Getting the most out of your content marketing is always a concern when you are spending significant time creating high quality content. In this post we will discuss 5 things you can do to boost the effectiveness of your content marketing.
These examples are a few that I’ve found around the web on my daily searches for high quality content. In no particular order, here are a few things that I’ve noticed will help.
Breaking News: What You Need To Know To Respond
By now, everyone who is involved in content marketing on a daily basis has heard the term “Newsjacking”. For those unfamiliar with the term, it was coined by David Meerman Scott, author of Real Time Marketing and PR. Newsjacking is more than just covering a story, it’s covering a story with your company’s unique perspective.
Hubspot defines it as “the practice of capitalizing on the popularity of a news story to amplify your sales and marketing success.”
Recently, Oreo managed to do this with the NFL Superbowl when the power went out. Oreo took advantage of this within 5 mins of the power going out. Almost 16 thousand re-tweets later and Oreo was a shining example.
Power out? No problem. pic.twitter.com/dnQ7pOgC
— Oreo Cookie (@Oreo) February 4, 2013
Another great example of this came from LeVar Burton. As Google was launching a campaign for Google Glass, LeVar made a tweet that stole the show. Anyone who is a fan of Star Trek: The Next Generation would have noticed this reference to the character he played on the show Geordi La Forge.
It still remains one of my all time favorites examples of newsjacking. LeVar was the big winner in this one.
#ifihadglass It would be a downgrade. -Geordi La Forge
— LeVar Burton (@levarburton) February 21, 2013
The key to making newsjacking work is to make your story as relevant as possible with a positive spin. Keep in mind that if you target highly volatile topics you better be prepared for a huge backlash.
Your Opinion Counts Be Sure To Share It
In every major industry today there is some type of research study about trends or best practices. Not many people like to read through that information and that becomes an opportunity for you. Here are a few different examples within my industry that related directly to content marketing.
For the past few years, Hubspot has put out several industry reports. Their latest, the 2013 State of Inbound Marketing, always contains tons of quality stats and information. Here’s how two marketers approached it.
Brittney Stephenson took advantage of it by creating a summary of the report and posted “10 Key Takeaways from HubSpot’s 2013 State of Inbound Marketing Report.” She summarized it best by saying this:
If you don’t have time to go through the full report, here are 10 interesting (and sometimes surprising) takeaways from the annual survey.
Another research report that is coming out on an annual basis is one we talked about last time, the 2013 B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends. It’s a joint research report from two power houses in the industry, the Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs.
Similar to the above example, the eTail Blog decided to do a quick summary of this report. I don’t think they did as good of a job as Brittney, but the effect is the same. They are able to get SEO rankings and traffic from people searching that particular research report.
A more comprehensive angle was taken by Lee Odden in his post “100+ B2B Content Marketing Statistics for 2013.” Lee painstakingly detailed over 100 stats that were in the report. At the end, he does make mention that this isn’t everything in there.
At that point if you still need more stats than what Lee was kind enough to summarize for us, then you should grab the report for yourself.
Humanize Your Brand With A Sneak Peak Behind The Scenes
People are curious by nature and also like to compare themselves with others. This is why one of the easiest things to do is show the funny or chaotic things that happen behind the scenes. People relate to people. Think about this for a minute –
Would Mickey Mouse be as appealing if he actually looked more like a mouse and less like a person? You know, with arms and legs, walking on two legs, and having a pet dog just like real people.
The TV and Movie industries have learned this well over the years. After the season comes out they know if they include outtakes, bloopers, and behind the scenes material their DVD’s will sell higher volumes.
“Making of Movies” – In this example of White House Down, the movie studio blends a movie trailer with plugs for how good the director is and behind the scenes footage on set. It’s just a quick teaser coming in at almost 3 and a half minutes.
Reality TV Shows – 4 of the top 10 most watched shows in the 2012-2013 television season were shows taking a peek inside a group of people’s lives. People want to know how you or your brand handle certain situations. Do you break under pressure or do you rise to the occasion? Including behind the scenes type material with a peek into your daily life is something people like.
How much you show is up to you. Think about your personal and brand image and how it will effect the overall opinion of those that see it.
Outtakes of Shows – Mistakes are a part of life and how you handle them can be really funny. Here’s one of the most popular TV shows currently running, the Big Bang Theory… Bloopers.
I hope you laughed as much as I did watching that, but that’s pretty much the point. You feel good and bond even more with the show. If you haven’t been watching it, you may just start after having seen this clip.
Feature Your Clients In The Form Of A Case Study
Case studies are a great way to show through examples just how effective your product or service is. Generally, the more complex the problem, the better a case study can be at getting your point across to your prospect. The most obvious question for this is, what makes a good case study? Most case studies should have at least 3 distinct parts.
- The Problem
- The Results
- Methodology On How You Solved The Problem
MarketingProfs is a great example of this with the case studies they do. Each and every single one follow the same format and make it really easy to see the benefit of what they are trying to show.
Another person that does this extremely well is Neil Patel. Here’s an example that he used for Gawker. Neil also uses a very specific good headline to grab your attention right off the bat. The case study “How I Used SEO to Drive 5 Million Visitors to Gawker Media Sites in 3 Months” goes into great detail and specific steps on what they did to drive the traffic via SEO to the Gawker site. He also follows up a great case study with a call to action to drive quality leads back to him on a regular basis.
In both examples, they clearly define the problem that they are solving and the definitive results they got. MarketingProfs tells some best practices and takeaways they learned, while Neil Patel goes into more detail on how he got the results. Both of the case studies are great examples of how to do one.
Have A Strategy And Execute Your Plan, But Above All Else Be Flexible
I’d like to leave you with a quote from Bruce Lee.
The internet moves at the speed of thought and it will be impossible for you to be all things to all people or to be everywhere at once. Do take the time to learn the nuances of each platform that you participate in and figure out what’s appropriate.
With each platform comes different challenges and a new way for you to present your content. Take advantage of the Content Circle and maximize your placement of each type of content that you make.
What’s your take? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts.