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Content Marketing

Talking Turkey: Content Marketing with Jasmine Holmes

on September 8 in Content Marketing | 0 comments

Ever wondered why we love Thanksgiving so much? It has to be the leftovers. Let’s face it, on any other day, a turkey sandwich is nothing to get excited about. But the day after Thanksgiving, it’s sublime.Like Thanksgiving turkey, content is more delicious when served in small portions the next day. Traditionally when creating content, we start with smaller pieces (a blog post or newsletter) that we hope to someday string into something larger (an e-book or white paper). It’s a little like throwing left overs into a pot hoping they make a stew. Sometimes it comes together and sometimes you end up ordering pizza.Treat your content like a Thanksgiving turkey instead. Create the larger piece first hand, then carve it into smaller, bite sized pieces. I’m amazed how much content can be generated from a short e-book—blog posts, newsletter articles and infographics—all of which can be broken into smaller pieces and shared on social media. –Jasmine Holmes, 910 West Check out the latest news from our friends at 910 West. Related posts from TDZ: How to Create Content Out of Thin Air Do You Need Technology (aka Marketing Automation) for Content Marketing? Reasons You Might Start with Content Marketing vs. Social Media...

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Reasons You Might Start with Content Marketing vs. Social Media

on June 18 in B-to-B, Content Marketing | 0 comments

If you’re a microbusiness owner–and especially in the consulting field–you might feel pressure to jump on the social media bandwagon. (Unless you did years ago and are now regretting it!) Content marketing (as opposed to social media) may be on your radar, but you’re not sure you need it or where to begin. Or maybe you haven’t heard of the term “content marketing” before. (If so, this post from Content Marketing Institute (CMI) from 2012 is useful.) In any of these scenarios, taking a larger, more strategic view of your online (and offline) marketing is always a good idea. And according to CMI, “successful social media starts with solid content marketing processes.” Here are a few specific reasons you might want to start with content marketing: You have existing “content” that can be re-purposed or re-packaged but you’re not sure how. The “news” on your website isn’t new . . . and you have no way to attract and retain website visitors. (Public relations may also be part of the solution, but well-orchestrated with lead capture efforts.) You haven’t invested in social media channels yet and you want to be strategic and deliberate about what you do–knowing that maintaining a consistent brand is important. You understand the importance of thought leadership and you have heavy-hitters on your team, but not all of them will want to be “tweeting” and “Facebooking”–and that may not make sense for your company anyway. You need to create a company presence online–beyond just your personal gravitas–which means achieving the right balance of voice unification (based on your brand and culture) and individual style plus division of labor. Your website isn’t converting leads and/or you are not measuring effectiveness. Without a clear plan to capture leads that’s well-executed on your website, all the social media in the world won’t help. You will increase traffic with social media, but not necessarily business. Did you start with content marketing? If so, why? What did we miss? Are you considering it? Weigh in...

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Do You Need Technology for Content Marketing?

on June 15 in Content Marketing, Small Business | 0 comments

In this post, we address whether you–as a small business owner–need technology for content marketing. Technology here refers to marketing automation software or a platform. You may or may not need a big technology investment to support your content efforts.  This is one of our Business Breakdown posts. We break down a marketing headline, explaining who it’s intended for and what it means to you as a U.S.-based small business owner, microbusiness owner, SOHO, or sole proprietor. The Source “How Tech Can Help B2Bs Elevate Content Efficiency” from The Details about Technology for Content Marketing “Nearly eight in 10 B2B marketing professionals worldwide used website analytics tools, the top response, and about three-quarters leveraged No. 2 marketing automation solutions. In comparison, just over three in 10 used collaboration or project management platforms to coordinate and track such efforts.” (Q2 2015 polling by Starfleet Media) The Audience and Participants For international marketers in B2B companies. We don’t know how many companies participated in the studies. We don’t know the sizes of the companies surveyed, either. The Purpose To show how inefficient content marketing can be. To show the gap in technology use. Project management software or a content-marketing platform, for example. The conclusion is the ineffiency is caused by the lack of tools or too many tools. The solution for B2B marketers is technology for content marketing–and more specifically a platform. What You Need to Know As a small business owner, microbusiness owner, SOHO, or sole proprietor, know this:  1. If you’re going to produce or curate content, measure it. Chances are, you already have Google Analytics. Use it. You need that technology for content marketing at a minimum. And to know what to measure, too. (Update: Buffer has an awesome blog post about using GA more effectively and what to measure.) 2. Have a defined process for measuring and what you do with the data. Having a data-driven culture helps too. If all that sounds overwhelming, my associates and I can help. 3. Don’t take on too many technology tools. More to manage, more expense. Not always more results. Technology for technology’s sake is not smart. Unless you can afford to have technology as hobby. 4. Automation may or may not be your best bet. Before you rush out and...

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Our Position on Collaborating with Agencies

on July 21 in Content Marketing | 0 comments

for Internet Marketing Firms, Creative Agencies, Boutiques, Web Dev Cos, Independent Consultants, & Freelancers (whew!) Let’s be honest: For all of our creating differences, small marketing & PR agencies usually do the same (or complementary) things.  So choosing collaboration over competition should be a no-brainer, right? We can’t be bothered with egos when there’s important client work to be done. This means making the right arrangements behind-the-scenes so that everyone wins. Here’s something else you might find refreshing. We don’t have prior agency experience. Zip, nada, none. We come from in-house, client-side, and too dang small or too scrappy to hire marketing and public relations agencies.  The result? No bad blood, no cliques. We’re laser-focused expectations management and insight. If you are a small agency, specialized branding or web dev shop, or even a talented indie such as a web developer or graphic designer, we can work with you in the following ways: Strategic Partnership You’ve got skills, we’ve got skills.  If you want an equal partner to sit at the table with you and help you with strategic and tactical execution for your clients, let’s talk. Strategic partnerships are not formed overnight; we have to fit with each other’s values. Ideally, we have plenty of time to understand and negotiate the roles, rights, and responsibilities as well as develop a relationship before rolling up our sleeves and getting to work. “Go slow to go fast” are words we live by. We have an established process to guide strategic partnership discussions. This means we can also advise you as a consultant if you are considering a strategic partnership with another agency or company. Bottom line: Side-by-side or handoff, we want to help you maintain client success.    Subcontractor To some, subcontracting is an ugly word but it doesn’t have to be. As long as the respect and appreciation is there, we don’t mind working behind-the-scenes to make you shine.  In fact, we take pride in helping to make others successful. We know you need margins too so we like to have open discussions about your expectations for markup as well as overall budget. Bottom line: Whether it’s outsourced project management to help you say YES to more clients or content/brand services to...

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How to Create Content Out of Thin Air

on May 1 in B-to-B, Content Marketing, Local Phoenix, Small Business | 0 comments

Have you been bombarded with “Content Is King” and similar messages (especially over the last two years) but left wondering how you are going to create content out of thin air?  If you have asked, “Where do I begin?,” this article is for you.  Here are four potential drivers for your content marketing and content development efforts. Data Looking at data you already have–or planning a targeted market research effort to collect new data–will allow you to create expert-level content and provide valuable (aka sharable and interaction-worthy) information to your ideal clients. Prospect Types Are you focused on a particular business model, channel, buyer persona, or industry?  You can create specialized content using the most appropriate media for distribution for each type of prospect.  Like all content development efforts, this can take planning and prioritization, but having the content to back up value propositions for (and create connections with) each prospect type can assist in lead and demand generation. Prospect Stages Your prospects need different information at each stage of the sales cycle.  By carefully considering where they are and what questions and needs they have, you can create content to attract prospects, qualify them, build trust and credibility, nurture them, and drive a buying decision. Brand You may have heard talk about brand stories, storytelling, branded content, and so on but maybe you haven’t invested in developing your brand. With an established brand, content development as well as sharing becomes easier, as your criteria for content is specifically derived from your company’s “owned emotion.” While branding (or re-branding) efforts do so much more for companies than merely providing a content touchstone, a solid, accurate brand promise in place can also drive everything from new terminology to content tone to creative and media decisions.   Phoenicians and Valley of the Sun Small Businesses:  Need more inspiration?  Need to create content? You’re invited to a Content Marketing Solutions Workshop, where we will review content strategies and execution best practices–and of course get you started!  For more information on upcoming dates and times, contact us.    ...

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