From a false alarm over a possible Penguin update, to Burger King’s beef with Wendy’s, January got 2016 off to a busy start from a digital marketing perspective.
Here, we’ve used Buzzsumo to bring together 15 of the month’s most shared posts from the fields of web design, content marketing, PPC, SEO and social media marketing. So scroll down, scan our summaries and catch up with what’s been going on in the world of digital marketing.
Above: This month, the death of Internet Explorer 8, 9 and 10 was a cause for celebration among many web developers. Image by mroach.
Web Developers Rejoice; Internet Explorer 8, 9 and 10 Die
For years, web developers have been driven to distraction by Internet Explorer, particularly its inability to handle modern CSS. So it comes as no surprise that many welcomed the much anticipated ‘end of life’ of its old browsers last month.
This story was written by Owen Williams and published in The Next Web in advance of the shut-down.
The Sad State of Web Development
It’s easy to see why the post was originally published anonymously – them’s fighting words.
The Website Obesity Crisis
This post racked up shares last month, thanks in part to its humorous yet thought-provoking approach to tackling the issue of website bloat: namely, revealing that many web pages are larger than classic Russian novels such as Crime and Punishment.
The post is actually a text version of a keynote speech given by Maciej Cegłowski at the Web Directions conference in Sydney last year, and can also be viewed as a video.
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Above: Never underestimate the importance of choosing the right imagery for your content. Image from Visual Hunt.
Content Marketing Advice from Visual Hunt CEO, Andrzej Stawarz
It’s well known that posts with images receive significantly more views than those without – but choosing the right image can be a challenge. That’s why so many people were interested in the advice of Andrzej Stawarz, CEO of stock photography start-up Visual Hunt.
From using relatable images to understanding the psychology of colour, this post is full of helpful, easy-to-implement tips for content marketers.
ScribbleLive Acquires Visually to Combine Their Content Marketing Tools
Both ScribbleLive and Visually are huge names in the world of content marketing, so it’s unsurprising their merger gained a lot of coverage. While Visually will continue to exist as a separate brand and marketplace, over time the two companies will become ‘increasingly connected’.
Anthony Ha covered the story for Tech Crunch, providing an insight into the background – and future direction – of both businesses.
My Single Best SEO Tip for Improved Web Traffic
After five years with Moz, last month its SEO and Content Architect Cyrus Shepard left for pastures new – and decided to share one last tip on the Moz Blog before he went.
Intrigued? Let’s just say Shepard’s tip centres on optimising pages for how users are actually using them. But you’ll have to read the original blog to find out all the juicy details.
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Above: Do you have all the PPC tools you need? Image from Unsplash.
The Competitive World of PPC: 3 Helpful Online Advertising Tools to Help You Win with Search Marketing
This post is pretty much what it says on the tin – it discusses the importance of competitive analysis for PPC marketers, then outlines the advantages of SpyFu, SEMrush and iSpionage.
The article was written by Michael Bak and published on TopRank Marketing Blog.
Brand Bidding & PPC Optimization: How We Got Here
Search Engine Land is running a series of posts dedicated to brand bidding and PPC optimisation. The aim is to show PPC advertisers how to gain meaningful growth numbers over the upcoming year in a market that is both crowded and competitive.
This is the first post in an eight-part series, and it focuses on the historical context of PPC optimisation.
AdStage Looks Beyond Advertising
The launch of a new product by AdStage was big news in the PPC community last month. The product, Automate, allows advertisers to create rules that will automatically adjust their ad campaigns across an array of platforms, including Google, Bing, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
Anthony Ha covered the story for Tech Crunch.
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Above: This chap was not responsible for changes to Google rankings in early January. Image by Tambako The Jaguar.
Google Had a Major Core Ranking Algorithm Update This Past Weekend
Webmasters and SEOs were on the lookout for a Penguin update this January, which is why early signs of a change in Google rankings set alarm bells ringing.
After the changes turned out not to be Penguin-related and actually the result of a core ranking algorithm update, it’s not surprising that the news was shared on such a large scale
10 Predictions for 2016 in SEO & Web Marketing
Rand Fishkin continues his annual tradition of predicting the major trends in the year ahead in the world of SEO and web marketing, from Twitter figuring out how to grow again, to legislation aimed at stemming the rise in adblockers.
Fishkin also pre-empts his post by assessing the accuracy of his predictions for 2015. He got some right, and some wrong, but overall came out (just about) on top – either way, it makes for an interesting retrospective of some of last year’s biggest tech trends.
Content Marketing Tips for B2B Organizations
Another hit by Rand Fishkin (truly he is the Wizard of Moz), who here has produced a video sharing his tips for successful B2B content marketing as part of Moz’s ‘Whiteboard Friday’ series.
Given the predominance of content marketing advice aimed at B2C businesses, or B2B companies with B2C-like audiences, Fiskin’s walkthrough was a breath of fresh air – which is perhaps why it was shared over 4.6K times.
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Social Media Marketing
Above: Burger King took to Twitter to make a dig at competitor Wendy’s. Screenshot from Mashable.
Wendy's and Burger King Add Some Flame-Broiled Goodness to Twitter Beef
When Wendy’s took to Twitter to promote their ‘4 for $4’ deal, Burger King couldn’t resist the chance to one-up them with their own ‘5 for $4’ deal, which includes everything the Wendy’s deal does, plus a cookie.
People love a sassy Twitter exchange between well-known brands, which is why this interchange gained so much traction – this Mashable post chronicling the exchange garnered over 7.1K shares.
Top 20 Social-Media Tools to Add to Your Arsenal in 2016
Capitalising on the early January urge to get one’s house in order, this post outlines 20 social media tools that social media marketers might want to adopt in 2016. You’ve probably heard of a lot of them, but there might be a few new gems in their worth considering.
The complete list was compiled by Peter Daisyme for Entrepreneur.
Facebook Live: What Marketers Need to Know
Facebook Live became available for all verified Facebook pages in late December, which means that January was prime time for getting to grips with this new tool. This Social Media Examiner post provides a comprehensive overview of just what exactly Facebook Live is, how it works, and how social media marketers might want to use it.
It also includes a ‘5 Ways to Use Facebook Live’ section, which contains several real-world examples of businesses that are already employing Facebook Live for peeks behind the scenes, how-tos, product demos, Q&As and breaking news.
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