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Your Content Strategy is Broken--Here's How to Fix It

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Your Content Strategy is Broken--Here's How to Fix It

  1. 1. Your Content Strategy is Broken. Here’s How to Fix It. PRSA Fort Worth October 8, 2014 ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  2. 2. Your content strategy is broken. Admit it. ACH TE CONNECTIVITY
  3. 3. More noise than ever before ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  4. 4. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  5. 5. The stats • Only 38% of B2B marketers rate their content marketing as effective. • Only 35% of B2B marketers have a documented content strategy. • 54% of B2B marketers see producing engaging content as their biggest content marketing challenge. Source: Content Marketing Institute/MarketingProfs ACH
  6. 6. ACH And, you’re battling this… PRSA Fort Worth
  7. 7. How did we get here? ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  8. 8. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  9. 9. ACH PRSA Fort Worth Look familiar?
  10. 10. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  11. 11. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  12. 12. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  13. 13. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  14. 14. What do we do now? ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  15. 15. 1: Conduct a comprehensive content audit ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  16. 16. • Take stock of current content—across social channels o What content already exists? o What content does the client/company want? o What content do actual customers want? ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  17. 17. • What’s working? What’s not? • Review 3-4 competitors/brands you admire ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  18. 18. Look at the data ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  19. 19. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  20. 20. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  21. 21. BREAK: EXERCISE (10-15 minutes) Do you ever shut down ideas with a “we can’t do that, it will never get by legal”? Well, we’re now on the S.S. Communications and you’ve just thrown legal overboard! • Nothing is standing in your way now – what are the five most important stories customers need to hear, or would find most helpful? • What are the most important vehicles to get these stories out – OR – what new channels will you try now that no one is telling you no? • Now come back to reality: find 3 ideas on your paper you COULD actually work with legal to share publicly. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  22. 22. 2: Identify resources • In-house • Agency • Independent • Robots? ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  23. 23. In-House: Pros • Less ramp-up time • Knows your brand better • Quick access to internal SMEs In-House: Cons • Not always best resource • Existing political barriers may provide roadblocks ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  24. 24. Agency: Pros • Access to more “human resources” • Get much-needed outside perspective • All-in-one package Agency: Cons • More expensive • Longer dating cycle ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  25. 25. Independent: Pros • What you see is what you get • Big fish, small pond Independent: Cons • Just one person means…just one person • Lack of ongoing professional development ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  26. 26. Robots? • Wordsmith • 2,000 simple articles per second • Not as “robotic” as you might think • Boon to personalized content (or reports) ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  27. 27. 3: Create a content plan of attack ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  28. 28. First, ask yourself: What’s our mission? ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  29. 29. CREATE • Stories • Infographics • Visuals • E-books • Presentations • Lists • How-to guides ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  30. 30. Long-form content -> Micro-content ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  31. 31. Identify your “sources” • Internal SMEs • Organizational “connectors” • Customers • Vendors/Partners • Front-line employees • Customer service • Executives (Note: Further down the list) • Existing stories ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  32. 32. What about content YOU can create? • Round-up posts • Q&A from the sales team • How-to’s • Interviews (trade shows, events, etc.) • Book reviews • Lists (with stats to back them up) • Case studies • Summarizing comments ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  33. 33. You know who’s really good at this? ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  34. 34. BREAK: EXERCISE (10-15 minutes) We are surrounded by subject matter experts everyday, though our keen PR minds aren’t always given the license to celebrate their smarts. Time to change that. • Select a client or business unit and identify one really smart person you have met in that group. • Imagine you are charged with starting a brand blog to position them as an industry thought-leader. • What are the first five blog posts you’d write for that blog? Write headlines for those five posts. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  35. 35. 4: How are you going to distribute the content? ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  36. 36. DISTRIBUTE • Social • Email • Repurpose (LinkedIn publishing, Medium) ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  37. 37. Keep this in mind… ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  38. 38. You know who’s really good at this? ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  39. 39. 5: Do you plan to amplify your content? ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  40. 40. AMPLIFY • Social advertising • Sponsored content • Syndication ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  41. 41. You know who’s really good at this? ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  42. 42. 6: And finally, how do you measure? ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  43. 43. MEASURE • Google Analytics • Social signals • “Engaged time”/”Attention time” • Return readers • Visitor loyalty • Don’t forget: Email metrics ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  44. 44. ACH 44 Case study - Bike Walk Move PRSA Fort Worth
  45. 45. ACH 45 • What was our approach? o First: Build an online home base with more “consumer-focused” content (Bike Walk Move blog) o Use Facebook as our primary distribution channel (also distribute via new Bike Walk Move e-newsletter) o Amplify with targeted Facebook ads o Measure and tweak approach along the way PRSA Fort Worth
  46. 46. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
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  48. 48. ACH 48 PRSA Fort Worth
  49. 49. ACH 49 PRSA Fort Worth
  50. 50. ACH 50 WITH Facebook ad support. WITHOUT Facebook ad support. PRSA Fort Worth
  51. 51. ACH 51 Topic: Quicker to drive or bike in the city? Topic: More cost-effective to drive or bike? PRSA Fort Worth
  52. 52. ACH 52 PRSA Fort Worth
  53. 53. ACH 53 By the numbers o Blog traffic almost doubled year over year o Grew page from 106 likes to 1,720 likes in 9 months o Facebook top referral source o Facebook ads drove 33,960,248 impressions o CPC: $.61 o Spent: $8,983 o Bike/walk numbers spiked PRSA Fort Worth
  54. 54. BREAK: EXERCISE (10-15 minutes) Often times, you are asked to develop content to promote/support annual events that always come back around (trade shows, holiday sales, etc.) While challenging, it’s time for you to get outside your skill set. Imagine an annual event with your client/company and describe how it would look if the story were told as: o A six-second Vine o A top 10 list on BuzzFeed o An infographic for your blog o A Hyperlapse video on Instagram ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  55. 55. Content Cornerstones ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  56. 56. Don’t: Mimic what other brands are doing. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  57. 57. Instead: Stay true to your brand voice, values and mission. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  58. 58. Don’t: Play off popular social memes. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  59. 59. Instead: Create content your customers will find useful. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  60. 60. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  61. 61. Don’t: Promote meaningless holidays. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  62. 62. Instead: Amplify your customers’ best content. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  63. 63. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  64. 64. Don’t: Try to become the next Oreo. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  65. 65. Do: Become the next YOU! ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  66. 66. Don’t: Promote your products and services (too much) ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  67. 67. Do: Inspire your customers through powerful imagery ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  68. 68. Don’t: Talk about events only you care about. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  69. 69. Do: Tell rich, meaningful stories about the people who make up your company. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  70. 70. Don’t: Get too cute. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  71. 71. Do: Be a resource (and build brand affinity and trust) ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  72. 72. Don’t: Try to be Seth Godin ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  73. 73. Do: Write 3-5 different headlines for each post ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  74. 74. One last thing: …make sure metrics loop back to content teams. ACH PRSA Fort Worth
  75. 75. arikhanson.com @arikhanson arik@arikhanson.com ACH

Editor's Notes

  • The social media guru told me about the power of engaging content!
  • The social media guru told me about the power of engaging content!
  • Everyone wanted to follow Oreo…
  • And I mean EVERYONE.

    Use OLSON—Breaking Bad—Belize example One that worked, but metrics still suffered.
  • On trend—you were a part of the “cool” crowd
  • Some cats are just plain lazy…
  • Hit the pause button, reset expectations and conduct a content audit
  • What does your existing data tell you? Google analytics? Social shares? Comments on an existing blog? Social feedback/signals?
  • Patagonia example?
  • The key—create content that works for YOU. Sleep Number example—they create a lot of testimonial and how-to content.
  • Buffer
  • Use me as an example for LinkedIn

    Talk about Jeff Jones case study on LinkedIn
  • Is your site/wherever you’re pushing customers to optimized for mobile? Make sure it is, because a growing percentage of your customers are….
  • Communications Conversations as an example here – PR Daily, Ragan, B2C
  • Intel—sponsored content on the Verge. 10-part video series featuring people working with technology in different industries. Right fit (tech=Verge), good storytelling (video via mobile).
  • 63% of B2B marketers use web site traffic as their key metric to measure content marketing effectiveness.
  • Started with content we believed would resonate with our key audience (people who were biking/walking in Mpls—or people we WANTED to get biking/walking in Mpls)
  • Google Analytics told us people really wanted more bike maps and routes…

  • We used FB and FB ads as our primary social driver of traffic to the Bike Walk Move blog
  • Another content tactic: Make our boring numbers more interesting through infographics

    Built one big infographic, created a post around it and then, broke it apart and promoted each piece of individual content on FB and promoted it.

    Worked very well—got a TON of impressions/engagement from all the different posts

  • Don’t think the paid amplification mattered? Think again.

    These are typical numbers for posts we promoted and those we did not.
  • Notice how we wrote the headlines—and how that played off the visuals.

    Used these as conversation starters…
  • Thanks to Google Analytics research, we knew our fans wanted more maps detailing MSP bike routes—so we gave it to them by creating this map/grid that highlighted routes supported by BWTC.

    Using Facebook ads to promote maps we knew our audiences craved.

    1,564,645 impressions, CPC: $.31, $300, 106 new page likes, 48 likes, 13 comments, 32 shares
  • For Bike Walk Move, this was the annual data collection we talked about (we used infographics to tell the story differently, then distributed via FB and amplified)
  • This one was everywhere a couple weeks ago.
  • Metrics: 12 million views, 9,000 comments
  • Love what SWA does here in its “From the Window Seat” Pinterest board. Pinning fans/customers’ IG shots out their plane windows! Not trying to be anyone else than who they are.
  • Car companies go a little overboard with this…
  • Meanwhile, Gatorade is producing videos like THIS. One of the best videos I’ve seen this year by a brand. I could have seen a media company producing this.
  • We can’t all write pithy 150-word blog posts that will garner thousands of likes, comments and shares.
  • But, you can write headlines that will solicit more social interaction with your customers/stakeholders. Write headlines like the posts on Digg—they HAVE to be good to get on Digg and get voted up.

    Sources of inspiration for headlines: NY Post, HuffPo, Copyblogger, Cosmo
  • Share: Share total, engagement metrics, page views, etc

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