Content Marketing

B2B Content Marketing Playbook: Tips to Prepare You for the Big Content Game

B2B-CONTENT-PLAYBOOK

The 2015 B2B Marketing Report from Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs sheds a pretty bright light on the true state of B2B content marketing. While 86% of B2B marketers are using content marketing, only 8% rate their content marketing efforts as “very effective”. It’s not so different than teams participating in sports like football. Sure, everyone is playing, but who is actually really good at it?

Fundamental blocking and tackling are key for a winning football game. The same can be said for implementing a successful B2B content marketing program: mastery of the fundamentals is essential. With B2B content creation in particular, marketers must be prepared for everything from understanding the voice of the customer to developing the right mix of content assets.

Good Content Vs. Good Enough Content: A Fight for Sore Eyes with Ann Handley

Ann Handley Authority Rainmaker 2015

“Do you have any mustard?”

“Give me the mustard.”

“Pardon me: Do you have any Grey Poupon?”

These three statements mean the same thing, but each is a unique way of asking for the desired item. Often, it’s not what you say, but how you say it.

In her session at Authority Rainmaker 2015, Ann Handley shared the belief that brand voice is key to creating good content marketing that will set you apart.

There is this idea that as quantity of content increases, quality takes a nose dive. So how do you maintain or increase quality of content while increasing quantity?

It starts with being really good at the basics, like brand voice.

Not More Content…Ridiculously Better Content

The New Era of Sales and Content Marketing – Daniel Pink Keynote

Dan Pink Keynote

This week’s forecast calls for heavy rain. Not from the sky, but from the stage at Authority Rainmaker 2015, hosted by CopyBlogger. The conference got off to a bang with an electrifying keynote from Daniel Pink, TV show host, keynote speaker and author of To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others.

According to Dan, the buying experience has changed more in the last ten years than in the previous 100, due in large part to the unprecedented access to information that the average consumer has today. However, many companies’ sales processes have yet to catch up to the meteoric changes that the internet has brought to the marketplace

The Art of Repurposing Content – 5 Creative Tips for Content Marketers

Painting by Boyan Dimitrov via Shutterstock

Many companies chasing the “brand publisher” approach to content are running out of steam and troubled by their inability to tie content to marketing ROI.

The most recent B2B content marketing study from from CMI and MarketingProfs shows the biggest challenge with content marketing is measurement (51%) followed by not being able to produce engaging (50%), consistent (44%), or a variety of content (40%).

At the same time, there are numerous B2B content marketing case studies here, here and here of companies succeeding with content marketing programs.

But let’s face it: Even with many success stories (including ours and those of our clients) B2C and B2B Content Marketers alike are challenged. Creating a variety of engaging content on a consistent basis is the bane of many marketing managers world-wide.

Content Marketing Rescue: 4 Tips for Saving Your Brand’s Content Marketing Strategy

TR CM Rescue 2

Sometimes it takes an outsider’s perspective to give us the reality check we need when it comes Content Marketing strategy.

Popular shows such as Bar Rescue, Restaurant Impossible and Kitchen Nightmares feature industry experts that come into a business, determine the issues hindering success and help the business turn it all around.

When you boil it down, brand-side Content Marketers are facing many of the same issues as these failing bars and restaurants. It often doesn’t matter if you’re a team of one or twenty, sometimes it’s time to bring in the experts. Budget, time and resources can often hinder a brand’s ability to call in for the big guns. Luckily, we’re here to help give some tough love and sound advice for brand marketers looking to revive their Content Marketing strategy. Of the many things you need to keep in mind, here are four high level priorities.

Book Review & Interview: Social Content Marketing for Entrepreneurs by Dr. Jim Barry

Social Content Marketing Book Review

How many times have you wished that someone would create a textbook filled with why’s and how to’s of digital marketing? If you’re like me, the answer to that is “Too many times to count!”.

Let’s face it, the work that we do and how we do it evolves so quickly it can be hard to keep up. Unfortunately, that leaves room for us to get swept up in “shiny object syndrome” and lose sight of what is really important; creating quality content that resonates with your audience and helps solve a business problem.

Dr. Jim Barry’s new book, “Social Content Marketing for Entrepreneurs” helps marketers realign their focus to some of the most impactful inbound marketing strategies.

4 Essential Tips for Content Marketers to Survive Mobilegeddon, Google’s Mobile Friendly Update

Accessing content on mobile device

Internet users are spending more time than ever on their smartphones, which means Content Marketers must adjust their strategies to create a better user experience for those drawn to the small screen.

The release of Google’s new mobile-friendly update, aka “mobilegeddon”, has drawn a firestorm of attention to the need for improving website responsiveness and user experience on mobile devices.

There’s a good reason for this: A recent study by ComScore and Millennial Media found that approximately 56% of digital content is now consumed via smartphones. Knowing that a large portion of your audience likely searches, consumes and interacts with content on their mobile device should inform how you execute on your Content Marketing initiatives.

The good news is, despite the apocalyptic headlines on many blogs, Google has stated that the new mobile-friendly update only affects:

Content vs. Advertising – Is There Really A Debate?

content marketing advertising

Recording last night’s BeanCast, Altruism or Consumerism, hosted by the talented Bob Knorpp brought up the topic of Content Marketing and whether paid placement of content is just advertising – among many other topics from Dove to Amazon Dash.

This content vs. ad question was inspired by commentary from Mitch Joel in his post, Your Content Is Kidding No One where he states, “if you have to pay to have it placed, it’s not content. It’s an ad.”

While I agree with what Mitch says in the post in terms of brands failing to create engaging, share-worthy and conversation-starting content, I’m not on board with the pay to play statement.

Social Media Marketing World 2015 – What We’re Looking Forward to Most

SMMW15

by Debbie Friez & Brooke Furry of TopRank Online Marketing

One of the best ways to succeed in social media marketing is to not be afraid to test and fail. The landscape is ever changing, and as marketers, we need to adapt quickly and learn from others. Social Media Marketing World (#SMMW15) this week in San Diego is just the type of conference that can provide marketers this opportunity.

If you’re not able to attend, don’t worry. Brooke Furry and I will be attending #SMMW15 in order to learn, network and create content (live blog) many of the most important presentations. We’re committed to providing you with social media marketing insights and highlights to inspire you to succeed.

How to Make Free Stock Images Work for Content Marketing

stock images, success, content marketing

Visual content is king, but what happens if you don’t have a massive library of brand images to use for your online content? Do you try a simple Google image search and grab something that might be approved for commercial use? Or, do you simply go image-less and rely on your copy to carry the weight?

If you’re pillaging images from Google’s regular search, stop right now. Google might tell you that it’s approved for commercial use, but there are other resources that provide greater assurances (and more relief for your legal team).

In this post I’ll show you where to find (truly) free stock images, and how to use those images for the best visual impact on your content marketing.

Video Content Marketing: Pros, Cons, Examples and Best Practices

Video for Content Marketing (1)

For many B2B marketers video content is the biggest step in a content marketing plan, the one thing that is tackled last because it takes more resources to produce. That mode of thinking is changing, however, as more marketers lean on video content as an effective way to cut through the crowded content marketing landscape. In a recent CMI / Marketing Profs study, 76% of B2B marketers said that they plan to use video as a content marketing tactic in 2015.

Creating video and hosting it on your company site or sending it out on social media is a way to show that your brand is video and technologically savvy but don’t just produce video for the sake of saying you’ve done it. Video has to be done right to be effective. This post will explore the pros and cons of video as a content marketing tactic and will offer examples and best practices that digital marketers can look to for support in their own video content marketing.

Content and SEO Beyond Marketing – Optimized Digital Communications

optimized digital communications

Content is the reason search began in the first place.

In the days before Google, directories, lists and forums were the way to discover new content on the fast-growing world wide web.

During those early days, the web was as much about the experience of discovery, aka “surfing”, as it was about finding specific answers.

Answers to what? Many marketers would have you believe the only content that exists is the information created in support of buyers to discover, consume and transact.

But there’s far more to the web than demand generation and advertising. Content is created by companies to serve a variety of business functions from customer service to corporate social responsibility to talent acquisition.