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.
I am back from vacation, and I have to admit that while I was excited to go on vacation, I am very happy to be back at my desk. Taking time off from work can be strangely stressful in a way, because it's easy to feel... well, lazy and useless, instead of relaxed, if you opt for a "staycation" like I did. That said, my "Welcome back!" to-do list right now is somewhat terrifying, so I'm going to set it aside for a moment to dive into this week's episode of Content Lab. At IMPACT, we publish more than 20 articles a week on our blog and have more than 50 contributors working with us at any given time to get that done. The woman behind all of this? Ramona Sukhraj, IMPACT’s Head of Editorial Content. I invited her to join me this week to talk about what it takes to be the person who owns content for an organization. Ramona and I know from experience that there's so much more to content management than formatting and publishing and wrangling a content calendar. From managing people and personalities, to handling missed deadlines and quality coaching, we talk about everything you need to know -- and what most folks won't tell you -- about how to be a great content manager without going insane. Enjoy!
Is original content that hard to create and stay on top of? Yes, and no! The day we sat down to record this episode of MarketHer, a memory popped up on Facebook that reminded me this was our one year anniversary of recording this show. We had our normal prep time talking about how we would discuss our one-year anniversary, which led us to how challenging it sometimes was creating new content every week for a year.
This week, I am on vacation. (Today, I plan to do something crazy like grocery shopping or dropping off the dry cleaning. Watch out, world! I'm a woman living on the edge!) But before I head out into the world, I want to share this week's episode of Content Lab, which features a conversation with one of my greatest professional inspirations -- Tamsen Webster, idea whisperer and former executive producer of TEDx Cambridge. As you all probably know, last week was IMPACT Live, which I wrote about at length on Monday. In addition to spending two days melting under the hot Hartford summer sun, I had a chance to speak about pillar content. Don't worry, this week isn't another conversation about pillar content. Instead, I invited Tamsen Webster to talk with me about the potency and power of spoken content. Yes, spoken content is a thing.