Under New Ownership

In 2004, Kelsy Anderson began a long-distance hike on the Appalachian Trail and what she thought were steps in the wrong direction, turned out to be leading her towards just the right path. In June of that year, Kelsy started Ideal Positions working from home with no equity funding and no loans. It was just her ingenuity at the kitchen counter of her studio apartment. Several months later, she cemented a working relationship with James “Shannon” Sullivan, who partnered in the company with her.

In January of 2005, they signed their first lease for a 900 square foot basement space in the Stuart School Building in Arcata, CA and hired 5 employees almost immediately. By April 2007, big changes were in store for the company. On April 1st, Kelsy and Shannon reached an agreement for Kelsy to take over Ideal Positions as the sole owner. Later that month the company moved upstairs in the same building to a larger, 2,600 square foot office space in order to accommodate a growing staff. Very soon, even this larger space was not enough to keep up with the company’s growth! Next they moved into an office space twice the size in the Arcata Technology Center. In February 2016, Ideal Positions made its last and most recent move to a brand new office space near the airport in McKinleyville. Since its inception 12 years ago in Kelsy’s home, Ideal Positions has grown to a company of 20 employees with an impressive presence in the online marketing industry.

Guiding the company from the beginning, Kelsy still remembers that feeling of getting her own private office back in 2007. In that moment, she recognized how far she had come from her kitchen counter. At the end of every workday, her favorite ritual was to go around the office locking up and turning off the lights. She would then pause to look over the office and the employees’ workstations, and bow to acknowledge the creation of this organization and the people who make up the soul of the company. This moment of pause kept her heart grateful for all the amazing people who promoted the strength and fostered the personality of the company into what it is today.

It’s the personality of the company that Kelsy enjoyed seeing most at the yearly holiday parties. These have always been an opportunity for employees to interact in a more relaxed setting— always bringing out interesting and surprising parts of employee’s personalities, as well as the most heartfelt expressions of camaraderie and appreciation for one another. Kelsy has always considered one of her proudest accomplishments in her role as business owner as someone who was able to create jobs. Having a positive impact on those employees, getting to know them, and creating a positive working environment for all staff is something that she’s thoroughly enjoyed.

Now, Kelsy has taken the next step on her journey. On October 1, 2016, Ideal Positions changed ownership, and Josh Babbitt, the SEM Department Manager who has been with the company since 2008 took the lead. Through all the trials and tribulations of the last 12 years, Kelsy came to realize that the two great loves in her life, owning her own business and being a parent to her 3 young boys, were in constant competition. Being a business owner is an intense and all-consuming responsibility that can make it difficult to be fully present in parenting young children. By deciding to sell the company, Kelsy hopes to be able to be the best parent she can to her children as well as take some time to return to her passions of hiking, yoga, and visiting friends and family. Since she regularly only had a few hours every week “off the clock”, she plans to spend this new time nurturing her family and her soul.

What allowed her to be able to take this next step is knowing that the company will be in the very capable hands of Josh Babbitt. Kelsy describes Josh as one of the finest people she knows. In her many years of business, she has developed the ability to discern between someone that’s the real-deal and someone who is not. Josh is the real deal. He is the last person to take credit and the first to recognize others. His innate leadership ability makes people want to work hard for him and be on his team because he earns their respect through his hard work, humility, and competence. Kelsy fondly remembers a time when Josh asked for a personal day off. As someone who regularly works some of the longest hours and rarely takes time off, the request was out of the ordinary. But it was the premier of the new Star Wars movie and Josh could not miss this “once in a lifetime event.” It is this similar interest and passion in all things technological that sets Josh apart. He is a “technical wizard” and Kelsy has the utmost confidence that he will continue to stay two steps ahead in this ever-changing industry. Kelsy and everyone at Ideal Positions are extremely excited to have Josh take on this important role and cannot wait to see what the future holds!

Updates to Google AdWords’ Reporting Intervals!

 

Last week, Google announced improvements to the AdWords system: more frequent updates of account data! Google has stated that clicks and conversions are usually reported in fewer than three hours, though other data may take six hours or more.

This is a fantastic change for search marketers and advertisers alike! In the past, it’s taken days or even weeks to get certain critical types of data from your Google AdWords reporting—most notably search query data. After this change, search marketing professionals will be able to build negative keyword lists more quickly, which enables more efficient search query optimization. Long story short, your ads can now be served for more relevant searches faster than ever!

Keep in mind, some data is still only calculated once per day. This includes impression share, auction insights, and top movers data. Also, some data may update after the fact to adjust for invalid clicks or if a conversion is logged after a delay from the initial click.

To determine what time of the day you may expect to see updates for different metrics in your time zone, consult Google’s support article on the subject here.

Sources:

https://support.google.com/adwords/answer/2544985

Choosing the Right Search Engine Marketing Agency

 

This industry exists because many—if not most—small businesses have neither the time nor expertise to cultivate their own optimized Pay Per Click campaigns. There’s no shame in it: hiring an expert is a cost-effective means of increasing your incoming business so you can focus your efforts on making profit! Unfortunately, many small businesses have been let down by disreputable agencies and individuals in the past who promise you the moon, and have a harder time trusting someone to do better by them. Before hiring an agency, it is always important to educate yourself and learn how to vet your options to avoid scams and subpar service.

Above anything else, the most important qualification for an agency is Google Partner status. Earning this status has stiff requirements. To quote Google, “your business is healthy, your clients are happy, and you follow Google best practices.” Google Partners are held to the highest standard and have access to resources that small businesses running their own AdWords campaigns do not.

You can view Ideal Positions’ own Google Partner page here.

Google has stated clearly that no one can guarantee a #1 ranking  on Google. Beware any business that claims they can put you in the first position 24/7! Reputable agencies need not rely on empty promises, and skilled agencies will practice strategic bidding over “ego-bidding” to get the highest return on investment. (Which is why Ideal Positions has a team of dedicated Campaign Strategists whose goal is to maximize your profits!)

If an agency is anything less than transparent with you, that is a red flag: take your business elsewhere! The unique brilliance of digital advertising is that every ad viewed, every link clicked, and every dollar of ad budget spent is accounted for. Pay per click is precision marketing, and any good business will share data with you so that you know your funds are being used wisely.

For further in-depth advice from Google on vetting third-party partners, we strongly recommend you look here.

When determining which agency to work with, you need to ask the hard questions: Are your account managers individually certified? Will my account have a dedicated manager? Are your accounts structured to adapt to seasonality? Do you implement call-tracking and lead attribution in Google Analytics? Do you offer website development and consulting services to your clients to maximize conversions? An established agency should be able to answer all these questions with a resounding, “Yes!” At Ideal Positions, of course, we offer these value-added services and many more besides.

Lastly, Google recommends going with experienced companies. Ideal Positions, for example, has been managing Pay Per Click campaigns for over ten years, and our team of Google AdWords Qualified Individuals have over sixty years of combined experience. Many agencies are faceless and impersonal. Not so with Ideal Positions. On our Staff profile pages, you can view every individual staff member’s Google badges and, while you’re there, you can get to know us a little better! We are a people-oriented business, and we really want you to know both who we are and what we’re all about.

If you have any questions about our company, we would love nothing more than to demonstrate what we can do for you and earn your patronage! To read what other clients have written about us, please give our Testimonials directory a look here!

 

Via:

http://www.google.com/adwords/thirdpartypartners/

https://support.google.com/partners/answer/3125774?hl=en

 

Artisanal Search Engine Marketing

 

Many digital marketing agencies outsource the human element to automation software to cheaply build and manage their Pay Per Click (PPC) campaigns. This hasty philosophy deprives campaigns of well-needed human expertise and insight. Advertising is, above all, a psychological effort: a handcrafted campaign is a smart campaign.

Automated bidding systems regularly fail to discern search intent from queries. Because they can’t keep abreast of current events and the by-the-day changes search engines implement to their algorithms, “set-it-and-forget-it” campaigns are more susceptible to unexpected shifts in the search ecosystem. One sea change can end up drowning your advertising dollar!

At Ideal Positions, our campaigns are steered by seasoned, qualified professionals who work closely together to bring multiple perspectives to every account. Three distinct departments are deeply involved in every account: Customer Service Representatives, Campaign Strategists, and SEM Team Members.

Your relationship with our account management teams begins when you are first contacted by one of our Customer Service Representatives, who introduce our service and demonstrate how crucial it is to work with a trustworthy and experienced digital advertising agency. Our CSRs research the businesses we work with to determine whether you are an ideal fit for our services, and they have the expertise to determine an optimum advertising package for your needs.

When we enter into a business relationship, we introduce you to your own assigned Campaign Strategist. Members of this department maintain close consultant-client relationships, building on the value established by our sales team. Your Campaign Strategist is your new best friend, your go-to contact at Ideal Positions, the person in your corner who will come to know your business’ needs and how we might best exceed your expectations. Together, we develop and implement powerful Internet marketing strategies unique to your business!

Finally, our SEM Team Members work behind the scenes as technicians—essentially, our grease-monkeys!—attentively minding the nitty-gritty of accounts, tweaking and torquing campaigns to maximize the profitability we deliver to our clientèle. Every member of the Campaign Strategist and Search Engine Marketing Teams are Google AdWords Qualified Individuals and Bing Ads Accredited Professionals, and they bring that knowledge to the worktable so that we will continue to earn your business each month!

PPC advertising is both an art and a science. With the combined artistry and technical know-how of our diverse staff, we are certain to have greater success in navigating the turbulent sea of internet marketing together.

Net Neutrality Win!

 

Good news, everyone! We’re excited to announce that, today, the US Federal Communications Commission approved a set of new regulations in support of net neutrality!

These regulations essentially aim to prohibit Internet Service Providers (ISPs) from creating “internet fast lanes” (also called paid prioritization) to broadband and wireless access. This will include rules against blocking legal content and throttling traffic. In brief, the FCC is re-classifying the Internet as a public utility. The Internet is regarded as a common good for all, and its user base is a protected interest. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler is quoted as having said, “The Internet is simply too important to allow broadband providers to be the ones making the rules.”

There has been a lively debate for several years over whether a more regulated Internet will stand to benefit “the little guy” or to benefit large telecom companies, and whether this will level the playing field or discourage private investment in Internet infrastructure in the future. This FCC decision is in many respects a work in progress, and it is certainly the beginning of a larger legal battle. As a company that relies upon fair, equitable access to the Internet to do our business, Ideal Positions supports the open Internet, free of gatekeepers standing between small businesses and the customers we rely upon.

Via:
http://www.fcc.gov/document/fcc-adopts-strong-sustainable-rules-protect-open-internet
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/02/26/fcc-net-neutrality-ruling_n_6761174.html
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/02/26/net-neutrality-fcc-vote_n_6761702.html?1424973788
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-switch/wp/2015/02/26/the-fcc-set-to-approve-strong-net-neutrality-rules/