002: indistractable – Amazon D2C – 5 million Google searches – How much content – Google vs. DejanSEO

August 27, 2019

Last week’s marketing “news” article was published only on Monday this week – not perfect, but done. Starting this week, let’s try a rolling post, to be published early-/mid-week, then updated as interesting topics come up.

So here are my main topics for the Week 35 (August 26.-30., 2019):

» Monday, August 26.: Nir Eyal pre-launches indistractable, the antidote to his own Hooked
» Tuesday, August 27.: TechCrunch article: How to use Amazon and advertising to build a D2C startup
» Wednesday, August 28.: BACKLINKO study: 5 million Google search results
» Thursday, August 29.: Wil Reynolds @ Seer Interactive: “How much content should my client produce?
» Friday, August 30.: Google vs. DejanSEO experiment, continued

Monday, August 26.

Nir Eyal pre-launches indistractable, the antidote to his own Hooked?

Not really news-news but only today I’ve found out details (via Nathan Chan’s Foundr podcast with Neir Eyal, dated August 8.), about Nir’s launching of indistractable. That might raise some eyebrows, since he also wrote Hooked.

1. What is Hooked?

A must read for everyone who cares about driving customer engagement.” — Eric Ries, author of The Lean Startup

The book is a field guide into building customer engagement strategies that stick; and the behavioural techniques behind them.

We’re talking about a four-step mechanism:

  1. Trigger: cue the user to take action, and tell him/her what to do next “by placing information within user’s environment“or “through associations stored in user’s memory“.
  2. Action: always driven by a motivator, such as seeking pleasure, hope or social acceptance.
  3. Variable reward: “must satisfy users’ needs while leaving them wanting to reengage with the product”. Pretty much what a slot machine does. Or Facebook.
  4. Investment: is linked to the anticipation of rewards in the future. If you hadn’t put time and “effort” into a product, then it would be much easier for you to stop using it. The investments “enable the accrual of stored value in the form of content, data, followers, reputation, or skill”. It increases the chances that you’ll go through The Hook over and over again. 

(Now there’s a looong discussion we can have about our not-full-minded consumption of stuff, from comfort food to social media).

Is this a cynical approach? Maybe. To quote Nir’s printed words: “What Are You Going to Do with This?


2. Can one be indistractable?

If you value your time, your focus, or your relationships, this book is essential reading. I’m putting these ideas into practice.” — Prof. Jonathan Haidt, author of The Righteous Mind

If you clicked-and-listened to the podcast above, then you’ve heard Nir: “the question with Indistractable is how do you control your attention and choose your life? I had this question because I found that my attention was being controlled in ways I didn’t always like.”

Sure, you do put your phone away when working. Maybe even turn-off all notifications. Maybe (if you’re a pro) disconnect all incoming data. But you still have the itch, right? So here are some other four steps to make it go away:

  1. Understand and master internal triggers. You don’t comfort-eat because ou’re hungry, but because you want something to go away. 
  2. Make time for “traction” (as opposed to dis-traction). In plain English: plan your day, decide what’s absolutely “in” and what stays out. 
  3. Hack back at distractions: now you can finally activate “flight mode”.
  4. Make a pact: if I don’t do this, I will pay by doing that. “Pay” €50 because I got a pizza after midnight? That might just work.

The main point? “Decide […] between traction and distraction. Traction is anytime we do what we want to do, things that move us forward in life, that are consistent with our goals, things that we do with intent. The opposite of traction is distraction, right? Anything that we do without intending to do it. The fact is if we don’t learn these techniques, then we will constantly be swayed.


3. …But Nir, are you trying to hook us again?

It is only funny that indistractable‘s prelaunch webpage includes some goodies to get you Hooked.  As of today, you can get a “bonus 80-page workbook full of exercises and activities to help you become indistractable“.

Let’s just call it good marketing practice and get the book, shall we?

Tuesday, August 27.

TechCrunch article: How to use Amazon and advertising to build a D2C startup

If you’re selling on Amazon, you will find TechCrunch’s article helpful. If you also have a VPN, you will be able to actually read it (since TechCrunch is only available inthe US, Canada, UK, France, Germany, Spain).

Q: do I have friends in these countries, with access to TechCrunch? May I ask you a favour?

On to the article snippet, here’s the table of contents:

How to find product-market fit
How to get started with Amazon
Maximizing sales on Amazon

Image stack
Bullet points
Backend details
Browse nodes
A+ content

Getting started with Facebook ads
Growing sales after you have product-market fit
What tools and technology to use for your D2C business

  Interesting enough to get yourself a VPN?

Wednesday, August 28.

BACKLINKO study: 5 million Google search results

Brian Dean (aka BACKLINKO) hits it again with a monster-study regarding CTR (Click-Through-Rate): “We analyzed 5 million Google search results to better understand organic click through rate.

Quick summary of results:

1. Landing the #1 result in organic search brings you an average CTR of 31.73% – which is 10x more than the average CTR for the #10 result.

2. There are some sweet spots on the results list (#3 and #5) that have higher CTR than they should. This is might be because of various screen “folds” – the bottom visible part of a screen – beyond which users might not look.

3. Including questions into your titles brings average CTR from 21% to 35%. That’s “only” 14.1% in absolute terms, but 65% in relative terms!

4. Writing yout title tags within 15 to 40 characters brings 8.6% higher CTR compared to those that are shorter or longer.

5. Including a legit keyword in the URL brings 45% higher CTR than URLs without keyword.

6. Using Secret-Powerful-Ultimate-Great-Perfect-Best-Insane-Amazing “power words” in the title decreases the CTR by 13.9%.

7. Meta descriptions *do* increase CTR with 5.8%.

So here’s the link to the study again. Enjoy, and don’t miss to read the comments!

Thursday, August 28.

Wil Reynolds @ Seer Interactive:
How much content should my client produce?

I love people who experiment and Wil is one of them. He can talk, so he has a Youtube channel, and now he talks about “how much content is enough”.

TL;DR here’s the video, and here’s the summary:

1. Using “monthly search volume” to document a decision is passé. Try: “here’s how much money this oportunity can make you”. (Disclaimer: you’ll need some extra software for that.)

2. Clients’ plans to produce the ideal body of content are (almost) never executed – usually because it’s too much. So better switch to agile content production and management instead, and decide what / how much content is absolutely needed.

3. Wil’s experiment: look at 266.000 keywords / 171.000 conversions from paid (CPC) / $ 9.760.000 spent / 188.000 competiting domains / 877.500 pieces of content – and find “which domains have produced the fewest pieces of content, to get the most conversions“.

4. By filtering the data, he was able to narrow it down to two domains, with similar total conversions: one produced 14 pieces of content, the other 36. “Why would you want to produce double the content for the same conversions?

5. He then drills drills down to “Let me show you that one piece of content that you don’t rank anywhere in the top 10 (which means you have no visibility), where a competitor is in top 3, where you’ll be getting a lot of conversions […]“. – That single URL covers 57 keywords in top 5 and produced 2368 conversions. Wow.

6. If you want to pick on someone’s URL, “pick on brands smaller than you. […] When you find smaller competitors who are beating you out, who don’t have your brand authority – that’s the people you want to look at.

Conclusion: how much pieces content of do you need? One, as long as you make it good (which means you might need to invest a bit).

Thursday, August 28.

Google vs. DejanSEO experiment, continued

Last week I was talking about DejanSEO getting a massive penalty from Google, so he started a uniques experiment:

A. Delete all the old pages of the existing website (dejanseo.com.au), except the homepage.
B. Start a new domain / website (dejanmarketing.com) using all the content of the old one.
C. Ask people to migrate their links to the new content. 

One week after, here’s an update:

1. Penalty cause still unknown; Google didn’t reply to the reconsideration request.
2. When searching the brand name (new=old), Google ranks the new domain on page 3-5.
3. The old domain is still ranking, either with the homepage or deleted / inexistent content (404), often on higher positions than before!
4. Google shows DejanSEO’s competition snippets next to his branded name. Fun fun fun. 

Half-time conclusion: “deleting a website makes it rank better got it“.

Enjoy the weekend & see you next week with a new website!