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Keep up to date with the latest content marketing tips and news.

11/Sep/2017
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Shoppable visual content appears to be the latest frontier for marketers to improve engagement and drive better conversion rates after sports apparel brand Reebok and online retailer Very revealed this week that they are planning use to images and videos to push consumers along the sales cycle more effectively on both desktop and mobile.

Reebok has already published a series of videos featuring athletes wearing the brand’s latest clothing and footwear. The shoppable element to this content allows any viewers across social media platforms to click on items they see, find out more information and then advance to a checkout where they can buy them immediately.

Reebok says that this new strategy is designed to capture the attention of a growing number of customers, who like to use Instagram, Facebook and other social media platforms to discover products and then shop online. Reebok is working with tech enterprise Curalate to create the shoppable experience that it believes will be “seamless” and reduce the cycle between discovery and point of purchase.

“Reebok’s online content celebrates fitness communities,” Reebok Senior Digital Manager, Mark Allin, said. “We’ll feature our products in content captured during genuine workouts, rather than simply product shots. This way people are clear as to what our position is in fitness, and can then explore options to purchase. This approach provides a clearer and more consistent message to the user, one considered journey.”

Shoppable content is beneficial for brands in numerous ways. It helps them to meet growing customer expectations regarding high-quality shopping experiences, while also optimising their marketing spends. Reebok says it will now be easier to determine ROI for branded content initiatives, which will, in turn, give them a clearer picture of a consumer’s “ideal” purchasing journey.

UK retailer Very also revealed this week that it has teamed up with Bauer Media for an extensive mobile and online shoppable campaign. Users watching the videos will be able to select items and create a bespoke outfit, while a personalised quiz will offer up advice by a range of style gurus. It will also tap into social media activity to deliver outfit suggestions and humorous fashion=focused commentary.

“In the fiercely competitive online fashion market, we’ve only got seconds to grab our audience’s attention on their smartphones before they swipe on,” Head of Brand at Shop Direct, Andrew Roscoe, said. “That’s why we’ve worked with Bauer on an innovative and impactful campaign, which will be relevant and inspire our target customer for V by Very. We’re proud of this work and can’t wait for it to land.”

Multi brand retailer Shop Director, which operates Very, revealed that almost two-thirds of sales are now completed via mobile devices, so they were eager to come up with a creative solution to engage and interact with a growing number of mobile users. A separate study by Influenster earlier this week found 90% of women prefer to consumer videos on smartphones, so the campaign should be a success.


01/Apr/2017
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Content marketing has become a crucial tool for businesses wanting to increase their exposure and brand awareness. However, it is far from a quick fix and takes many resources to craft and run a successful campaign. All too often, many of the common mistakes occur, even when seasoned professionals are running advertising. Therefore, it is important to regularly review strategies.

Lack of content promotion 

In this era, it is crucial to promote content. Once upon a time, material could be posted onto a blog and then left to gain attention. No more. Now, even the best content has to be shared if it’s to gain the right attention – even if it’s an exceptional piece of carefully crafted content.

Without promoting posts across a varied range of platforms, there is less chance the right people will see it. Though focussing on SEO can help gain more views, organic reach shouldn’t be relied on. Instead, every single piece of work should be shared on multiple platforms to get as many views as possible. This helps build followers, brand awareness and consumer trust.

Publishing content on the wrong channel

There are many platforms available to content marketing strategists these days, but it’s important to publish the right content in the right place. For example, a blog post might work well as a link on Twitter, but it might not gain attention on Pinterest. Meanwhile, LinkedIn certainly isn’t the right place to share personal or funny GIFs, though these can work well as occasional content posted to FB pages.

Focussing on quantity instead of quality 

It’s unsurprising that marketers want to create a lot of content and publish it regularly to remain visible to their target audience. However, focusing solely on producing a lot of content instead of checking for quality is a huge mistake. Content must be genuinely useful to consumers, of high quality and with added value; there’s no point in producing average content.

Failing to harness the power of Google Analytics

Good Analytics is an extremely powerful tool, yet many content marketers fail to use it properly. It can give insights into which content is performing the best, thereby helping creators make material that is most likely to find appeal with audiences. It can also tell marketers which website pages get the most hits, and how long people spend on a website. This information is invaluable, and should be used as a matter of course.

Not listening to target consumers

To get more views on content, businesses need to know what their customers want. And to understand this, it’s vital to actually listen. There are many tools to help monitor specific keywords across social media platforms, allowing marketers to follow conversations about brands, products or people. It is also important to respond to all social media comments and act swiftly to correct problems; showing people the face behind the brand.

By avoiding the above mistakes, content marketers can help hone their strategies, develop better content, and give campaigns the best chance of success.

 


03/Mar/2017
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Over the past few years, the use of content marketing has grown phenomenally. It continues to evolve at a rapid pace and it is, therefore, essential to stay abreast of the latest changes. However, it is also important to review past months and years to understand how the market has changed.

There are plenty of lessons to be learned from 2016 – the first of which is that content marketing strategists are getting better. In fact, 63 per cent of business to customer (B2C) marketers said they’d been more successful than in 2015. Meanwhile, 62 per cent of business to business (B2B) marketers agreed with these sentiments. With growing success, comes the ability to command larger budgets, and the opportunity to balance tried-and-tested methods with new tactics.

Marketing must be mobile

One clear content marketing message from 2016 is that marketers must cater to a mobile market. Both Google and consumer habits are driving the rising dominance of mobile, and neither can be ignored. Google has prioritised mobile, first with a mobile-friendly update in April. This was followed by a mobile-first index update last October. Whilst many websites are now mobile-friendly, a survey in 2016 suggested that 23 per cent of small businesses have not updated their online homes, meaning that many opportunities could be missed.

Email remains a productive distribution network

Though social networks have risen at an astronomical rate, email remains the best channel for content marketers to distribute their content through. A lot of companies still measure success by how many social media likes and shares they’re getting. However, to get eyeballs on content, email is king.

Trust is crucial

2016 also gave credence to the fact that successful content relies on audience trust. Content marketing works best when it instils trust in readers, engaging with audiences who find the content enjoyable, useful and entertaining. Over time, regular fans come to trust what their favourite brands are saying.

This means that content strategists have to be a trustworthy publisher from the very beginning, catching spelling mistakes, checking facts and never misleading audiences.

Content marketing can utilise user-generated material

Finally, it’s been shown that audiences trust recommendations from their friends and peers. This means that user-generated content has a place in a firm’s content marketing strategy. This can take many forms – from customer advocacy and online reviews – to social shares and unboxing videos. Though this content type can be almost impossible to control, it can reap benefits in terms of engagement and, ultimately, conversions. If organisations want to capitalise on this, audiences should be encouraged to write reviews, take part in contests and share content. This can be done with a call to action with an associated incentive.

Content marketing continues to evolve, and technologies will come and go. However, core interactions and connections with consumers remain the same. Figuring out the best way to maintain these relationships is crucial, and by nurturing audiences using the lessons learned from last year, 2017 can be even more successful.