How Hummingbird Marketing uses a data-centric approach to digital marketing.
Hummingbird Marketing Services is a boutique digital marketing agency in Seattle that helps small businesses grow online using a data-centric approach to digital marketing. We spoke with founder and owner Andi Lucas about her transition from print publishing to digital marketing, working for Amazon and starting her own business.
"If you have a gut feeling, you test it, and then the data better back it up to be able to continue doing it. For this, I absolutely love Statcounter."
Founder & Owner, Hummingbird Marketing Services
Starting out as a journalism major, Andi spent the first fifteen years of her career writing for print magazines. With the emergence of online news and blogs, she saw the writing on the wall for printed media and made a conscious decision to transition to online.
It felt like the print publishing industry was kind of dying. I mean, once blogging came about, and then online news, it was like no one was buying the paper anymore. No one was really buying magazines.
In 2007, Andi joined Amazon as a product merchandiser where she got to further exercise her writing chops in the digital world, focusing on email marketing campaigns and customer segmentation.
With over twenty years experience in print publishing and digital media, Andi decided to start her own business and so in 2015 Hummingbird Marketing Services set flight. Content creation is at the heart of Andi’s offering and a balance between creating content that appeals to both visitors and search engines is key.
Writing effective content that visitors can read and understand but also makes Google happy is such an important balance to get right. So while I focus on SEO, the content still needs to be relevant and engaging.
Andi provides a full-service digital marketing solution to small businesses, many of which are just starting out. This can include everything from setting up domain registration and hosting to website design and development to content marketing, SEO and ad campaign management.
Hummingbird Marketing Services Website
WordPress is Andi’s goto CMS for new website builds. The range of plug-ins available and the extensive support network means she can get the majority of projects completed with her own skill set. She occasionally supplements her own skills with the help of third party developers when the project deliverables require it.
Occasionally, I'll work with somebody who's more of a developer than I am. So, for example, we've just completely revamped a website for one of my clients and I needed some customizations to the WordPress theme. I got in touch with the theme designer and was able to commission them to do some custom work that was just a bit beyond my knowledge.
Working with small bricks-and-mortar businesses means employing Local SEO strategies to increase visibility on search engine results pages.
For Local SEO, I focus mainly on Google My Business, Bing Places, Yelp, Facebook. There's a heavier user group of Bing here in the Pacific Northwest than there would be in most places due to it being a Microsoft product.
As with many of our members, Andi keeps tabs on stats for her clients using a number of analytics tools. In addition to Statcounter, she usually installs Google Analytics and the WordPress Jetpack plugin.
I know that I can get some of this information from Google Analytics but I feel like Google Analytics is not very user-friendly. It's more difficult for me to read the reports, and they don't have the same kind of detail that Statcounter does. So while I have Google Analytics set up and I have Jetpack set up so I can quickly look at daily stats, Statcounter is filling in all the gaps for me.
Some of stats Andi focuses on most frequently in Statcounter include:
- Average daily traffic
- First-time vs. returning visitors
- Direct traffic vs. Search traffic
- Visit Length
- Bounce Rate
Keeping an eye on stats like Visit Length and Bounce Rate help us refine the message and refine how search engine results are displayed. If half of our visitors spend less than five seconds on a site then we need to look at what is missing from that page that they thought they were going to find or how the title and meta description accurately represent the page content.
Andi’s time with Amazon rooted her in a discipline of using data to either support or disprove gut feelings and she continues that discipline with her web clients.
That is kind of my way of thinking when I'm working with clients. It needs to be based on data because that's what was ingrained in me at Amazon. We didn't do anything unless the data supported it. If you have a gut feeling, you test it, and then the data better back it up to be able to continue doing it. For this, I absolutely love Statcounter.
Find out more about Hummingbird Marketing Services on their website at hummingbirdmarketingservices.com