Kelsey Libert Outreach and Relationship Building

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The goal of Blogger Outreach is to build authentic links that point from top tier publishers to your client’s content. Achieving this goal starts at the core of content marketing: the generation of …

The goal of Blogger Outreach is to build authentic links that point from top tier publishers to your client’s content. Achieving this goal starts at the core of content marketing: the generation of viral content ideas. In this session you will learn how to create viral content ideas, build mutually beneficial relationships, spread more engaging content, generate high valued links, and minimize the noise in the era of content marketing.

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  • Hello and welcome to Blogger Outreach and Relationship Building! My name is Kelsey Libert, and I’d like to start with an audience question – by a show of hands, “How many people here have some form of content marketing in their strategy?” Whether its for your own sites, or clients. Okay, I’d say that’s a market share of about ____%.
  • Based on Google Trends, that’s kind of what I was expecting. Were you? In this last year, content marketing has grown at an exponential rate. Due to the shake up by panda and penguin, it's obvious that this white hat initiative should explode. But, what does the content marketing explosion mean for the publishers- the ultimate gatekeepers for your link generation?
  • It means publishers are overwhelmed. The following Twitter conversation is with aSelf.com editor. Like many of you, Anna is drowning in emails. She receives over 150 emails a day, yet she reads or glances at half. Unfortunately, your pitch now has a 50%chance of just getting a glance, not even a thorough read - and that's if you're lucky.
  • If we take the time to pay attention, we see editors aremaking a public outcry. If you continue to spam publishers with mismatched, regurgitated content, your name now sticks out as someone to avoid.
  • And no, this isn't another Twitter rampage. These people are taking serious action by setting up keyword spam filters to block certain content pitches - especially infographics.
  • So, what do we do? We work from the ground up to establish mutually beneficial relationships, around content these publishers care about: timely, engaging and new information that speaks to their audience.
  • Today you will learn three crucial processes that form a successful content marketing strategy.
  • First up, “the secret of creating ideas that resonate with your audience.”
  • Seth Godin once said, "When everyone is playing the same game, your execution is critical." Well, we've proven that everyone is playing the content marketing game, so, how do you stand out?
  • You create ideas that resonate with your audience, not with your anchor text. Sticky ideas areunderstandable, memorable and effective in changing thought or behavior. There are six principles of sticky ideas, and while you don’t need all 6 - the more the better.
  • For starters, you definitely don't do this. Text heavy, lack of data visualizations, and poor design is not simple to digest.
  • These are getting a bit closer, since they're simple ideas that provide value to a broad audience.
  • Simple ideas are“succinct enough to be sticky, meaningful enough to make a difference.”Analogies are great,because you’re comparing new concepts, to something already known– which makes your message easier to understand.
  • For our ideas to endure, not only must we must generate interest and curiosity, but we must also have our audience experience "the aha moment."
  • Albert Einstein encapsulates this core principle with the following quote: "I have no special talents, I am only passionately curious." I identify with this, as does much of human kind. But, why?
  • Professors George Loewenstein (Carnegie Melon University)explains it as the "information gap theory of curiosity," which creates curiosity on demand. This theory is based on an innate human behavior that’s triggered when people feel there is a gap between what they know, and what they want to know. When people feel this gap, they are compelled to fill it by taking action, such as reading, engaging and spreading your content Source: http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2010/08/the-itch-of-curiosity/
  • Therefore, your content needs to create knowledge gaps. You can do this with curiosity based headlines, studies that disprove a common thought, etc.
  • Data is concrete and memorable, an abstraction or idea is not. Use actual events and case studies to make your ideas more concrete.
  • What you think is credible.
  • What is credible. Let's admit it, we'renarcissists sometimes . More often than not, we believe our knowledge is the most credible source. Our knowledge is credible because we learned it personally, it wasn't hear say, or outdated. So, what we have to do is involve our audience in the learning process of our message. Instead of shouting an idea at them, we engage the audience by having them be a part of the content learning process. The goal is to put your audience into the story with powerful details and testable credentials. Microsites are very effective at doing this.
  • Two Wharton marketing professors tangentially answered this question, when they pondered, “Why are certain pieces of online content more viral than others?” The study took a psychological approach to understanding diffusion through emotion.
  • Using unique data set of all the New York Times articles published over a three-month period, the two professors examined how emotion shapes virality.
  • These results hold even when the authors control for how surprising, interesting, or practically useful content is (all of which are positively linked to virality), as well as external drivers of attention (e.g., how prominently content was featured).
  • The Takeaway? Try to generate viral content ideas, you need to focus more on “Positive Content emotions,” such as Awe, Anxiety, Anger, and less ideas on “Negative Content emotions” such as sadness.
  • Stories: How do you get people to act on your idea? To do this, we have to take a key lesson from journalists. The best journalists create stories that understand and demonstrate what these facts mean to people. This is what you need to do with your content.
  • For example, let’s take a look these two identical Subway campaigns. These two campaigns had one message: “Hey, we’ve got 7 new subs with 6 grams of fat!” Can you tell which one was more successful? … It was the one that created a story, not just data.
  • Most stories naturally come with concrete, unexpected and emotional details. That is why Jared was such a successful campaign – because it created a story, and in turn, the six points of SUCCESs.
  • So, that’s a wrap on the six principles for SUCCESs. You now have the foundation for creating content marketing ideas that will resonate with your audience, and naturally build links.
  • Next up, little known ways to leverage social media for outreach.
  • Due to relationship building and outreach, I have placed content with these top tier publishers – more than once, and with multiple editors at these sites.
  • How have I done this? Let me show you how you can do this, too.
  • For outreach, the real power is using Twitter to break down barriers with publishers.
  • For example, is someone like Brian Clark, Rand Fishkin, or Lisa Barone tweets you, you run full speed ahead, to respond on Twitter.
  • On the other hand, if one of these three users tweeted you, you could care less. Now, the epidemic. Every power player out there is great at tweeting their friends. But, how do you, the individual, get the attention of someone who doesn’t know your name? In the following slides, I’ll show you how I used 9 core principles to reach out to people I had no relationship with, and how I elicited a response.
  • #1. We remind people that we’re real people. Use Twitter to have a candid conversation, entirely unrelated to your pitch. For example, from having this candid conversation, I learned Rae Hoffman lived in FL for a decade, she now lives in TX, and we both have a deep hatred for palmetto bugs. The point? I’ve begun finding ways I could relate to her in a pitch. PS - Don’t underestimate the power of little facts – In section 3 of this presentation, I’ll show you the true power of the little details.
  • Entrepreneur probably wouldn’t of noticed me retweeting one of a hundred articles on their site. However, the original author may notice. Lesson: Tweet the article, but give credit to the author, not the publication. Even better, tweet the value you found in that post, while giving credit to both the writer and the publisher - this helps the writer look good, which the author may appreciate even more.
  • Third, append your personality. We’re in Internet marketing, a landmine of personalities. Instead of hitting RT, take that article and add your sense of humor, charm or input. Ultimately this shows that you’re a brain, and not a bot.
  • It’s very easy to RT a title and make it seem like you read a post. People see through that. Show you have a genuine interest by reading the authors content, and then pulling quotes or tips that you found useful. Avoid RT a title when possible.
  • Fifth, be timely. We all have a lot on our plates, but if you’re reaching out over something that was featured within the last week, you have a better chance of standing out. Even better, pull something that you can relate to your pitch.
  • Similar to pulling quotes, you can put input in with it, too! After all, who doesn’t like to hear that they’re right?
  • Tread carefully with lucky number 7. If you disagree with something the author said, you could be jeopardizing a relationship. That being said, voicing an opposing position is a great conversation starter!
  • Speaking of getting a discussion going, what better way than to ask questions? Expand upon their story by asking a question based on their content.
  • Above and beyond anything else, you need to get to know the author. As mentioned earlier, candid conversations are a great for finding facts on your contacts. But, sometimes you can go straight for the gold an ask a personal question. Ego bait is a great way to learn about someone.
  • So, now you know how to engage with publishers who don’t know you. But, what other ways can you use social media for outreach?
  • For one, you can use social media to find emails. However, use this as a last resource once you’ve exhausted mailtester/cision/buzzstream etc.
  • Do follow up. If you didn’t get a response, it could be due to an overloaded inbox, or strict spam filters. Try reaching out on Twitter again.
  • Heck, even link recon through social media works. Just be polite, and most people are happy to credit you for your work.
  • Lastly, and most important: use social media always to build relationships BEFORE the pitch. NEVER use social media to do the pitching.
  • So, at this point, you now have a foundation for creating ideas that will resonate with your audience. With initiatives in hand, you did social outreach to gain attention around your name. Finally, you have to neatly package your great content with your relationship building, into a delicate pitch that could seal the deal, or permanently ban you from someone’s inbox.
  • So, how do you write a winning pitch? The key message here is: 100% tailored - no templates, no automation. Now, while each email must be different, there is a general foundation you can build off of.
  • Blogger outreach is a form of online sales. No -- don't cringe, rejoice! Sales tactics are not tricks, they are methods for proving value. For example, AIDAS is one of the founding principles for sales. Do you see how this could apply to outreach?
  • I tailored the ADIAS principles to form the blogger outreach equation. Awareness is done through Social engagement + Interest is built by the quality of your Content + and Desire is the Mutual Benefit your content will provide by engaging their readers = which In turn leads to Action and if done right, Satisfaction
  • In the email I listed earlier, I built awareness by tweeting the author whose article was sourced, before I reaching out. Then I built interest Interest by tailoring my subject line to appealto his appeals to ego: “Title of Content – [Exclusive] Source: Author Name. Lastly, I established desire by mentioning it was an exclusive study, that built off of a story where my contact was the #1 source.I also made sure to include a personal touch, which makes a world of difference to publishers who receive over 150  pitches a day. As I said, this ended in an action of a placement on The Motley Fool, which thereafter was syndicated to Daily Finance, and trickled through the financial blogosphere on its own.
  • Another helpful sales principle is the buyer decision making process. Your goal is to complete this process, in an email. Problem Recognition. It is your job to create the problem recognition. You do this by finding gaps in the content on the publisher's blog.Information Research. Once the problem is realized, the editor will launch into information research. Now, you step in to save the day, by filling the void with your valuable content.Search for Alternatives. If possible, you can provide them with multiple pieces of content so they can choose their favorite. This gives the person a greater sense of ownership.Evaluation of Alternatives. Help your contact evaluate your content  on the fly by providing 1-2 quotes or fun facts from your content. Demonstrate how your content will meet their demands.Purchase Decision. You don't close a sale without asking for it. At this point, ask for their feedback or approval on your content.Post Purchase Evaluations. Follow up to review how well your content did on their site, and keep the connection open for future pitches.
  • Throughout this process you can also use surprise, testimony, flattery, product, curiosity, contrast.
  • In order to make a sale, you need to ask for it. Always close an email by asking for a response. Request feedback,Exclusive collaboration,Provide a deadline for response
  • Series of acceptances: Get the publishers to keep saying "yes.” Impending event: fear of missing out.
  • Elmer Wheeler is a famous salesman that developed the Secrets of Selling. He provided two great takeaway quotes for this presentation. One: Don’t sell the steak, sell the sizzle. Sell the benefits of your content, not the content itself. For example, it’s benefits could be: evergreen content, controversial content that will engage the readership, an exclusive study they can break the story on, etc.
  • And, Don’t ask if – ask which! Closing on choice is a great way to give the publisher ownership over their choice, and the ability to pick the content that would be best for their blog. Even better, collaborate with the publisher before you even develop the content – and provide them with these same choices. Also, asking open ended questions is great for getting a response.

Transcript

  • 1. Blogger Outreach & Relationship Building@KelseyLibert, CDA Diverse Media Company
  • 2. With the rapid adoption of content marketing, editors are overwhelmed.
  • 3. Their inboxes are flooded Self.com EditorAt best, only half of her emails get a glance
  • 4. So, They’re Taking ActionIf you spam publishers with mismatched, regurgitated content, your namenow sticks out as someone to avoid.
  • 5. … They’re taking serious action Editors are using keyword spam filters to block certain content pitches – especially, infographics.
  • 6. So …. What Do We Do? We work from the ground up to establish mutually beneficial relationships, around content the readership cares about.
  • 7. Today You Will LearnI. The Secret of Creating Ideas that Resonate with Your AudienceI. Little Known Ways to Leverage Social Media for OutreachI. How To Close Email Pitches using AIDAS
  • 8. I. The Secret of Creating Ideas that Resonate with Your Audience
  • 9. “When everyone is playing the same game, your execution is critical.” - Seth Godin
  • 10. • Simplicity• Unexpectedness• Concreteness• Credibility• Emotions• Stories• S
  • 11. Simplicity: How do you strip an idea to itscore without turning it into a silly sound bite?
  • 12. Unexpectedness: How do you capturepeoples’ attention… and hold it?
  • 13. “I have no special talents,I am only passionately curious.” – Albert Einstein
  • 14. Concreteness: How do you help people understandyour idea and remember it much later?
  • 15. Concrete = Case Studies > Ideas Case Studies Ideas
  • 16. Credibility: How do you get people tobelieve your idea?
  • 17. What You Think is Credible
  • 18. What Is Credible
  • 19. http://www.thenationalhonestyindex.com/ 280 Million Total Impressions 160 Press Stories $2.79 Million in Earned Media Double-digit growth in each city where they held their experiment.
  • 20. Emotional: How do you get people tocare about your idea?
  • 21. Virality is Partially Driven by Physiological ArousalEmotions Wharton Study
  • 22. • Content that evokes high-arousal emotions is more viral. • (+) Awe • (-) Anxiety, Anger• Content that evokes low-arousal emotions is less viral. • (-) Sadness
  • 23. Positive Content Awe, Anxiety, Anger is More Viral thanNegative Content Sadness
  • 24. Stories: How do you get people toact on your idea?
  • 25. Simple: Visual messageUnexpected: Man loses 245pounds in a year, eating fastfoodConcrete: This image servesas testimony, and clings toyour memoryEmotional: His weight wasdebilitatingStory: It’s Jared’s fight forhis life
  • 26. SEOmoz meme creditWe’ve established the foundation of ideas that will resonate with your audience,and naturally build links. Next up: building awareness.
  • 27. II. Little Known Ways toLeverage Social Media for Outreach
  • 28. Due to relationship building and outreach, I have placed content with thesetop tier publishers.
  • 29. How have I done this?Let me show you how you can do this, too.
  • 30. Break Down Barriers Using Social Media Next up: 9 Tips for Crafting Tweets that Get a Response, from someone you don’t know.
  • 31. If someone like …. tweets you: Photo Credit
  • 32. But, if someone like … tweets you: Photo Credit
  • 33. 1. We Remind People, that We’re Real People Then don’t go right for the pitch.
  • 34. 2. Give Credit to The WriterGive credit where credit is due.
  • 35. 3. Append Your PersonalityShow that you’re a brain, not a bot. Append your opinion, or sense of humor.
  • 36. 4. Use Quotes from the ArticleShow you have a genuine interest, by reading the authors content.
  • 37. 5. Be TimelyPick something that has been written within the last month, and if possible, isrelevant to your pitch.
  • 38. 6. Explain Why You Agree with Their Opinion If you engage with their content, they may engage with you.
  • 39. 7. Provide an Opposing OpinionDon’t be aggressive, but get the discussion going.
  • 40. 8. Ask Questions About Their Content Speaking of getting a discussion going, what better way than to ask questions?
  • 41. 9. Get to Know the AuthorAbove all else: get to the know the person behind the author.
  • 42. Social Media Do’s and Donts
  • 43. Do: Use Social Media to Find Emails Forbes EditorEntrepreneurEditor Offer that they DM you their email so it’s private. This also shows you care because you’re willing to follow them first.
  • 44. Do: Follow Up
  • 45. Do: Link Recon through Social MediaTry to reach out via email first, use social media as a secondarymethod to claim link attribution
  • 46. Do: Use social media to build relationships, never to pitch. Pitching in 140 characters? Just don’t do it.
  • 47. That’s a Wrap on Social!Now go get ‘em you sophisticated socialite! Now go get ‘em you sophisticated socialite!
  • 48. III. How To Close More Email Pitches using AIDAS
  • 49. Blogger Outreach is SalesA valuable salesperson builds mutually beneficial relationshipsand provides the customers with what they need.
  • 50. The Blogger Outreach EquationAwareness (Social) + Interest (Content) + Desire (Mutual Benefit) = Action By using the blogger outreach equation, I secured a placement on a financial blog with over 3 million unique visitors a month. But, how?
  • 51. The Blogger Outreach Equation, In ActionAwareness(Social):Tweeted the author whose article was sourced, before I reaching out. Interest (Content):Subject line appeals to ego, Desire (Mutual Benefit): “Title of Content – Exclusive study, where the [Exclusive] Source: Author contact is the #1 source. Name
  • 52. Your Goal Is to Create the Following
  • 53. How to Prove “Need Recognition: Why” 1. Need Recognition: WhyWhy the publishers audience would want to see your content 1. Advantage “I have an exclusive study.”“I noticed your readers were very engaged with this topic.” “This week in the news…” Remember timely content is best
  • 54. Information Search and Evaluation of Alternatives 2. Information Search: How How the publisher doesnt already cover this content, but should 2. Proof "Here is how my piece of content shows your audience what they didnt know about X.” “I see you’ve covered ABC, well, XYZ expands on this.” “You can see the success of an an earlier piece we did here.” Prove with interesting, hard facts that can be found within your content.
  • 55. Asking for the Sale: Purchase Decisions 3. Evaluation of Alternatives: WhatWhat revealing information your content offers, that isnt already known 3. Action “Did you complete a new study?”“Are you taking an opposing angle to what’s out there?” In order to make a sale, you need to ask for it.
  • 56. Examples of closing 1. Closing on Choice. "Which do you prefer, article 1 or 2?" 2. Series of Acceptances "Do you think this content would engage your readers?” “Do you think this piece is timely?” “Would you be interested in the exclusive?” 3. Impending Event"I’d love to partner with you on the exclusive, but I can only offer it to you for a week." 4. Trial Order "See how this post does, if it does well, we can partner on a full time basis.” Your closing paragraph should incite action.
  • 57. Don’t Sell the Steak, Sell the Sizzle. The takeaway? Dont sell your content, sell its benefits.
  • 58. Don’t ask if – ask which!Dont ask yes or no questions, ask for a choice, or open-endedquestions.
  • 59. So, stop worrying about this. Thanks Melissa Fach Matt Cutts Meme Monday
  • 60. Start Doing This
  • 61. @KelseyLibert www.KelseyLibert.comContent Development Officer Diverse Media Company