When it comes to building a relationship with a reporter, there is a fine line between courting and stalking. Sound a little bit…or a lot…like dating? Good. Close your eyes, and think back to when you were chasing your high school sweetheart, and you will get the hang of it in no time flat.
Mar 19, 2015
The concept of influencer marketing describes the practice of targeting your marketing to a select group of individuals, e.g., journalists, analysts and bloggers— that have influence over the buying decisions of your target audience. If you have a media list that you regularly pitch to, you’re already using influencer marketing in your PR program. But are you leveraging this strategy for your content marketing program as well?
Your team is at Mobile World Congress, arguably one of the biggest trade shows of the year for most companies. They’re schmoozing with customers, eating great dinners every night and having an all-around good time. You’ve been left back at the office while they have all the fun.
Yep, life’s not fair, however, the reality is that trade show “fun” usually leaves everyone downright exhausted and wishing they were back in the office in their cushy chair rather than standing eight hours a day, waiting for the enormous taxi line or the Metro, and heading out for three-hour dinner after three-hour dinner.
Feb 6, 2015
Struggling to come up with fresh ideas for posting updates on LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+ and Facebook? Even the most accomplished curation gurus can get stuck.
You have a blog, and it’s going well—you’re able to keep up with posting a few times a week, and have even convinced different team members to chip in once in a while with a unique perspective. And the blog
is driving new traffic and new leads to your company’s website. So if things are already going well, why would it make sense to add a second blog to the mix?
Jan 27, 2015
Mobile World Congress is likely one of the biggest trade shows your company does every year. With more than 85,000 attendees and 3,900 media and analysts attending, it seems like a great time to make an announcement and get plenty of coverage, right?
We recently revealed 18 compelling reasons why you should blog more frequently; but according to the Content Marketing Institute, 50% of B2B marketers are challenged with producing content on a consistent basis. On the other hand, about 64% of B2B marketers outsource their content writing. I’d venture to guess that there is some significant overlap between that other 50% who have no problem creating enough content and those who chose to outsource their content.
Drive SEO for potential customers who are searching for specific terms
Provide new ways to drive lead generation for your sales team
Offer valuable information for your customers and potential customers, and thought leadership for your executive team
But more words on more pages isn’t going to do the trick. Your site needs specific types of content that will have the most impact for the areas mentioned above. Here are five pieces of content you should add to your website immediately:
1) A blog, or maybe even more than one. Many companies have a blog already. If you do, up the ante. If you post once a week, invest the time in two times a week on topics that are valuable to your company. If you have one successful blog, weigh whether a second one makes sense to promote a different audience segment, for example, enterprise vs. service provider or wireless vs. wireline. Make sure you’re providing an opportunity for visitors to sign up for automatic email updates each time you post. That converts visitors into followers, making them one step closer to becoming customers.
2) Case studies. You can tell your story well, but often your marketing materials may sound like….well…marketing materials. Instead, offer one or more case study for each vertical market you are trying to reach. Consider using a third party to write them so they hit your salient points but are written in the customer’s voice. Be careful not to overdo it; you want to provide your best examples, not EVERY example. Think “small, medium, large”—provide a use case from a small customer, a medium customer and a large one (where appropriate) in each vertical. If you want to acknowledge a customer without a case study, use their logo with permission.
3) One or more white papers. White papers are a great way to tout your company’s deep knowledge about specific subject areas. They allow companies to be part of a conversation when they might not have a solution yet. They provide great reason for your sales team to connect with existing customers and those in the funnel. And, with a lead capture form in place, they are a great way to provide your sales team with a constant stream of new leads.
4) Press releases. When you’re first getting started, show off as much news as you can. Stuck with “no news?” There are plenty of things you can “announce,” including industry predictions, quarterly or yearly growth rates, traction in specific international markets, for example. Don’t be shy about making announcements, but make sure they map to your overall marketing goals.
5) Press clippings. Stuck with no coverage? Ask your PR team to work with you on a few contributed articles or blog posts to sites that accept them, then add those to your site. Grow this area over time. Consider paraphrasing the first paragraph of each external article to maximize SEO.
Of course, these pieces of content aren’t valuable unless you’re actively promoting them. Make sure each new piece across these five areas is heavily promoted on your social media streams, sent to your sales teams so they can send the links to their customers, added to your newsletters, and more. Your investment will pay off with new traffic and new leads for your company.
Are you currently blogging for your business? If not, you should be. If so, are you consistent? Having a blog that’s not being updated regularly (at least once per week) can hurt your brand more than not having a blog at all. If you are blogging, are your posts informative or mostly self-promotional in nature? If you’re hoping to build an audience of loyal brand followers, recycled press releases and company news simply won’t cut it.
Studies have shown that blogging consistently, offering content that’s valuable, relevant and interesting, creates more sales leads, resulting in increased revenue. Here are 18 statistics that build a convincing case for creating custom content in the form of blog posts:
- 62% of marketers published a blog in 2013 (Hubspot’s 2013 State of Inbound Marketing)
- B2B companies that blog generate 67% more leads per month than those who do not blog (Hubspot)
- 82% of marketers who blog see positive ROI for their inbound marketing (Hubspot)
- Blogs give websites 434% more indexed pages and 97% more indexed links (Content+)
- Brands that create 15 blog posts per month average 1,200 new leads per month (Hubspot)
- Once you write 21-54 blog posts, blog traffic generation increases by up to 30%. (TrafficGenerationCafe)
- Businesses that blog ≥ 20 times/month get 5x more traffic than those who blog ≤ 4 times/month. (Hubspot)
- 82% of marketers who blog on a daily basis acquired a customer from it. (Hubspot’s 2013 State of Inbound Marketing)
- 37% of marketers say blogs are the most valuable type of content marketing (Content+)
- 81% of companies consider their blogs “useful,” “important,” or “critical”. (Hubspot)
- 92% of companies who blog multiple times per day have acquired a customer from their blog. (HubSpot)
- Among those who use e-mail marketing, companies that blog get twice as much traffic from their email than those who don’t. (HubSpot)
- 37% of marketing managers believe the most important channel for engaging customers is content-led websites. (The CMA)
- 62% of B2B marketers rate blogs as effective (CMI/Marketing Profs)
- 43% of marketers generated a customer via their blog in 2013. (Hubspot’s 2013 State of Inbound Marketing)
- 81% of businesses have reported their blog as useful or critical to B2B lead generation. (Nurture)
- Only 9% of U.S. marketing companies employ a full-time blogger (Fast Company)
- 78% of chief marketing officers think custom content is the future of marketing. (Hanley-Wood Business Media)