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How Content Marketing Fuels Social Media

  1. How Content Marketing Fuels Social Media Presented by Heather Timmerman, Director of Digital Marketing Sara Gomach Peck, Social Media/Content Specialist
  2. What is Content Marketing? A strategic marketing process for creating and distributing relevant and valuable content across multiple channels to attract, engage and acquire a clearly defined target audience with the objective of driving a profitable customer action.
  3. DID YOU KNOW? 88% of B2B marketers currently use content marketing as part of their marketing strategy, yet only 32% have a documented content marketing strategy.
  4. Repurposing
  5. Personas – Who are you talking to and what is important to them? Gap Analysis - What do you have and what’s missing? CREATE!
  6. Upcoming Content and Social Media Trends
  7. Upcoming Content and Social Media Trends

Notes de l'éditeur

  1. Hi @SMBMad! Before we kick things off and tell you a bit about us, we’d like to get to know you and do a quick audience poll. This is actually something we are going to do several times throughout the presentation. It helps us not only get to know you better but helps us understand where you are in terms of your content and social media strategy. How many people here are marketing generalists? Meaning that you “are” the marketing department and that social media just part of your list of things you need to do on a daily or weekly basis? How many of you focus solely on content marketing or social media in your role? Thank you for your show of hands. We can see there is a good mix of marketers here today. For those of you we “are” the marketing department, we will have some great high-level strategy takeaways. For the specialists in the audience, we have some really great tips and details to consider for content development, distribution and promotion on social media.
  2. The reason Sara and I wanted to do this presentation together is we represent both roles and are able to provide a well-rounded perspective. I’m Heather @hltweet, Director of Digital Marketing at @Acumium and a Content Marketer at heart. I’m used to being the “generalist” and doing it all so I’ve been the department and built departments. I got into content marketing around the time the CMI was being formed so I was writing about contenting marketing when it was the buzzword. I’m @Sara_GomachPeck, Social Media/Content Marketing Specialist at @Acumium. I have also done photography for Madison Magazine as well as photography and graphic design for Acumium clients. I get to dive deep into content and social and will share some tips and tricks with you today. I got my start in marketing at Goodwill Industries of South Central Wisconsin, so I guess you could say I’m a repurpose and reuse kind of girl. Perfect for what we will be talking about today. We’re presenting as a team as that is what you get when you work with us @Acumium. A team of really talented people who compliment each other’s skills so our clients are always receiving a holistic view of digital marketing and website development. To give you a little history, @Acumium has been around for 15 years. We’re a digital agency that provides strategy, creative and technology focusing on websites, ecommerce, digital marketing and software solutions to help companies increase their brand, grow sales and generate leads. To put it simply, we help companies grow. Whether that’s a custom product, website or digital marketing strategy, we not only help you build it, we help you promote it. We are proud to be a Google Partner and have also won Best Places to work two times. This year, we are going for a three-peat! You can find out more at We have a lot to cover today and want to make sure it’s valuable with case studies and takeaways, so let’s get started!
  3. Here’s a quick rundown of the agenda for today. We’ll talk about what is content, content marketing and why it’s important. We’ll talk about some very important first steps to consider when developing a content marketing strategy. That’s the content ideation phase. In this phase we’ll discuss how to conduct a buyer persona exercise and a content gap analysis that helps you decide what content you have and what content you need to create a well rounded strategy. We’ll also talk about content creation and walk through ways you can extend your content by taking just one piece of content and repurpose it 10 ways. Finally, we’ll end with social media distribution of content and ways to promote it on social media. We’ll give examples of different ad types and show you case studies from our own client examples. We’ll show you what has worked for a mix of B2B and B2C clients. And give you some takeways to bring it all together. Ready? Let’s go!
  4. Before we talk about content marketing, let’s take a step back and talk about content. What is it? In it’s most simplistic terms, content is anything that consists of text, imagery, video, graphics, sound, etc. Some common examples are: blogs, infographics, listicles, memes, podcasts, vines, case studies, whitepapers, surveys, etc. Content is everything and it’s everywhere. The content on your website or blog tells the story of your business and the services or products your company offers. It should bring in new leads, bring back current customers and spread loyalty. The content you produce should be valuable and offer relevant and inspiring solutions. Queue the definition above which is inspired by the content marketing institute’s definition, and rewritten in a way we use to explain to our clients. If you had the chance to listen to our SMB Mad podcast leading up to today’s presentation, you might remember the apple pie analogy we gave.
  5. QUICK POLL – How many of you are doing content marketing? Hands up and keep them up. How many have a documented strategy? WHY is content marketing so important? Year-over-year growth in unique site traffic is almost 8x higher for content marketing industry leaders (Source: Aberdeen) But content marketing is more than just inbound marketing or attracting traffic. It’s also about understanding the customer lifecycle and the entire customer journey. So how do you get started? The advice we would give is start small. By documenting something, you are already ahead of the game. This is a statistic taken from some research that the Content Marketing Institute published on their website. 88% of marketers use content marketing but only 32% have a documented strategy. I talk about this a bit in a blog post on Acumium called “5 Reasons a Content Marketing Strategy is Integral to Attracting Customers.” First understand the business goals. Is it to increase leads, sales, revenue in a particular area? If so, then match those business goals to your content goals. Tie them to personas and the customer journey (which we will get into later) and you have a sound strategy.
  6. Ideation: Overview Content Ideation is a very important phase in the content journey. In this phase we’ll talk about buyer personas, the customer journey and the content gap analysis. Skipping this step is very common but I would encourage all of you to take the time to go through all the exercises and feel free to ask us questions after the presentation. It will make your content marketing efforts much more focused in the end.
  7. Buyer personas are a very important step in the content ideation phase. Many clients come to us and know exactly who their audience is, but they don’t have it documented. It may sound silly, but documenting this important step keeps the customers wants and needs top of mind at all times. Some clients even print out the personas and tape it to the wall as a reminder. We perform a Buyer Persona exercise for all new clients we take on whether it is a custom development project, a website redesign project or a social media or content marketing client. The persona process consists of identifying these key components:
  8. Demographics: This is an easy one. Gender, geography, industry and internet savviness. This information will help determine what types of content to write during the creation phase and what targeting to use during the promotion phase. If you are a local retailer your strategy is going to be a lot different than if you are a global distributer for example. Motivators: Motivators is the next step in the buyer persona process. What motivates customers to choose you? Examples could be price, service, expertise, ease of use. A lot of times this comes back to your company’s value proposition. What makes you special and differentiates you from your competitors? Talk about that in your content. Pain Points: What frustrates customers about your product or service or causes them to go to the competition? Are you more expensive, or did they have a bad experience? Understanding pain points can be very powerful. Use those to your advantage in your content by addressing how your business does this aspect better than the rest. Barriers/Objectives: What are the barriers to entry? Would it be too expensive or inconvenient to switch to another brand or service? Is there too much work involved with leaving a current provider? Understanding the barriers can help you determine where to focus your efforts. WIFM (What’s in it for me?): These are statements customers might give on why they choose to do business with you. For example: I know that when I shop online at this business, shipping will be free and my order will arrive as expected. Or, I know when I use this company, they will get the job done on time and on budget. Quotes: These are actual quotes that your customers have said to you via phone, email or social media. For example: “I know that when I work with Company A, they are going to listen to my needs.” or “Love your product. The quality is exceptional. I have purchased your product for my entire family.” You can take it even a step further to think about what keywords each target persona would use in a Google search.
  9. Now that you understand the customer, it’s time to take a walk in their shoes along the customer journey. According to Salesforce it takes anywhere from 6-8 touch points to generate a viable lead. According to the online marketing institute that number is between 7 and 13. What that means is you need to be everywhere. An omni-channel approach targeting audience messages on specific channels will make a difference. Don’t be afraid that if you share something on one channel that you can’t share it on another. We are so bombarded with content that hearing consistent brand messaging is a good thing. It will help your business stay top of mind. Here is where content repurposing tactics can come into play which we will touch on later. Potential leads may first hear of you through brand awareness content such as blog posts and infographics, images and video that you share on social media channels. If this content peaks their interest, they may click through to the website and dig a little deeper. This is the consideration phase. This is where they may sign up for email, or a download. This tells the brand or service that they are interested enough in your content to give up their email address. This stage is where the brand really has a chance to nurture leads further down the funnel via email drip marketing tactics or any retargeting tactics. Pretty soon they may be interested enough to check out reviews and case studies. This is when they are really in the intent stage and nearing a decision so you want to make sure you have case studies available so they have a good sense about your company, product service quality.. Once they become a customer, the content options don’t stop. You should be encouraging them to write reviews, receive emails and eventually give them opportunities and reasons to become a brand ambassador spreading good word of mouth. Brand ambassadors find joy in helping the brand or product develop their offerings so engaging with these people is really important. Just look up any brand on YouTube and you will see tons of fans and user generated content.
  10. The gap analysis is an exercise you can do at any time. Before you write content or after you have written some content and need inspiration on topics. Understanding your audience is key which is why going through a persona exercise is so important. Once you understand your audience you can identify what topics resonate for each persona at each stage of the customer journey. Give example of the gap analysis exercise.
  11. If you have existing content, do a content audit and map out your personas and customer journey stages and identify the gaps. For example, Persona A may only have content written in the awareness and considerations stages but not intent or purchase. Basically, the concept of a gap analysis helps you identify content holes and brainstorm new topics and formats for content. If your content is relatable, useful and inspiring to your audience you will begin to funnel users who come to your website, your blog and your social media channels down the buying cycle. However, not all content will resonate with all your audiences and not all of your audience segments will be at the same stage of the customer journey at the same time. So creating content that reaches all audience segments at all stages of the buying cycle that is relatable, useful and inspiring should be your goal.
  12. Now that we know our buyer persons and what we need to create content that appeals to them and different stages of they buying cycle, we need to create content that resonates. Creating content isn’t hard, it’s just time consuming. That’s why if you have one good piece of content – or have a great theme in mind that you can expend upon – repurposing and/or creating new content comes easy. For many companies, getting started or finding the time is the hardest part. Marketing professionals wear so many hats at times that setting the time aside to either write or construct a viable strategy can easily get away from us. But, we need to do it. Did you know that 81-89% of searches start online? We need to be in this space, so setting time aside for it is imperative. Once you have a cohesive strategy and a few pieces of content, you can start to fuel your distribution channels, like social and email, with the content you created. Expanding it’s reach, referral traffic and ultimately your sales. BUT it’s not always about creating new content. The focus should be on evergreen content. Evergreen content is content that is always going to be relevant to your brand and always relevant in searches to bring inbound traffic to your website or blog. And then REPURPOSE that content as much as possible. In the following slides we’ll give you several examples of how we’ve done just that.
  13. When you signed up for this presentation, one of the things you were probably looking forward to was the real life case studies we promised. Let’s look @ProClipUSA as an example. We’ve been serving PCLP for 12 years dating back from helping get their first custom ecommerce website off the ground to providing full strategy and execution of their marketing, ecommerce consulting and website optimization. Proclip is an international distributor of mobile mounting solutions made from high-quality machine cut plastic engineered specifically for exact fit to a specific phone like an iphone 5S and exact fit to a vehicle (2014 Toyota Camery). Their phone mounts primarily serve their B2C audience, but they also have a B2B side of their business. They create solutions for fleets of vehicles, such as taxi cabs and municipal vehicles like police cars. They offer secure device stands for retail point of sale and kiosks. They even make mounts for the aircraft and the medical industry. Their B2C audience are tech and vehicle enthusiasts who like quality, one-of-a-kind products. It has been our pleasure to run the majority of their social media and also work with them on content creation and strategy.
  14. The first way to get started with content marketing is to have a place to host your content, like a blog. In this slide, we are starting at the top of the funnel. We have brand awareness posts that are relevant to a few of their target audiences: tech lovers and auto enthusiasts and the health care industry. In this stage we are really just trying to get found through organic search results by producing quality SEO content related to each industry. We are casting a wide net to see what we can catch, so to speak. Here, we show two types of blog post examples, one for B2C on the left and one for B2B on the right. Both blog articles are great for increasing SEO value on your website and for distribution via social media or email. However, you want to segment and target your audiences appropriately to ensure it’s content they want to see. Because you may have more than one persona, targeting based on keyword interest and job titles in industries on FB, and then segmenting within your email so that the right audience sees the right content will ensure your distribution is effective and meaningful. The more channels you distribute to, the more reach and engagement you will have with your content, thus driving up SEO relevance by increasing referral traffic and increasing your sales!
  15. CONSIDERATION EXAMPLE Here is an example of a 60 point DIY checklist we put together @Acumium. A big part of the lead generation process is to acquire emails of interested parties so you can remarket to them. There are many ways to do this. From contests on social media to downloadable ebooks and white papers to even quizzes. In order to be successful, you must create a quality piece of content that people will be willing to give up their email address for such as this DIY checklist above. There some basic website tips that we found ourselves repeating in meetings so we thought, why not put it out there to share with the world. From his piece of content we were able to gain valuable SEO and distribute it across multiple channels. What you can’t see from this image is the copy below that really gives good insight into what will be available once downloaded. For example: it will help you identify problems in key areas, such as Search Engine Optimization, Paid Search Advertising, Website Analytics, User Experience, Content, Social Media and Email Marketing. PLUS, tools you can use to maximize your efforts! Now who wouldn’t give up their email address for that?
  16. REPURPOSE EXAMPLE Here is an example of how we, @Acumium, repurposed that DIY checklist and included it as a bonus in another piece of content we created titled: 7 Ecommerce Website Essentials You Need to Grow Sales: A Guide to Create Sites That Convert. To the right is an example of how we distributed that piece of content on social media. This is also a great example of using graphic design in a very appealing colorful way that stands out in somebody’s email. Another way to promote this particular piece of content is to take some of those 60-points and break them into individual blog articles and/or individual social posts to maximize your efforts – believe us, creating this type of content isn’t necessarily fast, but as they say, they are definitely worth the wait once you start to see leads come in.
  17. INTENT Example Here is a great example of content that would be included in the INTENT phase of the customer journey. Case Studies: This is what will help “close the deal” if you will. People want to see examples of how you solved a problem or helped your customers. Here is an example of a case study on our client’s website. This case study from QPS (Quality Power Solutions). @QualityPowerUPS specializes in providing back up power supply systems to B2B customers in the IT, manufacturing, retail, financial and healthcare industries. Talk about a niche client. These case studies live on their site and create SEO juice and offer great content for social and email distribution.
  18. Here is the coordinating case study social post. To promote this post on Facebook, our targeting had to be extremely specific on this one and based on industry, job title and location – as QPS is a regional company. We boosted the post for less than $10 and while it only reached 516 people due to it’s specificity, it received great engagement, including 30 likes. That’s a 6% engagement rate – which is pretty darn good. More importantly, it brought awareness of QPS’ services to it’s exact target audience and created click-through’s to their site where people could learn more about them, sign up for their newsletter and more.
  19. LOYALTY EXAMPLE Here’s an example of some content that we would use as a loyalty example. Loyalty is two-fold. Your customers are providing feedback on your service or products which you are able to use in order to gain insight into what our customers value about it. But, they also help in the intent phase by providing real customer feedback into a businesses product or services. As a marketer, it’s our job to leverage these great reviews and really reinforce what we have been telling our leads all along. Reviews give us credibility. As marketers, it also gives us a great line of site into what our customers really think of our products and services. Valuable information to keep improving on all aspects of our business. And most times, this feedback is free on Facebook, Twitter, Yelp and many more. We’re going to go back to our good friends @ProClipUSA for this one, as they have a great example of how a simple customer survey can help a business in several arenas. A duel purpose piece of content, we were able to get valuable insight into what customers thought of ProClip products, via a customer survey. We were able to learn how customers used ProClip products and ultimately that their products made customers feel more safe in their vehicle while using mobile technology such as GPS, music streaming and hands-free talking. We then created a blog post and distributed this feedback multiple times using individual stats pulled from the original survey, linking back to that original blog post.
  20. We created individual social media posts for @ProClipUSA from the individual blog posts, all inspired by the customer survey results.
  21. Here is a great example of user generated content from @ProClipUSA. Each month we curate UGC entries and dedicate a blog post to the customers who sent them in. The story with the picture on the left is that a customer actually requested a drawing of a blue wizard in the comment box when placing an order online and the talented team at ProClip decided to grant his wish! The image on the right is a ProClip in action, in a customer’s car.
  22. Promotion: Here we’ll talk about different ad types and social channels You HAVE to pay to play on social media. Even if your budget is only $50 a month. That $50 will get you more exposure than nothing at all. PLUS, that exposure and customer interactions are trackable. Social media advertising works especially well due to interest based targeting. This can be what your customers are posting about, what pages they follow, and even things like specific life events they are experiencing such as the birth of a new child, an engagement, or even someone who’s recently retired. We can also target by region, income, education, etc. It’s really remarkable. PLUS, we can see how they actually ENGAGE in the content from liking, commenting, sharing, viewing images, clicking through to your website. Once they get to your website, we can use Google analytics to see where they went on your website. With Facebook’s retargeting pixel we can then retarget with those who clicked through to your website via a Facebook ad and retarget to them. This process can be complex and somewhat time consuming to set up but the results will be worth it.
  23. In this section we’ll present examples of several different ad types on different platforms. We chose client examples to show you on Facebook, LinkedIn and Pinterest. That’s not to say that Twitter or Instagram aren’t viable advertising platforms, they are. Our main goal is to give you a visual in this presentation. The biggest thing we want to emphasis here is to experiment. Experiment with imagery, targeting, content, ad type and channel. Fan ads are important for increasing your fan base. Here is an example of an off-page fan ad ran on Facebook for a new product/online service we developed and brought to the market called @mylifeandwishes My Life & Wishes is a husband and wife team who took a personal tragedy and turned it into a platform for helping people. After Michelle’s father passed away and it took them over 6 months to sort out all his financials for her mother. It was a long, drawn-out painful experience had her father stored everything securely in one place. For more information on My Life and Wishes check out their website:
  24. Here is an example of a carousel ad on Facebook for another customer of ours, @ChooseHope1. Human beings are visual creatures. The great thing about carousel ads is that you can display several images of your products in a scrolling, visual way. You can also take one large ad and break it out across several sections for a different effect.
  25. LinkedIn is a great platform for B2B advertising. Here is an example of a LinkedIn ad for @QualityPowerUPS. What’s important to note about LinkedIn is to share valuable, educational, evergreen content for that audience.
  26. Here is an example of an ad on Pinterest for @ChooseHope1. Pinterest is great for brand awareness and search! Be sure to use beautiful imagery. Quotes work well on Pinterest, as well as blogs.
  27. And here’s the grand finale. Facebook’s new Canvas Ad. If you had a chance to listen to our SMB Mad pod cast, you may have heard me mention my favorite CA type of ad on social right now which is Facebook’s Canvas ad. So this is a great example of how we took many pieces of content and put them into one ad. If you’re a content lover and a Facebook advertising lover, this one is for you. A few things that came out of our customer survey for @ProClipUSA was where people like to mount their phone besides the vehicle. People mentioned in their kitchen, at their nightstand for their alarm, in their bathroom for while they’re listing to news when the get ready in the morning, on their bicycle so they can track their fitness activities. These ae he many ways ProClip’s customers use their products. After we received the survey results, we created use case blog posts for each area people had interest in mounting their phone and created the house image you see at the top. @ProClipUSA created video for these scenarios and we compiled all of those used cases in this one ad to give a real line of site into the very ways people use technology in daily lives and how ProClip can help support that technology.
  28. Take aways: We packed a lot in today, as a reminder here are the things that we want you to take away. Don’t skip the content ideation phase because that will be the framework for the rest of your content marketing and distribution strategies. Take the time to create Buyer Personas, understand the Customer Journey and map out the Content Gap Analysis Less is more. It’s not always about creating MORE content, it’s about being creative with the content you have. We talked about different content examples during the customer journey phases. Gave a content repurposing example including: A 5 pt blog post overview article could become 5 separate in-depth blog posts and 10 SM posts. Social media promotion tips and ad types including the Canvas ad.
  29. Questions? Feel free to contact us @Acumium