Posts Tagged ‘Michael Brenner’

106 More Amazing Social Media and Marketing Statistics for 2014 and 2015

Tuesday, February 10th, 2015

As Wallis Simpson, Dutchess of Windsor, famously said, “You can never be too rich or too thin. Or have too many social media marketing statistics.”

Well, she actually only said the first part (which is debatable), but certainly would have said the second part (which isn’t) had social media been around in the 1930s.

The importance of emotion in B2B marketing

Image credit: Business 2 Community

How effective is social media in comparison to other digital marketing channels? Do consumers actually listen to brands? Do brands actually listen to consumers? How does B2B social media marketing differ in effectiveness from B2C use? Which network drives half of all social traffic to B2B websites and blogs?

What type of posts generate the most engagement on Facebook? What do 91% of consumers check daily? What do more than half of marketers identify as their most critical areas of focus over the next 12 months?

Find the answers to those questions and many more here in 106 digital marketing facts (well, mostly) and statistics from two dozen sources.

21 Social Media Statistics

1. 54% of B2B marketers said they have generated leads from social media. (CMO)

2. Among the largest social media sites, YouTube drives the most highly engaged website traffic (with visitors overall spending on average nearly four minutes and visiting three pages on target sites), followed in order by Google+, LinkedIn and Twitter. Reddit and StumbleUpon drive the least engaged visitors. (VentureBeat)

3. Is the value of social media marketing for b2c brand overrated? 68% of U.S. consumers say they “mostly” or “always” ignore brand posts on every social network. And 83% of consumers say they have had a “bad experience with social media marketing.” (Experience: The Blog)

4. Brand ads on social networks were among the least trusted form of advertising, significantly lower than trust in ads viewed in traditional media. (Experience: The Blog)

5. Among “prestige” consumer brands, over the past four years, less than 0.25% of new customers were acquired through Facebook and less than .01% from Twitter; this compares to almost 10% for paid search and 7% for email marketing. (Experience: The Blog)

6. And yet – 80% of brands advertised on social media sites in 2014. (DashBurst)

7. But – social media can be effective for selling things to marketers. Marketing professionals are 50% more likely than consumers in general to like a brand on Facebook, 400% more likely to follow brands on Twitter, 100% more likely to make a purchase as a result of seeing something on Facebook, and 150% more likely to have completed a purchase as a result of a tweet. (Experience: The Blog)

8. Only 20% of CMOs use social networks to engage and collaborate with customers. (MarketingLand)

9. But 24% of brand say they do “social listening.” (DashBurst)

10. Just 18% of consumers trust posts by brands or companies on social sites like Facebook and Twitter. (MediaPost)

11. While 78% of companies now have a dedicated social media team, only 26% integrate social media fully into their business strategies. (DashBurst)

12. Yet 93% of shoppers’ buying decisions are influenced by social media- because 90% trust peer recommendations. But only 14% trust advertisements. (#Socialnomics 2014)

13. 82% of hyper growth SMBs say social media is effective for generating new leads. (Business 2 Community)

14. 58% of marketers indicate that their social media efforts have generated leads. (Believable.) Social media produces almost double the marketing leads of trade shows, telemarketing, direct mail, or PPC. (Not as believable.) (Business 2 Community)

15. You’ve likely seen the statistic that if Facebook were a country, it would be the third-most populous on earth. What you may not know is that WhatsApp would be #5 (followed by the U.S.), Google+ #7, LinkedIn #9, and Twitter the 10th largest country. (#Socialnomics 2014)

16. For online merchants, the average order value influenced by social media last year was $143.46. (AddShoppers)

17. Though 60% of people say they get their news from TV and 29% from newspapers, social media comes in third as a news source at 28%. It’s followed by radio at 19% and other print media at 6%. (Digital Information World)

18. Though most customer service requests (40%) still come through call centers, 18% now originate via email and 13% through “eService” (web, social and chat). Customer service requests through that eService channel are expected to grow 53% in the coming year. (Bluewolf)

19. 90% of enterprises say they use social media to respond to customer service inquiries–yet 58% of consumers who have tweeted about a bad experience never received a response from the offending company. (Bluewolf)

20. When they do respond, the average response time of brands on Twitter to user comments or complaints is nine hours. (Social Media Slant)

21. 75 of the top 100 brands have a presence on Google+. (Social Media Slant)

5 Digital Marketing Statistics

22. For the first time, marketers spent more to advertise on the Internet (a total of $42.8 billion) than they did for broadcast television in 2013. (MediaPost)

23. U.S.  marketers spent $12.8 billion on online display (banner) advertising in 2013–30% of the total online advertising spend. Retailers are the biggest spenders on display ads, accounting for 21% of total spending. (MediaPost)

24. However–just 32% of consumers say they trust online advertising of any type. Consumers trusted the messages in text message ads the least at 12%. (MediaPost)

25. 81% of marketing professionals believe that digital marketing technologies will cause their role to change within the next three years, but just 14% know how to “reinvent” themselves. (FierceCMO)

26. 76% of marketers say they need to be more data-focused to succeed, and 74% agree that “capturing and applying data to inform and drive marketing activities is the new reality.” Yet only 39% report using customer data and behavior patterns to shape marketing strategy in the past year. (FierceCMO)

8 Content Marketing Statistics

27. Marketers identified content marketing and social media engagement (each at 36%) among their top three digital marketing priorities for 2014. 31% included conversion rate optimization. Just 9% placed video marketing, and 2% connected TV, in their top priorities. (B2B Marketing Insider)

28. Consumer marketing is about mobile, B2B is about content. Asked what their organization’s “single most exciting opportunity” was for 2014, 22% of consumer marketers cited mobile, while just 10% of B2B marketers concurred. However, 24% of B2B marketers identified content marketing as their most exciting opportunity, compared to just 11% of B2C counterparts. (B2B Marketing Insider)

29. B2B purchasing decisions in general are taking longer and involving more people on the buying team. 58% of buyers say they spend more time researching than in the past; 53% rely more on peer recommendations; and 65% said the winning vendor’s content had a significant impact. (Marketing Interactions)

30. 88% of business buyers say online content plays a major to moderate role in vendor selection, yet just 9% of respondents think of vendors as trusted sources of content (ouch!); the most influential types of content across both the awareness and evaluation phases of the buying journey are third-party validated research reports and studies. (MediaPost)

31. 68% of business buyers start their content sourcing at search engines and portals, 40% go to vendor websites (why, if only 9% trust them? Hmm…), and 25% are activated by an email from a trusted source or peer. (MediaPost)

32. The three most sought-after types of content by business buyers are comprehensive industry/category surveys and studies (52%); technical details about products and solutions (44%); and analyst reviews or recommendations (43%). (MediaPost)

33. Content plays a pivotal role in add-on buying decisions or supplemental purchases following an initial contract; 86% of B2B buyers frequently or sometimes use digital content to identify complementary or add-on products. (MediaPost)

34. B2B marketers spent an estimated $16.6 billion in 2014 on digital content publishing to acquire business leads, influence customer specifications, and educate and engage prospects. (MediaPost)

22 B2B Marketing Statistics

35. LinkedIn is the only platform the majority (62%) of B2B marketers consider to be effective; in second place is Twitter, with 50% of saying it is effective. (CMO)

36. Only 16 percent of B2B consumers prefer live webinars. (CMO)

37. The average B2B marketing budget is about 2% of revenue. (CMO)

38. Metrics matter. 88% of B2B CMOs say their C-suite peers turn to them for data and insight needed to strategize and plan, and 78% agree that marketing’s influence on corporate strategy is greater today than it was just two years ago. (CMO)

39. The highest paying marketing jobs are in B2B. (CMO)

40. 60% of all social media traffic to business to business websites come from Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. (SteamFeed)

41. 34% of tech companies have reduced their traditional advertising budget to fund digital marketing activities. (Only 34%?) (SteamFeed)

42. Just 6% of b2b buyers say that a prospective vendor’s social media activity has “a lot” of impact on their purchase decisions. 30% say it is “important but not a deal breaker.” (Content Marketing Institute)

43. On the other hand, 55% of buyers will eliminate a vendor from consideration if contact information and a phone number are not easy to find on the vendor’s website. (Content Marketing Institute)

44. The vast majority of buyers prefer to contact vendors through email (81 percent) or phone (58 percent). Just 17% want to use live chat and 9% social media. (Content Marketing Institute)

45. After visiting the home page and products/services pages, the most important next stop for b2b buyer’s is a prospective vendor’s “About Us” page. (Content Marketing Institute)

46. U.S. B2B marketers are projected to spend more than $100 billion on social media advertising by 2017. (Gerardo Lara on Pinterest)

47. The top social networks and social media tactics used by B2B marketers are LinkedIn and Facebook (each used by 86% of marketers), followed by Twitter (81%), blogging (64%), annd YouTube (53%). At the other end of the spectrum, less than 10% use Foursquare, podcasting, or Quora. (Gerardo Lara on Pinterest)

48. More than 80% of B2B marketers say their top goal in social media is increased brand awareness. (Gerardo Lara on Pinterest)

49. 53% of B2B Fortune 500 companies use marketing automation. (Marketing Interactions)

50. 63% of industrial supplies buyers say they purchase online, making it the most popular purchasing channel. Paper catalogs are least important. (Internet Retailer)

51. 54% of B2B buyers say they spend half or more of the industrial supply budgets online, and 39% say they plan to increase the amount they spend online in the coming year. (Internet Retailer)

52. 67% of industrial buyers say it is “very” or “extremely” important for suppliers to offer the ability to purchase on their websites. Just 7% say this is “not important.” (Internet Retailer)

53. Emotion plays a surprisingly large role in B2B purchases. Even when buyers see the value to the business, only 14% perceive a real difference in supplier offerings. (Business 2 Community)

54. But 71% of B2B buyers who see a personal value will buy a product. (Business 2 Community)

55. And 68% of buyers who see a personal value will pay a higher price for business product or service–but just 8% of buyers who see no personal value will pay the higher price. (Business 2 Community)

56. More than two-thirds of tech B2B searches occur outside of North America. (Social Media Slant)

6 Twitter Statistics

57. “Twitter users who see tweets from B2B tech brands are more likely to visit the sites of these brands. A recent study found that Twitter users visit B2B tech brand sites at a higher rate (59%) compared to average Internet users (40%), illustrating the strong presence of a B2B audience on Twitter. (CMO)

58. There is 50% crossover of members on Instagram and Twitter. (SteamFeed)

59. Tweets with 1-2 hashtags get 21% higher average engagement than those with none; but tweets with more than 3 hashtags get 17% less engagement. (SteamFeed)

60. Grandparents are the fastest-growing demographic on Twitter. (#Socialnomics 2014)

61. Twitter has 255 million monthly active users. (Social Media Slant)

62. 53% of Twitter users recommend products in their tweets at some time. (Social Media Slant)

7 LinkedIn Statistics

63. 83% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn for distributing content. (Gerardo Lara on Pinterest)

64. For B2B websites and blogs, 90% of social traffic is driven by the big three networks–with half of it coming from LinkedIn. (Business 2 Community)

65. 83% of business-to-business marketers use LinkedIn for content marketing. (Business 2 Community)

66. 93% of B2B marketers find LinkedIn the most effective social network for B2B lead generation, and 77% say they have acquired a customer through LinkedIn. (Business 2 Community)

67. Each second, two new members join LinkedIn – the equivalent of the entire enrollment of the Ivy League joining every day. (#Socialnomics 2014)

68. There are, on average, eight new LinkedIn groups created each week, and 200 group conversations per minute. (Social Media Slant)

69. LinkedIn (74%) and Tumblr (54%) are the only social networks that U.S. users access predominantly via desktop. (Social Media Slant)

5 Facebook Statistics

70. Facebook posts with less than 250 characters get 60% more engagement. (SteamFeed)

71. Nearly half (45%) of B2B marketers say their company has gained at least one new customer through LinkedIn. (Gerardo Lara on Pinterest)

72. 52% of digital news consumers say they get at least some of their news from Facebook and Twitter. (Digital Information World)

73. Facebook has 802 million daily active users–609 million on mobile devices. (Social Media Slant)

74. Posting to Facebook on Fridays is likely to result in better engagement: 17% of weekly comments, 16% of weekly likes and shares, and 25% of videos played occur on that day. Updates posted on Sundays generate the fewest comments. (Social Media Slant)

2 YouTube Statistics

75. YouTube reaches more U.S. adults 18-24 years old than any cable network. (SteamFeed)

76. U.S. marketers spent $2.8 billion on online video advertising in 2013. (MediaPost)

6 Pinterest Statistics

77. Pinterest outperforms Twitter and LinkedIn in the time spent on each network. (SteamFeed)

78. Almost half of all Pinterest activity is on tablets. (SteamFeed)

79. For online retailers, Pinterest (24.3%) and Facebook (24.2%) drive the highest share of social revenue. (AddShoppers)

80. Pinterest now hosts roughly 30 billion pins on 750 million boards. (Social Media Slant)

81. 100,000 of Pinterest’s members are retailers.  (Social Media Slant)

82. 92% of all pins are posted by women, and as of April 2014, there were 15 times more pins by women than by men. (Social Media Slant)

5 SEO and SEM Statistics

83. One-third of all organic search clicks on Google are on the first result. (SteamFeed)

84. 43% of all online advertising dollars are spent on search ads. U.S. marketers spent $18.4 billion on paid search ads in 2013. (MediaPost)

85. 72% of PR agencies are now offering SEO services. (MarketingProfs)

86. Each day, 20% of the terms typed into Google have never been searched before. (#Socialnomics 2014)

87. By 2018, one of every $10 spent on digital marketing services will be spent on SEO. (MediaPost)

7 Email Marketing Statistics

88. By industry, the highest average email click-through rates are in media/publishing (20%), software/SaaS (19%), and technology equipment/hardware (14%). The lowest are in real estate (8%) along with education/healthcare and nonprofits (both at 7%). (MarketingSherpa)

89. As of 2013, there were 3.6 billion email accounts (roughly one for every two people on earth). (HubSpot)

90. 91% of consumers check their email daily. (HubSpot)

91. 74% of consumers prefer to receive commercial communications via email. (HubSpot)

92. Suppressing anyone in your list who hasn’t engaged with your emails in over a year increases your deliverability rate by 3-5% immediately. (HubSpot)

93. For ecommerce merchants, the average value of Twitter share is 85 cents and the average value of a Facebook “like” is $1.41. But the average value of an email share is $12.10. (AddShoppers)

94. Also for ecommerce merchants, email subscribers convert at more than twice the rate of those reached through Google+ or Facebook shares. (AddShoppers)

12 Mobile Marketing Statistics

95. Half of all clicks on mobile banner ads are accidental. (SteamFeed)

96. CMOs say their top two areas for digital technology investments over the next 3-5 years are mobile applications and advanced (predictive) analytics, each at 94%. (MarketingLand)

97. U.S. marketers spent $7.1 billion on mobile ads in 2013–more than double the amount spent in 2012. (MediaPost)

98. 61% of marketers specify social media as the most critical area of focus over the next 12 months, followed closely by mobile at 51%.  (FierceCMO)

99. 48% of emails are opened on mobile devices. But only 11% of emails are optimized for mobile. And 69% of mobile users delete emails that aren’t optimized for mobile. (HubSpot)

100. 25% of emails are opened on iPhones. (HubSpot)

101. As of January 2014, 58% of American adults owned smartphones and 42% owned tablets. (Pew Research Center)

102. By the end of 2015, 81% of all U.S. cell phone users will have a smartphone. (Social Media Slant)

103. 63% of adult cell owners use their phones to go online; 34% of cell internet users go online mostly using their phones. (Pew Research Center)

104. 81% of cell phone owners use their phones for text messaging; 74% use their phone to get directions or other information based on their current location; and 52% use it to send or receive email. (Pew Research Center)

105. Many mobile marketers still don’t get it though. Nearly 70% of cell phone owners say they receive unwanted sales/marketing calls, spam or text messages on their phones. 25% say they receive these unwanted calls and texts at least weekly. (Pew Research Center)

106. Mobile sharing grew 2.6 times faster than desktop sharing through the first part of 2014, and now accounts for the majority of social actions. (Social Media Slant)

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19 More Outstanding Social Media Marketing Guides

Tuesday, January 13th, 2015

While social media marketing has become commonplace, questions about how to optimize the use of social channels and networks, and how to stand out from the crowd, remain.

How often should you re-share content on social networks?

Image credit: KISSmetrics

The post 23 Outstanding Social Media Marketing Guides, published here a few weeks ago, answered questions about social media trends, the evolution of social media marketing best practices, and how to optimize use of visual content.

This follow-up post answers several more, such as: what are the best social networks for b2b social media marketing? What are the best and worst times to post updates? How can different networks be used most effectively for lead generation? Which tactics work best today for building a social media following and growing traffic?

Find the answers to those questions and others here in 19 more outstanding social media marketing guides from the past year.

Five Simple Rules for B2B Social Media Marketing Success by Marissa’s Picks

Marissa PickMarissa Pick (no relation, though I joke that she’s my adopted cousin) outlines a handful of rules for successful B2B social media marketing, among them “knowing what to do is just as important as knowing what not to do” (“Every social media campaign needs a strategy, and it’s crucial to understand your goals. Knowing what you want to accomplish and how you will measure success is crucial before you launch any campaign”), “engagement = essential,” and “know your audience.”

The Top 8 Social Networks For Business by B2B Marketing Insider

Michael BrennerMichael Brenner examines findings from Adobe regarding the top social networks for business in the view of CMOs, based on their value for SEO, brand awareness, customer communication, and traffic generation. In addition to the “Big Four,” the findings and associated infographic looked at SlideShare (the “new kid on the block”) as well as “niche players” Google+, Pinterest and Instagram.

How To Choose The Right Social Media Networks For Your B2B Business by Search Engine Land

Jayson DeMersJayson DeMers details seven factors to consider when determining where to focus social media marketing efforts (such as conversions and customer value: “Do visitors bounce immediately off your page, or are they reading your content, amplifying your message and becoming customers? A…detailed analysis can help you determine not only which networks are sending you traffic, but which ones are sending you valuable traffic”) along with seven types of social networks to leverage.

50 Expert Tips for Getting Started on Social Media by Constant Contact on SlideShare

This presentation provides dozens of one-sentence (mostly) social media tips from top experts inlcuding Rebekah Radice, Robert Caruso (“In social media, content leads to conversations, conversations build relationships, and relationships result in ROI”), Kim Garst, Mike Stelzner (“Study your competition and watch where they participate in social dialog. Don’t reinvent the wheel”), and Ann Handley among others.

The Dead Zones: When Not to Post on Social Media by Cool Infographics

Randy KrumRandy Krum displays a pair of infographics illustrating the best and worst times to post on social media. The worst times seem generally intuitive (e.g., Facebook between midnight and 8:00 a.m.), though a few are odd (don’t post to LinkedIn during the workday?!). The best times, meanwhile, are shown in pretty short windows (e.g., Twitter between 1:00 and 3:00 p.m.). Interesting – though your mileage may vary.

Survey Reveals 11% Increase in Marketers’ Ability to Measure Social Media ROI by Social Media Explorer

Nichole KellyNichole Kelly dives into research findings from Social Media Examiner showing that more than a third of marketers now say they are able to measure ROI from social media activities; but 88% say they “want to know how to measure the ROI from social media” (so, a quarter of marketers say they can measure social ROI, but also don’t know how?); that half of marketers say they’ve seen improved sales from social media; and other interesting facts and stats, including my favorite: “85% of marketers have NO plans to use Snapchat. (Thank goodness!).”

16 Resources to Generate Leads With Social Media by Social Media Examiner

Debra EckerlingDebra Eckerling outlines a collection of helpful resources for generating leads through Facebook (e.g., how to set up a Facebook page for lead generation and methods for generating email leads through Facebook), Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, and Pinterest.

Social Media Lead Generation: Best Tips From The Experts by Heidi Cohen

Heidi CohenHeidi Cohen passes along guidance on “the best way to use social media to generate leads” from 22 social media experts including Michael Brenner, Jeff Cohen, Jason Falls, Neal Schaffer (“The best way to generate leads is to utilize sponsored posts on the relevant social media platform where your customers are utilizing best practices for that platform. Social networks are in business and want you to be successful in your advertising”), and Deb Weinstein.

10 Powerful Social Media Infographics and Resources to Build Your Following by SumAll

Brian HonigmanBrian Honigman presents 10 infographics covering everything from how to create the “perfect” post on various social media platforms and how to size profile images for popular social networks to social media facts and figures (hmm, that sounds familiar), user growth trends across platforms, and the best and worst times to post on social media sites.

7 Social Media Monitoring Tips To Help Your Business Spy Like The NSA by Top Dog Social Media

Melonie DodaroMelonie Dodaro shares sever highly useful tips for finding people who are sharing your content, discovering who is mentioning your brand or products, finding influencers in your industry, and find “super-targeted” followers such as who is following a particular person or brand and lives in a specific city.

The Art of Creating Perfect Social Media Posts – infographic by Digital Information World

Irfan AhmadNoting that “Each social media operates a bit differently, and each brand’s followers have their own preferences and moods…(so) there is no One-Size-Fits-All trick or strategy” for “perfect” social media posts, Irfan Ahmad shares the essential elements of a highly shareable blog post along with an infographic showing best practices for promoting content on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Vine, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, and Google+.

How to Easily Double Your Traffic from Social Media by KISSmetrics

Garrett MoonGarrett Moon offers helpful guidance on how to increase social media traffic by sharing each piece of your content more than once on various social networks, along with five tips on how not to overdo re-sharing and risk appearing to be a spammer.

5 Social Media Tasks You Might be Neglecting and You Shouldn’t by Reviewz ‘n’ Tips

Daniel SharkovDaniel Sharkov offers helpful tips on a handful of social media tactics you should be using, covering LinkedIn (“Did you know that unlike most social networks, a rather high percentage [about 20%] of your [LinkedIn] contacts actually sees your updates?”), StumbleUpon, Google+, Triberr, and Facebook.

Why social media is losing its sparkle by iMedia Connection

Rebecca LiebThe always fascinating Rebecca Lieb contends that “email and search now both enjoy wallpaper status. They’ve faded into the background. This is absolutely not meant to diminish the importance or significance of either as a marketing channel…(rather) ‘wallpapering’ is a sign of maturity and essential integration into the larger marketing organization,” and that social media is now approaching that status as well. What do you think?

Social Media 101: Branding for the PR-impaired marketer by MarketingSherpa Blog

Maria Lopez FernandezEveryone knows social media has become an essential channel for marketing and content distribution, but Maria Lopez Fernandez reminds readers that not all social networks are created equal: each has its own distinct characteristics, uses, and etiquette, and she provides guidance here on how to make the best use of Facebook, Twitter, and blogging – as well as how to put it all together.

The Ulimate Cheat Sheet for Social Media Dimensions by likeable media

Samy SimorangkirSamy Simorangkir shares an infographic which details the required image dimensions for social media profiles on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, YouTube, Instagram, and Pinterest, along with half a dozen “additional rules of thumb to keep in mind” for optimizing profiles on the largest networks.

30+ Ways To Use YouTube Effectively by Small Business Trends

TJ McCueWriting that online video “is a terrific way for small business owners to compete with the big brands. But creating effective (as in watchable) content and then promoting it can be intimidating,” the brilliant TJ McCue has compiled a list of 30 resources for small business, from expert online training to helpful guides, infographics, online video editing tools and more.

5 stages to unlocking social media’s full potential by iMedia Connection

Scott FasserScott Fasser believes it’s a “colossal mistake” to try to use social media to persuade your target audience to buy. Instead, he lays out a five-stage process for businesses to evolve their social media activities from “nascent to awesome.” At the base stage, companies are listening to buyers and watching competitors; by stage five, a company is truly executing as a social business.

What You Need to Know About Open Graph Meta Tags for Total Facebook and Twitter Mastery by KISSmetrics

Jacek BlautJacek Blaut explains in detail how to use Facebook Open Graph tags to obtain “a degree of control…over how information travels from a third-party website to Facebook when a page is shared (or liked, etc.),” why marketers need to know about Open Graph, and how to implement these, as well as how to use Twitter Cards to “stand out from the crowd” on Twitter by generating additional content from your tweets.

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22 Noteworthy Content Marketing Guides and Tips

Tuesday, December 30th, 2014

Content marketing is a hot topic. According to Google Trends, searches for “content marketing” have increased 150% in the past two years. 90% of companies now use content marketing, and collectively they will spent $135 million on digital marketing content this year.

7 steps to an optimized content marketing strategy

Image credit: Intergage

Yet marketers still have many questions about content marketing strategy and tactics. How do you create a content marketing strategy? What role does visual content play? How should success be measured? Is there too much content being produced?

Find the answers to those questions and more here in 22 noteworthy content marketing guides. While some of these posts date back the beginning of 2014, all remain relevant and useful.

10 Things You Must Know About Your Audience! by The Marketing Nut
***** 5 STARS

Pam MooreWriting that “You must know who your audience is, who you are and how you can help them solve problems. It’s only after you have this foundational knowledge that you can determine your social strategy and approach for building your social media plan,” frequent best-of honoree Pam Moore offers a free audience analysis worksheet and suggests 10 key questions to ask when developing content plans, starting with questions to identify your audience and key pain points and concluding with the emotional reasons customers buy from you.

How to measure content marketing success by iMedia Connection

Michael EstrinMichael Estrin shares half a dozen insights on effectively measuring content marketing success, such as “business goals still matter” (views and engagement are nice, but is your audience following through by taking a targeted action?) and while numbers matter, so does quality (content “will fail if it doesn’t align with a larger strategy”).

Optimize Content Marketing Strategy in 7 Steps by Business2Community

Angela HausmanAngela Hausman expounds on an infographic which illustrates “how to optimize content marketing strategy” in seven steps, starting with setting goals and conducting research, and progressing through promoting your content and analyzing results (“Use the KPI’s created earlier to monitor your performance. Keep doing things that work and tweak things that DON’T work or get rid of them”).

what is awesome content and why do you need it? by bowden2bowden blog

Randy BowdenRandy Bowden outlines a four-step process for creating awesome client, from identifying and getting to know your audience (“In order to capture the attention of your readers, you need to know how to capture their attention. In order to know how to capture their attention, you need to get to know them“) to including a call to action in the conclusion of your content.

The 5 biggest myths about content marketing by iMedia Connection

Tom ForanTom Foran debunks “five of the most common myths and (tries) to set the record straight for marketers.” For example, “Myth No. 2: Creating content is the hard part.” Actually, according to Foran, most of the work is in promotion. “Creating the content first and figuring out where it should go later sounds like a surefire way to waste time and resources. Marketers should instead consider starting with a distribution strategy that answers…key questions.”

12 Most Innovative Ways to Create Content That Gets Shared by 12 Most

Rebekah RadiceRebekah Radice offers a dozen tips for “creating compelling content that engages your audience and inspires them to share that content,” from analyzing competitors and knowing your ideal reader (starting with a customer persona) through sharing success stories, sharing newsworthy content, and building an email list.

Surviving “Content Shock” and the Impending Content Marketing Collapse by Copyblogger

Sonia SimoneWhile acknowledging that “there is too much of some types of content,” the brilliant and prolific Sonia Simone makes the case that despite the deluge of online content today, content marketing is far from dead, as “There is no glut of quality content…we are a long way from the day when too much high-quality, Rainmaker-style content is being created…there is not a glut of content that is useful, passionate, individual, and interesting.”

What You Absolutely Need To Know About Content Marketing by The B Squared Media Blog

Brooke BallardBrooke Ballard explains three “must-knows” about content marketing, starting with “Content Marketing Always Starts With A Strategy…everything starts with a ‘why.’ Why are we creating this blog post / eBook / status update? What do we want people to do with this piece of content; what’s the purpose?” Each point also includes several “things to consider,” such as “Can you repurpose old content for use in the future?”

Content Marketing Editorial Calendar Template by The Marketing Nut

Pam Moore (again) offers practical, actionable guidance on how to organize and create a content marketing editorial calendar, complete with a downloadable template and all of the elements that should be part of the calendar (from weekly and monthly themes through primary keywords and categories to supporting media and syndication.

Will The Content Marketing Trends Continue? It Depends On Proving Your ROI by Forbes

Benjy BoxerAfter sharing some compelling statistics–“the content marketing industry (has) grown to a $44 billion industry…93% of B2B brands and 90% of B2C brands are now using content marketing to educate consumers about their brands. (Yet) despite the overwhelming interest in content marketing, 55% of B2B content marketers think their campaigns are ineffective”—Benjy Boxer contends that content marketing efforts need to show ROI, and provides an example worksheet.

The 3 C’s of Successful Content Marketing by iMedia Connection

Nate HolmesNate Holmes outlines the “3C’s” of content marketing execution, starting with create [italix]: “Creating quality content is the heart of content marketing. Relevant, valuable content is what will make your audience stop to think and behave differently…There must be a purpose to content creation; a goal…Understand who your audience is and what they want to know…Offer what no one else can.”

5 Content Marketing Trends & Predictions for 2014 by Web Content Blog

Gazalla GayaFor the most part, these predictions from Gazalla Gaya will hold true for 2015 as well. For each trend here, she also lists several helpful related ideas for content marketing success, among them “Create a definite social media strategy in place to promote your blog posts, whitepapers, case studies and seminars” and “Outline a strategy that works for different devices.”

10 Reasons Visual Content will Dominate 2014 by Advanced Lead Generation Marketing Blog

James SchererJames Scherer outlines 10 reasons to incorporate videos and images into content marketing efforts, including both stats you’ve likely seen before (e.g., “videos on landing pages increase average page conversion rates by 86%) and a few you may not have (“67% of consumers consider clear, detailed images to carry more weight than product information or customer ratings”).

Peak Content: When Does Content Marketing Hit Its Breaking Point? by HubSpot

Drew WilliamsDrew Williams presents the concept of the “engagement ladder,” which helps map marketing content to all phases of the buying decision process, from solution education (such as analyst reports or industry studies) through vendor education and vendor consideration to decision support (e.g., an offer of an assessment or ROI calculator).

31 Content Marketing Ideas that Will Revolutionize Your Business by Marketo Content Marketing Blog

Joe PulizziJoe Pulizzi (who knows just a bit about content marketing) shares a “list of 31 ideas and thoughts, which I believe will make an immediate impact on your content marketing, even if you only execute a few,” such as launching content marketing projects together with partners; keeping your social media influencer list up to date; and setting up editorial calendars for each of your key markets or products.

Content Marketing in 2014: Are You Prepared? by HubSpot

Kieran FlanaganKieran Flanagan writes that content marketing has largely replaced link building as a primary SEO tactic, then explores processes for proving the value of content, scaling content, and promoting content: “When it comes to distribution, marketers need to focus on increasing the size of their available audience (by increasing their blog readership, email lists, and number of social followers), but also increasing the number of distribution channels they have,” coordinating promotion efforts across all of the channels in the web presence optimization (WPO) model.

The 3 Goals For Your Content Marketing by B2B Marketing Insider

Michael BrennerGiven that buyers now complete 60-70% of their purchase process before contacting a vendor sales rep, Michael Brenner believes it’s critical to reach buyers through content marketing, and that all content marketing programs should be based on the same three fundamental goals, starting with reach: “reach measures can be criticized as vanity metrics. But it’s important to be building a healthy audience of the right people and to track those measures over time.”

3 Types of Schema Markup Content Marketers Should Know by Small Business Trends

Ann SmartyObserving that “It’s harder and harder to get above-the-fold Google rankings, especially for the competitive queries,” frequent best-of honoree Ann Smarty delves into how Schema markup works, and three types that content marketers should be aware of: VideoObject schema, Review schema, and Article schema.

7 Ways to Boost SEO Results for Your Video Content Marketing by B2B PR Sense Blog

Oren SmithNoting that “71% of businesses across a variety of industries have increased company funding for online video marketing budgets,” Oren Smith looks at more than half a dozen ways to improve video SEO, such as targeting the right keywords and using supporting images and text: “images, links, and accompanying text all assist search engines with determining page quality. In a ranking sense, a page with nothing but video content on it isn’t attractive.”

5 Ways to Create A Better Content Strategy in 2014 by unbounce

Tommy WalkerWritten a year ago but still timely, Tommy Walker shares his five-step process to make “content more strategic, efficient and powerful,” starting with creating “content for a small group of real people” and progressing through fleshing out a content calendar, complete with examples.

The Future of Content: Upcoming Trends in 2014 by Moz

Stephanie ChangIn another older but still relevant post, Stephanie Chang delves into four key content marketing trends, including “Determining the key metrics to measure content’s success will be more important,” an exploration of the varied metrics available for determining success and which are most valuable.

Want to be a Better Content Marketer? Think Like a Journalist by Blue Kite Marketing

Laura ClickAfter showcasing an example from her alma mater’s journalism school, Laura Click writes “companies that are doing brand journalism well aren’t just throwing a blog on their website. They are creating an entirely new destination for readers that looks less like a corporate website and more like a news magazine. This gives companies the opportunity to be the go-to resource in their industry.” She then serves up six practical tips for thinking like a journalist.

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Nine Practical Guides to Public Speaking and Presentations

Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

Whether you’re the type of person who eagerly dashes off a proposal for every speaking opportunity that comes your way, or the type who avoids the spotlight as much as possible, public speaking—delivering presentations to our peers, customers, prospects, or other audiences—is a part of virtually every marketing and PR professional’s life. And something most of us could improve at.

Practical Guides to Better PresentationsHow can you get and keep a roomful of people engaged with your presentation? Visually optimize the content you deliver? Effectively use humor? Tell a story that keeps listeners focused on you—instead of checking email on their phones?

Find the answers to those questions and more in these helpful guides from professional speakers. Some date back nearly two years, but all are still relevant and useful.

How To Stand In Front Of A Room Full Of People And Tell A Stellar Story by Fast Company

Jane PorterJane Porter passes along five valuable tips from master storyteller Kevin Allison. Among them: realize you’re never up there alone (think of it as a conversation, not a monologue); decide where you want to end up and work backwards; and vary your pace (“the juicier moments in your story should take up proportionately more room”).

The Science Behind Storytelling — and Why It Matters by The Official SlideShare Blog

Gavin McMahonNoting that Pixar continually tells great stories in its movies, Gavin McMahon shares 22 rules for storytelling from Emma Coats, former story artist at Pixar. He highlights two rules in particular that are essential to telling a great story: tailor your content to the audience, and structure your story (think hook, meat, payoff).

Event Marketing – The One Secret To Killer Events by B2B Marketing Insider

Michael BrennerMichael Brenner writes that the teams behind the best events think in terms of “multi-format, multi-channel and a steady and continuous promotion of great content. The event is seen more like a conversation that continues well before and long after the physical part.” He also shares specific tips from three professional event planners.

15 Presentation & Public Speaking Tips that Rock by Content Marketing Institute

Joe PulizziBased on his extensive experience both delivering and listening to presentations at social media and marketing events, Joe Pulizzi lists 15 helpful tips for better presentations, such as putting your Twitter handle on every slide; walking around; smiling a lot (it’s contagious); and “switching the flow and telling a story every eight minutes.”

7 Tips to Transform Your SlideShares From Good to Great by HubSpot

Erik DevaneyErik Devaney provides advice for content creators on how to avoid getting stuck in the “mediocrity loop” and instead embrace the improvement loop when creating new content. His seven practical recommendations for continually creating better Slideshare decks include choosing the perfect fonts (“a bold, stylized font for headers, and…a simple, easy-to-read font for body text”); using contrasting colors; and placing text legibly on top of images using a semi-transparent overlay.

What You Don’t Know About Speaking by Communication Rebel

Michelle MazurPublic speaking rock star Michelle Mazur shares a video outlining a handful of tips from Darren LaCroix, a past winner of the Toastmasters Superbowl. Among Darren’s recommendations for being a more successful public speaker: let go of the ME mentality – “On that stage when you are focused on the me, you are not focused on the ‘you’ in the audience. It dampens your connection with the audience.”

How To Be Funny: Stand-Up Comic Takes Public Speakers to School by DIY Blogger NET

Dino DoganDino Dogan presents a video interview with speaker, writer and standup comic Brendan Fitzgibbons about how to be funny (rather than intense) when presenting. It’s not easy (at least not for many us), but it is powerful. Brendan recommends starting off by showing vulnerability with some self-deprecating humor.

A 47-Point Guide for First-Time Webinar Success by MarketingProfs

In this timeless piece, Agnieszka Wilinska presents four dozen helpful tips covering all the bases for delivering a successful webinar, from focusing on providing value and setting goals (“If the webinar is designed to produce sales, set your expectations in units and in dollars and cents”) to polling participants, managing and concluding the meeting.

13 Ways to be an Awesome Guest Speaker by SlideShare

Barbara NixonBarbara Nixon shares a baker’s dozen recommendations for delivering as a guest speaker. She recommends starting by learning about the audience and tailoring your presentation for them, as well as creating a presentation with the flexibility to expand or contract the content. She also suggests being prepared for the technology (including the Internet connection) to fail, with a backup plan to keep the show going on.

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11 Thought-Provoking Guides to Content Marketing for 2014

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

A few months ago, the Webbiquity blog celebrated content marketing week—six posts in eight days showcasing the best content marketing insights and guides from the year, starting with 30 Remarkable Content Marketing Facts and Statistics and culminating with 14 Best Content Marketing Tips, Tactics and Techniques.

The burst of content marketing content (pardon the repetition) produced some interesting results in terms of traffic. Compared to a normal Tuesday-to-Tuesday period on the blog, Content Marketing Week had:

Content Marketing Week Traffic Impact

 

  • • Twice the normal number of total visits;
  • • Five times the normal referral traffic from LinkedIn;
  • • Four times the typical number of visits driven by Twitter;
  • • Two times the average weekly visits from Facebook; and
  • • About the same number of Google search visits as a typical week (not surprising; one wouldn’t expect a short-term burst of traffic to have a significant immediate impact on search visits).

Content marketing remains a hot topic, as practitioners continue to ask questions, like: what are the hottest trends in content marketing for 2014? What impact are blogs having on corporate website traffic in search? Which content formats are most (and least) effective? How can marketers do better at creating “content with purpose”?

Find those answers and many more here in almost a dozen helpful content marketing guides.

7 Steps to Successful Content Marketing [Infographic] by Pamorama

Pam DyerPam Dyer showcases a noteworthy infographic which illustrates seven steps for content marketing success, starting with defining your business goals (“There is a sense of urgency about content marketing, which is leading many brands to jump in without setting clear-cut goals — a recipe for failure”) and progressing through publishing, promotion, and analysis (“a key part of figuring out how to resonate with your audience”).

Leading Experts Predict The Content Marketing Trends for 2014 by Search Engine Journal

Murray NewlandsAccording to Murray Newlands, “As we look towards 2014, it’s obvious that content marketing has already become the hottest trend in the industry—the go-to strategy for most, if not all, Internet marketers.” He shares predictions from three experts, with ideas from the increased importance of strategy and “performance marketing” to moving “away from the cheap, clickbait content that inflates ‘vanity metrics,’ and move more towards creating niche-specific, high quality content that provides values to their followers.”

Content Is King And The Corporate Website Is Dead by Forbes

Michael BrennerWell, no, corporate websites aren’t really dead of course (though the headline does grab attention), and this post deserves a more detailed response (forthcoming), but for the moment—Michael Brenner does provide some arresting statistics (e.g., “nearly 70% of Fortune 100 corporate websites experienced declines in traffic [in 2013], with an average drop of 23%!”) and worthy suggestions on how to replace the typical “online brochure” type website with something far more engaging and interactive.

Infographics Accelerating Online Marketing Efforts by iMedia Connection

Neal LeavittNeal Leavitt notes that while infographics are hardly new, they do remain compelling and valuable for both social sharing and SEO, though going forward “With thousands of infographics going online every day, it’s essential that brands release infographics with high quality design and research to see any success – and to get this kind of quality, brands have to pay for experts.”

Better Content Marketing: Content with purpose by Sark eMedia

Sarah ArrowSarah Arrow writes that too many business blogs contain helpful content, but lack purpose: “what’s the thing you would like the reader to do after reading your post?” She lists several potential purpose options (to drive traffic to a web page, improve SEO, boost credibility, build an opt-in list, etc.) then offers tips on how to create “purpose-filled content.”

The changing state of content marketing by iag.me

Ian Anderson GrayIan Anderson Gray shares an infographic depicting the (potential) future of content marketing, full of facts and statistics such as that industry news and blogs are the second most-effective content types for social sharing (with visuals—such as photos, videos and infographics—being the most effective); three-fourths of marketers plan to spend more on content marketing in 2014; and emphasis on quality and originality in content creation will increase.

8 Steps To Become A Brand Publisher by B2B Marketing Insider

Michael Brenner (again) shares a presentation detailing the steps to becoming a “brand publisher” (replete with a lot of amusing photos), among them: creating an effective content strategy (e.g., “delivering the content your audience needs, in all the places they go”); building a content (creation) team; and answering customer questions.

24 Epic Ideas for Connecting with Your Customers – Content Marketing Playbook by Content Marketing Institute by Cox Business BLUE

This presentation from CMI steps through best practices for marketing with a wide variety of content types, from blogs (used by 76% of North American B2B vendors and viewed as “effective” by 62%), eNewsletters and case studies to mobile apps, print magazines and annual reports.

Six B2B tech video “worst practices” (including some of mine) by 2-Minute Explainer Blog

Bruce McKenzieBruce McKenzie helpfully details half a dozen “worst practices” in video to avoid, such as offering “wishy-washy calls to action,” using buttons that “don’t shout ‘video,'” and relying too much on the audio portion of the output (” Rule of thumb: if it would work as a podcast, you’re not getting your money’s worth in video”).

What Content Marketing Needs to Rule in the Post-Advertising Age by Content Marketing Institute

Kirk CheyfitzStaking out the position that “To wrest advertising from the cold, dead hands of the traditional agencies, the content industry is going to have to master and improve some basic brand management skills, including branding, strategic planning, media planning, and measurement,” Kirk Cheyfitz proposes a new entity which he refers to as the “content advertising agency” and identifies five critical elements and functions of such an organization.

Content Is The Top Priority For The Social Business by B2B Marketing Insider

Michael Brenner (yet again) reports on a study from Altimeter which revealed, among other findings, that “content marketing was listed as the top priority for social media activities” (though it didn’t even make the list of top priorities as recently as 2010); “only 17% of marketers are truly strategic in their social strategies across the enterprise;” and many organizations suffer from “‘social anarchy’ or uncoordinated social activity happening across organizations because of silos, a lack of leadership, and a clear social vision” (which demonstrates the importance of incorporating a web presence optimization framework into digital marketing strategy).

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