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Blogging for Business Part I – How to Develop a Content Strategy

I’ve been blogging for 10 years, and I will tell you that it’s no small thing to build a brand online using content. To develop a blog, you need to define the purpose for your blog, a specific target audience, an engaging content strategy, and build up a significant following in social media, if you want to monetize your blog. Your website is the first step in the critical task of building an online presence for your business. But it is consistent content that will bring people back to your website day after day to engage with your brand. Today kicks off Part I of a three-part series on Blogging for Business. Effective online marketing is about engaging customers where they are online, in the right way at the right time, and most importantly, with content that solves a problem and demonstrates your expertise. Today’s focus is developing a content strategy. For small businesses, the Internet is the great equalizer. As long as you are positioned as a problem solver or an expert, many customers will focus on how fast you can provide them a solution and not how big you are. Because of the amount of data we can now access about our target markets, things like brand messaging, content, products and pricing can be customized. No matter the age, gender, education, or income level of your target customer, they are online, and often using a mobile device to search for content. Social Media Marketing Social media sites give you a chance to join conversation online about your industry or subject area. You meet customers online by adding value to the conversation with your content. Social media facilitates richer, more meaningful customer connections. When done well, your consumers will find you and become ambassadors of your products and services. The face of social media marketing is changing constantly. Current top social media sites include Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram, but there are many other options in the social media landscape. You can also hire a tech-savvy virtual assistant or a social media strategist to teach you how to…

Using Reddit In Your Content Strategy

What is Reddit? Reddit is a social news and content rating site which receives an incredible 542 million monthly views and is the 6th most visited website in the world (according to alexa.com). One of the Silicon Valley Unicorns, Reddit has a valuation of $1.8 billion and boasts an array of notable investors including Marc Andreessen (founder of Netscape), Peter Thiel (first investor of Facebook) and oh, of course, Snoop Dogg! Founded by college roommates Steve Huffman (CEO) and Alexis Ohanian, Reddit has been proclaimed as the internets “front page” and boast 70+ million content submissions from science, to video games, to fitness, to books, well … to just about anything you can think of! How Reddit Works? Reddit is a very simple concept where it’s users (Redditors) submit content, which could be anything from an image to a blog post and the community of Reddit vote it up or down. The more upvotes, the higher the content appears. Posts that get a lot of upvotes move to the “Hot” page. Reddit is further broken down into “subreddits” which are subsidiary categories and threads within the site. Ways in which Reddit can be used in your content marketing strategy? Firstly, why use Reddit in your content marketing strategy? So 500+ million monthly views to a content platform is kind of a big deal – so as a content marketer Reddit needs to be taken seriously given it is the most influential social news aggregator on the planet. It’s not Google or Facebook – As Google and Facebook continue to grow their advertising revenues, as a marketer, competition goes up and so does cost. As businesses look to control acquisition costs, diversification of platforms can play a big part. How to use Reddit in your content marketing strategy? Content marketers typically will use Reddit for one of two purposes. One is to direct traffic to your own site, and the other is to get eyeballs on your content within the hosted Reddit site. Baring this in mind there are two types of posts on Reddit, links that direct users to another…

How to Develop Content if You Hate Writing

Creating original content is the best way to demonstrate your expertise and build your brand online, but you need to find a content area that works for you.  We tend to think of content in terms of blogs or written words. Writing how-to articles, check lists and informative blog posts are certainly an avenue to pursue, but it’s really hard work to do it consistently, so you need to make sure you love it. I wanted to be a writer since 8th grade, so writing is truly my thing. But if you detest writing there are other things you can do to build your business’s social footprint. Content marketing has exploded, with 89% of B2B marketers currently using content marketing. The recent shift to being a mobile first world has created audiences that are consuming content in new and savvy ways. People want to learn from you and become your customer. Here are a few suggestions for developing content if you hate writing. Alternative ideas for Content Marketing While written articles aren’t going anywhere, people are looking for more engaging content. Options for content beyond traditional blog posts include video, Images, infographics and podcasts. Yes, images are amazing content. We’ve all heard the saying that a picture is worth a thousand words. If what you sell has visual appeal there are social platforms just for you. We’ve seen a flood of visual social media sites and tools in the last few years. Each has its own benefits, and can help you connect in meaningful ways with your audience. Here are ways to leverage other kinds of content Facebook LIVE Facebook LIVE is one of the best ways to leverage live video marketing. It gives you a way to create an authentic connection with your target audience and build a following. It provides live streaming through its mobile app of you doing anything: talking to fans, building your product, conducting interviews. I recently wrote an article about the 17 ways you can leverage a Facebook Live video event Instagram Instagram’s got over 800 million users, with 500 million daily users, so they’re…

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