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2014 is here, and I wanted to join in with the leagues of digital marketing writers offering their predictions for the new year. To give things a little perspective, I’m ranking my bold predictions using the Doritos Locos Tacos Boldness Index (Doritos Locos Tacos being known for their bold flavor).
Bold Prediction 1: Google Analytics Data will move to 99% (not provided)
Google is trying to respect privacy (at least until the NSA comes knocking) and in the past 6 months alone we’ve seen keyword (not provided) creep up to over 90% of our data. I think that the natural end result is a complete keyword blackout, where the keyword is not provided in almost every case.
Boldness Rating: Just a little bold here. Two Doritos Locos Tacos out of Five.
Bold Prediction 2: Digital Marketers will need to be well versed in everything from SEO to PPC, code, writing and beyond to get jobs.
I’m seeing this more every day. People are looking for jobs and the only skill they have on their resume is SEO or PPC. Unfortunately for these poor souls, that’s just not enough anymore. Plenty of people out there understand SEO, write well, and can build websites proficiently. If you want to continue working in the digital marketing industry, you’ll need to diversify your skill-set so you can manage big projects with a small team.
Boldness Rating: I have to hand it to myself, this is pretty bold. Three Doritos Locos Tacos out of five.
Bold Prediction 3: Authorship will become one of the most important factors for Google search results.
Authorship is spreading, and trusted sources across the web are building their author rank steadily. By the end of 2014, I think it will be nearly impossible to rank for a normal search query without authorship implemented and author rank established.
Boldness Rating: Not going to lie, this isn’t especially bold. Gotta give myself my lowest rating: a single Doritos Locos Taco out of five.
Bold Prediction 4: Guest Posting will start incurring penalties on a massive scale.
Guest posting has been the go-to strategy for the entirety of 2013. On its face, it seems like a decent enough practice. You’re creating content for an interested audience, you get a single link back in your bio, it’s win win…or is it? Google is too canny for this sort of thing to continue unchecked. Matt Cutts has already said that Google is going to start looking into some guest posting practices and I’ll be shocked if guest posting doesn’t become a toxic technique this year. After all, at this point a lot of guest posts are on blogs that only post guest posts, or worse, they are paying for the privilege of posting on quality blogs. Guest posting in 2014, do it at your own risk.
Boldness Rating: Now we’re getting bold, baby! Four Doritos Locos Tacos out of Five.
Bold Prediction 5: Google will release a mysterious new algorithm update known only as “Cattle Car”. All searches now return one result and one result only: the Google+ signup page.
It’s a simple plan but that’s what makes it so diabolical! Looking for restaurants in Boston? How ’bout a little Google+ to fill your belly. Searching for relationship advice? Google+ has the time to listen to your problems. Sick and need the number to your local hospital? Hoo-boy buddy, you better pray they have a Google+ page, ’cause Google is sick and tired of you not taking their social network seriously.
Boldness Rating: Pack it in, folks! It just doesn’t get any bolder. This prediction gets an astounding five Doritos Locos Tacos out of five.
So there you have it, my bold predictions for 2014. How will they fare? Check back at the end of the year. If there’s a post here gloating, you’ll know I nailed it. If I’m strangely quiet, I was either very wrong, or “Cattle Car” is in full effect and I’ve been silenced.
Either way, see you on the other side!