So today is April 1, which usually means we’ll try to feed you some stupid joke that will just make you roll your eyes when you realize the date. Not this time, internet. Brian kicked things off on Monday with three ways to get links that you haven’t heard 20 million times from people whose websites have no links. Plus he gets a little snarky, which you never want to miss. On Tuesday, our friend Jon Nastor showed us how we can actually get listeners for our podcasts . It’s a useful thing to know, since the #1 question on the minds of new podcasters is: “For the love of all that is holy and good, is anyone ever going to hear this thing?” And on Wednesday, Loren Baker helped you figure out why your site is slower than a slug on Xanax … and how to fix it . Seriously, there’s moss growing on that thing. Moving to the podcasts: On The Showrunner, Jerod Morris and Jon Nastor discussed sponsorships and affiliate marketing . On Copyblogger FM, I considered the fine balance between being precise with usage and grammar … and just being an annoying jerk . And on Unemployable, Brian Clark talked conversion optimization with Talia Wolf. “Conversion optimization” is another way of saying, “People will actually buy what you are selling,” so don’t miss that conversation. That’s it for this week … enjoy the goodies, and watch out for April Foolery! — Sonia Simone Chief Content Officer, Rainmaker Digital Catch up on this week’s content by Brian Clark by Jon Nastor by Loren Baker by Sonia Simone by Brian Clark by Kelton Reid by Jerod Morris & Jon Nastor
How NFL Players could challenge Fox News
Wiretapping Trump Tower. Fake News. The Press is the Enemy. Much of the rhetoric that makes its way onto the Twitter feed of Donald Trump comes from a single source: Fox News. It is the single and only outlet that will not only give him fodder for his Tweets to distract us from the important issues, but also provide him a medium for him to sell his radical programs and executive orders. Without it, he has no communication vehicle; if Fox News stopped providing him and outlet and content the rug would be pulled out from under his feet, communication-wise. So if we, the resistance to the Machiavellian President Trump, really want to affect change we need to start going after his mouthpiece, Fox News. Having them playing “fair and balanced” with their news and cutting off Trump from the distractions he throws out would force the White House to start addressing the real issues. It’s a tall order: Fox News, and its owner Rupert Murdoch are formidable; it’s going to take a lot more than just protest from people on Reddit to make them change their stripes. The resistance is going to need a powerful ally; fortunately, there is one waiting in the wings. The NFL. NFL games are a rainmaker for Fox; they make more money broadcasting these games than anything else: according to Ad Age , a commercial during an NFL game costs $689,225 per 30-second spot. This translates into $1.44 billion per season for Fox . Some of that money is most likely used to fund outlets like Fox News, which in turn uses its influence for power within the Republican party as their exclusive news outlet. The programs the Trump administration are imposing on America are often cited as being beneficial to the rich […]
Content Marketing and Customer Acquisition: How to Calculate Your CAC, CLV, and ROI
A series of weekly videos shared on Facebook generated 15 new customers for you over the course of a month. Pop quiz: is that result worth the effort you put into it? There’s no way of knowing: You need to identify acquisition costs, marketing spend, lifetime value, and more; you need to compare stat A with stat B. In short, tou need to put the data into context. Content marketing in 2016 was an undisputed champion. A full 60% of marketers create at least one piece of content each day. Content marketing leaders experience traffic growth that is 7.8x higher than that of content marketing followers. Inbound (i.e., content) marketing costs 62% less than outbound methods, but generates 3x as many leads. But (there’s always a "but") some may question the point of it all. Sure, content marketing spreads brand recognition, assists with SEO efforts, and builds your reputation and authority, but is that enough? If you’re on the content bandwagon but don’t know your customer acquisition cost (CAC) and customer lifetime value (CLV), you’re playing a dangerous game: You might be spending thousands on blog posts or infographics and assuming it’s worth those seven new clients you picked up, but is it really worth it? To some, it always comes down to dollars and cents. They want to see facts and figures that demonstrate the monetary value of the strategy. In the past, that kind of talk had content marketers gasping, clutching their chests, and muttering about "engagement this" and "awareness that" under their breath. But you can show the financial side of content. It can even be simple. And you need to do it to understand the big picture. Ready? Even if math scares you a little, I promise this won’t hurt. The Building Blocks Customer acquisition […]
LinkedIn Analytics: A Guide for Marketers
Why do we care about metrics? Hootsuite’s senior manager of customer success, Gerard Recio, says it best: “Without measuring your social media efforts, how are you able to tell if your social strategy is working? Use analytics to establish baseline targets, then create short and long term goals to work towards.”
We’ve given you the rundown for analytics across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest—so it’s about time LinkedIn got in on the action. To help you get the most out of LinkedIn analytics, we put together the following guide.
3 Strategic Ways to Get Links to Your Website
“Link building” is something I’ve never done in my 19 years of publishing online. In other words, I’ve never spent any time whatsoever emailing strangers and trying to convince them to link to my content. I have, however, been on the receiving end of many link-building requests. And they’ve never worked on me. Now, I know there are smart people who work on behalf of clients to get links through these outreach initiatives. Strangely, I’ve never received a link request from a smart person. It’s usually just dopey people using bad email scripts and automation that some clown sold them on. They don’t even bother to modify the language, so you see the same lame emails over and over. Outside of receiving compensation for a link (which I would never accept and is just a bad idea in general these days), I don’t see why any online publisher would agree to these requests. What’s in it for us? So, if you’re looking to get links to your site for all the benefits that come with it (including enhanced search rankings ), maybe you should try a different approach. Let’s look at three that might work for you. 1. Guest posting Not a new approach, certainly. But guest writing for relevant and respected publications remains one of the best ways to gain exposure to an audience that builds your own. And of course you’ll want, at minimum, a bio link back to your site in exchange for your content contribution. Now, you may remember that Google at one point spoke out against guest posting for SEO . Yes, spammy sites submitting spam to other spammy sites in exchange for links is not smart — but that’s not what we’re talking about. I’m also not necessarily talking about content farms like […]
Google’s Featured Snippets: How to Get Your Content to Appear
In the rush to get on the front page of Google, a major SERP opportunity stands out as the most useful and most relevant available: featured snippets . The bits of text at the top of many informational searches in Google, featured snippets can drive a ton of attention toward your site and can be an invaluable weapon for marketers. How can you create content that has the chance of ranking in featured snippets? While many marketers assume featured snippets are the territory of SEO masters or brands with million-dollar marketing budgets, that isn’t true at all. In fact, it’s easy to rank for featured snippets with organic content only. You just need to know how. What are featured snippets? Featured snippets are the informational content that shows up in Google’s SERPs immediately after the ads and sponsored posts (if available). This search for “how to show ROI for marketing” features a snippet from Marketing Mo: If there had been sponsored ads around this search term, they would appear above the snippet, which ranks as the top organic result. Google shows what it considers high-quality content in this space because it’s focused on fulfilling user intent . 5 tips to create featured snippets The good news is that, as a form of organic content, the featured snippet box is available to everybody who knows how to optimize their content accordingly. Yet, it’s tough news — you have to work hard to gain it. How do you make your content fit? If you can’t buy the space, how do you take proactive steps to ensure that your page earns the top spot? Here are a few simple steps I’ve used to create content that ranks in the snippets. 1. Create content specifically to answer questions. Provide in-depth answers. Featured snippets […]
Which Content Marketing Strategies Have the Biggest Impact on Keyword Rankings?
The term “content marketing” is a wide umbrella. It encompasses a plethora of different strategies and techniques. But at the end of the day, one of your primary goals is to create content that ranks as highly as possible on search engine results pages (SERPs). This is important because organic traffic is the number one means of generating traffic for many companies. A study from The Bright Edge even “found that organic search drives 51 percent of all visitors to B2B and B2C websites trumping all other non-organic channels.” This means one thing. You need to figure out the relationship between content marketing strategies and keyword rankings. This is instrumental in fine-tuning your content marketing campaign and finding the right areas to focus on. In this post, I analyze data from multiple studies and draw on my own knowledge and experience to give you a clear idea of the content strategies demanding the most attention. So, let’s see which strategies have the biggest impact on keyword rankings. Rich content I won’t waste your time telling you about the importance of creating quality content. You already know that. But I’d like to share with you this statistic from an infographic on Quick Sprout : That’s a lot of links! And I’m sure you know the integral role links play in SEO. This graph from Moz illustrates the importance of links and their influence on Google’s algorithm: Let’s put this information together. When you create rich content, it gets you more links. These links improve your overall SEO, which improves your rankings. So, being diligent about achieving and maintaining rigorous quality standards should be of the utmost concern. Long-form content Here’s the deal with long-form content. It’s hot right now. Scorching hot. I remember a few years ago when your average […]
To Drive Massive Online Traffic, Start With What Your Audience Loves
With content overload at an all time high, competing with heavy-hitting media sites seems impossible. They’ve staked their claim, and all the rest of us can hope for is to pick up the leftovers and eke out a meager living. Nonsense. On August 17th of 2016, Arthur Tubman and the team at Monday Monday Network did the impossible. Within the first 45 days of launch, their site attracted just under 9 million visitors and today their daily average visitor count clocks in over 600k. The question is: How? Answer: By adopting a them-first approach before pushing go on a single piece of monetized content. While much of their approach centered around Facebook, there’s nothing magical about Facebook ads and there are plenty of other creative ways to drive traffic . The lessons from the launch, however, prove that the bedrock principle of all marketing is still true: it’s not about you … it’s about them. Here’s how you can take that advice to heart. Start with what you love. When it comes to social media, brands are notorious for taking one of two misguided paths: “dominating” or “dumping.” With the first, businesses — particularly e-commerce — dominate their feed with heavy-handed promotions, pitches, and products. With the second, social is treated as little more than a repository for that same business’ usual onsite content — i.e., a digital dumping ground. Both approaches, while well-intentioned, amount to a social-media presence that screams, “Me first.” In contrast, consider Monday Monday Network’s approach. Today, the site hosts 24 separate topics — basically channels to which they post roughly 30 articles a day. Each of those topics began its life not as a column or blog, but as an individual Community Page on Facebook. Some communities they took over — like Addicted 2 […]
Humanize Your Brand: 3 Ways to Create a Visual Social Media Calendar
Social media is arguably the most powerful growth tool on the internet. Ironically, it’s also the most difficult to master. In a study by Ascend2, 40% of digital marketers cited social as the “most difficult” channel to master (a tie for first with websites). Asked to identify the most difficult tactic on this most difficult channel, the answer — by a landslide — was three words: creating compelling content. How can you rescue your social media approach and create truly compelling content? The easiest way is to create a visually based social media calendar built around three of the primary reasons humans engage with social media: Celebrate holidays At the risk of stating the obvious, marketing revolves around holidays: Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Christmas, Halloween, Presidents Day, etc. Augment your holiday promotions with original content that celebrates the holiday … not your products or sales. Chubbies does this brilliantly and gets phenomenal engagement as its reward: In 2015, Samuel Adams reached viral status with its April Fool’s campaign announcing the release of a new “heliYUM” beer. The real social gold, however, is in the obscure holidays : Batman Day (Sept. 17, according to DC Comics), Star Wars Day (May 4), Bubblegum Day (Feb. 3 — not to be confused with Chewing Gum Day on Sept. 30), and many, many more. Building a visual social media calendar around these types of holidays involves two steps. First, get to know your audience. Outside of the usual suspects, the prioritized holidays should be a direct reflection of the people you serve. Sometimes a connection will be obvious. If it’s not, dig into Facebook Audience Insights to find pages and events your fans like, as well as the hashtags they frequently share. Second, get organized. Set up a visual calendar. Consider using tools […]
Why Does User Intent Matter So Much to Your SEO?
Once upon a time, search engines were robotic, mechanical, and mathematical. However, Google’s algorithm standards have since become much more focused on what those searching for information really want. As such, user intent is the key to creating the content that enhances the relevance of your pages and improves your SEO. Neil Patel describes “user intent” as the goal someone has in mind when typing a query into Google. In some cases, the intent is to purchase something. For others, it’s to find information or make a connection with a company or an individual. Just as you wouldn’t develop a product without knowing who the user for that product is going to be, you shouldn’t develop online content without knowing how it can help people and whose goals it will help fulfill. What’s more, you’ll enjoy the added benefit of standing out as a brand that cares deeply about its customers and their needs. As you seek to better incorporate user intent into your content marketing strategy , these three tips can help. 1. Consider different types of user intent “A person’s goal when they search something online” seems like a simple definition, but it can take many forms. As you probably see when you evaluate your own digital searches, not all Google queries are created equal. In fact, intent can (and does) differ from person to person and time to time. Neil shares these three types of user intent in online search: Transactional : A person wants to buy something. Navigational : A person seeks for a specific resource, page, or site. Informational : A person wants additional information on a topic or answers to their questions. Tailoring content for one of these types is critical. How do you do this? It’s simple. First, you look at keywords […]