Best Use of Video DADI Award Nomination for…Us!

We are positively thrilled to announce that a project for Glengoyne Single Malt Whisky has been nominated for Best Use of Video at the Drum’s 2016 DADI Awards. Come the 19th October we will be presenting ourselves in London for the prize-giving ceremony.

But first, a little backstory. On a rather dark and miserable November afternoon, we presented an idea for a campaign celebrating Burns Night to Glengoyne. Not long before Christmas, after an anxious wait, the email came through from the Marketing Director giving us the green light, at which point it was all hands to the proverbial pump to make sure we could deliver on the very tight schedule.

The idea centred around Glengoyne’s Family database, comprising over 50,000 fans of the brand from around the world, many of whom engage on social media on a regular basis. How – we asked ourselves –  can we bring all of these people together to celebrate our national poet’s life and showcase the incredible global reach of the Family?

Then it came to us: invite all of them to record a verse of Robert Burns’ infamous poem ‘Tae a Haggis’, collect them all, then edit the videos together to take the reading around the world, one line at a time. We were absolutely amazed by the response, with videos flooding in from the United States, Canada, Sweden, Switzerland, Germany, Australia, New Zealand, Taiwan, England and Scotland.

The result – we think – speaks for itself.

Sláinte…and naturally we’ll let you know how we get on, if we don’t see you there!

SEO Is Not Dead

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You’ve heard the rumours. You’ve seen the think-pieces discussing a year-on-year drop in organic traffic and how native mobile-apps hoover up all ‘traditional’ searches. It all points to one thing, they claim – the end of Search Engine Optimisation.

If you work in digital marketing however, you know the truth: SEO is far from dead. Now, perhaps more than ever, the fundamental principles of search engine optimisation are crucial to any successful digital marketing strategy.

But how can we prove it?

At the end of February, one of Mackerel Media’s clients came to us with a problem. Despite being a well-know, large Scottish based firm, their organic search listings  weren’t appearing on the first page – what could we do to help them?

Now anybody will tell you that, unlike the relatively fast gains that can be made through PPC marketing, search engine optimisation is about playing the long game – but there can be some quick SEO fixes that can make a real difference in a reasonably short period of time.

Our initial investigation into the client’s website revealed, among other SEO quick-fixes, that most of the firm’s pages were missing H1 headings. The H1 heading element of a page has long been a stalwart of on-page search engine optimisation – but opinion has been divided over just how much influence it has on your final position on the SERP. However, with everything else seemingly set up correctly, the missing H1’s seemed a logical explanation for the underperforming pages. The next step was to get creative…

Working closely with the client, Mackerel Media was able to introduce around sixty new H1s to pages across the clients site – ranging from sector specific keywords to high volume sector terms, retroactively adding them to complement the existing site content. In total, all of the H1s were added in less than a day.

As a result, search positions have increased dramatically, with the number of our client’s pages ranking on the first page of Google up a massive 40.74% from last month. What’s more, the number of pages which now rank in first place for our client’s keywords has increased by 52.63%.

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In just one month, Mackerel Media’s client saw a 22.72% increase in total pages ranked simply thanks to some in-depth investigation and the introduction of H1 headings. If SEO truly is dead, then we’re yet to see any evidence.

And while this is a single example, it is far from an isolated case. Every day here at Mackerel Media we see the effects a well structured, planned and executed SEO strategy. Whether a site requires a technical overhaul, on-site content improvements or an off-site outreach programme – each change you make will have an effect on how Google, and ultimately the internet as a whole, will rank your page.

So next time somebody tells you SEO is dead, remember: the right changes can make a huge difference to where your site ranks amongst its competitors… who are almost certainly all making SEO improvements as well.

What Have We Been Up To?

As anyone who has worked in an agency environment will know, constant deadlines and constant busy-ness can mean that by the time you’ve caught your breath, as I have done this week, you realise it’s April, spring has sprung and before you know it, the UK General Election will have passed and we’ll be well into summer.

So without further ado, it’s time for a brief update on some of the work team Mackerel has been up to over the last few months!

Thorntons Investments

Regulatory requirements mandated that the investment and financial advice arm of the Dundee law firm Thorntons be spun off into a new company and as such, October 2014 saw the birth of Thorntons Investments as a separate entity.

Headed up by Steven Webster, the team comprises a number of highly experienced investment and mortgage advice professionals and as a measure of their considerable success at launch, the firm had over £315m in client assets under management.

Our role was varied and detailed, ranging from searcher demand analysis, through market analysis, to site structure planning, an on-site SEO plan and advice on content.


Back in late summer 2014, we were challenged by leading global payroll firm activpayroll to deliver a comprehensive SEO strategy and campaign, which naturally we were more than happy to accept. Work started straight away, and continues on a daily basis.

The company’s success story is incredible, and it’s in no small part thanks to founder Allison Sellar’s incredible passion and dedication. She and her team have taken an accountancy firm in Aberdeen and transformed it into a truly global organisation that is taking on some of the world’s largest payroll providers and beating them hands down – long may that continue!

Redwell GB

The end of 2014 saw us delighted to win a contract to provide digital marketing strategy, planning and delivery support to infrared heating company Redwell GB, which is working hard to bring the benefits of modern IR heating to the UK. We’re working with the team to roll out our comprehensive marketing strategy that will see us target a number of key markets in both business-to-business and business-to-consumer over the coming weeks, months and year. It’s a hugely interesting project, with a hugely motivated and committed team behind it – we’re very pleased to be involved.

Glengoyne & Ian Macleod Distillers

Our work with Glengoyne Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky and its parent company Ian Macleod Distillers continues apace, and indeed our services have expanded to cover national and international social media advertising campaigns that have delivered truly staggering audience and engagement levels. A number of exciting projects are underway and under wraps, so watch this space for more.

Eagle Couriers

A little closer to home, we were delighted to be appointed to support Scotland’s leading independent courier firm Eagle Couriers in the planning and development of a new web site. Working closely with partners Holyrood PR and Digijuice, we delivered searcher demand analysis, structural planning, an on-site SEO plan and content optimisation advice. Very happily, the new site enjoys very strong organic search rankings for key search terms!

New Search Strategy & Website for Chippendale School of Furniture

I’m delighted to announce the recent launch of a project we’ve been involved in for some months – a new web site for The Chippendale International School of Furniture, based in the beautiful Haddington countryside, not far from Edinburgh.

My first encounter with the school was on a dark, wet night in November last year when I ventured out to meet Anselm Fraser, the Founder and Principal, and Christopher Lamotte of Real Marketing, who led the project. Not knowing quite what to expect, I was completely amazed when I walked through the small round doorway into the warm, bustling workshop, where a full score of students were hard at work on their woodwork projects.

A panoramic photo of the Chippendale Furniture School workshop.

Panoramic photo of a huge woodworking workshop? No problem for the iPhone 5s.

Since then we’ve worked closely with Christopher and the team at Inigo Media to plan, design and develop the site. Built using WordPress, the site consolidates three previous sites into one, presenting a single international voice to the School’s highly varied international audience.

Our role was plan a new structure, content and optimisation strategy for the site, working with the extensive data available. This also involved creating a plan for the merger of the aforementioned three sites (one for each of the US, the UK and Spain) into a single domain.

Christoper had this to say of the launch:

The Chippendale International School of Furniture’s new website is much more international in outlook, combining our UK, US and Spanish websites all together in one larger international site. We have always attracted some international students, particularly from the US, however we want to significantly increase the proportion of our 22 students from overseas.  The new website, built by Inigo Media, should appeal to students from all around the world, as well as from across the UK.

The School has been a Scottish success story for over 25 years and is increasingly regarded as the UK’s leading furniture design, making and restoration college, especially for intense one year courses  – with the support of the team at Mackerel Media we aim to build on this considerable pedigree, and ensure we have a stronger presence globally.

Have a look at the site in all its brand-new glory at

SES team member installing CWI.

Sustainable Energy Scotland Launch New Site

We’re delighted to announce the launch of a new client project we’ve been working on in conjunction with Elastic Creative for the past few months – a brand new web site for Sustainable Energy Scotland based in Dundee.

Working closely with the SES and Elastic team, our role has been to plan out and optimise the site structure, advise on content development and optimisation, and in the coming weeks and months will be to deliver a nationwide online marketing campaign.

With all that’s going on in the energy efficiency sector including the Government’s Green Deal Initiative, technological advances, new products being released on to the market, the ever-present spectre of rising fuel bills and the company’s clutch of excellent industry accreditations such as the Trustmark Scheme and the BBA Certification Scheme, it looks like Callum, David and the rest of the SES team have the perfect business at the perfect time. Launches to the UK Market

We’ve been kept very busy over the last few months with a variety of interesting and exciting client projects, one of which has been our search marketing work for, a brand new site aiming to take the UK Caravan market by storm.

The new site was developed using the Magento Ecommerce platform, and features over 9,000 products for sale and close technical integration with the company’s fulfilment centre.

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The Mackerel Media team has been involved since the inception of the project and has worked on a range of services including:

With the summer fast approaching we’re looking forward to seeing the site prosper as Britain’s 1 million caravan owners seek out bargains!

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de Prey Consulting Chooses Mackerel Media

We’re pleased to announce a brand new Pay Per Click advertising and Search Engine Optimisation client in the shape of de Prey Consulting, a new company that offers UK immigration consultancy to people around the world looking to work, live or study here in Britain.

The initial scope of the project was to research, plan, set up and manage an international Google AdWords advertising campaign targeting individuals in the company’s key markets of the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the Middle East, which we duly did.


We were subsequently engaged to provide search engine optimisation consultancy and advice for a new web site being developed by Inigo Media, which launched earlier this year and has already proven successful at encouraging potential customers to enquire.

Nikki de Prey kindly gave us a brilliant testimonial saying:

Working with Mackerel Media has been great from the start.  In my initial call to enquire about Google AdWords Nick [the MD] spoke to me in a language I understood, put me at ease that what I was wanting was possible, and was happy to spend a long time on the phone with me finding out about my marketing needs and telling me about his background.  I got several quotes at the time, and although Mackerel was not the cheapest I just couldn’t bring myself to go with anyone else!  And I’m thrilled I made that decision.  Their attention to my company and my needs has been fantastic, even though I’m small fry!  In short, Mackerel  know what they are doing, work until they get the results the client wants, and offer great customer service always with a friendly voice!  I am so glad I found them!

It’s not every day you get a quote like that from a client – thank you Nikki!

Mackerel Media Promotes Edinburgh Edge Partnership

Edinburgh Edge ScreenshotThe last few months have been particularly busy for us here at Mackerel Media and one of the exciting projects that has been keeping us occupied is a search engine marketing campaign for Edinburgh Edge, a new partnership venture between Dalmahoy, Maximillion Events and the Edinburgh International Climbing Arena (EICA). It’s particularly fitting that we were approached by the team at IfLooksCouldKill to partner up on the project.

Edinburgh Edge is a collaborative project designed to offer superb valueaccommodation, conference and activity packages in the West (or edge) of Edinburgh. The team has many years of experience working together to deliver world class events to both corporate and leisure markets.

Our work started with detailed keyword research, looking at the competitive search landscape, followed by an on-site search engine optimisation exercise to the ensure the site is as friendly to search engines as possible. A link-building campaign is underway, which will in turn be followed by a comprehensive pay-per-click campaign to drive highly targeted traffic to the site.

James-Morrow Sounds Out Mackerel Media

Here at Mackerel Towers we’ve been rather remiss in keeping the blog up-to-date, a problem that anyone in the industry will be familiar with. The truth is clients have been keeping us fully occupied, clients like James Morrow Home Entertainment Systems, with whom we’ve been working for the past few months on an organic search engine optimisation campaign.

James Morrow are one of the country’s leading hi fi and home entertainment systems retailers, with an amazing shop in Edinburgh at Tollcross and a dedicated Bose shop in Glasgow. Putting the emphasis firmly on service and advice, the company offers customers a huge range of equipment and a bespoke installation service to customers around Scotland. Brands the company carries include Sonos, Linn, Creek Audio and Cyrus amongst many others. Incidentally, if you haven’t heard a Cyrus separates system in full flow, get down there and have a listen – you’ll be amazed!

Our work covers organic optimisation of the James Morrow site, along with a healthy dose of link-building and promotion, with a particular focus on the local Edinburgh, Glasgow and Scottish markets. Already, results are looking good, with across-the-board ranking improvements for target keywords, including a number of coveted position 1 placements on Google.

Mackerel Media Catches the Scottish Tartans Authority

Being a digital marketing company, the vast majority of the work we do involves helping our clients market themselves more effectively on the web, managing search engine optimisation campaigns and pay-per-click accounts. However, we’re extremely pleased to announce that were recently appointed by the Scottish Tartans Authority to help plan and develop a business model and strategy for the online advertising opportunities they offer to their members.

Scottish Tartans Authority CrestThis is something of a poacher-turned-gamekeeper role for us and one we believe we can bring significant value to through our experience of working with advertisers and understanding exactly what they’re looking for in an advertising product and by working closely with the STA to help them bring their offer completely up-to-date and make the most of the thousands of visitors they attract every month.

Focusing primarily on display advertising, we’ve worked with the Authority to develop a business model, ensure their new site (still under wraps unfortunately) has the capability to accommodate the adverts and select, set up and manage a suitably robust ad-serving platform.

After a detailed assessment of a range of systems, we selected the tremendously powerful OpenX system and we’re very excited to be working with them using their Community Hosted product, which is a perfect match for the Authority.

Speaking of the appointment, Brian Wilton, Director of the STA said:

“Mackerel Media was highly recommended to us and I have to say that Nick Craig’s patience in explaining (more than once!) the complexities of online advertising is above and beyond the call of duty. It’s very reassuring for technical trogladytes such as to have such expert advice on tap.”

If you are a publisher looking for advice on improving your product, or if you’re an advertiser looking to get the most out of your online activity, please don’t hesitate to contact us -we’d be delighted to help you out too.