Stephen Tornquist of Marketing Sherpa breaks down search marketing at DM Day

tornquisttv.jpgStefan Tornquist delivered the luncheon keynote at DM Day, a half-day direct marketing conference held Thursday by the British Columbia Association of Integrated Marketers at the Westin Bayshore. Tornquist, a research director at Marketing Sherpa, explained to an audience of marketers that paid search (the highlighted, paid-for results at the top of a Google, Yahoo or other search engine pages) is one of the strongest ways possible to market products online. Search engine optimization is the other very effective method for bringing people to products, while traditional methods, such as television and radio advertising, lag far behind. Direct mail is losing ground, though it’s by far the most used method of marketing at present.

Tornquist also pointed out that search engine news sites such as Google News are increasing the effectiveness of PR, since links in a news release can now be tracked and analyzed. In fact, analysis and testing is one of the most important and under-appreciated methods of effectively retaining people on sites, he said, and added that improving conversion efficiency and retaining users through methods like increasing relevance through personalization and removing navigation on landing pages were important factors to consider when marketing online.

Tornquist also said Google is its own category, and acts as a “centre of gravity”, and is only getting stronger, especially in niche areas such as government and education.

Finally, Tornquist emphasized that mobile marketing now has enough of an audience to justify mobile campaigns, but it hasn’t yet hit the tipping point where everyone is knowledgeable enough to produce or consume that marketing on a regular basis. He stressed building that expertise now because soon people and firms will regard mobile as an important part of their marketing plan.