ALK Digital Marketing Solutions

Free SEO Keyword Tool for Keyword Refining

User searches on Mac desktop for an SEO keyword tool to refine keywords
User searches on Mac desktop for an SEO keyword tool to refine keywords

If you are using Google Ads' free Keyword Planner and you are overwhelmed by the amount of keyword suggestions provided, our free tool will help you narrow it down to the top 10 best options.

Please read instructions below before use for optimal results.

FREE SEO Keyword Research Tool

FREE SEO Keyword Research Tool

Top 10 Keywords to Target:


Effective keyword research can be an incredibly lengthy process, but it’s a cornerstone of any successful SEO strategy. Keyword research usually starts with brainstorming what you think users might be searching to discover your business. But a good SEO will take it one step further by identifying all possible search variations and which are best to target for the unique needs of an individual business. Comprehensive keyword research involves evaluating various factors, including search volume, competition level, and relevance. 

Why Use Our Keyword Research Tool?
Our SEO Keyword Research Tool is designed to streamline this essential process, saving you time and effort. Manually sorting through thousands of keyword variation suggestions can be tedious and overwhelming, especially when trying to balance multiple factors like search volume and competition. This tool automates these steps, allowing you to quickly filter out high-competition keywords and sort the remaining ones by their potential value. It mimics the detailed analysis that a professional SEO expert would perform, ensuring you get the most relevant and high-impact keywords for your strategy.

By using our tool, you can focus on the most promising keywords without spending hours crunching numbers and sorting data. Whether you’re a business owner, a marketing professional, or a content creator, this tool empowers you to make informed decisions about which keywords to target, helping you achieve better SEO results more efficiently. Embrace the power of smart keyword research and give your SEO efforts the boost they need with our intuitive and effective tool.

How to Use the SEO Keyword Tool for Keyword Refining


Step 1: Prepare Your Keyword Data on Google Ads (Free)

  1. Create a Google Ads Account for Free: If you do not already have a Google Ads account, you will need to create one. Visit Google Ads and click “Start Now”. Google Ads will try to prompt you to start a campaign, but just click “Skip Campaign Creation”. Submit the required account settings (country, time zone and currency) and then click “Go to Account”. 
  2. Go to Google Ads Keyword Planner: Log in to your Google Ads account and navigate to the Keyword Planner tool, located under the “Planning” submenu of the “Tools” menu. Select your account and click “Discover New Keywords”.

    Why Google Ads Keyword Planner?

    Whether you plan on running paid Google Ads in the future or not, the Google Ads keyword planner is the best free tool for keyword research out there. Other free tools limit the number of keywords you can submit or the number of keyword suggestions you can receive.

    If you use a CSV file from a different source, this tool may not work to refine it, as the rows and columns will not match.

  3. Enter Relevant Keywords: Input 5 to 10 keywords that are relevant to your business or website. These should be terms you think your target audience might use to find your products or services.
  4. Export the Results: The Keyword Planner will then output a number of keyword suggestions based on your inputted keywords. Depending on how niche or broad your keywords are, it could be a handful of suggestions or thousands. After generating keyword ideas, click the download button in the top right of the dashboard to export the results as a CSV file.
  5. Clean the Data: If there are many keyword suggestions, you may want to open the CSV file and delete any rows that contain irrelevant keyword suggestions. Ensure your data is focused and relevant to your niche. Afterwards, re-save the document as a CSV file.

Step 2: Use the Keyword Research Tool

  1. Upload the CSV File: Go to the Keyword Research Tool on this page. Click the “Choose File” button and select the CSV file from Step 1. You will know it has uploaded if you see data populate in the text box on the form.
  2. Submit the Data: Click the “Submit” button to process your data.

Step 3: Review Your Results

  1. Top 10 Keywords: After submitting, the tool will process your data and display the top 10 keywords for you to target. These keywords are selected based on their search volume, competition level, and relevance to your initial input.
  2. Refine Your SEO Strategy: Use these top 10 keywords to inform your content creation, on-page SEO, and overall digital marketing strategy. Focusing on these keywords will help improve your search engine rankings and attract more relevant traffic to your site.

Step 4: Implement and Monitor

  1. Incorporate Keywords: Integrate the identified keywords into your website content, meta descriptions, headers, and other SEO elements.
  2. Monitor Performance: Keep track of your website’s performance in search engines using tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console. Adjust your strategy as needed based on the results.

By following these steps, you can efficiently conduct keyword research and enhance your SEO efforts, ensuring your website is optimized for the right audience.

* PLEASE NOTE: This tool is built for business owners or marketers who are trying to identify the best keywords to target in organic search ranking efforts. It does not take into account cost per click, so it would not be an effective tool for determining which keywords to bid for in paid ads

ALK Digital Marketing recommends working with an expert both to implement organic SEO with the keywords selected, AND to identify keywords for paid SEM efforts, which are more complex. 

Allison Kronberg, owner of ALK Digital Marketing

If you want to optimize your business' presence online, ALK Digital Marketing can help.

Reach out to day to schedule a complimentary discovery session.

Search vs Performance Max Campaigns for Google Ads

Graphic Design: Search vs Performance Max Campaigns
Graphic Design: Search vs Performance Max Campaigns

When I first began managing Google Ads campaigns for clients, it was pretty straightforward. I would perform keyword research, write effective search ads, consider targeting and display expansion and then move onto optimization. 

However, Google Ads has evolved dramatically in recent years, leading users and managers to reconsider the balance between manual control and algorithmic management. 

One of the most significant shifts is evident when comparing traditional search ads to the innovative AI-driven Performance Max campaigns. 

While Google Ads reports that accounts with Performance Max campaigns boast an average 13% increase in total incremental conversions, the question remains: are they always the best choice? 

In this article, we’ll delve into the distinctions between Google Ads Search vs Performance Max campaigns and provide insights into when to leverage each. 

A Brief History

Google’s roots lie in search, with users typing keywords like “Plumber Services” and Google presenting relevant results on its Search Engine Results Pages (SERP), known as organic listings. 

 

However, achieving visibility in organic listings was time-consuming, leading to the inception of Search Engine Marketing (SEM) in 2000, a cornerstone of Google Ads (then AdWords). 

 

Search Ads empowered businesses to secure better search result visibility through sponsored listings. Then Google gamified the ad-building process, assessing everything from keyword relevance to landing page quality to ensure a positive user experience.

 

Understanding Search Ads

Search Ads Example

Search ads are primarily text-based and target users searching for relevant keywords. They comprise headlines, descriptions, and various extensions (such as phone numbers or website links). 

 

Goals for search ads range from driving website traffic to increasing sales, with targeting options including keywords, geolocation, and audience lists. Google has advanced search ads over time, introducing features like algorithmic image generation and Responsive Search Ads.

 

And while Google’s Display Ads also offered advertising on the Google Display Network with graphic design or video ads, there wasn’t yet any campaign type that could do it all. 

 

Introducing Performance Max

 

Launched in 2021, Performance Max campaigns represent the evolution of Google Ads, offering a comprehensive approach across multiple platforms. 

 

They had all of the same assets that Search Ads had, plus new videos (including new template videos), logos, and various dimensions of images. Instead of needing a graphic designer to put together a display ad, the algorithm would simply combine all the assets provided into a preset design structure made for various placement options.

 

Placement options extended beyond traditional SERP or display network placements, encompassing all of Google’s diverse network, including Search, Gmail, YouTube, Google Search Partners, and Google Maps.

 

Similar to Search campaigns, Performance Max campaigns offer robust targeting options, encompassing keywords, geolocation and audience lists. But Performance Max campaigns also leveraged powerful, algorithm-driven audience signals to enhance targeting precision.

 

Case Studies

In late 2023 I began working with a regional travel industry client that had been running smart campaigns (simplistic, fully-automated campaigns) for about a year. As with many companies running only simple campaign structures, their returns were barely positive.

When I learned that they had an untapped budget to make use of on Google Ads, I recommended a multi-stage shift to Performance Max campaigns. From Q3 2023 to Q1 2024, the account has seen 4 times revenue increases and 6 times the return on ad spend with the addition of Performance Max.

Performance Max performed well because the account had previously established clean revenue and conversion reporting and quality media to work with. 

On the other hand, I once inherited an account with Performance Max campaigns that were not performing well. The company struggled with underperforming Performance Max campaigns due to suboptimal asset utilization, budget constraints, and messy conversion setups.

It’s important to be aware that Performance Max is driven by artificial intelligence. And artificial intelligence is only as good as the data we feed it. If you have a broken system to start, it will stay broken when you introduce Performance Max.

Summary: Search vs. Performance Max Campaigns

In summary, here are some considerations for when you should work with Search vs. Performance Max campaigns on Google Ads:

 

Performance Max Campaigns:

  • Particularly effective for visually oriented products or brands.

  • Suited for businesses with compelling image and video assets.

  • Requires a longer timeframe to establish historical data but can yield significant results with medium to high budgets.

  • Best for accounts with a well-optimized existing account and previously established conversion reporting that meets the company’s goals.

Search Campaigns:

  • Are ideally run before Performance Max campaigns in order to determine which keywords are most effective for use in Performance Max ‘Audience Signals’.

  • Best suited for companies with smaller budgets.

  • Best suited for accounts with specific keyword targets, conversion actions, and keyword-optimized landing pages.

  • Best suited for less companies and products that are less visual.

Why You Should Work With a Paid Ads Manager

Effective campaign management requires technical expertise, particularly in conversion reporting and budget planning. Professionals often yield superior results, leveraging experience and access to specialized tools and support.

In conclusion, understanding the nuances between search and Performance Max campaigns is crucial for devising a robust Google Ads strategy. By leveraging the unique features, targeting options, and asset capabilities of each campaign type, digital marketers can optimize their advertising efforts and drive tangible business outcomes.

Happy New Year! Our 1% Pledge for 2024

ALK Digital Marketing joins Pledge 1%

ALK Digital Marketing joins Pledge 1%

Our Pledge

ALK Digital Marketing is proud to have joined Pledge 1% in the global movement to create a new normal where companies of all sizes integrate giving into their culture and values.

Pledge 1% empowers companies to donate 1% of product, 1% of equity, 1% of profit or 1% of employee time to causes of their choice. ALK Digital Marketing has pledged 1% of profit and 1% of employee time. We are excited to join Pledge 1%’s network of founders, entrepreneurs and companies around the globe that have committed to giving back.

1% Profit and 1% Employee Time

ALK Digital Marketing will donate 1% of 2024 revenue and 1% Employee Time to the Not For Profit (NFP) and Charity sectors.

Nonprofits

ALK Digital Marketing has had the pleasure of providing digital marketing services to several deserving nonprofits throughout her career history, including Hawaii Opera Theatre, Reef Guardians Hawaii and the local humane society. 1/2 of 1% of profits will each be donated to Hawaii Opera Theatre and Reef Guardians Hawaii at the end of the year and 1% of Employee Time will be spent volunteering at the local humane society.

We are proud to be a Pledge 1% member. For more information about Pledge 1%, visit www.pledge1percent.org.

Allison Kronberg, owner of ALK Digital Marketing

If you want to optimize your business’ presence online, ALK Digital Marketing can help.

Reach out to day to schedule a complimentary discovery session.

The Ultimate Guide: Marketing a Google Workspace Add-On

The Ultimate Guide for Marketing a Google Workspace Add-On
The Ultimate Guide for Marketing a Google Workspace Add-On

As a digital marketing freelancer, I’ve crafted marketing strategies for diverse industries, ranging from tourism to nonprofits and healthcare. However, the most distinctive and innovative space I’ve ventured into involves marketing services for Google Workspace Add-Ons.

Over the past few months, I’ve been strategizing and consulting on marketing approaches for my client, John, who owns Automagical Apps. He graciously agreed to be featured in this article.

Initially, while I had a grasp on Google Workspace products like Google Docs, Gmail, and Google Drive, I wasn’t well-versed in Google Workspace Add-Ons.

In essence, these add-ons are third-party applications that seamlessly integrate with various Google Workspace applications, enhancing efficiency and simplifying tasks for business owners. Many offer free plans and the option to upgrade to subscription-based models for advanced features. These applications are accessible through the Google Workspace Marketplace.

For example, Automagical Apps has developed popular tools for one-click translations of Google Slides, transforming Google Drive files into Google Forms, and more.

When I began collaborating with John, I scoured publications by marketing experts for resources on raising awareness about Google Workspace Add-Ons, building traffic, devising subscription strategies, managing reputation, and optimizing listings. To my surprise, I found very little information. A quick Google search for “google workspace add-ons marketing” yielded no results on performing traditional digital marketing for a Google Workspace product.

Given the scarcity of shared knowledge online, I aimed to create a comprehensive guide for other marketers and Google Workspace developers to reference.

Publishing a Google Workspace Add-On

To be clear, I am not a developer. The purpose of this article is to advise on marketing for Workspace Add-Ons, not building or publishing them. 

With that said, the first step to marketing a Google Workspace add-on, of course, is to get it published on the Google Workspace Marketplace. Tidis Ventures has created a fantastic Complete Guide to Publishing a Google Workspace Add-On that I recommend reviewing if you are starting from scratch. The steps break down in the following way:

  1. Review your app to be compliant with Google’s guidelines
  2. Create a standard Google Cloud Platform project
  3. Set up the Oauth consent screen
  4. Create a Google App Script project & Deploy your app
  5. Enable Google Workspace Marketplace SDK
  6. Create a store listing
  7. Publish Oauth consent screen for review
  8. Making the Oauth consent screen video
  9. Publish your store listing and app for review

Google also has guides for building add-ons and publishing add-ons.

Understanding the Google Workspace Marketplace

Screenshot of the Google Workspace Marketplace

Before we go any further, it’s important to understand the setup of the Google Workspace Marketplace. 

What we now know as Google Workspace (formerly GSuite) was introduced in 2006. The Google Workspace Marketplace launched in 2010 as an online store for free and paid web applications that work with Google Workspace services and third party software. 

Add-On product listings are organized in the following way:

Home

The default landing page is the Home page, which displays 2-3 featured apps in each of the Editor’s Choice Categories below.

Editor’s Choice

  • Intelligent Apps: These apps are AI-powered apps to help you work smarter and save time.
  • Work from everywhere: These apps help your organization be more productive.
  • Business essentials: These apps help increase workflow productivity.
  • Apps to discover: These apps are new and innovative.
  • Built by Google: These apps are built by Google.

Learn more about how to get featured on Editor’s Choice.

Top Charts

  • Most Popular: Organized by number of installs.
  • Top Rated: Organized by average star rating, with number or reviews and recency of reviews being additional factors in positioning.

Categories

  • Business Tools
  • Productivity
  • Education
  • Communication
  • Utilities

Within each category, users have the option to filter by Workspace App compatibility (Google Docs compatible, for instance), free or paid, and star rating. The Google Workspace Marketplace also allows users to search for apps by keyword. 

With the exception of Editor’s Choice, which is curated, where your add-on listing is placed on any of the above category pages is driven by an algorithm. Google’s algorithms tend to be quite complex, and the Google Workspace Marketplace is no exception. 

Considerations for Gaining Visibility on the Google Workspace Marketplace

From what I have learned, these aspects seem to be most important to consider when attempting to gain visibility:

  1. Number of Installs
  2. Average review rating
  3. App Compatibility
  4. Quality of Add-On Listing

Number of installs has a great impact on visibility, especially without Editor’s Choice selection. So the first priority for any new developer launching an add-on should be to maximize exposure and increase the rate of user installs.

Understanding the Google Workspace Marketplace

Screenshot of a Google Workspace Marketplace Add-On Listing

Your Google Workspace Add-On listing is your product page. And Google Workspace Add-On listings can be optimized for visibility within the Google Workspace Marketplace in similar ways to how ecommerce products might be optimized for visibility across Amazon marketplace or Google Shopping. 

Every Google Workspace Add-On listing has the following components:

  • Logo
  • Title and Brief Summary/ Description
  • “Works With”: A List of Icons for the Apps Supported 
  • Call to Action: “Install”
  • Average Rating, Number of Ratings & Number of Installs
  • How-To or Promotional Designs and/or Videos
  • Permissions
  • Reviews
  • Description
  • Additional Information: Pricing, Link to Developer Website, Support URL, Privacy Policy & Terms of service, Link to Report, Certifications, featured, etc.

Optimizing a Google Workspace Add-On Listing

Once a listing is published, developers should optimize it. As with product pages and website homepages, Google Workspace Add-On Listings should be optimized for user experience, traffic and conversion rate.

Branding

As with any product, recognizable branding builds consumer trust. Consider having a logo and brand guidelines professionally developed before launching your product. Ensure that your logo, screenshots, videos, website and description elements are consistent.

Optimizing the Title and Summary

Because Google Workspace Marketplace has search features, it’s important to optimize the title and description of your listing for keywords that they might search for. For instance, searching “pdf to google form” brings up Automagical Apps’ listing for Automagical Forms in the first position.

Another consideration is character limits. While character limits allow for more characters, developers should try to communicate the value of their product in the first 25 characters of their title and the first 80 characters of their add-on description, which is where the snippet cuts off on the category listing pages.

Here are optimization for titles recommendations from Google:

  • Use title case.
  • Avoid punctuation, especially parentheses, unless part of your brand.
  • Keep it short—15 or fewer characters is best. Long names may be automatically truncated in the Google Workspace Marketplace listing and elsewhere.
  • Don’t include the words “Google”, “Gmail”, or other Google product names in your add-on name.
  • Don’t include the word “add-on” in your add-on name.
  • Leave out version information. 

Optimizing Listing Visuals

Google Workspace Marketplace allows developers to upload images and videos to their profile that display to the user how their add-on works.

The graphics dimensions are 1,280 x 800 px. All videos should be 16:9 ratio and hosted publicly on Youtube.

The best graphics include:

  • Screenshots of the add-on in use displayed via a graphic design (one screenshot per slide)
  • Minimal text (two sentences or less to communicate the screenshot)
  • Large font size for easy legibility
  • Branded colors and text

Optimizing the Listing Description

The best descriptions for Google Workspace Add-Ons do all of the following:

  • Explain the value of the add-on within the first two sentences
  • Include trademark indicator wherever Google product names are mentioned (Example: Google Maps™)
  • Are organized into clear sections
  • Provide bullet points for features
  • Are less than roughly 1000 characters in length
  • Provide how-to instructions in 5 bullet points or less
  • Provide a few examples of who could make use of the add-on and what they could use it for
  • Provide at-a-glance pricing
  • Utilize emojis or visual elements sensibly

Here are optimization for description recommendations from Google:

  • Use sentence case (especially for buttons, labels, and card actions).
  • Prefer short, simple text without jargon or acronyms.

All of these details working together will help to grow traffic and convert users. 

Google Workspace Add-On Developer Website

Automagical Apps Website

In addition to fulfilling the requirements of a successful marketplace listing, Google mandates that developers have a website with specific publicly accessible information. This includes links to details about the developer, customer service support, and legal documentation like a privacy policy.

Given these prerequisites, most developers opt to create a comprehensive website to showcase their add-ons. This not only meets Google’s criteria but also serves as an additional channel for potential customers to discover your products.

Your website provides an adaptable online space where you can share extensive information beyond the constraints of character limits or style guidelines set by the Google Workspace Marketplace. It’s an opportunity to present your add-on in its best possible light, fostering trust and potentially enhancing user conversion rates.

Moreover, establishing a support center, whether integrated into your website or hosted elsewhere, is crucial. If you’re uncertain where to begin, consider leveraging tools like HelpCrunch, which streamlines the process of building a knowledge base that seamlessly integrates with your website.

As with any website, your site should be well optimized for user experience. Website design is its own beast. If you need help with designing a website, contact ALK Digital Marketing

The best Google Workspace Marketplace developer websites include:

  • Featured App(s)
  • Call to Action (Install and/or Learn More)
  • Selling Points, such as number of Installs or high rating
  • Featured Reviews
  • Use Cases
  • Support FAQ articles and how-to guides
  • Information about the developer

Monetizing Your Google Workspace Add-On

The Google Workspace Marketplace provides four pricing options: free, paid with a free trial, paid with free features, or simply a paid plan.

Most add-ons tend to lean towards either a paid plan with a free trial or a paid plan with free features. The free trial serves as the “hook” for an add-on, enticing users to explore the product before committing. Typically, users aren’t immediately ready to convert to paid users — they need persuasion.

Free Trials

For add-ons that can be quantified by usage per day or interactions, a smart approach is to limit usage before prompting a paid plan. If quantification isn’t feasible, offering a set number of days for a free trial is effective.

To determine the optimal usage or trial period, tracking your add-on’s installs and usage via an analytics platform like Google Analytics (now GA4) is crucial. John from Automagical Apps has penned an insightful blog detailing the rationale behind setting the cutoff for the Form Creator add-on’s free plan, worth exploring.

Paid Subscriptions

When contemplating the cost of a paid plan, consider whether your add-on caters mostly to individuals, enterprises (domain users), or a mix of both. Customizing pricing structures for each is key. Enterprise users often hold the most value, so prioritize offering them the highest value.

Conduct thorough competitor and product research to determine a fair price range that benefits users while maximizing your profits. Experiment with different pricing models and gather user feedback.

Understanding your audience is pivotal. Educators, for example, might have less disposable income for educational tools compared to an e-commerce business. Successful creators cater to both budget-conscious users and those seeking premium options.

Adaptable Pricing

If over half of your reviewers lament high costs, it might be time to reconsider pricing. An effective in-app conversion rate for IOS apps averages around 2%, so if less than 2% of your trials convert to paid users, reassess pricing strategies.

Communicate the value of your paid plans clearly to trial users and ensure they stand out or excel compared to competitors. Regular competitor audits are essential in this rapidly evolving space — adaptation is crucial for staying relevant.

Remember, discounts and promotions aren’t exclusive to retail industries! Google Workspace Add-On developers should explore timely promotions or reward loyal users with exclusive discounts.

Analytics

As a digital marketer, analytics will always be my favorite subject. All successful businesses need clear and insightful analytics. Operating without them is like driving blind. 

Google Analytics

Although your installs happen off of your website and on the Google Workspace Marketplace platform, the marketplace allows for Google Analytics connection to track app listing, user and installation metrics. You can read the full guide here

Google Analytics includes the following information:

  • How many visitors have viewed your app listing for a specific time period. 
  • The geographic distribution of visitors.
  • How visitors reach your app listing, for example, from a Google Search.
  • The average time spent viewing your app listing.
  • Install events that are created when users start and finish installing your app. These events let you determine how often an install process was aborted and how many installs were completed over time.

In addition to these add-on tracking events, I would also encourage developers to create an Analytics property for their websites. Together, these two Analytics properties will paint a picture of how users are interacting with your add-on from end-to-end.

For developers offering a paid plan, the next step would be to integrate usage info with your licensing or billing server. 

With billing and subscription information, you can adequately analyze pricing strategy and calculate crucial metrics like ROI and user conversion rate.

Google Search Console

Google Search Console is a tool that allows developers to measure a website’s Google Search traffic and performance, fix issues, and make a site shine in Google Search results. 

Google Search Console can only be integrated with a website, not Google Workspace Marketplace. But it provides key insights on the queries that users are searching in order to discover your website. 

These queries may identify opportunities, such as questions that can be answered from your support center, keywords that you may have potential to hold top rank for in search results or key phrases that could be bid on if you choose to perform paid advertising.

Optimizing User Communications and Email Marketing

All optimizations to pricing, promotions and research would be moot without effective communications in place with your users. 

You’ll want to carefully choose a customer relationship management tool based on price and the ability to support the type of automations you are looking for. For developers of add-ons, the ideal CRM should provide the ability to utilize an API or webhooks to create triggers for automated messages. 

For instance, when a user installs your app, a webhook will carry over that user’s email address into a pre-made segment for “New Users”, which will trigger automated emails. Again, I’ll point you to John’s fantastic blog for an overview of how he accomplished this with the tool Mailjet.

Ideally, your automated messaging would cover at least all of these bases:

  • Initial Install Welcome Message 
  • In-App Calls for Reviews
  • Free Plan Expiring Message
  • Notifications for add-on updates
  • Upsells and Other App Info

For those who want to take it one step further, consider including an opt-in form on your website and starting up a semi-regular email newsletter. This newsletter can include tips on how best to use your add-ons, newly released add-ons, promotions and more.

Be sure to test your emails regularly to ensure they are performing as expected and lacking any errors.

Social Media Marketing for Google Workspace Add-Ons

Maintaining a semi-regular email newsletter proves highly effective in engaging supporters and sustaining awareness among potential users yet to convert. Another impactful strategy is establishing a robust presence across social media platforms.

In today’s landscape, we’re inundated with options for social media channels. Succeeding in this realm demands substantial time for engagement and community management, so it’s crucial to be discerning about the platforms you prioritize.

LinkedIn

As Google Workspace primarily caters to businesses and enterprises, leveraging a business-focused platform like LinkedIn is a natural fit. LinkedIn’s allowance for text-only posts alleviates the demand for graphics, unlike visually oriented platforms such as Instagram.

LinkedIn users seek educational content to enhance their skills, so ensure your content caters to their learning needs and aligns with your target industry audiences.

Meta (Facebook and Instagram)

These platforms boast widespread adoption, making it easy to establish and nurture a community. However, the heavy emphasis on visuals might pose a challenge for software or add-ons.

Moreover, Instagram’s algorithm demands consistent posting and active engagement. If this seems daunting, prioritizing LinkedIn might be a better choice. Yet, if you’re confident in your graphic design and content creation abilities and can commit to engaging relevant communities consistently, Meta and Instagram can effectively maintain awareness and foster a supportive following.

Social Listening

Even without a dedicated business social media account, it’s essential to regularly scour social platforms for individuals seeking solutions similar to what your add-on offers.

Communities on Reddit, Facebook, X, Threads, and elsewhere often voice frustrations matching the exact problems your add-on solves.

Encourage these users to explore your add-on through a free trial. Engage in conversations naturally and approach users as you’d want to be approached. Avoid any semblance of spam—aim to assist users in solving their problems rather than driving them away.

Paid Advertising

So let’s say an add-on that’s performing well on the Google Workspace Marketplace. You’ve successfully cultivated a community of engaged users and advocates through regular newsletters and active social media presence.

Currently, you’re converting users at a rate of 2% or more. However, you sense there’s still an untapped audience waiting to discover your product, and you don’t have the patience to wait for SEO or referrals to take you there. Plus, you have a budget to allocate.

This might signal that it’s time to venture into paid advertising. Platforms like Google Ads and LinkedIn Ads wield remarkable potential in broadening your reach to potential customers.

While I could delve into explaining the intricacies of setting up these ads here, it’s a topic that warrants a blog of its own due to its complexity. It’s best to entrust this aspect of marketing to a seasoned professional who specializes in such strategies.

Aggregate Review Prediction Calculator

How many new reviews at 5 stars do I need to increase my average star rating to [Desired new average review score]?
How many new reviews at 5 stars do I need to increase my average star rating to [Desired new average review score]?

How many new 5-star reviews do I need to increase my average star rating to X?

Review Calculator

Review Calculator









For restaurants, hotels, tour operators, service providers, and others, maintaining a positive review score can be a crucial aspect of a successful digital marketing strategy.

If you are aiming to improve your business’s online reputation, our Aggregate Review Score Calculator is here to help you determine the number of positive reviews needed to reach your desired rating on popular review platforms like Google My Business, TripAdvisor or Yelp.

Why Use It

Research proves that customers are more likely to purchase a product when its aggregate rating surpasses 3 stars. So increasing your score isn’t just about keeping customers happy – it’s about your bottom line.

This calculator is an invaluable tool for businesses seeking to enhance their online presence. It takes the guesswork out of achieving your goal.

How to Use the Online Review Calculator

Input Existing Reviews:
Enter the total number of reviews your business currently has on the platform (e.g., 1,921 reviews). 

Existing Aggregate Review Score:
Provide the average rating of your existing reviews (e.g., 3.9 stars).

Desired Aggregate Review Score:
Specify the rating you aspire to achieve (e.g., 4 stars).

Click Calculate:
Hit the “Calculate” button, and the calculator will automatically process the data.

Get Your Result:
The calculator will display the approximate number of additional 5-star reviews needed to attain your desired rating.

Remember, this tool is meant to provide an estimate. Also, expect to wait about 2 weeks for the latest reviews to influence the aggregate rating score.

Many unpredictabilities, such as platform changes or new reviews of lower scores, may influence the actual results.

Allison Kronberg, owner of ALK Digital Marketing

If you want to optimize your business' presence online, ALK Digital Marketing can help.

Reach out to day to schedule a complimentary discovery session.

10 Free Ways I’ve Used AI for Marketing in the Past 10 Days

AI for Digital Marketing Blog Cover

(And How it’s Fallen Short)

AI for Digital Marketing Blog Cover







If 2020 was the year of the QR code (hi COVID), then 2023 is the year of AI. It’s all I seem to hear about in the digital marketing space. And it isn’t showing any signs of slowing down. 

As with other industry-molding innovations, I knew from the start that I needed to be using it – and using it frequently – if I wanted to stay ahead. 

I began working with AI in early 2023, mostly playing with ChatGPT prompts. By mid-2023, working with AI has become part of my daily routine as a digital marketer.

Even just in the past few months, AI has made great strides. But it still has major limitations. In this article, I’ll share real examples of how I have used AI for marketing in the past 10 days, along with the ways it has fallen short.

Email Responses
AI Tool Used: GPT For Gmail

First of all, if you have a Gmail account and you haven’t yet discovered Google Workspace Add-Ons, I encourage you to take a look! Google WorkSpace add-ons are enhancements to the Google Workspace (Gmail, Google Docs, Google Sheets, etc.) that aim to increase productivity.

I recently discovered GPT for Gmail, and I find that I use it from time to time for quick responses. From within gmail, the add-on allows you to formulate a reply with a quick prompt and a choice between formal or casual tone.

I recently used it to decline an invitation to work with a white label agency:

How it Fell Short

As you can see, the “formal” tone was much too formal. But, unfortunately, the casual was also too casual, employing terms like “hey there” and “heads up”. I ended up condensing the formal version and tweaking for my response:

It probably only saved me about 30 seconds or so, but I think there’s potential for this technology to amount to much greater time savings in the future. And for those who overthink responses or who are slow at typing, it could be a game changer.

Keyword Research
AI Tool Used: ChatGPT

One of the top recommended uses for AI for marketing is for keyword research. A few days ago, I tried it out for one of my clients: an architecture firm in Honolulu.

When finding ideal keywords for a client, it’s best to find keywords that are highly relevant with lower difficulty and higher monthly average search count. In an ideal scenario, I would have a spreadsheet of all possible keywords sorted by relevance (high to low), with a secondary sort for difficulty (low to high) and a tertiary sort for monthly search volume (high to low).

In my prompt, I gave a summary of the architecture firm I was representing and tasked ChatGPT with providing “20 questions or keyword phrases” to discover them. I also asked ChatGPT to rank these keywords with the sort order that I described above. As requested, I received a dump of 20 keywords:

AI for marketing keyword research

How it Fell Short

Then, I asked ChatGPT to provide the actual score for difficulty, the actual score for relevance and the actual number of average monthly searches so that I could use to back up these suggestions with data. I was disappointed when I received the following response:

While ChatGPT provided great suggestions for keyword research tools, this brought me back to non-AI tools I’ve used the past. UberSuggest and SEMRush have added AI features for content writing for keyword targeting, but not for sorting.

With ChatGPT’s new integration with Google Sheets, incorporating keyword data into its knowledge base will allow for far more sophisticated data management in the future.

Ad Copy
AI Tool Used: ChatGPT

I decided to try ChatGPT for ad copy to see if that might be a better fit. 

ChatGPT is only as good as the prompts you feed it, so I worked to be as specific as possible. I explained that I was a digital marketing freelancer representing a health insurance company based in Hawaii, tasked with providing ad copy for Meta (Facebook) ads. 

I gave ChatGPT its source material, which happened to be the script for a video commercial, and asked it to provide two sets of ad copy suggestions: one marketing to Hawaii residents and one marketing to Hawaii business owners. Lastly, I provided character limits for Meta headlines and descriptions.

ChatGPT AI for marketing ad copy

How it Fell Short

In general, it was a good start. It helped me avoid the problem of the “blank slate” and gave me a base to work from. 

But there were two main problems with the ad copy. For one thing, the ads I was working with were heavily geared toward a local Hawaii-based audience. ChatGPT was smart enough to pick up on things like the use of an ‘okina (apostrophe) in “Hawai’i”, but it wasn’t smart enough to use culturally sensitive Hawaiian words like Mālama correctly. 

In addition, the ad copy felt mass-produced. Because that’s what AI does – it mass produces. The best ads – and the best ad copy – are built to stand out from the masses.

AI for Creative Branding Ideas
AI Tool Used: Canva Generative Text to Image

Let me start off this section by telling you that I am in a band. And we just decided on the name “Midnight Pancakes”. Don’t laugh. 

We needed some creative designs to accompany our social media and event posters. I was curious to see what Canva’s new text to image tool would create. 

The generator allows you to type in a text-based prompt and choose a style. I tried out a few prompts and eventually got something that was a good starting place using the prompt “pancakes with music notes and the moon”:

Test of Canva Text to Image AI

How it Fell Short

I started with the prompt “pancakes at midnight with music”. Canva didn’t seem to be able to recognize what “midnight” or “music” meant. I learned that you need to use very specific visuals for this tool, not vague ideas. 

I think it was more funny than useful. But it can certainly get the creative juices flowing.

Email Subject Line Creation
AI Tool Used: ChatGPT

Email is probably the most underrated and underestimated marketing tool of all. If you’re not working on compiling the first-party data of subscribers and sending at least an annual update to them via email, you are missing out.

But coming up with email content and then writing a subject line that won’t get buried in busy inboxes is a challenge. So I put ChatGPT up to the task. 

In my case, I had written the email already without ChatGPT’s help. I provided the full email copy and requested that ChatGPT summarize to a subject line of 60 characters or less:

How it Fell Short

As you can see, I then asked it to adjust its suggestions. Since ChatGPT didn’t have the names or personal details of subscribers, it was left with other options for defining a good subject line: urgency, curiosity, offers, relevance or timeliness. 

It did an okay job, and this gave me a good starting point for tweaking. But ultimately, a company knows its list of subscribers best. Wherever possible, content should be personalized.

Display Ad Creative
AI Tool Used: AdCreative.ai

One of my clients is a boating company, and one of their goals was to increase conversion rates through their website. A great way to do this is to utilize re-marketing (targeting your website visitors) alongside an exclusive offer. 

Creating a set of display ads for Google can be time consuming, as you want to match creative across several ad dimensions for the best reach. I had recently heard of AdCreative.ai and decided to give it a try. Quick disclaimer on this one: AdCreative.ai is not a free tool. However, it does offer a free trial. 

The site first prompts you to establish branding for your ads, with options for a website, logo, three colors, a brief company description and a font (under advanced settings). Then you can choose your display ad size and generate a preview:

Trying out AdCreative.AI for AI Display Ad Creation

Clicking “Create” takes your assets and combines them into more than 100 design variations.

How it Fell Short

 Graphic designers, you’re in luck. Of all the AI tools I use regularly, this one has the most room to improve. The AI doesn’t yet seem intelligent enough to determine the subject of an image so that it doesn’t cover it up. In addition, it won’t limit your text to fit the size of creative you’ve chosen:

Also, I didn’t love that it only allows for one photo option and that you cannot upload a light and dark logo variation. 

If you’re looking for a quick and easy ad creative that you might have to tweak a lot to get it right, this is an option. But choosing your dimensions and using a template in Canva or Indesign (or hiring a professional!) is probably a better bet for most companies.

Special Dates for Content Plan
AI Tool Used: Microsoft Bing AI Chat

One of my clients is a developer of Google Workspace Marketplace add-ons. When creating a social media content plan for them, I wanted to highlight some key dates or holidays. 

To make this process faster, I turned to Microsoft Bing Chat search. I started with as specific of a prompt as possible:

“I am a digital marketing freelancer representing a client who offers productivity apps through Google Workspace Marketplace. As part of their social media strategy, I would like to determine key dates and special events. Please provide suggestions for productivity based holidays and Google Workspace Marketplace Key Dates, such as the launch date.”

It was a bit of a double-barreled question, so I wasn’t sure how well the search engine would handle it.

Bing Chat AI for social media content calendar special dates research

How it Fell Short

This search saved me a lot of time and gave me a few options for quick and easy social media posts that would highlight relevant holidays or dates. Searching for this information link by link would have taken a lot of time. However, sometimes reading through those links can provide more opportunities, such as this article that covered even more relevant dates.

Social Media Captions
AI Tool Used: ChatGPT

The second step of my social content plan for the Google Workspace add-on developer was to prepare social media post captions. 

Within the same chat where I had provided ChatGPT with information on the developer and his add-ons, I asked it to prepare short social media caption ideas for me. Then, I prompted it to provide captions that would encourage follower engagement:

AI for social media caption generation

How it Fell Short

I noticed that each caption idea overused emojis and hashtags. In the final content plan that I pitched, my captions included more sentence structure variety.

The point of hashtags is to gain additional reach by linking the post to an idea or concept that a lot of people may be following. I questioned how popular ChatGPT’s hashtags #GoogleMagic or #EmojiFun might be. When utilizing hashtags, it’s best to go through a similar process to keyword research, where they are selected and used strategically.

Generating Alt Text for Images
AI Tool Used: Ahrefs AI Image Alt Text Generator

With around 1 billion people using Google Images daily, optimizing images for search is an opportunity you don’t want to miss out on. In addition to the SEO value, adding alt text (text that describes an image on a page) also allows visually impaired users to access your content. 

But describing each and every one of your images takes time. So I was curious how well AI would do. To test it, I submitted one of my images to Ahrefs’ free tool AI Image Alt Text Generator:

Ahrefs image alt text generator sample

How it Fell Short

Overall, I was surprised by how well the software identified the content of the image. However, I noticed that it had strangely identified the scenery as Kauai. I actually photographed this image in Moanalua valley in Oahu. 

So if you do use this software, be sure to double-check the details and tweak as needed. I also feel this tool would be most useful if it could process images in bulk, which is where this sort of task takes the most time.

AI for Marketing Summary
AI Tool Used: ChatGPT

I’ve tasked AI with summarizing this blog in 10 sentences or less. I modified it slightly to reflect my own voice, but I think AI does a great job of summarizing. Here is what it produced:

In 2023, AI has become a focal point in digital marketing. Embracing this trend, I have integrated AI into my daily routine as a digital marketing freelancer. While AI has made great strides, it still has its limitations.

For email responses, the GPT for Gmail add-on proved handy, although its formal and casual tones frequently miss the mark. In keyword research, ChatGPT excelled in brainstorming, but lacked critical data metrics. 

Ad copy creation with ChatGPT provided a useful foundation but required additional localization. Canva’s Generative Text to Image tool, while occasionally amusing, offered creative inspiration rather than precise designs. In email subject line creation, ChatGPT’s suggestions were a solid starting point, but personalization will provide a better user experience.

AdCreative.ai sped up ad creative generation, though it is not yet comparable to the visual judgment of human graphic designers. Microsoft Bing AI Chat was a valuable time-saver for content planning around special dates. For social media captions, ChatGPT’s suggestions were a little heavy on emojis and hashtags, but still time-saving. Lastly, Ahrefs’ AI Image Alt Text Generator displayed surprising proficiency in identifying image content, but some fine-tuning was needed. 

Overall, while AI tools have streamlined various aspects of digital marketing, it’s crucial to understand their strengths and limitations, and to complement their outputs with human expertise for optimal results.

Want to use AI to achieve your Digital Marketing Goals? Let’s work together.