Lane Ellis

How to Boost Your Content Marketing Efforts By Planning Ahead

Lane Ellis on Sep 25th, 2018     Content Marketing

Collective Wisdom Series Part 1 Planning Ahead Chess Image

They say two heads are better than one, but we say the more the merrier — especially when it comes to bringing you actionable tips and insights to fuel your digital marketing efforts.

That’s why we’re proud to announce our “Collective Wisdom” series. Throughout the series, we’ll be bringing you insights, tips, and perspectives from some of the top marketing minds to help guide your content marketing strategy. With each entry, you’ll quickly learn proven methods, taking you from the very beginning of the content planning cycle to post-publication amplification and optimization.

Where should we start? At the beginning, of course.

In this piece, we explore the crucial planning stage that essential for content marketing success.

Lee Odden

Enterprise B2B Influencer Marketing Interview: Dr Konstanze Alex, Dell

Lee Odden on Sep 24th, 2018     Influencer Marketing

Influencer Marketing Interview With Konstanze Alex

Within the world of B2B influencer marketing, there are a handful of brand experts who have been charting a course within large enterprise organizations for the rest of us to follow. One of those pathfinders is Dr. Konstanze Alex (@konstanze), Head of Corporate Influencer Relations at Dell.

My first experience with Konnie was several years ago when TopRank Marketing was working with Dell to develop relationships with IT influencers as part of an online publication initiative. Since then, we’ve worked with Dell to help develop an influencer marketing playbook, support influencer engagement at events and through content, but her relationship focus on working with influencers has stuck with me through it all.

Lane Ellis

Digital Marketing News: Haptic Marketing, Twitter’s Ranked Feeds, B2B’s ABM Challenges, & YouTube’s Vertical Video Ads

Lane Ellis on Sep 21st, 2018     Online Marketing News

2018 September 21 News Image

The Power of Micro-Influencers [Infographic]
A look at the benefits of working with highly-targeted audiences, and how micro-influencers can work to build brand awareness and drive sales. MarketingProfs

Twitter will soon let you switch between chronological and ranked feeds
Twitter announced that it will change how its feed works, with a forthcoming update allowing users to switch between ranked and chronological settings, offering a new layer of control. The Verge

Despite buzz, only one-third of B2B businesses are committed to ABM, report says
A newly-rleased Dun & Bradstreet B2B marketing data report shows limited account-based marketing implementation, and a few other surprises. Marketing Land

Four Effective Techniques for Working With B2B Influencers
Finding the right influencers and getting their attention can be a challenge. MarketingProfs Tom Whatley examines the situation and how to overcome many obstacles. MarketingProfs

Caitlin Burgess

Interactive Content Marketing: Why B2B Marketers Should Take Their Content from Boring to Bold

Caitlin Burgess on Sep 20th, 2018     Content Marketing, Interactive Marketing

Why B2B Marketers Should Consider Interactive Content

Show of hands, B2B marketers: How many of you know which Hogwarts house you belong in? Or which Disney princess best represents your personality and relationship ambitions?

via GIPHY

Don’t be shy. I’m a Gryffindor wizard through and through—and apparently, I’m more of a Jasmine than an Ariel. And I know all this thanks to the rise of interactive content.

From quirky quizzes to ROI calculators to guided eBooks, interactive content is a rising content marketing star. BuzzFeed is perhaps the most prolific example, creating dozens of quizzes each week that are making their way into social feeds and search results. (And almost all users reportedly finish them).

But why should B2B marketers consider adding interactive content to their mix?

Anne Leuman

Why Marketers Are Disenchanted with SEO

Anne Leuman on Sep 19th, 2018     Content Marketing, SEO

Why Marketers Are Turning Away from SEO

Just over two decades ago, search engine optimization (SEO) burst onto the internet scene and kicked the digital marketing doors wide open. Today, marketers consider SEO an effective and required part of their digital marketing mix — well, some of us at least.

Many thought leaders, marketers, and brands have speculated that SEO is dead, but we’d argue that it most certainly isn’t. Rather, it’s being reborn. However, it appears to be fading as a core digital and content marketing strategy.

Why? There’s no one answer. Instead, multiple challenges and frustrations have fused to create disenchantment with the practice.

Lee Odden

Invisible Content Syndrome and the Content Promotion Tactics to Cure It

Lee Odden on Sep 18th, 2018     Content Marketing

Invisible Content Syndrome

Eyes fixed on his computer monitor, Jack felt perspiration form on his forehead as he waited in anticipation for the flood of visitors to the new campaign he and his team just launched.

Anticipation turned to nervousness as he looked around the room and asked, “Who’s promoting this content?”

All Jack got in return were blank stares and a bad case of Invisible Content Syndrome.

According to research by the Content Marketing Institute, 83% of B2B marketers use social networks for traffic, making it the most preferred tactic. At the same time, research from BuzzSumo reports that social sharing has dropped by 50% since 2015. With only 23% of CMOs feeling they are producing the right content and delivering it at the right time and format, lack of visibility is a disease content marketing is suffering across the industry.

Caitlin Burgess

How Can Marketers Create Stronger Customer Bonds? Focus on Convenience, According to Shep Hyken

Caitlin Burgess on Sep 17th, 2018     Digital Marketing, Interviews

Shep Hyken on Convenience Marketing

Savvy digital marketers have their ears to the ground and eyes to the sky, striving to be on the cutting edge of the latest and greatest trends, tactics, strategies, and tools. After all, change comes hard and fast in this industry—especially when it comes to evolving buyer demands and expectations.

However, innovation doesn’t have to be net-new. To put a slight spin on a classic line, everything old can be new again. And that’s where convenience as a strategic digital marketing tool.

Convenience has been a core customer service principle for decades. And more often than not, convenience is a defining characteristic of customer experience and the brand as a whole. Think about what 7-Eleven did for weary travelers or time-crunched professionals. Think about what Amazon first did for avid, deal-seeking readers—and what they’re doing now for folks from all walks of life.

Lane Ellis

Digital Marketing News: Facebook’s Ad & Metric Changes, Pinterest Tops 250M Users, Google’s URL Plans, & LinkedIn’s Dynamic Ads

Lane Ellis on Sep 14th, 2018     Online Marketing News

2018 September 14 LinkedIn News Image

LinkedIn brings Dynamic Ads into Campaign Manager platform
LinkedIn has added Dynamic Ads into its Campaign Manager platform. Templates, auto-translation, and data-mapping are among the new additions to an expanded LinkedIn (client) ad management tool. MarketingLand

Americans are changing their relationship with Facebook
A new survey from the Pew Research Center shows that 42 percent of Facebook users having taken a break from the site during the past year, one of several findings of interest to digital marketers. Pew Research Center

Google Wants to Kill the URL
Google and other tech firms are grappling with oftentimes unwieldy and increasingly dangerous URLs. Google’s Chrome browers is looking to at least alter how URLs are displayed, a move that could change how digital marketers incorporate them. Wired

Alexis Hall

Use It or Lose It: 8 Ways to Make the Most of Your Digital Marketing Budget Surplus

Alexis Hall on Sep 13th, 2018     Content Marketing, Digital Marketing

How to Make the Most of Your Marketing Budget

For all marketing leaders, effectively managing your digital marketing budget is a delicate balancing act. Spend too much too early, and you’re running ultra-lean for the balance of the year and risk falling short of your goals. Spend too little, and you’ll likely lose those dollars at year’s end—and perhaps put yourself in a position to see cuts next year if your frugalness is taken out of context.

In our experience, we often see organizations slow to spend the first nine months of the year and eager to spend in the final quarter. So, if you’ll soon find yourself in the “use it or lose it” position, absolutely use it—but be thoughtful.

Ashley Zeckman

Game On: How to Power-Up Your Content Marketing Game with Insights From #CMWorld

Ashley Zeckman on Sep 12th, 2018     Content Marketing, Content Marketing World, Influencer Marketing

Up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right.

If you’re a classic gamer, you’ll recognize the Konami Code used in popular games as a way to uncover gaming cheats or special effects. And if you attended Content Marketing World last week, you’ll recognize that sequence from trying to find your way through Huntington Convention Center to find your speaker sessions.

And even if you’re not a gamer and weren’t able to attend the conference this year, you’re in luck. The team at TopRank Marketing has compiled some top tips for powering up your event attendance and our coverage of stellar content marketing sessions from the biggest content marketing conference of the year.

Jane Bartel

Ashley Zeckman Dispels B2B Influencer Marketing Lies at CMWorld

Jane Bartel on Sep 12th, 2018     Content Marketing, Content Marketing World, Influencer Marketing

Ashley Zeckman at CMWorld

It’s no wonder that Ashley Zeckman, Digital Strategy Director at TopRank Marketing, drew a crowd last week at Content Marketing World: she promised to debunk the prevalent myth that influencer marketing is best suited for B2C brands.

Content marketers, just like everybody else, see loads of influencers promoting consumer brands. So, why can’t some of us get over the notion that involving influencers in B2B campaigns isn’t a good fit?

Because, as Zeckman puts it, content marketing is difficult. As it stands today, only 50% of marketers believe they’re achieving their marketing goals (Smart Insights). In addition, 75% of blog posts get fewer than 10 social shares, and get zero links from other domains (Buzzsumo & Moz). What’s worse, is that 70% of marketers lack a consistent or integrated content strategy (Altimeter).

Nick Nelson

LinkedIn’s Megan Golden on Building a Blockbuster Content Marketing Strategy

Nick Nelson on Sep 11th, 2018     Content Marketing, Content Marketing World

LinkedIn's Megan Golden at Content Marketing World

“The good news about being a marketer in 2018 is that we have dozens and dozens of channels to share our marketing story,” Megan Golden, group manager of LinkedIn’s* global content and social media marketing, said in the opening of her session at Content Marketing World last Thursday.

“The bad news about being a marketer in 2018 is that we have dozens and dozens of channels to share our marketing story,” she added.

It’s true. We’re inundated with options for trying to reach our audiences these days, making it a challenge to narrow focus and find the right mix. But it’s safe to say that if you work in B2B, LinkedIn has to be in that mix. Hosting more than half a billion professionals, and boasting unparalleled targeting capabilities, the platform is tremendously powerful for those who know how to use it.