What Boom Have Been Reading February 2019 Edition

Hearts glowing

Spring is around the corner, and after a strangely warm February, we can really feel it in the air. We’ve had a busy time at Boom and have enjoyed welcoming some new faces to our growing team who we’re keen to introduce you to very soon.

Don’t forget that our springtime Drink Digital event is happening next week! We’d love to see you there, so please come along for the usual expert speakers, free food and a great chance to talk digital.

In February’s round-up, we take a look at how to grab visual attention, write ads that sell, stay safe with algorithm updates and much more.

James Walsh

James Walsh

Head of Production

Grabbing Visual Attention With The Visual Cortex

This article is a great simple breakdown of how to grab the attention of users for your vital CTA’s. It can help communicate why you make certain visual choices to clients who may have trouble understanding conversion led design.

Pete looking up

Peter Bingham

Head of Design & Creative Content

7 Tips to Design Faster And Why Speed is Important

by José Torre (@zecarlostorre) An excellent guide, with real-life examples, to speeding through the initial design process. It’s simple, really – just jump in, do a bit of sketching, share and listen to others, then break it down and refine your work bit-by-bit… and don’t be afraid to step away for a bit.

It’s a great way to work as it refuses to allow a creative block to arise and it encourages sensible, constructive feedback – pretty soon the ideas will come thick and fast!

Nintendo & designing humanly

by Madeline Collins (@indikoro) Simple and easy-to-follow user experiences are deceptive. The grace, simplicity and humanity of a good UX belies the hard work and attention to detail that goes into making them. The Nintendo experience is one such example, and in this article, Madeline has really nailed exactly what makes it so special.

Martin Baxter

Martin Baxter

PPC Account Manager

VARN Original Research: Almost 60% of People Still Don’t Recognise Google Paid Ads When They See Them

from VARN With 18-24 year olds least likely to recognise paid ads.

Digital Marketing Glossary: The A-Z of Industry Terms

by Coast Digital Required reading for anyone new to digital marketing or if you’ve missed a few seasons.

The Trauma Floor: The secret lives of Facebook moderators in America

by Casey Newton (@CaseyNewton) If you think your job is bad…

4-Step Guide to Writing Google Ads That Sell

by Dakota Shane (@DakotaShane_Nun) The first 2 steps give some food for thought and are regularly overlooked, a PPC ad writer should be well-versed in steps 3 and 4 however.

This New AI-Based Text Prediction Tool Can Write Better Than Many Humans

by Daniyal Malik The Elon Musk OpenAI project refuses to publish the code of their latest research for fear of dire consequences.

Lauren Roitman

Digital Marketing Client Manager

Google’s Major Algorithm Updates: How to Stay Safe

by Aleksandra Pautaran Medic! Panda! Fred! Hummingbird! Whether you’re just starting out in SEO, or you’ve been involved in the industry for years, it can’t hurt to have a little refresh of what Google’s algorithm updates over the years have meant. This article by Aleksandra walks the reader through the most impactful updates from the last decade and includes instructions for what to look out for, and how to keep yourself safe from their clutches.

89 Free Tools for Internet Marketers

by Olga Dyachuk As you might already know from previous round-ups, I love a round-up of a round-up. This list of 89 free tools by Olga dropped in to my inbox this morning, and I bookmarked it straight away. Whether you want to improve the quality of your articles, or are looking for a new way to test your email marketing campaigns, or perhaps just need a little assistance with design, there’s a tool that can help you do that… for free!

Lindsay Ball-McQueen

Lindsay Ball-McQueen

Digital Designer

What are Design Systems?

by Renee Fleck Design Systems. Gone are the days of emailing a hastily-put-together pdf of some ‘brand guidelines’ to a designer/developer and leaving them to interpret them as best they can – a design system leads all aspects of a visual identity – down to functions and usability. A design system steers coding as well as design.

Designers are too busy to design

by Caio Braga How the everyday affects our ability to design.

Lorcan Fearon

Junior Digital Marketing Executive

Rewriting the Beginner’s Guide to SEO, Chapter 6: Link Building & Establish Authority

by Britney Muller (@BritneyMuller) A year ago when I started at Boom, I was shown Moz’s Beginner’s Guide to SEO, which still enjoys a lot of traffic to this day. That guide was written quite a while ago now so Moz have undertaken the task of rewriting and updating it for 2019. They’re up to Chapter 6 and I thought it was worth including as I always find it’s good to go back and cover the basics every now and again.

How To Build Excellent Traffic with No Backlinks

by Jim Miller (@salesbloomuk) This case study looks at the example of Salesbloom and how they’ve created success for themselves without backlinks. Jim Miller, a director of Salesbloom, details how they did it. Like with most case studies, it’s inspirational rather than instructional. I’m not an advocate for trying to replicate someone else’s success but there’s no harm in checking out a case study, seeing what worked for others and thinking about how it could apply to your own situation.

I Cut Google Out of My Life. It Screwed Up Everything

by Kashmir Hill (@kashhill) Kashmir Hill has been living without the ‘Big Five’ in her life so you don’t have to. As part of a series for Gizmodo, Kashmir Hill is going without Amazon, Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Apple a week at a time. I’ve noticed that as Google spreads its tentacles even further and consolidates its power that people in the SEO community are trying to push back against that. This piece shows that turning away from these behemoths isn’t easily done and also details just how big Google’s influence is.

David Allsop

David Allsop

Web Developer

The Non-Developers Guide to Git and GitHub

by Felicia Ceballos-Marroquin


Git is a version control system used to collaboratively maintain a code base. If you’ve never used Git before or only know of the basics it can be hard to understand. I found this excellent blog post which covers installing, configuration, repositories, pushing, pulling, GitHub and much more. It is useful for complete beginners or Git-familiar users alike.


Edwina Lambourdiere

Head of PPC

Using automation to boost PPC performance

by Ben Wood (@iambenwood)


I have been trying automated bidding on various clients in different industries, with different budget levels and so far I cannot say that I back up automated bidding, especially the claim that you could start from scratch (with zero conversion). So I began to look into alternatives and this includes layering up automated bidding with bids. PS: the script for error checking seems a very good idea!

Claire Brain

Claire Brain

Digital Marketing Client Manager

On-Page SEO for NLP

by Justin Briggs (@justinrbriggs)


Following some recent training in SEO copywriting for NLP, I wanted to know more. This article gives plenty of useful tips on how to improve writing for NLP, and provides enough detail to put these into practice. I’ve been using these ideas alongside the Cloud Natural Language API to test and learn.

Katie Walton

Head of PPC

The Inverted Unicorn Ad Targeting Strategy that Doubles Facebook Relevance Score

by Larry Kim (@larrykim)


Larry Kim suggests an interesting way to appeal to your Facebook audience – pop culture references ftw!

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