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5 Resources You Can Use To Create Killer Content

It's one of the most difficult and time consuming tasks for any business that is undertaking a digital strategy. Content creation isn't necessarily difficult, however creating content that creates links, social sharing and addresses a problem for your core audience is. First off there is so much content out there at the fingertips of people searching for information it makes it difficult to craft a piece of information that hits the mark. It's even harder to do it on an ongoing basis. We're big supporters of content as it gives you as a business an opportunity to disseminate your knowledge to your potential audience. The way you distribute your content is just as important as what you create, however you can't publish or promote anything if you don't put the time into creating it first.

If you browse Neil Patel's blog you will get an understanding of just how much time he puts into crafting each piece of content he creates and the focus of addressing his audiences problems and solving it with what he writes. Not everyone has the time to write content as you are typically focusing on the day to day tasks of running your business. We hope these 5 quick tips will help save you some time and get you on your way to creating content that attracts, converts and helps your audience.

Creating Catchy Headlines

A headline is the hook that attracts people and gets them interested in reading your piece of content. Crafting a headline that addresses a need and drive visitor actions isn't easy. It takes time to test, test and test again to find a strategy that works. A common theme that people use just like this article is to use a number and a hook. Here are a few examples:

  • 13 reasons why X widget perform better than Y widget
  • 7 skills you need to be a better salesperson
  • 14 ways you can grow your business without spending a fortune

You should try and keep your headlines simple & concise but try and use a number that isn't generally used. For example people use three or four a lot of the time. Try and use 13 or as many as you possibly can. The more the better.

A great tool you can use is the Hubspot blog topic generator. You input some nouns that you would like to write about and it will spit out some headlines. This tool might get your creative juices flowing and enable you to think of a new topic or way of writing your article that may resonate with your audience.

Sourcing Visuals That Make An Impact

The best thing you can support your content with is images and video. There are several ways you can do this and all of it is free. Try and avoid taking images off Google or taking them off somebody else's website. You may have issues with copyright and it's always a better idea to have a library of your own images and visuals that you can utilise across a range of different channels to support your content promotion. Here is what we recommend you use:

  • Getty Images - Getty provide a service where you can embed images on your blog with the proper accreditation for the photographer and it's free
  • Free stock image sites - examples such as picjumbo, flickr creative commons and unsplash are great resources to collect and use high quality images
  • Adobe stock - if you are looking to go professional and invest some resources into your blog you could use a service such as Adobe Stock

What About An Infographic?

Infographics are great pieces of content because they are great for:

  • Social sharing
  • Condensing information and giving visual impact
  • Creating links by allowing visitors to embed the infographic on their own website

Infographics sound good in theory, but they usually take a lot of time to create and do well. If you are really trying to generate some links and social shares it may be worth investing in a professional design for an infographic based on a piece of content you have created or are thinking of creating. The best tool you can use to create a cost effective infographic is Canva.

Canva is a tool that allows anyone to create graphics with a drop and drag do it yourself platform. You can turn your infographic around in a few hours as opposed to days and weeks and you can focus your efforts on promoting it.

What About A Copywriter?

The hardest part of content creation is making it a habit and getting in the routine of thinking up content ideas and then creating them. Using a headline creator you can get some ideas for potential pieces of information you want to create for your audience. We know that good content creation doesn't necessarily mean just writing articles for your blog. It usually is the first step in the content creation process. From that first piece of content you can create videos, infographics and podcasts. One of the ways you can eliminate the routine problem of getting your content written is to use a copywriter. We would recommend using a copywriter to create a 500 word article that you can then use as the base to build a 750-1000 word piece of content for your blog. Starting from a base with good well written content will help you then add your knowledge and expertise and turn a good piece of content into a great one. There are many copywriting services online. You can find your own freelancer on something like Upwork or you can post content ideas directly to potential writers on a platform like Copify.

Create A Plan

The best thing you can do when thinking about creating content for your audience is developing a plan. This plan should include:

  • Content themes
  • Content titles and what problems you're addressing
  • Call to action from content
  • Who is the content for
  • How you will distribute the content e.g. blog, email, social media
  • What other types of content could you create from this article - YouTube video, Infographic, Podcast

Invest time into the planning stage and you will be well on your way to creating killer content that is not only useful for your audience but should deliver real results for your business over time if you do it right. We'd love to hear what tools have helped you create content for your customers and potential customers.

Related Tags: Digital Marketing Newcastle | Social Media Marketing Newcastle

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How Much Should I Spend Marketing My Business Online?

Many businesses are hesitant to dip their toes into the world of digital marketing. Many know that they need to be doing it and usually lack the knowledge or expertise to understand where, how and why to allocate resources to certain activities. It may be that you hire an agency to implement a range of strategies or a bring a resource in-house to grow your marketing efforts online. The first thing that is important to understand is that there is no one size fits all. Different business, different markets and different competitors will require varying plans to achieve success. There are multiple ways your business can market itself online. Most businesses know about search engine optimisation, search engine marketing and they've heard of terms like content marketing & re-marketing among others. You know about it, you know it's hard to do and you don't know how much to spend or if you should even spend anything at all. So where do you start?

The first thing you should do is to analyse your business and understand where your customers are online and what they are doing. It's no good to decide you're going to start doing an SEO campaign just because you think high rankings on Google are important. Don't get me wrong the majority of the time this will be the case. Everything you do should have a business case and a measurable return on investment. What traffic to your website can you generate if you undertake an SEO campaign? How many leads can you generate? If more of your customers are reachable through a channel on social media why aren't you targeting them on this channel instead and will it be more cost effective?

The great thing about digital marketing is that everything you do can be measured. How much you spend should be directly correlated with what return your business can generate from a particular activity. Implementing a marketing plan online should be fluid and the periods you measure results and return on should be short to allow for adjustments of your plan. There is no use in locking yourself into 2 years worth of SEO before you can even measure if the results both intangible and tangible are delivering bottom line growth to your business. The best course of attack is as follows:

  1. Identify your ideal audience
  2. Identify where you will find them online - social media, YouTube, search engines, other websites
  3. Build a complete strategy and invest resources into each channel - SEO, SEM, Social Media Marketing, Content
  4. Have measurable and reviewable goals - X amount of traffic growth to the website, Y number of lead generated for your sales team, Z number of sales
  5. At the end of your review periods develop an ongoing budget or investment plan to grow your campaign

The more you test and measure your strategies the better you will be able to assess if investing money into a particular marketing activity is worthwhile or not. You may find that your social media marketing in conjunction with the content you are creating is delivering a consistent stream of traffic and a high conversion rate. The more you refine your audience, the better your conversion rate becomes and the more money you invest the trend should be expected to continue. If paid ads on search engines is delivering less than desirable results divert increased funds to another marketing activity that is performing strongly. Adapt, learn and grow through continual measurement, monitoring and reporting.

The best tool for reporting and management is Google Analytics so learn how to setup Goals so you can track conversions on your website and where they originate from. Using this information you can develop a plan to create a successful digital marketing campaign. You don't always need an agency so make sure you understand how to measure everything you do online before you engage one as this will help you weed out the good ones from the bad ones.

Related Tags: Digital Marketing Newcastle | SEO Company Newcastle

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The Basics of Powerful Content Marketing

If you ever watch Masterchef or other such programmes, you’ll often notice contestants trying to match flavours to create an outstanding dish. With content marketing, it’s vital to use both ingredients to craft a superb finished product. Many businesses, when creating a web presence, focus on the content and what it has to achieve. This may then end up as a ‘content rich but readability poor’ concoction, and simply fail to effectively market that business and its products or services.

Let’s examine the key stages that will allow the creation and use of effective content marketing strategies. Before we start, we should remember that strategy is key to whatever you do. Developing a content marketing strategy covers key areas such as subjects and the types of content to use for different platforms. Through all of this, one key is vital: to quickly engage with your website visitors, tell them what they need to know, and then drive them onwards to take whatever action you wish them to.

Think like a customer

Many people, when creating their online content, do so from the point of a business insider. This is natural as they have the knowledge base to do so. However, the danger then is that the content talks about that organisation and its products and services from a ‘proud insider’ point of view. It talks about what the creator thinks is important and how the writer sees the business.

However, when an online search is being conducted, the person doing so is seeking out the solution to a problem they have, or a source to meet a need or fulfil a want. What the product or service offers is then judged through that filter. Understanding this, you can start to analyse the words and phrases they will use in their search. With this information gained, it is then much easier to write content which will achieve your search engine optimisation & business objectives.

Truly understand these customers

To create effective content, you want to build up as detailed a picture of your key customer base or buyer group as possible. If you do this, you can then create content that not only achieves the previous point, but also talks to them in a way they welcome, appreciate, and are comfortable with. You can understand what they don’t want as much as what they do.

Examples of this are easily found. Businesses often fill their web content with the jargon of their business, written by those who don’t appreciate that potential customers frequently have a level of expertise and understanding that is nowhere near that of the business itself. Often, such terminology might have to be included if it’s part of a valid description; if so, add a simple explanation.

Some customers will already be knowledgeable but that’s okay. They can skim read the simpler copy, and still find exactly what they want in the content. In a way, what you are often trying to do is turn the inexpert visitor into a smarter customer!

Craft your copy like a journalist, editor, and designer

Suppose you are writing 600 words of copy for a specific web page. It’s useful to write more and then edit it down into a sharper finish. Equally, don’t put artificial limits on the amount of content you write. Unlike print articles where there is often a finite space to be filled, web content allows you to be much more flexible.

If this is the craft of the journalist and then editor, the final work is as a designer. There must be a keen visual element, no matter the amount of content. Make sure it is presented in short, sharp paragraphs, perhaps using bullet points, and uses images that add to the story. If you accomplish this, the initial impression a searcher finds on arrival is of a site with plenty to say, but one that is easy to read and comprehend.

Remember it’s about the bottom line

Creating compelling content can be a joy, or sometimes a chore (and reading copy on a website, you can often quickly work out which it was). However, it can only ever be successful by its impact on the bottom line of any business. Content marketing needs to be a fluid resource of your business. It’s important, therefore, to use analytic processes to gauge its effectiveness in creating traffic and heightening engagement.

Thus you should amend it as necessary and change it as you need to. This might be for seasonal events or promotions, for new products or services, and through the answering of customer queries. This also applies for the different platforms you might use, including your own website, blog, social media and the like. The same principles also apply to any content marketing in print.

Through all of this, remember that its key task is always to effectively market your organisation and its products and services to those potential – and returning – customers who are currently in the market for what you have to offer. This is how it should always be judged.

Related Tags: Digital Marketing Newcastle | Web Developer Newcastle

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How To Create Content That Informs & Entertains Your Audience

It's a common question that people ask when they are thinking about developing a content marketing plan or entering into the world of running a blog. How do I create the right type of content and how do I make it as entertaining and informative as possible? The best way to think about what type of content you are going to create is to put yourself in your customers shoes. Developing content that really connects with your audience isn't easy. It will take trial and error before you find that so called "Sweet Spot". By becoming one of your customers from the outset you can potentially avoid redoing your content over and over again. So how do you become your customer and what's the purpose? The idea of putting yourself into your clients shoes is to get an understanding of why they are or could be a customer, what there problems or pain points are and how you can solve those problems better than your competitors.

Gather data and information

There are some simple ways you can start to understand your customers better so you can create content that connects with their problems and at the same time provides entertainment and engagement.

  1. Run a survey asking key questions about problems facing your customers and how they relate to your services. Incorporate this survey as a direct email to clients after they purchase a product or service.
  2. Talk to your existing customers - why have they stayed with you? What problems have you solved for them? What do you do better than your competitors?
  3. Email your customers your content and track what they open and engage with the most. This can help you identify content areas that are most relevant to your customer base

Where do you go from here?

The easiest way to start thinking about the type of content you are going to create is by understanding the services/products you provide and what your expert knowledge or point of difference is. How do you communicate that through your content? How do you develop content that is unique? As a business owner or manager you are in the best position to understand how you can communicate what you do in a unique way. How about an example:

Motorcycle Dealer

Let's say Jeff runs a successful motorcycle dealership. He has over 50 years experience in the motorcycle industry and specialises in selling a particular brand and knows everything there is to know about that particular brand. Instantly Jeff has a content path that he can take. Focusing on a specific niche is easier than going after broad topics that may not connect as well to your potential audience or not be as unique. Jeff can easily create the following content:

  • Detailed product reviews on his blog
  • Maintenance and support tips
  • Podcasts on newly released models and features
  • YouTube videos with road tests & other detailed information

This is a simple example of identifying a particular part of your business that you have passion or knowledge for and turning it into content that will educate and entertain an audience.

Channels & creating the right content

The first step is always creating a plan. Don't just launch into creating content as you will find that it may not resonate with your audience and you may find that the trial and error component of creating content that works takes longer. Do the right research, toss around ideas about what your niche or specialisation is and how you can communicate that in a unique way to your audience. Once you've done that you're halfway there to creating great content that will help your inbound marketing, SEO and lead generation.

The next step you need to focus on is finding the right channels to market and promote your content. A blog is great, however it isn't the only channel you can use and ultimately the type of content you create will dictate what channels you use. For example if you are creating product reviews or how to information you may find that YouTube is another great avenue to reach your audience.

Important to remember

There are some simple ways you can make things easier for yourself:

  • Put the same content on different channels, created differently - What this means is that each channel needs to have unique content on it, however you could use the same blog post to then create a spin-off YouTube video, podcast or webinar.
  • Always create calls to action with your content. If you create content and distribute it on someone else's platform (YouTube) always create a call to action to get people to subscribe on your website and use email marketing to send out alerts for your content. Always create a backup to reach people who are interested in your content
  • Have fun and create content that is a reflection of your personal style, brand and interests. Your content should be a representation of your business and it's unique style.

Why should you create content?

There are multiple reasons you should invest in a content plan and start using some resources to create content. They include:

  • It creates sticky clients. If you're a business that works off referrals or word of mouth, having your content in front of your audience all the time can generate social shares, referrals and opportunities you may not have had a chance to access otherwise
  • It's good for your search engine optimisation if you are trying to rank for longtail keywords and relevant searches related to your industry
  • You can generate sales, leads & more customers by creating content. Focus on educating & entertaining your audience, rather than selling to them what you do. The sales opportunities will come if you create the right type of content

Related Tags: Email Marketing Newcastle | SEO Services Newcastle