Tips for SEM Success in the Age of Machine Learning

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Tips for SEM Success in the Age of Machine Learning

Search engines are one of the most important components of the Internet. Search engines drive internet traffic and make it possible for people to navigate the world wide web of servers that forms the internet. Without search engines, most of us would be completely lost online.

It should come as no surprise to anyone who is even remotely familiar with modern marketing concepts to learn that marketers are particularly well positioned to leverage the enormous potential of search engines. In fact, search engine marketing has become its own distinct field and is now a central pillar of many business marketing strategies.

Machine learning is a powerful new strand of technology that has already completely uprooted the way that entire industries approach their problem-solving. Machine learning is one of those technologies that doesn’t just enable us to refine our approach to certain problems, it makes things possible that would otherwise be totally unattainable.

Search engine marketers are in a unique position to levy the power of machine learning in order to further their own objectives. Those search engine marketers who are able to adapt and evolve their response while embracing the full potential of machine learning are the ones that are going to find the most success over the next few years.

Here are some tips any search engine marketer can use in order to ensure that they are taking full advantage of the potential of machine learning.

Holistic Data Analysis

At the heart of machine learning’s power, is data analysis. It is by analyzing massive amounts of data that algorithms are able to learn and train. Therefore, search engine marketers who want to take advantage of machine learning will need to learn to reevaluate their approach to data gathering and analysis. By considering data holistically, that is to say, by considering all of your data together rather than individual components of it, search engine marketers can identify exploitable patterns and other quirks of the data they would otherwise go unnoticed.

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The better you get a gathering good data, the more you will be able to exploit the capabilities of machine learning. Machine learning will only ever be as good as the data going into it, so don’t think of your data gathering and analysis as being afterthoughts or minor components of machine learning; they are absolutely essential to its proper functioning.

Set Yourself the Right Goals

When it comes to any form of marketing, be it search engine marketing, social media marketing, or marketing through any other medium, a fatal error is to set yourself the wrong goals from the beginning. In order for a marketing campaign to be the best it can be, it needs to be executed with focus and with purpose. Marketing campaigns that flounder from one vaguely defined objective to the next are doomed to fail.

If you want to introduce machine learning into your search engine marketing, it is especially important that you are always cognizant of what it is you’re trying to achieve and whether your current methods represent the best path to that goal. Similarly, when you are evaluating the quality of your approaches, you need to make sure that you are judging yourself by the appropriate measures.

The goal for one company in their search engine marketing may be to capture as many new leads as possible, in which case they will measure their success by the number of new visitors to their website, and how many of those visitors are converted into sales. On the other hand, another company might have a range of products on sale, but want to focus on shifting one in particular, in which case they will be looking at some much more specific measures of success.

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Machine learning is most powerful when it is being used with purpose; it is much more difficult to work with purpose in general if you do not have clearly identified goals. Make sure that when you incorporate machine learning into your strategies, you are doing so with purpose. You should not be using machine learning just for the sake of using machine learning, instead, you should be taking advantage of a specific and known aspect of it.

Identify Your Key Metrics

Both when you are formulating you overall approach to search engine marketing, and when you are analyzing the success of the methods that you use, it is important that you have a clear picture of what metrics you are looking at and why. The key metrics for your marketing strategy will depend upon the goals you set yourself.  This is why it is so important that you can do your marketing with purpose.

There are numerous things that machine learning can be used for with respect to marketing. Therefore, there are no particular metrics associated with machine learning. Instead, you will have to identify the key metrics that your marketing strategy has based on your individual approach and goals.

Think Long Term

The capabilities of machine learning have expanded a great deal in recent years, reflecting a continuing trend.  It seems reasonable to expect that machine learning will continue to grow at a similar pace for the foreseeable future. In fact, looking at the research being undertaken today by Google, Amazon, and other businesses who have access to a phenomenal amount of computing power, we know that machine learning will be pivotal in developing technology over the next few decades.

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You should formulate a long-term plan for using machine learning with your search engine marketing. The longer you have, and the more data you can feed into your machine, the more refined the results will be. You should always be prepared to change your use of machine learning according to developments in the field, however, this should not deter you from planning for the long-term.

Machine learning is a game-changing concept for a number of fields. Machine learning enables computers to more or less teach themselves. As long as you can set them up with a diet of steady data, they will grow and evolve. The sky is the limit with machine learning. By adding machine learning to your marketing strategy, you can take your SEM to the next level.