Content is the cornerstone of successful online marketing. As you begin to mature your content production, you will find that producing the material requires building a culture within your company that supports using this strategy. At Share15, we brought together a team of presenters who understand this need and put together talks about the maturing of the content production process.
Covering topics such as scaling content, content and the competition as well as the convergence of content with other aspects of online marketing, this track prepared attendees to take their content production to the next level. These were the exciting presentations to which we were able to listen.
The efficiency with which a brand can create the content it needs will impact its productivity and profit. For businesses to mature, they need to improve their ability to produce content at scale. They require a company culture that encourages the efficient development of the high-quality content that can be throughout the marketing campaigns. This also means learning to repurpose content to serve multiple audiences at different points of the buyer journey. A successful content scaling process knows how to create content efficiently and also leverage it for its maximum potential. To dive into this topic at Share, we heard from Kelvin Lee of a Financial Institution from Australia, Robert Reneau of Maxim Integrated, Allison Fedella of CareerBuilder and Jaime Peach of House of Fraser. Some of the important points they made included:
- to build a successful content brand, you want to ensure that everyone understands what content success can accomplish and what everyone needs to do to get there
- build a team that is transparent and centered around data
- create a content production process that focuses on collaboration and build morale by sharing successful results
- provide training and create a process that includes content repurposing
- scalability means teaching others how to produce content successfully
Content and the competition
Businesses everywhere are beginning to realize the value of content creation. According to the Content Marketing Institute, in 2014, 70 percent of B2B companies and 69 percent of B2C companies reported that they were making more content than they were in 2013. As the Internet becomes increasingly saturated, however, there will be increased competition for brands. With the Google algorithm updates that were oriented towards weeding out low-quality content, organizations are also recognizing the importance of high-quality content. This will make competition even more fierce. For brands to excel in this content battleground, you have to be familiar with your competition.
Knowing who your main competitors are and how well their marketing strategies are working can give you key insights into how to improve your own efforts. You can gain insights about your customers, about areas where you might be weaker and even untapped potential that can help give you an edge. For this session we heard from Pia Adolphsen of Network, Brad Beiter of Performics, Felipe Carreras of Best Western and Scott Lavelle of OpenTable. Their talks included some excellent insights and points that helped attendees walk away feeling confident such as:
- fill in gaps based upon a SERP analysis that lets you know what competitors are doing and where their strengths/weaknesses lie
- remember that the key to marketing is connecting and competing
- use competitors for ideas about how to create better content and what customers want to see, do not copy content
- remember that the quantity of content is not as important as the quality
- aligning content to what users want to see is vital
There is no mistaking that content has become increasingly interlinked with social and search marketing. In this key trifecta, each piece exerts considerable influence on the others, and the cornerstone is high-quality content. When you produce engaging content that provides value for your users, you increase the odds of that content being shared and passed around social media. From social media, you can attract more readers and more backlinks, which will then boost your quality and engagement metrics as measured by Google. As your content rises on the SERPs, you then increase its visibility and the likelihood of more readers finding it and sharing it on social media. Search, social and content form a cycle that work together to improve the rankings of content. For brands to boost their visibility and traffic, they must learn how to leverage the full trifecta. At Share15 we heard from Deborah Carver of Nina Hale, Inc, Michael DeHaven of Bazaar Voice, Richard Mastriani of Wyndham and Suzanne Szostak of Google. These three offered fantastic tips and advice for brands looking to learn how to use this cycle including:
- 70 percent of searches are discovery-oriented
- you can increase traffic by 4x - 9x by moving into the top 3 for target keywords
- use Data Cube to find new keywords and create content around those words
- use multiple channels to support content such as paid social traffic, social media, etc
With content providing the cornerstone, organizations have the potential to create dynamic online marketing strategies that can engage potential customers wherever they might be online. Our presenters at Share15 did a fantastic job of providing attendees with the insights they need to make the content marketing track an insightful and engaging few days.