When your business exists to sell the work of unknown artists, being seen is essential. But with the proliferation of online retailers in Australia today, standing out from the crowd has become an increasingly difficult proposition.
Art teacher Nancy Donaldson says she founded Art Lovers two years ago with the aim of supporting underrepresented artists. In her own life as a teacher, she has seen many students drop out of the arts due to the difficulty of making a living.
âWe were seeing a lot of really talented people who just aren’t seen or chosen by galleries,â Donaldson said. Marketing director. âYou have to produce at a certain level for a gallery to accept you, and for a lot of people, art is a part-time activity. ”
But while the online world offers theoretically unlimited exhibition space, it’s pointless if no one can find what you’re selling.
Donaldson first turned to keyword research advertising, but as a small business it didn’t have the budget to compete effectively and therefore was constantly outbid. So she turned to Melbourne-based direct marketing agency King Kong to help make a difference using content, search engine marketing and retargeting.
King Kong founder and chief growth officer Sabri Suby says the strategy developed for Art Lovers reflects the transformation underway in search marketing since its inception 20 years ago. One of the main changes was to be more targeted in the keywords that art lovers were buying.
“As you do search marketing you have to start thinking more and more of not just vanity keywords like ‘line art’, but specific artist names and people searching for long keyword strings. “, explains Suby. “In the beginning, people were only looking for one or two keyword queries, and now they put five or six keywords in search queries.”
Determine the intention
Another critical factor is understanding which research actually carries real intent that could be converted into sales.
âIf someone searches for ‘art store’ there is very little buying intention behind the keyword, even if they get the vast majority of searches,â Suby explains. âHowever, if someone goesogle ‘art shop Melbourne’ you know there is buying intent behind it because they are thinking about where to go and look.â
While search engine marketing may be 20 years old, Suby says it continues to evolve rapidly. This is in part due to changes made directly by Google, such as removing the ability to target an exact phrase.
âGoogle AdWords as a platform today is completely unrecognizable from what it was six months ago,â says Suby. âNew features are constantly being rolled out in customer campaigns, and unless you really watch those campaigns every week and daily, there’s a lot of waste that happens. ”
Suby says that a particularly useful tool now is Answerthepublic.com, which pulls aggregate search data from Bing and Google.
âYou can look at what that keyword mind map looks like in a visual representation and look at all the questions people ask,â Suby explains.
Through his collaboration with King Kong, Donaldson claims that Art Lovers saw a return on investment of $ 6 for every $ 1 spent.
âWe could see that the advice was invaluable, especially for newcomers like us, and it brought things to our attention that we had missed,â said Donaldson. âRight now we have 60 words and 50 in the first, second or third place, and 56 on the first page. So the agency has done a very good job of bringing those words into this. ”
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