David A. West

Senior Internet Consultant & Professional Speaker

Canadian Social Media Advisor & Search Engine Strategist


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David West

If it Can’t Be Measured, Does it Pay? What to Spend Your Marketing Budget On

Thursday, October 15th, 2015

shutterstock_143045899The world of marketing offers a lot of options for making your business known. Particularly with the rapid development of digital marketing tools, it can be challenging to decide which investments will give the best results. Let’s run through some of the major options so that you can get a clearer idea of what’s better for you.

Traditional vs. Digital

Traditional forms of marketing such as print and TV rely on a flow of information in one direction: toward the audience. This concept has been given a radical overhaul since the internet came into common use because our methods of communicating have become more mutual and direct. Digital marketing techniques such as SEO and social media therefore allow the marketer to be in two-way dialogue with the customer and their behavior. The results are also far more measureable and actionable than traditional methods. This will make it easier for you to have a handle on whether or not you’re spending wisely!

Investing in Your Demographic

It’s important to know the distinctions between traditional and digital forms of marketing because one may be a more fitting investment for your business than the other. This often comes down to a matter of your client demographics, particularly age and access to technology. Generally speaking, customers that are less accustomed to digital channels of communication will be reached more effectively through traditional forms of marketing. Meanwhile, if you are hoping to make clients between the ages of 18-29, or even 30-49, investing both time and money in good SEO and social networking is critical.

Keeping an Open Mind

Despite this, anything can change in the world of marketing. Adoption of the internet and other new technologies by the 65-75 age group, for instance, has been rising among higher income brackets in recent years. It’s important to keep an open mind and remember that investing strategically in several forms of marketing may be wiser than depending only on one. Consider not just who your business is meant to reach now but who it may need to appeal to in the future!

David A. West has an extensive background in both traditional and digital marketing techniques. If you’re trying to keep up with today’s ever-changing marketing climate, he is here to help. For information on consulting or seminars, feel free to get in touch at (403) 456-0089 today!

To Advertise or Optimize? The Difference Between Adwords and SEO

Thursday, October 1st, 2015


A good digital marketing plan will make your site both searchable and recognizable, but a great one involves a clear understanding of the tools at hand. For example, Adwords and SEO are the mainstays of search engine marketing, but what’s the difference? I’ll run through a few examples to give you an idea.

How They Work

The functional difference between Adwords and SEO is pretty straightforward. Adwords allows the business owner to purchase keywords relevant to their industry so that advertisements leading to their website will be visible in search results. Search engine optimization is a process that involves optimizing the quality and searchability of your content so that your site appears “organically” in Google’s search results as early in the listings as possible.

Pros and Cons

Generally, Adwords involves a more immediate monetary cost while SEO requires a deeper investment in time and effort. Although Adwords will potentially provide quicker results — and you won’t be charged unless the ads actually generate traffic — SEO has been found to be more rewarding in the long term. The majority of clicks nowadays comes in the form of organic traffic rather than ads, partly because many people prefer to discover and engage with content autonomously rather than be told where to go. This is one of the driving principles behind inbound marketing.

Key Considerations

Each tool relies on different processes and skillsets. An effective ad campaign will require a good budget and extensive knowledge of keywords. The SEO of your site, on the other hand, depends on more intuitive factors. These will include how engaging, informative, and key-word relevant your content is, as well as the overall quality of the user experience.

Many find that combining the two in a way which focuses on the strengths and resources of their business is a great way to go. However, the rise of content-driven SEO has caused a shift away from dependence on ads in recent years. An important consideration to make is that how a user finds you in the first place is as much a part of their experience as your content itself. Keep in mind how this may be affected by excessive advertisement!

Want to learn about today’s best approaches to online marketing? David A. West has the expertise you need to get the visibility of your company where it should be. Get in touch today at (403) 456-0089 for information on consulting or seminars!

Pick Your Battle, Pick Your Network: Where’s Your Social Audience?

Tuesday, September 15th, 2015

Pick Your Battle, Pick Your Network: Where’s Your Social Audience? - David A. West - Calgary Social Media Speaker You may remember from my blog on social networking and spamming that when it comes to content and social networking, quality will very often beat quantity. Similarly, knowing where exactly your best audience may be is better than spreading yourself too thin. Here are just a few ways you can narrow in on that sweet spot and ensure that you’re reaching the best people.

Know Your Audience

First and foremost, it’s crucial to have a detailed picture of who is most likely to engage with your business. Gender, age range, average income, or device and operating system preferences are all examples of things to keep an eye on. Once you have a good grip on this data, correlate it to the demographics of each social network. It’s also wise to be aware of not only your key audience but also your potential audience. Who does your main demographic associate with? The networks that these two groups use may not always be the same so there is often potential in each one.

Know The Networks

While they connect and integrate with one another in many ways, every social network can be considered its own environment. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or Instagram, different types of users will engage with different networks for varying reasons. This goes hand-in-hand with knowing your audience and affects which network is best for each industry. It’s been found, for instance, that Pinterest occupies nearly half of all sharing by iPad users. Therefore, if you review or manufacture accessories for tablets, this platform may be one of your greatest assets.

Numbers and Common Sense

It’s also important to maintain balance between an intuitive understanding of where your audience is and what the hard data will tell you. If you’ve already developed a close relationship with your community and have a good feel for what networks they use, it’s great to use this instinct to your advantage. However, it’s vital to remember the utility of actionable data. Exactly how much of your site traffic comes from which networks? What platforms are showing the highest amount of engagement? You never know; the numbers just may surprise you.

Do you have an audience seeking expert advice on the most relevant topics in today’s competitive marketing environment? Give David A. West a call today at (403) 456-0089 and ask about available dates for booking!

Some of David's Clients

  • Cir Realty
  • Canada Mortgage Network
  • Canasa
  • Calgary Residential