Here is a recap on what's happened this week in regards to content marketing.. Enjoy!
The content conundrum: 5 ways to create expert content with little resources
If you're a small business, it's more than likely, there is one person handling not only social media, but also the content marketing. This involves blogging, writing email newsletters, answering social media comments, and writing guest posts as part of blogger outreach. As your customers are more than likely to use social media as a way to do their research before purchasing, it's extremely important that you produce great content that will build your credibility and develop relationships.... Anita O'Malley from PerspectivMarketing.com shows you how.
General Mills explain their success in content marketing
An interesting article by Forbes who interviewed the top 3 leading advertisers and their content strategy. General Mills discusses their magazine Tablespoon and how it helped their brands.
How to be a formidable content curator - a 17 step guide.
A great post on how to share awesome, relevant content for your audience using the simplest of tools. Chris Lake of econsultancy.com explains that being a resource can mean finding information that your readers can't find on their own.
7 New things to do after you've written a new blog post
A week late, but here is a great update from Brody Dorland from DivvyHQ on how to promote your blog post to get maximum visibility. We highly recommend #3 - tie in Google+ to your blog especially with the Panda and Penguin updates.
As writers, we love anything related to content marketing and writing, which is why we've compiled a list of great content tips and articles from around the web... Check it out.
27 awesome ways to get people to listen to you
As a blogger or content marketer, not only do you need to create and maintain your editorial schedule, but you also have to do some blog marketing. This involves commenting on other sites, doing guest blogging, promoting your posts and connecting with others through social media. All this is tough to maintain over a period of time. This article shares a few ways how to get your readers to listen to you...
3 tips for increasing your content productivity
Being productive in your blogging is a problem that many online marketers have. Your success in blogging is dependent on being consistent, organized and relevant. This article outlines how you can produce quality content frequently.
12 important steps bloggers should never forget
A blog is a great way for you to get your message out. However, if you're not showing up on Google and your traffic is low, make sure that you follow these steps.
10 must have templates for content marketers
Being organized is key in your content marketing strategy. These templates will help you clarify your vision and create an content map that will allow you to provide fresh, relevant content that meets your prospects needs.
You’ve just created a new blog for your website and have published a few great posts. And like the saying - if you build it, the readers will come. And so you wait for the rush.
But nothing happens.
So, now you're thinking, "What do I need to do to bring people to my blog?"
And the answer is: People won't know your blog exists if you don't market it! Not only must you optimize your blog for the search engines, you should have also created a marketing campaign that will help bring visibility to your blog launch.
Here are a few things that you can do to get the blog marketing ball rolling.
For those who love to travel, looking for the best deal can be extremely frustrating with all the travel operators, airlines and hotels on the internet. With the prevalence of group deals and hundreds of tour operators, there is stiff competition to grab the consumers' attention. With sites like TravelAlerts, consumers can comparison shop and look for the best rates and cheapest deals in one location.
TravelAlerts.ca is what you call a travel affiliate site, where they aggregate the deals by their travel partners and deliver it by email or listing it on their site. Although they are riding on the coattails of the Daily Deals and group buying sites, their business model does not revolve around group buying.
Trends in the travel industry
Travel has always been an extremely competitive; however, TravelAlerts have largely succeeded because of their focus on Canadian travel deals. Now that the Canadian daily deals space is getting crowded, they need to build a stronger brand and adjust their lead generation strategy to take advantage of new consumer trends in the travel industry.
Some trends that are being seen are:
Consumers do not respond to highly discounted deals anymore. They are looking for great value.
Due to the high cost of PPC advertising for travel, it makes sense to focus on SEO and content marketing as a way to build value and their brand at the same time. One of the best tactics to do that is to create frequent content in the form of an online magazine. This not only grabs the attention of search engines but also engages prospects...
Here are some more reasons why creating an online magazine can help TravelAlerts:
How can they do it? Some quick tips in creating an online magazine...
Creating a magazine isn't just about making a new website and posting content on a regular basis. You have to do your planning and understand that it meets the needs of your readers while achieving your marketing goals. Here is a list of things you need to do in order to set up a magazine.
1. Do your research
Research your competition and potential topics on what you will write about. Understand your readers and get answers to these questions:
Once you have enough research information, you can use the data for your content plan.
2. Create a content plan
Like a business plan, a content plan allows you to focus your content towards achieving your marketing goals. Your content plan components will include:
Although print magazines may be dying, the online versions are not...By creating one, not only will you be able to achieve your marketing goals from:
Creating an online magazine is more than just producing a few articles and posting it. You need to that the content you create is focused and relevant for the specific audience you want to attract. Like a marketing campaign, content is used for a purpose, to either get sales or make your prospect perform an action that you can convert to a sale in the future.
Doing anything else is a waste of time.
A lot of people argue that of the goals of an online content marketing strategy is to support your link building efforts. However, content marketing should be more than just a way to get link juice for SEO purposes. You should consider it as a way to build your brand - increasing your reach within your target market. Here is why guest posting should be a part of your online content strategy.
1. You get more brand exposure
If you have a popular blog, you know the speed in which buzz can be created from publishing a great post - controversial or not. When you write as a guest blogger on another site (or even have someone write on your site), not only do those readers get an unique point of view, they have access to new expertise that they couldn't have found themselves.
Readers always look for fresh information and once they realize that they get great content, it's more likely that they will share the blog to others. By writing on other blogs as a guest poster, you are taking advantage of expanding your network and brand exposure by showcasing your expertise. You will have access to new readers and by engaging them, they will perhaps become your fans.
2. Improving your website's SEO
It doesn't matter if you guest post on another blog, or have someone post on yours, guest posting is not only a way to get more varied and interesting content but also helps with your own site's SEO. By posting on popular blogs, you get the opportunity to get your name on authority blogs, whose backlinks will provide you with some great link juice from search engines. Additionally, when readers find content that is interesting and informative, they tend to share it with others. With traffic from guest postings, plus shares amongst readers, you will receive targeted organic traffic. Many SEO experts mention that receiving a high authority backlink from a guest post carry more weight from Google than the thousands of links received from article marketing or directory submissions.
Remember that writing for your own blog is quite different from writing guest posts for others. You must not only be aware of the writing style of the blog but also make sure that your topic is related to readers' interests. Take the time to write a great guest post as this will be your calling card to increasing your own blog's visibility.
We always get asked by our clients as to how often they should post content on their blogs... Our answer is that you should post frequently and consistently. Here is a great article with great data to back us up... What is the best blog frequency...
How not to make your press release boring..
A well written press release attracts the attention of not only the press, but your customers as well. An ineffective press releases benefits neither your company nor your prospects, but fortunately, it is easy to create a press release than the complemuch more common sense than it is rocket science.
Although you may have heard of the upside down pyramid method of creating an effective press release, there are other concepts that you should be aware of:
Due to the brief nature of press release, it’s not surprising how many marketing professionals seem to get it wrong as they don't put a high importance to the process.
When it comes to creating content for your website, there are a lot of myths out there. If you ask online marketers, webmasters, and bloggers about their opinions on creating content, you’ll receive so many different answers it'll be hard to separate fact from fiction. We'd like to set the story straight. In no particular order, here are six misconceptions on creating online content so you can avoid making mistakes that may kill your website...
Writing for SEO doesn't mean that you must sacrifice on quality.
Why would you want to drive users to your site, only to push them away with poor content? It is wasted effort and becomes expensive for the long term.
Using a plagiarism detection service or rewriting an article makes it unique.
Putting an article through a plagiarism software only checks to see if it's a duplicate article. It doesn't mean that the article is unique and can't be found elsewhere. If your article is considered to be a duplicate, even when it's rewritten and passes Copyscape you could still be penalized by the Big G.
Article marketing works, sometimes.
When Google changed it's algorithm to include the Panda update, it dramatically affected spam article directories such as EzineArticles.com, ehow.com and others. Don't worry, it doesn’t mean that article marketing no longer works, it's that you'll have to make sure that your articles meet stricter quality standards. Poorly spun and private label rights articles won’t do well. However, original, well-written, and informative articles helps, especially when other websites link back to it for their readers. Be careful when posting junk because it will affect your website's brand..
Keyword density is king.
While keywords are important, stuffing your article with a particular keyword is frowned upon by Google. The best way to get great organic search rankings is by:
using the keyword phrases strategically, including variations of the keyword,
creating anchor text, considering basic SEO tactics such as headlines, bolding etc.,
and encouraging incoming links.
Work ends once the content is uploaded.
Once your content is uploaded, your work does not stop there! Not only must you continue to add fresh, original content to your site on a frequent basis, you must also start promoting it. This will keep the search engines and, most importantly, your users coming back.
Web content writing is the same as writing for print.
Writing for the web requires a different skillset than writing a print publication. Not only must you be aware of who you're writing for, you should also have knowledge of SEO, article structure and readability. You have to remember that readers do not read online, they scan material quickly following a triangular path on a web page.
Creating online content isn’t easy and as an online marketer, you must be aware of how these misconceptions can cause more damage than good.
Creating content on a regular basis can be challenging, especially when, you as a marketing director have other deadlines and responsibilities. In another post, we've discussed how you should create a content plan as a way to organize and generate content. We've provided a few tips to generate content ideas if you're struggling for blog topics.
Another great way to add to your portfolio of blog topics are interviews... Here is why:
Planning the interview
Understand that there is a purpose to your content. Know that your readers are here to learn more about solutions to their problems through your blog. Ask yourself:
Doing the interview
Make sure that you are prepared before the interview. Do your research on your subject, it's always good to over-prepare. Read their articles, blogs and anything that they have published. The more you know about them, the easier it is to ask insightful questions. Write out the questions ahead of time, and leave enough leeway for side topics during the interview. Prior to the call, prepare the interviewee on who the audience is so that he is aware on how to present the message the right way.
The success of your interview would depend on the technology you're using. If you're doing an audio interview over the phone, a great tool to use is Skype. With Skype you can not only call your interviewee but also have the option to record the audio. You can then transcribe it afterwards into text for your blog...
Let us know who you want us to interview...
We would like to provide you with the best information possible in regards to content marketing or online marketing. Let us know who you would like us to interview in the comments and we'll do our best get their expertise.
Let's analyze an existing website to determine the how effective a landing page can be. Athlean-X is a fitness brand started by Jeff Cavaliere, a former Men's Health writer. He promotes his own fitness program - guaranteeing results for his clients in achieving their fitness goals. At a cost of $67 per 3 month program, which includes:
His landing page was created to get his target audience to convert from multiple traffic sources. A large part of his traffic comes from social media such as Youtube, Facebook and Twitter. His YouTube channel has the most views and drives most of his traffic to his website.
Any landing page should provide relevant, focused, and detailed information about a specific product or service. It is most effective if this can be included on a single page - this information should be visible above the fold. According to various web optimization agencies this can increase conversion by 55 percent.
Planning the landing page
The first step in developing a landing page would be to consider the end goal. Ask yourself:
You have to remember that once a browser lands on your page you have to get them to perform an action you want. By understanding what your goals are, you can create the right landing page.
An effective landing page helps convert visitors by providing them with information that answers all their questions and quells their fears. Remember, they may not know your brand, and they want to trust that their problems will be solved through your product or service.
What you would want to do is provide them all the information that they need without having to go anywhere else for answers.....
The 6 Components of a great landing page
There are 6 components that each page must have to increase conversion rates:
1. Headline - The headline is the first line that visitors will read, it offers the biggest opportunity (about 80% of the opportunity) for improvements in conversion rate. Use headlines that clearly state the biggest benefits that your product offers - mentioning exactly what they can get on the landing page.
In the screenshot above, Jeff has listed 3 clear benefits on the headline. His headline is placed beside the video providing a constant reminder to the benefits of his program. What Jeff has done is create an introductory video on the top right which plays automatically as soon as the page loads. In it, he describes his program and has client testimonials about his product. The browser has no choice but to listen and watch.
2. Offer - Your offer is the "call to action" that asks your visitors to act (purchase, sign up, opt-in). Jeff's first call to action in this case is the "Add to Cart" that he has placed below the lead section in the white box.
Remember to place your offer right after each lead as your browser may be convinced enough to buy immediately. Make it easy for them.
3. Lead - The “lead” is one of the best opportunities for capturing the attention of your prospect and helps in increasing your conversion rate. Jeff's video lead tantalizes the prospect to learn more about his program and scroll down towards the supposed training secrets of professional athletes and how his readers can achieve results through his program. However, he has inserted a lead paragraph that includes strong benefits that capture his visitor’s attention and make them want to continue reading on.
4. Benefits - By listing the benefits of your service or product in bullet points is another way to encourage conversions. As many people want to look like professional athletes, Jeff has listed the benefits that cater to his audience's need to train and perform like pro athletes. His readers want to know what secrets pro athletes have that they can emulate and achieve the same results. With that in mind, he has listed his benefits in the order of his service's "value hierarchy" to his target market. In other words, state your product’s strongest benefit first, and its weakest benefit last.
5. Images - As Athlean-X's product niche is related to fitness, images play a key role here. Jeff has designed his site to be very visual, presenting before and after pictures, including using videos and showcasing the bodies of his successful clients. This supports his credibility and having a big impact on his conversion rates.
The best practice is to use images that clearly portray the biggest benefit your product or service offers your customer (in this case the ripped bodies of successful clients - rather than generic imagery like unknown logos and clip art). Studies show that product images usually work best when placed to the left of your product description (or lead paragraph) since it makes it easier to read your copy from left to right. Also, do not forget to put captions under your images. So, add powerful captions and make your images click-able to the order/sign up page if needed.
6. Testimonials - According to a recent study by Stanford University, 46% of online sales are lost when websites do not have the critical elements that build value and credibility with visitors. A major reason browsers indicated why they wouldn't buy from a website was because it lacked credibility. Having a great design and third party credibility (such as VeriSign and BBBOnline certifications) will help convert more of your website's prospects into new customers.
Athlean-X's website has been designed to lead the online visitor to convert. The key features and benefits are easily listed, while allowing the prospect to go over the client testimonials. By placing the emphasis on visual statements and videos, Jeff includes his client testimonials in his story providing a powerful one-two punch to help convert prospects.