Archiv für den Monat: Mai 2017

6 ways to build a more productive remote content marketing team

Colorful flat illustration of modern office computer desk and some office decor in front of window.

The landscape of the modern workplace has changed a lot in the past ten years. Once upon a time you had to find shady crafting companies or secret shopping positions if you wanted to work flexibly and from home.

Now we’ve seen a powerful trend emerging. In 2015 the number of US workers who had moved to remote (or telecommuting) jobs had climbed to an unprecedented 37%. That is a number that continues to grow as more startups and even large scale companies open their workforce up to those who act as office vagabonds, putting in hours from home, coffee shops, and even while traveling.

Content marketing is being impacted by this trend most. You no longer need to find and move talent to your office: You can work effectively with content writers from all over the world.

1. Use a good task management platform

There are so many task managing apps out there that it would be hard to find a single one that works best. You will want platforms that deal with business management (so your team can stay on board at all times), and communication (so you can always keep in touch, no matter where you all are.

Flow, Trello, and Asana are three solid examples you may want to look into.

From personal experience, managing a productivity tool still takes plenty of time. So unless you have a reliable project manager in-house, it makes sense to rely on a project management company.

It may actually save you money and minimize your headache with dealing with multiple to-do lists and processes. Distributed is a good example of a company that actually specializes in managing distributed teams all over the world. Hiring a virtual assistant is another option.

2. Use a reliable editorial calendar tool

I am a big proponent of using a year-long editorial calendar that lets you and your content marketing team get properly prepared for big holidays, seasonal trends and even fun days that can be turned into solid promotional material.

By preparing your content in advance, you’ll be always ahead of the game. It’s exceedingly important if you deal with an international teams when not everyone is aware of your local trends and holidays.

My all-time favorite editorial calendar management platform has been Coschedule that’s also perfectly set-up for distributed teams: You add your team members and watch everyone do their own thing:

If you are looking for a higher-level solution, take a look at NewsCred. It gives you a nice color-coded dashboard of your content marketing plans:


3. Invest into solid writing tools

Your writing team is as effective as the tools you provide them with. You want them to brainstorm, research and write productively. Different workflows may require different writing tools. I always encourage writers to use the following tools:

1. Google Docs to create content. It’s easy for editing and it’s real time, so teams can work on content assets while discussing it on Skype or in a Slack group.

2. HARO and MyBlogU to collect useful quotes from niche experts and influencers.

3. Plagiarism Check to quickly check for any instances of copied content. This is especially important if you have new writers. Believe it or not, but many writers would just copy some parts of content (these could be too long quotes) without realizing it’s not an advisable digital content marketing tactic.


4. Use an effective social media sharing solution

It’s very important to engage your content writing team into the marketing routine. It’s obvious that they will be much more excited at seeing their articles succeed (after doing their brainstorming, research and writing tasks) than the social media team who may see the completed content assets for the first time.

Thus it’s essential to have a unified multi-user cross-channel social media sharing and scheduling solution that would enable cross team marketing incentives.

I use DrumUp to scale my social media marketing tasks. It has all the features I need:

  • Easy one-click scheduling (for my articles to go to my social media channels repeatedly for more exposure)
  • Multi-user support (for team members to see what they need to be shared)
  • Leaderboard feature to encourage friendly competition among the team members
  • Content library feature to store my promotions, ever-green content and seasons greetings in categories for convenient reuse


5. Use a marketing dashboard to monitor stats

Cyfe is a great customizable all in one business management software that allows you to create your own widgets to handle any aspect of your business, all for $19 per month. For higher-level content marketing stats monitoring I use the following boards:

  • Growth of traffic referrals (Google Analytics)
  • Recent traffic referrals (Google Analytics)
  • Social media traffic analytics (Google Analytics)
  • Twitter, Facebook, Youtube and Pinterest account growth


6. Use productive communication tools that spur creativity

Properly set-up communication between your remote employees helps creativity, experience exchange and marketing collaboration. It also helps your brand consistency because your team can properly discuss every content asset before they start working on it.

Slack is an awesome communication tool that lets you create channels and speak to different groups, or on different topics. Think of it as a more professional version of Discord.

There’s one reason I prefer Slack over emailing: It gives a centralized platform for your team communication but unlike a project management solution, Slack fosters a more relaxed environment which is so important for creative teams. Slack helps creativity and gives writers a place to brainstorm freely without being accused of cluttering the board.

Create your super team!

Don’t let your workforce get limited by borders. These days we have tools in place that empower you to build the content marketing team of your dream without investing time and money into moving everyone into a single office. How are you managing your remote content marketing employees?


10 Infographics to Guide Your Content Marketing Strategy

Your brain can identify and retain details of an image in 13 milliseconds. That’s less than a 20th of the time it takes to blink your eyes. So it’s no surprise that visual content is on the rise as attention spans shrink. If you could choose between a consumer spending 20 seconds with a wall of text or 20 seconds with an image, it makes sense to go with the latter.

In other words, people like looking at stuff. As such, infographics are rapidly becoming an essential component of a solid content marketing strategy. Free tools like Canva and Pixlr make it easier than ever to turn your data into compelling visual content.

The best infographics give equal weight to both parts of the word – they combine essential info with stellar graphic design. I could write a whole blog post about how great infographics can be. But, of course, that would defeat the purpose.

Instead, let’s look at ten great infographics with a meta twist: They’re content marketing assets about content marketing! These examples can inspire your own infographic creation while they inform your strategy.

#1: How to Socialize a Blog Post

Creating great content is less than half the battle for marketers. You should spend roughly 20% of your effort creating, and 80% in promotion. What good is awesome content if no one sees it? This colorful gem from DigitalMarketer efficiently illustrates how to make sure your content reaches your target audience. You’ll learn how to create assets that help promote the piece, make your shares trackable, and analyze your results to do it even better next time.

#2: The Top 8 B2B Customer Marketing Trends to Watch Out for in 2017

This piece from Digital Marketing Philippines (via the good folks at HubSpot) really puts the “info” in “infographic.” It’s a good example of just how much data you can pack into a visual asset while still keeping it easily-digestible. The bright colors, solid organization, and statistic call-outs grab attention, while the text provides plenty of value to keep people reading.

#3: What Does It Take to Make a Piece of Content?

Dive into this cool blue infographic for an insider look at how content powerhouse Contently goes from strategy to creation to distribution. This piece is a great counter-example to the design-heavy look of the previous entry on the list. It relies on simple line art to create a cooking metaphor that provides visual interest without overpowering the text. A soupcon of highlighted statistics help make the case for the solid advice they’re presenting.

#4: The Ultimate Content Marketing Strategy

There are plenty of resources out there that explain the “Big Rock” content marketing strategy, but this Curata infographic gets points for thoroughness and nifty graphical interest. Learn how to create a gated asset, slice it into top-of-funnel ungated content that feeds back to the gated asset, then dice it into even smaller gems to share on social media. One nifty trick to steal for your next long infographic: The progress bar at the top that shows exactly how far you’ve read and how far you have left to go.

#5: A Brief History of Content Marketing

Who better to give a primer on the 200+ year history of content marketing than the Godfather himself, Joe Pulizzi of the Content Marketing Institute? This timeline serves as a reminder that quality content can help build a business, from John Deere’s The Furrow to the Michelin Guide to the Will It Blend? Videos. Wrapped in Joe’s signature orange, this bite-sized history lesson is well worth a read.

#6: 10 Visual Marketing Statistics for 2017

This infographic collects results from a Venngage survey of over 300 digital marketers. It’s a great resource for seeing how the industry is moving toward visual content, and what types of visual content are leading the pack. Compare your progress to the results here, or use it to inspire your strategy, or just enjoy the pink-and-purple visuals.

#7: The Ins & Outs of Awesome Infographics

Fans of marketing, infographics, and pentagons will enjoy this groovy piece from IBM. The simple, clean design work complements the solid advice on offer about how to create memorable visual content. Learn how to choose the right visuals for your data, pick the right layout, and avoid common mistakes.

#8: What Buyers Really Want from Content Marketers

The team at Uberflip demonstrates a lesson well worth learning in this piece: Not every infographic has to be six screens tall. They manage to pack a wealth of data into a fairly small space, distilling the message into something that gets the value across without spraining your scrolling finger. Find out what buyers want marketers to do, and not do, to create content that really resonates.

#9: The Importance of Visual Content

You don’t have to have a team of researchers and designers to create a solid infographic. This piece from kwikturn media is a good example of doing more with less. It’s essentially a stats blog post, compiled from sources around the internet. Add some thoughtful but simple clip art, a slate background, and it’s far more interesting than a text list would be.

#10: The Secret to Creating Scalable, Quality Content and Better CX

Static infographics have more visual interest than text does. But you can take it a step further with an animated, interactive infographic. Some people call these “gifographics.” Those people are wrong. But whatever you call them, they’re undeniably cool. We created this interactive piece on the Ceros platform.

Infographics are an indispensable part of a modern content marketing strategy. Use them to highlight data points from your gated content, replace a list-based blog post, or just to brighten up a how-to post. Just keep the design simple and clean, and the text informative and valuable.

Seen any cool infographics lately? Let me know in the comments.

And if you need help creating your own infographics, check out our content marketing services.

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Three strategies for cracking the B2B code on Facebook

When most people think Facebook advertising, they think B2C marketing.

Many tend to assume that B2B marketing on Facebook doesn’t make sense or would not be effective – because it would be too hard to get in front of professionals, decision makers, and the right industry positions, and even if you do, they’re not in the mood to think about business if they’re browsing Facebook.

These assumptions, however, are quite inaccurate – and with the right strategies and targeting in place, Facebook can indeed be an effective B2B platform. Below are three key strategies for how to make your B2B marketing successful on Facebook.

Build a layered Lookalike strategy

Lookalike audiences are one of Facebook’s most efficient targeting capabilities. First off, here’s a quick refresher: Lookalike targeting is where you can leverage your first-party data (e.g. customer lists, audience lists, etc.) as a seed audience and Facebook will take that list and target users who are very similar in characteristics, behaviors, and traits as that audience.

The capability is super-powerful, but rather than taking your entire customer list and using it as a seed list, you need to be smart about how to segment and leverage your first-party data.

1. Think about your customer list and how to segment it

To create an effective seed list, think about your customer list and whether you can segment that list into groups of identifiable characteristics. For example, let’s say you are a B2B cybersecurity company that sells cybersecurity to a variety of companies in different industries.

You may want to segment out your customer lists by the industries they are in – tech, medical, education, financial, etc. Keep in mind you’ll need a seed list of between 2K-5K users to be effective.

2. Upload the seed list you’ve developed to Facebook

Next, upload that seed list into Facebook and develop your lookalikes off of it. In most cases, I’d recommend that you build an audience of the 1% most relevant users, which tends to be the audience closest in similarities, characteristics, and traits.

However, for this strategy, you should keep your audience size fairly large in order to layer additional targeting to refine the list. I recommend a LAL 5% (LALs go from 1% to 10%), as a 5% will still find users similar to your seed list – but rather than receiving an audience size of 2M, you are going after a larger pool of 10M.

I know, you must be thinking that 10M sounds way too big!! Don’t worry – refinement is coming!

3. Start building your ad set

As you start building your ad set, you’ll be using your LAL 5% audience as your base audience to target. In other words, rather than targeting all of Facebook’s uses, you’re starting off with a more qualified audience given they are similar to your customers.

You’ll layer Facebook’s targeting options on top of this audience by selecting job/title targeting to find the decision makers in a company likely to be interested in your product.

You have now just leveraged Facebook’s various targeting capabilities to ensure that you are going after audiences similar to your customers and targeting true decision-makers.

Take advantage of third-party data

Remember that third-party data providers are your friend! You should consider partnering with third-party data providers such as Axciom and Datalogix in order to leverage their relevant lists.

Similar to what you can find within Facebook, you can also leverage their third-party lists and get in front of specific industry professionals and decision makers. This is a quick and easy way to identify relevant audiences and target them.

Engage users with video

Think about your business. Do your customers need to be educated? Are they conducting lots of research before they purchase? This is often the case with B2B companies who need to build a strong, long-term case to justify high price points.

An efficient tactic to avoid excessive clicks, yet get the job done on educating your audiences, is to leverage video ads. You’ll want to keep in mind that 30 seconds or less is the recommended time given people’s short attention spans – but that’s more than enough time to inform the users and get them into your funnel.

And Facebook automatically builds audience lists based on how long users have viewed your video (e.g. 50%, 75%, 100%), so you can segment by level of interest.

Next, you can create an ad set and remarket with static and carousel ads towards specific audiences who have viewed 100% of the video. Introduce more value props to the folks who showed serious interest; pull the users onto your site, push them down the funnel, and ultimately convert.

Are these strategies guaranteed to make Facebook a successful platform for your B2B company? Of course not. But we strongly recommend testing these three strategies to see what kind of traction you can get; otherwise, you’re letting your competitors grab all the eyeballs on one of the most biggest, most engaging platforms in digital marketing.


Report: Social Media Examiner 2017 State of Social Media Marketing

The past 12 months have been big for social media marketers. Each social platform has seen significant changes or upgrades creating opportunity, and adding complexity for many marketers.

Facebook introduced live video, Twitter made it easier to fit your message in 140 characters, Snapchat added collaboration features and Pinterest added promoted video.

The question on many marketers minds is: what has truly changed in the way that B2B and B2C marketers approach social media marketing? The new Social Media Marketing Industry Report from Social Media Examiner takes a deep dive into the current state of social media on a granular level.

But how does social media marketing effort and success differ between B2B and B2C brands? Find out below.

Both B2B & B2C Marketers Struggle with Social Media Measurement

According to the study, only 38% of marketers believe that they are able to measure their social activities. This is a decline from 2016 and 2015. Additionally, only 34% of marketers believe that their Facebook marketing is effective.

Varying Benefits of Social Media Marketing

What’s working? Well for most B2B and B2C brands, increased exposure and increased traffic rank high on the list. However, when it comes to developing loyal fans, that’s where the numbers start to differ.

72% of B2C marketers versus 64% of B2B marketers were able to develop a loyal fan base through social media marketing.

However, 64% of B2B marketers versus 54% of B2C marketers were able to gain thought leadership through social media marketing.

Top Used Social Media Marketing Platforms

It’s no surprise that the largest social networking platform in the world is the top used platform for both B2B and B2C marketers. Since 2016, Facebook usage increased 1% while Twitter usage declined 8%.

Overall, B2B marketers are investing more in platforms such as Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest while B2B marketers focus on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.

In past years, LinkedIn was the top contender for B2B brands but has since taken second place to LinkedIn (43% versus 37%)

Facebook Rules Paid Social Media

When it comes to paid social, Facebook is the clear frontrunner. The majority (93%) of marketers use Facebook ads, up 6% from 2016.

B2C marketers are using Facebook ads slightly more than their B2B counterparts (95% to 87%) but it’s close! However, the gap begins to widen when you begin assessing paid social ad usage on LinkedIn. While 29% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn ads, only 10% of B2C marketers invest on the platform.

Are Marketers Really Using Snapchat?

It’s no secret that Snapchat usage has soared over the past year. With over 161 million daily users, it’s clear that consumers (especially millennials) have taken to the platform.

In the next year, 23% of marketers plan on increasing their Snapchat activities to meet that demand. However, only 8% of marketers have actually increased their posting frequency in the past 12 months.

Common Content Types

The type of content that social media marketers post has seen a significant change in the past year. While visual images and blogging reign supreme, live video has made a jump from 28% from 14% in just one year.

The study also found that B2B marketers are more likely to use blogging than B2C marketers (75% versus 61%) and B2C marketers are more likely to use video (30% versus 24%).

What Does the Future Hold for B2B & B2C Marketers?

In some ways, B2B and B2C marketers are on-pace. In others, their approaches are wildly different. As the market becomes more saturated and it becomes harder and harder for brands to stand out, what steps should social media marketers take to catch the attention of their audience?

If you’d like to read the full report, visit Social Media Examiner.

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Report: Social Media Examiner 2017 State of Social Media Marketing |

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Lifestyle Photography Tips from Tiny Atlas Quarterly

We traveled to Tahiti with Tiny Atlas Quarterly, a travel and lifestyle magazine. Emily Nathan, the founder of TAQ, brought years of experience working in advertising with diverse clients to the trip. Here, she shares her advice for lifestyle and travel photographers shooting on location.

Be mindful of your destination

Setting cannot be stressed enough for lifestyle photography. First and foremost, Tiny Atlas has always chosen incredible locations for our shoots. The setting will create the world your talent is living in. We gravitate towards gorgeous and wild natural landscapes that our community has been dreaming of. They’re fun to travel to but don’t forgo a very necessary real world reality check. When planning, we think about any global conflicts, disease, etc. to avoid unnecessary drama, as we find that life brings enough surprises.

Choose your accommodation wisely

Any lifestyle shooter knows that sunrise and sunset are the most favorable times for great light (and great images). It is really important to choose where you stay carefully so you don’t waste precious time getting to and from your location. Ideally start and end your days exactly where you want to shoot. Don’t sacrifice price to stay in a hotel that is less expensive but will take you an additional hour and a half to reach your location and miss the best light. This is especially true if you are traveling with a big group. The more people in your party, the more time it takes to get them anywhere.

Plan around the best light

Plan your days around natural light. Lifestyle shoots don’t happen when you get to the location, they happen along the way, so keep a lookout for authentic moments en route. Plan downtime and meals when the light is the worst. For instance, don’t have a gorgeous dinner at sunset unless the plan is for dinner images. Eat meals and work on your image files when it’s too bright or dark out.

Source local talent

Casting models can be a challenge in remote locations. Fashion productions usually deal with this by bringing in models. But for Tiny Atlas, we try to work with local agencies and through referrals to find models who are ideally from the area. They will look like locals, speak the language, drive their own cars, and it’s awesome to meet more people to help you really connect with the place.

Bad makeup and hair can ruin any great lifestyle production. If you can bring a great hair and makeup artist (ideally one person who can do both) who you trust, it is a great value. If you can’t, just try to shoot models with gorgeous skin and you are all set.

Bring a variety of wardrobe options

Some models have wardrobe that is our style and some don’t. To make sure we have what we need we to insure great imagery we collaborate with brands we like (and reach out to new ones we are interested in working with) to pull some key pieces from their collections. Don’t bring too much, though. You are responsible to get pieces back to showrooms and the more you pull, the more you have to deal with returning. Also, you will likely shoot fewer looks than you may plan on for a lifestyle day (usually just 1-3 changes, or 1 look with layers) so save yourself the baggage fees and hassle with a tight edit, leaving pieces that aren’t key to the shoot at home.

Find support during and after the set

If you can have a digital tech on set with you your life will be much easier on the post side. At Tiny Atlas we often don’t have that luxury so we will just shoot all day though and download and organize files in the evening. I have often fallen asleep after a long day while backing up my work. Note: Backup your work and your phone! People often lose / have phones stolen while on the road and sometimes your favorite memories are there.

If you don’t have support on the post production side, have a process around file management and a naming convention. For guidance, ask a great digital tech how they organize. I just started to work more with Lightroom CC and Lightroom Mobile and it is really cool to be able to see the changes applied across devices.

See more images from Tiny Atlas and Tahiti on Fotolia.