4 months ago on
How to Build a Content Marketing Strategy in 2018
How do you know what’s the right content strategy for you in this ever-changing digital marketing world?
Google has come a long way from ranking results which are just stuffed with keyword. Also, many brands have proven that ranking content strategy is not about ranking first on Google.
So many start-ups have been successful with email marketing, social media, video content etc. For example, Leadpages grew its subscriber list from 0 to 15,000 within a year mainly from email marketing and tons of helpful content.
There are numerous ways to create and distribute your content. By the time you start implementing your video marketing plan you hear that influencer marketing is the next big thing.
This is precisely why picking a strategy and sticking with it is difficult for most marketers.
Add to this that most topics and niches are overcrowded by now. You will find brands already ranking with great content no matter what your niche is.
So how do you succeed in this challenging scenario? You have to be up to date and ahead of your competition in content marketing.
This is why we have put together a recipe to build a content marketing strategy that’s perfect for 2018 in this blog. Here is what you need to include in your strategy.
Remember that strategy for each company may be different but these are the basic ingredients that must be there in your content strategy if you want to succeed today.
Write Insanely Helpful Content
How Google ranks results has changed over the years and will keep changing in future too. There is just one way to make sure that you are ranking for years to come in your niche. And that is to write high quality content that answers reader’s questions.
Think of the pain points your customers face in your industry and create content to solve their problems. The content must be twice as helpful as the number one ranking result.
Even if you are not focusing on search engine it is a good practice to benchmark against the best performing content and then surpass it.
If the number one result on Google gives ‘10 helpful ways to increase sales’? Write ‘21 helpful ways’ instead to attract users.
Is the top content unbeatably good? Shoot a simple video to make the same points and embed in your blog. People (especially millenials) prefer to watch information rather than read it.
Remember there is always something you can do to improve the content already out there.
Write Long Form Content
Longer blogs typically perform better. The sweet spot according to most studies is 2000- 2500 words. However, even posts of up to 4000 words are now doing better in many niches.
Since every topic is overcrowded with content, it is now time to go niche in your topic and write in-depth content. In short write to cover more in narrow topic rather than touching on various topics in your industry.
Write for ‘Best women’s trekking shoes for Himalayan treks’ instead of ‘trekking shoes for women’ and cover everything possible under the narrow topic.
This also makes sure you are targeting long form keywords. Also, readers who fall under your narrow target are more likely to subscribe since you answered exactly what they wanted.
Of course it goes without saying that this level of micro-targeting can only be possible if you have done an in-depth research on your target market.
Use Video Content
2017 has seen a huge jump in visual content consumption. Cisco estimates the video content traffic will be 80% of all internet traffic by 2019.
Given that 4x times more users prefer watching a video rather than reading about a product it makes sense to invest your efforts in video. Live streaming on social media is big today. So is infographics and recorded video for helpful content.
Podcast is also gaining momentum since it allows users to multi task or listen when they are driving. So, simply converting your existing content to video or audio could also get you lot of traffic.
Optimize for Mobile
According to Business to Community nearly 80% of Internet usage will be from mobile in 2018!
That is a huge portion which should flip the way you look at device usage. It primarily means that brands should now start building for mobile and then optimize the content for desktop.
Use AMP pages for better mobile experience, make apps and focus getting share of the mobile screen for a winning content marketing strategy in 2018.
Have a Driving Purpose
This is important in an age where the internet is overflowing with similar looking ‘me too’ content. Being original and having a purpose sets you apart to your target market immediately. People connect with brands that have a cause and value that matches their own.
This is evident in case of the younger population. According to AdWeek, 49% of millennial will seek out brands that align with causes. This is more than any other generation.
Let’s Wrap It Up
Going niche is the best strategy to capture audience that is bombarded with unnecessary information all the time. Give your audience something they looking for and in a format they prefer and you are bound to succeed. Writing long form content which is helpful essentially takes care of this.
Focus efforts on video and mobile screen since that is where most of population is consuming content in 2018
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7 months ago on
What Content Marketers can do differently in 2018
Content marketing has emerged as the top marketing activity today. Every business is bullish on content marketing and is investing even more into it this year.
Here is the result of survey conducted by Smart Insights asking 850 marketers to pick the most important marketing activity.
As you can see all marketers are aggressive on content marketing. This has increased the competition marketers face despite great content.
In this blog we will discuss what you can do differently this year to stand out and pull more traffic through your content.
• Long form in-depth Content
There was a time when a decent quality 650 word blog post had a chance to rank on page one on Google. This is not the case now. Ranking high on Google requires quality backlinks, domain authority, time and so much more.
When it comes to blogs, think of long form anchor posts of 1500 to 2500 words. These should be like a helpful guide covering A to Z of your industry or topic.
Anchor posts are blog posts that are the pillar of your site and pull in tons of traffic consistently. Do not expect to get traffic within a month.
It is typical to see your traffic rising after 6 months of posting. Do everything to make your content really helpful for your audience. Use infographics and videos to explain concepts.
Any content which does not make your reader say ‘ Wow! That was helpful’ has little chance to rank in top three searches. This is how you can differentiate your content and rank higher on Google in 2018
• Go niche
Differentiating your content in an already overcrowded web can be challenging. In any industry there will be in- depth blog posts that have been on the web for five years or more.
How can you possibly compete with those pieces? The answer lies in narrowing the focus of your content.
Write about nutrition for dancers instead of writing on general nutrition. Focus on long tail-keywords that will have less competition.
For example, instead of writing on ‘ladies shoes’, focus on ‘office shoes for working moms’. This way you will not only rank higher on search engines but will also attract highly targeted visitors that are easier to convert.
• Semantic Search
Google no more relies on just keywords to rank results. It uses something known as semantic search.
Semantic search takes into account the intent of the searcher.
This means weighing in the context, location, searcher history, language style and device.
That means Google now understands that a user typing in ‘green dress online’ is more likely to purchase the dress online than if she had typed ‘green dresses’.
For marketers this means that they have to be more aware of the context of searchers and conditions under which they are searching. Content should now match situations instead of just keywords.
• Target Google Featured Snippets
There is something better than position one on Google search. It’s position 0 .
You may have noticed that Google also gives the answer to your queries in a highlighted search box above all search results.
This gives the searchers the answers at a glance without having to go to another page.
Ranking in featured snippets increases your traffic and decreases bounce rates. The great news is that you don’t even have to rank number one on Google to be able to feature in rich snippet.
To increase your chances to be featured in a rich snippet make sure your content:
- Has a structured format with sub-headings
- Keep your answers to the point, short and snappy
- Mark up your article with structured data
- Answer popular questions asked
• Explore other formats of Content
Audio podcasts have made a big comeback last year. There are more than 42 million people who listen to podcasts weekly in the US alone.
‘How to’ searches on YouTube have gone up by 70% in 2017. YouTube is also the second most popular search engine after Google.
The trend is clear. Users prefer video and audio form of content and marketers must produce this if they want to reach their audience.
Bringing it all together
Content marketing is here to stay as the most profitable channel to get leads. However, digital marketing landscape is changing continuously and marketers must concentrate on long-form quality content and niche topics to stay at the top.
Understanding Google’s semantic search and featured snippets will help to reach more audience. Lastly, experimenting with fresher format of content such as podcasts and videos will differentiate you from the other content.
Above all, it is important to keep experimenting in digital marketing. New trends emerge quickly and demand agility from content marketers.
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8 months ago on
15 Social Media Trends You Should Focus in 2018
Long gone was the time when social media is used only to share your pictures of vacation or honeymoon.
Even though, that trend still remains, nowadays, social media is used by many brands to promote their items.
Brands have chosen social media as a channel to promote and endorse their products because people 24*7 check on portable devices such as mobile to browse and more time is spent on social media.
If people have any frustrations or dissatisfaction with any of the brands, they express their emotions on social media.
Mostly people search on social media to get ideas about new brands.
More brands are using social media to build relationships with their customers which will help them to create loyalty towards their brands.
Let’s take a look at the social media trends you should focus in 2018.
1. Ephemeral Content
The phenomenon of Ephemeral content is introduced by Snapchat. Wondering about what exactly is that?
The content which user has created vanishes after 24 hours and followers only have that limited time period to view that content.
Snapchat pioneered this phenomenon but Instagram copied that idea and introduced it as Instagram Stories.
Each month more than 200 million people are using Instagram Stories; which is more than 50 million of Snapchat users.
If it’s continuing by this rate, by the end of 2018, more than half of Instagram users will be using Stories.
Since launching the Instagram Stories, the average time per day spent by users on Instagram has increased to 28 minutes.
This is definitely 7-13 minutes more time spent before introducing Stories.
Each month, stories feature is actively used by more than 1 million advertisers.
The advantage of using stories for brands is that any Instagram user can see your brand stories even if they are not following you.
2. Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing is one of the best ways for the companies to get connected with next generation audiences.
World famous companies such as Rolex, The North Face, and HubSpot have made huge profits by making use of influencer marketing .
On the other hand, companies who have used traditional marketing strategies struggled to get connected to social media users.
This clearly indicates that 2018 is definitely a year for influencer marketing to bloom.
3. Understand Learning Styles
When you are trying to build and enhance personalized experience and categories for your targeted customers, you need to take an extra care in understanding learning styles.
Learning styles indicates the pattern how each people learn and process information is different.
The way you handle different learning styles on social media must be different.
4. Generation Z or Gen Z
This is one important area to focus more in 2018. Generation Z or Gen Z is more valuable to brand owners because this group is influenced more by the social media than they are by other sales and discounts.
Gen Z is also known as Post-Millennials, iGeneration, or Homeland Generation which includes freshly passouts from colleges who will enter corporate life or have already entered.
As they enter into workforce, their buying capacity also increases.
More than 80% of Gen Z says that they spend at least one hour in watching videos. This in turn will make more influencers move towards the brands.
Influencer marketing is an instant hit among Gen Z as they deliver 11 times Return On Investment (ROI) over other usual digital media channels.
5. Live Streaming
Live streaming was one of 2017’s top marketing trends and it will continue the same in 2018 as well.
Videos are always preferred over photos. In comparison with photos, Facebook videos get more than 135% of views.
Brands stream live videos on social media platforms which helps them dramatically to increase user engagement and followers.
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other platforms offer in-app live video streaming which help them in creating more user engagement.
Chatbots is a software application which is used to interact with customers; usually it adopts texual conversations with users.
Already, Facebook messenger have more than 100,000 active bots on a monthly basis. These chatbots have helped in increasing prodictivity of the organization up to 3.5 times.
More than 60% of Millenials says that they have already used chatbots in their business and other 71% wants to try hands in experiencing chatbots used by brands.
Don’t mistake chatbots to be robots. Using machine learning technology, chatbots are programmed to speak like human agents.
Brands are able to customize their bots in such a way they perfectly reflects personality of the brands and also send personalized messages to its users.
7. Messaging Platforms
More than 2.5 billion people use various messaging platforms such as Facebook Messenger, Whatsapp and, Kik to communicate with companies.
Instead of simply posting marketing content into profiles and feeds, companies should take an extra care to make it simple for customers to start one-to-one conversations.
It is more suitable to integrate chatbots and voice assistants into messaging platforms to create a unique and personalized experience for users.
Engaging more number of users through these platforms will contribute a huge difference in taking your business into new levels of success.
8. Social Listening
Social listening is the science of tracking conversations of the users which involves certain phrases, brands or words.
Then you can make use of these phrases/words together in finding new opportunities to create content suitable for your users.
Social listening tools help brands in synthesizing their customer’s digital footprint.
Using social listening, brands are able to track brand health in social media, develop marketing campaigns suitable for customers and therefore able to provide excellent brand experiences.
9. AI Marketing
Wondered when you search for something in internet and has seen related ads on pages you visit?
It’s because social media marketing has collaborated with Artificial Intelligence (AI) that enables corresponding ads to appear.
More than 50% of marketers already make use of AI in their businesses.
With the advancements in technology, the growth of AI is expected to reach around 53% in coming years.
10. Sentimental Analytics
In 2018, social media marketers will be concentrating more in analyzing emotions and feelings of customers towards brands rather than looking just into Likes, Views, Shares and Clicks which are great.
Social media marketers will be analyzing the following questions:
- What is the customer sentiment towards the brand?
- How social media can change that sentiment?
- What’s the strength of our Brand Health Index?
- Does our brand have high Net Promoter Score?
- Do people think about our brand frequently?
The answers to these questions do matter as these answers can help you in analyzing what people feel about your brand and how you can improve the image of your brand.
11. Augmented Reality / Virtual Reality
Most brands are not aware of the marketing possibilities Augmented Reality(AR) / Virtual Reality (VR) possess and still thinking it’s expensive and take years to adapt to it.
AR/VR are able to drastically enhance content marketing, media relations and customer service.
AR/VR is expected to give whole new dimensions to SEO, social media, public relations and enhance better experiences to audiences.
12. Visual Content
Visual content gives brands a major opportunity to grow in 2018. As tons of contents are cluttering the social media, people don’t pay attention to these contents as they scroll very fast through the social media pages.
This trend can be avoided by videos (pre-recorded or live stream) as they stand out in between the junk contents.
So, visual contents are going to be a stand out trend in 2018.
13. Support Key Influencers
Another important social media trend to focus in 2018 is to support key influencers related to your industry.
It is important because by providing data, ideas, products and support to people who can easily connect large groups of followers to your business brand is a major trend to be focused.
Definitely a key influencer can outreach your marketing strategies by their influence in the followers.
They can do so much for your products, services and brand but you have to make sure that they also receive equal value for the relationship they have with your brand.
14. Video Ads
Video was one of the hit trends for 2017 and it still continues to be same in 2018 as the need for videos are only increasing.
43% of users prefer to see more video content from marketers.
Social media ads is the area where brands can capitalize more on social media in 2018.
As social media ads are already trending and expected to continue the same throughout the year.
It’s clear that video ads can influence people greater, because 95% of the message conveyed through the video stays in minds of people compared to 10% while reading content texts.
Last but not least, LinkedIn. You will be thinking why LinkedIn not any other platforms?
It is because LinkedIn is a mix of culture, business, life insights and lot more. LinkedIn doesn’t have any limiting algorithms like other platforms to bind its activity.
Content can be published by anyone and also can be seen by anyone; this makes the platform as an open source for its users.
While other platforms need someone to follow to even see their published content.
As it is an open source, there is more chance for achieving success. This makes LinkedIn one of the hottest social media trends in 2018.
Why You Should Care About Social Media Trends?
Social media trends are definitely the ice breakers in gaining large number of customers.
To achieve success in your business, not only you should take care of social media trends but also in keeping up trust and transparency for your customers.
As you now know the top social media trends to be focused in 2018, we hope that this will definitely help you in achieving heights of success.
Please let us know if you have any questions or queries.
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8 months ago on
90 Link Building Strategies to Use in 2018 [Infographic]
Higher search engine rankings are based on the authority of webpages. As you probably know, quality links can increase your site’s authority as well as improves its SEO value. Link building helps you to increase the flow of high-quality links pointing to your website. It‘s a proven marketing strategy by many businesses for improving their brand awareness.
Google considers quality links to your site while ranking. Links indicate that whether your page is useful as a result. Search engines only want to show useful results to its users. So, all your SEO efforts for higher rankings are imperfect without link building strategies.
Do you want increase your domain authority through link building? Here is an infographic illustrating 90 linking building strategies that you can include in your SEO strategy in 2018.