A content marketing productivity tool for faster content marketing
Little Bird - a great way to find and learn about key people online fast
If you spend time like I do, writing content for special interest groups online, then you probably love to hear about content marketing productivity tools that can help you optimise your time during the different stages of the content marketing continuum, and improve your return on content marketing effort (ROE).
Most of the marketing activity I do to grow my businesses is digital. That’s why I use tools that can help me identify influencers within special interest communities faster, but also help me create and promote the kind of content that will attract visitors to my websites and convert them into customers once they're there.
Little Bird is a tool that helps me automate the discovery of community-trusted topic influencers and experts on any topic, and once I find them, provides me with a whole bunch of very cool tools I can use to leverage their collective knowledge.
Using Little Bird to Identify Influencers
If, like me you write intensively about a narrow topic, you’ll know there’s only so much you can think to write about for your customer groups before you get writer’s block. So, at some point, you need to branch out and publish topics adjacent to your product and your buyer. In other words, you need to cast a wider net, and connect with new people on Twitter, blogs, LinkedIn, Google+ or elsewhere, and that’s where this little robot librarian comes into its own.
A content marketing example
Let’s say your company manufactures electrical wiring accessories like switches, cables and circuitry for the domestic and business construction sectors (homes, hotels, hospitals, offices). While most of your content will address the needs of electrical wholesalers, specifiers and contractors, you may also wish to capture the attention of architects, interior designers and decorators. But the chances are, you don’t yet know who these people are, what blogs they read, or what they care about. Little Bird's strength is that it can tell you not only who these insiders are, but also what topics they are talking about and what articles they are sharing.
Better content marketing faster
The strength of Little Bird is that it helps you get out of a rut and view content trends in adjacent content verticals. So, for instance whist researching content marketing opportunities for a client in the home electrical fixtures vertical I was able to look at content published by insiders in the residential design field and see the topics in “decorative lighting” and “smart homes” where new opportunities to market with fresh content to new audiences lie. By providing me with lists of the people who hold the most sway within these industry verticals Little Bird works as my cheat sheet to identify influential Twitter users, bloggers, brands and the content they are creating.
Tools to engage with influencers
Little Bird helps you learn about people and content in adjacent content verticals
Once you've mapped out the top people in your research field, Little Bird offers a number of tools for engaging with those insiders in your field of interest. One of the most interesting tools is the “Compare” tool, which can be found in the orange drop down menu labeled “Tools” in your dashboard (see above).
Here you can enter any Twitter username and Little Bird will show you the connections between that person and the list of top industry insiders, which enables you to check out how connected that person is in their industry, or to see instantly how unconnected that person or institution is.
There are several situations I’ve been in where this functionality is helpful, such as preparing for a sales call or a client pitch, when I need a quick snapshot, not just how influential the person I’m going to talk to is, but also how savvy they are in knowing about market leaders to follow on Twitter.
Also if I’m screening someone for a digital marketing role, I can benchmark that person’s online authority against a list of leaders in the relevant industry field.
Also, when I’m considering an industry conference, I like to check out just how influential the speakers really are among leaders in that industry.
Little Bird the spider bot
So, how does Little Bird compile these lists? Little Bird spiders out to find the network of social connections among thousands of community managers and then calculates which community managers command the most attention from their network peers, before the software sorts the network and returns the top 500 insiders validated by their fellow community managers.
If there’s a connected community on Twitter and blogs about a topic of interest, Little Bird can find it, map it, rank it, let you search inside it, and see its hottest news in about 10 minutes, which is hundreds of times faster than you or I could do the landscaping. Basically the Little Bird lets you concentrate on the higher-value creative work.
If you liked this post, you may be interested to learn about other tools I use to speed up the different stages of the content marketing process, which I'll be referring to in my forthcoming Smart Insights Webinar 6 Steps To Creating a Content Marketing Strategy on 14 June next. Save the date and register for free.
By Stephen Bateman
Stephen is the founder of Concentric Dots Ltd, a specialist content marketing agency helping small businesses in Exeter, Bristol and Plymouth get more customers by increasing their understanding of how real buyers really buy, and then giving them a solid framework to stand out in a crowded marketplace, and be more attractive than their competitors. His strengths are in customer profiling, buyer lifecycle mapping, content planning, content creation, and helping managers to be more productive with their social media and blogging, using tools and techniques that save them time and effort to achieve stand out marketing in a busy marketplace with limited resources.
Connect with Stephen via Smart Insights Marketplace Twitter, LinkedIn or Google+