Know Your Audience and other Takeaways from SMX West 2020

Last week, SMX West wrapped up 85+ sessions for hundreds of search marketers from around the country. Taking place in the heart of Silicon Valley, these digital marketing experts gathered to learn the latest trends in the world of organic search, paid search and a new track this year focused on digital commerce marketing. The two-day event was full of back-to-back workshops including sessions about the rise of digital commerce, how to future-proof your website, SEO for WordPress and how to audit your Google Ads campaigns. The conference validated many of our current digital marketing strategies and helps prepare the Foundry team to stay ahead of the competition by exploring new best practices, networking and training with industry experts. 

Three SMX West 2020 Takeaways

Throughout the entire conference, there were three consistent takeaways that stood out: know your audience, site speed matters and data accuracy is integral to success. No matter what track, session, or presenter was speaking these themes continued to appear throughout the presentation material.

Know Your Audience

Sessions focused on organic search, paid search and digital commerce marketing all focused on one common thread: know your audience. Speak to your customers where they are. Find the channels where your customers are and use your ad copy to provide value. There is no need to try and drive them to another platform– if your audience is there– provide value right there, and they will convert.

Key to this approach is understanding your audience’s intent and where they are at in the buyer’s journey. The great thing about search is that they are expressing that intent by typing in a keyword or phrase into the search engine. As marketers, it’s our job to uncover what they are actually looking for and figure out how to best deliver it.   

Site Speed

“If I had to say one metric we all pay attention to, no matter the channel…speed. Nobody wants something slow to load.” – Dana Tan, Sr. Manager, Global SEO at Under Armour. There are many different tools you can use to check your website speed and use recommendations to improve your load time. One great suggestion is to use multiple tools so that you can see recommendations to improve site performance from different audit methods and determine which ones make sense for your website. Each tool has a slightly different approach to auditing site speed, so increasing the amount of data you consider will allow you to choose the approach that makes the most sense for your organization.  

A Few Popular Site Speed Tools:

Data Accuracy

Using accurate data for strategic recommendations is crucial for success. While there are many tools to pull and analyze data, you must be careful not to over analyze and make assumptions. Data can be used to see how users behave on your website, a conversion rate optimization process can help you A/B test and iterate for increased performance and data in Google Ads can help you make strategic buying decisions for your business. 

All of these data sources provide unique value, but it’s important to focus on what matters and not let data become overwhelming. It’s also critical to make sure the way you have set up your analytics and tracking tools is proving the most accurate picture of what’s working and what isn’t. Too many companies employ a “set it and forget it” approach and find that what was accurate data is no longer providing the information needed to make decisions a few years months or years down the road. 

If these learnings and strategies from SMX West 2020 sound overwhelming, let our innovative team can help you learn more about your audience and how to reach them, improve your overall site speed and help you dive into your performance data to make strategic recommendations for your business today. Contact us to see how we help your business grow today.