When I think of really powerful viral videos, I sometimes feel as though I've passed through the looking glass into a dreamlike world of imagination and fun. In the wake of 2012, I've thought a lot about what makes content go viral, and I've come to the following conclusion: if you build something for the sole purpose of going viral, it probably won't.
Read this article: Viral Video: The Catch-22 of Content Marketing
Grow your customer base and increase customer loyalty with content marketing-- the process of building a relationship with readers by giving your business’s website and blog fresh, relevant content tailored to your industry niche. That new content makes readers come back to your site for information, building trust among the site’s visitors. Once trust is established, it’s easier for your company to convert the site visitors into actual customers.
Google's spam-fighting algorithms have made it harder than ever for content marketers to use cost-effective promotion strategies. Inexpensive techniques are easier to execute and abuse, which makes them more susceptible to being penalized in future Google updates; harder strategies, meanwhile, are less scalable and profitable. When balancing the fine line between using low-cost, low-value promoting strategies that work for now and long-term, non-scalable solutions, here are five trends to keep in mind when developing your 2013 content marketing strategy.
To many content marketers, “blog” is a 4-letter word. Its very utterance is enough to have us shaking at our keyboards staring at the blank screen like a doomed deer staring down a pair of headlights.
But blogging is an essential content marketing activity. It gives brands the opportunity to showcase their personality and a way to converse with their demographic. Posting content regularly is also great for SEO, which creates more opportunities for the brand to make new friends and customers (lead generation, anyone?). Therefore, the onus is on content marketers to make their blog a success. How do we do that?
An editorial calendar can be a content marketer's best friend. When created and implemented properly, it facilitates blog post creation and management (assigning, scheduling, and posting). Most importantly, it’s a web content writing tool that allows you to see how well, or how poorly, your company’s content aligns with the brand. A disconnect between the brand and messaging could mean wasted money. If the two are one and the same, you could be boasting a really strong quarter. An editorial calendar is not just an organizational tool. It can make, or break, the bank.
However, editorial calendars--because of the time it can take to make them--can be a content marketers worst enemy. But before you swear off editorial calendars forever, let’s discuss the pros and cons of having them around:
Editorial Calendar Pros:
- Aligned and consistent messaging--The titles and topics are all in one place so it’s easier to see when one doesn’t jive with the brand’s message or demographic.
- Time saver--A shared document can save you time and headaches when it comes time to assign posts.
- Capitalize on search trends and timely events--Whether it’s a holiday or a current event that’s trending, it’s easier to see, then act, on a pattern when the data is in one place
Editorial Calendar Cons:
- A significant time investment--It may not seem like it at the time (because you’re having to create and plan many titles instead of one), but you truly are saving a lot of minutes and lessening the pressure that’s on you to produce quality content.
- Difficult to get buy-in from your team--Blogging is a job and not everything about a job is fun. It’s understandable when all you hear are crickets when you ask for ideas. Cut back on the push back by reminding them of the benefits of a good blog and what blogging can do for their own personal brand.
“Do you have an editorial calendar?” is usually the first question I ask clients because it indicates how serious they are about content marketing. An editorial calendar categorizes marketing campaigns into the major leagues or triple A. Check below for tools that can make web content writing easier for you and your team and let us know if you're using one that has worked well for you.
Editorial Calendar Tools that Could Make Your Life Easier:
- Wordpress Editorial Calendar Plugin
- EdCals by Cision Point
- Google Docs and Excel
Read this article: Editorial Calendar: Time Saver or Time Waster??
If missed Work It! from last week, Step 1 to revitalizing your website content is to grab some analytics--get the data that tells you what is working on your website and what needs tweaking. Step 2 is to evaluate the tone and feel of your website. And now...the moment you have all been waiting for...
Step 3: Explore New Opportunities
Read this article: Work It! with Fresh Website Copy Part II--Explore New Opportunities
Recently, I was talking content strategy with a long-time Volacci client and he asked me to take a look at the content on his website. He knew that when you’ve had a website for awhile, it’s easy to not really see what it looks like anymore or be able to objectively evaluate it like a prospective customer would. I thought this was a fantastic idea. (Smart guy!)
Read this article: Work It! with Fresh Website Copy
Once you have conducted a content inventory/audit, and performed a content gap analysis, you should know exactly what content you have and what you need to create. The next step is to define where that needed content will come from.
Read this article: Content Strategy 101: The Five Types of Source Content for Your Website
Thank you for joining me for Part Two of my Content Strategy Process blog post. Last week I discussed The Content Strategy Process - Phases I-II, where we reviewed a few definitions of “content strategy” and walked through an overview of the first two phases of a typical content strategy project.