can generally tell a really shady link by looking at the anchor text. Is it optimized? Could I potentially benefit? Do I control that?

If the answer is yes to those questions, it’s usually a good candidate for the disavow file. 

The “maybe” candidates for using the Disavow Tool

Then there’s a whole set of links in a bucket that I call the “maybe” file. You might want to disavow. I oftentimes do, but not necessarily. 

1. Malware

So a lot of these would be malware. You click on a link and it gives you a red browser warning that the site contains spam, or your computer freezes up, those toxic links.

If I were Google, I probably wouldn’t want to see those types of links linking to a site. I don’t like them linking to me. I would probably throw them in the disavow. 

2. Cloaked sites

These are sites when you click on the link, they show Google one set of results, but a user a different set of results. The way you find these is that when you’re searching for your links, it’s usually a good idea to look at them using a Googlebot user agent.

If you use Chrome, you can get a browser extension. We’ll link to some of these in the post below. But look at everything and see everything through Google’s eyes using a Googlebot user agent and you can find those cloaked pages. They’re kind of a red flag in terms of link quality. 

3. Shady 404s

Now, what do I mean by a shady 404? You click on the link and the page isn’t there, and in fact, maybe the whole domain isn’t there. You’ve got a whole bunch of these. It looks like just something is off about these 404s. The reason I throw these in the disavow file is because usually there’s no record of what the link was. It was usually some sort of spammy link.

They were trying to rank for something, and then, for whatever reason, they removed the entire domain or it’s removed by the domain registrar. Because I don’t know what was there, I usually disavow it. It’s not going to help me in the future when Google discovers that it’s gone anyway. So it’s usually a safe bet to disavow those shady 404s. 

4. Bad neighborhood spam

Finally, sometimes you find those bad neighborhood links in your link profile.

These are things like pills, poker, porn, the three P’s of bad neighborhoods. If I were Google and I saw porn linking to my non-porn site, I would consider that pretty shady. Now maybe they’ll just ignore it, but I just don’t feel comfortable having a lot of these bad, spammy neighborhoods linking to me. So I might consider these to throw in the disavow file as well.

Probably okay — don’t necessarily need to disavow

Now finally, we often see a lot of people disavowing links that maybe aren’t that bad. Again, I want to go back to the point it’s hard to tell what Google considers a good link, a valuable link and a poor link. There is a danger in throwing too much in your disavow file, which a lot of people do. They just throw the whole kitchen sink in there.

If you do that, those links aren’t going to count, and your traffic might go down. 

1. Scraper sites

So one thing I don’t personally put in my disavow file are scraper sites. You get a good link in an online magazine, and then a hundred other sites copy it. These are scraper sites. Google is picking them up. I don’t put those in the disavow file because Google is getting better and better at assigning the authority of those links to the original site. I don’t find that putting them in the disavow file has really helped, at least with the sites I work with. 

2. Feeds

The same with feeds. You see a lot of feed links in Google’s list in your link report. These are just raw HTML feeds, RSS feeds. Again, for the same reason, unless they are feeds or scraper sites from this list over here. If they are feeds and scrapers of good sites, no need. 

3. Auto-generated spam 

These are sites that are automatically generated by robots and programs. They’re usually pretty harmless. Google is pretty good at ignoring them. You can tell the difference between auto-generated spam and link scheme again by the anchor text.

Auto-generated spam usually does not have optimized anchor text. It’s usually your page title. It’s usually broken. These are really low-quality pages that Google generally ignores, that I would not put in a disavow. 

4. Simple low quality

These are things like directories, pages that you look at and you’re like, “Oh, wow, they only have three pages on their site. No one is linking to them.”

Leave it up to Google to ignore those, and they generally do a pretty good job. Or Google can count them. For things like this, unless it’s obvious, unless you’re violating these rules, I like to leave them in. I don’t like to include them in the disavow. So we’ve got our list. 

Pro tips for your disavow file

A few pro tips when you actually put your disavow file together if you choose to do so. 

Disavow domain

If you find one bad link on a spammy domain, it’s usually a good idea to disavow the entire domain, because there’s a good chance that there are other links on there that you’re just not spotting.

So using the domain operator in your disavow file is usually a good idea, unless it’s a site like WordPress or something with a lot of subdomains. 

Use Search Console & third-party tools

Where do you find your links to disavow? First choice is generally Search Console, the link report in Search Console, because that’s the links that Google is actually using. It is helpful to use third-party tools, such as Moz Link Explorer, Ahrefs, SEMrush, whatever your link index is, and that’s because you can sort through the anchor text.

When Google gives you their link report, they don’t include the anchor text. It’s very helpful to use those anchor text reports, such as you would get in Moz Link Explorer, and you can sort through and you can find your over-optimized anchor text, your spammy anchor text. You can find patterns and sort. That’s often really helpful to do that in order to sort your information.

Try removing links

If you have a disavow file, and this happens on a lot of older sites, if you’re auditing a site, it’s a really good idea to go in and check and see if a disavow file already exists. It’s possible it was created prior to Penguin 4.0. It’s possible there are a lot of good links in there already, and you can try removing links from that disavow file and see if it helps your rankings, because those older disavow files often contain a lot of links that are actually good, that are actually helping you.

Record everything and treat it as an experiment

Finally, record everything. Treat this as any other SEO process. Record everything. Think of it as an experiment. If you disavow, if you make a mistake and your rankings drop or your rankings go up, you want to know what caused that, and you need to be responsible for that and be a good SEO. All right, that’s all we have for today.

Leave your own disavow comments below. If you like this video, please share. Thanks, everybody.

Bonus: I really liked these posts for detailing alternative ways of finding links to disavow, so I thought I’d share: 

Too Many Links: Strategies for Disavow & CleanupGoogle’s “Disavow Links Tool”: The Complete Guide

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