Content Marketing“Everything Becomes an Inspiration” By Andrea Kalli
Summary • Variety of Content Types • Why create content and publish it online? • Where will your content go? • What are the biggest obstacles keeping you from creating and posting content? • How often should you post content? • Setting expectations on your return of investment • Content types • Steps in Getting started
Summary • Importance of Keyword Research • Content Gathering and Preparation tools • Where do the ideas come from? • Writing and Posting tools • Outsource the writing • Content repurposing ideas • Ways to Monetize Your Content • Distribution locations
Variety of Content Types • Written Text content – our focus today • Audio content – covered in another session • Video content – covered in another session
Why create content and publish it online? • “People do business with those they know, trust, and like” • Increase traffic to your site through search engine results pages (serps) • Establish your credibility and expertise • Virtually get to know your readers (content consumers) • Establish rapport and familiarity • Establish your brand • Your content is “out there” for a very long time and will continue to pull in traffic to your website and interest in your business. It’s the gift that keeps on giving.
Where will your content go? • Make no mistake, when I’m talking about posting your content, I am always referring to your blog first. • It should be your communications central. Your information delivery portal. Then you can include other content sharing sites into the mix. • Ideally you’ll push your content to other places for more reach, such as social networks. • Your blog is a tool to get attention. Attention that you hope to convert into something else (be that sales, opportunities, or just important conversations).
What are the biggest obstacles keeping you from creating and posting content? • “I don’t know what to write about” • “Nobody wants to hear what I have to say, anyway” • “I’m not good at writing” • “I don’t have the time to write articles or create content” • “Posting and publishing is too complicated, a nuisance, or time-consuming for me”
How often should you post content? • It’s common to set a goal for how often you should be posting content. Otherwise, it’s too easy to let your overall goal for the year slip away. • A nice attainable goal is once a week. That works out to 52 posts per year. • If you’re just starting out and the thought of publishing weekly content is overwhelming right now, then cut that in half. But no less. • Make a commitment to your business and your content marketing strategy.
Setting expectations on your return of investment • Be realistic. A solid content strategy can take months before you begin to see an increase in traffic and new interest in your business. 6 months is good, but it could be longer. • Remember, you’re in this for the long haul. • Content Marketing is a long-term strategy.
Content types – both have their place in your content strategy • Evergreen content – readers will find value in it even if it’s 10 years old • Topical content – tied to current dates, events, and happenings
Steps in Getting started • 6 Steps to Creating Your Content • Concept – save a title for an article (idea gathering tools) • Start Writing – get your ideas down (idea gathering tools/desktop blogging software) • Create Media Content – take pictures, create audio/video • Consolidate – move it all to your desktop blogging software • Review/Editing – edit it all, print out and read • Post & Promote – get your article live & share it
Importance of Keyword Research • Start every content project with your keywords in mind. • If you haven’t done so yet, do your keyword research so you know what your market is typing into the search engines. • Keyword research tools • Market Samurai – desktop application • GoogleAdwords Keyword online tool • Wordtracker
Dedicate time each month to organize and prepare your thoughts, ideas, and content outlines. • Strive for every two weeks – about 4-8 hours each time for this
Content Gathering and Preparation tools • Editorial calendar – feed it using the following • Ideas Notepad • 3x5 index cards • Smartphone recorder • Portable digital recorder • Whiteboard • Big sticky-notes
Evernote.com - “Remember Everything” • Save your ideas, things you like, things you hear, and things you see. • Available for Windows, Mac, iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch, Android, Android Tablet, BlackBerry, Windows Phone 7, Palm Pre/Pixi
Evernote • You can email notes, snapshots, and audio clips to this address from your mobile phone or desktop, and have these notes instantly saved in Evernote. • There’s email client integration, where you can send email content directly to Evernote for further development. There’s now a new toolbar in my Outlook tab, “Add to Evernote”. Kewl!
Evernote Paid plan = $5/month • Bigger upload size, more storage • Team Collaboration features • Premium Support • LIVE DEMO AND PRACTICE EXERCISE OF EVERNOTE.COM
Where do the ideas come from? • We are our own worst enemy when it comes to developing out an idea. • Don’t talk yourself out of an idea for content until you explore all aspects of it. (how can it relate to your business, business ideals, business passion?) • Trust in your initial spark for an idea and build on it. • Remember the emotion your inspiration made you feel. • Not everything you write has to “rock their world”. • Show your personality and your fun side as often as you like. • Share a bit of yourself in your content as often as you like.
Where do the ideas come from? • Your services and your products • Subscribe to your favorite topic-related blog – email and/or RSS feed • Read. The more you read, the more you can write. Things spark your interest all the time. Use reading to keep your thoughts and ideas alive. • Organize interesting topics into email folders and/or RSS reader folders • Breaking News in your industry – Google Alerts
Where do the ideas come from? • Exercise #1:Let’s start filling in your Editorial Calendar • Holidays - US • New Year's Day: 1-1-2012 • Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. 1-16-2012 • President’s Day 2-20-2012 • Valentine’s Day 2-14-2012 • St. Patrick’s Day 3-17-2012 • Memorial Day 5-27-2012 • Independence Day 7-4-2012 • Labor Day 9-3-2012 • Columbus Day 10-8-2012 • Halloween 10-31-2011 • Veterans Day 11-11-2011 • Thanksgiving Day 11-25-2011 • Christmas Day 12-25-2011 • Awareness days , world events, federal holidays, international days, national holidays, public holidays, festivals. • Earth Day 4-22-2012 • Current events and Local events
Crazy, silly, lesser-known observation days • For the week of October 16-22th, 2011 • World Food Day 10-16-2011 • Boss's Day (or National Boss's Day) 10-17-2011 • National Clean Your Virtual Desktop Day 10-17-2011 • Evaluate Your Life Day 10-19-2011 • Get to Know Your Customers Day 10-20-2011 • Information Overload Day 10-20-2011 • Make A Difference Day 10-22-2011 • http://www.brownielocks.com/month2.html • Exercise #2 optional: enter these into your editorial calendar
Bonza Bottler Days • Bonza Bottler Day is celebrated once a month when the number of the month coincides with the number of the day (Jan. 1, Feb. 2, March 3, etc.). There are twelve of these in a year. • When the number of the year also coincides with the number of the day and month, there is reason to have a bigger celebration (more food, more friends and more decorations). This is called a Bodacious Bonza Bottler Day. • Next Bodacious Bonza Bottler Day: November 11, 2011 (11-11-11) • First officially celebrated on August 8, 1985, it is a day that friends and family have as a reason to enjoy life and get together every month. Easily adopted for your business. • http://www.bonzabottlerday.com/bonzabottlerday/ • Exercise #3 optional: enter the dates into your editorial calendar
Hot topics that your business can relate to • Celebrities in the news – can translate to topics you can somehow relate in your business.
Record Everything • If you speak at events, both live and online, RECORD IT! • If a live event you can either use the video as a demo of your knowledge and expertise, as well as showing your personality. • The video can be chopped up and you can create a montage of your presentation as incentive to hire you. • You can capture the audio from the video and provide the audio as snippets on your website to give your content some added personality and as a way to connect with visitors to your website. • The audio can be transcribed and highlights captured and used as Facebook Page posts, Tweets, and posts on LinkedIn. • Ideal for speakers as speaker demos.
Events you’re attending, or perhaps hoping to attend. • Anniversaries – not personal ones, but global ones,local ones, and business ones • when did you start your business? • Exercise #4: enter the date into your editorial calendar • Recently observed 10th anniversary of 9-11 • Opportunity for a reflective and thought-provoking article • Your birthday. • Exercise #5: enter it into your editorial calendar
Seasons – Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter • Relate your business and industry to the changing of the seasons. • Winter:December 22, 2011 12:30 A.M. EST • Spring: March 20, 2012 1:14 A.M. EDT • Summer: June 20, 2012 7:09 P.M. EDT • Fall: September 22, 2012 10:49 A.M. EDT • Winter: December 21, 2012 6:12 A.M. EST • Exercise #6: enter them into your editorial calendar • Ask your readers what they want more of.
Subscribe to a Blog Ideas service • Chris Brogan has one at http://www.chrisbrogan.com/blog-topics/ . Very affordable and will give you some great ideas and inspiration. • His latest service is geared toward a more complete ideas service for small business, at http://www.humanbusinessworks.com/landing/blogbiz . • Both of these are less than $10 a month each.
Idea-fest • Create a multi-part series • Example titles for a 5-part series (could be about one of your services) • “an introduction to [topic]” • “first moves in [topic]” • “interview with [person] about [topic]” • “a deeper dive into [topic]” • “wrapping up about [topic]” • Do 3 of these 5-part series in a year • 15 posts • Exercise #7: Jot down 3 of your services and begin to build your ideas. Enter them into your editorial calendar.
Provide answers to what people are asking • Answers to questions you get asked, questions you’ve answer via email, questions you see on forums. • How-to tutorials
Industry interviews • Industry product and book reviews • Top Tens – lists are awesome! • Monday Focus • Weekly Wrap-up for news related to your business • Monthly highlights for the news related to your business and industry. • Exercise #8: enter one of these near the end of each month in your editorial calendar.
Take inspiration from customer comments and feedback, maybe create a “best of comments for the month” • “10 Short Sentences That Sum Me Up”
“3 Books That Inspire Me” • Other Inspiration-driven ideas: have you been inspired by • a person, • a sign in a store, • a song on the radio, • a plugin you tried and loved, • a commercial on TV, • something you saw on the way to the office/store, • a piece of art or public sculpture, • the way the sunset shined on the lake you drove by, • how the early morning light sparkles on the snow, • the art your child or grandchild created in school this week, • the way your pet behaved this week. • You get the idea.
Relate a movie or TV show to your business. “How Virtual Assistance is like Fringe” • Exercise #9: review the Big Blog Ideas list and indicate at least 10 content ideas you are interested in writing about and add them to your editorial calendar. 5-10 MINUTES
Writing and Posting tools • Online • Google Docs – for collaborative writing. Supposed to be able to post to blog from Google Docs. • Dropbox – collaborate on documents with those you share them with. • Evernote online – premium plan offers collaborative online environment.
Desktop Writing and Posting tools • Windows Live Writer - http://explore.live.com/windows-live-writer • Insert images/videos/audios, assign categories and tags, schedule for later posting date, assign heading tags, assign image alt tags • Insert Files plugin - http://plugins.live.com/writer/detail/insert-files – FAB FEATURE: allows you to browse your computer for the file, and it uploads it for you to your blogging site. Great for including audio with your blog post. • DEMO AND PRACTICE EXERCISE
BONUS: Wordpress plugin – Audio Player – option to automatically convert any link to mp3 file to use the audio player. http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/audio-player/ • Microsoft Office Word 2007 and 2010 also have a Publish to Blog feature • MarsEdit (Mac) - http://www.red-sweater.com/marsedit/
Mobile devices • Smartphones – • not ideal for writing text, but there are other benefits such as voice recording features in a variety of apps. Combine that with the ability to easily email the recording to yourself for further content development. • Smartphone apps – Evernote, Dragon Dictation. • Evernote is a great app for gathering your thoughts and content inspirations for further development. DEMO OF EVERNOTE APP ON IPHONE • iPad – much easier to type on.
Wordpress publishing • Wordpress Editorial Calendar plugin - http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/editorial-calendar/ • The editorial calendar gives you an overview of your blog and when each post will be published. • You can drag and drop to move posts, edit posts right in the calendar, and manage your entire blog. • Got an idea? Create the beginning of your draft right in the Editorial Calendar and save it as a draft. • This makes it very easy for you to see the gaps in your content that’s currently scheduled. • DEMO, if time permits
Outsource the writing • Not a writer? No problem. Don’t have the time? No worries. • Partner with someone to take your outline and do the writing for you • Find a VA/writer and trade some services with them • Elance.com • Constant-content.com • Needanarticle.com • ecopywriters.com • textbroker.com • Seo-writer-pro.com • PLR sites – Private Label Rights • These are starting places for your content. • Easyplr.com • DIYplr.com
Content repurposing ideas • Turn groups of text posts into summary articles to post to article sites • Turn text posts into an ebook, a report, a whitepaper and offer as a free download for opt-ins, or as a paid product • Turn text posts into a powerpoint presentation • Turn the powerpoint presentation into a narrated video • Capture the narration from the video into a separate audio • Take a conference course you created and develop further for your membership site, your ebook, your text/video/audio ecourse.
2 Easy Ways to Monetize Your Content • Accompany the videos and audios with some worksheets, checklists, graphs, flow charts, and tip sheets and turn them into a paid product you can sell. • Include dedicated time with you in the “Gold” product and charge even more.
Distribution locations – after posting on your blog, of course • Slideshare.net • Scribd.com • Ezinearticles.com • Video sharing sites – • youtube.com, • vimeo.com, • dailymotion.com, etc. • Social networks – push blog content to them • Facebook Page • Twitter • LinkedIn
Resources • Article on using Evernote for Bloggers - http://michaelhyatt.com/how-to-use-evernote-as-a-blogger.html • Article on using Evernote, Live Writer, Picasa, and Dropbox for a better blogging process - http://www.hightechdad.com/2011/05/13/how-to-write-blog-efficiently-with-free-tools-like-evernote-dropbox-picasa-live-writer/ • Tutorial for blogging with Windows Live Writer 2011 - http://devilmustcry.com/blog/how-to-blog-with-windows-live-writer-2011-tutorial.html • Great plugins for bloggers using Windows Live Writer - http://devilmustcry.com/blog/14-windows-live-writer-plugins-for-professional-bloggers.html • http://devilmustcry.com/blog/dummies-guide-how-to-use-windows-live-writer-for-blogging.html