I invited my original partner in podcasting crime, Jessie-Lee Nichols -- who is now the design supervisor here at IMPACT -- to the Content Lab this week to talk about one of our favorite topics. Organizations often struggle with where to put content creation into a process for projects like a website redesign, creating an infographic, or... well, any other time a designer and/or developer needs to get involved to create the final product of a content piece. It makes sense. Content creators and marketers often say they can't visualize the space their content is supposed to go into, so they want to see a full design before they start working on content. On the other hand, designers and developers push back on that logic, because they can't effectively design a final product without knowing the substance of the content they're supposed to be supporting with their creative talents. Moreover, they say there are other steps that need to occur before you get to play with fonts and colors. Obviously, there's a disconnect.
Hyper-personalization has become a way of life. From Netflix to Amazon and Spotify, brands have been using personalization to keeping customers engaged and loyal and as consumers, it’s really become the expectation. Buyers want to be able to access the information most valuable to them without having to jump through hoops to get it. If your website can deliver on that expectation, you’re cutting a lot of the clutter out of your sales process.
I’m a marketer who is definitely guilty of shiny object syndrome. I see something new and my first thought is almost always “Ooh, I need to do that!” Then, very often, that thought is followed by me putting whatever I happen to be working on aside and jumping on said new thing at the expense of the 1,000 other priorities on my daily to do list. Sound familiar?
Today’s conversation is a bit different. Instead of talking about storytelling tactics and how to become a better writer, we’re getting technical this week. More specifically, I’ve invited Franco Valentino of Narrative SEO to join me on this episode to talk about how content creators should be blending the art of content creation with the science of technical SEO. To be honest, this is a discussion I would have dreaded a year or two ago. The way a child might dread going to the dentist.
Happy Wednesday to you all -- and for many of you, I bid you a happy INBOUND or Content Marketing World week! This year, I find myself not in Boston or Cleveland for either event. Instead, I’m here in my home office in Annapolis, Maryland, with two dogs and a cat, the latter of which has a snoring problem. (Honestly, I didn’t know cats snored.) Anyway, while I’m bummed to be missing out on the action, I will say I love weeks like this. Since much of my team is up in Boston at HubSpot’s INBOUND conference, I get to spend almost the entire week in my little content cave completely uninterrupted. In case you didn't know, my quiet little content cave is where I’m happiest.
As a content strategist, I spend a lot of time working with internal and external stakeholders helping them solve their most pressing business blogging problems -- in addition to wielding overly-emotional opinions about the Oxford Comma. Some of the most common blogging challenges I hear are: “I know this blog article outline shouldn’t be taking this long.” “My content always falls flat with our audience.” “How am I supposed to tackle such a big topic in a single article?” While everyone needs to make peace with their content God about how creating content still requires actual effort -- sorry, content-creating gnomes aren’t a thing -- there are certain types of challenges that can be fixed easily, if not completely avoided in the first place. In fact, there are two simple blogging tips you can embrace right now that will instantly solve a vast majority of those problems and help you hit your content goals faster.
I'll be frank. If someone at IMPACT says, "I don't have time for professional development," it's usually a good indicator they are not a good fit to work here. To be fair, I haven't heard anyone say that in a number of years as it's clear when someone has that mindset, they don't last long. Here or anywhere, I strongly believe that you can't afford not to invest in your professional development. It's 100% unacceptable. However, just because professional development is important, doesn't mean it's easy. That's what we dive into this week on MarketHer.
"Brand storytelling." It's one of those concepts that sounded so deep and powerful when everyone first started talking about it. Sadly, it wasn't long before it was labeled as yet another well-meaning phrase that was completely ruined by marketers. (As the joke goes, "marketers ruin everything," right?) Regardless of its "buzzword-y" reputation, however, brand storytelling matters in a very big way. Because the brands that know how to tell their story effectively and authentically will always outperform those that don't. Period.