Tag: Content Marketing

#TheVoiceofSocialMedia Episode on the Mike Armstrong Podcast Show – #KingofMarketing

Listen to the most recent episode of my podcast: #TheVoiceofSocialMedia #KingOfMarketing talking about LinkedIn Pods 🎙& LinkedIn Marketing Strategies https://anchor.fm/mike-armstrong9/episodes/TheVoiceofSocialMedia-KingOfMarketing-talking-about-LinkedIn-Pods–LinkedIn-Marketing-Strategies-eg04so

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

#MikeArmstrong #KingofMarketing #Podcast – Search Marketing and SEO Advice – #MikeArmstrongPodcasts

Listen to the most recent episode of my podcast: #KingofMarketing #MikeArmstrong talking about Search Marketing and Search Engine Optimisation / SEO😎 https://anchor.fm/mike-armstrong9/episodes/KingofMarketing-MikeArmstrong-talking-about-Search-Marketing-and-Search-Engine-Optimisation–SEO-ef97r3

#KingofMarketing #MikeArmstrong talking about Search Marketing and Search Engine Optimisation / SEO 👑 😎💪🙌🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿🇬🇧🌍 – Another King of Marketing Episode #KingofMarketing – The Importance of getting your search marketing right for those switching to online 🐺🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 #MikeArmstrong #YouCanDoIt #PositivityPodcast #Motivation #MotivationalPodcast #Entrepreneurship #PersonalDevelopmentPodcast #SalesPodcast #MarketingPodcast 😎 #Sales #Marketing #PersonalDevelopment #WOLFofWALES #WOW #WOWPodcast #SalesTraining #LifeCoaching #BusinessTraining from #MikeArmstrong Teaching people how to achieve their goals and dreams via various motivation, education and personal development teachings! #MikeArmstrongSalesTraining #MikeArmstronarketingTraining #MikeArmstrongBusinessTraining #MikeArmstrongEntrepreneurTraining #MikeArmstrongTraining #MATraining on his #YouCanDoItPodcast – #MikeArmstrongPodcast / #MikeArmstrongPodcasts – Rapid Business Growth, Personal Development and Sales & Marketing Training & Advice From #MikeArmstrong on the #YouCanDoItPodcast #YCDI #YCDIPodcast featuring the #Awesome Mike Armstrong #AwesomeArmstrong – #Motivation #Motivated #Motivational #MotivationalPodcast – #10x #20x #Infinityx  #BusinessGrowth #RapidBusinessGrowth #PersonalGrowth #PersonalDevelopment 🚀😎 – #MikeArmstrongYouCanDoItPodcast – More About Mike;  Mike is “The Awesome Mike Armstrong” – A #Philanthropic #Entrepreneur who loves to help people. He’s also an Author, Speaker, Mentor, Coach, Blogger, Vlogger & Podcaster who lives to help people especially; Struggling Business Owners and Entrepreneurs who need a lift and those suffering with Mental Health issues #MentalHealth #MentalWellbeing #MentalHealthSupport. Mike has spent years cultivating an awesome global network, and is currently building an #AwesomeArmy of similarly minded #Philanthropist #Entrepreneurs and is happy to share the contacts and the love with those who are deserving. If that’s you please get in touch with Mike. Mike Armstrong of Mike Armstrong Ltd | MA Group | MA Consultancy | MA Web | MA Training | Marketing Wales / WelshBiz | Tourism Wales | Things To Do In | MA News | MAN Media | MA Property | Mike Armstrong News & Mike Armstrong’s You Can Do It Podcast.

Mike’s areas of Interest and Expertise include Welsh Business News & Events, UK Business News & Events, Global Business News & Events, Business Advice & Personal Development, Rapid Business Growth, Happiness, Success, Goal Achieving, Knowledge Sharing, Elite Performance, as well as Sales & Marketing Mentoring, Coaching, Training and Services inc. Sales & Marketing Strategy & Services, Social Media Strategy & Services, SEO Strategy & Services, Content Marketing Strategy & Services, Ecommerce Strategy & Services, Business Growth Strategy & Services and Property Maintenance, Property Management and Property Development Joint Ventures (JV’s) – All aimed at Biz Owners, Entrepreneurs, Speakers, Coaches, Startups, Networkers, Global Networks and people in need of help, support, love and a lick me up etc.

MA Website – https://mikearmstrong.me #MikeArmstrong

MA News Site – https://MikeArmstrong.me/news/

#MikeArmstrongNews

#MikeArmstrongPoems

#PositiveCoronavirusNews

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#MikeArmstrongPodcasts

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Co. Websites – www.maconsultancycardiff.com #MAConsultancy

www.marketing.wales  #WelshBiz

Search & connect with Mike Armstrong in any social media as well as MA Consultancy & WelshBiz!

Also pls join one or all of my Cardiff Businesses, Welsh Businesses, UK Businesses, Global Businesses, Global Networkers, Entrepreneur Zone, Wolf of Wales Fans, Mental Health Support Group, or Mike Armstrong Podcast Fans – Groups on FB 👍😎 or the #AwesomeArmy of you want to get involved and join the team!

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Great Content Marketing Poscast…

Check out this podcast on Goodpods. The Content 10x Podcast is full of great content marketing tips and advice – https://goodpods.app.link/R25rjFEpp6

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

3 Ways to Change Your Content & Social Marketing To Foster Digital Empathy

These days, when we are no longer sure what tomorrow is going to bring and most of us are isolated from the rest of the world, we all feel extremely vulnerable and insecure.

This is the time when brands and businesses are uniting forces to spread love and help people cope with fear and isolation.

For example, Facebook has launched the care button helping its users empathize and sympathize with one another. Guinness issued a supportive commercial to emphasize the importance of social distancing and kindness instead of promoting its usual agenda.

If you have content to give away, now is the best time to do that. For example, instead of extending free trial offers like many companies did, Audible offered a huge part of its premium content free of charge, with no app or account needed to access it. To access the free content, people can simply use Audible’s player that requires no downloading or registration.

You don’t have to be a huge brand to be helpful. WP Beginner’s founder has put together a mega guide to help people losing jobs to find a way to build income online.

This is the kind of empathy brands need to be striving: No strings attached.

Now that humanity is facing a lot of uncertainty, business owners and marketers need to take a long-term view. While keeping your business afloat must still be our top priority, changing the focus from increasing revenue to fostering empathy is key to stability.

In this trying time, marketers need to find the way for their brands to communicate compassion, and not for the sake of increased revenue. Your brand image is what can help your business survive.

Not every brand can afford to be a caregiver but all of us should be doing our best at helping one another make it through these difficult times.

Newsjacking needs to give way to genuine empathy.

What is Digital Empathy?

Emotional empathy is a human being’s capacity to feel the emotions of another.

Empathy helps create a better marketing strategy by pushing brands to imagine how their target customers may feel when hearing the marketing message or using the product in question.

Empathic marketing approach has also proven to build trust through genuine customer-centricity.

How Can Content Marketing Foster Digital Empathy?

Create a Genuinely Useful Resource

Creating an education resource has always been a somewhat selfish endeavor, at least when brands were investing in it. They were trying to get links back and/or traffic in exchange for investing in a purely informational content asset.

These days, investing in being helpful to the community is more than a marketing tactic. It is part of guiding your past and potential customers through these difficult times, making their lives easier. It’s giving back to the world.

To create a genuinely useful resource, use niche question research. Text Optimizer provides a helpful tool allowing you to uncover questions your target customers are looking to answer.

Text Optimizer

According to a report done by Edelman, the overwhelming majority of consumers – over 80% – want brands to use their voices to educate, so this is the best and the safest tactic you can embrace now.

Now that lots of people are actively looking for ways to use the time at home productively and educate themselves, the best you can do is to use your internal company’s expertise, tools and products to build something really helpful and practical. Here are the tools to put together a knowledge base or a wiki to get you started.

Avoid Making Misleading Claims

Nowadays all businesses are trying to maintain or even increase sales by figuring out how their product line fits into the new reality. This approach may be dangerous as this strategy may result in insensitive and misleading claims.

For example, a bank informing customers how to use its tools to keep their finances safe is appreciated. However a drink manufacturer building content on how their product will keep you hydrated if you get sick is a plain PR stunt.

When you are planning your content strategy around current pandemic, always ask yourself important questions:

  • Is this content going to be genuinely helpful and useful?
  • Do I (or my writers) have a solid expertise in this new angle?
  • Is the tone going to be neutral?
  • Is this piece going to be scientifically supported?

Providing good references to trusted resources is always a good idea, especially if you mention any health-related tips.

Search Google for [keyword site:GOV] to find official and government-supported sources to include:

Search Google for [keyword site:GOV]

If You Have Nothing to Contribute, Say Nothing

The brands’ willingness to exploit COVID-19 pandemic has been so obvious, it has resulted in lots of hilarious memes.

When businesses are being criticized and lose credibility, the best thing you can do is to stay away. If you are not sure your message is helpful and genuine enough, just keep silent until you are sure.

This strategy will pay off: When finally your voice is needed, you will be heard.

It may be tempting to speak up now while it is still hot news, but brands are as vulnerable these days as are consumers. Take your time figuring how to refocus your content marketing strategy the way it is both safe to your brand message and helpful for the community.

Brands need to define a credible role they are playing, or step back and say nothing.

Include your co-workers in crafting your content marketing plan and evaluating it. They may provide you with some insight into how different people may react to your message and how to make it more helpful.

If collaboration hasn’t been part of your content marketing routine, now is a good time that you streamline and foster your in-company communication. Nextiva offers a solutions for improved internal business communication by consolidating all kinds of communication apps together:

The more efficiently information is shared throughout the company, the more thoughtful marketing strategy you will be able to set up.

This Crisis is Not About YOU

Finally, this is not about you or your brand. This crisis is about everyone in the world.

Try making it about you and risk facing a serious reputational crisis. This is both McDonald and Volkswagen trying to hijack the “social distancing” approach by changing their own logos did get them into the news outlets but failed to impress anyone.

These days the risk of a long-term negative brand association is far greater than a quick wins.

Earn your customers’ trust now and they will stick around long after the crisis is over. According to the aforementioned report from Edelman, over 70% of consumers claim they will lose trust in a brand if their marketing message is putting profit over people.

It has long been a valid marketing tactic to pick up on the latest trends and adapt your marketing to tune into the interest peak. But in these months of stress and uncertainty, marketers need to be extra careful and avoid betting on the target customer’s vulnerability.

It is time that brands should urge authenticity and embrace digital empathy. Marketers need to use a thoughtful approach to PR and focus on authenticity and action.

Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

Join 100,000+ fellow marketers who advance their skills and knowledge by subscribing to our weekly newsletter.


The post 3 Ways to Change Your Content & Social Marketing To Foster Digital Empathy appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/05/3-ways-to-change-your-content-social-marketing-to-foster-digital-empathy/

3 Ways to Change Your Content & Social Marketing To Foster Digital Empathy

These days, when we are no longer sure what tomorrow is going to bring and most of us are isolated from the rest of the world, we all feel extremely vulnerable and insecure.

This is the time when brands and businesses are uniting forces to spread love and help people cope with fear and isolation.

For example, Facebook has launched the care button helping its users empathize and sympathize with one another. Guinness issued a supportive commercial to emphasize the importance of social distancing and kindness instead of promoting its usual agenda.

If you have content to give away, now is the best time to do that. For example, instead of extending free trial offers like many companies did, Audible offered a huge part of its premium content free of charge, with no app or account needed to access it. To access the free content, people can simply use Audible’s player that requires no downloading or registration.

You don’t have to be a huge brand to be helpful. WP Beginner’s founder has put together a mega guide to help people losing jobs to find a way to build income online.

This is the kind of empathy brands need to be striving: No strings attached.

Now that humanity is facing a lot of uncertainty, business owners and marketers need to take a long-term view. While keeping your business afloat must still be our top priority, changing the focus from increasing revenue to fostering empathy is key to stability.

In this trying time, marketers need to find the way for their brands to communicate compassion, and not for the sake of increased revenue. Your brand image is what can help your business survive.

Not every brand can afford to be a caregiver but all of us should be doing our best at helping one another make it through these difficult times.

Newsjacking needs to give way to genuine empathy.

What is Digital Empathy?

Emotional empathy is a human being’s capacity to feel the emotions of another.

Empathy helps create a better marketing strategy by pushing brands to imagine how their target customers may feel when hearing the marketing message or using the product in question.

Empathic marketing approach has also proven to build trust through genuine customer-centricity.

How Can Content Marketing Foster Digital Empathy?

Create a Genuinely Useful Resource

Creating an education resource has always been a somewhat selfish endeavor, at least when brands were investing in it. They were trying to get links back and/or traffic in exchange for investing in a purely informational content asset.

These days, investing in being helpful to the community is more than a marketing tactic. It is part of guiding your past and potential customers through these difficult times, making their lives easier. It’s giving back to the world.

To create a genuinely useful resource, use niche question research. Text Optimizer provides a helpful tool allowing you to uncover questions your target customers are looking to answer.

Text Optimizer

According to a report done by Edelman, the overwhelming majority of consumers – over 80% – want brands to use their voices to educate, so this is the best and the safest tactic you can embrace now.

Now that lots of people are actively looking for ways to use the time at home productively and educate themselves, the best you can do is to use your internal company’s expertise, tools and products to build something really helpful and practical. Here are the tools to put together a knowledge base or a wiki to get you started.

Avoid Making Misleading Claims

Nowadays all businesses are trying to maintain or even increase sales by figuring out how their product line fits into the new reality. This approach may be dangerous as this strategy may result in insensitive and misleading claims.

For example, a bank informing customers how to use its tools to keep their finances safe is appreciated. However a drink manufacturer building content on how their product will keep you hydrated if you get sick is a plain PR stunt.

When you are planning your content strategy around current pandemic, always ask yourself important questions:

  • Is this content going to be genuinely helpful and useful?
  • Do I (or my writers) have a solid expertise in this new angle?
  • Is the tone going to be neutral?
  • Is this piece going to be scientifically supported?

Providing good references to trusted resources is always a good idea, especially if you mention any health-related tips.

Search Google for [keyword site:GOV] to find official and government-supported sources to include:

Search Google for [keyword site:GOV]

If You Have Nothing to Contribute, Say Nothing

The brands’ willingness to exploit COVID-19 pandemic has been so obvious, it has resulted in lots of hilarious memes.

When businesses are being criticized and lose credibility, the best thing you can do is to stay away. If you are not sure your message is helpful and genuine enough, just keep silent until you are sure.

This strategy will pay off: When finally your voice is needed, you will be heard.

It may be tempting to speak up now while it is still hot news, but brands are as vulnerable these days as are consumers. Take your time figuring how to refocus your content marketing strategy the way it is both safe to your brand message and helpful for the community.

Brands need to define a credible role they are playing, or step back and say nothing.

Include your co-workers in crafting your content marketing plan and evaluating it. They may provide you with some insight into how different people may react to your message and how to make it more helpful.

If collaboration hasn’t been part of your content marketing routine, now is a good time that you streamline and foster your in-company communication. Nextiva offers a solutions for improved internal business communication by consolidating all kinds of communication apps together:

The more efficiently information is shared throughout the company, the more thoughtful marketing strategy you will be able to set up.

This Crisis is Not About YOU

Finally, this is not about you or your brand. This crisis is about everyone in the world.

Try making it about you and risk facing a serious reputational crisis. This is both McDonald and Volkswagen trying to hijack the “social distancing” approach by changing their own logos did get them into the news outlets but failed to impress anyone.

These days the risk of a long-term negative brand association is far greater than a quick wins.

Earn your customers’ trust now and they will stick around long after the crisis is over. According to the aforementioned report from Edelman, over 70% of consumers claim they will lose trust in a brand if their marketing message is putting profit over people.

It has long been a valid marketing tactic to pick up on the latest trends and adapt your marketing to tune into the interest peak. But in these months of stress and uncertainty, marketers need to be extra careful and avoid betting on the target customer’s vulnerability.

It is time that brands should urge authenticity and embrace digital empathy. Marketers need to use a thoughtful approach to PR and focus on authenticity and action.

Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

Join 100,000+ fellow marketers who advance their skills and knowledge by subscribing to our weekly newsletter.


The post 3 Ways to Change Your Content & Social Marketing To Foster Digital Empathy appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/05/3-ways-to-change-your-content-social-marketing-to-foster-digital-empathy/

3 Ways to Change Your Content & Social Marketing To Foster Digital Empathy

These days, when we are no longer sure what tomorrow is going to bring and most of us are isolated from the rest of the world, we all feel extremely vulnerable and insecure.

This is the time when brands and businesses are uniting forces to spread love and help people cope with fear and isolation.

For example, Facebook has launched the care button helping its users empathize and sympathize with one another. Guinness issued a supportive commercial to emphasize the importance of social distancing and kindness instead of promoting its usual agenda.

If you have content to give away, now is the best time to do that. For example, instead of extending free trial offers like many companies did, Audible offered a huge part of its premium content free of charge, with no app or account needed to access it. To access the free content, people can simply use Audible’s player that requires no downloading or registration.

You don’t have to be a huge brand to be helpful. WP Beginner’s founder has put together a mega guide to help people losing jobs to find a way to build income online.

This is the kind of empathy brands need to be striving: No strings attached.

Now that humanity is facing a lot of uncertainty, business owners and marketers need to take a long-term view. While keeping your business afloat must still be our top priority, changing the focus from increasing revenue to fostering empathy is key to stability.

In this trying time, marketers need to find the way for their brands to communicate compassion, and not for the sake of increased revenue. Your brand image is what can help your business survive.

Not every brand can afford to be a caregiver but all of us should be doing our best at helping one another make it through these difficult times.

Newsjacking needs to give way to genuine empathy.

What is Digital Empathy?

Emotional empathy is a human being’s capacity to feel the emotions of another.

Empathy helps create a better marketing strategy by pushing brands to imagine how their target customers may feel when hearing the marketing message or using the product in question.

Empathic marketing approach has also proven to build trust through genuine customer-centricity.

How Can Content Marketing Foster Digital Empathy?

Create a Genuinely Useful Resource

Creating an education resource has always been a somewhat selfish endeavor, at least when brands were investing in it. They were trying to get links back and/or traffic in exchange for investing in a purely informational content asset.

These days, investing in being helpful to the community is more than a marketing tactic. It is part of guiding your past and potential customers through these difficult times, making their lives easier. It’s giving back to the world.

To create a genuinely useful resource, use niche question research. Text Optimizer provides a helpful tool allowing you to uncover questions your target customers are looking to answer.

Text Optimizer

According to a report done by Edelman, the overwhelming majority of consumers – over 80% – want brands to use their voices to educate, so this is the best and the safest tactic you can embrace now.

Now that lots of people are actively looking for ways to use the time at home productively and educate themselves, the best you can do is to use your internal company’s expertise, tools and products to build something really helpful and practical. Here are the tools to put together a knowledge base or a wiki to get you started.

Avoid Making Misleading Claims

Nowadays all businesses are trying to maintain or even increase sales by figuring out how their product line fits into the new reality. This approach may be dangerous as this strategy may result in insensitive and misleading claims.

For example, a bank informing customers how to use its tools to keep their finances safe is appreciated. However a drink manufacturer building content on how their product will keep you hydrated if you get sick is a plain PR stunt.

When you are planning your content strategy around current pandemic, always ask yourself important questions:

  • Is this content going to be genuinely helpful and useful?
  • Do I (or my writers) have a solid expertise in this new angle?
  • Is the tone going to be neutral?
  • Is this piece going to be scientifically supported?

Providing good references to trusted resources is always a good idea, especially if you mention any health-related tips.

Search Google for [keyword site:GOV] to find official and government-supported sources to include:

Search Google for [keyword site:GOV]

If You Have Nothing to Contribute, Say Nothing

The brands’ willingness to exploit COVID-19 pandemic has been so obvious, it has resulted in lots of hilarious memes.

When businesses are being criticized and lose credibility, the best thing you can do is to stay away. If you are not sure your message is helpful and genuine enough, just keep silent until you are sure.

This strategy will pay off: When finally your voice is needed, you will be heard.

It may be tempting to speak up now while it is still hot news, but brands are as vulnerable these days as are consumers. Take your time figuring how to refocus your content marketing strategy the way it is both safe to your brand message and helpful for the community.

Brands need to define a credible role they are playing, or step back and say nothing.

Include your co-workers in crafting your content marketing plan and evaluating it. They may provide you with some insight into how different people may react to your message and how to make it more helpful.

If collaboration hasn’t been part of your content marketing routine, now is a good time that you streamline and foster your in-company communication. Nextiva offers a solutions for improved internal business communication by consolidating all kinds of communication apps together:

The more efficiently information is shared throughout the company, the more thoughtful marketing strategy you will be able to set up.

This Crisis is Not About YOU

Finally, this is not about you or your brand. This crisis is about everyone in the world.

Try making it about you and risk facing a serious reputational crisis. This is both McDonald and Volkswagen trying to hijack the “social distancing” approach by changing their own logos did get them into the news outlets but failed to impress anyone.

These days the risk of a long-term negative brand association is far greater than a quick wins.

Earn your customers’ trust now and they will stick around long after the crisis is over. According to the aforementioned report from Edelman, over 70% of consumers claim they will lose trust in a brand if their marketing message is putting profit over people.

It has long been a valid marketing tactic to pick up on the latest trends and adapt your marketing to tune into the interest peak. But in these months of stress and uncertainty, marketers need to be extra careful and avoid betting on the target customer’s vulnerability.

It is time that brands should urge authenticity and embrace digital empathy. Marketers need to use a thoughtful approach to PR and focus on authenticity and action.

Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

Join 100,000+ fellow marketers who advance their skills and knowledge by subscribing to our weekly newsletter.


The post 3 Ways to Change Your Content & Social Marketing To Foster Digital Empathy appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/05/3-ways-to-change-your-content-social-marketing-to-foster-digital-empathy/

Morning Motivation Today comes from the #MikeArmstrongPodcast

#MikeArmstrongsPodcast

#MorningMotivation for those in the #Coronavirus #Lockdown #WorkingFromHomr from #MikeArmstrong via the #MikeArmstrongPodcast #Lockdownbenefits #LockdownNotLetdown #GetCreative #GetCreating #WriteABook #StartAPodcast #Podcasting #Podcasts #PositivityPodcast #Positivity #PMA #PositiveMentalAttitide #WhoKnowsYou ##GetInvolved #MotivationFromTheSituation #WhenTheGoingGetsToughTheToughGetsGoing #ReadBooks #WatchFilms #GetEducated #GetLearning #BeActive #Marketing #ContentCreation #ContentMarketing #ChooseLife #Thrive #TimeToLive #Covid19 #WFH #Wales #UK

Good Morning and have a great day 👍 For more Inspiration, Motivation and Positivity please see our recently penned Coronavirus Poems – Kick Corona’s Ass #KickCoronasAssThe Upside of Coronavirus #CoronavirusUpsideHow to make a diamond #HowtomakeadiamondCoronavirus Business Poem #CoronavirusBusinessPoemThe Lockdown Choice #LockdownChoiceHow to Navigate the Wall #HowToNavigateTheWall

#MikeArmstrong / #MikeArmstrongPoems

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

10 Ways to Increase Your Content Marketing Conversion Rate [Infographic]

Looking to maximize your content results? Check out these landing page tips. 

https://www.socialmediatoday.com/news/10-ways-to-increase-your-content-marketing-conversion-rate-infographic/574148/

9 Great Content Marketing Tips (Blogging & Social Media Narketing Tips), From Buffet

” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>We’ve experimented with lots of different content marketing methods at Buffer, so I wanted to share with you 9 of the best ways we’ve found to increase engagement and improve your content strategy.

Especially after launching Buffer for Business recently, a lot of business approached us, asking which practical tips we had for them to improve their social media and content marketing.

So here are our best and most practical ways to see a big impact from your actions on social media:

1. Share Images on Twitter: Increase Retweets by 150%

Since Twitter announced inline images, we’ve been experimenting with this change by adding images to a lot of the tweets from our @buffer Twitter account and have noticed a big difference in the engagement we’re getting. To get a better idea of what a difference inline images has made, I took the last 100 Tweets including a link from our @buffer account (not including any Retweets) and compared the averages of the tweets with and without images included.

Using Buffer’s built-in analytics, I was able to look at the number of clicks, favorites and Retweets each of our Tweets received.

” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

The first data point we looked at was clicks:

” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

Our click-through rate did grow, but not by very much. My theory on this is that with an inline image, there’s more content for the user to consume without leaving Twitter (which is probably what Twitter wants), so they’re not much more likely to click-through. Of course, that’s just a theory so it’ll be interesting to see what the data says over a longer time period as we keep experimenting with this.

” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

Favorites increased quite a lot. Along with Retweets in the graph below, this shows a lot more engagement with the Tweets themselves. Clicks, on the other hand, show engagement with the original content.

” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

2. Share Content More Than Once

We often share our blog posts multiple times on social networks, for a few difference reasons. Some of the biggest benefits we get are more traffic, reaching people in different time zones and sharing our content with people who’ve followed us since we last posted it.

1. More Traffic

The first, and perhaps most obvious, reason to share your content more than once is to drive more traffic that the initial share.

Tom Tunguz did an experiment on his own blog to show how reposting the same content helped him to boost traffic.

To get an idea of how many people were seeing and sharing his posts, Tom looked at the number of Retweets he got when Tweeting a link to one of his blog posts. We can assume from this that actual visits to his posts increased with each Retweet, as well.

” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

With each subsequent Tweet of an existing blog post, Tom noticed that he got around 75% as many Retweets as the time before.

We’ve also noticed that Tweeting posts from the Buffer blog more than once gives us more traffic and more engagement (favorites, Retweets).

Here’s an example where we’ve done this:

” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

2. Hit multiple time zones

Guy Kawasaki is known for posting the same content multiple times, and one reason he advocates doing this is to reach your followers in different time zones. He’s found that this increases the traffic to his content, particularly when Tweeting the same link several times:

The reason for repeated tweets is to maximize traffic and therefore advertising sales. I’ve found that each tweet gets approximately the same amount of clickthroughs. Why get 600 page views when you can get 2,400?

Guy generally repeats Tweets of his blog posts (with minor variations) four times each, to hit different time zones:

We provide content repeatedly because people live in different time zones and have different social media habits.

3. Reach your new followers

Something we’ve noticed at Buffer is that a lot of our posts are still relevant months after we publish them. The other thing that changes after we publish a post is that more people follow us on social networks, so if we repost content from our blog that’s six months old, many of our followers will be seeing it for the first time, so they’ll get value out of it even though it’s old content.

You can use a tool like Twitter Counterto track your follower growth, so you know when it’s a good time to repost some of your older content.

3. A/B Test on Social Networks

Since we usually post the same content to Twitter multiple times, we take advantage of this opportunity to test out what headline works best for the blog post.

Here’s how we usually run that kind of experiment:

  1. Find 2 headlines for an article that you think will perform well.
  2. Tweet both of these headlines at roughly the same time, at least 1 hour apart. We’ve found that posting the two Tweets both in the morning or both in the afternoon works best.
  3. Compare the data for each Tweet to find the best headline for your blog post.

Here’s an example of the analytics from a headline experiment we did on this blog post:

First tweet:

” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

Second tweet:

” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

The second Tweet clearly performed better as we found out through our social analytics and Buffer’s algorithm also identified it as a top Tweet. In fact, you can clearly see that the second headline got double the number of clicks.

When we see a big difference in engagement on a different headline like that, we usually go back to the original post and change the title itself (the URL never changes, just the heading of the post).

4. Reframe Content to Suit Your Audience

Something we try to do each time we post a piece of content is to slightly reframe it so we’re not just repeating ourselves.

Here’s an example of how we might do that on Facebook.

First, we post the actual link:

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Then we go and post only one image to explain part of the post:

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This way we can sometimes get double or even triple the amount of engagement by highlighting different elements of the content each time we post it. We often do this on Twitter as well.

First we publish it as a link:

Then, taking advantage of Twitter’s new expanded images feature, we publish it as an image and reframing it:

You can simply right click any image on the web with Buffer’s browser extensions for Firefox and Chrome to share a new image post on Twitter or Facebook, that according to the latest social media statistics, will garner significant more clicks, Retweets and favorites.

We also try slightly different wording each time we post the same thing, like this:

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5. Re-Buffer Posts and Buffer Native Retweets

A fairly recent feature we added to Buffer is the ability to drag-and-drop updates. You can now easily copy updates from your Twitter account to your Facebook account. For example:

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And you can also copy past updates back into your Buffer queue, which is really useful for getting more out of popular posts:

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Another neat feature of Buffer is that you can schedule native Retweets from Twitter.com. This is super easy and works with the click of a button. To get started, you just need to install the Buffer browser extension.

Now, whenever you see a Tweet that’s worth sharing, you can hit the Buffer button:

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This will let you easily schedule a native Retweet from any of your Twitter accounts:

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Plus, you can easily change the Retweet to the old school “RT @username: Text of the tweet” format. If you hover over the composer, you’ll see an option to “change to quote”:

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That’s all it takes! Now you’ll see that Retweet in your Buffer queue, waiting to be published. Of course you can still edit the update to delete, change it to a quote or move it around in your queue:

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6. Keep on Top of Your Brand and Find Great Content with Mention & Buffer

Mention is a great tool to help you keep on top of your brand all over the web. It lets you monitor mentions of your brand specifically, as well as industry keywords, competitors and more. When you sign up for an account, the first thing you’ll want to do is create a new alert. This is as simple as naming your alert and adding any keywords you want to monitor:

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To get the most out of the recent integration of Mention + Buffer, you can now add your Buffer account to your Mention alerts so you can publish results to social networks. You can do this when you create a new alert, as well as adding your Facebook or Twitter accounts:

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If you add your Buffer account, you’ll be able to publish to all of your connected social profiles and pages, just like you can from the Buffer dashboard or browser extensions.

Inside your alert results, you can filter by source including images, blogs, Twitter, Facebook, videos and more. If you choose blogs, you can find some great content to fill up your Buffer account:

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Once you’ve found a post that you want to share, just click on the “React” menu and choose “Add to Buffer”:

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7. Use Followerwonk to Tweet at Optimal Times

Followerwonk is a tool that we love using at Buffer to work out when is the best time for us to tweet.

To get started, head over to Followerwonk and click on “Analyze followers”

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Next, pop your Twitter username into the box and select “analyze their followers” from the drop-down:

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When your report is done, you’ll see a graph that shows when your followers are most active:

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If you use Buffer, you can take advantage of this by creating a Buffer schedule based on your Followerwonk report. Just choose how many times you want to post each day, and hit the “Schedule at Buffer” button.

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8. Transparency

Something we’ve found that’s really helped us to bond with our readers and build up a community around Buffer is to be really open about how we run the company. We share details about Buffer on our Open blog, as well as in interviews and on other sites.

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We share details about our support team and how we handle customer support each month:

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And about our revenue:

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And we’ve even published a deep-dive before on how we manage our content strategy for the Buffer blog:

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9. Set Up Google Authorship

Google Authorship is not just the photo and byline that appears on search results pages, thought that’s a large part of it.

Below is a search results page for the term “Google authorship” showing many entries that have taken advantage of authorship:

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In addition to the byline, there is a strategic layer to Google authorship. The tie-in with Google+ profiles creates verified connections between content on the web and the creators of the content. This gives Google the ability to identify quality, human-created content.

There are several benefits of setting up Google authorship for your content:

1. Your authorship byline will get you noticed.

Look at the below heatmap generated by eye-tracking studies. As you might expect, the top results on the page get a lot of looks, but so too do the results with rich snippets (and not so much for the results in between).

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2. Entries with rich snippets have higher click-through rates.

A study performed by search marketing firm Catalyst found that clicks improved 150% with Google authorship.

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3. Authorship is an advantage to the little guy.

Authorship offers a competitive advantage. A recent study found that only 3.5% of Fortune 500 companies are actively using authorship. Until they do, they are giving a big opportunity to the rest of us.

Authorship may be the future of search.

Don’t take it from me. Take it from Google’s Eric Schmidt. He sees a future where identity plays a big part in search results.

Within search results, information tied to verified online profiles will be ranked higher than content without such verification, which will result in most users naturally clicking on the top (verified) results.

To get started with Google authorship, you can check out this step-by-step guide on the Buffer blog.

That’s it! I hope some of these might be useful for you here. We’ve recently introduced the brand new Buffer for Business too, so in case you’re looking for a powerful social media management tool, take a look, we’d love your feedback on it.

Subscribe to our new Definitivenewsletter: High grade digital marketing guidance, topically sorted, and curated to the max. You pick the categories, we deliver the content. The best content from around the web, on topics you care about and need to be an expert in.

Image credits: Tomasz Tunguz

For more see –

https://www.convinceandconvert.com/content-marketing/9-best-from-buffer/

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

16 Great Blogging Tips from 16 Great Bloggers…

I’ve heard blogging referred to a couple of times recently as a mixture between an art and a science. If this is true (and I think it is), there’s no ‘right way’ to approach blogging if you want to be successful. There are plenty of people who’ve done a great job of it though, and I thought it would be useful to learn from them.

These 16 bloggers shared one important tip each for blogging beginners. No doubt, even if you’re not a beginner these tips will probably prove to be useful.

Create blog posts that answer the most interesting questions from people you engage with on social media.

Dave Larson, founder of @tweetsmarter

This can be a great way to gather ideas of what topics people would most like to read about, which will help your blog grow! One of the best ways I’ve seen this in action is through blog comments or Tweets. In one example, here on FastCompany a lot of people requested a post that features more women entrepreneurs:

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Now, a few weeks later adding such an article where just women contributed and built great businesses was a big hit:

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Understand your audience better than they understand themselves. It takes a lot of upfront research, and often means being a member of the very tribe you’re trying to lead – but it pays off.

Brian Clark, founder and CEO, Copyblogger

Understanding your audience better means you’ll have a better idea of what blog content will resonate with them, which is a good start when you get to writing blog posts.

A great technique for doing this is to simply ask your readers first on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn with an engaging quote. If people respond well to it, than this is probably a great topic to write about. An example for this comes from Andrew Chen who famously “tests” his blogpost ideas on Twitter first.

And so does Joel here at Buffer. Take this example from a recent Twitter post of his, where he simply tweeted one quote to see how well people liked a topic before he blogged about it:

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blogging advice - tweet

 

Write for yourself first & foremost. Ignore the fact that anyone else will read what you write; just focus on your thoughts, ideas, opinions and figure out how to put those into words. Write it and they will come.

Adii Pienaar, founder of PublicBeta

Adii’s experience in writing for himself firstly has made a difference to his blog in ways he didn’t expect:

Yes, since I’ve been writing for myself, I’ve found that I write more and I publish more often. I think though that the main reason for that is that I don’t decide whether to publishing something based on the traction / reception that the post will receive within my audience; instead if I want to publish something, I do so. For myself.

Start building your email list from day one. Even if you don’t plan on selling anything, having an email list allows you to promote your new content to your audience directly without worrying about search rankings, Facebook EdgeRank, or other online roadblocks in communications.

Kristi Hines, freelance writer and professional blogger

When you’re asking readers to sign up for your email list, you might want to try experimenting with different language. Willy Franzen found that his subscription rate jumped 254% higherwhen he changed his call-to-action from “subscribe by email” to “get jobs by email”:

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blogging advice - subscription rate

Using this phrase more clearly tells Willy’s readers what they’re signing up for, which clearly worked well!

 

Love the readers you already have. A lot of bloggers get quite obsessed with finding new readers – to the point that they ignore the ones they already have. Yes – do try to find new readers but spend time each day showing your current readers that you value them too and you’ll find that they will help you grow your blog.

Darren Rowse, founder of ProBlogger

Focusing on your readers is a great way to get to know them better (see tip #2). I love the way Daniel Burstein describesblog readers’ expectations of you as a blogger:

A blog is really two things. One, simply a piece of technology, a platform. But, two, it is a promise in the minds of most readers, who expect that the blog should have actual content with some elements of value that is hyper-targeted to their needs. Much like with a newspaper. Readers don’t just look at a newspaper as newsprint that is delivered on their driveway every morning. They look at it as valuable information about their city, where they live, and the things that they do.

 

I screwed up for years. I’d blog and blog. Some of my posts were doing very well on places like Hacker News, but I had such hard time getting return visitors. And very few people bothered to follow me on Twitter.

Don’t rely on people to do the work to find your Twitter account. Don’t rely on them to do the work to find your details in a sidebar. People are blind to sidebars. Thanks banner ads!

Finish your blog post with some kind of call to action to signup for an email list or follow you on Twitter. When I started doing this, I immediately increased my Twitter followers by 335% in the first 7 days.

Nate Kontny, founder of Draft

Nate uses a simple call-to-action on his blog now, that looks like this:

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This particular technique we’ve also tested here on the Buffer blog and found it to work amazingly well to bring attention to other blog posts we’ve written, like this:

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or to Buffer product features, like this:

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7. Give stuff away

Give away free content that adds value to people’s lives “until it hurts” and they will love you and become loyal fans.

Jeff Bullas, blogger and author of Blogging the Smart Way

A great example of this is the research done by Incentivibe, who found that adding a giveaway contest pop-up to the bottom-right of their website led to 125% more email subscribers.

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Consistency is one of the most important things that bloggers tend to forget. It’s much easier to lose your traffic than it is to build it up, so make sure you consistently blog.

Neil Patel, founder of KISSmetrics

A study by Hubspot showed that consistent blogging actually leads to higher subscriber growth rates:

Over a two-month span, businesses that published blog entries on a regular basis (more than once a week) added subscribers over twice as fast as those companies that added content once a month.

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blogging advice - subscriber growth

 

Don’t be afraid to showcase what you know. Too many bloggers hold back the good stuff out of fear of giving away the “secret sauce.” There is no secret sauce in a world where everyone has high speed Internet access at all times. Today, you want to give away information snacks to sell knowledge meals.

Jay Baer, author of Youtility

Jay’s advice is to share the knowledge you have, rather than keeping it tucked away for a rainy day. Chris Guillebeau follows this advice by offering two free, downloadable PDFs to his readers. Chris also does what Jay calls giving away “information snacks to sell knowledge meals.” On both of the free PDF download pages, Chris markets his book on the right-hand side.

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Stay true to yourself and your voice. People don’t care to follow sites so much as they care to follow people.

Chris Pirillo, founder and CEO, LockerGnome

Another blogger who advocates the importance of the writer’s voice is Jeff Goins. He says that your voice is the most important, yet over-looked part of blogging:

Writing isn’t about picking the right topic; it’s about finding the right voice. What matters, what readers really resonate with, isn’t so much what you say, but how.

Plan to invest in blogging for a long time before you see a return. The web is a big, noisy place and unless you’re willing to invest more over a greater period of time than others, you’ll find success nearly impossible. If you’re seeking short-term ROI, or a quick path to recognition, blogging is the wrong path. But if you can stick it out for years without results and constantly learn, iterate, and improve, you can achieve something remarkable.

Rand Fishkin, CEO of Moz

Rand shared these great images with us from his wife’s travel blog, Everywhereist, which shows just how long it can take to see a return on your efforts:

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If you’re blogging to create a business, a movement, or to support a cause, then you need to build an email list. It’s not an option. I don’t even consider my blog to be my community, my email list is my community. Caring about these people, writing for them, and delivering value to them should be your number one goal.

James Clear, entrepreneur, weightlifter and travel photographer

When the New York Public Libraryfocused on growing email subscription rates, this simple home page design with information about what readers could expect to receive boosted numbers by 52.8% over a more complicated version with less information about the actual newsletter:

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blogging advice - nypl

 

No matter how great your content is, it won’t matter unless you have an amazing headline. People have a split second to decide if they should click on your post, and your headline will make them decide. The headline is also essential in making it easy and desirable for people to share your post. Keep your headlines SPUB: simple, powerful, useful and bold.

Dave Kerpen, author and CEO of Likeable Local

Something we do at Buffer is to test several different headlines for each of our blog posts to determine which ones works best. Here’s an example of what that might look like:

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blogging advice - headlines

You can read more about this particular approach in more depth here: A scientific guide to writing great headlines on Twitter, Facebook and your Blog

 

There isn’t one specific set of rules to be successful in blogging. When I started blogging, I had the opportunity to learn from experienced and successful bloggers in the industry. One of the best lessons I’ve learned from them is to simply be me. I didn’t have to be too “professional” or use “big words” to impress others. I had to simply be me.

By being me, I enjoyed writing and the process more. It had me writing more than I usually would too. If you look at the the most successful writers like Seth Godin and Chris Brogan you’ll notice that they are different and unique in their own ways.

Aaron Lee, social media manager, entrepreneur and blogger

Moz CEO Rand Fishkin agrees that telling your company’s story is important, as opposed to following a formula for successful blogging:

Emotion and storytelling have been part of how we communicate with each other and inspire action for thousands of years.

 

Biggest lesson I learned in my past year of blogging. Keep it in the 1–2 minutes read-time length.

Derek Sivers, founder of Wood Egg

Working out the best length for your blog posts can be tricky. You generally need about 300 words minimum to get indexed by search engines, but otherwise the length of your post is up to what you think feels best.

Derek Sivers noticed recently that his shorter posts were much better received by readers and seemed to be shared more, unlike his longer posts:

When I’ve written articles that were too long or had too many ideas, they didn’t get much of a reaction.

When I read books, I often feel bad for the brilliant idea buried on page 217. Who will hear it?

Stop the orchestra. Solo that motif. Repeat it. Let the other instruments build upon it.

The web is such a great way to do this.

Present a single idea, one at a time, and let others build upon it.

According to this Chartbeat graph below, many visitors to your site won’t bother scrolling, and most visitors won’t read more than about 60% of what you’ve written. Keeping it short and sharp then, could be worthwhile.

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blogging advice - chartbeat graph

If you’re looking for a general guide to blog post length, Joe Pulizzi’s blog post, “A blog post is like a miniskirt” might be useful:

A blog post is like a miniskirt.

It has to be short enough to be interesting, but long enough to cover the subject.

 

One thing I always try to keep in mind before publishing a post is would anyone want to “cite” this for any reason? Just like interesting research is great because it leaves you with a fascinating finding or an idea, I like for my posts to be the same. That doesn’t mean relying on research, but simply making sure each post has an original lesson or actionable item, making it “citable” on the web.

Gregory Ciotti, marketing strategist at Help Scout

Our very own Buffer co-founder Leo has written about a similar thing before:

When writing a post, I get into a mindset to answer just this 1 question with a Yes: “Would anyone email this article to a friend?”

It’s an extremely simple proposition. Yet, it has changed my writing completely. If I put myself into a reader’s head going through a post and seeing whether someone will say “Oh, this is interesting, John will really like this”, then I go ahead and publish it. It’s almost like an invisible threshold to pass. I need to improve the post until this level is reached. I will iterate, find more research, get more examples, until I can truly imagine this happening.

I’m sure there are lots more great tips out there about building a blog. What’s your favorite?

Image credits: David G. Larson, Copyblogger, The WordPress Podcast, Party Biz Connect, Darren Rowse, Nate Kontny, Jeff Bullas, FounderTips, Social Media Examiner, Chris Pirillo, LinkJuice, James Clear, Dave Kerpen, Joshua Titsworth, Derek Sivers, Unbounce

For more see:

https://buffer.com/resources/blogging-advice-for-beginners-from-16-experts/amp

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

13 Newsletters You’ll Want in Your Inbox in 2020

Imagine this: You open your inbox, and there sit a dozen new articles that you’d be thrilled to share to social media. Simple as that!

Welcome to the world of email newsletters, where experts from a wide spectrum of topics are finding and sharing the best content they discover—perfect for you to read, to buffer, and to share with your social media audience.

There are a ton of great newsletters to choose from … almost too many. Every so often, I spend time decluttering and re-establishing what content I should be subscribing to, reading, and using as a resource for links to build out my social media calendar – both personal and professional.

Having seen a ton of great newsletters pass my way, I’d love to share a short list of the best newsletters out there (many of which have become personal favorites).

Check out the list below. And hope you find some great new content!

For even more great content to share …

Newsletters are one of the many places to find inspiration for adding fresh content to social media. Here are a couple of other resources from the Buffer blog to give you even more ideas:

  1. 25 Places to Find Incredible Content to Share 
  2. 17 Unique Places to Find Great Content

13 of the Best Newsletters in 2020

1. Robinhood Snacks

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I read the Robinhood Snacks newsletter daily, no matter what. While this list is in no particular order, this one is intentionally first. It’s likely the newsletter that got me hooked on newsletters in the first place.

Their content helps me stay constantly on top of financial business news in a non-boring, non-dry, and super simple way. I’ve always struggled with staying afloat of financial news because of the language, but Robinhood’s easy explanations and punny flavor of writing makes it not only comprehensible, but enjoyable.

2. Morning Brew

The Morning Brew collects interesting stories in business in general (not just financially-focused). It’s also a great source of links across different topics to use for social media publishing.

3. Below the Fold

Now while most newsletters help you understand the major headlines of the day, Below the Fold serves a different purpose. The content is what you would have found if you still had a physical newspaper and were flipping to page two, covering important stories not making headlines and, as a result, easy to miss.

Bias alert! My amazing team at Acciyo puts this weekly newsletter together, but we work hard to dig up stories you’re not hearing anywhere else but still impact your world.

4. Buffer’s social media newsletter

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Yes, this is the newsletter for the very blog you’re reading right now. The weekly newsletter is short and sweet — full of all the latest social media news from Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, and more, plus the newest tools and trends.

5. Vox Sentences

While Vox has an extensive offering of newsletters, Vox Sentences takes the cake as my favorite. With all the lengthy newsletters already in existence, Vox Sentences is a daily that truly puts the “brief” in “news briefing.” They excel at covering major new stories into concise bullet points.

6. NextDraft

For a different flavor of content in your mix, turn to NextDraft, a carefully curated list of the ten most interesting things within “that swirling nightmare of information quicksand” we call the internet. Brought to you by Dave Pell, a life-long news junkie with an affinity for great puns, this daily newsletter is loved by many — including Rainn Wilson from The Office!

7. NPR’s Pop-Culture Happy Hour

Continuing on the different flavors path … NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour is an absolutely delightful newsletter that offers insightful opinions about the latest hit TV show or movie. The tone is fun, casual, but still very mature/insightful. Want to impress your co-workers with thoughtful analysis about Succession? PCHH is the perfect source!

8. Non-Obvious Insights

Non-Obvious Insights follows the same theme as Below the Fold, mentioned above, but specifically for marketing content. The newsletter highlights articles within the marketing world that have not been widely covered, all in a clean and simple design without leaving you overwhelmed with text.

9. NPR’s Life Kit

Another treat from NPR, Life Kit is a periodical newsletter that covers a wide range of topics including personal finance, health, parenting, education, journalism, and art. Chances are, Life Kit has covered a topic that’s relevant for your social media content.

10. NYTimes Morning Briefing

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One of their many valuable content efforts, The New York Times’ Morning Briefing is efficiently summarizes the top news stories of the day and offers a long list of feature stories that are worth a 20-minute read. A great place to look when you have that extra time and want to dig deeper.

11. Moz Top Ten

We all know and love Moz’s content, but their Top Ten newsletter specifically delivers fascinating insights about the latest news in SEO and digital marketing as a whole. Their approach is unique in that they send a semimonthly email with 10 articles that go deep in information you don’t have the time to hunt down yourself.

12. The Professional Freelancer

As marketers, we’re either hiring freelancers or sometimes freelancers ourselves — whether full time or as a side hustle to our day job. The Freelance Feels newsletter offers practical advice for how to succeed as a freelancer writer without succumbing to stress and anxiety. It’s delivered weekly on Friday.

13. The Daily Pitch

Working in tech, I love to know how the tides are changing. Whether it’s movement on investing in female founders, which companies are IPO-ing, or any other insights on the ever changing world of VC, PE, and M&A … The Daily Pitch from Pitchbook makes it easy to stay constantly informed. It’s fun to see the drama that emerges from time to time, too.


Which newsletters are your favorites?

I hope I’ve hit on a few of your favorites in the list here, as well as given you some good ideas on possible new ones to grab!

Which newsletters do you subscribe to? Which are your favorites? Which ones have you found to be most helpful with finding content to read and share?

I’d love to hear all about it in the comments!

Image sources: IconFinder, Blurgrounds, Unsplash

This article was originally published in February 2015. We refreshed it and updated it in January 2020.

https://buffer.com/resources/best-newsletters

5 Questions With Marcus Foley, Co-Founder, Tommy

Our industry is at a critical point during which potential readers and consumers are more guarded with their attention than ever before. Content is consumed at the pace of technology and, in turn, more brands are converging into narrowing spaces and facing competition from a myriad of companies both within and outside of their sectors.

As a result, we as marketers must rethink how we cater to a generation that has developed a reflex for opting out of and scrolling away from content that doesn’t match their values and interests.

View the full #SMWLDN agenda

On Friday, 1 November, during #SMWLDN, join Tommy Co-Founder, Marcus Foley, for a discussion that will address this topic exploring five practical strategies for ensuring your work is seen and not ignored and insights for reframing our strategies to catering to audiences of content experts.

Ahead of his session, we sat down with Marcus to get his perspective on the key difference between disrupting and earning attention, what brands he’s observed that are successful in their engagement tactics, the evolution of content marketing over the last few years, and more.

SMW: In the context of the ‘attention economy,’ what are a few standout examples of brands who are doing a good job in earning attention? What are their key tactics?

MF: First up, in the highly-competitive fashion category, for me, Pretty Little Thing are head-and-shoulders above their peers. Their goal is to make every woman feel like they’re ready to take on the world and they certainly celebrate everybody. It oozes effortlessly through everything they do on their social channels.

The way they celebrate body diversity is beautiful, their approach to building endorsements through influencers and peers is carefully considered, the way they speak their brand truth is ever-present and their commitment to constantly giving back to their community is clear to see; consistently identifying opportunities to engage and stand for so much more than just selling their products. Add to that punchy copywriting, a distinct digital brand world this is craft at its best.

Often one of my go-to’s is Nike Running. I simply love their Instagram channel and often benchmark their content. From click-bait carousels that make you want to explore more, vertical formats that move beyond the AV edit, by transforming a linear piece of content to tell a story in a unique and interesting way, or serving a piece of content that grabs your attention for all the right reasons. For example, disrupting your feed at that one moment you’re doing anything but going for that run “You’re all caught up. You can now put your phone down and go run”. Nike knows how to consistently earn your attention.

For me they are living proof if you’re willing to invest in content marketing, you can leave your competition behind. By being playful, mischievous and contextual at their core, they are winning through in the attention economy.

In your perspective, what is the difference between earning attention and disrupting? How should we, as marketers, reframe our thinking around earning attention?

Firstly, in the context of creating content for social media, disrupting is a tactic to grab someone’s attention. Think impact followed by the narrative. It should be a single-minded obsession with how you disrupt their feed and stop them from scrolling past you.

We consider how to seduce the viewer into examining the work and there are a number of tactics you can deploy; from mimicking the scroll, hacking the UI, subverting the familiar in an interesting way or simply creating a piece of content that is visually stunning. Whichever tactic we deploy, we never lose sight of our moment of impact and are always brutally honest when we ask ourselves “does this stop us mid-scroll, does it deserve our attention”. If the answers is no, then push back, start again.

Secondly, earning attention is about figuring out how to get people to keep paying attention to you because once you earned the right, audiences will give you more of their time. Once you’ve unlocked their attention you must hold that attention and use that attention effectively. This is the fundamental challenge we have to address as marketeers. Ask yourself what are you bringing to the party, do I deserve to turn up in their feed, do I deserve a few moments of their time and am I consistently earning the right for the audience to keep paying attention to me?

We need to be honest about the capacity for human attention, figure out how to get people to keep paying attention. If content lacks variety, intelligence, and inventiveness we will zone out.

How has content marketing evolved over the past several years? What are the core qualities that set effective content marketing apart from the noise?

We are now marketing to a generation of content experts who are so much more in control of what they take in. We are converging into narrowing spaces, facing competition from a myriad of brands and over the last seven years we have all caught up with our content marketing. As we head into 2020, we need to sharpen up our content strategies and start asking different questions.

If you start with ’they just don’t care about you’ then ask ‘do we deserve your attention’, then you’re setting off on the right path. The answer is not always comfortable, but as output has become predictable and the repetitiveness has killed the ability for your content to command attention, then we need to bring a brutal honesty into our content marketing efforts and start asking these questions.

Over the years our agency has constantly evolved to embrace the trends in digital and exploit the creative potential of each new era. Now our model focuses purely on earning your attention. No matter where you are across the content eco-system, we just focus on the most scarce resource of all, time. How we get some and then ask ourselves honesty “do we deserve some of it”.

And those core qualities that are cutting through and earning attention; brands who don’t let their competition dictate what they do, who offer variety, intelligence, are inventive, playful, contextual to the core and are clearly committed to investing in their content.

In what ways is capturing attention within the entertainment industry different from other industries? Is there a distinction between securing long-time engagement that is sustained versus a more short-term, immediate strategy to capture eyes and ears?

Marketing entertainment has always presented a set of unique challenges. Whether you’re building a global audience from scratch, re-engaging fans in a franchise or driving membership subscription, you need to understand audiences around the world and how to entertain them. Certainly, the art of grabbing attention has been the one ever-present over the years, be that for short-term activation or a more meaningful long-standing hit.

Our campaigns have always had innovation at the heart, with a relentless pursuit to find new and fascinating ways to surprise an audience and grab their attention. Whether that is leveraging start power in a unique way or ensuring your first to market with a new format on a social channel, being agile has allowed us to seize the moment.

Those strategies based on grabbing attention and building fame are relevant more than ever, no matter what category you are marketing to.

Aside from campaigns, purpose, sustainability, etc., what innovative ways have you seen brands earn attention from their audiences?

I always love content that taps into the human instinct to play. The sooner you let an audience take control of the content, the longer they will stay and play. The content becomes a reward in itself. I am certainly seeing lots of great examples with formats like IG stories that play into this principal. More importantly, from a neuroscience perspective, it creates a more memorable experience and a positive association with your brand. I will certainly be covering some of this off during my talk at Social Media Week London.

Don’t miss your chance to explore the power of content marketing with Marcus during #SMWLDN (31 Oct – 1 Nov). Claim your pass online today to get a discount off the walk-up price.

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The post 5 Questions With Marcus Foley, Co-Founder, Tommy appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/10/5-questions-with-marcus-foley-co-founder-tommy/

26 Mobile and Desktop Tools for Marketers : Social Media Examiner

26 Mobile and Desktop Tools for Marketers : Social Media Examiner

https://matrainingwales.wordpress.com/2019/04/22/26-mobile-and-desktop-tools-for-marketers-social-media-examiner/
— Read on matrainingwales.wordpress.com/2019/04/22/26-mobile-and-desktop-tools-for-marketers-social-media-examiner/

https://mikearmstrongnews.wordpress.com/2019/04/24/26-mobile-and-desktop-tools-for-marketers-social-media-examiner/

6 Best Practices For Creating Great Content

Over the years the phrase ‘content is king’ has been thrown about to inspire marketing teams to create more and more amazing material for audiences, resulting in a huge increase in articles and content creators on the web.

With more people venturing online, more social media users and the rise of the blogger and “influencer” the competition for creating amazing, unique articles, imagery and marketing campaigns is high.

To keep you on your A game for creating content, we’ll take you through the best practices that will transform your content to dull and boring so you can stand out from the crowd and create truly great content.

1. Think of The Audience

This is the single most important point you need to take away with you. Your audience is the sole reason you are creating content in the first place and so they are your priority when it comes to copywriting.

Whatever it is you’re writing about and the reason behind it, the fundamental reason is to satisfy them, may that be through answering a question, entertaining them, encouraging them to buy a product and fulfill their needs or similar.

As a result, you must always think and refer back to what it is they want, why you’re creating the content and make sure every piece of information within the article relates to this and fits this purpose.

2. Write For Long Tail Keywords

A common flaw that copywriters fall into is writing content for short, highly competitive keywords. For example, say you were a rare vinyl seller looking to create bespoke articles on how best to clean and care for vinyl.

Although ‘clean vinyl records’ has 1,000 average monthly searches, ‘how to clean vinyl records with soap and water’ has 40 average monthly searches which hence has a lot less competition and a bigger chance for you to rank well for this keyword.

If you can create a piece that is optimized for this keyword, once you’ve secured a high search ranking, you can start to create more pieces of content, may these be videos, social media imagery or so on, that target ‘clean vinyl records’ specifically.

This way, because you’ve already gained a high authority and relevance ranking on search engines for the long tail keyword, you’re chances of ranking for the shorter, more competitive keyword is more achievable.

3. Complete Your Keyword Research On Multiple Tools

Just because Google Ads Keyword Planner shows that ‘clean vinyl records’ has the highest searches, doesn’t mean you should settle for this information. Explore the web – that’s what it’s there for. Use other tools like BuzzSumo to get title ideas, complete social media searches and see what hashtags are trending.

Take a leaf from a scientist’s book. They must do lots of research, consult multiple sources of different types may that be a book, the internet, physical experiments and so on, to get a proper understanding of what it is they’re focusing on.

Sources often contradict themselves and offer varying opinions so it’s good to see what other people and tools are saying about the keyword or topic you want to talk about. Finding your next golden nugget of wisdom is often in the places you don’t commonly visit, so research about.

4. Know Your Text Structure Before Writing

Having a strong idea of the format of your post is essential before you start writing. Good structure means your blog post will be SEO optimized, highly readable for your desired audience and so, will make it a quick read. Something that’s becoming increasingly important in the online world.

It’s known from research that typically, users read the title, first paragraph, headings, subheadings and the first sentences of paragraphs. This is how people learn what your text is about and urges them to continue reading. Take this information on board and run with it.

How To Set Up Your Blog Structure

To set up your structure, you first need to follow the below steps to create the skeleton of your article.

Step 1 – Know the main question you’re answering i.e. what it is your audience is asking or wants to know.

Step 2 – Know the message you are trying to convey in your blog post i.e. what your answer to the question is and include this in your first paragraph.

Step 3 – Create a list of things you will cover in the article i.e solutions you’re offering, tips for doing something and so on.

Step 4 – Bundle these ideas together with headings and subheadings.

Step 5 – Finally order these topics either thematically, chronologically or step-by-step problem-solving.

  • Thematic ordering will be based on different subjects at a time, perhaps colour then size, then style.
  • Chronological ordering will be in time order that an event has happened or how to do something.
  • Problem-solving will be stating the problem then offering a new solution with each new heading and paragraph.

Best Practices for Creating Great Content | Kanuka Digital

You can see in the above image that there is a clear structure with the paragraphs clearly answering the questions within the subheadings, making it extremely easy to read and digest even at first glance. This post has been ordered in a thematic style.

5. Start Writing Where You Feel Most Comfortable

Start where you feel most comfortable. Sometimes people can stress over getting the first part of the post written. Don’t. The first paragraph is usually the hardest. It’s got to be the most intriguing, of high quality and optimized for SEO purposes.

Perhaps there is a certain point in the post you’d prefer to write about or have more information on. Start there and you’ll then get into your own flow of writing the next paragraphs.

Don’t fear that jumping from paragraph two to paragraph four will disrupt your flow and make your post sound “jumpy”. You can easily enhance your sentences in the correction phase of your post if it doesn’t flow exactly how you’d like.

Tip: Yoast suggest blog content writing is made up of three parts. Preparation which amounts to 40%, writing which amounts to 20% and correction which amounts to the final 40%.

6. Avoid Referring Back To Previous Paragraphs In First Sentence

So, as we know people read the first sentence of your paragraphs first, it’s important to never start a new paragraph with “this means that…” Your audience would have to read the previous sentence or two to get a proper idea of what you’re discussing which can interrupt their flow, damaging the posts’ readability and usability.

Instead, each new paragraph should be easily readable without having to fully understand and read the previous. Of course, you’ll want to continue the flow of conversation as you create a new paragraph though it should be expanded slightly or merge onto a new topic, time or place.

No one enjoys reading massive chunks of text so it’s simple. Split them up when it’s relevant to, without making them hard to read if the first chunk of text isn’t present.

Summary

When it comes to creating content, if your post is useful to your readers, it’ll be useful for Google and will usually be SEO friendly too. By focusing on your audience, prioritizing its readability over SEO – though not to neglect it completely – you’ll find over time, the post’s bounce rate will decrease and your search rankings will improve.

For more handy tips to improve your digital marketing practices, check out the Kanuka Digital blog.

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The post 6 Best Practices For Creating Great Content appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2018/10/6-best-practices-for-creating-great-content/

How Ahrefs and Buffer Drive 300K+ Sessions Per Month with Evergreen Content and Social Media

  • Learn how we drive the growth of our blog here at Buffer using free, organic traffic strategies.
  • Understand how to amplify blog content by reverse engineering social media videos that your audience will love.
  • See how we generated more than 30,000 clicks to to our content using paid acquisition channels, and how we optimize ads to lower CPC while simultaneously increasing CTR.

Building your website traffic in 2018 is no easy task.

Today, businesses are faced with an ever-increasing amount of online content as well as ongoing changes from search engines such as Google, and constant algorithm updates from platforms like Facebook.

But, if you’re in a competitive industry that is dominated by established sites, all is not lost.

You can still get tons of website traffic with a resourceful content marketing strategy that revolves around producing quality, evergreen pieces of content.

We recently teamed up with Tim Soulo, head of marketing and product strategy at Ahrefs, to discuss what the most successful businesses are doing to generate quality website traffic in 2018.

Prefer video? Check out our webinar below:

Generating quality website traffic

Did you know that more than 90 percent of website pages generate no organic search traffic from Google? In fact, if you look closely, less than 1 percent of website pages drive the majority of organic traffic online:

Ahrefs Web Traffic

That’s why it’s critical to have a content strategy in place that incorporates well-researched, evergreen topics that will drive long-term traffic to your website.

The Buffer blog, for example, gets about 1.3 million visits every month, and more than 80 percent of our website traffic comes from people searching for social media marketing topics on Google and finding our blog posts. This 80 percent is also known as organic traffic and is the most scalable and reliable traffic source for most websites.

We achieved this with having only two content writers for most of the past seven years. If we can do it, you can, too!

Here’s how we approach traffic growth:

Write about evergreen topics and promote them regularly

This first chart shows the traffic of most blog posts written nowadays. The blog post gets a nice spike of traffic from social media and email on the day of publishing. But the traffic fades away over time because the blog post doesn’t rank well on Google and isn’t being promoted on marketing channels anymore.

Spike of traffic example

Now, compare that chart with this second one:

Sustainable traffic example

This blog post also had a nice spike of traffic on the day of publishing. But the traffic didn’t drop over time. In fact, it continues to grow and grow. After three years, this blog post has been viewed more than two million times.

There are several ways to generate evergreen content ideas, but Soulo recommends two proven tactics to consistently increase your success rate.

1. Find popular search terms

Using a tool like the Ahrefs Keyword Explorer, you can search for a single word or phrase related to your product or service:

Ahrefs Keyword Search Tool - Website Traffic

Not only will you be able to view the search volume around the term entered, you’ll also be able to view all related keywords and search volume – providing you with even more content ideas.

2. Research your peers and competitors

Another way to generate keyword and content ideas is by research your peers and competitors.

We particularly like this strategy because it helps to provide even deeper insights into the exact pages other businesses in your industry are ranking for. In other words, you can discover exactly what problems and challenges potential customers are trying to solve.

Ahrefs Site Explorer provides you with an in-depth look at the organic search traffic and backlink profile of any website or URL:

Ahrefs Site Explorer - Website Traffic

Of course, you should never rely on organic search volume alone to help generate evergreen content ideas for your website or blog, but performing the two steps above is one of the best places to start when planning your content for the month, quarter, or year.

“It’s all about studying. Studying what people search for in terms of the topic that you are targeting. If there are a lot of searches, you might want to create an article that would cover most of them. If there aren’t a ton of searches around a particular topic, then there isn’t much opportunity to have your page rank for several keywords and bring you a healthy amount of search traffic.”

Tim Soulo Ahrefs
Tim Soulo (@timsoulo)
Head of Marketing, Ahrefs

Besides choosing the right topics to write (through keyword research) and promoting the blog posts regularly (which you’ll learn more below), we also consistently update our blog posts.

Updating and relaunching your blog posts

Another thing we do is to regularly update our old blog posts to ensure that they are still relevant and useful to our readers.

In the social media space, many things, such as social media image sizes, can change frequently. Many of the blog posts that we write would no longer be helpful to our readers if the information is outdated.

Updating your old blog posts not only keeps your content relevant to your readers but it can also help you rank better on Google and get more sustainable traffic. For example, when we updated our social media analytics tools blog post last year, the number of daily page views more than doubled!

Updating old blog post example

Here’s what we did with that blog post:

  1. Update the content: We added new tools, moved dysfunctional tools, and updated screenshots.
  2. Fine-tune the writing: We re-wrote certain parts to make them read better, added a section on what’s social media analytics, and added anchor tags to make navigation easier.
  3. Relaunch the blog post: Then we updated the published date within WordPress and promoted the blog post on social media and via our email list.

“A good way to look at generating sustainable traffic (or organic traffic) is to think of it as creating helpful and relevant content for your target audience. What topics are your audience always searching for? Write a blog post to help answer their questions. Are your blog posts becoming outdated? Update the content so that your audience will still find it useful.

We have a blog post that goes into more details about how we grew our readership to over a million visits per month. If you are interested in learning more about the intricacies of SEO and generating organic traffic, I would recommend following Ahref’s blog and Moz’s Whiteboard Friday.”

Alfred from Buffer
Alfred Lua (@alfred_lua)
Growth Editor, Buffer

But even with the most quality content in the world, potential customers won’t visit your website unless they know the content is there.

That’s where social media, particularly video and advertising, can help boost the results of your evergreen content strategy above.

Here’s how.

Amplifying content success with social media video

Video is one of the most compelling ways to reach your audience because video is the preferred way people consume information in 2018 and will be for the foreseeable future.

Here is a simple formula for amplifying the success of your content and boosting website traffic.

1. Create video topics from what works

Video is not a whole new type of marketing  – video is a way to amplify your existing marketing strategy.

Start by sorting your most visited blog posts or pages from the previous 90 days in Google Analytics. To access this information, head to Google Analytics > Behavior > Site Content > All Pages:

Google Analytics Data - Buffer

Sorting by Pageviews gives you a precise look at what people are most interested in learning about from your business. It’s a good indication of what sorts of content will make for an engaging video topic.

Next, we create a list of possible video topic ideas based on our most popular website content in Excel:

Video Topic Tracking Spreadsheet

Feel free to “make a copy” of the above Excel spreadsheet template for your own use!

This strategy has helped us create well-liked videos such as this and this on social media as well as drive additional website traffic (traffic we would not have gotten without video content).

2. Create video topics from scratch

If you don’t have a ton of existing content to amplify, that’s alright! You can still drive traffic to your website by creating compelling video content ideas from scratch.

There are lots of great (free and paid) tools available that will help you to uncover popular topics. Here are two of our favorites:

  • BuzzSumo

You can use BuzzSumo to find the most shared content from any URL – instantly allowing you to determine what content has worked for your peers and competitors. You can also find the most shared content for any topic.

For example, let’s say we were interested in driving website traffic based on the topic of social media marketing. We’d simply enter that search term into BuzzSumo and the results would look something like this:

BuzzSumo Search Tool

Discovering relevant topics using search terms and website URLs are my favorite way to use BuzzSumo.

  • Ahrefs Keyword Explorer

Another great way to generate a list of video ideas to drive quality traffic to your website is with a keyword tool such as Ahref Keywords Explorer.

Keywords explorer can allows you to identify thousands of keyword and topic possibilities in a matter of seconds (and which topics are most popular based on search volume!)

For example, let’s say you’re interested in driving website traffic focused on healthy juices. Simply enter your search term into Keywords Explorer and Ahrefs does all of the work:

Ahrefs Keyword Tool

The best part is that the tool provides “alternatives” for your selected keyword and related topics that might be useful for your business.

Other great tools for generating engaging video topics:

3. Create videos to promote your content

Once you have a list of video topics, it’s time to create the content. There are plethora of great marketing tools to help you create video content, but to help dwindle it down, here are a few of our favorites:

Video Tools

At Buffer, we regularly use Animoto  to create short, engaging blog post summaries that we can share across social media to drive website traffic back to Buffer.

There are tons of best-practices that help to make videos on social media engaging, but quite possibly the most important factor is video length. Keep in mind that people are often browsing social media from their mobile phone and so quick, compelling videos will perform best.

Optimal Video Timing

For a complete guide on creating engaging short videos for social media, check out our in-depth blog post where we cover everything you need to know.

Amplifying website traffic with social media ads

Social media advertising has been an effective way for us at Buffer to boost website traffic around top performing blog posts, strategic marketing initiatives, landing pages, and even our podcast.

When comparing Facebook and Instagram advertising to other options such a PPC, we realized that we could generate hundreds of thousands of visits at a fraction of the cost (often less than $0.10 per click).

Buffer Advertising Stats

The best part is that it’s extremely easy to get started. Here’s our simple approach to social media advertising.

Boost your top-performing content

A straightforward way to drive traffic to your website with advertising is to boost your top performing content on Facebook and Instagram. Here’s how:

  1. Start by posting your content organically to Facebook and Instagram
  2. Check your analytics to see which posts have a high engagement rate (engagement / reach * 100)
  3. Use Facebook Ads Manager to create a custom audience that is likely to interact with your content
  4. Create a custom “Traffic” campaign in Ads Manager or use the “Boost” button to promote your top posts
  5. Generate social proof by regularly responding to comments and interacting with your audience

For example, we posted an article to Facebook about “how to grow your Instagram account” and it immediately received higher-than-normal organic interaction.

In order to promote the post, we created a new traffic campaign and ad set, targeting folks interested in topics such as social media marketing, social media manager, and Social Media Examiner.

Audience Targeting Facebook

We then set a daily budget of $20 and promoted the post. Here’s what it looks like:

Instagram Growth Facebook Ad

To date, this ad has generated more than 125,000 visits to the Buffer Blog for right around $0.06 per click, which has led to thousands of trials and hundreds of customers.

Create social media advertising content from scratch

Naturally, there will be times when you’ll want to promote content, initiatives, and projects that aren’t necessarily classified as top-performers.

We wanted to increase the number of downloads to the Buffer Podcast, for example, and looked to social media advertising as a means to do so. Today, we’ve generated more than 30,000 clicks to the Buffer podcast on iTunes, resulting in a 65 percent increase in downloads in less than six months.

Buffer Podcast Ads to Generate Website Traffic

Here’s how we did it:

  • We set up a Custom Audience targeting all traffic to the Buffer Blog and buffer.com knowing that brand awareness would increase our CTR and decrease our CPC.
  • Next we added an additional targeting filter to only deliver ads to iPhone, iPad, and other iOS devices and linked directly to the episode on iTunes (rather than the show notes or podcast landing page). This reduced the friction of going from podcast ad >> podcast subscriber.
  • We chose the most popular episodes from the podcast and started there — $10 per day using the “Post Traffic” campaign option in Facebook. We keep a close eye on CPC and whenever it creeps above $0.25–0.30 we shut it off and start a new ad.

“Social media advertising has been an effective way for us at Buffer to boost website traffic around top performing blog posts, strategic marketing initiatives, landing pages, and even our podcast. In the past year alone, we’ve used Facebook and Instagram advertising to generate more than 100,000 unique targeted visits to our website for less than $0.25 per click, which has resulted in thousands of leads and hundreds of new customers. Plus, it has had a huge impact on brand awareness and word-of-mouth marketing.”.

Brian Peters (@brian_g_peters)
Digital Marketing, Buffer

Social media advertising best-practices:

  • Test images, captions, and headlines until you find the right combination
  • Look for a relevancy score of 8-10 on brand awareness type content
  • Increase budget with successful posts (immediately shut down others)
  • Keep an eye on frequency rate (try not to exceed 2.0)
  • Evergreen content can run as long as you want!

If you’re just getting started with social media advertising or you’re looking to build upon what you already know, we have a brand new Skillshare class all about advertising (we’re happy to offer you a free month of Skillshare Premium)

Over to you

We hope you enjoyed our webinar with Ahrefs and all of the content included in this post!

We’d love to hear from you as well.

What tactics and strategies have worked for your business to generate lots of quality website traffic? Feel free to drop a comment below!

Learn more about how Ahrefs can help your business here or check out more of Tim Soulo’s work here.

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4 Instagram Features That’ll Get You More (Real) Followers

4 Instagram Features That’ll Get You More (Real) Followers

https://socialmediaexplorer.com/content-sections/news-and-noise/4-instagram-features-thatll-get-you-more-real-followers/
— Read on socialmediaexplorer.com/content-sections/news-and-noise/4-instagram-features-thatll-get-you-more-real-followers/

£51 Million Boost to Wales’ Hi-Tech Electronics Industry

£51 Million Boost to Wales’ Hi-Tech Electronics Industry

£51 Million Boost to Wales’ Hi-Tech Electronics Industry
— Read on welshbizuk.wordpress.com/2018/08/18/51-million-boost-to-wales-hi-tech-electronics-industry-4/


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What Adobe’s Latest Acquisition Says About the Future of Marketing

Marketers love sharing “content” as part of campaigns, especially the free sort, like social media commentary or videos created by happy customers. That obsession inspired marketing software company Adobe’s Tuesday buyout of Livefyre, a startup that names dozens of large consumer products companies like Coca-Cola, Hallmark, Kimberly-Clark, and Warner Music Group, as its customers. Terms…

http://fortune.com/2016/05/03/adobe-livefyre-acquisition/

Twitter Marketing Tip 7

Step up your social media game with this Twitter marketing tip to get you standing out from the competition:

Share Content More Than Once 

Not everyone can be on Twitter at all times, and most people won’t make a point of visiting your profile in case they missed something, so don’t feel shy about sharing your content multiple times.

On average, your second post of a piece of content will receive 86% as much engagement as the first time you Tweeted it. 

An added bonus of this is that you can experiment with different text or images when sharing the content and compare performance to help with your Tweeting strategy going forward. 

For example, Tweets with URLs in the middle are 26% more likely to get retweeted than Tweets with URLs at the end. If this isn’t something you’ve tried on a previous Tweet, give it a go now. 

If you like this Twitter Marketing Tip you might also like these Twitter Marketing Tips:

This Twitter Marketing Tip 7 page was posted “By Mike Armstrong”

Content Marketing Altering the Future Predicted in ‘Minority Report’

New post on Online Marketing Hub

Content Marketing Altering the Future Predicted in ‘Minority Report’
by christopherjanb
marketing-2054-how-content-will-save-coverJust 13 years ago, Steven Spielberg’s Minority Report envisioned the year 2054 as one in which marketing and advertising are so invasive that holograms make frenzied, customized sales pitches to people as they walk through the mall.

In an unnerving scene, protagonist John Anderton’s eyes flashed as retina scanners identified him from a customer database and pushy holograms pitched him items based on his previous purchases, personal attributes, and preferences.

We still have almost 40 years to go until the film’s setting, but it’s already pretty obvious what the screenwriters got right about the future of marketing (big data, personalized ads) and what they probably got wrong – aside from our endless cultural obsession with holograms. Hollywood often shows us how exotic technologies might revolutionize well-worn concepts like display advertising (or heck, even malls), but how well does it predict the totally new concepts that might replace them?

The inescapable sales chatter in Minority Report’s mall scene was meant to raise privacy questions, making 2002 audiences uncomfortable with how much marketers might know about each consumer in the future. To marketers, the scene demonstrates the potential of big data and why marketers need a complementary personalization strategy to make a better first impression.

Now, cue content marketing, which provides value to people and businesses researching their purchases. Its softer approach may be the thing that spares us from the suffocating ad bombardment Spielberg’s film predicted.

One marketing channel is always on
In 2015, businesses have a content channel from which their target audiences never walk away: mobile.

Last November, mobile ad company Flurry found that Americans now spend nearly three hours per day on their mobile devices – more than they spend watching TV. Even more remarkable is that mobile time jumped almost 10 percent in just nine months. As wearable technology enters the mainstream in 2015 and beyond, one would expect that mobile time would grow.

Today, most of us sleep within reach of our smartphones, continuing to read them late at night and first thing in the morning. If a question comes into our heads as we hit the pillow, we have to Google it before we can fall asleep. It’s not difficult to imagine that these habits may even affect our dreams.

According to a Salesforce Marketing Cloud study, searching for information online is the third most frequent activity performed on mobile devices – surpassed only by checking emails and text messages, and more popular than social networking.

If someone in your target audience has a problem that you can solve, the only important question is whether your content is relevant and comprehensive enough to be the best answer on the web during your prospects’ mobile searches. That is the difference between tons of business and very little.

We know quality content is increasingly important to marketing, and that trend is likely to continue as search volume creeps higher. So how could this affect the way marketing is practiced later in the 21st century? Or is 2054 marketing already here?

Advertising will build a better case for products and services by figuring out whom and what we trust
Unilever Senior Vice President of Marketing Marc Mathieu says, “Marketing used to be about creating a myth and selling it and is now about finding a truth and sharing it.”

Minority Report was right to imagine advertising messages tailored to individuals based on their behaviors, interests, and purchase histories. But rather than using unknown virtual sales assistants to make the pitch, today’s brands highlight social media recommendations from our friends and colleagues. If those aren’t available, they send us the kinds of stats or stories to which we have a history of responding.

Expect this trend to continue as our homes become populated with web-connected technology. In 2054, if you start preparing Korean barbecue tacos with Huy Fong chili paste on your “smart” countertop, the kitchen interface may ask if you want to share this recipe with friends. These friends might receive an ad informing them that you use this brand and a list of the recipes you’ve made with it – or even a video of you putting the meal together.

Big brands will purchase virtually all major media companies
In the short term, media companies will continue to amass portfolios of niche and special interest publications to increase ad revenue. This makes them increasingly attractive to major brands, which are starting to see the media outlets as a way to immediately acquire engaged, targeted audiences to whom they can advertise directly.

Many people might consider this to be a dystopian future for journalism – one that would scare away readership. But the Content Marketing Institute’s Joe Pulizzi does a good job of explaining why brands might actually do a better job of delivering quality content than today’s media owners.

The things you talk about will influence the type of content marketing you see
If you use Gmail, you know that Google has been serving you ads relevant to the topics discussed in your emails for years. The same concept is expected to be applied to wearable devices that will be able to transcribe your conversations. Advertisers already can tell some of our interests by analyzing our hashtags and follows on Twitter and Instagram. But as image-recognition technology improves, brands will be able to understand what we care about by identifying the subjects of our photos and videos.

Content will be delivered based on our activities and emotions, not just our location
Location will continue to determine the kinds of ads we see. For example, our favorite local retail store may send a mobile notification about a sale to us as we walk by the shop. Wearables also will give businesses plenty of other data such as heart and perspiration rates, and even emotional states so they can determine when content might be welcome and when it might be considered a nuisance.

Some brands will invest in wearable products primarily for the potential to create content relationships that strengthen brand loyalty. Imagine receiving a personal evaluation and video tutorials on adjusting your running style from a fitness brand after jogging in your new Ralph Lauren fitness tracking shirt. Or maybe your future shirt “learns” you typically run between 6:45 and 7:30 a.m., starting at the intersection of Damen and Wabansia streets. So a brand monitoring your wearable-tech shirt emails you a blog post about the best breakfast foods to eat before a run and lists stores and restaurants near the beginning of your route that are open.

And if we leave our Microsoft HoloLenses at home, we won’t be harassed by holograms
After all, public three-dimensional projections look the same to everyone and isn’t mass messaging a bit old-fashioned?

Want to learn more about the future of content marketing? Check out the CMWorld 2014 sessions available through our Video on Demand portal and make plans today to attend Content Marketing World 2015.

The post Content Marketing Altering the Future Predicted in ‘Minority Report’ appeared first on Content Marketing Institute.

For more on this article including images see :
https://omhub.wordpress.com/2015/02/15/content-marketing-altering-the-future-predicted-in-minority-report/

Content Marketing Altering the Future Predicted in ‘Minority Report’ page was posted “By Mike Armstrong”

Can You Grow Your Organic Traffic Without Generating Content?

New post on Online Marketing Hub

Can You Grow Your Organic Traffic Without Generating Content?
by christopherjanb
content marketing

Did you know that the average web page that ranks on page 1 of Google has at least 2,000 words of text?

That means if you want more organic traffic, you have to create tons of content, right?

What if you don’t have a content bone in your body—does that mean that you’re out of luck when it comes to your rankings?

There has to be another solution…

Luckily for you, there is. Before we get into that, let’s first dispel the myth that you have to generate more content to grow your organic traffic.

Does more content mean more organic traffic?
When you think of the best ranking sites on the web, which ones come to mind? Sites like Wikipedia, The New York Times, Huffington Post, and Mashable, right?

The reason all of these sites rank so well is because they have thousands—if not millions—of pages with unique content. In general, if you create more content, you’re giving search engines more keywords that will help them rank your site.

word count

If you look at the image by SerpIQ, you’ll see that the average web page that ranks on page 1 of Google contains at least 2,032 words (see link). And when you look at the top three positions, you’ll notice that those web pages have at least 2,400 words.

When you start dissecting the keywords that most of these content-rich sites rank for, the majority tend to be long-tail keywords. Just look at Quick Sprout: 91% of my organic traffic is generated through long-tail terms due to the fact that I write content on anything related to marketing.

long tail traffic

But that doesn’t mean you can’t get rankings if you don’t produce content. Take UpWorthy as an example: they get millions of visitors from search engines when they rarely write more than 100 words of content on a page.

If you search for the phrase “unrealistic bodies,” you’ll see UpWorthy with the first spot on Google.

upworthy rankings

What’s even more impressive is that the body of the post contains only 55 keywords.

You may say that “unrealistic bodies” isn’t a popular search term. And it isn’t. But UpWorthy is competing with 19 million other web pages that also rank for that term. Which means they must be doing something right…

Plus, it’s not the only search term they rank for. They rank for 17,112 more popular terms according to SEMrush. And some of these terms are indeed popular… such as “Rosa Parks” or “Robin Williams.”

But UpWorthy still generates content
I know what you are thinking… UpWorthy only gets organic traffic because they generate content. And sure, they may not create as much content as Wikipedia, but to some extent they still create text-based content.

Airbnb, on the other hand, also generates millions of organic visitors a month, and they rank for competitive terms like “vacation rentals.”

If you look at Airbnb’s home page, what don’t you see? You don’t see much content.

airbnb homepage

Even when you look at listing pages, the only content you see is short descriptions and reviews, both provided by users. The user-generated content might be helping them rank, but it doesn’t perform as well as it would if it were Airbnb-generated content.

Just look at this warning I got from Google last year…

google warning

It shows that Google knows the difference between user-generated content and content created by the website owner. Still, Airbnb ranks for long-tail terms like “Brookstone apartment by Central Park.”

airbnb rankings

And if you want to see a site that ranks well but contains little to no content, check out WhitePages. Just perform a search, and you’ll see that their listing pages contain little to no content, yet they rank for competitive terms like “people search.”

So, what’s the secret to ranking high if you don’t want to focus on content generation? It’s backlinks.

Do backlinks help with rankings?
What Upworthy, Airbnb, and WhitePages have in common is they have a lot of natural backlinks pointing to their websites. When I compared them to QuickSprout.com using my analyzer tool, I saw that both sites have more organic traffic than Quick Sprout even though Quick Sprout contains web pages with more in-depth and longer content—over 2000 words per page.

analysis

If that doesn’t help convince you that links are important, consider this: Moz asked 120 search marketers what they felt impacts a site’s ranking on Google. Can you guess which factor they listed as most important?

rankings analysis

As you can see from the chart above, links are the most important factor (see link below). Twelve out of the top 15 ranking factors were all link-related.

When you look at these popular sites that contain thousands of backlinks and little to no content per page, you’ll also notice that they have something else in common…

They have a lot of web pages indexed. Airbnb has around 45 million pages indexed; Upworthy has close to 10,000; and WhitePages has 105 million.

So, how can you grow your organic traffic without generating more content?

How to grow your organic traffic
Just like Airbnb, Upworthy, and WhitePages, you can get hundreds of thousands—if not millions—of organic visitors per month as long as you do the following:

Build more pages – whether your pages are content-rich or not, you need more web pages. The more pages you have, the higher your probability of ranking for more long-tail terms.
Make your pages count – if Google doesn’t like the content quality on your web pages, you will get slapped with a Panda penalty. To avoid this, you want to utilize technology that helps you create valuable web pages, like White Pages has done. Or you can choose to focus on creating user-generated content such as reviews, like Yelp and Airbnb have done.
Press builds links – UpWorthy, Yelp, and Airbnb all did a wonderful job getting media exposure. By getting mentioned on sites like The New York Times, not only were they gaining traffic but they were also building up their backlink profiles, which helped their search engine traffic. To get media exposure, you can either hire a PR agency or use a free service like HARO.
Be proactive – there are dozens of ways to build links if you are willing to put in the time. This article I wrote recently breaks down seven tactics such as leveraging Quora or using broken link building. And if you find yourself with more free time, check out this guide on link building.
Be patient – if you aren’t writing in-depth articles, your search traffic won’t grow that quickly. In the long run, you can still gain organic traffic, but don’t expect miracles overnight. I remember when I first started checking out Airbnb, they were getting over 100,000 visitors a month from search, and most of the organic traffic came from people searching their brand name. Things are different now, but it took time.
Conclusion
You can grow your organic traffic without generating content. It won’t be as easy as leveraging content marketing, but it is still possible.

Just look at companies like Apple, Microsoft, IBM, and Amazon. They all receive millions of organic visitors a month, and none of them truly focus on blogging. Instead, they focus on creating great products or services.

If you want to grow your organic traffic and you don’t want to create content, focus on building backlinks. It’s the best way to generate more search traffic, even though it is hard work.

How many backlinks does your site have?

For more including images and charts see:
https://omhub.wordpress.com/2015/02/02/can-you-grow-your-organic-traffic-without-generating-content/

Can You Grow Your Organic Traffic Without Generating Content page posted “By Mike Armstrong”

What You Need to Know About Content & Influencer Marketing in 2015

New Post on Online Marketing Hub

What You Need to Know About Content & Influencer Marketing in 2015
by christopherjanb
influencer co-created content

Influencer Marketing was a hot topic in 2014 and will continue to gain momentum in 2015 for both B2C and B2B marketers, especially when it comes to content co-creation.

“Why” the warm and fuzzy for influencer content you ask? According to CMI and MarketingProfs, over 90% of B2B marketers are investing in content marketing. Yet, in an age of information overload where 74GB of data are delivered per person, per day (USC), standing out to business buyers can require unreasonable budgets and resources.

Inspired by the need to scale content marketing performance, a growing number of B2B marketers are creating better quality content that gets shared more often, reaches more prospects and grows their influencer network – all at the same time. How so? Through influencer content programs.

Influencer Content Marketing Case Study:
Content Marketing Wonderland eBooks

In 2014 TopRank Online Marketing worked with Content Marketing Institute to create an influencer content program to promote the Content Marketing World conference. The campaign theme of “Alice in Wonderland” aka “Content Marketing Wonderland” borrowed from the conference theme of “Beyond Storytelling”.

The program involved 40+ marketing industry influencers from major brands including: Altimeter Group, Caterpillar, Indium Corporation, charity: water, Bittorrent, Bed, Bath & Beyond, SAP, John Deere, Lattice Engines, Kapost, Progressive Insurance, Boeing, MarketingProfs, ExactTarget, Copyblogger, Red Hat, Facebook, EMC Corporation, Cisco Systems, Tumblr, Microsoft, LinkedIn, Dell, Content Marketing Institute, NewsCred, Kraft Foods and more.

Objectives:
Develop an opportunity for influential speakers to participate in content creation that would promote their presentations, the CMWorld conference and create a useful and infotaining resource for all marketers interested in content marketing. The underwriting sponsor for the program was Curata.

Implementation:
Influencers were drawn from the roster of nearly 200 speakers for the event. Based on criteria, influencers were identified, qualified, recruited and engaged to provide advice according to one of 4 themes (Content Marketing Strategy, Audience Development, Visual Content, Content ROI) that coincided with the programming of the event.

Insights provided by the influencers were compiled according to theme into 4 Visual eBooks. Each eBook was complemented by a long form interview with select influencers and posted here on TopRank’s Online Marketing Blog. Each Visual eBook was also supported with an infographic (4 in all) featuring Tweetable quotes from each influencer.

Content Assets Included:

Content Marketing Strategy eBook, infographic, long form interview and blog post
Audience Development eBook, infographic, long form interview and blog post
Visual Content Marketing Strategy eBook, long form interview and blog post
Content Marketing ROI eBook, infographic, long form interview and blog post
All assets were supported with social shares on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ from participating influencers, CMI, Curata and TopRank Marketing.

Performance:
Primary objectives for the program were conference awareness and speaker/influencer exposure measured by page views, and leads for the underwriting sponsor. Leading up to the conference (mid Sept), the eBooks earned thousands of social shares, over 145,000 views on SlideShare and 20,000 page views on TopRankBlog. By the time the conference was held, there were 2,000+ PDF downloads, 800 leads and 200+ event referrals.

All campaign assets remained live for several months after the campaign and the total views, downloads and leads as of Dec 30, 2014 were:

218,971 Total eBook Views:
4,023 Total eBook PDF Downloads:
1,040 Total Leads Captured
The net result of the program was substantial and sustained exposure for the conference, speakers and sponsor leading up to and after the event. Of course TopRank Online Marketing benefitted from exposure through virtually every single content asset, social share and download resulting in numerous inquiries and several ongoing consulting engagements and projects. Overall it was a successful campaign and is the reason we’re producing another conference eBook program for CMI in 2015 – the 5th year in a row.

Along with this case study, I’ve realized that we’ve literally written an eBook-worth of content on the topic of influencer and content marketing.

If you’d like to make working with influencers and co-created content a more productive part of your digital marketing mix in 2015, here are 18 posts to get you up to speed from strategy and planning to winning a budget to tools to performance measurement and optimization.

The Fallacy of Influence – Lee Odden
8 Things You Need to Know About Influencer Marketing – Brian Larson
How Content Plus an Influencer Network Can Grow Your Business – Emily Bacheller
The Hidden Value of Influencers in B2B Content Marketing – Lee Odden
How to Get Executive Buy-In for Your B2B Influencer Marketing Program – Brooke Furry
Customer & Influencer Research in Social Media – Lee Odden
Influencer Marketing and Content FTW! 7 Steps to Co-Created Awesome – Lee Odden
9 Tools to Discover Influencers in Your Industry – Lee Odden
Influencer Marketing in 5 Simple Steps – Jesse Pickrain
The Power of Influence in Content Marketing – Lee Odden
Content and Influencer Marketing is A Powerful Way to Grow Your Business – Lee Odden
5 Tips on Crowdsourcing Your Brand’s Influence – Nick Ehrenberg
Influencer Outreach – 5 Ways to Fail – Lee Odden
How to Incorporate SEO and Influencer Content – Lee Odden
How a Shift from All SEO to Social & Influencer Content Boosted Page Views by 500% – Lee Odden
B2B Marketing Innovation: Tips On Creating Social Influence in B2B Marketing from Alan Belniak of PTC – Lee Odden
The Truth About Influence in B2B Marketing from Master Strategist Paul Gillin – Lee Odden
New Report: How Content Co-Creation With Influencers Beats Information Overload – Lee Odden
If that isn’t enough, here’s info on an upcoming presentation on influencer and content marketing I’m giving for the fine folks at BMA Colorado on February 11th, “Create Demand and B2B Marketing Influence with Co-Created Content“.

In the presentation, I’ll talk about best practices and how we’ve worked with organizations like Content Marketing Institute, MarketingProfs and LinkedIn to leveraged influencer content programs to attract and engage business buyers.

Some of the takeaways include:
– How influencer content creates solutions for multiple audiences
– How to identify, qualify and recruit the right influencers
– How co-created, modular content is planned, collected, assembled and repurposed
– How to inspire co-creators to help amplify your content
– How to use the Attract, Engage, Convert model for influencer content performance optimization
– Best and worst practices when working with influencers on an ongoing basis

Of course, if you’re not in Denver, then here’s a variation on that presentation that I’ll be giving at the B2B C2C conference in Scottsdale, AZ on February 17th, “B2B Content at Scale – How to Create a Competitive Advantage by Crowdsourcing Marketing Content with Influencers“.
| http://ift.tt/faSbAI

For more including images see:
https://omhub.wordpress.com/2015/01/27/what-you-need-to-know-about-content-influencer-marketing-in-2015/

The What You Need to Know About Content & Influencer Marketing in 2015 page was posted “By Mike Armstrong”

5 Steps to Run Effective Large-scale Content Projects

New post on Online Marketing Hub

5 Steps to Run Effective Large-scale Content Projects
by christopherjanb
5_Steps_Large_Scale_Content_Projects_CoverLarge content projects involve lots of content creation, be that content in the form of words, images, or videos in a relatively short time. Is such a project on your road map, but you’re not sure where to get started? Or maybe you work in a business that produces only small amounts of content, but you’ve always wondered what goes into erecting the girders of large content production projects. I’ve worked on my share of large-scale projects. Think writing 1.6 million words in 12 weeks, auditing 3,000 URLs in 50 days, and updating 910 hotel websites weekly. It’s not always pretty, and it’s not always easy, but it is definitely doable and – dare I say – even enjoyable if done correctly.

Operationally, there are a lot of moving parts to consider when setting up a large-scale content production team. The larger the project, the more opportunities exist for Murphy’s law – what can go wrong will go wrong – to show itself. It’s important that you take the time to properly lay the foundation to guide and support a great team of content producers before beginning your content production. Although this post primarily focuses on the production of textual content, the principles can easily apply to other content forms, including images and videos. Similarly, many of the core principles can apply to smaller production teams.

1. Properly vet content producers
The content is only as good as the people who create it. It is critical that you pinpoint people who are creative yet task-oriented to complete the job by deadline according to your specifications. Evaluate experience and ability in light of the available budget. One main factor that could affect cost and quality is the type of writer you need – a generalist who is an all-around good writer with a broad base of experience who can do research to educate herself and write for a lay audience, or a true expert who is deeply knowledgeable on a subject and can really explain the nuances or cutting-edge issues for a specialized audience.

Vet_Content_Producers_Image

Some people assume that writers and editors are interchangeable, but this is not the case. You need a team where each role – from writer to project manager – has specific skills. With any writing, editing, or proofreading role, you want to ensure that candidates have experience, employ proper grammar and punctuation, and can share a portfolio of their work. However, you can’t stop there. Here are some additional standout qualities unique to each position:

Writer

Creativity in brainstorming ideas and giving a fresh perspective
Quick and efficient research skills
Accurate and interesting work
Editor

Proven ability to coach and lead small teams
Willingness to provide feedback in a positive manner
Ability to balance the big-picture focus and organization of the article while still attending to small but important grammatical details
Willingness to daringly reorganize items and/or cut items
When vetting writers and editors, we often ask them to complete a writing-and-editing test in addition to providing work samples. These tests usually yield more accurate results because they require on-the-spot creation with the provided subject matter. This small time investment by writer or editor candidates is usually worth it when they want to acquire a large amount of work from you. However, don’t rely strictly on the test. We’ve found that some highly specialized writers may have a wealth of information to share, but also may need a strong editor.

Proofreader

Attention to detail and organization
Ability to stick to proofreading and not rewrite a piece or edit for content (it’s harder than it sounds)
Project manager

Experience guiding teams through content creation projects
Workflow mapping and editorial calendar creation experience
Familiarity with relevant technology
Proven ability to juggle many different items at once
Ability to communicate and answer questions
Capability to coach, teach, and lead teams
Fearlessness in pruning non-performers from the team
Attention to detail and organization
Proven writing and editing experience
2. Develop a content style guide
Create a content style guide that is shareable with both your client and contractors/employees. The style guide should not be about how to do it (see No. 3 on training materials for that), but rather a what-to-produce document. Style guides often offer the guidelines on format, logo size, logo color, font type, etc. A content style guide certainly can include those elements, but it also focuses on the vision of the content, including:

Target audience
Strategic objectives
Tone, voice, and style
Samples of approved work
Examples of pieces that don’t make the cut (sometimes these are even more helpful than approved pieces)
Examples of tactical items such as headline format, meta data, and specific grammar and usage rules
3. Develop training materials
The better your training materials are, the less time you will spend providing feedback and revisions, and the happier your client will be with the end product. Create a detailed training manual and instructional videos that should be the ultimate reference guide for the project. The manual should be required reading for all contractors and employees working on the project. Focus on:

Audience: Address new-to-the-project contractors or employees; don’t make knowledge-based assumptions.
Pathways: Write for multiple roles (e.g., writers, editors, proofers, project managers).
Process: Clearly spell out workflow and who does what when.
Checklists: Provide role-specific checklists and focus on the most important items each role must perform.
Samples: Provide several samples of quality work.
Screenshots: Provide lots of screenshots to illustrate instructions; pictures are easier to digest and remember.
Table of contents: Provide organization and easy access.
Appendix: Provide further detail if needed.
Instructional videos are hugely useful in training large teams; they distill the information in the training guides into quickly digestible image and sound bites. Videos don’t have to be super polished as they are meant as internal resources to help content producers catch the vision for the project and understand the ground rules. You can use inexpensive software like Camtasia, KnowledgeVision or Adobe Voice to create helpful training videos. Create a series of four- to five-minute videos that focus on specific topics or specific roles (e.g., writer, editor, proofreader).

Training_Video_Example

4. Establish clear deadlines, chain of command, and workflow
Make sure each contractor or employee is provided with clear assignments and deadlines, and understands the importance of meeting those deadlines. Clearly state ramifications if deadlines are missed. Each person on the project should have a direct supervisor to whom he can go with questions, problems, emergencies, etc. Limit the number of people reporting to each supervisor so the project stays manageable. The bigger the project, the more small teams you need to keep production chugging along. Keys to a smoothly running project:

Content management system: Use an easy-to-understand and constantly accessible online tool (your own CMS or Google Drive) to provide access to assignments and deadlines.
Communicate: Provide updates when assignments or deadlines change. Setting expectations early and reminding often are key.
Workflow: Make sure all roles know when and how to share their work with the next person to work on the content. Map a crystal-clear workflow (and include in your training documentation).
5. Provide feedback regularly
It’s important to provide feedback to writers and editors early in the process. Put a team system in place so every writer and editor’s work is reviewed promptly and revisions are guided and double-checked. This prevents the log-jam effect wherein writers are toiling away on their third or fourth piece only to be told their first piece was done incorrectly. They have to go back and revise all the pieces. It’s much easier to revise one piece first and then do the rest correctly than it is to revise three or four pieces and still produce pieces five and six to stay on schedule.

Project managers or senior editors should coach new writers and editors through the process, providing clear and specific feedback about ways their work is making or missing the mark (remember, positive feedback can be just as helpful as critical feedback). Project managers should actively look for:

Dead weight: There are some poor or non-performers in every large-scale project. Set criteria in advance for what dead weight means to your project and be prepared to make cuts accordingly. Criteria could include:
o Number of revision requests by the editor or project manager

o Number of mistakes in the copy

o Number of missed deadlines

Shining stars: There will always be people who are very good at the project and there might be some who can advance to new levels of value. These can include:
o Writers who might make good editors

o Writers or editors who might make good senior editors or project managers

o Contractors who might work great for future or other projects going on within your company

Finally, quality assurance should be a continual part of the process. Don’t assume that once everyone’s been vetted, instructed, reviewed, and coached that production will stay top shelf. That opens the door for Murphy’s law. Stay vigilant, performing random quality assurance checks on all work at various stages – writing, editing, and proofreading.

Large-scale content production is a complicated business, but organization and pre-game planning can make the difference between success and failure. There are hiccups in every project, but by following these five steps, you will be well on your way to setting up a top-notch content production team.

Want more instruction on how to manage today’s biggest content marketing challenges? Sign up for the Content Marketing Institute Online Training and Certification program. Access over 35 courses, taught by experts from Google, Mashable, SAP, and more.

The post 5 Steps to Run Effective Large-scale Content Projects appeared first on Content Marketing Institute.

For more including pictures see:
https://omhub.wordpress.com/2015/01/18/5-steps-to-run-effective-large-scale-content-projects/

5 Steps to Run Effective Large-scale Content Projects page posted “By Mike Armstrong”

How to Know When You Need a Content Marketing Agency

New post on Online Marketing Hub

How to Know When You Need a Content Marketing Agency
by christopherjanb

Content marketing agencies don’t try to compete with the full-service marketing agencies. They aren’t the be-everything-to-everyone resource, but they do offer unique value to a cross section of the business community that can benefit from an agency dedicated to content.

Here are five situations where this specialized service might be what the business needs:

1. Early-stage startups that need a flexible marketing solution
You worked out your business plan, logo, website, and all that important stuff. You have seed or Series A funding, but still need to be frugal. Until you receive a more significant investment round, you’re not ready to hire a full-time marketing employee.

You can pay a retainer to a content marketing agency and gain a dedicated content solution that can be customized to meet your evolving needs. Look for agencies that allow clients to modify their retainer packages at least quarterly to allow for the flexibility that a startup requires. Content marketing agencies can assist with planning your online marketing strategy. They can assist in developing written content that meets the diverse needs of a startup, including web copy, case studies, blog content, and white papers. Because your marketing strategy may evolve quickly, an agency gives you the ability to tap into a pool of talent that can be scaled to meet your company’s demand.

2. Mid-sized or large organizations without sufficient internal resources
You’ve got a solid marketing strategy, but when it comes time to execute, you don’t have staff members who have the time to produce content along with all the meetings, trade shows, and other tasks on their plates.

A content marketing agency can collaborate with your internal team to create the content on your editorial calendar, including working with your CEO and subject-matter experts to create blog content and demand-generation papers on their behalf. However, as CMI’s Michele Linn points out, if you don’t have executive buy-in for your content marketing efforts, it will be difficult to tie in an outsourced provider’s work with your larger marketing strategy. To be most effective, it can be helpful to first plan a content marketing strategy and rough editorial calendar internally before you contract with an agency. In addition, a several-month trial run with an agency can help you determine how successful the effort is, and whether it may be worth investing in a full-time employee to assist with content marketing.

3. Organizations with temporary staffing challenges
If your marketing manager just put in her two-week notice or needs to take a three-month medical leave, your blog, and other content marketing efforts don’t need to take a hiatus. A content marketing agency can fill the gaps to sustain your content efforts.

When possible, it’s important to bring in the agency while your employee is still working. While an agency’s role may be limited to content development, it is important to give the agency a clear picture of the company’s overall messaging and voice so that it can develop appropriate content to meet your goals. Many agencies are willing to step in for a set duration, which can be much more fruitful than hiring a temporary employee who is likely on the hunt for a full-time job.

4. Business professionals who want to build their industry reputation
Many business professionals, including CEOs, consultants, doctors, attorneys, and other leaders, want to build or manage their reputations online, but don’t have the time to blog regularly. Hiring a content marketing team to ghostwrite content on your behalf and develop an influencer outreach strategy can be an ideal solution. It’s important to ensure that your content accurately supports your opinions, so you can’t put your strategy on autopilot. By collaborating with an agency to identify the key messages to share with a broader audience, you can build your reputation with minimal time investment. If the agency acts as your ghostwriter, it is important to have a non-disclosure agreement.

5. Marketing agencies without in-house content marketing expertise
You may not have the content expertise to complete a client project that relies heavily on long-form content because your agency focuses on ad copy and design work. In this case, subcontracting to a content marketing agency can be helpful. You can choose to brand the content as “white-label” content, which does not reveal the content marketing agency’s involvement, or identify it as outsourced work so your client can correspond directly with your subcontracted team. While white-label content may help maintain the image of a firm that can do it all, you’ll need to be careful that you don’t run into communication errors when passing feedback to the subcontracted agency or a project could easily get off track.

If you run a content marketing agency or you’ve hired one for your organization, what are some other scenarios where a standalone content marketing agency might be a good choice? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Want more expert insight on how to address your content marketing challenges? Check out all the fantastic CMW sessions that are available through our Video on Demand portal.

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