We don’t envy the difficulty faced by publishers with respect to generating revenue. Time will tell whether the decisions by the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times and other premium content publishers to erect a paywall ushers in prosperity or poverty. Unfortunately, new research by Adweek and Harris Interactive, chronicled in Most Americans Not Willing to Pay to Read News Content Online, does not appear promising for the gated approach. In a survey of over 2,000 adults, only one in five indicated willingness to pay for daily newspaper content online, and only six percent were willing to pay more than $10 per month. Worse, this figure represents a decline. Since 2009, the percentage of adults willing to pay for daily newspaper content online dropped from 23 to 20 percent.Tweet
Content Marketing: All Hail the King
Posted by: Liz Mortek // April 21st, 2011
Whether you’re researching a car, catching up on the news, or getting a daily dose of your Twitter feed, we all go online seeking one thing: information.
A new article from Ruth Shipley for the Social Media Examiner, How to Create Content the Engages Prospects and Customers, explains the sure path to your customers’ hearts and into your prospect’s minds is too create content that provides exactly that. People are searching for information, and at the time that they need it. And they’re searching the internet.
So how can marketers use this to their advantage? According to Shipley, the key to igniting sales is to create online content and optimize it so that is appears on the first page of search results when your customers search for you or the products or services you sell. So, what is the moral of this story? Focus on your content, because as it turns out, content is king after all.Tweet
Nearly Nine in 10 Marketers Curating Content
Posted by: Neil James // April 19th, 2011
If content is king, curating content can be thought of us making offerings to the king, right? Okay, so maybe we’re stretching the metaphor. But just as making offerings to royalty was one of the hallmarks of dynastic eras gone by, curating content has become a staple practice for marketers, even if they’re doing so unknowingly! A new article from eMarketer, Sharing Content to Show Thought Leadership, discusses the extent to which both curating and creating content has become part of the marketer’s arsenal. eMarketer cites a recent HiveFire study that found almost half of all marketers actively curate content as part of their marketing strategy and that 85 percent were actively doing so, even if they weren’t strategically conscious of doing so. Why are they doing so? Research from Junta42 and MarketingProfs identified establishing thought leadership and building brand buzz as the predominant motivation behind content curation strategies.Tweet
Web Content – Dont Make Google Hulk Out On You
Posted by: Ben Schmidt // March 18th, 2011
Google has announced that it will be cracking down on content farms. In doing so, pages that feature better (and original) content will now be ranked higher in Google search results. Most of us don’t write for content farms (right?), but since this news casts a fresh spotlight on the value of quality web content, it’s a good excuse to think about the quality of content the rest of us are bringing to the table. Because we wouldn’t want to make Google angry. We wouldn’t like Google when it’s angry.
SEO Springboard’s 10 Steps To Writing Better Web Content is a great place to begin. Right from the get-go, we have a very good reminder – let’s not forget we’re writing content to be read…by another human being.
Yes, SEO is important, but keep in mind it’s only one of two masters we have to serve if we’re aiming for truly outstanding work. The other is your audience. Be they C-level executives or stay-at-home dads, decision makers or risk takers, techies or technophobes, you need to know who you’re trying to talk to.
With your audience identified you can distill it down to a simple profile. Now you’ve got something to write to, increasing the chances that “Bob” or “Beatrice” won’t just see your content; they’ll be affected by it. And that’s the goal right?
It should be.
Unless you’re a content farmer.Tweet
Frequent Distribution of Digital Content is Key, But Keep it Interesting
Posted by: Andrew Meyer // March 15th, 2011
On one hand, you want to impress your current and prospective customers with well-developed, engaging online content. But on the other, it might be easier to keep their attention with so-so articles you can write, post and tweet like it’s going out of style. There’s also the matter of this business you’re trying to operate. When something has to give, where does one skimp – quantity or quality?
The hard, predictable truth is neither content quality nor distribution frequency should be consistently sacrificed if one’s business depends on relationships developed through digital marketing. Adam Singer addresses the need to strike the right balance. “Marketing is a lot more consistent hands on creation than it used to be,” he writes. “You need equal parts creativity, planning, process and to get organized around execution.”Tweet
Nature Abhors a Vacuum – Advertisers Should Embrace It
Posted by: Neil James // February 7th, 2011
The classic quote “nature abhors a vacuum” applies equally to a variety of social and scientific constructs: politics, thermodynamics, pop culture and more. But how often do most advertisers reflect upon the unnatural existence of empty spaces? Not as often as they should, says Derek Halpern in an article for Social Triggers, How to Pull Readers Into Your Content Instantly. Just as in nature, according to Halpern, a gap in human knowledge is quickly filled, only knowledge gaps are filled with a substance much more precious to marketers – aroused curiosity. Halpern urges marketers to leverage George Lowenstein’s information gap theory of curiosity, that innate human behaviors are triggered when people feel there is a gap between what they know and what they want to know. Halpern explores the variety of ways marketers can approach copy and messaging to arouse curiosity and maximize reader interest.