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Archive for the ‘Inbound Marketing’ Category

Inbound Marketing: Content is everything in search and social

November 13th, 2012
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This week’s MarketingSherpa Book Giveaway features Search and Social: The Definitive Guide to Real-Time Content Marketing by Rob Garner, VP of Strategy, iCrossing (a Hearst company).

This book is based on six years of columns for MediaPost Search Insider and Social Insider, along with Rob’s speaking engagements, blog posts and experience as a marketing practitioner. The depth of this experience and knowledge really shows in the detailed, actionable information Rob provides readers.

I had the chance to hear Rob speak on this material at a recent Dallas/Fort Worth Search Engine Marketing Association meeting, and later got the opportunity to pick his brain a little on search, social and content marketing.

Here is the result of that conversation …

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Inbound Marketing: 5 tips for cultivating user generated content

October 11th, 2012
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Despite the fact that we have never met them, and usually have no clue as to their qualifications, consumers put increasingly greater stock in the word of their fellow consumer.

“[User generated content] is just something that has evolved, but in many ways we have always had it,” said Kaci Bower, author of the MarketingSherpa Inbound Marketing Handbook citing mass reviews and word of mouth.

“Now, with the advent of social media, it is just exploding. Now consumers and brands actually have a place to share their opinions, thoughts and ideas,” said Bower. “It actually provides a platform for user-generated content to not only be created, but also shared quite easily.”

The puzzle is in learning how to harness its power.

Social media provides a more intimate cyber setting than any other format, and because of that fosters feedback that is more conversational and for better or worse, people don’t hold back. It gives marketers insight into what their consumers are really concerned about, or happy with.

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Independently Owned and Operated

August 23rd, 2012
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One of the prizes of winning the MarketingSherpa Reader’s Choice Awards is the chance for a guest post here on the MarketingSherpa blog. Today’s post is from gnome Flash blogger Emily Taylor. Please note, at gnome Flash, they use toys to represent themselves instead of the traditional bio picture.

It is too easy for a brand to lose its artisanal flare as it grows into a larger organization or corporation. The American spirit purveyor, Jack Daniel’s, has made a commitment to taking an equally homegrown approach to their campaigns. They have a series of videos that document the making of promotional posters by local artists that harken the Americana of the brand.

 

   
Jack Daniel’s meets The Signpainter from Travis Robertson on Vimeo.
 

 

Jack Daniel’s meets Jon Contino from Travis Robertson on Vimeo.
 

 

Jack Daniel’s meets Helms Workshop from Travis Robertson on Vimeo.
 

Related Resources:

much ado (via gnome Flash)

brand recognition (via gnome Flash)

Kodak’s Award-winning Online Launch Campaign (Great Creative on a Tight Budget)

How Annies Homegrown Uses the Web to Generate Consumer Passion for Boxes of Macaroni

Content Marketing: 3 tips for how to get started

August 17th, 2012
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At Optimization Summit 2012, Michael Lykke Aagaard, Online Copywriter / Landing Page Fanatic, Contentverve, pulled me aside for an interview about content marketing. Below is an excerpt where we discuss three tips for getting started …

 

 

Let me (I hope) exceed your expectations in this blog post by adding three more tips for how to get started, helping you, in this case, to overcome common objections you might receive in trying to launch or expand content marketing in your organization …

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Watching Concrete: YouTube channel saves time, drives revenue for Mid Atlantic Concrete Equipment

July 27th, 2012
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If you attend an industry event with Owen Blevins, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Mid Atlantic Concrete Equipment, you better expect to hear the refrain, “Hey, Cretehead!”

It’s not an insult, just evidence that people are buying what Blevins is selling. As the founder and host of Concrete Answers, “the Internet’s most passionate show about concrete plants and equipment,” Blevins is becoming a concrete-industry celebrity, and, of course, he kicks off each episode with a resounding, “Heeey, Creteheads!”

Every other week, he introduces machinery and processes in direct response to the questions he receives from customers via his company’s website, events and sales meetings.

Even though the show is only about two years old, it has received more than 85,000 views.

“It’s not a bulldog on a skateboard, but we have a niche market. Our goal is to inform, educate and offer a little bit of entertainment. If you’re having trouble sleeping at night, be sure to watch,” he laughs. “It’s highly technical.”

 

Hundreds of hours of work = Hundreds of thousands in sales

Every minute of the final product represents an hour of work – planning, shooting, editing and posting. However, Blevins says the hundreds of hours devoted to Concrete Answers are well worth the investment.

“We typically know exactly what brought our customers to us,” says Blevins. “This information allows us to justify expense, because there’s a lot of time, effort and energy that goes into the channel. It’s definitely been worth it; otherwise, we wouldn’t do it. I won’t reveal exact ROI, but I can tell you the show has ultimately resulted in hundreds of thousands of dollars in equipment sales.”

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Marketing Research in Action: Content marketing data

May 24th, 2012
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On the latest episode of Marketing Research in Action, I discuss research about content marketing from MarketingSherpa’s 2012 Search Marketing Benchmark Report – SEO Edition (free excerpt at that link), with Ninan Chacko, Global Chief Executive Officer, PR Newswire

 

 

Here’s a look at what Ninan and I discussed. Feel free to use these links to jump straight to that point in the video.

1:06 – Webpages

1:38 – Social media (other than blogs)

2:28 – Press releases

4:34 – How a press release should look in 2012

6:35 – Using a press release to promote other content marketing channels

8:22 – The benefit of cross-media integration

 

And here is a closer look at that data from the SEO Benchmark Report …

 Content marketing products, by organization size

 

Related Resources

Brand TV: Using Video to Engage Audiences (via PR Newswire)

Overall Content Marketing Strategy Leads to 2,000% Lift in Blog Traffic, 40% Boost in Revenue

Public Relations: Getting corporate data out of subject matter experts heads and into quarterly trend reports increased media coverage 261%

Combining Email, Search, Social and PR for a Content Marketing Campaign: 6 Tactics to Generate Surge in Visitor Traffic

MarketingSherpa’s 2012 Search Marketing Benchmark Report – SEO Edition

Content Marketing: How scrapers impact your content strategy

May 22nd, 2012
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Content marketing is an important strategy for both consumer and B2B marketers, and it’s a major component of inbound and email marketing as well.

One issue that probably receives less attention than deserved is content scraping. This is a particular problem with easily digested material such as blog posts, whitepapers and articles.

Less than scrupulous website owners will go to your site, scrape your content and repost your work to their website.

This hurts your content marketing strategy in two major ways: one, it dilutes your brand awareness because some people will find your content on someone else’s website; and two, it essentially confuses search engines with the duplicate content and negatively affects your SEO.

To find out more about content scraping, and learn some tricks to combat the practice, I spoke with Rami Essaid, co-founder and CEO of Distil, a company that protects websites against unauthorized scraping.

As you might guess, this topic is near and dear to Rami’s heart, and he provides insight into how it happens and what you can do proactively to protect your content.

 

MarketingSherpa:  Tell me why content marketers should be aware of, and concerned about, content scraping.

Rami Essaid:  Marketing has shifted toward content marketing as the medium to drive traffic to websites. The reason it’s so powerful is because it provides valuable information to the end user, and allows marketers to brand within the content along with sending out the company’s message.

By having that content diluted and copied around the world, you are not able to capitalize on one hundred percent of the market reading your content.

When you think about any time you put something out there and it gets copied, scraped and duplicated, people are consuming it all around the world, but they are not consuming it from you, and you are losing the effectiveness of all of that hard work that you put into that content marketing.

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Social Media Companies: 3 non-obvious ways social media will impact big companies

September 6th, 2011
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In many (perhaps most) big companies, we are past the point of debating why we should do social media and more often wondering how we can do social media well.

That’s the good news.

The bad news is that many organizations are making it much more about the media than it is about the social, using traditional incentives and rote communications crumbs cast off from dusty email newsletters.

Smart companies recognize that social media is about a lot more than a Facebook page and that understanding how to BE social is the key to success , more so than worrying how to DO social.

The companies committed to baking sociability into all corners of the operation (what we often call “social business design” these days) will find social media providing three big, non-obvious impacts in the coming years:

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Headbanging with HubSpot, social networking with Salesforce

September 1st, 2011
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This week, I’m taking in the spectacle that is Dreamforce ’11, courtesy of HubSpot. And interestingly enough, I’m finding myself surrounded by unicorns.

At the keynote speech Wednesday morning, Salesforce.com chairman and CEO, Marc Benioff, announced there were 45,000 registered attendees at this San Francisco event.

Here’s an overview of what I’ve seen and done over the first couple of days at Dreamforce … Read more…

Content Marketing: Focus on value, not length

August 26th, 2011
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Stanley tape measure

The other day I received a question about the desired length of a speaker submission for Email Summit 2012 in Las Vegas

I noticed that the following questions do not include a word count min. or max. amount:

What can email marketers learn from your content?
Describe the session you would like to present (or organize).

Seeing as this is a major component of the application, is there a required or recommended word length for each?

This is a question I get often about all types of content. How long should my blog post be? How long should my article be?

And the reason we didn’t put a word count on the speaker submission form, is because … Read more…