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Research into customer expectation and behaviour, quality and delivery method, when it comes to content marketing

B2B customers in the digital age have greater access to information. They are actively researching solutions and providers before engaging with a salesperson. As a result, content marketing is becoming more prevalent and receiving lots of investment. The interest in content marketing, however, has created tough competition and higher customer expectation. How can you make sense of all the trends in the content marketing world and make sure that your strategy will bring in results? [si_guide_block id="5651" title="Content marketing strategy guide" description="Read our 7 steps guide to content marketing for practical advice on how to develop a strategy to deploy content across all your online marketing. Less than half of businesses have a content marketing strategy, so get (and stay) ahead of your competition with our strategies."] Here are seven…

How do you create content that people actively look out for, and make sure that they’re able to find it?

Blog posts are great for your business. They drive traffic to your website, raise awareness for your brand and continue to generate inbound leads once they start ranking in Google – in theory, that is. In practice, it’s just as likely that your brand new blog post sees fantastic traffic numbers right off the bat...which die off quickly after the first week or so. In the world of SEO, or Search Engine Optimisation, we call this phenomenon the Spike of Hope – which degenerates into the Flatline of Nope. This is what it looks like. What’s happening here is: your traffic spikes after you publish and promote your blog post (on social media, through your…

What makes a successful blog? If you think the answer is number of views, you may or may not be right

Some blogs are there to convert, others to promote awareness and some are there to encourage conversation. Regardless of what your metrics are for judging a blog’s success, one thing is for sure, you always strive to improve your performance. Majority of bloggers and marketers are judging a blog post on an individual level. While it does provide information on best and worst performing blogs it does very little in informing your strategy going forward. [si_guide_block id="85104" title="Download FREE Resource – Top 10 common content marketing mistakes" description="Grow your audience and build interest and leads by avoiding these common mistakes. With so much content being produced, it's important your content marketing strategy cuts through. Our content marketing mistakes guide reveals the most common mistakes, but more importantly what to…

Chart of the day: Time is the biggest challenge when it comes to content marketing

Marketers have revealed time and quality are their biggest content marketing challenges according to research by Clearvoice. Time, content quality and creating content were the top three challenges, which suggest a perception of the number of resource marketers feel content needs. And right they are! Quality and effective content takes time, needs to be good quality and needs the appropriate resource to put aside this time and make sure it's great quality. Marketers recognise that it's quality over quantity and understand quality is the most important aspect. Production is also a big challenge for marketers, the resource involved in making it happen and getting it live and as someone who works full time in the production of content, it certainly is harder than you may think. …

How content marketing has evolved over the last decade

Content marketing has gone through a transformation over the past 10 years. As the pace of content marketing has grown exponentially, so too has the number of content marketing pieces being published online. This has led to a shift in the approach to content marketing and a continuous change of best practices. Taking cues from Google’s constantly changing algorithms, content marketers and SEO experts have changed their opinions on keywords, platforms, and the definition of quality. What started as a way to provide useful information to users slowly became a platform for link building and monetization. This has led to oversaturation and a generally lower standard of quality.

The current state of content marketing best practices advises against shallow and valueless content for the sole purpose of having content, opting instead for creating a content strategy which works towards…

The growing deluge of content means you'll need a plan to cut through the noise in 2017

In digital marketing, you've probably come across the statement "content is king" several times. Make no mistake that content is the lifeblood of every essential online marketing activity. Be it social media marketing, email marketing, SEO, or paid advertising - none of these departments will succeed without the development of quality content. A study by Demand Metric reveals that 78% of CMOs believe that custom content is the future of digital marketing. However, successful content marketing is an intricate process that requires a lot of research and planning. Below are the crucial steps you need to prepare your content marketing strategy for 2017:

1. Specify Your Business Objectives

In every business endeavor, you need to set specific goals and objectives that will guide your day-to-day activities and ensure you're right on track. First off, make sure you…

The number of social shares per blog post suffers from a massive 89% decline over the past five years

Mark Schaefer originally coined the term content shock 3 years ago. Since then we've seen a massive explosion in the amount of content produced - an almost seven-fold increase -but a huge crash in engagement with each post. An October 2016 study by TrackMaven analysed over 65,000 blogs and found that the number of blogs produced increased by 800%, but the number of social shares per posts crashed by a massive 89%. We can see this huge drop off in engagement is impacting brand's decisions - the number of articles published has plateaued since August 2015. In an attempt to cut through, brands have been driven to creating not just more, but longer content. The average number of words in each post increased by 100 words, to 750 words per post on average. But…
This post examines common reasons for content marketing failure and introduces a 7 step content marketing strategy framework to mitigate the problem

Many businesses are now actively using content marketing, but it seems that there is potential for these initiatives to fail. According to the Smart Insights - HubSpot’s  Managing Content Marketing Europe 2016 research as many as 72% of marketers rated their content marketing as "limited," “basic" or "inconsistent.” 

In another survey from the CMI examining content marketing usage and effectiveness, a mere 32% of those polled describe their organisation’s content marketing as “sophisticated or mature”, with just 34% saying they are effective. 

In the same report, conducted by Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs, the effectiveness of B2B…

Techniques to create a more customer-focused content plan

As marketers, we know the value of a good online presence. We often talk about the importance of Google and of understanding the algorithms that govern the way businesses appear and are ranked in the Google search results. But we rarely talk about the rules that govern the algorithms themselves. Since it’s inception in 1997, Google has strived to ‘organise the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful’. From Panda (content) to Penguin (links) and Hummingbird (semantics), algorithm updates are intended to help Google to identify those pieces of content which are most likely to meet the searcher’s needs. All of this culminates in a simple lesson for us all: If you want to be successful online, you need to provide the highest quality, most useful, most relevant content to suit your target audience’s needs. Online…

Key marketing tactics which come before your content marketing

Content marketing is the buzzword on everyones lips right now. For some, it's becoming an increasingly big part of the marketing mix. For others, particularly small businesses, it shouldn't necessarily be at the top of the list of priorities. The theory of content marketing is an attractive one – produce interesting and engaging content which will be shared by your audience, and wait for the leads to roll in. Done well, it's a very effective channel, however, it takes time, effort and even the most brilliant pieces can be hit and miss in terms of uptake. Sign up for Hubspot, Kapost, Marketo, or any one of the hundreds of content marketing platforms that are available, and you'll have all of the tools at your disposal for implementing content marketing.…