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Transforming a 200-year old
media company
November 2016, Prag
@dominikgrau
Dominik Grau
Chief Innovation Officer
Ebner Media Group
• 2011-2015: Managing Director, Ebner USA
• 2007-2011: Director Online, IDG Germany
• 2006-2007: Editor in Chief, Burda (BurdaYukom)
• 2003-2006: Author/Trainee, Burda (Chip.de)
• 2002-2004: Research & IT, University of Munich
• 1995-2002: Website Projects, IT Infrastructure
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Special Interest Media
B2B Magazines
Webinars, Events
Product Database
Catalogues
Phone Books, Directories
Apps, Videos, Podcasts
We‘re a niche media company
In 2011 we were very profitable
but our business declined
If content is our core asset…..
…..do we treat it like this?
Are we really getting the
most out of it?
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Think about your White Target Group
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
What a tremendous waste of energy!
We did reach only a few readers due
to the physical limitation of our vehicle
Researching, Analysing, Testing, Traveling,
Interviewing, Photographing, Thinking, Writing,
Rewriting, Layouting, Printing, Shipping
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Don‘t try to innovate in old structures
•We reorganised the company
•Not the product, the community (= target
audience) is pivotal
•New structure, new hierarchies, new job
descriptions, new responsabilities
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Content and knowledge matters
They don‘t want ads
Deeply analyze your target group
•Analyze their search habits
•Monitor their social media habits
•Build personas
•Identify the influencers
•Create multiple touchpoints
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Essential Strategy: Unlock the power of MIUs
•Minimum Information Units (MIU)
•Every piece of content consists of many MIUs
•MIUs can be distributed widely
•They can be powerful tools to grow your reach
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
One Article = Tons of Content
•10 MIUs
•4 main text modules structured from 1 to 4
•1 interview
•4 abstracts
•1 checklist
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Print and Forget?
Recycling!!!
Write and
Reuse!
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
The Principle of Embedded Marketing
"As you know, the age of the Internet
has turned editors into marketers who
are responsible for their content.“
Don Nicholas, Mequoda Group
The editor‘s job: create the widest possible reach
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
„analyze!“ (the topic)
„define!“ (the channels)
„investigate!“ (the story)
„produce!“ (the content)
„market!“ (through all channels)
„measure!“ (your success)
What we tell our editors
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
An approach like this alienates a typical editor
We needed editors with a different
approach. People who were willing not
only to report but to contribute.
Transaction Editors (TE)
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Traditional Editor
- writes high-quality content
- has industry expertise, is widely respected
- helps new editors to create evergreens
New Role: Transaction Editor
- turns print content into digital evergreens
- works closely with traditional editor
- knows social media, videos, mobile, analytics
- manages paid content, shop products
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
The transformation resulted in a
profit growth of 71% vs 2014
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Evergreen Content is a key
element of our transformation
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Digital growth at a typical Ebner brand
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
News Evergreens
 Transformation = Focus on Evergreens!
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Evergreen Content?
Photo: Getty Images @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Evergreen Content!
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Ebner Evergreen Workflow & Tools
Illustration: Mequoda; Ebner @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
The 7-Step Evergreen Strategy
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Step 1: AUDIENCE – create personas
Step 2: KEYWORDS – identify & test topics
Step 3: SCHEDULE – daily, monthly, yearly
Step 4: UPDATE – every 90 days
Step 5: AMPLIFY – social media evergreens
Step 6: REPURPOSE – information units
Step 7: CONVERT – to e-mail & paid
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
• Analyze: find at least 2 potential audience groups
• Ask: why do they need, how/when will they read my content
• Goal: perfectly understand your audience’s world
• Result: description for each persona, assign names
Step 1: Define audience, create personas
Photos: Ebner Media Group
4 Ebner personas
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
From Personas to Channels
Hannah Halbtag Katja Kann-Alles Arne Anspruch Paul Passiv
Website
Dienstleistungen
Weekly NL
Needs
marketing how-
tos and know
how by experts
Wants personal
advice and
customized
content for C-
level readers
Needs
newsletters and
websites with
user-centric
content
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
• Research: find keywords (high volume, low competition)
• Reconfirm: Google Trends; Adwords sample check
• Retest: test social posts, analyze share patterns
• Ebner websites: up to 7,000 keywords, 300 topics
Step 2: Build keyword families, identify potential topics
Illustration: Mequoda.com @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Step 3: Create a content plan and 24-hour schedule
Daily Schedule
• 1 evergreen per weekday
• Publish morning or evening
Monthly & Yearly Plan
• 4 uber topics per month
• Strategic focus, seasonal
Photo: Getty Images @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
January 2017: Optimize full text, add photos/videos
October 2016: Minor updates, deep SEO review
July 2016: Add more text (100+ words)
April 2016: Add photos/videos/text (50+ words), SEO review
January 2016: First evergreen version (500+ words)
Step 4: Update every 90 days, promote across all channels
Illustration: Ebner Media Group @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
One evergreen = many amplifiable information units!
• 45-day policy: repost evergreen links every 45 days
• Facebook: retarget website users
• Twitter: share evergreen links
• LinkedIn: great for amplifying B2B evergreens
• Youtube: publish evergreen videos or slideshows
Step 5: Social media amplification schedule
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Step 6: Turn one evergreen into many evergreen pieces
Print
Website
Newsletter
Facebook
Youtube
LinkedIn
Twitter
ExternalBlogs
Wikipedia
AmazoneBook
Pinterest
PRPortals
1. FULL POST x x x
2. Excerpts x x x x x x x x x
3. Illustrations x x x x x x x x x x
4. Key Facts x x x x x x x x x
5. Photos x x x x x x x x x
6. Audio x x x x x x
7. Video x x x x x x
Illustration: Ebner Media Group @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Step 7: Evergreens as conversion blockbusters
• Create Newsletter: automated updates, daily and weekly
• Convert users to e-mail: popup, scroll bar, sidebar boxes
• Goal 1: convert 1% of monthly uniques to newsletters
• Goal 2: convert 10% of email users to paid (after 1 year)
Illustration: Mequoda.com @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
CREATE
1) AUDIENCE
2) KEYWORDS
3) SCHEDULE
COORDINATE
4) UPDATE
5) AMPLIFY
6) REPURPOSE
CONVERT
to E-Mail
CONVERT
to Paid
Evergreen Conversion = Digital Growth & Revenues
Illustration: Ebner Media Group @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Enlarged Target Group
Core Target Group
(Collectors, Aficionados)
Magazine
Portal
Newsletter
Facebook
Youtube
LinkedIn
Xing (Germany)
Blogs
Company Homepages
Wikipedia
Amazon
Twitter
Pinterest
PR Portals
New Ebner = Evergreen Content & E-
Commerce
@dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Dominik Grau
Chief Innovation Officer, Ebner Media Group
Twitter: @dominikgrau
linkedin.com/in/dominikgrau
grau@ebnerpublishing.com
Thank You!

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Content marketing 2016 conference in Prague by Dominik Grau

  • 1. Transforming a 200-year old media company November 2016, Prag @dominikgrau
  • 2. Dominik Grau Chief Innovation Officer Ebner Media Group • 2011-2015: Managing Director, Ebner USA • 2007-2011: Director Online, IDG Germany • 2006-2007: Editor in Chief, Burda (BurdaYukom) • 2003-2006: Author/Trainee, Burda (Chip.de) • 2002-2004: Research & IT, University of Munich • 1995-2002: Website Projects, IT Infrastructure @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 3. Special Interest Media B2B Magazines Webinars, Events Product Database Catalogues Phone Books, Directories Apps, Videos, Podcasts
  • 4. We‘re a niche media company
  • 5. In 2011 we were very profitable but our business declined
  • 6. If content is our core asset….. …..do we treat it like this? Are we really getting the most out of it? @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 7. Think about your White Target Group @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 8. What a tremendous waste of energy! We did reach only a few readers due to the physical limitation of our vehicle Researching, Analysing, Testing, Traveling, Interviewing, Photographing, Thinking, Writing, Rewriting, Layouting, Printing, Shipping @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 9. Don‘t try to innovate in old structures •We reorganised the company •Not the product, the community (= target audience) is pivotal •New structure, new hierarchies, new job descriptions, new responsabilities @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 10. Content and knowledge matters They don‘t want ads
  • 11. Deeply analyze your target group •Analyze their search habits •Monitor their social media habits •Build personas •Identify the influencers •Create multiple touchpoints @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 12. Essential Strategy: Unlock the power of MIUs •Minimum Information Units (MIU) •Every piece of content consists of many MIUs •MIUs can be distributed widely •They can be powerful tools to grow your reach @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
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  • 19. One Article = Tons of Content •10 MIUs •4 main text modules structured from 1 to 4 •1 interview •4 abstracts •1 checklist @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 20. Print and Forget? Recycling!!! Write and Reuse! @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 21. The Principle of Embedded Marketing "As you know, the age of the Internet has turned editors into marketers who are responsible for their content.“ Don Nicholas, Mequoda Group The editor‘s job: create the widest possible reach @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 22. „analyze!“ (the topic) „define!“ (the channels) „investigate!“ (the story) „produce!“ (the content) „market!“ (through all channels) „measure!“ (your success) What we tell our editors @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 23. An approach like this alienates a typical editor We needed editors with a different approach. People who were willing not only to report but to contribute. Transaction Editors (TE) @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 24. Traditional Editor - writes high-quality content - has industry expertise, is widely respected - helps new editors to create evergreens New Role: Transaction Editor - turns print content into digital evergreens - works closely with traditional editor - knows social media, videos, mobile, analytics - manages paid content, shop products @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 25. The transformation resulted in a profit growth of 71% vs 2014 @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 26. Evergreen Content is a key element of our transformation @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 27. Digital growth at a typical Ebner brand @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 28. News Evergreens  Transformation = Focus on Evergreens! @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 29. Evergreen Content? Photo: Getty Images @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 30. Evergreen Content! @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 31. Ebner Evergreen Workflow & Tools Illustration: Mequoda; Ebner @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 32. The 7-Step Evergreen Strategy @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 33. Step 1: AUDIENCE – create personas Step 2: KEYWORDS – identify & test topics Step 3: SCHEDULE – daily, monthly, yearly Step 4: UPDATE – every 90 days Step 5: AMPLIFY – social media evergreens Step 6: REPURPOSE – information units Step 7: CONVERT – to e-mail & paid @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 34. • Analyze: find at least 2 potential audience groups • Ask: why do they need, how/when will they read my content • Goal: perfectly understand your audience’s world • Result: description for each persona, assign names Step 1: Define audience, create personas Photos: Ebner Media Group 4 Ebner personas @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 36. From Personas to Channels Hannah Halbtag Katja Kann-Alles Arne Anspruch Paul Passiv Website Dienstleistungen Weekly NL Needs marketing how- tos and know how by experts Wants personal advice and customized content for C- level readers Needs newsletters and websites with user-centric content @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 37. • Research: find keywords (high volume, low competition) • Reconfirm: Google Trends; Adwords sample check • Retest: test social posts, analyze share patterns • Ebner websites: up to 7,000 keywords, 300 topics Step 2: Build keyword families, identify potential topics Illustration: Mequoda.com @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 39. Step 3: Create a content plan and 24-hour schedule Daily Schedule • 1 evergreen per weekday • Publish morning or evening Monthly & Yearly Plan • 4 uber topics per month • Strategic focus, seasonal Photo: Getty Images @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 40. January 2017: Optimize full text, add photos/videos October 2016: Minor updates, deep SEO review July 2016: Add more text (100+ words) April 2016: Add photos/videos/text (50+ words), SEO review January 2016: First evergreen version (500+ words) Step 4: Update every 90 days, promote across all channels Illustration: Ebner Media Group @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 41. One evergreen = many amplifiable information units! • 45-day policy: repost evergreen links every 45 days • Facebook: retarget website users • Twitter: share evergreen links • LinkedIn: great for amplifying B2B evergreens • Youtube: publish evergreen videos or slideshows Step 5: Social media amplification schedule @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 42. Step 6: Turn one evergreen into many evergreen pieces Print Website Newsletter Facebook Youtube LinkedIn Twitter ExternalBlogs Wikipedia AmazoneBook Pinterest PRPortals 1. FULL POST x x x 2. Excerpts x x x x x x x x x 3. Illustrations x x x x x x x x x x 4. Key Facts x x x x x x x x x 5. Photos x x x x x x x x x 6. Audio x x x x x x 7. Video x x x x x x Illustration: Ebner Media Group @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 43. Step 7: Evergreens as conversion blockbusters • Create Newsletter: automated updates, daily and weekly • Convert users to e-mail: popup, scroll bar, sidebar boxes • Goal 1: convert 1% of monthly uniques to newsletters • Goal 2: convert 10% of email users to paid (after 1 year) Illustration: Mequoda.com @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 44. CREATE 1) AUDIENCE 2) KEYWORDS 3) SCHEDULE COORDINATE 4) UPDATE 5) AMPLIFY 6) REPURPOSE CONVERT to E-Mail CONVERT to Paid Evergreen Conversion = Digital Growth & Revenues Illustration: Ebner Media Group @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 45. Enlarged Target Group Core Target Group (Collectors, Aficionados) Magazine Portal Newsletter Facebook Youtube LinkedIn Xing (Germany) Blogs Company Homepages Wikipedia Amazon Twitter Pinterest PR Portals
  • 46. New Ebner = Evergreen Content & E- Commerce @dominikgrau // grau@ebnerpublishing.com
  • 47. Dominik Grau Chief Innovation Officer, Ebner Media Group Twitter: @dominikgrau linkedin.com/in/dominikgrau grau@ebnerpublishing.com Thank You!

Editor's Notes

  1. These are the 7 steps you will need to learn to become an evergreen master. You will define your audience, set the topics, create a schedule, update the content, amplify via social media, repurpose on other channels and lastly, you will convert evergreen readers into paid customers! Every step is the base for the next. So don’t skip one when trying out the evergreen strategy!
  2. Our teams try to get a holistic perspective on the audience they’ll be writing for. We start with building personas, that is: a precise description of a specified audience group, with a name and a photo. Atop of this slide you’ll see 4 of the Ebner personas we use every day. We try to fully understand why, how and what for they will use our evergreens. That changes the tone of the content! An evergreen for a young marketing manager is very different from the same evergreen written for a marketing vice president.
  3. We only write for topics that have been discovered based on data and analytics. First, we go to SEO tools like Searchmetrics to look for topics that have a high annual search volume and low competition scores. Google Trends will help us to add trend patterns. We then reconfirm the keywords by checking against Google Adwords results to see the ad prices and environments. Once we’re confident that we’ve found a new topic we’ll build large universes with thousands of keywords. They will be clustered into topical groups, some of the groups will be included in a meta groups. If you want to learn more about building great keyword universes talk to the guys at the Mequoda Group – they are amazing!
  4. Now we’ll create schedules, one for every weekday and one for the whole year. While the daily routine takes into account single keywords and smaller groups the yearly plan will focus on uber topics and many keywords. The daily is derived from the yearly schedule. News are included in the daily schedule but only on a secondary base and every news must link to at least one evergreen.
  5. Updates are the core essence of an evergreen’s success. The first time we publish the content we push it out via newsletters, social and on PR channels. We’ll do the same whenever we update each evergreen during the quarterly cycles. Essentially we’ll be refreshing every evergreen once a quarter to make sure it stays relevant and delivers constant audience engagement. Every update needs to get pushed out to newsletters, the website and to all social accounts again. This will reinforce the audience engagement.
  6. We love to use tools like Hootsuite to deliver the content to dozens of social channels. We also have an update schedule just for social media. Every 45 days we’ll reshare each evergreen on our social accounts. We’ve found that as great add-on to this strategy Jon Loomer’s retargeting method for Facebook works great. Here you’ll be retargeting your website visitors on Facebook to convert them to e-mail subscribers. On Linkedin we deliver evergreen links, excerpts or full contents to distribute them via the accounts of our employees.
  7. We break each evergreen content apart into many pieces. MEASURE every piece at every channel. One long evergreen is a great resource for many smaller contents. So what we’ll do is taking content excerpts, photos, iillustrations or key facts from the evergreens to distribute them on many channels. Here you see a sample evergreen matrix that shows you how and where we distribute each evergreen.
  8. Now it’s time to convert our evergreen readers to e-mail subscribers. Go to sumome.com and install a welcome popup that shows up after 2 seconds on your evergreen, then launch a Sumome scrollbar that’s permanently on your websiteNext you go to addthis.com and sign up for their exit popup. With mailchimp.com you’ll create a fully automized newsletter that’s driven via RSS. Mailchimp pushes out a newsletter with links to the evergreen updates and to all new contents.