Written by Tomash Devenishek on January 11, 2013
in Strategic Marketing

Every week we see lots of interesting ideas and tools that help inform our strategic process and improve our smarts. We’ve decided to publish a weekly digest in order to help readers of the Ariad Ideas blog stay up-to-date on the latest developments in marketing strategy.


This week’s reading lists includes:

Digital Strategy:
– 6 Digital Trends for 2013
– Details make or break a website

Content Strategy:
The new SEO

Shopper Marketing Strategy
Beauty and the e-commerce beast

Also catching our eye
4 additional articles

6 Digital Trends for 2013

David Armano’s predictions for 2013 can be strung together in three sentences (trends in brackets). Content will be a company’s most important asset (Content Economy) and much of it will be consumed through mobile social channels (Smobile). The self tracking or quantified self trend will continue to pick up steam (Cyborg Central) especially with more data collection devices like Nike fuelband (Sensory Intelligence) resulting in a plethora of data but missing the tools or wherewithal to make sense of it all (Data Surplus, Insight Deficit). That…and social platforms are going to try to get you to buy stuff directly on their platforms (Social Commerce). One quibble with Armano’s assertion “gamification has lost some of its luster, taking a backseat to useful functionality.” The problem with gamification was that people applied bad game design to their programs. Good game design principles or “gameful design” can create better utility.

Next year in digital

Further reading:
Check out these additional digital trends in a report produced by JWT (thanks Neil and Tracy for this find).


Building a website is a lot of work. As digital projects become more complex it’s important to get the upfront work right and answer the seemingly simple yet devious questions like: Why are we creating this site in the first place?

Believe it or not the sites purpose, or value proposition, is often overlooked when rallying the troops and writing briefs. Blogger Zach Bulygo says it nicely, “A website needs to tell visitors in a couple of sentences or less why their business is the best choice for the visitor, instead of sending a bunch of different messages that won’t be received.” As Zach further argues, the value proposition is brought to life in the small details throughout the site: the tone of the content, the use of contextual help, the use of real-estate on the homepage.

Zach’s full post on the importance of establishing your sites value proposition.


Those working in SEO pay close attention to the 500 or so variables that go into Google’s Search Algorithm, engineering sites to meet each of the specific criteria: tweaking headlines, stuffing pages with keywords and ensuring a sizable number of links point back to their website. But as SEO expert Jason Myers argues, this might be all for naught. By weeding out  the bad apples, Google forces website owners to create real value for users who take the time to visit. For those looking to game the system, their chances of succeeding are dwindling. Instead it’s time to roll up our sleeves and start producing valuable content. Stuff people want, use and share. Creating content takes time, money and thinking. And requires a strategy to ensure you are creating content that helps users.

Read Jason’s full post.

Further reading:
Learn more about the elements of valuable content.
The importance of utility in creating valuable content.


Amazon started as a bookstore because books were something a consumer didn’t need to see or try before buying and they shipped relatively easily. Now Amazon sells everything…including beauty and personal care products. And what is the beauty buyer looking for online? According to a report produced by ATKearney, a great price on her favourite brands. What she isn’t looking for…advice…she’s in shopping mode not consideration mode.

Check out the full ATKearney Report

Also catching our eye…

> Content vs. service in media & education
> Brand Measurement: Analytics & Metrics for Branding Campaigns
> Crafting Contagious Content
> Social Media and Content Predictions for 2013

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