Content Marketing WILL Boost Your ROI - Here's The Proof
Any marketing manager who has tried to get a budget approved for content marketing understands that the struggle to get corporate executives and managers to understand the value of content marketing is real. It is always easier to get a budget approved when you can show a return on that investment, which is why we wanted to take the time to prove that you can boost your ROI by engaging in a long-term content management program.
Persistent Content Marketing Leads to More Customers
Let's start off with some simple numbers that show definite results. In Blogspot's "Ultimate List of Marketing Statistics," it was found that 82 percent of companies that add content to their blog on a daily basis were able to get customers from those blogs. Only 57 percent of companies that blog monthly saw customer gains from their blog. This is proof that sustained content marketing works, and brings a strong ROI.
You Can be Part of the Decision Making Process
A banner ad or display ad is looked at as a piece of advertising, and is often dismissed by today's consumer. But a content marketing piece is seen as a valuable document that can influence your target audience's buying decisions. According to NewsCred.com, corporate buyers are three times more likely to read a content marketing piece before making a buying decision than they are to be influenced by a standard ad.
Content Marketing Puts Your Brand in a Positive Light
By working with your social media pages, you can use content marketing to shine a positive light on your products and your company. GE released some findings from a collaborative marketing effort it did with Buzzfeed that showed that 77 percent of Internet users who read content found through social media considered that content to be reliable. GE also saw their brand enhanced by nearly 140 percent because of the positive perception created by their comprehensive content.
Content Marketing Can be More Powerful than the Super Bowl
Advertisers clamor for a 30-second spot on the Super Bowl every year, but they may want to invest that money into content marketing instead. In a study performed by Intel, the company found that $5 million worth of Super Bowl advertising for 30 seconds resulted in 57 million engagement minutes on the company's advertising landing page, while investing the same $5 million on Facebook advertising that pointed to the company's content marketing website brought in a staggering 257.5 engagement minutes. The effects of a Super Bowl ad are fleeting, but content marketing will last for a very long time.
Keep Customers Engaged Longer
An online clothing retailer called Patagonia has a page called the Worn Wear campaign where customers tell their stories about wearing their Patagonia clothes until they wear out. The stories are wildly successful at retaining customers, and convincing new prospects that Patagonia's clothing is a wise investment. Since it is seven times cheaper to keep a customer than get a new one, it makes sense to use content marketing to retain the customers you have.
The next time you have to go into a budget meeting and talk about content marketing funds, you should now be armed with all of the information you need to prove the significant ROI offered by this long-term marketing approach. Once your company invests in content marketing, it will see the positive results for many years to come.
How to Find New Ideas for Your Blog Posts
Since good blogs need regular content, many blog owners find themselves struggling to find topics. Unless your blog deals with current news events of some kind, it can be difficult to think of something new to write about that will interest your audience. With a little creativity, you will be able to develop a string of topics that will constantly keep your audience coming back for more.
Use Topic Generating Engines Online
Believe it or not, the Internet is filled with websites designed to help you generate effective and entertaining content ideas. After using a prominent search engine to find some topic generators, all you need to do is tell the topic generator what you want to write about and it will give you plenty of great ideas.
Since these generators use an algorithm that tends to create waves of similar topics, you do not want to use these tools as your only source of topics. But you can get plenty of great ideas from what these pieces of software have to offer.
Use Visitor Input
Do you get questions from your blog visitors about various topics? If you do, then you are getting a steady stream of great blog post ideas that your visitors will find interesting. If one visitor is asking a question, then there is a good chance that many more people would be interested in the answer. Use visitor questions as topics for your blog, and you will create a wide variety of popular topics.
Social Media Interactions
Another way that your company interacts with customers is social media. You can use questions and comments from social media as topics, much the same way you can use visitor's questions. Just be careful to not get combative with your audience by answering questions and using topics that could ignite a confrontation.
You should always read blogs from other people in your industry for a few reasons. For one thing, blogs from the competition help you to keep up with industry trends. Competitor blogs are also were you can find great topic ideas. If you notice that the competition is not able to answer questions to its traffic adequately on a particular subject, then you can post the answer on your blog and become an industry hero.
Use Search Engines
When you are really stuck for topic ideas, then open up an online search engine and do a search for your industry. You may find something on a news website or some other outlet that catches your eye. If you can work that into a good blog post, then you just solved your own problem.
Hire a Digital Agency 🙂
Digital Agencies have teams of professional content writers who can come up for ideas for your blog, and then generate the content for you. For a reasonable price, you can have access to a professional creative staff who can write content that will interest your readers and increase your traffic.
Finding good blog topics can be difficult if you don't know where to look. Once you master the art of hunting down topics, then you will always have the ideas you need to create engaging posts that will keep your existing traffic coming back, and constantly add new visitors to your blog.
Four Fun Email Marketing Tactics That Work
When you work in Internet marketing, one of the first things you learn is that marketing has to be fun for the audience if it is going to work. If your marketing is boring or dull, then you won't get nearly the response that you want. But when you take some time to make your marketing fun, you can get more responses, and you can get valuable input from clients as well.
Email marketing is an important way to stay in touch with clients and deliver critical product information. When you incorporate some fun elements to your email marketing, you can make it even more effective and get better results.
Create An Exclusive Club
Your marketing emails become much more effective if you can create a situation where your customers look forward to getting your newest emails on a regular schedule. The easiest way to create demand for your emails is to create an exclusive club that gets promotional prices and inside information delivered in every email.
You need to create a program where only people who join your email list get special pricing deals, and get information on new products before those products are released. The promise of exclusive information and great pricing deals is always an effective way to improve your email marketing results.
Make Quality A Priority
Each and every one of your email marketing pieces should have great information, and look extremely professional. One of the biggest mistakes companies make is building a big list of marketing email addresses, and then putting out boring text emails that are very different than the emails used to attract that audience. When you make quality a priority for each email, you will find it easier to maintain your audience, and add new email addresses as well.
Movies and television shows use cliffhangers to get people to tune into the next episode or buy a ticket to the sequel whenever it comes out. Believe it or not, cliffhangers can work just as well in email marketing to get customers to eagerly anticipate your next email.
When you announce a new product early to customers on your email marketing list, then leave off the one big feature they will all want to read about and say you will announce that feature in the next email. Little cliffhangers in each email will create anticipation for your next email and get you better results.
Get Customers Involved
If a customer sends you a positive comment in response to your marketing email, then quote that comment in your next email. When customers see that their input matters, you will be able to turn part of your marketing emails into interactive events with clients.
Another great way to get customers involved in your emails is to list content winners in your emails and congratulate those winners. Once again, this allows customers to see that your contests are real, and it also gets customers a little excited that they could have their name featured in your next email.
The key to a good email marketing campaign is to have fun with it. When it looks like the company is having fun, then customers will respond in a positive way and help your emails to be much more effective and productive.
5 Reasons Your Pay-Per-Click Campaign Failed Miserably pt2
There are no absolutes in this world, but there are trends that we can use to avoid utilizing bad marketing tactics. When it comes to pay per click marketing, there are a lot of mistakes you can make that will cost you money. But there are four critical errors that are sometimes made in pay per click campaigns that not only diminish the results the campaign gets, but they could also damage future campaigns as well.
Not Matching Landing Pages With Ad Content
A well-written pay per click ad is going to get people clicking on the link to find a certain type of content. When people click on a link and wind up at a landing page that has nothing to do with the ad content, then consumers feel duped into seeing something they don't want to see. That is why you must be sure to create a relevant landing page for every pay per click campaign, and make sure that every link you use in your pay per click campaigns point to the right landing pages.
It is acceptable to keep old landing pages available on your website, but only if those pages are part of a pay per click campaign that is still going. Once you end a pay per click campaign, you should take down your landing page and develop a new one for your next pay per click campaign.
No Call To Action
A call to action statement at the end of your pay per click ad helps give your ad a sense of completion for the consumer, and it also inspires your audience to take action when they are done reading the ad.
A call to action can also be important if you want your audience to do something other than clicking on a link. For example, if you want customers to call a phone number or click a link for more information, then a quick call to action will make that clear and get you better results.
No Dynamic Development
When you first release a pay per click ad, it is not going to get you the results that you want. This is almost guaranteed in every campaign you will run. If you want better results, then you need to engage in ongoing development of your pay per click ad. If you are not using dynamic development to change your ad based on your results and the trends of your audience, then you will never give yourself the opportunity to maximize your results.
Not Analyzing The Competition
What is the competition doing with their pay per click ads? Is the competition doing something consistently that would indicate that it is working? In the business world, you cannot live in a bubble. You must analyze what the competition is doing, and use the competition's own success against them.
You Didn't Make Changes During The Campaign
If you are running a pay-per-click campaign and you are getting consistent data that tells you that a particular set of keywords is not working, then you need to change those keywords. Too many people allow a flawed campaign to run and then wonder why the results are not what they wanted. Monitor your pay-per-click campaign and make changes to improve its results as the campaign moves along.
You Didn't Hire A Professional Organization
A good pay per click campaign is developed over time and conditioned to reach a certain type of audience. When you find pay per click tactics that work, you should utilize those tactics and continue to develop them for future success. When your pay per click campaign starts to show poor results, then they are reasons for that. Your job is to find the reasons, correct them, and get your pay per click campaign back on a successful path.
4 Ways You Can Improve Your Email Marketing Efforts
You put together what you thought was a great email with an enticing offer and then sent it out to your customers. But after a few days of waiting, you have almost no results to show for your efforts. What happened?
Sometimes people can make email marketing into something much more complicated that it was meant to be. If you want to make your email marketing campaigns effective, then you need to hire a professional Internet marketing organization to give you the right results. But there are four basics about email marketing that every business owner should know that will help them to better understand their email marketing efforts.
Know Your Customers
Your email marketing efforts all start by understanding what appeals to your target audience, and what type of message will entice your customers to respond to your emails. By collecting sales and customer service data through good contact management software, you can develop customer trends that are valuable in developing effective email marketing campaigns.
Learn From Your Previous Email Campaigns
For the last three email marketing campaigns, you used a blue colored background to your messages and the response to each message was disappointing. For your next message, try a green background and see if that inspires your customers to read your messages.
Every success and failure you experience in previous email campaigns can be used to enhance future efforts. You may use something as simple as changing background colors, or your lessons may be a bit more complex. But as long as you are learning how to succeed from each marketing campaign, then you are headed in the right direction.
Segment Your Target Audience
Your customer profiles are invaluable in developing email marketing campaigns because that data can help you to create focused target audiences. Instead of sending the same message to every customer, you should be segmenting your customer base and creating target audiences that will respond to different messages.
For example, you can group all of the customers together that have a history of buying new product accessories as soon as they are released and send out new product announcements to those customers first. An effective email marketing campaign tries to make each message specific and personalized for every customer.
Have A Schedule
Your email marketing campaigns should have a release schedule to make it easier to monitor the progress of each email piece, and to make sure that you are spacing out your emails properly. Over time, you will be able to develop an understanding as to how often and how many emails you should be sending out to get the maximum results.
It does not take long to realize that finding success with email marketing requires the experience of a professional Internet marketing organization. Good email marketing does not happen by accident. It is planned meticulously, and then the data gathered from each campaign is used to improve future messages. When you do email marketing right, it can be an effective marketing tactic that helps your company to grow.
What Are Long-Tail Keywords And Why Do They Matter?
Over the past several years, Google has been changing the rules associated with keyword and search results. When the Internet was young, search engines were not very sophisticated and a website could get a lot of traffic by cramming as many keywords as possible onto a page. When users started to complain about content quality, Google responded by banning keyword stuffing and altering keyword rules. When users still complained about content quality, Google decided it was time to demand quality content from a website that was pertinent to the website's chosen theme.
What Are Keywords?
Keywords are the words that users utilize in search engines when looking for websites in your industry. If you sell bowling balls, then putting keywords such as "ball" and "alley" in your content would improve where your website ranked in the search engine results. But as Internet marketing companies found ways to manipulate keywords and generate traffic without creating useful content, Google started to focus on long-tail keywords.
What Are Long-Tail Keywords?
Long-tail keywords are phrases that are commonly used in content that is pertinent to your industry. With long-tail keywords, Google is not looking for an exact match when it comes to getting users the content they are looking for. Instead, Google searches your website's content for words that fit into certain long-tail keywords that are common in your industry. When Google can match up significant portions of your content with the right long-tail keywords, then your content gets more exposure on the search engine results pages.
Why Do I Care About Long-Tail Keywords?
Instead of relying on lists of short primary and secondary keywords to determine the value of content on a website, Google has shifted to complex algorithms that are constantly generating and evaluating long-tail keywords. If your content is not finding its place among the long-tail keywords in your industry, then you are going to have a hard time getting good search results for your website.
So What Do I Do?
Utilizing long-tail keywords is something that is best left to Internet marketing professionals. The science behind Google algorithms would take a Ivy League graduate to figure out, but the way those algorithms work is the domain of the Internet marketing expert.
The primary purpose of long-tail keywords is to make sure that the content on your website has value to users. Google also uses long-tail keywords to make sure that your content is relevant to your business. If a baking website starts posting personal finance advice, then Google will know and Google will punish that website.
The challenge with long-tail keywords is that they are constantly changing and there is no real concrete rules about them just yet. Internet marketing experts spend hours each day analyzing content from various industries to determine what kind of content appeals to users the most and will click with Google's search algorithms.
For website owners, it is important to focus on relevant and valuable content and start to forget about keywords. Google wants you to inform users and offer them information that they can use as opposed to manipulating keywords just to get traffic. Focus on quality content that is relevant to your industry and you will start to make some headway in the new world of long-tail keywords.
What Is Content Marketing And How Can It Help My Business?
Most marketing professionals know that the many advances in technology have made creating effective advertising a real challenge. With a DVR, people can now watch their favorite shows and skip right past the commercials. Internet advertising is simple enough to bypass and many marketers are concerned that consumers are also bypassing the advertisements in magazines as well. So how is a marketing expert supposed to reach an audience that is now able to bypass every form of advertising available? That marketing expert is supposed to use content marketing.
What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing is the process of generating valuable content that delivers information about your company and your products to your target audience. The trick is that the content needs to be valuable to your audience in order for it to be effective.
For example, a shoe manufacturer that creates an article on the latest shoe styles will probably get more people to read that article than it would to look over its advertising. But by the time consumers have read that article, they are inspired to look up more information on buying those latest fashions and that drives traffic to the company's website.
Content Marketing Works With Advertising
In good content marketing, there is a synergistic relationship between valuable content and well-placed advertising. For example, the shoe manufacturer may set it up where their advertising banners heralding the arrival of their new fashions show up in the top and bottom margins of their online article about the latest fashion. After reading the content, the consumer can just click on the advertisement to buy the latest products.
Content Marketing Works Like Product Placement
It is no coincidence that your favorite action hero is using an Apple laptop in their latest hit movie, because Apple paid plenty to have that laptop put there. You see your hero using the Apple laptop and Apple then bombards you with advertising that makes it almost impossible for you to avoid buying one.
Content marketing works much the same way as product placement. The only difference is that good content marketing tries to avoid direct attachments to specific product names or manufacturers. In other words, the real value in content marketing is in its ability to imply a customer need and then use well-placed advertising to push the consumer towards the products that can satisfy that need.
The Only Way To Market Products
If your customers are closing your pop-up ads and bypassing your television commercials, then content marketing becomes the only effective way to really market products. Good content grabs an audience and the marketing references built into that content drive sales. It sounds easy, but it takes a trained marketing professional to be able to put together a truly effective content marketing plan.
You spend good money on Internet banner advertising and pop-up ads, but are you sure they are working? Instead of spending your money on direct forms of advertising, you should consider talking to a marketing expert about content marketing. Good content marketing not only goes viral and attracts a loyal audience that demands to see the content, but it will also drive sales for your products and expand the brand name recognition of your company. Content marketing is the best way to make sure that your marketing message is being heard when everyone else's messages are being shut out.
Creating A Great Content Marketing Plan
A great marketing plan consists of a time line and then component pieces that are brought together to get the desired results. Since content marketing tends to be an ongoing process made up of many different continuous plans, it becomes important to understand the key component pieces you need and how they work together. Creating a great content marketing plan is all about reaching the right audience with the right information and it takes a seasoned professional to get the job done right.
A good content marketing plan is built around a list of powerful keywords, but the concept behind keywords has changed so much over the past year that only professional marketing experts really understand what is going on. Gone are the days when a primary keyword enhanced by a secondary keyword will boost your search engine results. These days, keywords need to be phrases that match what your target audience is looking for and the creation of those phrases has become incredibly complex.
The subject matter for your content is extremely important to your content marketing plan's success. Now, more than ever, the subject matter of your content will drive where your website shows up in the search engine results. Website owners are looking for content that drills deep into every facet of their industry to help provide information for their audience and get Google to boost their websites' exposure.
Sharing To Outlets
In order for your content marketing plan to be successful, you must take advantage of the many outlets available for your content. There are websites that allow you to post and promote your content and you can also explore the possibility of including your content as guests posts on relevant blogs. Always look to expand the reach of your content marketing if you want to gain more exposure.
Social media, when used properly, can help your website to gain a significant amount of relevant traffic in a short period of time. Not only should your company be sharing your website content on social media, but you should also have sharing buttons on each piece of content to allow your audience to share your content as well. If you can get your content to go viral on social media, then the returns can be significant.
Written For The Internet
The Internet has developed its own format for written material that includes short paragraphs and bold subheadings. If you want your content marketing plan to be successful, then you need to make your content desirable to your target audience. The best way to do that is to follow the Internet format for written content and break your information down into small, digestible pieces for your audience.
A great content marketing plan can take months to develop, but it can generate years of reliable traffic for your website. Some of the actions you take on your site will cause immediate reactions from the major search engines, while others will take months to gain traction. But when you take the time to develop a great content marketing plan, then you are setting your website up for long-term success in generating traffic and revenue.