Google and Your Business – How to Make Google Work for You

By enabling other businesses to promote their products and services on the internet, Google has become one of the most successful companies in the world. There are two primary ways to be found on Google: either appearing in the organic results, or creating a Google AdWords account and becoming a Google advertiser. The image below from a search on Google for ‘castle Edinburgh’ illustrates this: the red line is around a Google AdWords ad, the blue shows organic search results.

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Any business can use both successfully, and this success should be measured (free) using Google Analytics. Employing SEO and AdWords to send relevant visitors to your website, and optimising using Google Analytics, is a successful formula, and works for nearly all businesses, from the largest to the smallest. All you need is a little knowledge to get started

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO):

SEO is the art of improving your website to ensure Google finds it easily, so that Google lists your website when a potential customer searches for something relevant to your business.

SEO is often outsourced, often needlessly. While outsourcing can be effective, it is often expensive and, at worst, dangerous if the SEO company you hire breaks Google’s rules. Thousands of businesses, from BMW to tiny local businesses, are penalised by Google for cheating, and this is usually due to their SEO agency doing questionable things.

It doesn’t have to be this way: managing SEO in-house makes sense: anyone can learn how to do it as it is largely not technical. Equipping staff with a knowledge of SEO is extremely valuable as everyone then spots SEO opportunities in their everyday jobs. A few hours spent learning the basics will demystify the subject completely.

Google AdWords

AdWords ads are pay-per-click, and allow businesses to select keywords relevant to their products and services. The business then links these keywords to ads that display to people typing in the selected keywords on Google. 90% of Google’s $50B revenues come from AdWords ads, demonstrating how effective they are for many businesses. Millions of businesses use the system, and as a self-service platform, even the tiniest of businesses can use it in-house. Google rewards relevant advertising with cheaper clicks, so learning the basics will really pay off

Google Analytics
The largest organisations, including Google itself, use Google Analytics to analyse their website performance, but the beauty of Google Analytics is that you will find valuable insights whatever the size of your organisation. Creating an account is straight-forward, and anyone can read the reports, you don’t need to be technical. Once you have an account you will be able to access data on many aspects of your website’s performance, from whether it works for mobile, to analysing the effectiveness of an email newsletter or Facebook page.

To learn more about SEO, AdWords or Google Analytics, book on one of Edinburgh Chamber’s courses, run in conjunction with former Google employee Lucy Johnston from Bread & Butter Marketing, an official Google AdWords Certified Partner.

The next Google Analytics course is on the 2nd of September
The next Google AdWords and SEO course is on the 4th of September

ECC CEO Herald article

Overall business in Edinburgh and Scotland continues to benefit from a rich pool of talent.

It is no coincidence that Edinburgh is second to London in average gross earnings per resident. Edinburgh is a leading European city in terms of providing one of the most highly educated work forces. Working age residents educated to degree level or above in Edinburgh now stands at 42%.

This growing pool of talent is a critical success factor in attracting and retaining leading global brands as well as a thriving business community for business start-ups. Scotland’s international reach is growing as we continue to expand in new markets and business sectors.

Ensuring education providers understand the changing skills needs and strategic focus of the business community is key – particularly as competition in attracting and retaining talent continues to grow geographically.
At Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce, our strategic partnerships within higher and further education establishments are helping bring business and education even more closely together. Our Economic Development Groups on Digital, Tourism and Infrastructure all have ‘talent’ as a key enabler to deliver sustainable growth.
We must also ensure that businesses view training and development as an investment rather than a cost. Too often these budgets fall victim to savings targets in annual budget processes.

Scotland offers unique and special relationships between the public and private sectors regarding education and business support. Ensuring we continue to share best practice is essential to optimising value and effectiveness.

There is a plethora of short and long term training opportunities for employees at all levels and developments in technology are improving opportunities to access affordable and effective training.
It should not only be our top sports stars who are openly proud to explain how many coaches they have! We need to see more ongoing development initiatives as we strive to develop the best leaders in the future.
We must also challenge ourselves to ensure our talent is fit to compete in a global market. This includes learning new languages and building knowledge and expertise in doing business overseas.

In Edinburgh and Scotland, we have every reason to be proud of our track record. As the business world becomes even more digitally connected, labour more mobile and our competitors grow in confidence; we must ensure we set even higher standards across all levels of business.

The quality of talent has been fundamental to our success in the past and will continue to be a key differentiator in the future.

David Birrell, Chief Executive Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce

BIG Partnership again named UK’s top PR agency outside London

PR and digital marketing agency The BIG Partnership has maintained its position as the UK’s largest agency outside of London in the industry’s most authoritative annual survey.

BIG also moved up the PR Week annual top 150 agencies survey to become the 33rd largest consultancy in the UK.

BIG has now been the top agency outside London for the last six years.

During 2013, BIG saw its fee income grow by nine per cent to just over £7m from £6.4m.

Founding Director Alex Barr said: “We are seeing major growth in digital communications, where our team is now 25 strong and our total headcount numbers more than 100 people. We’re also encouraged that 2014 is shaping up to be an even better year than last.”

BIG employs 107 people across its five offices in Glasgow, Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Fife and Liverpool.

Invitation to the Exhibition at the Téte-a-Téte Gallery

The Téte-a-Téte Gallery at Fringe Venue 348 (52 Blackfriars Street, EH1 1NE) is currently showing a collection of more than forty original photographs comparing the street, architecture and interiors of Edinburgh and Paris. Both are narrow views of the city and only include the old town and arrondisment 17th and 18th. This exhibition is free and is open 10.30am-7.30pm until the 31st August 2014 (closed on Mondays).

For more information please follow the link:


Shaping the Digital Future

Colin Loveday, Managing Director of 4G Scotland, outlines how business will be done in the future and how Edinburgh Chamber is ensuring its members’ needs and views are heard and understood.

Remember dial-up? Remember how our initial wonder over the internet turned to frustration as web pages slowly appeared on screen?

For many of us, it really isn’t so very long ago that the internet was very new and often very slow. Since then, the pace of change has been rapid with easier, speedier access from a whole range of devices.

A generation is growing up in a digital dominated world, where social media as a business driving force is the norm. We are all touched by a digital strategy of some kind.

It’s been fast and furious – but as the saying goes, you ain’t seen nothing yet! That is why Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce has established an Inspiring Digital policy group, which I chair.

We need to make sure that we – businesses – make sure our voice is heard by policy-makers when it comes to ensuring we have all the access we need to remain competitive in the digital future.

Without pre-empting any outcomes, I would like to share some thoughts on four universal digital market drivers that have an increasing impact on business – People, Connectivity, Data, and Materials.

Regarding People, Generation Y are a cadre of tech-savvy individuals who have grown up with ever-increasing ways to communicate using technology. This is important as the older part of this group will soon be in boardrooms, which will have a profound effect on the way businesses communicate.

No longer will a basic phone and laptop be the tools that get business done, with social media rationed in the work place. Increasingly it is the work place.

Digital Natives are people who know nothing other than the connected “it just works” digital world. As they move through education there will be a greater understanding on how the nuts and bolts of digital work. Coding needs to be considered as a vital skill for the future in the same vein as the three Rs.

Connectivity speeds and availability have increased beyond all recognition. There are still major challenges to be overcome but 4G mobile networks now allow out of home or office connectivity at speeds equal to, and often much faster, than broadband. This provides the final piece of the connectivity mosaic along with fibre and fixed line broadband that will enable creativity and content to bloom.

Data is now a firm fixture in the cloud. Accessing it anytime, anyplace and without restriction is the de facto requirement. There are a number of internets being created that are vital to our future growth, not least the “internet of things”, or machine to machine communications.

Materials help shape the devices through which we access our information and we are going to see extraordinary developments. For example, Graphene, a material discovered in 2010, one molecule thick, immensely strong, flexible and that carries an electrical charge, will shape new devices.

Digital is democratising the way we do things and is constantly disrupting existing industries and practices. Digital technology is inspiring new ways of looking at our world. The future
is very exciting.

To read the full magazine online please follow the link or if you would like to be sent a copy please contact



Hudson appoints new management team in Scotland

Talent solutions company Hudson has strengthened its management team in Scotland with the creation of three new roles.

Brian Cameron, Lesley Cameron and Kate McClorey have all been promoted to Regional Director, a role that will see them lead the development of Hudson in Scotland.

Brian Cameron joined Hudson in 2004 and has extensive experience in working with clients operating in a variety of sectors including financial services, industry and professional services. Working across all three of Hudson’s offices in Scotland, his role as Regional Director will see him lead the Finance and Accounting business, as well as oil and gas, supply chain and procurement and sales, marketing and communications.

Also appointed to Regional Director is Lesley Cameron, who will focus upon HR, office support, contact centre and project solutions, as well as construction, property, engineering and manufacturing. Lesley joined Hudson in 2004 and works with leading organisations of all sizes on their recruitment strategies.

The IT and legal sector teams will be led by Kate McClorey. Having joined Hudson in 2008 as Director of IT for the Scottish business, her wealth of experience within the recruitment sector has seen her provide innovative and creative solutions for a diverse range of clients.

Managing Director of Hudson UK and Ireland, Peter Istead said: “Hudson is a market leader in Scotland. The new management team in the region will be focused on consolidating and building upon that position and growing the market share of new focus areas.

“The newly appointed leadership team has a wealth of specialist experience and will further enhance the service we provide to our clients.”

To read the whole magazine online please follow the link: or to receive a copy please email

Annual Summer Party

ECC Summer Party

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The Annual ECC Summer Party in association with Utility Wise was a tremendous hit on Thursday night (14.08.2014). This year our delegates headed to city centre venue “Surgeons Hall” for a fantastic night of networking and even some surprise entertainment from Mercat Prezents. Over 80 attendees enjoyed the superb festival venue, while the rain managing to hold off for most of the night.

Surgeons Hall were wonderful hosts with members enjoying plenty to drink and eat with the famous Surgeons Hall BBQ chefs on hand. The chosen charity of the night for the raffle was the Homeless World Cup, and members raised over £330 for this event which is happening in Santiago, Chile in October. Thanks to all members who provided prizes!

Special thanks to ABO Photography for taking pictures on the evening. The full range of photos will be on our Facebook page shortly.