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5 Effective Content Marketing Strategies That You Shouldn’t Ignore

5 Effective Content Marketing Strategies That You Shouldn’t Ignore

Beyond • October 7, 2013

Blogging has become one of the most important content marketing strategies for companies to rely on. Content marketing in general is a primary focus for most companies that are looking to expand their online marketing efforts. While content has been proven to be king over and over again, and with blogging being the main content development tactic, there is more to content marketing than blogging. If you are using blogging as your main content marketing tactic, you are only scratching the surface of the tactics that you could use to expand your reach and diversify your content marketing strategy. Content Marketing Tactics you can put on the Back Burner While blogging is king, there are many other content marketing tactics that you should consider putting on hold, especially if you have limited resources and are working on a tight budget. To get the most out of your content marketing strategy, you need to cut ties with the tactics that are not delivering results and focus on the tactics that provide maximum results. Here are some of the content marketing tactics, while they still could be effective in the right circumstance, are starting to fall out of favor with content marketers, and more importantly, with your customers and users. They include: Whitepapers Podcasts Printed books and magazines Syndicate content 5 Effective Content Marketing Strategies that you shouldn’t ignore In addition to blogging regularly, there are a number of additional content marketing tactics that you can use to enhance the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. Adding the following content marketing tactics will give your efforts a boost and diversify your content development efforts: Testimonials. Testimonials sell! This is why they are now considered by many to be the most effective content marketing tactic. Social media. The importance of social media continues to evolve as a more embedded part of your content marketing strategy. Case Studies. The numbers don’t lie. Internet users and prospective clients want to see what you have done in the past. Video. YouTube videos and webinars continue to become more popular with internet users. Newsletters. Utilize your email contacts and create a monthly or quarterly newsletter to update your followers, customers and contacts about what is happening with your organization. These are only a few of the most effective content marketing tactics that you use. What is most important is finding out what tactic makes most sense for your company and yields the best results for your content marketing strategy. What do you think? What content marketing tactics is currently part of your strategy? Which ones are most effective? What tactics have been the least successful?


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Online Content Writing Mistakes That Will Instantly Hurt Your Credibility

Online Content Writing Mistakes That Will Instantly Hurt Your Credibility

Beyond • September 9, 2013

Many people may not think a simple spelling error is a big deal, but it could be to your readers. This is why it is so important to put in the necessary time and effort into ensuring that all published online content is not only high quality and insightful, but also free of mistakes. Content mistakes can and will hurt your credibility. This could cause you to loose blog readers, make it more difficult to build an online following, and most importantly, you could lose customers, sales and it could impact your bottom line. Content mistakes that will hurt your credibility We are now at a point in time where anyone can publish content online. With no shortage of WYSIWYG applications that allow you to blog and create webpages, more and more people are writing, and writing content that is full of mistakes. Here are 5 of the most common content mistakes that you need to avoid: Focusing on keyword density over quality. One of the biggest content writing mistakes made by small businesses is focusing too much on SEO and keyword density. Yes, we understand that you want to get ranked on the first page of Google, but you should never sacrifice the quality of your content to do so. Google is now putting a lot of emphasis on high quality content. More importantly, when posting awkward and keyword stuffed content, you will have a difficult time converting your visitors into customers if your content is low quality and provides little value. Rushing the writing project. A second common mistake that can hurt your credibility is rushing any writing project. Rushing over things opens the door for many different oversights to occur. From spelling and grammar errors, to broken links, lack of quality, less than enticing titles and a general disconnect between what your readers want and the content you provide, there is no shortage of things that could hurt your credibility if you rush your writing. Hard selling all the time. While there is a time and place for hard selling, it doesn’t mean that you need to do it all the time. People are savvy to hard selling techniques and are turned off by them. Therefore, you need to find the right mix of content that offers insightful information and content that is meant to convert sales. Not having someone else read over your work before posting. This is perhaps the most common mistake made by everyone. Even though it may take a little longer to get your content posted online, having a fresh pair of eyes can do wonders for your writing. It is so easy to overlook minor spelling errors. Plus, a second look from a trusted colleague could provide you with additional insights and ideas to make your writing even better. If you don’t have someone else to look over your work, let it breathe and then come back to it for a round of editing. Not thinking about the readers. Give your readers what they want. This will keep them coming back to your website. Failure to be customer focused is transparent and your readers will see right through you. Not creating content that your customers are looking for will have a negative impact on your perceived company image. If you follow these 5 tips, then you will definitely be on the right track to improving your writing and ensuring that you avoid posting anything that will hurt your credibility.


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The Do’s and Don’ts of Content Marketing

The Do’s and Don’ts of Content Marketing

Beyond • August 12, 2013

We hear a lot about content marketing these days. It is the latest and greatest in a long line of internet marketing strategies that is used by marketing and SEO professionals alike to engage and attract customers. When done correctly, content marketing provides a number of important benefits such as better keyword targeting to increase the number of visitors to your website, more targeted content that will help you increase your range of target keywords, and a better search ranking for your website. Every successful content marketing strategy has a number of common elements. In the same sense, every unsuccessful content marketing plan also shares similar characteristics. This is why it is important to understand both the successful tasks (the Do’s) and the strategies you want to avoid (The Don’ts) when developing your content marketing strategy. The following outlines the Do’s and Don’ts of content marketing: The Do’s Use a diverse mix of content such as blogging, guest blogging, infographics and other types of online media content. This offers a well-rounded experience for your users. Have a blog on your website, add content frequently, and focus on high quality posts. Share your content on your social media accounts. When using infographics make sure to make it visually appealing and informative. Include stats, numbers and other information that is directly connected to the topic. Make content sharing as easy as possible. When posting content on external websites, focus on finding quality sites that will give you a high quality link. Make sure that you enter the conversation people are having online about your brand. Respond to people that have commented on your blog posts, social media pages, and other content you have published online. The Don’ts Don’t write articles or blog posts about topics that have been done a million times before. Be unique and avoid copying other content strategies directly. No one likes copycats! Avoid taking a “hard sell” approach. Focus on informing and being a resource for users. Don’t focus on quantity over quality. Avoid duplicate content. Period. This will just get you in trouble with Google. Don’t cheap out on the creation of graphics, coding, and multimedia for your content marketing plan. If you do, it could end up not looking professional and polished. Don’t live in a vacuum. Don’t forget to tie your content marketing strategy into pre-existing content. Make sure you include links and mention it on your social media accounts. This will encourage readers to continue to consume additional content from your brand. Creating high quality content through a targeted content marketing strategy is an effective way to connect users with your company and your brand online. Focus on the Do’s and avoid the Don’ts and you will be well on your way to increased website traffic, a better search engine ranking, and a more engaging relationship with your customers.


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Why Your Website Needs A Blog

Why Your Website Needs A Blog

Beyond • July 15, 2013

Having a blog on your website is now an essential component of your online marketing strategy. With the changes that Google has made in recent months with the Panda and Penguin updates, having a solid content strategy is more important than ever before and your blog is the central hub for your websites content development. Regularly updating and adding posts to your blog is the catalyst for many of your marketing strategies. This is the prime reason why you need to have a blog. Here are some other important reasons why a blog is a must: It provides SEO benefits. Content is still king and your blog is one of the most effective ways to continuously add fresh content to your website, which will help you maintain your search ranking. It’s an easy way to add content. Blogs make it easy to add content. Rather than having to create new pages on your website, all you have to do is log in and add the content. With the simplicity of blog platforms today, if you know your way around Microsoft Word you can easily add content to a blog. Establish yourself as a thought leader and expert. The more you blog and the more you write about topics within your industry, the better chance that you have of being an expert in your industry. It will increase website traffic. Having a blog gives people a reason to come back to your website on a regular basis, thus helping to increase new and repeat traffic. It is great sharable social media content. Ever struggle about what to post on Facebook or Twitter? A blog can easily fix this problem. Once you add a blog post to your website, your next step should be to share it on your social media profiles. It helps with user engagement. Blogging not only helps to increase traffic to your website, it also gives users another way to engage with your company. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and encourage users to comment on your posts. This will create discussions and get people more involved with your brand. These are only a few of the dozens of ways that a blog will benefit your website and your brand as a whole. If you don’t already have a blog on your website, you need to seriously consider adding one. Remember, having a blog is only the beginning. Once you add it to your website, you need to create content and post regularly to maximize its effectiveness. Happy blogging!


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Why Your Website Needs A Blog

Why Your Website Needs A Blog

Beyond • July 15, 2013

Having a blog on your website is now an essential component of your online marketing strategy. With the changes that Google has made in recent months with the Panda and Penguin updates, having a solid content strategy is more important than ever before and your blog is the central hub for your websites content development. Regularly updating and adding posts to your blog is the catalyst for many of your marketing strategies. This is the prime reason why you need to have a blog. Here are some other important reasons why a blog is a must: It provides SEO benefits. Content is still king and your blog is one of the most effective ways to continuously add fresh content to your website, which will help you maintain your search ranking.   It’s an easy way to add content. Blogs make it easy to add content. Rather than having to create new pages on your website, all you have to do is log in and add the content. With the simplicity of blog platforms today, if you know your way around Microsoft Word you can easily add content to a blog.   Establish yourself as a thought leader and expert. The more you blog and the more you write about topics within your industry, the better chance that you have of being an expert in your industry.   It will increase website traffic. Having a blog gives people a reason to come back to your website on a regular basis, thus helping to increase new and repeat traffic.   It is great sharable social media content. Ever struggle about what to post on Facebook or Twitter? A blog can easily fix this problem. Once you add a blog post to your website, your next step should be to share it on your social media profiles.   It helps with user engagement. Blogging not only helps to increase traffic to your website, it also gives users another way to engage with your company. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and encourage users to comment on your posts. This will create discussions and get people more involved with your brand. These are only a few of the dozens of ways that a blog will benefit your website and your brand as a whole. If you don’t already have a blog on your website, you need to seriously consider adding one. Remember, having a blog is only the beginning. Once you add it to your website, you need to create content and post regularly to maximize its effectiveness. Happy blogging!


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What to Do With Your Content After You’ve Written It

What to Do With Your Content After You’ve Written It

Beyond • June 10, 2013

Writing the content is only step one Writing content is only the first step in the process of content marketing and creating awareness for your brand online. Once you have spent the time and effort polishing an article or blog post and are now confident that you have something you are proud of, it is time to put it online. This is often where most people fall short. It is also one of the main reasons that people fail to have their content viewed by a larger audience. Too many people reply only on posting on their website or blog. Just because you add a new article to your website or add a new post on your blog does not mean that people are going to find it. You need to tell them about it! Enter content distribution. Don’t limit content creation to your website or blog One of the most important things that you need to understand about content is that you should not limit your creativity to your website or blog. There are many other great places online where you can create a profile, write great content, post it and attract a larger following. Diversity is key when it comes to posting your content online. This will also help you build backlinks and broaden your online presence. Channels to distribute your article There are many very effective channels of distribution that you need to use for your content. They include: Other blogs Guest Posts Social Bookmarking Sites Email newsletters Widgets and RSS Press Releases Article Directories Social Media Don’t forget to repurpose your content Repurposing your content is a great way to get the most out of one topic. Just to be clear, repurposing your content does not mean creating low value spun articles. It means taking a concept or topic and creating a series of valuable resources that you can distribute to a number of website online. For example, let’s say that you created a blog post and posted it on your website. Rather than just tweeting a link to your followers and moving on to the next topic on your list, you can use your post to create other types of content that you can distribute online. They include: A podcast that you can post on iTunes Creating a slideshow and posting it on SlideShare A top 10 list based on the topic of the post FAQs that you can post on your website A short video blog that you can post on YouTube Another blog post that focuses in on a specific point A directory article that expands on a key point of your blog post There are many ways that you can repurpose your blog posts and it is a great opportunity to share unique content and distribute it only. Using Social Media to Share Your Content It goes without saying that using social media to create awareness for your content online is vital. Each and every time that you post content online you need to take advantage of your social network and share the content with everyone in your social circles online. Using social media is the key to expanding your reach online, reaching a wider audience, and hopefully having your content go viral online. So, Tweet your blog post, share the link on Facebook and LinkedIn and use the content to engage with your customer and social media follower for maximum effect. Posting content on your blog is only the beginning!


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What’s in a Title? Everything! The Importance of Writing Effective Blog Post Titles

Beyond • May 15, 2013

A good title makes all the difference in the world. It can be the difference between having your post widely read and shared across the internet and only getting a small amount of traction. The main purpose of a title is to garner attention and entice people to start reading your post. This is why the words that you use and how your craft your title is vital to the success of your post. You can have the most insightful post in the world, but if your title doesn’t incent people to click on your article, no one will ever discover your wonderful post and the wisdom that is contained within. A great title will sell your post to readers and get them to click. An average title that lacks engagement will be overlooked and get lost in the sea of information online. Your blog post title is a marketing tool in itself. It is what will appear in search engine results, links, in archives, and on social media sites. This is why it is important to spend some time working on your title. It is the first thing that readers see and we all know what they say about first impressions – you never get a second chance to make a first impression. 10 Tips for writing engaging blog post titles Here are 10 effective tips for creating engaging blog post titles: Make it attention grabbing Include keywords in the title Be short and to the point Deliver on your promise in the body of the post Be controversial from time to time Use the list approach (10 top, 5 benefits, 3 reasons, etc.) Include a benefit in the title Pose a question Use emotional triggers Use power words Don’t forget to track The only way to know which titles are working and which ones are not is to track them. This will help you refine the title’s you use over time to make them more effective. It is also help you narrow down which topics and posts your audience prefers, which words and which type of titles get the most clicks. To track your titles it is important to make note of the following: Views. This is a good indication that the titles you are using are in tune with the content your targeted audience is looking for. It also indicates that the words and style of titles you are using are effective and getting users to take action. Shares. If people are sharing your posts, this is an indication that you are providing value to readers. It also signifies that you are delivering on the promise you make in your title. Comments. Getting someone to comment on your post shows that you are onto something and have engaged them in the conversation. This information will provide you with some great information about where you need to focus your content strategy now and into the future. How much time do you put into your titles when you write blog posts? Do you just write the first thing that comes to mind? Or, do you take time to craft your titles carefully based on previous posts, keywords, and other information?


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The Importance of Including a Call to Action in Your Blog Post

The Importance of Including a Call to Action in Your Blog Post

Beyond • April 8, 2013

A call to action is a very important marketing tool. It is used by writers and web designers to elicit a response or evoke a desired action. Ideally, a call to action should be included in everything that you write. After all, you want your readers to act on what you are writing about, right? The good news is that most writers use a call to action regularly. They add it within their website content, sales letters, and emails. But for some reason, people tend to forget to add in a call to action into their blog posts. Why they forget this is a mystery, but it could be costing them when it comes to the level of engagement they experience on their blog from their followers. Blogging is about generating a response from readers A major part of writing a blog post is to generate a response and this becomes more difficult when a call to action is absent from your post. You need to incent your readers to take action and this is exactly what a call to action will help you do. The reason you write is to get readers to take action in some way, shape or form. Where to place your call to action From a blogging perspective, you can place a call to action pretty much anywhere in your post as long as it makes sense and is relevant to your content. If you are writing about something and want your readers to take action, throw in a call to action. It is not uncommon to see multiple calls to action through a post. We see them at the beginning, in the middle, and at the end of posts. However, you should always include a call to action at the end of every blog post you write. It can be in the form of a question, it can be a link, or it can be a simple reminder to engage in some way. The important thing to remember is that whatever shape your call to action takes, it needs to directly relevant to your post. What action should I ask my followers to do? Don’t be afraid to ask your readers to try a number of different actions. Just like with your content on your website and blog, you also need to keep your call to action fresh by changing it up from time to time. Here are some of the many actions that you can request your readers to perform: Ask them to comment on your post Ask them to share your post with their social network Ask them to Like your post Ask them to click on a link to a related page on your website/blog What actions to you ask your reader to take? How do you implement a call to action into your blog posts? Let us know – we would love to hear your tips and strategies!


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The Value of Users Generated Content – Part 2

The Value of Users Generated Content – Part 2

Beyond • March 12, 2013

One of the most effective methods to alleviate the pressure of trying to produce an increased amount of high quality content without destroying your budget is to look to your users to create content for you. User generated content (UGC) is content on websites, blogs and social media platforms that is created by the users. Rather than have your team of writers develop the content internally and post it on your website, it is your followers, fans, and website visitors that create some of the content. Effective User Generated Content Strategies The truth is that most websites are interested in utilizing user content as a small percentage of their overall content strategy. They want to use it as a way to increase volume without increasing their budget. They want to use it in tandem with the content they regular develop internally. Here are a number of effective user generated content strategies to create more content for your website: Guest blogging: This is one of the most effective ways to get high quality content from your website users. Requesting guest posts from other bloggers or industry professionals in exchange for a backlink to their website will help you develop a list of regular blog contributors. Enable comments: Enabling comments gives users the chance to add content and interact with your website. However, this will also likely require a moderator. Encourage reviews: Encouraging users to voice their opinions about products, services, news and related topics is a great source of content. Create a discussion area: Developing an area for your users to discuss topics that are related to your website will not only generate content, but it is also a great tool for getting to better understand your users concerns, preferences and opinions. User profiles: Offering users the option to create a user profile allows them to create content for your site and it also encourages regular interaction with other users that are part of your website community. Benefits of User Generated Content It will increase content level without increasing your budget. It keeps your content fresh. It can help boost your SEO efforts. It increases social engagement and interactivity. It can increase website traffic by encouraging repeat visitors. It gives you the opportunity to collect data about your users. It enriches the overall user experience. Websites need to be increasingly creative in how they approach content development. User generated content is an effective way to not only fill an increasing need for regular fresh content, it is helps to alleviate the strain on your content marketing budget.


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The Value of Users Generated Content – Part 1

The Value of Users Generated Content – Part 1

Beyond • March 11, 2013

There is no doubt that content continues to be a vital part of any websites SEO campaign. Google Penguin and subsequent updates have reinforced the need for companies to invest and put more time and resources into a content strategy. Fly by the seat of your pants content writing will leave you disorganized and you will have a tough time keeping up with the production of high quality content on a consistent basis. With the pressure to create large volumes of content, there is a need for companies to identify effective strategies that also fit within their budget. Not every company can afford to open their wallet and expand their budget for content. So, there is a need to identify ways to generate more content without blowing your budget out of the water. Enter User Generated Content One of the most effective methods to alleviate the pressure of trying to produce an increased amount of high quality content without destroying your budget is to look to your users to create content for you. User generated content (UGC) is content on websites, blogs and social media platforms that is created by the users. Rather than have your team of writers develop the content internally and post it on your website, it is your followers, fans, and website visitors that create some of the content. User generated content can take on many different forms. They include: Discussion boards and forums Comments Wikis Blog Posts Social Media engagement Customer reviews Audio/video/multimedia User generated content has become extremely popular, case in point, two of the most popular websites in the world – YouTube and Wikipedia. Both of these sites are based primarily on user generated content and have become wildly successful using this model. Stay tuned for part two, which discusses effective user generated content strategies and the benefits of user generated content.


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