Digital Marketing’s Lowdown.
Technology is growing esponentially. Digital technology has accellerated the speed with which we exchage and consume information.
This may sounds really good, and it is at first, but for many professionals it quickly becomes a challenge to filter, categorize and prioritize the information which help us better perform while avoiding to loose ourselves in the infamous “Information Overload”.
This web site is meant to be an instrument you can use to eliminate the confusion and close the distance you may perceive as existing at this moment between you and your business goals.
For most of the time I spent in contact with individuals responsible for a business performance, I always felt how so torn they were about having to rely on ideas, concepts, strategies which were, for the most part, alien to their logic.
All they were really looking for was someone able to make them see, understand, why a particular strategy, concept or idea was undoubtably more effective than the other.
That is why I like to think of my approach as a system to get to the lowdown of digital marketing.
Less is more, right?
Speed and technology are better leveraged without loosing sight of the basic truths. Those don’t change.
The marketing information I present to you, on this site or in consultation, is always based on direct experience and time tested marketing strategies modernized by leveraging technology (Software and services), but the final recepie is always simmered down to what is really needed to remain sharply focused on effectiveness (ROI)
The Short Story
1976 Student ( Visual Arts – Industrial Design – Marketing )
1979 Studio Photographer
1984 Graphic Designer
1991 Web Designer
My soul elates when forms and colors open a window into my mind. This is Design to me.
My mind has learned to enjoy the intricacies of web technology and cerebral games played in the marketing world.
My clients admire my easthetic sense, applaude my creativity but happily pay 10x more when the visual is supportive of a marketing strategy.
The Long Story
Since the very beginning my most pressing concern was to see my work make my clients business grow.
At the dawn of e-commerce clarity of visual discourse and W3C compliant code was all it took to rank. My product was selling itself.
As the web started to be taken seriously by the business world the game became a little more complex and gradually the number of my clients showing up on the first page of the search engine results were becoming fewer and far apart.
Leaving The Confort Zone
So I crossed the border of my “artistic” discipline and started asking questions and… OMG!
Nobody had the slightest idea of how to promote their business "online".
A big black cloud started to bellow up at the horizon. It was clear that, if I wanted my work to be promoting itself,since my clients were not able to keep their site on page one… I was about to be forced into mud that had no as it used to, and mthing to do with design.
Really NOT My Cup Of Tea
As a young man I happened to study marketing.
I was only interested in visual arts, but that was the curricula, industrial design and marketing were part of it, take it or leave it. (1976, Milan, Italy. First ever visual arts educational institution in the country.)
Marketing, in my young idealistic mind, was undeserving of my attention due to the industry unspoken implicit, quite elastic, tolerance for deception embedded in advertising messages.
By some totally ingnored and by others tollerated in the name of "Business Success".
Financial security is of course important but not more than moral integrity, at least not on my scale. What can I say? Everybody decides how far truth can be stretched before it is not true anymore, mine doesn’t stretch much. But enough digressing.
It was with disbelief that I would always arrive at the conclusion that if my web sites were not going to be found in search results I was going to have to explain that it was due to inability of my clients to promote their business and not because the site I designed was not performing as expected.
This dilemma may seem absurd to anybody who can not remember how the web was at the very beginning of “e-Commerce”.
So let me remind you that we are still in the ninties. No Analitic, no SEO, some was aware of the importance of “keywords” and only the geekyest of “webmasters” knew how to check the “web log” on the “server”. Most business website owners whould just say: “You need to check.. what on WHAT?.
And I had my limits too. Not understanding that website ranking was not the designer’s problem was one, for example, but strangely enough
Anyway, in retrospective, I can see how if I had ignored it I wouldn’t have had the drive to research and learn some technical aspects of web production, marketing and analytic, which allowed me to grow as web professional.
Not much gets done on the side of business promotion today without a basic understanding of the implemented technologies.
Back To The Story
it took me quite some time to find enough momentum to start moving forward.
If I wanted to keep designing web sites I had to research, experiment and learn about web site promotion in order to be able to tell my web design clients what to do to rank with the Search Engine.
Since it was already ascertained that technically and functionally my sites were top of the line I asked myself "What else?".
Logically I started by looking at how the search engine evaluate websites.
As web designer my focus had been on design and front end development. In just a few years search engine software refinined its algorithms at an alarming pace. As it turned out in addition to the basic technical compliance and industry keywords, several additional rating factors came into play.
The most crucial were the necessity of informational or/and educational content, external citations (links from other websites) and social signals, all compounding into the most decive ranking factor; domain authority.
Holly crap! Web design had already become a multi-disciplinary line of work. In only three years the solopreneur web studio had gone from new to obsolete business model.
OK. I opened my mind to the necessity of a production team, and moved on.
I dove deeply into content quality analysis, meaning; information architecture, theme relevance, latent semantic indexing and how off-site content optimization and distribution was also critical. Web sites at this point had to be fed with "SEO juice" and last but absolutely not least what I call the Great Equalizer: "Social Media".
In the span of a couple of years of research coupled to trial and error experiments I found myself fully equipped to deal with marketing and branding strategies, which at this point, thanks to the new wave of active consumerism on social media, I had finally given myself permission to enjoy and practice in all its intricate mix of strategies, tactics and technology.
Why this 180° of outlook on marketing? So glad you asked. 🙂
Because nowadays you can’t fake it anymore!! Marketing Bull don’t fly no more!
If you’re not honest and real about what you make, do or sell… Soon rather than later somebody is going to tweet something and your are going to be exposed. Globally. Overnight.
Finally! Something good. The same web technology developed for social media platforms has also become a tool which allows consumers to keep the spiritually under-developed self-serving socially insensitive greedy bastards from abusing the mind-conditioning potential of the media by blowing the wistle every time a business was caught ‘misrapresenting’, a.k.a; lying about the value and/or quality of their products or services.
I am overjoyed to see consumers demand transparency about materials origins, workforce condition and remuneration and applaud their readiness to exercise partisan patronage demonstrating concrete support to those businesses which have understood that today social and environmental beneficial activities are not merely the right thing to do, but have to be considered “Added Business Value”.
In case you haven’t yet figured it out I, personally and as Local Market Group brand and business entity, embrace ethical values based on social responsibility and actively advocate the Conscious Business Movement.
To my clients my skills as search engine marketing specialist have today become much more valuable than my design flare and I have finally found an active channel through which my life learned lesson can ease others effort to find the elusive connection between a good caring human being and the responsibility to successfully run a profit oriented commercial activity.
I derive daily motivation from knowing that my work not only helps strengthen clients business finances but LGM’s brand culture also ripples out into their lives, families and community the message of social responsibility and goodwill embedded in the business daily routines.