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Mark Traphagen of Stone Temple Consulting is a pillar of the speaking circuit and regularly does videos and blog posts about SEO. He always has helpful insights and actionable steps for marketers to better their content and make it appealing to both the search engines and the users.
I had a chance to interview Mark before our last SEJ Summit SEO conference of 2023, happening November 2nd in New York City. Check out his answers below:Your SEJ Summit Presentation is about creating content that is also SEO and brand friendly. This is an area many brands seem to struggle in. Why do you think that is?
Brand content tends to be created with either SEO or reputation/brand-enhancement in mind, but rarely with both, as if they were mutually exclusive. It’s difficult to say why that happens in all cases, but in our experience with larger brands, it’s often a result of who has ownership of the content, and what their goals are.
It is possible, though, and we believe most desirable, to create content that both helps build SEO while at the same time creating real value for actual users of the site.SEO and content marketing seem to be pitted against each other. What are the benefits of the two disciplines working together?
As I said in the previous answer, which of those is emphasized seems to depend upon who within the company (or which department) has ownership of the content. The sad irony is that there’s increasing evidence that high-quality content that does a good job of fully serving user needs actually enhances SEO, so there’s obviously benefit in bringing the disciplines (SEO and content creation) together.
For that reason, at Stone Temple we work hard to raise the vision of our clients for what content can do, and to support them in “selling” to their companies that higher vision.I love the story of your start in digital marketing. You worked at an indie bookstore who was losing money due to Amazon and your boss pretty much said “Figure this out.” Over the years, what changes in our field surprised you the most?
My biggest surprise over the years has actually also been my biggest delight. When I was “inventing online marketing” (or so I thought!) for that small store, I thought at first that it was all a matter of learning a set of tricks. But I discovered that doing real marketing, the best stuff that always worked even before digital, actually enhanced and strengthened my SEO and e-commerce efforts. To my surprise and delight, because of the increasing sophistication of Google, those practices actually scale up to the huge brands that Stone Temple works with today.
Let me provide a couple of concrete examples from my bookstore marketing days:
Our store served a pretty geeky culture, people who were really into the kind of books we specialized in. In those pre-social-media days, bloggers ruled as far as influence, and we came to realize that a lot of our potential customers discovered new books via popular book review bloggers. So we reached out to those bloggers, building great relationships with many of them, resulting in them recommending and even linking to our store in their reviews. They came to love us because they realized we truly loved the books they and their readers loved, and that love fest resulted in a big jump in traffic and sales for our store.
The next step was nurturing a sense of community amongst our customers by creating a way for them to become qualified reviewers on our site, which led to many of them becoming mini-celebrities in our niche. We made heroes of our customers, and gained a lot of valuable user-generated content along the way.
Those early lessons have never left me. It’s why Eric Enge and I constantly preach that SEO and content are never stand-alones; to be successful they must be part of a complete marketing ecosystem.It seems like content marketing is now starting to mature as a field, where do you think the future of content marketing is heading? What can we expect in the next 5 or 10 years?
I don’t think the emphasis on the importance of content will ever go away now. From the SEO perspective, it’s become obvious that search engines place increasing importance on the quality and usefulness of a site’s content. My hope, though, as I stated above, is that more and more companies will adopt a more holistic view of content, and realize that not only are SEO and traditional marketing goals for content not at odds, but they are most successful when they are in cooperation.In your opinion, what is the number one under appreciated skill a digital marketer needs to succeed in 2023?
Without a doubt, it’s learning the fundamentals of traditional marketing. I’ll be the first to admit that I have big gaps in my own background in that area. The good news is that you can self-educate in marketing these days, if you’re diligent in uncovering the best information sources and dedicated to putting in the effort. I’m investing significant time into my own marketing education these days.
I still am thankful for my “thrown into the deep end of the pool” introduction to digital marketing. I learned a lot because I had to, and I honed those skills in the real battlefield of high-competition marketing. Now it’s time to “grow up” and dig deep into the accumulated wisdom of marketing that goes beyond technical SEO skills or the ability to create great content.Great insight, Mark. It is always a learning game. Thanks for answering my questions. See you in NYC!
Don’t forget; you can still buy tickets and come see us in NYC Nov. 2nd at the TimesCenter in Manhattan.
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How agencies can provide clients with an integrated service given the increasing connection between brand, content marketing and SEO
After a couple of years of travelling and lifestyle consulting, I returned to the UK in 2012 with the goal of setting up a digital agency. I knew I wanted us to be very hands on and do transformative work with a limited number of clients I loved working with. But beyond that, I wasn’t sure what service I needed to create to do this!
It has taken me a year to work this out. But I’m there now and I’m inspired and it’s a journey of discovery I am keen to share.First Steps: Recognising key developments in SEO and social media
I started this journey as a big believer in SEO having driven 50% of first business’s traffic Easyodds through natural search from 2005 – 2010. In the two years I’d been away from the UK though, the world of SEO had changed. The recent Google Panda and Penguin algorithm updates had led to major penalties for low quality links and content. What’s more it was clear that this was not a one-off as algorithmic updates were being announced on a weekly basis.
So high quality content was a must for SEO. But not just for SEO.
In the 2 years I was away social media usage had continued to rocket and Twitter in particular had started to mature as a content marketing platform. Various surveys and articles were telling me that over half of social media activity involved content sharing. What’s more as Google was on the hunt for new and improved data to verify quality and relevance, I thought social data must surely become a key part of its algorithmic ranking decisions at some point.
What better way to identify quality content than to measure relevant sharing and engagement levels as well as backlinks? So high quality content could lead to independent traffic and that traffic in turn could lead to better long term search results.
So now I knew that my service had to merge SEO with social media using high quality, targeted content as the binding ingredient. I believed this could also lead to long term stability. While natural search remained a monster short term line of traffic, Google was increasingly starting to fill its pages with its own products and data.
The launch of Google Knowledge graph, a potential Wikipedia killer seemed a giant leap further towards Google-owned search results. Likewise the social media giants of 2010 remained widely used but the marketplace was still evolving as the massive growth in Pinterest usage proved. But within that environment of change, creating great content and inspiring and engaging a targeted relevant audience – that seemed to be timeless marketing craft and as future proof as any service I could conceive.Discovering the Brand Connection
Using their internal marketing data, we were able to identify some big additional natural search opportunities.
However once this work was complete, we discovered that there would be a negative brand impact from associating Borro with pawnbrokers which in turn created a reticence to strongly promote the directory. Although this is something we are still working on together and developing, the potential impact of our work in the early stages was diluted.
Great content may be the key to SEO and social media success but without full brand buy-in, great content can not prosper.The Power of Brand Purpose and Passion
We spent time exploring the brand values that the founding team was implanting into the DNA of the new company and the passions that had caused them to create the business.
The fact that we were working so directly with the founders at such an early stage was very helpful in drawing these ideas out quickly and authentically.
Excited by this experience, we started to focus attention in other client work to discovering a brand’s core purpose and passion. The results were amazing.
Finding this core inspiration was like content strategy gold.
Now I’ve experienced this, it makes sense. To succeed with the mission of creating shareable, relevant content, one must find themes related to a company that are not self serving and that its people are passionate enough about to get involved in an authentic dialogue. This is made possible by tearing back the layers of every day activity and delving deeper into a Company to find its core purpose because at the heart of most brands is a passion that originates from something deeper than just making money.
These ideas are beautifully expressed by Simon Sinek in his brilliant TED talk. He talks about how focusing on ‘The Why’, the passion and purpose of a company, has been so instrumental to Apple’s success. He frequently repeats his mantra ‘people don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it’. Applying this to our service, we have discovered that finding ‘the why’ makes content strategy easy and effective.Conclusion of connection brand, content marketing and SEO
As I said at the start of this blog, our core purpose is to do transformative work with a limited number of clients we love working with. It has taken a year of discovery to get to a service we feel confident can help us achieve our goals. It may take another year to test and refine our theories but are greatly looking forward to this next part of our journey.
GinzaMetrics, one of the more comprehensive Enterprise SEO dashboards out there, has undergone a a pretty large feature makeover, adding new features along with improved usability and speed.
In a another sign that the SEO industry is becoming more and more about content, digital and social media marketing, GinzaMetrics made the changes with an eye toward not only delivering recommendations for site structure improvements and the like, but for optimizing content marketing too. This comes a week after Moz changed their name and started focusing on analytics.
“The search and content marketing landscape is evolving quickly, and a healthy mix of data and creativity are required if you want to thrive,” said Ray Grieselhuber, CEO of GinzaMetrics. “We are thrilled to be a part of this revolution by helping our customers and agency partners discover the best content to create and optimize.”
The newly designed dashboard provides faster access to SEO and content recommendations. Users can spot the keywords that their content is ranking best for, as well as the content that is performing best or worst in search. This helps users make better decisions and reach a maximum target audience. It’s kind of a “to-do” list for web optimization.
“This new release includes a number of updates based on user feedback, and it’s aimed at making the consumer experience more enjoyable with the brands they engage,” Grieselhuber said.
One new feature helps users see problems in the internal structure of their sites. “Page Indexing and Internal Links Insights” provides recommendations across large websites and builds up graphs of internal links. The tool helps users see which pages have optimized links and which sections need improvements, such as HTTP errors, improper redirects and duplicate page titles.
“The ability to crawl a new site and quickly find duplicate page titles, HTTP errors, redirects and other issues in a prioritized, logical way, has long been a missing feature in enterprise level, cloud-based SEO platforms,” said Erin Robbins O’Brien, GinzaMetrics COO. “It will reduce the need to rely on additional platforms to access this relevant information, helping users save time and money.”
GinzaMetrics is one in a competitive field of SEO and content marketing analytics companies that continue to find users and raise millions of dollars. Some of Ginza’s top rivals include Brightedge and Conductor.
GinzaMetrics also offers competitor analysis so users can see how their keywords and social signals stack up with the competition. It lets users see shifts in their rivals’ search and content strategies. GinzaMetrics is also the only platform that crawls this information daily from search engines including Google, Bing, Yahoo, Yandex , Baidu, Sogou, and others. Those last two were added in April. The platform lets you customize stats by date range, search engine(s), keywords and more. You can also white-label the reports and the dashboard itself.
GinzaMetrics was founded in 2010 by Grieselhuber. Shortly after the company attracted seed funding from both Y Combinator and 500 Startups, a somewhat rare occurrence. The tool provides its features in more than 120 countries and 55 languages around the world.
You have put in huge efforts to create high-quality, relevant, and informative content. After thoroughly researching market demands, you have optimized your pages and articles using targeted keywords. What’s more, your content marketing team is also working hard to update your web pages regularly to rank higher on search engine results. Keep it up; you are doing a great job!
However, listen up! Are you sure your content marketing strategies are generating the expected results? Are your content marketing campaigns doing better and producing the desired ROI? Do you even track how well your campaigns are performing? What are you even trying to achieve from your content strategies in the first place?
If you don’t have a solid answer to these, it’s time to focus on measuring your efforts and tracking your results. After all, without having clear goals and marketing objectives, you cannot track how well your campaigns are performing and what results you are really looking for.What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing is an umbrella term that includes optimizing and marketing various content formats, like blog posts, web page content, email marketing, social media, eBooks, videos, and many more. There may be multiple activities involved while implementing content marketing strategies. However, the basic goal is to get your message to your target audience.
Your content creation team needs to stay updated on the latest content marketing trends and search engine algorithms to enhance higher customer engagement and conversions. In short, ensure your content is engaging and enables visitors to find the answers or products they are looking for.The Basic KPIs You Need to Track for Content Marketing
To track whether your hard work is really paying you off, your team needs to identify the metrics and track them to measure your content performance. Start with measuring the following Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to identify your success factors.Brand Awareness
The primary target for every business is to place their brand’s name favorably in the market and let others do the talking. To convert your content strategies into visibility gains, you need to focus on building brand awareness by tracking your −
Pageviews and website traffic volumes
Brand mentions on different social platforms
Unique visitors during certain offer periods or seasons, and
The number of followers gained on your blogs, social pages, and newsletters.Audience Engagement
After generating brand awareness, focus on improving audience engagement by measuring a few website metrics, including −
User engagement rate, that is, how long your visitors were interacting with your website content
Page time of your visitors to identify how engaging your content was for your potential buyers
Page or scroll depth that helps to determine at what points your visitors lost interest in your contentOrganic Visibility
Therefore, to give your brand a voice through greater organic visibility, track the following metrics −
Organic website traffic that gives an aggregate of your overall traffic on a certain web page. It helps to track how many potential customers landed on your content from the search results.
Keyword rankings and volumes can be easily measured through keyword research tools like Ahrefs, Google Search Console, or Google Keyword Planner.
Backlinks generated from high-value domains, boost your website’s credibility.ROI (Return On Investment)
Finally, your ROI is a key metric that lets you identify whether your content marketing strategies are paying off. Analyze the revenue generated over the past few years to determine your profits generated and the percentage of revenue increase after implementing content strategies.How to Analyze and Measure Your Content Performance?
Now that you are aware of the KPIs you need to measure and work on, let’s proceed toward our vital step of analyzing and tracking how well your content marketing campaigns are performing. The following approaches would help you stay competitive with highly engaging content.Revisit Your Goals
If you feel lost in a sea of information and ever-changing market trends, it’s time you revisit your business goals. What are the short- and long-term goals you wish to achieve? What are your organization’s vision and mission statements? Determine why you are putting efforts into content marketing in the first place.
Analyzing these answers from time to time is necessary to stay on track and ensure you are not getting diverted from your objectives and purpose. Besides, this era is witnessing a rise in purpose-driven brands. So, if your end goals are unclear, you cannot determine the right marketing approaches for your business.Track Social Media Engagement
Focus on posting more attractive and visually appealing content that is either 100% text or a balanced mix of multimedia. And don’t forget to use trending and relevant hashtags.
Another way of promoting audience engagement and discussion is by creating polls and lists, introducing fun concepts and games, and starting debate-worthy topics. In short, get your audience talking and then, from their activities, measure their interests and chances of getting converted and spreading your brand name through word-of-mouth.Track Your Backlinks
Backlinks play a vital role in boosting your site’s credibility and authority. Getting good quality backlinks from other creators and publications is a sign your content creation tactics are working and showing results.
However, remember to focus on quality rather than quantity and be consistent in your content creation schedule. It will help you receive more valuable backlinks from high-authority domains, giving search engines the impression that your content would create high value for visitors (and hence, the higher ranks!)Conclusion
We hope the above techniques and methods help your content marketing team to identify the loopholes and fill the gaps for better decision-making. These principle KPIs and strategies will not only change your content marketing game but also take your overall digital marketing to the next level. Just make sure your efforts are not going to waste by tracking your content performances from time to time, thus leading you in the right direction.
To pull off a great influencer marketing campaign you need to work with experienced social media influencers who share your brand values.
Influencer marketing, also known as branded content or working with creators, is a surefire way to expand the reach of your brand on social media.
There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to making this strategy work, but with the right planning and research, just about every business can benefit. Let’s look at how to make a social media influencer program work for you.
Bonus: Get the influencer campaign template for brands to easily plan your next campaign and choose the best social media influencer to work with.What is influencer marketing?
At its simplest, an influencer is someone who can influence others. In influencer marketing, a form of social media marketing, brands pay that person to promote their product or service to their followers.
Celebrity endorsements were the original form of influencer marketing. But in today’s digital world, social content creators with niche audiences can often offer more value to brands. These smaller accounts often have very engaged followers on social media.
So, a social media influencer is someone who wields their influence through social media. When you hire an influencer to promote your products or services, that’s influencer marketing.
Almost three-quarters (72.5%) of U.S marketers will use some form of influencer marketing this year — and that number is only going up over time.
For now, Instagram remains the platform of choice for social influencers. According to eMarketer’s estimates, 76.6% of U.S. marketers will use Instagram for their influencer campaigns in 2023. But keep an eye on TikTok.
While only 36% of U.S. marketers used TikTok for influencer campaigns in 2023, almost 50% will do so in 2023. That would make TikTok the third-most popular influencer marketing platform in 2023.
For example, with over 192,000 followers, creator Viviane Audi works with brands like Walmart and DSW on TikTok:Types of social media influencers
When you think “influencer,” does the Kardashian-Jenner family pop immediately to mind?
Source: @kyliejenner on Instagram
While these famous sisters are certainly some of the top social media marketing influencers, not all influencers are celebrities.
In fact, for many brands, influencers with a smaller but dedicated or niche follower base might be more effective. Influencers with 15,000 followers have some of the highest engagement rates on all platforms*. The cost, of course, can also be much lower.
Let’s look at the different types of Instagram influencers based on audience size. There’s no strict cut-off for audience size, but generally the types of influencers are broken down as:Nano-influencers
Nano-influencers have 10,000 followers or fewer, like mommy blogger Lindsay Gallimore (8.3K followers)
View this post on Instagram
A post shared by Lindsay Gallimore/Maman Loup (@mamanloupsden)Micro-influencers
Micro-influencers have 10,000 to 100,000 followers, like lifestyle blogger Sharon Mendelaoui (13.5K followers)Macro-influencers
Macro-influencers have 100,000 to 1 million followers, like food and travel creator Jean Lee (115K followers)Mega-influencers
Mega-influencers have 1 million+ followers, like TikTok star Savannah LaBrant (28.3M followers)How much does social influencer marketing cost?
Influencers with extensive reach rightly expect to be paid for their work. Free product might work with nano-influencers, but a larger influencer campaign requires a budget.
For large brands working with celebrity influencers, that budget may be quite large. U.S. spending on influencer marketing, for example, is set to top $4 billion in 2023.
Think about what kind of payment structure makes the most sense for your goals. But be willing to consider the influencer’s needs, too. For example, an affiliate or commission structure might be an option instead of a flat fee, or to reduce the flat fee.
In fact, 9.3% of U.S. influencers said affiliate marketing (through affiliate links and promo codes) was their top source of income.
That said, the most common baseline pricing formula for influencers’ Instagram posts is:
$100 x 10,000 followers + extras = total rate
What are the extras? Check out our post on influencer pricing for all the details.
Remember that micro-influencers and nano-influencers will have more flexible payment terms.How to create an influencer marketing strategy
1. Determine your goals
The number-one goal for brands using influencer marketing is to reach new target customers. This makes sense, since an influencer campaign extends your reach to that person’s followers.
Notice that the goal is simply to reach new customers, not necessarily to make a sale right off the top. Driving sales is actually the third most common goal of influencer marketing campaigns, after increasing brand awareness and product consideration.
Source: Advertiser Perceptions
Think about how your influencer marketing plan will fit into your broader social media marketing strategy and create measurable goals you can report on and track.
We’ve got a whole blog post on goal-setting strategies to get you started.
2. Know who you’re trying to influence
An effective influencer marketing strategy requires you to speak to the right people using the right tools—and the right influencers.
The first step is to define who your audience will be for this specific campaign.
Developing audience personas is a great way to make sure you understand who you’re trying to reach. Maybe you’re trying to reach more of your current audience—or an entirely new audience.
Once you’ve decided, create a matching set of influencer personas. This will help you understand the qualities you’re looking for in your influencers.
3. Understand the rules
Before you dive into influencer marketing, it’s important to understand the rules. In the United States, those rules come from the Federal Trade Commission.
The FTC takes disclosure very seriously. Make sure you build disclosure guidelines into your agreements with influencers.
Influencers must identify sponsored posts. However, they do not always do so. Or they might do so in such a subtle way that the disclosure is effectively hidden or incomprehensible.
The specific rules vary slightly by country, so be sure to check the most current requirements in your jurisdiction. For the most part, you just need to be clear and upfront so viewers understand when a post is sponsored in any way.
Here are some key points from the FTC:
Video reviews must include both written and verbal disclosure of the partnership. It must be within the video itself (not just the description).
The built-in tools on social media platforms alone are not enough. However, you should still use them. Instagram itself now specifies that any branded content (aka influencer marketing) on the platform must use the Branded Content tag to identify the relationship. This adds the text “Paid partnership with [your brand name]” in the post header.
#ad and #sponsored are great hashtags to use for disclosure. But make sure they’re highly visible and not just tacked on to the need of a long string of tags.
That last point is an important one. Some influencers may be wary about putting the #ad or #sponsored hashtag right up front. But that’s where it needs to be.
— FTC (@FTC) November 23, 2023
4. Consider the three Rs of influence
Influence is made up of three components:
A relevant influencer shares content relevant to your business and industry. They need to have an audience that aligns with your target audience.
For example, to showcase their inclusive swimsuit sizing, Adore Me partnered with body positive creator Remi Bader.
With 3.2 million views on Bader’s TikTok and more than 8,800 likes on her Instagram Reels, the video exposed the line to an impressive organic audience of dedicated followers.
Adore Me also used Bader’s content to create an Instagram ad combined with an Instant Experience. That influencer ad campaign drove a 25% increase in subscription opt-in with a 16% lower cost per customer than their usual Instagram ad campaigns.Reach
Reach is the number of people you could potentially reach through the influencer’s follower base. Remember: a small audience can be effective, but you need to make sure there’s enough of a following to align with your goals.Resonance
This is the potential level of engagement the influencer can create with an audience relevant to your brand.
Not to belabour the point, but bigger isn’t always better. As we said above, a huge follower count is meaningless if those followers aren’t interested in your offer. Niche influencers, on the other hand, can have very dedicated and engaged followers.
5. Compile a short list of influencers
When thinking about who you want to work with, the key is trust. Your audience must trust and respect the opinions of the influencers you partner with. Without the trust component, any results will be superficial. You’ll struggle to see a tangible business impact from your efforts.
A good engagement rate also means a loyal following, rather than an inflated follower count bolstered by bots and fraud accounts. You need to find someone who’s producing content with a look and feel that complements your own.
The tone must also be appropriate for the way you want to present your brand to potential customers. This will ensure things don’t feel disjointed in either party’s social media posts.
6. Do your research
Take a look at what your potential influencers are posting. How often are they sharing sponsored content?
If they’re already hitting followers with tons of paid posts, their engagement rate may not last. Look for plenty of organic, non-paid content to keep followers interested, enthusiastic, and engaged.
Keep this in mind when thinking about what you’ll ask the influencer to post, as well. Asking for too many posts in a short timeframe will make your offer hard for the influencer to accept, even if it comes with a large paycheck.
In-demand influencers get lots of offers. When you first approach an influencer, you’ll need to show that you’ve put in the time to learn what they do.
Make sure you know exactly what their channels are about and who their audience is.
7. Reach out privately, and personally
Start your communication with a new potential partner slowly by interacting organically with their posts. Like their content. Comment when appropriate. Be appreciative, not salesly.
When you’re ready to suggest a partnership, a direct message is a great place to start. If you can find an email address, try that too. But don’t send a mass email or generic DM.
It may take a little longer to write a personal message to each influencer. But, it will show you’re serious about the potential partnership. This will in turn increase your chances of striking a deal.
Provide as much information as you can about your brand. Tell them what you hope to accomplish with your Instagram campaign. Make it clear how the influencer will benefit, beyond the paycheck.
One key thing to keep in mind during this process: You may not actually want to use the word “influencer” when reaching out to potential partners. Content creators prefer to be called just that—creators—and may view “influencer” as a bit of an insult that belittles their work.
8. Collaborate with your influencer to develop effective content
A social media influencer who has worked hard to build a following will not accept a deal that makes their own personal brand seem inconsistent.
After all, influencers are content creation experts. This is why they prefer to be called creators. You’ll get the best value from their work by allowing them to showcase those skills.
It’s a good idea to provide some guidelines about what you’re looking for, of course. But don’t expect to stage-manage the entire campaign.
9. Measure your results
But to measure the effectiveness of a campaign, you have to understand its value in terms of return on investment. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to measure your campaign’s success.
UTM parameters are one way to track the visitors an influencer sends to your website. They can also help measure how much engagement the campaign receives.
When you assign each influencer their own unique links with UTM codes, you’ll get a clear picture of the results. That allows you to calculate the impact on your bottom line.
The “coupon” link referred to in the above influencer’s post likely had a UTM attached to it so that Royale could track how many sales came from it.
Giving influencers their own discount code is another easy way to track the sales they send your way.
If you use the branded content tools on Facebook and Instagram for your influencer campaigns, you’ll get access to insights for both feed and Stories posts. You can access these through Facebook Business Manager.
You could also request that the influencer send you detailed reports on the reach and engagement levels of their posts.Influencer marketing tools
Now that you’re ready to get started with influencer marketing, here are some tools to make it easier.
Hootsuite search streams can help you discover influencers by monitoring conversations relevant to your industry across multiple channels.
Once you have an initial set of influencers in mind, add them to a stream to track what they share and who they engage with. This will help you understand their relevance to your audience while highlighting other potential influencers to work with.
Try Hootsuite for free. You can cancel anytime.
Collabstr is a free marketplace where brands can search for influencers based on platform, niche, location, and more. From there, you can place orders with influencers and communicate with them directly through the platform until the deliverables have been submitted.
This app can search out top content shared by influencers based on topic and location. Use it to identify thought leaders and discover potential influencer partnerships based on the quality of the content they share.
This app provides custom influencer recommendations. It helps predict estimated reach, engagements, and other campaign results and guides you in creating influencer campaign proposals.
This free tool from Facebook allows brands to connect with pre-screened content creators on Facebook and Instagram.Influencer marketing platforms
Want to use an influencer marketing platform to connect directly with influencers? Some of the best include:
Make influencer marketing easier with Hootsuite. Schedule posts, research and engage with influencers in your industry, and measure the success of your campaigns. Try it free today.
*Source: Influencer Marketing Hub
Do it better with Hootsuite, the all-in-one social media tool. Stay on top of things, grow, and beat the competition.
Can content marketing software ease the pain?
A new technology report by Rebecca Lieb at Altimeter has just been launched evaluating the software landscape for content marketing. You might read that as a “not for me” – doesn’t sound too exciting at first glance, but we’d suggest that it might be worth re-thinking that stance.The $44Bn market: Content marketing is big and complex
Now valued at a whopping $44Bn, the creation and promotion of customer or branded content remains on a huge growth trajectory, and yet Altimeter finds 70% of marketers lack a consistent or integrated content strategy – marketers still have a scattergun approach to content.
“Content is the atomic particle of all marketing” Rebecca Lieb
[note: Seth Godin also said content was marketing’s last stand about 2–3 years ago]
The reality is that marketing is now a complex process, it involves multiple stakeholders throughout the organisation, outside agencies and suppliers, and multiple channels and media. It’s the growing channel and media complexity, driven by consumer behaviour changes, in turn increasing the adoption of content marketing, has given rise to a large, complex, and highly disparate content marketing landscape. A landscape which requires more intelligent tools, software that enables all, or elements, of the content marketing process from creation to promotion and governance, to be managed.Software options appear to make the complex more complex?
If we accept that content marketing is complex, then the current suppliers of software appear to make it much worse, that’s according to Altimeter – though I’d agree for what it’s worth.
What’s creating the issues and driving the need to change?
Organisations lack a cohesive, coherent, strategic approach to content
Creating and publishing content is hard, unrelenting work
Lack of ownership by one team or division
Lack of integration with other softwares and processes
Misaligned buyer needs vs planned investments
A tangled software landscape
Altimeter’s focus in the report is that software is the key to making the complex much simpler, yet currently there are too many solutions (110 suppliers), many of them small players all whilst the market itself is evolving. We are however seeing the giants, such as Adobe and Salesforce, changing (and buying) the market to create ‘marketing clouds’ – is this the future?
“By 2023, there will be ‘content stack’ offerings in the marketplace — end-to-end solutions akin to ad stacks.”
Altimeter believes that the content marketing tool landscape will begin to consolidate by 2023, that there will be “content stack” offerings — end-to-end solutions akin to ad stacks. Currently, no single supplier has an end-to-end solution. Logically we might accept that a few will partner, merge, acquire, and/or collaborate to create a total solution.
Altimeter Group’s Content Tools Stack HierarchyHow to define your content marketing tool stack
Much like any other area of business and software, Altimeter Group approaches the content marketing tools problem from the perspective of marketing challenges and needs first, highlighting three steps to best determine your content marketing tool stack:1) Determine your content marketing use cases.
Altimeter highlights eight over-arching use cases that fall into one of three phases of scaling complexity. Feed the beast might be how it feels for many yet to some extent we’re all in a process of refining and bringing in a robustness, forming roles outside of creation, such as analytics. The third phase of maturity is around governance, a phase where teams grow and regulatory requirements need to be met.
Three phases of maturity
Altimeter recommend that we’re certain to solicit stakeholders and end-users for requirements, input, and collaboration.
“You can’t retrofit activities to the tool; you have to align the tool with your activities.” Kristina Halvorsen Founder & CEO, Braintraffic2) Plan for integration and evolution.
Altimeter highlight that future-proofing software selection requires a plan, and that integration is tripartite:
Systems integration. Such as CRM, data and analytics
Integration with the organisation including internal communications and corporate intelligence
Integration with structure, workflow and processes – including internal and external teams or partners
Common integration points vs use cases3) Identify and prioritise suppliers based on those use cases.
Much like any other process of vendor selection. The above two steps enable the priorities and filters to be easily understood and so a checklist created.
Other key areas of best practise that we’d recommend would be enabling scale and phasing development for speed. Of course, the big one is always finding and developing the right team – all the software power in the world simply cannot replace people.
Want to know how those 110 suppliers (or vendors) compare? Check out page 15 of the report right here.
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