The Point

Archive for the ‘Content marketing’ Category

Nov

Copywriter vs. Content Writer: Skills, Writing Fees and Expectations

copywriter-vs-content-writer-1

Need content? You could enlist the services of a content writer. It probably won’t hurt a bit. But it probably won’t help either.

Given the immense demand for content, millions of freelancers, small agencies and writer brokerages have crawled out of the woodwork to offer cheap, quick-turn content writing services.

The writing they deliver seldom accomplishes much as measured by marketing objectives, but no one’s guilty of anything. The client placed an order for content. The vendor delivered it. End of story?

Yes, usually that’s the story in its entirety. However, it’s just the beginning of this one. You see, I wrote this article to answer questions I often get when asked to quote writing fees by prospects and new clients for creating content.

To simplify, it usually amounts to: copywriter vs. content writer—what’s the difference? However, it may not be quite that simple. A number of posts have been written as attempts to tackle the question. Usually, they say something like:

  • A copywriter writes ads or marketing material to sell products and services or raise brand awareness.
  • A content writer writes educational content without promotional messages.

I’m not close to satisfied with this overly polarized answer. You might have some noble goals in mind for your content marketing, but it’s not a public service. You do it for the reasons listed above in the copywriter definition. Those reasons are marketing objectives and to accomplish them you need a copywriter—and more—someone with marketing skills.

What an average web content writer does

An average content writer for the web writes content, usually blog posts. As you might expect, the writing’s usually average.

Average content writing fees: < $100.

Average research: 10 – 20 minutes.

Average marketing experience: Minimal.

Average results: Words on a page. Zero links. Zero traffic generation. Zero conversion. Zero sales. (Read more about how most content badly underperforms in research published by Buzzsumo and Moz.)

You can probably guess the number of reasons I can think of to hire an average content writer.

(more…)

Oct

You Can Use Content Marketing to Grow (Even in a Boring Business)

Content marketing boring industries

By now you’ve heard all the reasons why you should be utilizing content marketing to grow your business: it’s scalable, provides a high ROI and allows you to provide helpful information to your target audience (which gains their trust).

However, most people think they have to be in a “sexy” industry such as entertainment or travel to create content worth marketing to your demographic. That’s not true. Content marketing can be leveraged by businesses, big or small, in any industry.

This is a guest post by Dan Scalco of Digitalux.

Here are some tips to help you start using content marketing even if you’re in a “boring” industry. (more…)

Oct

Smart Strategies for Effective Blog Design [Content Matters Episode 19]

Content Matters episode 19

At the top of the episode, I say, “Make reading your blog a chore or a bore and it’s bye-bye baby.”

Listen to this edition of Content Matters to pick up a long list of tips you can easily apply to design a more attractive and reader-friendly blog and get more from your content marketing efforts. 

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Oct

Digital Marketing Failure: Why the Glass is Half Empty

digital marketing failure

Creating content is a huge part of your digital marketing, yet most of it’s a waste of time.

Ouch. Why?

Did you catch the “Content, Shares and Links” study from Buzzsumo and Moz? It examined 1-million blog posts. Two alarming findings include:

  • Over 50% of posts earned 2 or less Facebook interactions
  • Over 75% achieved zero external links

The report’s author, Steve Rayson, writes, “The majority of content published on the Internet is simply ignored when it comes to shares and links. The data suggests most content is simply not worthy of sharing or linking, and also that people are very poor at amplifying content. It may sound harsh but it seems most people are wasting their time either producing poor content or failing to amplify it.”

Once more for emphasis: most people are wasting their time.

That is harsh—and definitely worth trouble-shooting. It seems safe to say the factors behind unsuccessful digital marketing campaigns can be vast. In this post, I’m going to explore the reasons that stand out to me, especially on the content marketing frontier where so much time is invested. (more…)

Sep

Finding Topics for Your Blog and Content [Content Matters Episode 17]

Content Matters episode-17

In the course of the episode, Andy explains, “Whatever people want to know—that’s what you need to publish.” It might not be immediately obvious to you what your audience wants to know, but after listening to this episode you’ll have a complete bag of tricks for finding the ideal content for your blog and website.

In this episode we talk about:

  • Why you shouldn’t avoid popular topics
  • The secret to finding the topics that are being shared on social media
  • Simple keyword research tools that overflow with ideas
  • The sites that make it easy to uncover the questions people ask about your field of expertise
  • How to mine your analytics and onsite search for topic ideas
  • The many ways to “listen” and learn from your prospects and peers
  • How to extract content ideas from books, courses, and Wikipedia
  • The answer file that lives in your sent mail
  • How events and original research serve you some of the best possible content ideas

original-topics
What can you learn from these studs?
Listen this episode for a fun tip from the world of traditional publishing.

In the cheese & mousetrap segment:

  • Barry explains how to make great content from roundup posts somebody else created.
  • Andy suggests you can plug every possible “hole in your bucket” by adding a live chat feature to your website.

On the next episode of Content Matters:
What to put on your homepage

Content Matters on iTunes

Listen to any or all of the Content Matters podcast episodes andshare your thoughts about the program on iTunes. 

Aug

The Business Blogging Plan: 50 Best Practices

50 best practices

I must admit: I’m a latecomer to business blogging. I joined the party in 2011 and got off to a rocky start. Nearly all bloggers do.

Five years later, I know what works. I’m working the strategies to great effect—on my website, for a long list of top marketing blogs, and for many clients. And regardless of where you are in your business blogging journey, I believe this collection of ideas will help you publish an even more effective business blog.

Here, now, are my top ideas organized as 50 best practices. But first…

I present a quick history of business blogging from the historical point of view of yours truly. And then… Grabba’ cuppa’ something tasty and enjoy The Business Blogging Plan.

a brief history of business blogging

Here you go… 
The Business Blogging Plan:  50 Best Practices

(more…)

Aug

The Ingredients of Great Written Content [Content Matters Episode 16]

Great Written Content Content Matters

If your written content isn’t great, it accomplishes very little, or nothing.

In this episode, Andy and Barry talk you through the 14 ingredients you need to pour into your content, so it hits the mark and accomplishes your marketing objectives.

In this episode we talk about:

  • Each of the 14 important ingredients in the nutritional label below
  • Ways to apply the ingredient in your written content
  • How to make your written content original—even when it’s about a common topic

(more…)

Aug

20 Ideas for Your Website Homepage Content [Infographic]

ideas for website homepage

Planning, creating, and publishing website homepage content is no walk in the park. In fact, it presents the most difficult—and important—decisions a digital marketer must make.

Everyone seems to want to know the exact formula for getting it right. But no such formula exists. So the process of getting homepage content published often paralyzes marketers big and small, experienced and novice.

I have the “What should I put on my homepage?” conversation with clients nearly every day. The answer could be:

(a) Content that best positions your company as the solution to a specific problem

(b) Content prospective buyers are looking for

(c) Both of the above

Clearly, (c) is the optimum answer. If your website’s homepage is doing its job effectively it guides visitors one step deeper into your website. Better yet, it guides the right visitors to the next page, or the content they seek.

See, your homepage, your content, and your marketing in general, shouldn’t aim to engage everyone. Though it may seem counter-intuitive, it should deflect the wrong people. Your conversion depends on engaging the right people, right?

This website homepage content checklist should help

Your homepage content options are many. After consulting with a ton of clients about their homepage strategies, I decided to create a checklist of 20 ideas—a planning tool. (more…)

Aug

Should You Call Yourself an Author [Content Matters Episode 15]

Content Matters - Author

Your domain is defined as your “sphere of knowledge.” You can own your domain and stand out as an authority by authoring a book.

Yes indeed, there’s a lot of hard work involved. However, the rules have changed and a traditional book is not your only option.

In this episode, Andy and Barry explore a variety of options for adding “author” to your bio and resume and the benefits of doing so.

In this episode we talk about:

  • Has it become “easier” to author a book?
  • The benefits of adding “author” to your bio and additional ways to showcase your author status
  • Various ways to fast-track your authorship journey
  • A process and plan for blogging a book
  • Leveraging authorship for speaking and networking opportunities
  • How to use book and speaker pages for SEO

(more…)

Jul

Why Content Marketers Must Understand Domain Authority

Copy of Episode 13

The content marketing planets aligned when your hosts, Andy and Barry, selected theme music for our program written and recorded by our friend (and content astronaut) Robert Rose.

The groove of the tune was the reason it worked for us, but if you listen closely, you hear a vocal loop Robert uses with a female singing, “It’s gonna’ take a little time.”

She might have been rapping about content marketing. Or search. Or building “domain authority” (DA).

We’re riffing on these things in this episode with a focus on the increasingly important measure of domain authority. Andy’s published answers to common questions about DA on the Orbit Media blog and now his extensive knowledge on the topic is ready to be fed directly to your ear drums.


 

Tune in for 22 minutes to learn:

  • What is domain authority (DA)?
  • How’s it compare to Google’s PageRank metric?
  • What’s page authority (PA)?
  • Which one matters more for keyword research, DA or PA?
  • How measure the value of a link from another website to inform your planning process
  • Must-do techniques to increase your domain authority (and the magnetic power of your website)

(more…)