If you’re a B2B business, you might be curious about the benefits of LinkedIn marketing.
If you’re not, you should be! You’re jumping out of an airplane without a parachute, missing an opportunity to strip mine the largest business database in the world.
What Is LinkedIn Marketing?
LinkedIn marketing is the use of the online social networking site LinkedIn to build connections, mutually beneficial relationships, and rapport with different stakeholders from and outside your industry. These can be business partners, prospective customers, or potential employees/team members.
Why You Should Be Marketing on LinkedIn Right Now?
LinkedIn is a medium that forms an indispensable part of your social media marketing campaigns. It allows users to achieve marketing goals and business objectives such as generating leads, increasing brand reputation and awareness, and driving sales.
It provides you with handy business analysis tools. It’s where you’ll meet most of your ideal clients or customers.
Basically, we’re living in such a digital marketing and social media era that if you are not promoting yourself on the largest business database in the world, then you are lacking “drip,” as the young people say.
The Evidence on LinkedIn Is Clear
Most of the LinkedIn B2B marketers use the platform for organic marketing. This network has a great reputation for yielding the most relevant organic results. It is also the go-to lead generation for companies regardless of their industry. Check out these interesting stats that are not necessarily seen on other social media platforms.
What Is LinkedIn Organic?
“Organic” content is basically content that you do not pay to show. It’s nonpaid advertising and does not appear as a paid promotion on your future customer’s news feed.
Your LinkedIn Success Is a Few Trackable Metrics Away
The site offers some internal analytics that you can track to make data-driven decisions, achieve your goals, and optimize your efforts.
Reach signifies how many times the content you have shared has been seen by users.
Impression is the amount of times your content has been displayed on profiles’ feeds.
Follower demographic that includes job seniority, location, industry….
Clicks which is the number of clicks you get on your content to land on your website.
The LinkedIn platform allows you to customize your industry-specific variable searches which is ideal for B2B businesses. If you have a company page or are using your personal LinkedIn profile, you can easily reach out to your target audience or future customers. We can even start calling this process professional networking instead of targeting!
You can start joining groups and interact and exchange information with your group members. You often hear gurus preaching LinkedIn advertising. You may be using a free account or subscribing to one of LinkedIn’s services. One of the tools businesses are increasingly using is Sales Navigator, LinkedIn’s premium offering offering advanced search capability.
If sign up for Sales Nav, LinkedIn will automatically give you one month free. We at Content with Teeth can get you two free months to check out the platform and see if it’s a good fit. Sign up for a free consultation and we’ll hook you up.
What About Your LinkedIn Marketing Strategy
Your LinkedIn marketing strategy is basically similar to any other social media marketing strategy. However, you need to work on positioning yourself as a thought leader in your industry. This also depends on what you are really there to do. Are you on LinkedIn to attract new talent, increase your sales or brand awareness, engage with your target audience, reveal your expertise or connect with similar professionals in your field?
The Beginner’s Guide to Organic LinkedIn Marketing
Fully utilize the magic search tool LinkedIn offers that allows companies to target the users they are looking for. This isn’t necessarily found on other social media platforms or social networking sites.
Is Marketing on LinkedIn Worth It?
Totally, and we’re skipping the LinkedIn ads too! We’ll spill some tea here: you don’t have to spend tons of money on advertising anymore!
One thing you really need to take care of though is generating high-quality content. Opt for quality over quantity.
Advanced Search on LinkedIn for Free
If you don’t have the budget to invest in LinkedIn Sales Navigator now, don’t worry. We’ve got you covered. You have the ability to narrow down your audience and exclude specific people with Boolean search terms.
Although the number of times you can search something on a LinkedIn free version is limited to a certain number and period of time.
Hijack Boolean Terms in Your Search Hunt
Employ Boolean to narrow your focus in any version of LinkedIn from the free version to Sales Navigator.
The table below will teach you some of the parameters:
Get Your Hands Dirty with a Real Search for Professionals on LinkedIn
Let’s imagine you are a marketing professional in the Miami area and your niche market is local IT companies that offer cloud solutions. You intend to target COO’s.
Head to your LI profile and type in “cloud solutions” AND COO
You will get a list of results like the one below
4. The first level of search is the filter. You can pick any or all, depending on what you’re looking for.
7. Next, scroll down choose your location. We are choosing the Miami-Fort Lauderdale Area.
8. Now, you have a whole bunch of other practical filters you can use such as current company, past company, school, industry, etc…
9. In our case, we’ll check the Information Technology and Services box.
10. You can add in keywords, then hit “Show Results”.
11. You will get a list of individuals that meet these criteria.
12. Choose a profile you’re interested in.
13. Hit “Connect” on your prospect profile to send them a Connect Request or invite to engage.
14. Click on “Add a note” to write a customized message. You should be politely asking the person for a connect request and stating what’s in it for them. Remember that you have a 300-character limit. Hit send and congratulations! You’re utlizing the power of LinkedIn marketing at minimal cost and time.
What About LinkedIn Sales Navigator?
There are more than 20 categories you can choose from. These include company size, seniority level, etc…
This precious LinkedIn tool has become indispensable to countless marketers out there. Basically, this takes your lead generation efforts to a new level and allows you to build meaningful business relationships. You may even skip social media!
However, if you are not currently ready to invest in SalesNav, the regular LinkedIn search function will get it done!
LinkedIn Organic Social Media Marketing Best Practices
Optimize your company pages (about, title, cover photo, profile photo, posts…). Remember, this is not Facebook. So, forget the personal and focus on the educational and professional.
Make sure you have a website to direct your audience to (and to increase your web traffic at the same time.)
Work on building your network as much as you can.
Create and share thought leadership articles with your network. Yes, long-form content is still in. You just have to use tactics to make your prospect read your work.
Make sure you are conducting LinkedIn search engine optimization. Think of LinkedIn as one of the search engines you’re familiar with. This means that you should be using keywords that your audience may use to find you in your title or About area.
Content With Teeth and Your LinkedIn Marketing Efforts
Learn how you can benefit from and leverage your LinkedIn page to fuel your company growth and generate quality leads for your business.
From a business analyst in one of Miami’s biggest firms to opening a one-room school in South Beach with one student …
Possessing a passport stamped with countries from all around the globe…
Watching the school grow with an intensive English program with thousands and thousands of international students …
40 different nationalities passing through its corridors …
Meet the man who triumphs over the Tower of Babel. Meet Greg Degnan in the latest episode of The Come Up, Content with Teeth’s short video podcast profiling the up-and-coming entrepreneurial scene in Southwest Florida.
The Come Up Episode 5 Highlights
Here is what to look for in our latest episode where host Scrappy Jackson interviews a dynamic educator and inspiring entrepreneur.
What does Greg learn most from his students? Because of the melange of different cultures and viewpoints in one room, you learn more from the students than the students do from you.
Is teaching English a dead-end career? The English language is still the PEOPLE’S language. Learn why the industry has a lot of growth potential.
What advice would Degnan give to his 12-year-old self? Follow your dreams but find out why it’s important to be a generalist instead of a specialist.
The future of a Language Center and an English Language Institute: Online, virtual reality and lost in the Metaverse.
What does Greg value most when hiring English teachers? Experience! Watch the episode to find out exactly why – the reason might surprise you.
In this episode, meet an interesting dude who started his career hanging out with Magic and The Dream Team in Barcelona during the 1992 Olympics.
About Greg Degnan and Content with Teeth
For UnBoring Content like The Come Up, contact Content with Teeth HERE. Find Degnan’s South Beach Languages school if you want to study English or a new language HERE.
The Come Up Episode 5 Video Transcript
Scrappy Jackson: What’s up, what’s up, what’s up, I’m Scrappy. And this is the Come Up. Entrepreneurs on the rise throughout Southwest Florida. We have ’em for you. They’re fascinating. They’re genuine. They’re innovative. Content with Teeth, a real innovative marketing company. They do content marketing. They’re our sponsor, and they’re doing it really big. Just like this fat head behind me. Today’s guest is an entrepreneur. That’s doing big things as well. His name is Greg Degnan. He’s from the University of Florida. He’s a teacher. He does really interesting things in South Beach, Fort Myers and Hollywood with his schools. Greg. Welcome.
Greg Degnan: Thanks, Scrappy. Great to be here.
Scrappy Jackson: Yeah, it’s really great for you to be here as well. And, uh, my first question is, you know, you went to the University of Florida. You got a great education. What did you do from jump right at the beginning?
Greg Degnan: Great. Yeah, go Gators. I’m a graduate. I’m a proud Gator graduate in 1991. I was there. I had, Emmitt Smith actually in one of my classes, but, yeah, as when I graduated in 91, the majority of my friends, and peers were going off to get jobs, you know, in Miami, Orlando, Atlanta, whatever city they could, but I really wanted to travel. So I took off, I got a passport and I started just traveling all over. I was all, I went all over Latin America to almost every country in Latin America, all over Europe. At that time they had the Interrail pass. So we traveled to other countries and I also hit Asia and interesting. My first job real job was with a dream team in, uh, Barcelona.
Scrappy Jackson: Oh, cool. Very cool. So tell us about the dream team. That’s amazing.
Greg Degnan: Yeah, it was awesome. I got to meet all the players. I mean, my job was nothing special. I was in logistics, transportation, kind of getting the players around. I wrote a short book about it called, chasing the dream team, but I had some great moments. You know, just speaking with Magic and Clyde Drexler and some of these guys. I actually was translating for them. Cause one of the things that, because it was in Spain, I had Spanish. So when the players would go out and try to communicate, I would help them. A lot of funny stories and, I just saw Magic has a documentary now on Apple TV, it’s called, They Call Me Magic. It’s an amazing documentary and I’m, I have a little cameo in there. I’m younger. Yeah.
Scrappy Jackson: That’s awesome. So a lot of students, they go abroad. They wanna have some fun. Right out of college. They’re not sure what they wanna do. Do you do the same thing or you looking to find yourself or do you know exactly what you wanted to do with your career at that point?
Greg Degnan: Uh, yeah. Great question. I, I just want, I wasn’t ready to go to an office. I studied finance at UF at University of Florida, and I just really wanted to travel after being in school for so long. And in fact, I had no idea what I wanted to do, and what I found very quickly is the easiest job to get as you’re traveling is an English teacher. Because everybody, you know, in different countries speak different languages. And at that time, especially, they all wanted to learn English. So I would just ride the train in Europe, for example. And if a city looked nice, like I would stop in Budapest, get off. And within a day or two, I would have a job as an English teacher, which was really amazing. And it taught me, you know, to start to love teaching. Cause before that I had no experience teaching English, but I learned, you know, the methodology, teaching English to international students of all ages, different group sizes. And it really helped my public speaking and presence as well.
Scrappy Jackson: So you are in South America, you have a finance degree. How do you get back to United States and get a job?
Greg Degnan: Yeah, eventually I came back, just, I had my passport stamped a lot all over the world and I came back and I went to UM, University of Miami for my MBA. I wanted to get a little more serious on the business side and that created a lot of opportunities. I had a lot of great internships at Burdines, which is now Macy’s. And if you remember Burdines, that was a big store in Florida a while ago. I did some great things there. We would work on an algorithm, for advertising to find the best advertising mix. At that time, they had this huge budget for advertising. This was pre-internet. So they had to decide how much are we gonna spend in TV? How much are we gonna spend on radio? How much are we gonna spend in direct mail?
Greg Degnan: So we, I was part of a team that created the algorithm to find that perfect mix by product category. What will our budget be? That was a great project. I worked at, BACARDÍ in the liquor industry for a couple of years, doing projects. That was also amazing cause they’re based in Miami. At that time, BACARDÍ was introducing flavors. So in the past, they would just have, you know, three BACARDÍ, file in the middle of the shelf on the shelf. Right, right. There was a hundred brands at that time. So what they did that was very smart is started introducing flavors. And that was part of the, the group that introduced BACARDÍ LIMÓN, BACARDÍ O, BACARDÍ Razz. And once they started introducing all these flavors, it took up all the shelf space.
Scrappy Jackson: Sure. Cause they had all the leverage. Right.
Greg Degnan: Exactly. So they kind of knocked out all these mom-and-pop, you know, rum companies and just kind of took over and got stronger and stronger at that time.
Scrappy Jackson: So you’re in the corporate world, but somewhere, international teaching, you know, speaking the languages. That pool must have come in somewhere.
Greg Degnan: Exactly. Yeah. I missed it. So even as great jobs that I had and experiences, and as an analyst, as a business analyst in Miami, working for these great companies, part of me still, you know, still in a cubicle, I still had a boss and I just kind of wanted to go do my own thing. So I had such a great experience teaching that I opened the one-room school in South Beach, called it South Beach languages. And at the beginning, I was the only teacher, you know, one room, one student and little. I remember my first place was on 12th McCollins Avenue paying $300 a month, you know, just for one little room. And then little by little, we grew it, we added students. And today we, you know, we have, we’ve got thousands and thousands of students,
Scrappy Jackson: You have a diversity of students. How many countries have gone through your corridors?
Greg Degnan: Um, I would say probably 30 or 40.
Scrappy Jackson: Wow.
Greg Degnan: Different countries at least, at least.
Scrappy Jackson: And just, how do you, how do you communicate to so many different ones?
Greg Degnan: Yeah, that’s a great question. Cause like, again, when I taught in Mexico I had a class of 12 Mexican students. Right. So they were all familiar with Spanish and English. Whereas in Miami Beach, we might have a class with one Brazilian, one Japanese, one person from Serbia, it’s all, all mixed. So that teachers only speak and teach in English. So they go slowly. they have methodologies to use. So it’s up to the students to learn. It’s kind of an immersion methodology.
Scrappy Jackson: Sure, sure. In your hallways, is there cultural diversity to the point where they need to assimilate?
Greg Degnan: Um, yeah. I, I’m not sure. What, what you mean exactly, but like the, for example, it’s amazing having all these different cultures in one class, right? So a lot of students come up to us at the end of their experience and be like, wow, you know, I’ve never had that kind of experience where I had conversations with a French person and a Brazilian person and a Japanese person and a somebody from Bangladesh. And what it does is this kind of a microcosm of the world. You see all these nationalities coming together, talking to each other. Of course, there’s a lot of arguments, you know, with different viewpoints and economics and politics and all these things. But the 99% of them go home, like, wow, that was, that was a great experience.
Scrappy Jackson: You have South Beach, you got Hollywood, you have tutoring in Fort Myers. If I’m somebody that wants to be a teacher at your school, what’s the first question you ask me.
Greg Degnan: Um, I value experience the most. So I would say how much, how many years of English teaching experience do you have? Obviously, if you’re a kindergarten teacher or first-grade teacher, that actually is pretty helpful because you, you know, you’re teaching people with at the beginning stages, which is what we’re doing. They don’t know any English, a lot of them. So we do take, English teachers all the time. New English teachers. Experience. And most of our teachers have to have a certificate depending on the course of teaching. An English, ESL certificate, TEFL, they call it.
Scrappy Jackson: So you’re a teacher. You become this incredible entrepreneur. What advice do you give teachers today as far as getting into this game?
Greg Degnan: Well again, I most teachers from what I’ve seen, aren’t going into it for money at all. Because teaching, you know, in general, and especially teaching English, not something you’re gonna get rich, you have to really want to, you know, be a teacher to connect with people and see that light, you know, go on in the student’s head when they learn something. In terms of business, I think it’s still a big opportunity. If people are business people are looking for opportunities, I think this industry still has a long way to go in terms of growth. The world is becoming a little more isolated now, so it’s becoming a little bit harder to get students from everywhere like we used to. But there’s still a lot of opportunity for growth and it’s still, English is still the world language.
Scrappy Jackson: I have visited your schools and there’s an incredible culture. It, it really is, you know, the students are immersed, the teachers are immersed, and throughout the hallways, you get a special feeling it’s really, really cool. The way you put it together. It’s almost a spiritual experience for real. So given that, what is it that you’ve learned the most from your students?
Greg Degnan: I think, yeah, it’s a cliche, but when you teach English, you learn more than you teach. It’s really fascinating. All of the different cultures, again in the world coming to USA to learn English. And they have they’re in awe and big respect for this country, cuz they’re here. They’ve chosen to come here. But just learning from them, their experiences. So we might go around and say, Hey, tell us the culture, uh, of your country. Like, you know, in USA we celebrate independence day in 4th of July, what’s going on in your country? And they’ll tell us the whole story.
Scrappy Jackson: You mentioned earlier, there’s a lot of opportunities in education. What’s your personal vision and where are you going with your career and your company?
Greg Degnan: Yeah, I used to think the answer was building more schools. For a while, we were kind of expanding in that way. But we stopped that and we’re basically focusing more on content. So we are a big school in South Beach and we’re trying to create more content because as the world is becoming more online, obviously, as education, what’s happening with COVID the last couple of years, there’s kind of a, more of a, a realization that the future of our industry and education, in general, is gonna be online. It’s gonna be virtual reality. It’s gonna be Metaverse, all these, all these things you’re hearing about. Right? Right. You put on a headset and be in a class you don’t really need to physically go somewhere as much. Right. You could still have that experience with a teacher with, or the classmates, but online. So at the moment, we’re working on more content, developing our technology as opposed to just trying to make a bunch of franchises. We’re trying to have more content. So, more students around the world can connect with us wherever they are.
Scrappy Jackson: That’s cool. That’s very cool. And as far as Southwest Florida goes, how do we connect with you as far as tutoring is concerned or online classes?
Greg Degnan: Sure. Yeah. In Southwest Florida. At the moment, we offer online, group classes, in-private classes, in English, and Spanish. So if you’d like, if you’re interested in learning Spanish, for example, or English, at the moment, you could still inquire about French, Portuguese, other languages. We may have a teacher available, but because it’s online, we can give you a, for example, if you wanna learn Spanish, we might have a great teacher in Miami that can just get online with you twice a week. It’s about, it’s reasonable. It’s about $40 an hour. The teachers will be flexible with your schedule, you know, best time for you. So yeah, let us know. Our website is SBL.edu like South Beach Languages, SBL.edu. And you can come on our website and make an inquiry.
Scrappy Jackson: Okay. Finally, Greg, if you have to give advice to your 12-year-old self, what would it be?
Greg Degnan: That’s great. Yeah, one of my favorite authors is a guy named Scott Adams. He does the Dilbert cartoon and he speaks about being a generalist as opposed to being a specialist. And I really agree with that. And I found in my life by it’s more of like the baseball analogy of like being a utility player, as opposed to like the saver in baseball. Right. I think of myself more as a utility player, I can go in across different industries. That would be the advice I would give. Follow your dreams, but don’t be too specialized. Be open and try to, instead of saying, this is the only thing I’m gonna put all my eggs in this basket, I would say have a little bit of, have three or four strengths and develop all of them as opposed to just one thing.
Scrappy Jackson: So you gave great advice to your 12-year-old self.
Greg Degnan: Hopefully I did, right? Follow me.
Scrappy Jackson: Greg Degnan, South Beach Languages, South Beach, Southwest Florida, Hollywood, and incredible entrepreneur. We’re brought to you by Content with Teeth. Content with Teeth, a content marketing company, doing really big things, just like this logo behind me, Greg. Thank you so much for your time, man. We really appreciate it.
Which refrigerator above are they going to feed from?
You probably leaned toward the picture on the left. Copywriting stocks your fridge with abundant and bountiful delicious food that will feed your famished prospects.
Is Copywriting Meaningless Jargon?
“Copywriting” has become something of a buzzword for marketers and businesses in this digital era.
…and it makes complete sense. Owing to the rapid digitalization in pretty much every industry, businesses now need to invest more towards their online presentation than offline…and when it comes to the online world, words matter more than you may think.
The term content writing is more like informing, educating, entertaining, or instructing readers whereas copywriting is what we do to make things sell – it threads urgency and scarcity into a headline to elicit rapid action.
Copywriting involves tenacious research and is more like mining – where a miner digs, drills, and dynamites until he comes across carloads of valuable ore. Surprisingly, copywriting is proven to have generated 126% more leads for small businesses!
Those are some powerful stats, right?
They are also an urgent call for businesses to invest in copy before time runs out.
Now, we are fully aware that creating consistent, engaging content not only takes a significant amount of time but requires specialized skills. But every cent and second spent on a copy is worth it. Here’s why:
4 Reasons Why Copywriting Is Crucial for Small Businesses
Converting Ideas into Valuable Content
There is always a problem and solution behind the creation of a brand. An idea that has formed the foundation of business. But unless that idea is effectively communicated, you cannot capture the attention of your ideal customer.
You need someone who can convert your ideas into attention-grabbing content that actually reaches your prospects.
Great copy or well-written content is crucial for a small business due to the same reason; copy speaks the language of your audience and connects with them by converting your ideas into valuable content.
Emotionally Connecting With Your Audience
Emotionally connecting with your prospective customers is crucial for every small business. Unfortunately, many new businesses make the mistake of sharing why their product or company is great instead of focusing on what the prospects want to read.
The thing is, your client cares about only one thing; what is in it for them. Their pain points are the same as the benefits your product provides. But it is a copywriter’s job to frame the writing in such a way that those benefits are presented as the customers’ challenges, pain points and needs.
Let me give you an example
“The XYZ product by Acme Corporation has features A and B” vs. “Save time and dedicate your focus to the core business needs of destroying the Road Runner by taking advantage of A and B, the newest features in Acme Corp’s XYZ product”.
Now, the first version states the benefits of your product while the second version emphasizes what solution the customer (Wile E. Coyote) is getting.
It all boils down to the understanding of how to trigger the right emotions that will induce a potential customer to want to buy from you; words that will make your prospective client think, “this company really gets me”.
Creating a Voice and Personality for the Brand
Building a unique brand voice and weaving it across all networks are extremely crucial. In this era, your small business needs its own voice that effectively portrays its vibe and idea to the target audience.
For instance, Uber has a specific brand voice that is bold and simple. You’ll see that every tagline this brand puts out has very few words that are simple and direct, like ‘Where to, John?’ or “Your Uber Awaits” or “See you soon”.
Whether they use their name in the tagline or not, Uber’s copy tone is consistent across all countries and departments in such a way that whenever you read a line, you can say, “Hey, that sounds like Uber”.
This consistent image can only be achieved through copywriting that translates across all your brand’s channels, be it online or offline.
Increasing Website Traffic and Sales
Here’s the thing: quality copywriting is like having a top salesperson selling your stuff 24/7.
This digital era is all about the online presence of your business. A good copywriter can hone in on target customers like Wile E. Coyote’s Acme missile and boost the conversion rates of your web pages. Even a solid freelance copywriter with in depth understanding of your brand can write actionable copy that turns more of your website’s visitors into customers and ultimately improves search engine results.
The ultimate goal of any and every business effort, after all, is to gain clientele and generate revenue…and you can get tons of traffic without copywriting too. SEO does that, right? But without good copywriting, you could have all the traffic in the world but generate only a trickle of sales.
Insert Mind-Blowing Stat Here
In 2014, copywriting generated $26.47 billion in revenue for companies and the market has shown double-digit growth since then. This is because effective copy taps into the emotional side of your audience and makes your product look worth investing in.
Let the Wizards of Words Work Copywriting Magic
Copywriting is an art that sometimes gets pushed back into your pile of important business-related tasks. As a result, businesses often fail to unlock their full growth potential. CWT’s DFY (Done For You) copywriting services run the gamut – from bottom-of-funnel collateral to generate leads and drive conversions to top-of-sales-funnel content for building awareness. We take off the burden from clients’ shoulders and do initial keyword research, research the topic, write the copy and then optimize for SEO to attract potential customers so our clients can devote themselves to other areas of business.
Stock the Fridge, Bro
Medium and large businesses can often take the risk of ignoring copy needs for a while but if you are a small business, you need to emphasize converting every single lead you can. That’s where the need for an impeccable copy from a professional copywriter arises. But small businesses are often not equipped to create pro-quality copy ….which is exactly why 64% of B2B companies outsource their copywriting services to a good copywriter.
But which copy service provider will suit your needs best? You need a copy that not only brings in great traffic but also converts leads into repeat buyers…and that’s where we come in! Content With Teeth specializes in providing exceptional copywriting services that convert bored internet junkies into recurring paying customers. Get in touch and let’s stock your small business fridge with tasty treats that hordes of hungry prospects can chow down on.
As a connoisseur of old school rap, we wanted to view marketing automation tools through the prism of Public Enemy.
Why Should You Care?
What if you ain’t down with Public Enemy? What if Neil Sedaka is more your speed? What if you see the phrase marketing automation and your eyes instantly glaze over like when a work meeting extends into the Hour 2 mark …
You should read this post because we aim to make this topic interesting through the prism of pop culture. We show how you can use marketing automation to drum up substantial new business and, besides, we compare it to flatulence. Where else you gonna see that comparison? Keep reading!
Cue Up the Marketing Automation Example
We recently received a LinkedIn invite to connect with someone who most likely automated the organic LinkedIn outreach.
This message is impersonal, generic and sloppy. The person didn’t bother with a personalized first name placeholder and addressed me as “Hi there.”
The Connect Request seems generic in the icebreaker, building lukewarm intrigue by mentioning that the sender is “moving into” our geographic location defined generically as “the area.”
The Call to Action has a typo where there is a “form” instead of a “from.”
In processing this invite in seconds, I got a completely inauthentic feeling that I was being splattered by a massive automation gun and, consequently, blew the dude off.
If Chuck D got this message, he might compare it to smelling a fart from a passenger next to him on an airplane. The Public Enemy frontman isn’t pretending that he didn’t SMELL automation and is calling bullsh*t.
Is a Marketing Automation Strategy Hype?
P.E.’s 1988 song Don’t Believe the Hype enjoyed immense critical success. Frustrated, confounded and suppressed by the establishment, their message to the audience was don’t buy into media lies and propagandistic marketing. The group’s leader, Chuck D, espouses that we be critical thinkers in spite of what’s presented. Hype and reality do not go hand in hand. Hype is talk without the walk.
Is marketing automation innovation or just spam? Is a marketing automation platform like HubSpot kitty litter for media and business elites to gush over in their insatiable thirst to cash in on the latest trends?
Marketing Automation Is Hype!
If you were remotely familiar with Public Enemy and Chuck D, a hard-scrabbled King to his sidekick Flavor Flav’s Jester role, you would assume the seer armed with a mic feels marketing automation is a steaming pile of bull excrement:
An automated cold email addressed “Dear Friend” isn’t intimate. It’s robotic. You’ve got our stats, but you don’t know us.
We’re just a cell in a massive Excel file. We can sense your automated “intimacy” is just you calculating a spreadsheet formula. You don’t care about us.
You spit out words in an automated SMS but we can’t hear you. Nuttin’ but noise! You didn’t segment your list and mistargeded us. We reply STOP to the disinterested bot hawking cheap carburetors.
As technology rushes, we lose touches. We believed initially in social media too. Now we understand why the people who build this stuff don’t let their kids use it.
Automated Marketing Campaigns: As Inauthentic As the Guy Who Sold You a Used Buick Sending You a Holidays Card Where He Misspells Your Name
Is Chuck D still living in the ‘80’s or does he have a valid point about the inability of marketing automation to effectively and meaningfully interact with humans?
Given the pro’s and con’s of marketing automation software, today’s digerati might chalk up P.E. as old school with critiques of marketing techniques and marketing automation tools as outdated as the group’s standard definition videos.
Marketing Automation Origin
Back in the day, prudent marketers utilized Print, Radio, TV and Billboards to hawk widgets. Today, traditional media has been supplanted by internet marketing, of which marketing automation plays a central role.
Today, marketers use software like HubSpot to create automated marketing workflows and marketing activities from launching campaigns to creating and scheduling posts, email campaigns, SMS/MMS, social media management and other “touches.”
Marketing automation is more efficient, cost effective and requires less bandwidth to nurture incipient and long-standing customer relationships. In so doing, it has morphed automation into a CRM (Customer Relationship Management), allowing integration to automate repetitive tasks and carpet bomb your contacts with some level of finesse and at a lower price point while scoring invaluable customer data.
Is There a Correlation Between Marketing Automation and Robots?
Marketing automation naysayers cite similarities. Times Magazine estimated that 2 million jobs will be replaced by robots by 2025. Robots are cleaning floors at Wendy’s, checking in guests at hotels, taking blood pressure readings at CVS, harvesting vegetables, erecting buildings and keeping malls secure as guards. Marketing automation is replacing sales people. Touch point marketing teams promoting face-to-face customer relations, flyers, street teams, personal trend influence marketing and site sampling are facing extinction. Call centers are leasing their space.
Companies that implement this kind of lead scoring enjoy 28% better sales productivity and 33% higher revenue growth than companies without lead scoring. Marketing automation saves money and time. Done well, nurturing can result in 50% more sales leads at 33% lower cost per lead.
2 Types of HubSpot Marketing Automation Features
Content with Teeth (CWT) is an official HubSpot partner. We will discuss automation in one of the most dynamic marketing automation platforms.
A Sequence is email based. A Workflow is more dynamic because it sets enrollment triggers to automatically enroll prospects or contacts with an assortment of data points from clicking on a button in an email to past purchases.
Is Marketing Software That Automates Across Multiple Channels Just Another Dumb Trend?
We have jumped on the marketing hype train. A few years ago, chatbots were the rage. They allow automated messaging in Facebook’s Messenger and other platforms. We saw an ad on Facebook promising hundreds of leads for a bargain, $0.99 a warm body or something similarly ridiculous. As connoisseurs of clickbait, we signed up for the webinar and bought the course north of a grand.
The entrepreneur promised a 30-day money back guarantee. He answered questions diligently on a Facebook Group as we students got into the course. After 30 days, the dude ghosted, leaving students in the dust. Chatbots were a thing … yes, a scammy thing.
Marketing Automation Ain’t Hype!
Marketing automation helps and can be particularly effective when used with a content strategy. According to a ReportLinker press release:
The marketing automation software market was estimated at USD 3.60 billion in 2020 and is expected to be USD 11.46 billion in 2027, registering at a CAGR [Compound Annual Growth Rate] of 17.76% through the forecast period (2021-2027).
Businesses big and small are investing in marketing automation software like never before. Sorry Chuck D.
Need a Reliable Worker in 2021? Get a Bot …
In 2021, people talk about the “Great Resignation” where employees would rather work on their own instead of toiling for companies both big and small. In a tough labor market, employers from enterprise companies to start-ups can replace marketing efforts with automation.
A “bot” is available 24/7. If a prospect lands on your website on Friday night at 3am, marketing automation tools like chat workflows in HubSpot can respond and nurture a conversation that is sent to a human Sales Dedicated Representative the following Monday morning to follow up. Furthermore, a platform like HubSpot can conduct lead scoring to prioritize the most promising leads for that SDR.
Marketing automation is always working, requires no expensive benefits and is reliable once you have mastered the basics.
Combining Inbound Content with Outbound Marketing Automation
Content marketing, inbound or whatever you want to call it, typically snails, taking 3-6 months to create engagements.
Says Neil Patel on the long-term outbound strategy:
Do you know that it takes at least 3 months to get rewarding traffic from search engines?
To see a considerable uplift in numbers from the search engines, you’ll really need 6 months. HubSpot shared that their organic traffic grew by 538% in a year, solely by relying on their personas to dictate their keyword usage.
Marketing automation is a short-term fix. Prospects get your emails, texts or social media messages and can respond immediately.
When you combine inbound with outbound, you shorten the cycle to gain traction from your content. For example, a dynamic inbound blog post (more content), coupled with the outbound method (marketing automation), is a recipe for immediate engagements and effective lead generation.
Hey Chuck D, the “Hype” Worked For Us
Recently, we ran a HubSpot workflow triggered by contacts in our mass list opening an email blast promoting a blog post on how to use LinkedIn to develop buyer personas. We enrolled 255 people in the Workflow, landed three meetings and enjoyed interest from one business owner who ultimately signed a long-term contract with Content with Teeth.
With the addition of this previous client into a long-term retainer, we were able to pay off the cost of developing the blog and automation mere weeks into the new contract.
Best Practices for Automation
Here are some suggestions for marketing automation in general.
Hit ‘em on air, sea and land with email, SMS, social media and multiple channels. People learn differently. Some from reading, others from video. Some prospects might rely on email while others engage more with a message on their phone or a LinkedIn message.
Use placeholders beyond your name. “Dear Friend” isn’t cutting it. Consider adding name, company into your messaging to disguise your automation to prospects who are growing more savvy to impersonal messaging.
Break your lists into parts. CWT had a list of 2,500. We whittled it down to 1,000, then segmented it by business owners, marketing people and local Florida-based businesses. If we send a humorous “Florida Man” satirical post to the owner of a small business in Omaha, she is going to ignore it or unsubscribe because the content doesn’t align with her interests.
Hubspot Marketing Automation Best Practices
Here are some marketing automation tips for the HubSpot sales and marketing platform.
Don’t overload your contacts with messages. Build in delays, so you give people a breather. We recommend at least three days between messages.
In picking a particular delay, we recommend using “Delay for a set amount of time”.
Be careful with “Delay until event happens”. That means if the contact gets an email and opens it, they immediately get the next email or message. This could be useful if the prospect is eager and you want to convert them. From our experience, however, the contact gets bombarded with emails and unsubscribes. You now have lost a lead.
If/Then branches follow conditional logic. IF the prospect opens your email, THEN they receive an additional action like another email or text message.
You can create different “branches” as shown by the Interest and No Interest ones above. BE VERY CAREFUL deleting an If/Then branch.
You don’t want to lose HOURS of work from a complex workflow by mistakenly selecting “This action and all after it”, removing all branches below this particular action.
Open Letter to Public Enemy’s Chuck D
You run into Chuck D at Publix. He is shopping for Henny and you forget his name, just remembering him blankly as one of the faces on that CNN ‘90’s special.
You ask him to take a selfie and he flees. He just got off a flight in Florida where some dude next to him beefed automation. He isn’t having it!
Chuck, hire us to write creative content for the Public Enemy blog. We will combine it with marketing automation that disguises the stench with personalization, omnichannel outreach and other effective marketing automation strategies.
We will prove you wrong that marketing automation is hype! It Will Take a Nation of Millions to Hold P.E. Down circa 2021.
Content with Teeth is a HubSpot marketing automation provider. If you have questions on how to wring results from marketing automation and generate leads, please get in touch.
So you’ve heard the term content creator. But you’re not sure what it means. Let’s define it: A content creator creates content.
But let’s expand on that.
A content creator provides information and/or entertains like taking a free stock photo (Angela Roma from Pexels.com) and adding a silly message.
There are different types of content creators or content producers: content writers (i.e. blogs, social media posts, landing pages, etc.), news writers (i.e. articles), photographers, video creators, and much more. You can create content on various platforms and marketing channels in a wide range of industries.
Business marketing teams assign a person (or people) who creates content to build awareness and drive organic traffic to their website.
Why You Should Care?
As a business owner or marketing professional, you NEED content to build a pipeline and guide leads down a sales funnel. Without it, you won’t be able to give your audience the information they crave. You might be sick and tired of this phrase, but content really is king. You can’t inform, entertain, and persuade your target audience without it.
Content creation and lead generation go hand in hand. So take advantage of a content creator to drive traffic to your website, help people solve problems and boost conversions.
What Is an Example of a Content Creator?
Billy Wilder, co-screenwriter and director of the film noir classic Sunset Boulevard, was a “content creator” before that term was even coined.
The beauty of content is that you can repurpose it in other media and multiple forms. For example, you can see Sunset Boulevard in multiple iterations.
Other content creators have turned the film into a musical (the original London production closed in 1997 after 1530 performances) and books (Sam Stagg’s expose of behind-the-scenes making of the film Close-up on Sunset Boulevard).
Before becoming a screenwriter and director in Hollywood, Wilder avoided getting into the family cake business, dabbled in journalism as a stringer and was even a taxi dancer in Berlin.
Most content creators AREN’T legendary Hollywood writers or directors. Most content creators DO take the circumstances and events from their lives and others and use this clay – like Wilder – to mold interesting work.
If old movies and their directors don’t push your buttons, here’s …
3 Reasons Why You Should Care About Sunset Boulevard
We get it. You hear about old movies that aren’t even in color and groan. Why should you care about prehistoric stuff like Sunset Boulevard?
1. For the introverts: join a work Zoom call without video. When others ask why your camera is off, turn it on and tell the group, “All right, Mr. DeMille, I’m ready for my close-up!” People on the call may have zero idea what you’re talking about but innately know you are talking over their heads. They may diss you behind your back but will ultimately leave you alone.
2. For the ladies: Use the above still from Sunset Boulevard as a template for your marriage announcement pics. Have your fiance float face first in the pool and you can stand over the ledge instead of a gaggle of reporters. Friends will admire your macabre sense-of-humor and, bonus, you can reuse the photo if the marriage tanks and you get divorced.
3. For the gossips: why recycle the latest Bennifer angle again at a cocktail party? The story behind Sunset Boulevard is full of murder and intrigue. Working this juicy backstory into your dishing of goss will give you a sheen of respectability.
Ok … So How Do I Find a Good Content Creator?
Looking to invest in digital content creation? Have a plan.
1. Determine Your Medium
Are you starting a podcast? Trying to create videos? What about blog posts? White papers or eBooks?
Whatever type of online content you want to create, find a content creator based on that. Need blog content? What about social media posts? Look for a content writer with experience with social media marketing and RSS.
2. Set a Budget
Figure out how much you can afford to pay for content creation. How much you pay a professional for creating content will depend on a number of factors:
● The scope of the project: This includes how big the project is. So if you need blog posts, think about how many you need. How many words will the posts be? Will it be an ongoing project? Or just a one-time thing?
● The type of content: Some content takes longer to create than other types. If you need a whitepaper or eBook, expect to pay more than you would pay for a blog post. And if you are looking for blog posts, you’ll likely pay extra for writers who can create a subscription list with an RSS feed.
● Skill level and experience: You can choose to hire a beginner or expert. Typically, the higher the skill level, the more you’ll pay. And you often get what you pay for, so look for a high-quality content creator. Hiring a writer with a bachelor’s degree in English, who has been featured in The New York Times, and has an impressive list of sample articles, will likely give you better results than someone with no credentials.
● The subject of the content: Some topics require way more research than others. So expect creators to charge more for technical subjects like technology and engineering.
3. Find out Where Content Creators Hang Out
Go wherever content creators spend their time. The thing is, a lot of successful content creators understand that they need to create their own content on top of the client work they do. It’s one of the best marketing strategies they can use to show off their work.
So you can find some of these talented folks on certain platforms, depending on the type of content they create:
You can also focus on communities where content creators hang out like Facebook or LinkedIn Groups. Content creators are constantly marketing their services in these groups. For instance, there are tons of freelance writing groups on Facebook. Writers are not only networking with other writers, but they’re also looking for clients in these groups.
Comb social media and YouTube videos for user generated content and media that you like. You can use the search functions on social networks like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram to find creators. Message the creator or brand and ask if they are interested in your project. Reach out to your LinkedIn network for introductions and referrals to content creators. You can also create listings on job boards. Be detailed in your job description in order to attract the best talent.
How Do I Become a Content Creator?
Maybe you don’t want to pay people for content creation. Or maybe you’re interested in joining the content creation field yourself. Whatever the case, you need a digital marketing strategy in order to become a successful content creator. Here’s the rundown:
Choose your medium(s): When creating content, which medium do you gravitate towards the most? Do you want to write blogs? Write product reviews? Do photography? Create a YouTube channel? Choose the medium that best serves your purposes. You might even choose more than one.
Choose your niche: Choose a niche that you’re interested in. Then, research the niche as much as you can. Learn your audience: You can’t create relevant, valuable content if you don’t know who your audience is. Be as detailed as possible so that you can create content that’s tailored to a specific audience. Research relevant topics and content ideas: Look up great ideas for topics and relevant industry news your audience may be interested in. If your chosen medium is writing, look at specific contexts. Let’s say your audience is into wellness. A good topic would be: “Five Habits to Increase Your Overall Wellness”. Make a content calendar: Using your curated list of topics, plan out when you’ll be delivering that content to your audience.
Use tools to optimize your content: If you’re writing, use SEO tools like Yoast and Chrome extensions to boost productivity. Create engaging content: Start creating content! Create valuable, bite-sized (attention spans are short these days) content that informs, engages, and/or entertains.
So you’re wondering how much does a content creator make? Well, that depends on a lot of things. In fact, it’s a broad range: $29k to $79k a year. How much you make will depend on your experience, how many clients you bring in, the type of content you create, and more.
Go Create Some Killer Content, or Better Yet, Get an Expert
You’ve looked at your email inbox and social media feeds. You hear about 6,000 TV shows that you MUST watch and just don’t have the time. Bottom line: there’s a boatload of people creating great content in today’s world. It’s critical that you hire someone who can craft content that gets and KEEPS your audience engaged. Creativity is key. If you’re still stuck, consider Content with Teeth. We’re ready for our close-up, Mr. DeMille! We have over 20 years of experience as content creators. Get in touch for a free consultation
The Venn diagram above shows the intersection of three characters from three classic movies centered on writers. Jack Torrance from The Shining can’t get past the blank page and an axe gets put through a door among other things. Barton Fink faces the blank page and ends up waking up to a bloody corpse in bed. Paul Sheldon from Misery meets his ultimate creepy superfan.
These three movies about writers all intersect in REDRUM. The message is clear. Writing is horror … WRITING IS MURDER!
Perhaps you have no phony angst about writing, just don’t have time for it or even dislike it and want to focus your energy on some other aspect of your business. Whatever your deal is, this post is a guide on how to do it yourself quickly and cheaply without mayhem and horror.
What is Blogging and Why Do You Need It?
The consultants, coaches and other assorted court jesters of the professional class tell you to pivot to video, carpet bomb social media, get nice with an influencer or buy a ton of expensive podcasting equipment that will collect dust in your office.
Is blogging even relevant? What is it exactly?
Simply put, blogging is the act of putting text, photographs, and other media on a self-published website. The act of publishing a personal blog post began as a way for individuals to update their audience on their daily lives using their free blogging sites with a free domain. However, business potential is what has taken blogging to greater heights via the self-hosted WordPress blog.
Blogging has evolved from simply putting up text with photographs, to using those media to promote brands or act as support for businesses and services. The growth has seen blogging become a part of content marketing.
INSERT AD BLOCKER HERE
Your own personal brand or business will absolutely benefit from having its own blog to enhance its digital marketing strategy as a whole. It is always advisable to use online ads to get to customers. However, the number of people using ad blockers has risen steadily over the years. It is now estimated that42% of internet users block ads.
When you think about it, ads cost a pretty penny, and the campaign will come to an end. That is the compelling reason to start a blog. In the long term, content marketingwill be cheaper in comparison to ads. This is especially true forevergreen content that will see users flocking to your website in search of answers and solutions.
How To Blog Without Killing Someone (Or Yourself)
Well, you’ve made up your mind to start a blog. That means you have to get web hosting and a custom domain on a blogging platform known as a content management system. You can start with free blogging platforms that have free hosting to get a feel of what it takes to run a successful blog.
The best way for you to start blogging on your own blogs is to install WordPress. Start with a free blog, and many WordPress hosting companies will automatically install WordPress and even hook you up with your own domain to use on your free WordPress site.
From here, you can use the free themes or a website builder to design a beautiful blog site, whether it is a news blog, a fashion blog, or a personal brand. You don’t need to be an expert in web design to start your blogging journey. With a good WordPress theme, just publish content consistently and engage positively with other bloggers.
The blogging community of your chosen niche, whether food blogs, travel or sports, can become a valuable asset. They can refer you to great blog hosts and offer great insights into your editorial calendar.
When you start blogging, you can make money online by selling ad space on your blog. By far the most popular ad service is Google AdSense. These ad services work best on news blogs such as The Wall Street Journal, since they tend to have more traffic, but you can still sell advertising space on a niche blog.
Before you develop your first blog post, consider this; whenever you are checking something on your favorite search engine, you will simply put in your query, and the search engine will do its best to give you results that match it. Why does that happen?
Research Keywords So People Will Find Your Posts
Keywords are the terms or phrases that people use when doing a search. If you want your content to be easily found, you will need to use keywords that relate to your content. Before you sit down to write, you should do some keyword research.
Traditional keyword tools can be quite costly. Luckily, there areaffordable alternatives. One such alternative is Neil Patel’s Ubersuggest. The best part is, Ubersuggest can show you the exact keywords you can use to rank quickly on search engine results pages.
Visit Ubersuggest and type in the keyword that you want to research. You will then get a report that lists a number of useful metrics. However, what’s important is the Keyword Ideas button on the left-hand navigation panel.
On the new page, just above the table, there is a Page 1 Ranking Potential button. Click that and enter your website’s domain. Ubersuggest will analyze your website and suggest to you the keywords you can use to easily get on page 1 of the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages).
Brainstorm by Talking Into a Transcription App
Once you have your keyword suggestions, it’s time to put your brain into search mode. This means coming up with creative content ideas to write about, and potential headings to use.
People get ideas in different ways. It can be while walking your dog, waiting in the drive through line or playing MINECRAFT. Brainstorming is a process that needs you to let go of your internal critic/editor and just fire whatever comes into your mind unfiltered.
You can use the REV app to dictate your babble. When it’s time to get down to business, you can then transcribe the formless ideas and get an outline or “angle” to turn your ravings into a blog post.
Structure the Brain Fart
Once you have the transcription, it’s time to attempt to give it a structure. For this, it would be best to get rid of all distractions. Feed the cat or dog and let the kids out to play. Schedule your spouse/lover for an appointment at the DMV, so they will be gone for hours.
Transcription in hand, structure your idea and then do a vomit draft.
“I like to have order. I like to know what my scene list is and have my tent posts that I want to try and hit. Then I do a vomit draft.”
The purpose of the “vomit draft” is to release the words or copy for the post as quickly as possible WITH ZERO EDITING. The idea here is not to be perfect or try to reword your lines or ape being a prestige author like Hemingway or Virginia Woolf. The point of the vomit draft is to get to the end of the damn post as quickly as possible. If you can’t think of a word, do not THINK or look something up. Insert an “x” or “—” and come back later when rewriting your formless vomit draft into a masterpiece.
Writing Is Rewriting
Writing or any creative effort is much easier when you have something to work with. Vomit draft on hand, you can turn your base prose into flowing poetry or just a string of words that describe why your product or service helps solve a problem of your audience.
You can use digital tools like Surfer SEO to help structure your vomit draft and make it rank quickly. Surfer SEO is widely hailed and loved for beingan affordable option.
Their Content Editor toolmakes things easier for you. Just start with picking the right keywords and creating a draft. From there, you can analyze your competitors to get a bearing on the kind of content you should come up with. Subsequently, Surfer SEO will provide you with metrics such as word count that you should aim for.
The content creation tool will also give you suggestions for terms and phrases to use. These words are picked directly from Google’s APIs, which means your content will become fully optimized for the terms that users rely on for accurate results.
Congrats! You Have a Finished Web Log With Minimal Drama
You did it! You finished the post without strangling your beloved cat or hubby. Writing isn’t so bad, is it?
If you put this post into practice and still find writing and blogging equivalent to the act of moving in Hades 24/7 or dragging a cold corpse through hell, just get in touch. We have ample experience and can sojourn said corpse on your behalf.
I bet you’ve come across cliques like ‘content is king’ in your recent online escapades. Or better yet, maybe you’ve heard ‘quality over quantity ‘ or ‘content strategy’ among many other content marketing buzzwords.
The truth is, while most people have an idea of what content marketing is, many find it hard to determine if content marketing is worth it. Before we get to whether content marketing adds any value to your business, let’s define it first.
What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing is the creation, sharing, and promotion of different media to attract, engage and retain clients. Compared to other forms of marketing, content marketing is an indirect promotion of a brand and its products.
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The main objective of content marketing is to stimulate interest in potential customers to learn more about your company. The media, aka the content used in content marketing, can include blog posts, video content, podcasts, email newsletters, and social media posts. If content marketing is the road to paradise, content is the signposts that give directions to la-la land.
That said, distributing valuable content is only aimed at a clearly defined audience. This can only happen after thorough research and the creation of buyer personas. Furthermore, content marketing only provides a positive ROI or online sales after consistent and strategic campaigns aimed at the target audience.
Is content marketing the same as inbound marketing?
Inbound marketing and content marketing are basically the same but often thought of differently, courtesy of industry jargon. Both have the goal of creating value for business prospects, attracting them, and finally, retaining clients. Content marketing, or should I say inbound marketing, does all the above subtly while providing solutions to potential clients. Inbound/content marketing will both involve a blog, video, podcast, infographic, SEO, and definitely lots of words. While most say that the two are different, they mean the same thing and have one common goal: Help the customer see the value of your business and how it solves their problems. This begs the question, are content marketing efforts worth it, or just hype and time waster?
Content marketing is effective
Yes, this is a bold statement, but there’s a ton of data from Demand Metric to support it.
Less expensive, more qualified leads
As per Demand Metric’s infographic, content marketing costs 62% less than any other marketing strategy. This can be attributed to the long-term returns of content marketing. For instance, creating an evergreen post that solves a reader’s need and ranks well on search engines will see you getting leads months after the publish date. Just because content marketing is cheaper doesn’t mean the results are awful. On average, content marketing gives you 3x as many leads compared to traditional marketing.
Go ye to where your customers are at
If that’s not enough for convincing, here’s another stat: 20% of internet users’ time is spent online reading content. Additionally, 57% of people read content marketing titles at least once a month. As the game of brand awareness shifts online, more than the traditional media, content marketing proves valuable. Not only do you get to show off your brand subtly, but you also get to help consumers with their questions, which increases brand recall. You wouldn’t easily forget someone that helped you in the past, would you?
Ads are not a customer favorite
While ads are effective to some extent, consumers don’t want nor tolerate them. By 2015, 200 million people were using ad blockers, and the number is expected to rise as privacy breaks the ceiling and rattles ad-dependent content marketers. Furthermore, 86% of people will skip adverts, and 70% will choose articles, any day, over paid advertising
Content Marketing is building relationships
On the flip side, 60% of people, after reading brand content, are inspired to seek out a product from the business. What’s more, 80% of people appreciate learning about a brand from custom content.
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These stats show that online content marketing, when done right, can hand you the consumer’s heart, loyalty, and brand advocacy. Interesting content takes the spot on why people choose to follow your business on social media, which leads us to the next point.
It’s not just about creating content and closing that chapter. It’s a game of consistency, and no matter how cliche it may sound, Quality over Quantity.
As Orbit Media reports, consistency in content marketing leads to better returns. The report shows that bloggers who intentionally pump time and effort into blogging do make money. Orbit Media is not alone in making this claim. HubSpot complements this truth with its own. The CRM company notes that blogs with 16 posts a month can expect to triple their website traffic.
As Brian Dean puts it, the more time spent creating content, the better the results. Consumer’s bar for quality is only going higher. The ultimate truth still remains — it takes time to create content that is useful and share-worthy.
To achieve this type of useful and share-worthy content, you need a content strategy. The beauty of a content strategy is how it leads to organic lead generation subsequent to compounding traffic.
Let’s see content marketing at work with the content marketing examples below.
Case study: Realtor’s content generates leads
John Garuti III is a Southwest Florida realtor who invested heavily in advertising to develop leads. He found Google Ads leads were weak and decided to pivot a content-driven strategy focusing on video and written content.
He developed a “lead magnet” or buyer’s guide for Babcock Ranch, the community he specializes in. He has earned 270 leads from this content thus far, including 6 in the last month.
We started working with John recently to generate content. We created a content marketing strategy and focused on the keywords that he was well-positioned to rank for quickly.
John is already in the first few pages of Google for this keyword and moving up quickly, as you can see.
Creative Content leads to even greater results
Remember the stats I shared above? One of them stated that 80% of people appreciate learning about a brand through custom content. For content to be custom and attractive to prospects, it needs to be creative content.
Take our client, Cloud Compliance Solutions, for instance. We got them started on HubSpot and kicked off several email campaigns that framed their services as a NASCAR pit crew.
IT professionals responded to the creative framing positively, and we achieved an email CTR of 5.2% (the average CTR of email campaigns is 2.6%).
Again, we have to admit that a content marketing campaign can be a whirlwind when you have other business operations to think about. However, the value content marketing brings to the table is undeniable. If you want to get the positive ROI content marketing is sure to give, schedule a free consultation with our content marketing team. We will develop a content marketing strategy, custom-tailored to your business needs.
Regarding our poor Boy Scout, consider the Yiddish proverb that states, “We plan, God laughs.”
We can all relate. You plan for a day at the beach. Pack the sunscreen. Make the sandwiches. Get there early to snag a parking spot only to have it start raining once you unpack the beach towels.
This post aims to save the noble Boy Scout and his plans.
We strive to give you a strategy to develop buyer personas by utilizing the largest business database in the world to develop an audience with data, not guesswork or “hunches.”
Our “plan” is not foolproof but will hopefully stand up to the Great Mystery who may be indifferent to human artifice and foibles.
Why Do I Need Buyer Personas?
Most startups and young businesses fail because their product or service doesn’t align with the marketplace. In other words, they didn’t adequately research if there was demand for their product or service before diving into creating the product and hawking it.
By generating buyer personas, you research who might buy from you and know the problems they encounter and that you can solve with your product or service.
So I Plan & People Buy, Right?
Adam Smith would approve of your intent to map buyer personas to ratchet up sales.
But how do you do it? What is the plan, Stan?
Let’s dive in with some actionable, step-by-step instruction. We start with the great marketer Herman Cain’s 5 x 5 x 5 Method.
Ask yourself what are 5 questions that 5 buyer persona are asking at 5 separate stages of a marketing funnel?
A marketing funnel is the journey the buyer takes from becoming aware of your product or service all the way to the narrow bottom section where they commit to buying from you.
The 5 stages of a funnel are:
So the 5 x 5 x 5 Method yields 125 total questions or subjects for content that you can produce to transform prospects into buyers.
My tweak to Herman Cain’s 5x5x5 Method (there is no doubt that the former presidential candidate and fast food Godfather created this strategy) is to amend questions with “pain points.”
Ask yourself what are the 5 problems your various buyers face from becoming aware of your product to actually buying it?
If you are introducing a product or service, you want to be a problem solver and address the issues that your target audience may have.
How to Develop a Buyer Persona
Enough with pizza politicians and instruments to imbibe fermented hops. How do you do specifically develop buyer personas?
If you have Sales Navigator, first click on the Sales Nav icon at the top right of your LinkedIn account. If you don’t have Sales Nav, stick with me. I promise to make it up to you at the end of this post.
Sales Navigator will open in another tab. The algorithm tracks your interactions on this platform and who is engaging with you. You can utilize the algo, specifically Recommended Leads, to see who might be an ideal audience.
In Sales Nav, click on “See all” under Recommended leads” in the top right portion of your screen:
This opens up 200 prospects “based on LinkedIn activity.” How do you exploit this list?
Simply scroll through the search results and look for prospects that look promising. At this point, let intuition guide you.
I scroll through my Recommended leads and see one prospect, Casey, who is co-Founder of Couchsurfing International.
Someone who helms an organization dedicated to couchsurfing is an ideal prospect for Content with Teeth. I click on the prospect’s name to view his Sales Nav profile more closely.
I examine the profile closely for cues like title and geography. Casey is/has been a Co-Founder, CEO and Founder. He is in the Bay Area. Under highlights, I can see that he is a second-degree connection. In other words, he knows people I am connected to. In this case, I look under Highlights and see we are both connected to nine mutuals.
If I wanted to connect with Casey, I could mention one of these people or ask them to introduce Casey to me.
It’s helpful to look up the target directly on LinkedIn to see other data.
Click on the three horizontal dots at the top right of the screen.
Select “View on LinkedIn.com” in the dropdown and the prospect’s profile will open up in another tab.
From here, I can see Casey’s full experience.
I right click on Casey’s company “Couchsurfing International” and select “Open link in new tab” where I see company details such as industry and employee headcount under the About tab.
I know Couchsurfing International has under 100 employees and is an Internet company. More importantly, I see that the organization is funded. Regarding “Company size,” this is self-reported by whoever created the LinkedIn company page initially.
Know that these numbers are not iron-clad and based on hard data. Despite this, from snooping around LinkedIn and Sales Navigator, I have a greater idea who LinkedIn’s algo thinks is a good match for me.
I don’t stop with just employee headcount and industry. I scroll to the bottom of Casey’s LinkedIn profile to view his Interests.
I click on the See All button and view Influencer and Companies that Casey follows. I am particularly interested in Group that he belongs to. I click this tab.
LinkedIn Groups are a key resource. I could join one of these and meet other prospects similar to Casey. As a group member, I have the ability to message other members without being directly connected to them as a first-degree or existing connection.
We will discuss utilizing LinkedIn groups to develop a content marketing strategy in a future post. Stay tuned!
Rinse & Repeat
I click back to my Sales Nav search and “rinse and repeat” this process with other promising targets. From just the first page alone, I see that 13 of the 25 prospects that Sales Nav recommends are in San Francisco. I look up other suggested leads and see what LinkedIn Groups they belong to and whether any overlap with Casey’s.
From a rudimentary glance at just the first page of results, I see that I might want to target Silicon Valley. Even though my company is based in Southwest Florida, my reach isn’t geo-limited to Florida or the Southeast United States. As a creative content agency, I can do business anywhere and might want to focus on Internet companies, primarily in San Francisco and the Bay Area.
From viewing LinkedIn recommended leads, I have a greater idea of what titles in what industry and company size to target in what geographic area. If I play around with this, I will have greater idea what to fill in the HubSpot Buyer Persona generator to generate my potential customer audience.
Utilize Existing LinkedIn Connections to Further Research Ideal Buyer Personas
You don’t have to go just by LinkedIn’s recommended leads. You can use the advanced filtering in Sales Navigator to see who looks promising in your existing or first-degree connections.
In the Sales Navigator home screen, click the Lead filters + bubble.
In the next screen, filter your search by selecting “1st Degree Connections” in the “Relationship” box.
This will bring up your existing connections. This brings up 5k prospects. I use the filter to make the list more manageable. Under “Industry,” I type in “Internet” based on what I saw above from Casey and LinkedIn’s other suggested leads.
Now I have a smaller audience of people I am ALREADY connected with where I can scroll through the search and examine shared parameters like I did above.
Utilize Sales Navigator Account Filters to Further Shape Ideal Buyer Personas
You might be starting out and not have a big network. You can research new blood in Sales Navigator, and more importantly, focus on companies that are in high growth mode.
In the Sales Navigator home screen, I click on the “Account filters +” bubble.
This brings up Account filters.
I want to focus on smaller companies that are in high-growth mode with a growing employee count and surging revenue.
First, I select a revenue range of $1-10 million.
Next, I select a “Company headcount growth” between 5-40%.
This brings up nearly half a million companies, so I use the Company headcount and Geography filters to restrict my list. I search for Bay Area companies, Oakland specifically, that have between 11-50 employees.
This give me a list of 249 companies, something more targeted and manageable to work with.
I scroll and see Opera Event, an organization of social media content creators.
I have been successful getting work by partnering with other marketing companies, so I decide to investigate further. I click on “View All Employees”. I find the CEO, Brandon. I view his profile in LinkedIn.
From reading his About section, I find a potential buyer persona – CEOs and Founders in high-growth startups in the tech sector.
I examine the Opera Event LinkedIn company page. I go to the Insights tab where I see the startup is in high growth mode – 44% in 2 years.
10 Minutes & I Know More About Whom Might Buy From Me
In just 10 minutes playing with Sales Navigator, I have a better idea of parameters like title, geography, industry and other factors to plug into HubSpot’s buyer personas generator to develop my audience.
A 10 minute investment on LinkedIn makes you a bulletproof Boy Scout who can yield buyer personas despite a wrathful God.
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I hear your cries of protestation! You don’t have Sales Navigator. I feel you. It ain’t cheap at $80/month if you pay monthly. You can sign up for Sales Navigator inside LinkedIn and get one free month.
I have a better deal where I can get you TWO months free of LinkedIn Sales Navigator. Two months free will give you enough time to try out Sales Nav to not only build your buyer personas but also do active lead generation and engage potential prospects. You can then decide whether you want to pay for it.
If you would like to hit me up for two months free of Sales Navigator, let’s chat.
I recently pitched a company who was unhappy with their SEO provider. The vendor was making the company pay for the fancy SEO software themselves and requiring the client to write and optimize their own content.
This is the inverse of Done-For-You marketing where you pay someone to tell you to do the work.
The advantage of DFY Marketing is basically a time shift.
You outsource and receive much needed time to concentrate on some other aspect of your business than being a part-time marketer. You could go on vacay with the family where you RV to the Clown Motel on your way to Vegas. Or you could pull an all nighter becoming a real estate magnate on the Monopoly app game.
No judgement … hire us or another content provider and do as you wish with the time that we save you.
The benefit of DIY digital marketing is that you save money you would otherwise pay a freelancer or agency like us.
The barometer is how mature your organization is. If you have resources and value your time, you may want to pursue Done-For-You services. If you are still on the Baby Boss spectrum of corporate titanhood, then you can go at it yourself as a business owner and continue to burn the candle at both ends.
What Are Done-For-You Marketing Services?
Via CWT, Tyla & Transparent PNG Images For Free
When it comes to content writing, you can hire someone else to crank out original website, advertising and social media copy.
You could do it yourself but trust an American writer who wrote numerous short stories, books, essays and memoirs. This same author won numerous literary awards, had one of his books made into a Hollywood blockbuster with prestige thespian du jour Meryl Streep and was even made Commander of the Legion of Honor by a French President who commissioned the pyramid-glass deal in front of the museum where you can see bros drinking beer and trying to make the Mona Lisa smile.
William Styron did, indeed, have swag and once famously said, “Let’s face it, writing is hell.”
I Saw Your LinkedIn Profile & You’re Special. Now Buy Something From Me.
Stop spamming people on the best resource for B2B online.
Copying and pasting the same dried up script is not how you catch other businesses’ attention. Hire a professional that will not only craft messaging scripts that command attention but create an entire content package for a personal blog and social media that will brand you as an expert in your industry that can “help” prospects, not “sell them.”
Utilize a digital marketing service that helps devise a tailored marketing strategy and raises your personal brand and authority through effective content.
Tips on Finding DFY
Via CWT & Air Mail
Content writing is not creative writing. You need to be both creative and analytical (research keywords etc). If you hire a poet to do a blog piece, they may get you beautiful words that no one reads because it is not optimized for SEO.
However, if you get your copy automated, the content will be too generic and not glue readers’ eyeballs to the screen. A professional digital marketing agency with a fresh marketing strategy can help you strike the perfect balance between creativity and analytics.
Bro, I GOT Video. My Feng-Shui Consultant’s Au Pair Knows Spielberg.
Via CWT & Las Vegas Review-Journal
When outsourcing video production, ask to see a freelancer’s work. If they don’t have a “sizzle reel” or YouTube/Vimeo portfolio, be wary. Any good video producer will want to have their best work front and center.
Ask to see a list of equipment they have and if they plan on investing in gear just for your shoot. If they are shooting an interview with you on camera and they don’t have a makeshift teleprompter, even a tablet with a teleprompter app on it, be wary. Before doing an interview, ask them if they need to get a “B roll.” If they don’t know what that is, then consider hiring someone that has a clue.
I Hope This LinkedIn Bot Finds You Well
When it comes to LinkedIn marketing, does the freelancer or agency rely on automation? LinkedIn is hammering people who use scrapers and automation to connect and message with people online. Yeah, you can pay $10 a month for a bot to blast out messages to prospects, but what happens when LinkedIn shuts down your account for breaking their service agreement that strictly prohibits automation? Avoid this conflict by paying for a professional marketing team to help build relationships with potential customers through original, engaging social media content.
Can We Create a Mid Funnel of SQLs Who Convert at a Low CPA?
If they can’t describe what they will do for you clearly and concisely, then they are trying to disorient you to try and justify their fee, i.e. con you.
At Content With Teeth, our quality content matches the cost. Just like with any aspect of your business, creating a digital marketing strategy is an investment. Small business owners often try saving money, but when it comes to marketing, lower costs will get you a reused blog post and cliché email marketing copy. We provide content creation but can help track analytics via Google, HubSpot and other digital tools to see if you are “ROI-positive.”
We’re In The Space Age Of Marketing
You can talk to an audio device and book a reservation at a restaurant. You can skate just above the ocean on a board on the 4th of July while holding an American flag like the Facebook guy. The Jetsons age is here!
Get DFY marketing and remove the headache of doing everything yourself. Focus the time saved on being a part-time marketer on increasing sales and earn enough dough to launch yourself into space like George Jetson or the Amazon dude or the Tesla dude or the Virgin Group dude or the ….
If you just want help in a marketing campaign or with content creation and don’t aspire to be a gazillionaire tech d-bag, definitely reach out and say hello.
Content creation is the assembly line of written and/or visual media to disseminate a message about a brand to generate interest among a target audience.
Content creation is usually produced by a company’s in-house marketing team or outsourced to an agency that works on a retainer or per-project basis. Your content should appeal to your buyer persona, making information accessible to your audience through blog posts, e-books, videos or social media posts.
Content Creation vs. Content Curation
Content curation is the act of searching for, gathering, and presenting digital content for a specific subject matter. Unlike content creation, content curation does not include original content but rather assembles different content from a variety of sources.
Let’s look at one of the fastest growing companies in the last decade, Netflix. Initially, they were content curators boasting a wide lineup of TV shows and movies from other studios.
In 2013, Netflix became content creators producing their own TV series House of Cards. Netflix now owns household staples such as Stranger Things, Big Mouth, and Black Mirror, proving that content creation is valuable as this investor details:
Doing a comparable comps valuation to other publicly traded movie and entertainment companies reveal that Netflix has a P/S multiple that is valued more than 3 times more than the valuation of traditional media companies
It may be better to own than rent, but content doesn’t create itself. Content creation teams must be creative AND analytical, understanding the importance of impactful raw data such as keyword research and SEO.
Myth Of The Crazy Artist
You want a content creation team that is a little crazy just as long as the Account Rep doesn’t remove an ear in front of the client.
Original content requires the cliqued corporate maxim of thinking “outside the box.” When you hire a content creator, you’re probably thinking “how do I generate awareness for my product or service” rather than “how do I get this guy to paint the sunflowers instead of downing the absinthe?”
Whatever the goal, people creating things have hatched a “crazy artist” myth that stretches back infamously to Van Gogh infamously, if not earlier. When hiring a content creation team, a little crazy is good but they need to be blessed with a numbers-based approach
In other words, to create unique online content that people can actually find, you need to be creative AND analytical.
For one of our clients, LeBlond Ltd, a Cincinnati-based manufacturing firm, CWT has blogged for them for nearly ten years and the numbers show the content consistently performs.
Numbers Never Lie
For a 30-day period (May 31 – June 29, 2021), the blog content created by CWT has ranked in 6 of the top 10 most visited pages on our client’s site.
The blog content has a high average duration (2.07 minutes). Average session duration illustrates how long users stay on your site. It’s a useful metric for indicating engagement and the true value of your site’s content as time is a human’s most valuable resource (time is money, amiright?)
Although 2-3 minutes seems like a blur in the day, this is a solid session duration for most sites. Two minutes is enough time for users to read content and interact with your website.
The blog posts also average a lower bounce rate (45.34%) than the other pages in the Top 10 traffic list. What exactly does this mean?
“One and Done” Isn’t Just Five-Star Basketball Recruits
Have you ever gone to a movie that was so awful you walked out mid-movie? A “bounce” (often called a single-page session) is essentially the same. It’s when a “one-and-done” user lands on a site and exits without interacting or triggering another request. Bounce rate is a metric used to track single-page sessions. Research shows any bounce rate under 50% is considered to be really solid.
Finally, blog content creates leads. One example is this piece that is eight years old and is evergreen content with over 30 comments, mostly from machinists wanting parts. Those are leads solely from comments left on the post!
Are You Linsanity or Can You Score Over 40 Consistently?
Some might say a 30-day period is a small sample size, however, in Quarters 1 and 2 of 2021, 4 of the top 10 pages with the most traffic for LeBlond are blog posts that CWT produced. This is a 6-month period in which nearly half the top 10 pages are from blog content.
The numbers don’t lie. Our blogs produce more traffic and yield high results on a consistent basis.
The blog posts have a higher average duration (2.19 minutes) with a lower average bounce rate (60.24%) than the other high-traffic pages. In other words, prospects are viewing these pages longer and checking out other content on the site than the other non-blog pages.
Finding The Right Production Crew
We mentioned Netflix earlier. In hiring content creators, you want a team that can take the process from inception to completion or in film/tv talk, from pre-production to post-production.
Pre-Production in Film/TV: writing the script and budgeting
Post-Production: editing and scoring
We can use the same process used to produce stuff you consume on a screen and apply it to your content creation process.
Pre-Production Analysis & Content Development
Via CWT & TODAY
At Content With Teeth, we start with pre-production. This is where we do some in-depth brainstorming to help create a content strategy. Some ideas will be stronger when presented as visual content (videos, infographics, etc.) while other pieces may be suited for text. Either way, we’ll work collaboratively to deliver you amazing content.
We don’t stop there. After devising your content, we help distribute it. If you’re B2B, we might recommend a LinkedIn marketing campaign to disseminate your content on the world’s largest business database. We might use other social media platforms to promote the content like Instagram or Twitter.
Record the Score to Analytics in Post
Via CWT, Premium Beat & HubSpot
Now, this is where the analytics come into play. Most content creators will throw some copy your way and call it a night. We go past production to post-production and help measure important analytics and metrics to see what’s working.
We’re an official HubSpot partner and have the means to ensure your content reaches the right audiences, achieves your business goals, and generates organic traffic. We use analytical tools like HubSpot Analytics, Google Analytics, and MonsterInsights to do this.
With our model, we not only PRODUCE the content but DISTRIBUTE it (LinkedIn marketing, HubSpot email campaigns, social media, etc) and MEASURE it in “post-production” to inform you what is working and what is not.
Lust For Life AND Numbers
Via Anna Kester from Pexels, PNGEgg & CWT
A good content creation team should have a “lust for life” and a “lust for numbers.” A good mix of Left + Right brain stuff. Mixing the creativity of an “outside-the-box” creator like Van Gogh with the analytical skills of a number-crunching savant is the key to optimizing your content creation process and producing high-quality content. Reach out to us if you need a content creator excelling in both brain swim lanes.