Unfortunately, the advertising industry has been screwing us all. Google and Facebook have onlone monopolities and yet fail us both as users and as consumers, repeatedly.
Most people do not think of Google as an advertising platform, but that is exactly what it is. Search is there only to show you advertisements. Google phones, Chrome OS, even the Chrome (and Chromium based) web browsers exist specifically as a consumer data collection and advertisment publishing platform.
Facebook is also a large corporate advertisement publishing and user data collection platforms. That is, Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, WhatsApp and any other of its social 'media' and networking platforms are there simply to collect user data, then use it to show you the kinds of ads that will push your b uttons and get you to click a sale button, all based on the data they collected about you.
Each of these online corporations are available on the web and through apps on a variety of platforms specifically to learn how to sell to each user based on their individual psychological profile saved in each person's private user data.
Google watches how we browse, what we click on, how we respond to different stimuli and then uses the successes to its advantage to sell each individual more. You would think that since Facebook is just a website or app that it wouldn't do the same thing, but in the user agreement, all members give it the right to track them through their browser history and/or through their device app usage.
If this doesn't sound purely evil to you, then something is wrong. And the reason that these companies can get away with such hellacious sinfulness is because these and many other such corporations lobbied and repealed privacy protections for everyone, including vital long standing protections such as net neutrality.
But the problem doesn't go away because advertising is abused, or because marketing is harder now. And that is the whole changing issue. It changes daily based on what we learn. We still need Google to send us traffic, so we optimize our website for search using common sense understanding of how search engines work and what they look for. Then, we try to deliver thoise essentials.
We still need social networks, but we try to avoid the bad actors. Look at it this way, Facebook was finally fined for the very first time and it was a record $5 Billion USD for failing so drastically at protecting their own loyal user's privacy. But that was a slap on the wrist and only represents less than 10% of the first half of 2019 revenue. Government is simply failing us and will continue to do so because the current batch of inept politicians in office whom refuse to do the work required to make the internet safe and hold business accountable for the havoc they still set afire in a blaze that is overwhelming us all.
Yet, there are companies who do business through Facebook and are so closely associated with it that when Facebook does start feeling the backlash for a security breach every other month, a user experience that dismisses their own users as nothing more than dollar signs as well as overlooking their integrity by not acting honorably and further making everything that helps Facebook generate a personal portfolio of private data on every single member absolutely impossible to opt-out of (even deactivating a Facebook account will not do it). This is just plain sin. And once the United States of America citizenship does get wind of how Facebook manipulates its customers (both individual and business membership), the brands that have associating themselves with Facebook will have a great deal of bullcrap to spin, and cowpies don't frisbee too far (& it certainly does not fly).
So, not only do we need to follow Google's current website design, development, promotion, marketing and optimization guidelines (since they are the traffic cop for close to 80% of internet searches), when advertising online we have to stay out of the current bad neighborhoods of today as well as the ones to be,
For this reason, we use a traditional, common sense approach to marketing. And this common sense approach requires that we educate our clientel who are professionals, entrepreneurs, small businesses and corporations about what they can do internally, as well as traditionally and online, to enhance, promote and grow their own brands successfully.
The truth is that this business is always changing. Google is always rewriting its rules of design and accessibility, and the best single marketing message your brand has, its own website.
Don't make the mistake of using Facebook as your online presence, the USA is about to grow-up very fast out of a necessity to do so because technology has left the difference between right and wrong behind. The law has simply not kept up and instead of protecting the American people, these politicians are stuffing their coffers full of cash from the corporations that are mining our data and using it against us.
I, Doug Peters, the owner of Symbiotic Design, do not want to be associated with this undo cruelty forced upon us by corporate America and thier lobbyists. This will become the ultimate way to hurt your company name and any, possibly all brands associated with it. And mark my words, that day is coming much sooner than most expect.
Yet, you have read all this and we have not arrived at anything about what marketing really is. Because marketing is very different from advertising. It isn't just the careful selection of your message and where you promote it, it is enhancing that message so that people will identify with it.
Certainly, your website should cover all aspects of your marketing message, but the core of it needs to be quickly identified as relatable by a majority of your potential and returning customers (and/or clients). That is the art of marketing, but it also requires a science of customer care for your brand.
Remember, your brand is everything. I cannot stress that enough. In my case, I have many brands, many businesses will. But how well your company is branded by the community it serves will be the reputation that either assists or hinders your journey and growth as a company, a name, a brand.