The TM team recently had the pleasure of both attending and being part of Digital Summit Detroit – a two day digital strategies forum. Designed to transform the future of the digital commerce ecosystem, topics included Marketing, UX & Design, Search, Content, Mobile and more! Here are some of our favorite insights.

Comprehensive Search & SEO Strategies

The search and SEO landscape changes drastically – it’s simply part of our profession. With these quells and peaks comes muddled opinions and voices deciding “what’s going on” and what matters most. But what’s right?

There’s still no magic number of words that will make your pages rank higher. The quality of your page content, over quantity is truly most important. If you have pages that aren’t aiding you and providing search value – get rid of them. You’ll be better off with fewer pages that are performing higher, than keeping more content that’s not performing.

Before you do go ahead and get rid of those pages, make sure the page doesn’t house important links from external pages because you may be getting traffic to your site through them. But, if that’s not the case, you’ll have more equity in the pages you do keep than you did before by getting rid of underperforming pages.

It’s important to use keywords naturally, as well as covering the spread for what your goals and expectations. Semantic relevance matters more than keywords, regardless.

AdWords keyword planner is not giving you the information you need now, so where should you go to get your keyword data from?

  • GrepWords CPC & Search Volume Enhancer
  • Alchemy API – A company that uses machine learning to do natural language processing and computer vision for its clients both over the cloud and on-premises.
  • nTopic – The Content Relevancy Score + API
  • Searchmetrics – Enterprise SEO and Content Management Platform
  • STAT – rankings

Additional Insights

  1. Internal links are still important
  2. Semantic relevance matters more than keywords
  3. Anchor text in external links is less important
  4. Mobile-friendly sites in the top 30 has increased
  5. Links are still a highly correlated factor
  6. Less keywords in the anchor text is better
  7. More URLs in your anchor text is performing better
  8. More current content is performing better
  9. More links to deep pages is better
  10. Proportion of nofollows has increased
  11. If something is (Not Provided) so what?

Social Media & Search

There’s no impact between your social media accounts and your website rankings – but there’s clearly a correlation, that can’t be denied. In search, Facebook is most commonly ranked #5, which can help reputation management immensely.

  • High ranking websites also have a lot of Facebook activity, although quantifying this is getting more and more difficult.
  • There’s also a high correlation of Tweet activity and rankings as well as Pins and rankings

This could be due to these sites having a larger and more engaged audience. The more engaged your audience is with you, the more likely they are to seek you out on other channels other than your website.

UX & Design Roundtable

TM’s Creative Director, Tyler Fraser, was joined by Aziz Hassan from Refinery29, Michael Salamon from Lousy, and Cliff Seal from Salesforce for a Roundtable on UX & Design Trends. Watch below:

Digital Summit Detroit
The TM crew supporting Creative Director Tyler Fraser at the Digital Summit Detroit Roundtable: UX & Design Trends #TylerTalks

Insights from Seth Godin

In everything you do, in work or life, be a purple cow. What’s a purple cow? It’s something remarkable. Worth making a remark about. It’s not up to you, it’s not up to me… it’s up to the person that talks about it to decide if it’s remarkable or not.

A great example of this is Little MissMatched. They’re not selling socks, they’re selling a story! Their “megaphone strategy” isn’t, “Here, do you want to buy a pair of socks?” No, they’re saying, “Here! Buy our megaphone!”

Little MissMatched took something that’s usually mass marketed, that the masses wanted and made it special. If you’re a mass marketer, you should make something the masses want, right. But NOW, the people in the normal distribution are experts at ignoring you. The people on the edges – the weird ones – are weird because they care about things. And they’re looking for the next new thing. And you can sell to them because they actually listen to you.

What did the guy that had the first fax machine do? IT started just like Facebook and like Twitter. If you want to persist in making average stuff for average people, you have to be ready for people to ignore you. You’re in a race to the bottom. Or worse, you’ll come in second. You have to be the person that people would miss.

We are all afraid and there’s no way that we will get rid of that. The people that come up with the ideas are the ones that know how to manage that fear. If you can’t come up with a good idea then you haven’t explored enough of your bad ideas. That’s how you find your success. Almost no organization has a tribe. The real question is, “Which tribe will I serve? Which group of people will I follow?” Think about Slack. They want companies between 5-50 employees, and they’re dedicated to helping them.

Marketing is what you make now. It’s not madmen. It’s all about the promises we make and the stories we tell. If you’re a marketer you can choose to work at an organization where you’re proud of what they make… or you can make something that you’re proud of marketing.

So what is the point of all this? Singing in the rain. That’s the point. It’s about feeling UNCOMFORTABLE. And people that get really good at that are the people that will be successful.


What’s the best idea you’ve ever had?
Aside from inventing the internet?

What do you see for the next 10 years?
One of the problems we have is always thinking about ‘the next big thing’ and what are we doing or thinking about the right now? But, we need to hire the people that will set us up for the future.

Do you have any advice for managers?
Detroit is the home of managers. And every now and then you’ll find leaders. Leaders say, “I’m not sure I know how to get over there, but let’s go.” Leaders have the ability to be wrong over and over again before they make it to being right.

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