Monday, 16 October 2017

Creating Engaging Content for B2B Businesses

Best Practices for Amazing Content Marketing for your B2B Clients

While content marketing is considered to be crucial by many B2B companies in India, the companies are still struggling to get it correct. The major factors that companies resort to content marketing is:

             - Create awareness
             - Generate quality leads, and
             - Position them as an industry leader

While it is somewhat easy to create awareness, and gradually generate quality leads, what the companies are struggling with is generating industry thought leadership. With so many companies competing with one another to get better SERPs for niche keywords, there is no depth of content and information.

The crux lies if providing content that stands out and that your readers look forward to.

Here is a brief sneak peek into how to write and provide engaging content to your customers:

Have a content strategy - to write and promote your content

Yes, marketers keep on saying have a content strategy but what we tend to overlook is that a strategy is needed for both creating a content as well as promoting the content.

A practice that we have adopted at CreativeClick! is that involving both content team and SEO team in terms of planning the content marketing strategy for a particular month. The team then works in sync both focussing on the outcome that needs to be generated by the end of each month for that client.

Include graphics or Infographics to your content to make it visually appealing

Just a plain boring blog is very dull for a reader. A reader might click and land to your blog post, but looking at the sheer words and content, he might lose interest to read the blog in full.

So, what can you do to ensure that the so called potential lead, reads about what you intend to convey?

Answer is simple; make it visually appealing by making using good graphics that gives a gist of what you intend to communicate to the reader.

Connect with your customers

Identify 5-10 target customers, these can be your current customers, and take a feedback from them regarding your content strategy. Ask them what it that they look forward to hearing from you is.
Remember, you are creating content for them, not for your own consumption. Though this is a very basic point, many companies still fail to create content for their customers and create content on assumptions on what they think the target customers would like to hear from them.

Interact with your customers with teaser campaigns

If you follow a proper content marketing calendar, creating a teaser campaign around the content on social media becomes very easy. This is one of the most engaging ways of connecting with your target audience, and gets an insight on what is their approach, expectation, or view about that particular content topic. Further when you publish this content, you can re-connect with them and take the conversation forward.

Add Case studies in form of success stories

Always talk about what solutions you gave to a client as a success story rather than a case-study. Define a proper format in which you would like to share your success stories, highlight the challenges and the solutions you gave. If possible, make it visually appealing by using vectors, flow charts, etc.

Add videos to your content

Currently videos have a better reach as compared to other forms of content. Video already makes up 64 percent of all internet traffic, according to Cisco’s 2014 Visual Networking Index, and its forecast to grow to 80 percent of all traffic by 2019.

While we do recommend at least one corporate video on the website, it is always an added advantage to have a video testimonial of your client, as it makes your content marketing more engaging and lively.

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Key to Making Your Social Media Content Engaging!

No doubt, social media has become an ideal platform for marketing, with brands restoring to various campaigns and initiates to connect with their audiences. It is a medium through which many brands are expressing their personality, creating awareness and are enjoying a great level of brand loyalty. But the trick here is doing it right.

The post in the form of blog, image, video etc. provides a possibility for people to react and engage with the brand which later results in conversions and brand experience. All this happens when the content is witty, consistent and well-thought of, so that it drives the audience to be hooked to your brand page for more.

Following are the tactics to create interesting social media post!

Have a strategy

Execution is just confusion without a plan! For an effective social media presence first step is to have a strategy which will act as your checklist to accomplish social media operations.

Here are some crucial points to create an engaging social strategy:


Step into your customer’s world!
  • Define your objective: Brand awareness or Brand loyalty, what’s your goal?
  • Define Target Audience: Based on demographic and psycho-graphic research.
  • Zero-down the Social Media platforms: Which platform is appropriate for your audience and brand?
  • Create a Social network strategy: Based on a research on what your target audience like consuming and what more can you offer via your content.

Have a theme

A theme is an abstract statement that enables your audience to understand the deeper meaning and the intention behind putting the content out for them. The crux here is to identify the purpose behind creating the content which will help you shape it. You have to use your theme to beam your idea into the mind of your audiences by understanding what will strike cord with them.

Define a central theme for your brand strategy and revolve your content around this theme. Moreover, time and again you can create sub-themes to make your content more interesting.

Keep your content writing crisp and clear

We live in an age where attention span is very low. A crisp and clear content, which is a well-structured, plays a vital role in providing a good user experience to the audience. A concisely written piece grabs reader’s attention and arouses their curiosity to know more. It doesn’t just pass the required information but is fairly understandable to the readers and is quick to consume.

Graphics speaks louder than words

Gone are the days of “titles invite readers”. Now a day’s graphic designing makes a bigger difference in an over-crowded social media feed. Out of the box graphics is a quick way to express the message, convey emotion, showcase product and offers. Keep them creative, informative yet simple.

Be a proactive content creator

Being proactive in nature will keep you updated, informed and ready to create engaging content. Be it any headlines or an article online, you should be in the research mode. Enthusiastic content creators are always scouring for a universe of information for premium content. You can use the information as an inspiration for your content further; it also plays an impactful role in keeping the content innovative.

Thursday, 20 April 2017

SEO Basics – 3 Basic Best Practices for SEO that we Usually Tend to Ignore

Search engines want to show relevant and useful information to their users. They show the websites or content in the search results that is most relevant to what the user is looking for. There are few important and basic aesthetics that one needs to consider in the SEO strategy.

How is relevancy of search results determined? The Relevance is determined by both the keywords and website’s popularity factors.

•    On page - Content, HTML, Architecture
•    Off page – Trust, Authority, Links, Social

SEO is very simple, but most of us complicate it by doing it wrong. Here are some basic things that we usually tend to ignore.

Title Tag and Meta Description

 

Title tags are words or phrases that define the title your webpage’s content and appears on search engine results page. Where lot of websites go wrong when it comes to SEO is that they overlook Title Tags on their pages, or use very generic tags which don’t actually describe what the webpage is all about.

Ideally your title tag should be under 60 characters, as google typically displays 50-60 characters on the search results, and should include your targeted keywords and keyword phrases just once. Also, do not forget to include your brand name in the tile tag, your location (if your brand is location dependent).

Meta Description is the content that displays below the title tag on the search engine result pages. Though Meta description does not play a very crucial role in ranking of the webpage, it is very important to get a user to click on your website.

Below are the few suggestions to consider –
-    Limit your meta description to 150-160 characters
-    Use your targeted keywords or keyword phrases at least twice
-    Do not just put keywords, rather create good copy of content which is descriptive and informational to attract the user to click on your page

H1 heading


First of all, do not confuse between the Title Tag and H1 tag. Unlike Title tags, H1 headings do not appear on the search results page. H1 heading is in large font, acting as a heading to your webpage and is visible only on the webpage.





-    Title Tag: Assures relevancy to the searches and ensures that they find a relevant webpage for their query or needs
-    H1 Tag: Describes what the webpage content is all about and reassures them that it will suffice their query or need

If the H1 Tags are well written they assure the user to stay on the page, thus increasing your session Duration and reducing your Bounce Rate decreases. These two are most important user experience metrics that impact search engine rankings.

We have usually find webpages using either no H1 headings or using more than one. Best practice is to use only one H1 tag, use your keyword only once in it, and use it early, and keep it short, under 55 characters.

Image Optimization


A picture is worth a thousand words. Using relevant images and infographics on your webpage is usually a good practice. Do ensure that your image is clear and its size is not too large as it impacts the loading speed of the website. It not looking makes your webpage appealing and lively to the reader, but also supports in SEO.

Alt Tag/Text

The alt text describes what the image is all about and the purpose of the image on the page. 
From SEO purpose you should feed relevant keywords here. By feed I mean not filling alt text with keywords ("keyword stuffing") but rather focus on creating useful information and good content that uses your keywords aptly and in relevant context.

Image Name

Give your images detailed, informative filenames rather than some random name as it can give the search engine clues about the subject of the image. Keep your image name relevant, descriptive yet specific.

Now that you know these basic things it might be a correct time to do an analysis of these basic SEO aesthetics on your website. Alternatively, feel free to connect with us for a free website analysis by signing up here.

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

What is Your Social Listening?

Do you think social media platforms are all about sharing and connecting with people? Then think again. There is a gamut of people sitting out there are viewing your social media activities and posts, knowingly or unknowing making some evaluation about you. We are living in a world where our personal profiles are no longer off limits. You may not realize it, but your every social media profile is promoting you.

So what is it that your profile is saying about you? Are you positioning the brand you correctly?

What is personal branding and why is it important?
“Your personal brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room - remember that.”                                                                                – Chris Ducker

Personal branding is a way of people marketing themselves and their careers as brands.It is a process of managing and optimizing the way that you are presented to others. While traditionally it included things like your visiting card, now with the establishment of internet and social media, personal branding has grown to an enormously different level. 

Just do a google search about your name and your city in incognito. What shows up is a complete list of your social profiles – esp. Facebook and LinkedIn, your published blogs or articles, if you have published any, or probably some websites or community that you are a part of.  Whether you like it or not, intentionally or unintentionally we all have a personal branding about ourselves. Then why no leverage it in a way that it supports you and your business grows.

How can you build it?

Find your USP
First of all define “Why are you positioning yourself” and “What do I want to be known for”- it can be your career, passion or a hobby, etc. Basically have an objective and specific a desired outcome for positioning yourself as a brand. Later, answer the following questions-

•    What are my expertise pertaining to that felid?
•    What is my niche, how do I stand out than the rest?
•    What do people like about me or compliment me for?

Jot down at least 1 and maximum 3 arears you want to position yourself for. Brainstorm using the reference questions above and find your niche. Now that is going to be your personal positioning.

Start promoting yourself, but do not sell...

Update you social profiles. Add a bio on Facebook and Twitter; update your LinkedIn profile pertaining to your USP.

If you are already maintaining a personal blog or a website, probably it is a time to re-look and re-work on your bio and the kind of content you have been publishing. Why not blog about this new self-discovery and declare what you would like be known for?

If you aren’t blogging still, it is not a problem. Evaluate if you have the time and dedication to create and manage one, and simply create it. It can be in your own name (preferably) or something related to your positioning and USP.

Keep sharing relevant updates and your views pertaining to your arear of interest on your social profile. Here keep in mind the 3 C’s.

The two C’s - Content and Consistency

Branding demands commitment; commitment to continual re-invention; striking chords with people to stir their emotions; and commitment to imagination. It is easy to be cynical about such things, much harder to be successful.
                                                                                        – Sir Richard Branson

The first C – CONTENT
This includes the kind of updates you publish and share on your social media profiles. Are they really in sync with the positioning you wish to create for yourself?

Ask yourself

-    Whatwill people evaluate about me after seeing my profile basics – the profile picture, the cover picture, the privacy settings, the bio, etc.
-    What are my profile posts (news feed, tweets, posts on LinkedIn, posts on Instagram, etc.) talking about me?

Probably, you can also consult a few people and take their feedback about your social listening.

Now, once you have evaluated you profile, re-work on it based on your positioning. Start sharing relevant updates which talks about your interest or skills to the people. Let them know you and your expertise. Do this gradually so that they create your brand recall, and do not over-do or sell. Remember that your profile is not a sales agent; it is just a platform to create awareness and direct people to your business or service or passion.

The second C – CONSISTENCY
Keep the same name, profile, pic, imagery, and look across your social profiles. Keeping a consistent profile will help others find you easily, and it also creates a picture of you in the minds of others.
Also, be consistent with your updates and engagement. If you are into blogging, publish one post at least in a week or fortnightly. Share relevant post and updates on your profile every day. Keep talking about your expertise and interest, keep engaging and responding to people. This indeed requires you to strategize your content in advance. 

The third C – Connect
Join relevant social media communities, groups or chats. Keep sharing and engaging in these communities and groups pro-actively. Support people, discuss, and connect.
Reach-out to people well-known in the industry or the field, find mentors, ask for connections, meet them offline, arrange for meet-ups or discussions offline, and thus start building your self-image and network.

Remember your network is your net worth!

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Creating the Right Connect Through Content Marketing

With the growth of social as well as digital media, content has become the key to connect with your customers. Given the enormous amount of content being generated every day, it is important to have an engaging, interactive and innovative content marketing strategy to stand out of the clutter and grab the attention of your target customers. Unfortunately, very few brands at present are able to develop that cutting edge strategy to engage and interact with the customers.

Another problem could be that you may be producing very good content, but there are chances that it is not generating that expected ROI or engagement. 

So what is the key to generate that desired connect through content marketing? 

Just follow this simple and ongoing process of research, define, design and analyze. 

Research
Define your Target Audience and do a thorough research on what interests them online

A brand would always design their product or service based on the likes and dislikes of their target audience. Thus, the set target group is already defined.

All you need to do is a thorough social media listening and research on your target group. This helps in two ways –
  • First it helps you decide the social media platform you need to explore based on where your target audience is not only active but approachable
  • Secondly it helps in knowing what kind of content your target group  prefers and engages with

Many marketers fail to consider the needs and expectations of their target audience and create content assuming that it will be liked by their audience. If you put up any content, without understanding the likes and dislikes or preferences of your target audience, you are deemed to make the biggest content marketing blunder.
 
Competitor analysis
Club competitor analysis as well in your research on target audience in order to understand what strategy your competitors are adopting and how is the target group reacting to it.

Thus, while designing the content strategy, you can think of different and innovative ways to engage with your customers.

Define - The central theme of the content strategy
Rather than random content, define a central theme. You can define this theme based on the essence or positioning of the brand.
For example, for one of our clients in intimate hygiene wash category, we had to generate category awareness among women and hence we defined our central messaging as “for the confident woman of today”. It was then easy to identify the various content we would generate under this theme and also the overall design approach for the community.

·      Design a long term, sustainable content Marketing Strategy

Content marketing, just like any other form of marketing, should have a strategy that clearly defines its objectives, expectations and expected results. Without appropriate and sustainable strategy, you may end up doing so many things but without attaining the desired outcome.

Once you define your central idea or theme properly based on your target group, the important step is to design a long term and sustainable content strategy. Define the content buckets, the amount of content to be generated daily, weekly and monthly. At this point it is also very important to ask yourself, how do you set yourself apart from others in the same space? How do you make a difference for your community?

Also note that do not resort to too much hard selling on social media. Create an online offline strategy such that your social media contests, offers, etc. creates offline footfalls.

Analyse your content strategy regularly and be open to changing it if required

Every social media content update has some or the other lesson to take away from it. Hence, it is crucial to gauge how your target audience is responding to your content. Is the strategy gaining the desired outcome and ROI. If not, figure out which content bucket is working well and which needs improvement.

Consumer is the king, and thus consumer insights cannot be neglected. Developing content marketing connect is not a onetime activity but an ongoing process and needs constant analysis, research, innovation and improvements to keep it sustainable. Be a front runner and pro-active enough to experiment.