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Old 05-16-2006   #1
sportsguy
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SEM Resources stretched too thin

Excellenty article out today from eMarketer.

SEM Resources stretched too thin

Very interesting data on what IN-House SEMs actually seem to be doing - overall.

I personally feel fortunate that in my current position, this is not really my world - I'm SEO (all facets mind you, including PPC) and that's about it. We, thankfully, have dedicated resources for everything else. In this regard, it seems I am a minority...

Duane

Last edited by sportsguy : 05-16-2006 at 02:45 PM.
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Old 05-16-2006   #2
KeithO
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I would definitely fit into that mold. Aside from being the only SEO/SEM person, I also do alot of HTML work (both contract and time/materials) and in-house tech support. a recent large project really forced my SEO/SEM duties to the back burner for a few weeks.
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Old 05-17-2006   #3
Lyndsay
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KeithO
I would definitely fit into that mold. Aside from being the only SEO/SEM person, I also do alot of HTML work (both contract and time/materials) and in-house tech support.
That definately describes me too. We all cover each other off, but I seem to be the catch-all of our little IT department - always the back up. Yet somehow *I* don't have a back up...
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Old 05-17-2006   #4
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For most companies especially in the B2B sector SEM is still not a fully utilized marketing tool. In most of the cases you will find the marketing/brand manager or the product marketing folks with generic SEM knowledge working the ropes. Why do you think that over 75% of the budget is still spent on print media?

But the landscape is changing fast; I can tell you that by the number of listings on monster for specific online marketing job postings. A few of them even at Director Level at SMB’s to large enterprises.

Majority of SEM professionals are ex-webmasters or coming from direct marketing backgrounds (i.e. after they attend at least half-a- dozen seminars on online marketing). But the good ones are those who understand the industry you are working in and are technologists themselves with degrees.

It's hard for SEM professionals to justify and get their budgets approved, so you can imagine why they have to wear the extra hats to justify their position and undertake other outbound marketing activities as well. I don't think this is necessarily bad, as it gives them the much needed experience and SEM by itself is not the answer (maybe it is for B2C- instant results and ROI). A successful marketing campaign has to be an integrated one, one that includes search, email and nurturing. Basically the more touch points you have the better it is for the brand.

I personally have defined a few KPI's to measure up against ROI for online marketing spend. These KPI’s Including site stickiness, % of returning visitors, qualified leads and a few other relevant metrics. BTW in B2B its better to call ROI as Return on Influence rather than the dreaded Investment. I just hope you can convince your VP to agree with it.

- Farees
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Old 05-18-2006   #5
ewc21
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I wouldn't be surprised with this report. As mentioned it is quite obvious that the role of a search engine marketer has been under appreciated. This could be attributed to the lack of manpower with sufficient skills to do SEM jobs so other workers from related fields such as traditional marketers or web masters are asked to do the task.
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Old 06-07-2006   #6
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No shock here

As an inhouse marketer, I manage SEM for 6 paid search accounts and two sites, 95% of the rest of our interactive ad buys, and our email marketing program (html build, testing and scheduling through our ESP) - although I count myself lucky enough to have found an Email Marketing Manager to take those duties after months of searching.

I think stretched thin is pretty indicative of everyone I know in the industry, and with the dearth of talent, it makes it difficult to get resources even when you recognize you need them. I know I personally don't have the time to train someone from the ground up, and most recent college grads don't have the experience I need.

Luckily, being stretched thin at my company doesn't mean that they're not aware of how important Search and other interactive media are - it just means we run a lean ship...
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Old 06-12-2006   #7
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do you use any bid management software?
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Old 06-13-2006   #8
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Not currently. I used Atlas back when it was Go Toast (in a previous position). We did a vendor evaluation about two years ago, and there wasn't any product that was a perfect fit, so we put it off. We expect to use a bid management product that our web analytics company offers, starting some time in Q3 or Q4 of this year.
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Old 06-13-2006   #9
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is that clicktrack's bidhero? that's the only analytics software i know that also offers bid management. i just started using adconsole. so far so good. you may want to check it out. i looked into atlas..and keyword max. i wanted a fixed price solution and both were expensive and price strcutures were confusing.
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Old 06-14-2006   #10
Mel66
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Omniture offers analytics and bid management. It's not cheap, but it's quite robust.

Melissa
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Old 07-07-2006   #11
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The article is dead on! As mentioned above, the industry is so knew and undervalued in tradition old school direct marketing companies and highly valued in pure play arenas.

I handle:
SEM
SEO all but code changes- but do page modifications, title, meta, url's, copy, and page 1st draft design (not html
Affiliates - I also managed the outsourced affiliate program

the break down is
SEM 50%
SEO 25%
Affiliates 25%
I am strected pretty thin, but where else will I get paid to-dollar to essentialy "gamble online" plus this career brings with it such high's...as to the low's that occurs when other departments spend to much, and my advertising budget is temporalry penalized.. Plus the pay me to learn!!!!

I agree with wait someone said about b2b ppc.... its a totally different monster, whereas the ad-budget aim to acquire leads, not direct sales.. its really hard to evaluate this..
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Old 07-07-2006   #12
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I don't have the SEO stuff on my plate, as we decided to outsource it, but it definitely is one of those things that there is obvious crossover.
I agree that this job is a lot of fun - stress can be high, but I suppose most everyone would say the same about their jobs!
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Old 07-08-2006   #13
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One thing that occurred to me when reading the e-marketer article is that a many companies do not have large Search Marketing teams/departments, so if you stay focused on search there is limited opportunities for advancement.

My management wants me to take on more than just search, because I've basically hit a glass ceiling. It's not hard to take on other responsibilities, if you aren't married to the search marketing world - most in-house search marketers I've met aren't search die-hards - they landed into the role. But I am.

Is anyone else dealing with the glass ceiling syndrome?
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Old 07-09-2006   #14
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We have SEO inhouse.
We pay 10% to have SEM managed out house.
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