411 | Privacy & Inclusion (FLoC) with Carolyn Lyden of Search Engine Land


Caroline liden digs into flock zero. Click and marketing automation seat. We pissed off everyone on this one but redeeming ourselves. We're actually unpack into discussion about women in seo today on the your weekly digital marketing trends with industry trendsetting guests powered by your digital marketing. Pioneers strategic this week's featured guest is carolyn laden director of search content or search engine land and sms. Now here's your host erin sparks. This is edge of the web radio on your host errands park every week. We bring you amazing guest chat with about digital marketing tactics and news. We unpack key marketing topic for our digital marketing audience. Whether your agency or freelancer or part of a firm this show is for you be sure to check out. All our recent shows over an of the web radio dot com edge of the web is actually sponsored by your title sponsor site strategic. so we're pioneers. In the agile digital marketing methodology. Our core specialties. Our seo sem technical seo and conversion rate optimization along with omni channel media broadcast just like what you're hearing endless in watching today as a marketing results based marketing. That actually works. If you're interested in what we can do for you. Give us a call at eight seven seven. Seo for web or eight seven seven seven three six four nine three two just want to let you know a few things some housekeeping badge. Who's going to be coming up on. this show. Next few episodes are going to be talking to roger monte over at search engine journal and mark trap hagen. Be sure to check out. The reason shows that we've had Aguirre andrew optimizing as well as check out our four zero four four hundred and fourth show. Yeah we did four hundred and four shows and we actually had a contest giving The way really cool podcast and get to the best submitter of a top level. Four page on the net so we have a lot of fun. Check that out if you're interested in being part of the show. Just let us know at info at edge of the web radio dot com reminders on youtube and get notified when we post these videos. Make sure they check out our weekly news. Podcast covering the most reason digital marketing news and google updates were dropping it every tuesday to help you navigate your digital marketing week or continuing. Our news with me oberstein the indomitable morning overseen so you never know what he's going to actually say so you might want to tune in that. Well let's continue our conversation with caroline. Light it he didn't check out our first episode she. The director of search content at third door media most recently her own agency search hermit where she specifically set out to help women and be. Ipo owned businesses improve their presence and performance in she's extremely knowledgeable across all verticals in search marketing with predict expertise in content marketing strategy local search marketing and analytics. She's also a well known figure in the search community through her experiences speaking in various conferences and as a leader of popular Chats on twitter hashtag seo chat in particular and every once in a while aerobic jumps in there and and alan bleiweiss caroline truly is the matriarch there so we want to make sure that we clean house away from those robes every once in a while right caroline. Thanks so much again for joining us on our second segment here. In good knowledge about how door operates its content and and how search engine marketing land deliver content on a daily basis for us in the s you know digital marketing industry as well. We talked about some of the challenges. The third had with their at person conferences. Getting shut down and twenty twenty. I would like to pivot around because you are the editor in chief and let's talk about. Seo topics here for a second because there's so much in the water right now. It's never a dull moment inside of seo. None of her moment in the spaces of even big data in politics. We're not going to big data and politics today. But just saying this constant thomas in the water all right so topics in seo nfl. Oh see what. The heck is this thing i i know what it stands for. Federated a learning of cohort. Give me your take a boilerplate for our audience of not have come across this yet. What is epilepsy. so i'm just calling in flock for the The show many akron. 'isms there that we can you and it's part of i think google's all the acronyms around it are related to like birds and things like that which is super interesting to turtledove. Fledge in something that look like you said is federated learning of cohorts and it's essentially gul's replacement for third party cookies so they're phasing out So that they say to protect the privacy of users in the idea is that google will group users essentially into buckets based on your interest in targeting will be based on those interest buckets from now on as opposed to the cookie based targeting that we were using as advertisers before and that's users were oftentimes unknowingly participating in. I don't think a lot of times consumers understand how the data privacy aspect of surge in ads work. i think this is also given users a glimpse into what's going on behind the scenes a little bit even if they may not understand the minutiae of it. There's a lot of debate about this. And we we know that they they privacy challenges with party. Cookies have been there for the longest time. It's great it's good to actually slough off that in favor of a new way to track users however if there's a solid campaign an anti flock or flocking as the case may be able to see it's going to be the gift that keeps on giving the approach effectively hides individuals in the crowd and uses on device processing to keep the person's web history private on the browser. Google ads team tested this privacy. I type of alternative for third party cookies replacement but it's a new way to make a browser do the profiling. That third party trackers used to themselves right in in this case in boiling down your recent browser activity into behavioral label and then sharing that with websites and advertisers. So you're getting distilled and democratized as opposed to opting in. Now there's a. We had a lot of conversation on the show. Here about opt in tracking. Just let us opt into the sites that we wanted to attract and at that point in time. You're in full control of all the advertising this coming your way and on top of that you'd be even in full control of Where that advertising information right into the ecosystem but to be part of a learning cohort and have a labeling or a series of more detailed labels assigned to my behavior they may very well not know my history of my browser but they certainly are going to put me into a category. I don't particularly want to be in and see the ads. Come at me from that particular labels. Here i'm going there to choices at mix here is the route of often scenario and then being kinda labeled and we have no control over how that labeled data actually gets moved to different advertising third parties. So there's a lot of contention about this. What have you guys Written about that clears the air or actually assists in. I wouldn't say feeding the the argument but actually clearly creating the lanes of understanding. Yeah so sort of to touch on what you were saying before regarding opting in like giving being given the choice to opt in all of the not all of it but a decent amount of the news and a that's coming out seems to compare rules federated learning cohorts to apple's idea phase so in apple's latest iowa's update they're giving people essentially the option to be tracked across apps which also affects marketers. But it gives it puts the onus on the user to choose whether or not they Participate in that tracking the giving up of their data. So i think that there are Two that case said he's out there are case potentially case studies that we can see how this goes. There has been data around. How many people actually would choose to opt in. And i think last year think was around sixty percent of people said they would. I read a study recently. That said it was more recently around forty percent of people in. I think with apple's idea. Fa also you only get two lines to explain why you want to track someone so that may be a harder That may be why. That percentage has dropped but yeah the coverage around flock. I feel like it's part of this. More zoomed out. Look at data privacy and why it matters for search marketers obviously are used to third party cookies that we get even in the the tools that we were using probably previously. It makes me think of jal remember. Nacho analytics is to help people Spy on different companies. They don't have access to. And i think that was tracking people without their knowledge and using that data for their Sas purposes. so. I think there's a larger conversation that fog and the fa even now facebook with their leak of user data that will have less trust in these tech companies. Having axios did some data Release date on it but people have less trust in these companies and thinking about. What does that mean for marketers. If these are the main Ways that were reaching people in search marketing if we're targeting people on facebook retargeting targeting with search ads and so that that part of the conversation than the part of the conversation is if google is moving forward with these and then other browsers are also getting rid of third party cookies. How are we adjusting. How do we need to adjust. Do need to adjusted all google says. I think that according to their testing which they opened flock for advertiser testing at the beginning of q two but according to their own internal testing it was like ninety five percents. I want say accurate. I don't know the exact word. But it ninety percent on par with the an existing tracking. So i think marketers are like i said earlier in the last episode we were always evolving. We always have to deal with change. And so part of it is figuring out how we're going to deal with this and if it changes anything for us and in how we can adjust and then there's a communication aspect of it. Well also. How do you communicate this if your agency side to your clients of your in house to stakeholders as this is why we're changing the effects. It's gonna have this is maybe there's an evening out period where we gotta figure it out so i think there's that zoomed out view of what's really happening across the landscapes freebies tech companies in how we have to adjust as beyond marketing. Obviously it's society as a whole. I mean five hundred thirty three million. Facebook users accounts were leaked. Include names phone numbers facebook. These locations birthdays relationships. That is i mean. This is serious serious stuff and are going to as much as we. We did talk about how convenient personalized ads are in search and how consumers thoroughly enjoy the the personalized content and advertising. That comes with a price and people are more and more understanding what that price is. And they're pushing away from the table. They're not wanting to have those type of conveniences at risk of their personal identity being stolen or exploited. So we're going to be in the space. Where i i mean. I'm not a prognosticator. All i can all. I can do kind tee up the the facts as we see him and have discussions about him right. It's great to be able to see this incubation of a new way to track without tracking de personalizing behavior but at the same time. If you get yourself labeled to a degree of labeling could only imagine that the only way to be effectively marketing you've got to have such nuancing granularity into the labeling itself that by larger still getting the same result and you're still as potentially susceptible of privacy Exploits even though they don't know your name they could truly pinpoint you on geo targeting and all the other behavioral characteristics not to put on my tinfoil hat or go evil genius on. I lean more towards opt. In if i want the data if i want that type of advertising let me choose as a private consumer to be able to accept though. I'll leave it there. I think also on the search marketers side at least a lot of the feedback. That i've heard is a lot of people in advertising and ppc sort of feel like. Is google getting to decide that. They are the arbiter of privacy and data in. There's lots of talk of the walled garden. Google's the one who holds the blackhawks of data. And what does that mean. Google obviously has pushed back on that which we've made sure to try to cover in our reporting of the situation as well. So i think because the. There's this constant i guess. Back and forth between google has tech company in a search engine search marketers. Advertisers that there might be some distrust back and forth between the two so making sure that i guess there's as much clarification as possible. But i think that that's also a big. I guess topic and the search lula topic of conversation speaking of trust. Here's a great segue into our next point here. What the heck you doing with our search content. Google sixty five percent of searches in twenty twenty resulted in zero click. All right so we talked. We cover this time this last week. I think but here there's a whole nother subject matter right here of website owners and marketers Getting all aflutter because the searches that are happening all last year and continue this year are not resulting in a click going to website destination so on the surface. You'd think that well google's slurping up all the content to be able to populate feature snippets and this that and the other but that's not really the case we as consumers are asking more of our smart speakers are our search environment. We're looking for that transactional data. That has no destination. What time is it. What's the weather my directions to the airport. I don't need a destination. I don't need a website to see. And i'm trusting more and more into google because of the tech company. They're providing me this omni present answer cube right to be able to go to google and just say all right. This is what i want. It need to know so our consumer behavior just like we were talking about this last subject matter. Art consumer behavior is changing. Why are people so up in arms regarding zero click. I think honestly as with most things like the flock thing There it's less about what's actually being said more about the. I'm phrases as like possible but it's more about this cushion. Pull i think with google that a lot of search marketers have sort of related to the flock thing so We get data from rand and similar web and we say okay. Who will is this. True and google says no. But we're not going to provide you with data to necessarily refute it. And so. I think there's a frustration there that people don't necessarily maybe he hates that they that truth exists or you know i even think that maybe the sixty five percent is a large number because of course were including things like you were saying researching. What's the temperature outside. And what time is it in pacific time. I searched that all the time. I have time zone issues but i think it's more about this pushing poll between search marketers in google. So it's about the actual numbers and more about. I like to tell people it's like we wouldn't exist without grupo book gluing exist without us giving our at least as a search engine giving our websites for them to rank and serve in contents. The slippery slope is we're giving their web websites content up to google and google also deciding to lift it into feature snippets. And then there's the other contention of okay if you're actually showcasing the answer. Then there's no reason to actually go to my website. Who gave you that permission. And then on top of a the last more recent news is all of a sudden competitors are actually getting inserted into the knowledge panel of your own brand what the flock is that. So i think i think again this especially in this maybe on the more on the seo side in theory on the pbc side. Your research mortgage will disagree but google goal is to serve the user in if really wants. Google makes a ton of money by advertising so if it continues to keep you on its search engine you are more likely to click an ad and they were more likely to make money from you. And that's just how business works how it works across multiple domains even a aside from search engine so their goal is to serve the user and as users like you were saying. I don't wanna print out my mapquest directions anymore. Like i just want someone to tell me how to get there and a lot of the charter. I think i've been seeing the seo community. Once people got over the number of zero quick searches that was published. A lot of people were actually saying like okay. Yeah this is what it is and make sense because we're trying to serve the users as well. We're trying to answer questions as best as possible. And instead of focusing on what google google gives and we'll google takes away. We really need to think about take google out of it and think about what is your user want. What is your target audience warrant. And if they want the map they're going to get the map if they want the degrees outside they're going to get that instead and if they want a long form explainer that is what is going to get served up to so creating that content for where it exists and one thing i tell people i think people forget. When you do keyword research we get so caught up in the tools where checking the rankings rechecking. The keyword difficulty were checking. How many links. Nobody actually lugos it. Just google and see what comes up like is it a map is it shopping. Is it a a youtube video. Is it an info graphic intent. Absolutely ya and google. That's what google is serving select. Create that if that's what you want to rank for that specific keyword do the best version of that. Because that's what google has assuming he will when exertion for that specific all the arguments encompass a fiction about control the users evolve and what we could hold onto for click through rates ten years ago. It's nothing like that now. And on top of that the entire utilitarian aspect of the functions of google have changed the new media audience. Perspective has changed so you can't have anything. There's nothing constant. There's no guarantee of anything constant life to begin with wind the world. Do you think that that your click ratio on. Google search is going to stay the same come on plus we just put into a wormhole for a year. You better believe there's going to be a heck of a lot more activity on search that won't result into a transaction on your own buddy website. Okay rant there i do. I really do thank you all right. Hey let's let's let's Jettison some of those top. I do appreciate your contribution there. Because that's the kind of stuff. That riles everybody's cages. And it's unending it. it truly is unending at. I think there's some time digest the want to bitch and complain is actually stronger than resolving yourself. Actually make a better website you know. There's there's also that out there but let's let's fitted around to a Survey that malls ran back in two thousand twenty to finish out our interview here. They ran a survey with a six hundred and fifty two. Seo's and who participated in the survey one hundred ninety one identified as women and four hundred and sixty six identified as men men. I'm not outnumbered Women by two one in this. Seo survey and there's another key elements so just recently. They brought through female identifying seo's are more likely to freelance and specialising content. Those backup for a second here fathom what's your take on females and seo and the discrepancy there in. I think. I mean. I'm part of the women tech. Seo community shout out to reach starting matt and part of a bunch of different facebook groups even just for like women digital marketers. And i think a lot of people when they started. Seo back in the day. Tanner fifteen years ago. Many people at least evolved from developer or database or something very technical that oftentimes it was men in those industries. Not because women weren't interested but because they were essentially like closed out. It was often times of bro. Club in So that's why. I think the idea that women getting into seo through content is super interesting and it seems like it personal. Obviously it's my personal story too. So checks out for me but i know so many super smart super amazing women on the technical side who i mean. Frankly they get Not shined but when they come out with things there are men who are like all right. I know more about this topic than you. Or yeah you didn't cover this or xyz in that sort of thing. So i think sometimes women are less likely to want to put it out there. Because they don't want to have to deal sometimes with The backlash that comes from some. And it's not everyone obviously but Sometimes women are like. I'm just freelancing doing this on the side. I don't have to be a vocal member of the seo community. Or if they are. They're hurting women only seo communities where they don't necessarily receive that negative potential feedback. But i do think that. Hopefully we're moving toward more equitable balance in terms of seo. And i hope that the next survey they do reflect sad. And i think mentorship is a super big part of that women in tokyo. Had a mentorship program. I know a couple of different entities are also doing like speaker mentorship program Mentorship programs just so that different. Seo's can come out of their shells and be more vocal be more present in the community. Speak at events and things like that too so there's more visibility there as well. That was just a long rant. I know that's not one hundred percent true across the board. I know that there are definitely women in tech. Seo that there are outspoken women in it as well. So i know that's not one hundred percent the case but appreciate the around because it kind of sets up the conversation. I want to pinpoint on one particular area that you covered there. And it's this level of scrutiny. Have you seen it been used Thinly-veiled there's also a heck of a lot of pettiness out there and there's a heck of a judgement out there that is thinly veiled with scrutiny on the technical analysis that you're doing but have you seen that type of attack as thinly veiled bias against women in tech. Seo definitely i remember a couple years ago. Britney muller was Speaking out at an event. And she i don't remember exactly what is about but she's obviously a a leader in cooking about automation. Even a couple of years ago she gave a talk at moscone Even it was one of those moments that i mentioned in the last episode. Like i'm going to go implement this immediately but events. She was speaking at posted a really. Just like a thing about a sessions. She had coming up so the live event hadn't even happened and there were a bunch of big name men in the seo community who were like well the it doesn't cover this. She doesn't talk about that. And i went in to the twitter. Mentions almost like this has been hasn't even happened. You haven't even seen it. You don't even know what she's covering you're just coming into well actually like have you thought about this and that actually deleted twitter off my phone after that because i was like. I don't need this vitriol. People calling me. That i'm a bad person a for this as well but i think to your point. There is almost a level of elitism that can happen any. Seo community annoyed varies for different people. Some people think all these like big name. People who are in the seo community aren't actually doing seo there. If you're on twitter talking about it then you're not doing about it. And i. i honestly think that added a very basic level. I tried to think everyone like if you were a child. What's going on with you right now. Like where are you hurting other people like. You obviously have some not you. Finding obviously has some sort of late thirties. Or you know like only hurt. People hurt people so like what's happening in your life right don't you. Yeah or like maybe a timeout. My yourself but i mean that's how i try to think about it not naturally empathetic person. So that helps me. But i think that sort of where it stems from is maybe people have their own imposter syndrome You feel better when you're trying to like take other people down so to the community i would say like you don't have to take other people down to make yourself bigger. We not slices of the pie away from people. We can just take a bigger pie in. Everyone can be part of the picnic. But i think it's definitely in of it. And i hope it diminishes more women are in those big name positions in speaking keynoting running huge experiments in writing articles for publications. Things like that to you. Know what life's too short for this. If you're actually coming out with experiments and coming out with depositing a thought about it as a group right. seo should be the community that welcomes the scientifically minded. Especially if you're having people come in from the creative more vision quest side and they're wanting to embrace the analytics the actual mythology of testing and coding. Why in the world would you be up in arms and try to close ranks. I mean it doesn't make any sense you're wanting to have this top experimental marketing mindset. That's the convergence of what marketing and analytics gave us is the ability to test things right. You shouldn't have to have a degree in analytical. Science factually positive thought in he should not have to defend every nook and cranny of something that you bring into the table to discuss. Well that said There's a number of key points that are from the survey in t in twenty and we certainly would like to see mas. Do that again. And see how twenty twenty has come through and twenty twenty one to be able to see a shift in the data. there unintended female identify. Seo's generally charged less than men for their services. You know a group of women and seo that we wanna give a shout out to as jill whelan out any cushings and smarty lily. Ray elitists elise. She's been fantastic in the space. Susan went to grad number friends of the show here their their stellar in what they do and they put forth such great great forum discussions as well and see that demonstrates the welcoming in as opposes shuttering the board and creating our boys only club right spanking in alpha. No girls allowed. What the hell is that you know. I don't remember what the what was i. Remember the little girl's name but added news. Yeah dr. levin shoes the anti boys club or whatever what to your point about people not charging enough. That's one reason. I think if you wanna be a good ally to a woman in seo or in search marketing one way to do that. It's just tell people how much you make for your job equivalent people at your if you're in pbc and you haven't equivalent search marketer talking about salary salary. Transparency is super important in this space. I speak frequently about how to go. She ate your salary. It's something super passionate about. And i always try to make sure that. I'm targeting that talk toward women audiences because i think a lot of times i mean. Data shows that. Lynn women ask for salary increases for our employees or people in our departments where seen as charitable receiving were seen as nurturing. But when we asked for salary increases for ourselves were often seen as greedy. It's considered this double bind so Making sure that you're supporting women in your department women in your agency to make sure that they're getting paid the same as you and it goes back to the other pie thing like just because someone else getting paid equal to you for equal work doesn't take away from your salary doesn't take less or take money away from you. So that's one way to be super great ally in it. It's an uncomfortable conversation because people associate yourself worth with how much they make. But if you want to help the women around you. That's one way to do. It is to open up conversation. Talk about how much you make. I think that's one thing that i really like about the women in tech. Seo community to is women often go to these freelancing positions especially now cova d- because the along with the work the house work the domestic work also often falls to women so they ended up taking part time jobs or freelance jobs are becoming their own consultants because they can set their own hours but sometimes it also means that they're under pricing themselves so talking about how much you charge for an audit or any other seo working you how much you charge for local seo a monthly basis what that includes opening those conversations up like happened what happens in the women in tech seo community can really help sort of like the rising tide raises all boats making sure everyone gets paid for what they're worth. I really love community as you can tell i have no like stakes in it. But it's what are we started. I think has been super helpful for so many people. Even just empowering women to have these conversations because it like. I said it seems scary. Sometimes so certainly champion. What you're doing and keep that torch going. Okay there's anything that we can do to be able to help the cause. We certainly want to do that as well. It's been a pleasure speaking with you. What would you give us a tip share with our audience today. Man i think my i like my keyword research pro tip in my also pro tip to share your salary information. I guess sorta to touch on what we were talking before is if somebody is maybe not as nice to in the seo community instead of d. m. ing that are instead of calling them out or quotes heating them like or you're seeing argumentation happened. Dm people ask how they're doing. Because i think especially in this environment. People are sometimes at their wit's end they're doing a lot of work. they're doing a lot of work at home and they're doing everything from home. So instead of calling people out in the community In starting twitter wars or slack wars or whatever it is actually asked people how they're doing because sometimes they're not doing great right so extent some empathy. I'm trying to do that to be better about if i see something being like. Hey man are you okay. You need help in some way. Do you a listening ear. I think as a community We can be better for extending that empathy to people literally. Just just asking. Hey is the okay now. Does there was nothing. That really was offensive. There can. can i help you. You know buying up a coffee. Something like that. Virtually all right to work through all right so Is it true that you wrote a raging elephant a rampaging elephant through the forest in india. That is true yeah. I studied abroad in college in i. I didn't understand how it worked at the time. I feel really bad about it now but we got bought a ride for an elephant in the elephant was not having it so it rampaged through the forest it got a tree with its trunk and tried to like swat us off. Its back home. They had to bring the elephants girlfriend to calm him down. And then we walked back. And i was like i never Getting on a large animal again. And i regret this choice so please don't come after me. Animal rights people. I know now. Don't send caroline any pictures of elephants. I want i can send you the picture of the elephant like trying to stomp on me before we guys. Yes we gotta have that all right. Thank you so much. We want to make sure that we promote s advanced. Coming up june fifteenth. And say a sixteenth. Certainly wanna be participant of that. So we're going to jump in there see if we can get a ticket or two and we may even want to give away one for of our audience. How about that cuckoo alright That said oh you wanna certainly track down. Caroline on twitter at caroline liden l. y. d. e. n. Thanks so much for joining us today. It's been a pleasure and it's great to be able to meet the new editor in chief over at third door media. Keep up the good work over there all right. I appreciate it absolutely absolutely all right. Don't forget to subscribe to the edge of the web on youtube. And if you really filling up today you know what we'd really like to have you give a on how we did on this show as well. Maybe some of the others That's how we get our feedback but also keeps the algorithm working in our favor. So please give us a review today. Thanks to our sponsors sites strategic check out all the videos and much more over at edge. The web radio dot com. That's radio dot com next show. We're gonna be talking to roger monte author at search engine journal. we're talking news people all of them so from all of us over edge. Do not be a piece of driftwood. Stay well and clunky next bye-bye.

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