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If you use WordPress or Google Ads, you need to know a battle’s brewing

(TECH) Whether WordPress or Google Ads are part of your business, their battle could impact how you market and/or make money.

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wordpress and google ads duking it out

WordPress is in the process of fighting back against Google’s alternative to third-party cookies, FLoC. If they win, it will be a massive loss for anyone using Google Ads in the coming months.

Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC) is Google’s pending replacement for third-party cookies. Instead of using third-party cookies to track browsing, FLoC automatically groups website visitors into “cohorts” that will see different ads depending on their recent activity.

It’s worth noting that, despite Google’s aggressive interest in phasing out third-party cookies, every web browser other than Chrome has opted out of using FLoC, and the EFF has accused Google of propagating further violations of users’ privacy.

But WordPress isn’t interested in the drama around the new tracking measures, opting instead to propose a plan in which FLoC would be blocked in the default settings on their properties. Should they succeed in making this a feature, Google Ads will be hindered substantially on WordPress domains, thereby hiding an estimated 40% of sites from Google’s advertising.

Matt Mullenweg, the CEO of WordPress’ parent company, confirmed that while the idea of blocking FLoC is still in its infancy,there is nevertheless “a proposal from a WP contributor to block FLoC by default.”

Search Engine Land also clarifies that this isn’t a difficult feature to implement, citing that “every programming language that powers websites typically carries a similar functionality” and positing that a paradigm shift for most websites therefore would be feasible.

“This would be relatively easy to implement if a website owner or developer wanted to do so,” writes George Nguyen.

A lot of the alarm regarding FLoC is predicated on the EFF’s risk assessment, with the organization categorically decrying this system as facilitating discriminatory and “predatory” grouping of users: “…placing people in groups based on their browsing habits is likely to facilitate employment, housing and other types of discrimination, as well as predatory targeting of unsophisticated consumers.”

Ultimately, FLoC is a mixed bag, but blocking it has clear and devastating implications for Google Ad campaigns across the board. In the fight between privacy and fair advertising, it’s typical to pick a horse and stick to it; it’s safe to say that FLoC and WordPress’ response to it will upset that paradigm for the foreseeable future.

Jack Lloyd has a BA in Creative Writing from Forest Grove's Pacific University; he spends his writing days using his degree to pursue semicolons, freelance writing and editing, oxford commas, and enough coffee to kill a bear. His infatuation with rain is matched only by his dry sense of humor.

Real Estate Marketing

This mobile app logs your sales calls data to skyrocket your performance

(REAL ESTATE MARKETING) Salestrail is a startup that automatically logs calls so you can improve the performance of your sales calls with less hassle.

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Man on the phone in front of a laptop, making sales call.

Logging sales calls are important because they provide valuable data to businesses. Capturing inbound and outbound calls gives you insights on how to improve your calling strategies to boost your sales team’s efficiency.

Manually logging all that information can be a pain, but it doesn’t need to be. There are several call logging solutions, which make it easier to keep track of all that information. For instance, Salestrail is an automated call tracking software startup that automatically logs sales calls to an analytic dashboard.

Meant for business and remote sales teams, it uses a mobile app to capture and record calls and a cloud-based analytics dashboard to view and analyze call data.

The company’s mobile app works on both Android and iOS devices. It can log incoming and outgoing SIM and WhatsApp calls. Call logs can be viewed by date and phone number, and you can even configure the app’s setting to choose which calls you want to keep track of. However, recording calls is available on Android only, which you can manage and share through the dashboard.

In the Salestrail Dashboard, a variety of metrics are available at your disposal, such as the number of inbound and outbound calls, answered and missed calls, and the duration of a call. Reports can be customized and exported to Excel files. And with the captured data, you can also see which sales rep is performing the best. So, if you’d like, you can give them a pat on the back!

Most importantly, according to the company’s website, their product is “super-easy to use”, and it’s “made by salespeople, for salespeople.” No technical implementation is needed to use their product, and you can get started in less than one minute. Which, in my opinion, is a good thing, especially when it comes to non-tech savvy sales reps.

To get started, you create an account to access the dashboard and download their app. Once your account is set up, you can invite team members to join. You can do this by sharing your company’s sign-up link or emailing invitations directly through the dashboard.

Also, through Salestrail’s APIs, you can connect to your CRM. Call data can be automatically pushed to Salesforce and Hubspot.

Salestrails offers different pricing tiers for both monthly and annual plans. If you’d like to see if they’re right for you, you can sign up here.

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Real Estate Marketing

Steal this Apple marketing method to crush your competitors

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apple copy

Apple is a $2 trillion monolith of a company, and for countless good reasons. One of the primary reasons is their powerful marketing – one could argue they’re more famous for that than their actual product. Alex Garcia has a clear and concise guide to the process Apple uses to create compelling website copy, and it’s something you should absolutely try in your next round of marketing.

Garcia, a known marketing expert, breaks Apple’s copy down into 13 distinct techniques, the majority of which can be lumped into 3 categories:

  1. Appealing to customers
  2. Appealing to experts
  3. Appealing to the algorithm

Like any good marketing scheme, the majority of Apple’s techniques fall into the first category, but the overlap between these groups is what makes Apple’s copy stand out.

When appealing to customers, Apple tends to make things as simple as possible, sticking to a modern adaptation of the phrase “less is more.” This is a process that involves anything from rhyming (yes, seriously) and using alliteration all the way to creating short, energetic sentences that place the reader in the driver’s seat.

Apple also likes to focus on specific product details – edgeless screens, faster chips, camera abilities – as individual selling points, complete with supporting images. In theory, this makes it easier for the consumer to keep track of the benefits of the product.

And that energetic copy, often stemming from short sentences with the words “you” and “your” appearing organically, always accompanying those product details.

For what Garcia identifies as “scanners,” the most impressive information comes first (and uses the largest font), with the rest of the information following an “inverted pyramid” format in which details taper down from largest benefits to smallest benefits.

Apple’s overlap between experts and consumers is similarly notable. For the casual consumer, mentioning the new chip speed or information about the retina display on an iPhone stands out as impressive. And for experts who know how to read the specs they’re seeing, that first impression means just as much. Apple’s inclusion of those specifications in their copy (often in finer print than the bold, consumer-oriented headlines) makes all the difference.

Finally, search algorithms can flawlessly index Apple’s marketing copy due to copious use of keywords (words that don’t feel like keywords to the average consumer) in order to ensure that Apple products are recommended to as many undecided would-be buyers as possible.

Make no mistake: Apple has a metric truckload of other reasons for their success, many of which are well-outside of the grasp of most companies. But their marketing copy, and the confidence with which it is implemented, is something from which any business can learn. Before your next marketing push, consider how you’re appealing to all three categories, while your competitors only consider one (consumers).

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Real Estate Marketing

Google Ads campaigns are notoriously difficult, this tool claims to fix that

(MARKETING) Google Ads remains a strong component of many brokerages’ ad budget, but managing the campaigns is painfully difficult – until now.

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Google Ads fixed

Google Ads is, as far as Alphabet services go, a mixed bag. On the one hand, they facilitate basic advertising in a relatively simple manner, and they have the capability to target an entire search engine; on the other, the ensuing data can be difficult to parse, with entire ad campaigns falling through for no discernible reason. A new tool called PPC Gear promises to help cut through the noise and figure out which ads aren’t working – in only 30 seconds.

PPC Gear makes some lofty promises. Aside from the 30-second bit, the analytics tool claims to triple your Google Ads returns, reduce your wasted costs, and improve your least-productive ads themselves.

PPC Gear is also free to use, promises to stay free in the future, and says that they “​​don’t use your data for anything other than looking at your Google Analytics.”

That 30-second promise is perhaps the most impressive claim. After signing into PPC Gear with the Google account for which you have a Google Ads campaign enabled, the tool will analyze your active campaigns, determine which ones are failing (or delivering subpar results, such as high bounce rates), and find points of adjustment that could–in theory–deliver better results if tweaked.

This analysis also includes intensive ROAS analysis for all of your devices and campaigns, with a budget analysis built into the overall report.

You would be right to wonder why Google Ads doesn’t offer something similar. It’s true that Google Ads will allow you to view your campaigns and the number of impressions you’re making, but the process of doing is less than intuitive–and the results themselves are less than forthcoming. PPC Gear essentially automates this otherwise frustrating and time-consuming endeavor.

In addition to giving you actionable information about your ad campaigns, PPC Gear has several other benefits, one of which involves expert CRO analysis. This can include anything from a closer look at your website’s ads to a review of your UX, and you can opt for a 30-minute conversation with the aforementioned experts.

And, like the tool itself, this service is free.

Advertising is inherently a tricky business, made more so by shifting industry norms and increased customer resilience to ads. PPC Gear may not be a magic bullet, but it has some pretty solid tools to help you figure out how to plan your next move (or six).

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