Tuesday, August 31, 2021
The Opinionated Blogger: Blog Content That Expresses Your Point of View
Tuesday, August 17, 2021
4 Kinds of Content Marketing That Can Boost Your Business
The world of marketing seems to grow more complex every day. Like some many-headed mythical beast, a modern-day marketing campaign often makes use of multiple media channels and platforms, not to mention multiple kinds of content, to draw their target audience into their sales funnel. With so many kinds of content marketing to choose from, which ones are most likely to make a difference in your success? Let's look at four powerful traffic drivers worth considering.
1. Blog Posts
As I've pointed out in the past, your company blog can give you an online voice that constantly reinforces your online authority and relevance as a major player in your industry. Certain types of blog posts can prove especially effective in this regard. For instance, list posts have grown immensely popular for their ability to pack several compelling points into a shareable, easy-to-digest format. (Look no further than this very post for an example.) These points don't have to well up from the depths of your own imagination; you can collect compelling bits of data from all over the Internet, if need be. I've seen entire posts that consisted simply of inspiring quotes related to a particular topic. You can also interview celebrity guests or invite them to blog on your site.
Infographics combine written content and visual design into a uniquely user-friendly package. How many times have you found yourself zeroing in on a helpful infographic embedded in a larger article or web page? Just as you don't necessarily have to write all your own blog content, you don't have to have graphic design skills to create infographics for your content marketing campaign. Your copywriter can work with the graphic designer of your choice to produce infographics that make a big splash with your potential buyers.
3. Long-Form Guides
Nothing demonstrates a business's expertise more thoroughly than a detailed, practical guide that helps people understand a concept or solve a problem. These guides often take the forms of eBooks, industry reports, white papers, quarterly newsletters, or plus-sized articles. You can make these pieces available in return for the interested party's contact information or subscription. This approach builds your prospect lists and helps pre-qualify leads, especially if you end up sending your subscribers a steady stream of helpful information.
Did you know that people spend one-third of their online time watching videos? This form of content marketing can entertain, enlighten, and compel sales just as effectively as others that rely on writing and graphic design. Just about anything you can convey through a blog post, infographic, or guide can prove equally effective in video format. Just don't make the mistake of assuming that you can simply take some video footage, slap a voice-over narration on it, and call it a day. Videos require careful organization and structure, with narration that really sells and graphic images that support the moving pictures and reinforce your brand identity.
There are plenty of other kinds of content marketing that I could (and very well may) write about in future posts. For now, however, these four key types of content marketing should keep you busy and boost your revenue. Contact me if you need help bringing your content to life!
Tuesday, August 3, 2021
Working With a Copywriter? Remember These 3 Tips
Congratulations on hiring a freelance copywriter! This skilled, experienced professional should greatly enhance the effectiveness of your marketing content while also freeing you from the burden of writing that content yourself. Just keep in mind that your experience, and your final result, can only go as smoothly as your interactions with this expert will permit. If you want to get the most out of working with a copywriter, take heed of the following four helpful tips.
Tip 1: Discuss the Process
Different copywriters have different ways of working, so don't assume that your experience with your current copywriter will necessarily follow the same process as any previous experiences you may have had with others. Always ask plenty of key questions in your initial conversation. How much does the writer charge, and on what basis? What's the schedule for making those payments? How long will it take the writer to deliver a first draft and any revisions? What materials do you need to give the copywriter before the work can start? What other professionals (web design team, SEO specialist, etc.) do you need to copy on all communications with your copywriter? Make sure you're clear on all these points right from the beginning.
Do you want to engage your copywriter to address recurring content needs, such as weekly blog posts or content for a quarterly newsletter? If so, you need to work out a long-range editorial calendar that clarifies exactly what content you want and when you want it. Ideally, you and your writer can hash out a whole schedule of article topics and delivery dates to prevent any last-minute scrambles or crossed signals. You can always adjust the details as you go -- but only if you set those details down first.
Tip 2: Consolidate Your Feedback
In an ideal world, your copywriter will deliver such a brilliant first draft that you see no need for any changes. But even if you and your writer communicated like a dream throughout the initial phase of the project, you may still see little bits and pieces in the text that require tweaking. You may also need to include some additional point that you forgot to tell the writer about or only just discovered during the composition of the draft. Most revisions can easily accommodate these changes. However, if your changes actually change the scope of the project, don't be too surprised if your writer has to charge an additional fee to reflect the new work.
Try to avoid the "committee rewrite" if you can. You might have no choice but to send the draft past multiple respondents, each of whom may make contradictory rewrite requests. This approach can cause two major problems. First, you may have to sit on those comments forever until everyone has chimed in. Second, you may end up sending your writer little constant dribbles of comment after comment, creating a state of perpetual revision. Make sure all the necessary comments go through one person, who can then coordinate them into one cohesive set of requests. Require all parties to submit their comments within a set timeline.
Tip 3: Keep the Ball Rolling
That set timeline I mentioned above will help you follow this third tip. Don't let a copywriter's first draft or revised version go unnoticed once you have it. I've had clients who sat on a project for weeks or months before finally replying with revision requests -- by which point, I'd moved on to the next project without even remembering much about the previous one. Sitting on content forever (as opposed to requesting changes promptly or indicating your acceptance of the content as is) may also hold up the work of your web designer, blog manager, graphic designer, or other professionals who need that final approved content before they can finish their work.
Make these three tips part of your overall plan for working with a professional copywriter, and you'll always get exactly the content you need, on time and on budget. Contact me to learn more!