Learn How to Optimize Your Content Marketing Agency Investment

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Each year, brands are investing countless hours and thousands if not millions of dollars in marketing to prospects and current customers with content. Often times, internal marketing teams are finding that they need content marketing agency expertise and support outside of their organization.

Working with an agency that specializes in content marketing can provide brands with a more strategic and scalable marketing program that leverages expertise and additional resources that specialize in content. However, agency retainers can be substantial and there isn’t a marketing executive out there that isn’t in search of maximum return on that investment.

How B2B Marketers Can Rise Above Roadblocks with Influencer Marketing

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As the old joke goes, there are two seasons in my home state of Minnesota: Winter and Road Construction. Right now, we are smack in the middle of the latter.

I’m a guy who doesn’t like pony-sized potholes on my streets. So I try to make peace with the endless lane changes, reroutes, and slow-downs. But sometimes it seems like they go out of their way to mess up our routines, doesn’t it?

If you’re a B2B marketer, you may feel similar desperation looking at your marketing channels. It seems like every route between you and your audience is getting blocked or traffic jammed. Organic social visibility is way down: Each Facebook post you make will reach between 2-6% of your followers. A quarter of those who might be interested in your display ads are using ad blockers. Your content can only engage readers if they can find it, and there’s a lot of commodity content clogging the roads.

Storytelling, Emotional Engagement, and Conquering the Status Quo: An Interview with Lee Odden

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“We make decisions emotionally and then justify them logically.” That statement is one of those unattributed, unattributable quotes that pops up everywhere from neuroscience to content marketing. There’s probably a poster of it you can hang on your office door. Probably with a picture of an adorable kitten, or perhaps a whale jumping over a rainbow.

But behind the cliché is an undeniable truth for marketers: Emotions matter. Emotional engagement is crucial for any kind of marketing, from presenting at a conference to writing a long-form blog post. That kind of engagement requires more than just a passing understanding of your audience. It requires genuine empathy.

Learn How to Create a More Effective Influencer Marketing Strategy

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“Who is more influential to you than the people closest that you respect and trust?” – Lee Odden

In the time that I’ve been at TopRank Marketing, I’ve had the opportunity to witness first-hand how influencer marketing can be an incredibly powerful way to build credibility for a brand, and create connections with the right people.

I remember that one of my first experiences with influencer marketing was an interview that I did with Avinash Kaushik (that was of course facilitated by Lee Odden). I was overwhelmed by how humble and happy he was to collaborate with me. Why? Because Lee and the team at TopRank Marketing had found ways to feature him previously and begin building that relationship.

Lee Odden Educates B2B Marketers on SEO for Content Marketing

As content marketing professionals, most of us would consider SEO a highly technical domain. Best leave that to the real nerds, right? Wrong. Google, Bing and all the other search engines have significantly altered their algorithms in the past few years. And these changes continue to favor the highest quality content, often rewarding smart content marketers with first position rankings.

With a bit of SEO sweet sauce, your content marketing sandwich will taste much better to search engines, and users too. Below, I will explore 4 major themes from TopRank Marketing CEO, Lee Odden’s recent Content2Conversion talk on SEO for Content Marketers, including:

  • The State of SEO in 2016
  • Understanding Self-Directed Buyer Behavior
  • How to, “Be The Best Answer”
  • How to Create Smarter Integrated SEO Content for The Web

TopRank Marketing Top Takeaways & Words of Wisdom from MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum #MPB2B

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Last week, the amazing Ann Handley and her team at MarketingProfs put on a phenomenal conference for B2B marketers from all over the country. The information, networking, events and even the swag were all top-notch.

On the first day, Ann set the stage and asked everyone in attendance to find their squad of other marketers at the event, and to take their work seriously, but not to take themselves too seriously. I’m so thankful to have gotten to know some familiar faces a little bit better, and to make some new fast friends in a short amount of time.

This great conference inspired me to share what I thought were the top takeaways and words of wisdom from the speakers for those of you that weren’t able to attend.

If you want B2B Content to be Great, Ask Your Community to Participate! #MPB2B

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The bar for great B2B content marketing is being raised since brands have become publishers and no longer need to rely on traditional media sources for exposure. Unfortunately, budgets and resources don’t always match the required output.

Not many B2B marketers realistically have the budget to hire journalists to compete with industry publications. Even those that do, are still struggling to create engaging content on a consistent basis, improve content effectiveness and provide a variety of content.

The wisdom of your community is a bank rich with useful marketing content and can help scale a B2B content marketing program. In his session at MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum, TopRank CEO Lee Odden made the case for why adding participation to your content can help solve the problems above, and three examples of content co-creation in action.

Is There Really A Secret to MAKING B2B Marketing Magic? #MPB2B

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Every industry experiences evolutions. For some it’s hundreds of years before innovations are made, whereas others change in the blink of an eye. Like a well timed magic trick, one minute you see something, and the next minute it’s completely transformed.

Digital marketing is one of those industries that is always on the cusp of something new and exciting. Personally, that is one of my favorite parts of working at an agency like TopRank Marketing. Each day is an adventure with exciting new things to learn.

Many digital marketers today seem to think that they’ve nailed making marketing magic, but have they really? There are some that in my opinion are constantly making magic (Michael Brenner, Ann Handley and Lee Odden to name a few), while the vast majority are just trying to keep up.

Incorporate Participation Marketing for More Scalable Content Marketing – Lee Odden #CMWorld

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“The best should win, but creating the best is a challenge.” – Lee Odden

Yesterday at Content Marketing World, TopRank Marketing CEO Lee Odden delighted a packed room of marketers by providing inspiring and actionable advice on how to successfully approach participation marketing. Lee assured marketers that if they wanted to produce quality and scalable content, without having to scale marketing budgets, this was the place to be.

So, how can we get some relief from all of the hard work it takes to create a truly impactful participation marketing program?

Among the many things covered in his session were:

  • A methodical approach for deconstructing and repurposing marketing to make it more useful.
  • How to integrate influencers, social and SEO into your content plan.

The Future of Content Marketing: Integration, Optimization and Participation

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In 2015 the world celebrated the 126th birthday of Paris’ iconic Eiffel Tower. This important piece of history is comprised of over 18,000 individual pieces and was built by nearly 300 people participating in the project.

Developing content for content marketing programs can be approached with a similarly participative framework and in a way that satisfies some marketers’ top needs. According to Altimeter Group, 60% of surveyed marketers said that content creation was a top need while 53% named distribution. That means it’s time for organizations to begin looking outside of their marketing teams for content co-creation partners and to improve content promotion at the same time.

But how does an optimized, socialized and co-created content program work?

25 Inspiring & Actionable Content Marketing Tips For (Almost) Any Situation

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The dreaded content marketing rut, we’ve all been there. Everyone from copywriter to CMO has experienced content marketing fatigue at one point or another. Sometimes it feels like no matter how hard you try you can’t quite seem to:

  • Create enough content
  • Get the engagement you need
  • Find interesting ways to innovate

Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Recent research has found that, 70% of B2B marketers are creating more content than they were a year ago and 54% find producing engaging content to be a challenge.

If only there were a list of tips that you could reference from time to time when you need a content marketing pick-me-up.

Well, look at what we have here! Keep this list of 25 content marketing tips handy for whenever the need strikes.

Where to Find Useful Signal in the Noise of Content and Digital Marketing Events

content marketing signalIn the Digital Marketing and PR world, success requires a continuous effort to stay sharp and on top of what’s working and what is not. Information overload from social media has brought an exponential increase in noise, causing many marketing and PO pros to “overdose” on digital content or shut it out altogether.

I like to think that we’ve done our best to provide you with a nice, clear signal here on TopRank’s Online Marketing Blog and at industry events.

Speaking of events, we’re providing several options for a clear digital marketing and PR signal across 11 different conferences over the next few months. Topics include:

  • Digital & Integrated Marketing
  • Personal Branding With Content & Social Media
  • B2B Content Marketing & Blogging
  • Participation & Influencer Marketing
  • Modular Content Planning & Repurposing