Short Introduction to French SEO & Social Media

This guide will deal with the best technics to advertise on Search Engine (SE) such as Google, Yahoo or Bing when you`re trying to have a French core target. We are going to analyze at the differences that can exist between French SEM markets and foreign ones. This short report purpose is to help companies have a first look at the subtleties of the French standards when it comes to creating an efficient digital advertising campaign.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of UCSD. Examples of analysis performed within this article are only examples. They should not be utilized in real-world analytic products as they are based only on very limited and dated open source information.

1/ French advertising culture

Before going online, it`s important to understand the way advertising is elaborated and displayed in France on old formats such as Billboards or TV.

At first glance, the first assumption that could be made about Frenches` tastes and habits in terms of lifestyle is that they love everything that is refined and stylish. Indeed, it could be obvious for anyone since it’s usually a stereotype but I can tell you that it’s definitely true, especially if it’s about what fall into the following categories: Foods, Wines, Cosmetics or Clothes.

Let`s illustrate this point with concrete examples:

This poster advertising is part of one of the most successful campaign ever done by Louis Vuitton in France.

If we literally translate what is written on this ad into English it means: “Louis Vuitton, an invitation to travel”. It emphasizes the fact that the product alone is part of a mystery that will bring you to an unknown location.

Invitation au Voyage Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton, Invitation au Voyage Campaign, 2012

This concept is directly inspired by the “Disruption” strategy invented in France by TBWA. The aim of this strategy is to break the code of an established policy in a specific domain; this advertising campaign just redefined the concept of poster advertising itself by minimizing the information on purpose. Here, we just have the name of the brand that is visible what lets people imagining the meaning of it as opposed to the Japanese way which is much more informative.

This practice evolved more and more on the long run until a few years ago when it became the standards in France in all kinds of industry such as mass retailing, cosmetics, alcohol or fashion.

As for example you will find here some poster advertisings that illustrate perfectly this point.

Absolut Ad 2016

Even if different types of advertising still exist, uncluttered ads are the most spread ones in France and the trend is far from vanishing.

Other kinds of advertising (not disruption based) depends directly of products sold. As for examples if you`re trying to sell a ready-to-eat meal even if disruption has already been used for that kind of products the current trend is to use price emphasized ads.

2/ French Digital Advertising Market

 

The French advertising market is one of the biggest in Europe (3rd behind UK and Germany). A lot of powerful advertising groups are based in France such as the Publicis Groupe (Turnover of 9.6 Billion in 2015) or JCDecaux (3.4 Billion in 2016). French is also the language spoken by a lot of people outside of France. As for example in Canada (Quebec), Africa (Nigeria, Algeria…) or others.

Moreover the presence of some of the biggest international groups retailing all around the world (LVMH, Channel, L’Oréal…) make advertising even more important in France when you know that all decisions for the communication policy are taken in their France based headquarters.

Starting from that point it`s logical to have one of the most active market always at the leading-edge of new methods and concepts when it comes to advertising. Something we`d like to point out is that trend is all the more true for the Online advertising market since it`s increasing at an exponential rate.

France just spent 4.2 Billion in 2015 in online advertising

Even if it doesn`t seem to be a lot, it means that between the 2014 and 2015 the online advertising market has grown by more than 13% in France.

We also have to keep an eye on some variables we must take into account in order to understand who we are advertising at when we`re relying on an online marketing strategy. As for example the share of connected people without any degree was 44% in 2014 what is far away from the 97 % of the higher education degrees holders (Source: Conseil general de l`economie).

Last but not least, let`s have a look on how is evolving the repartition of the digital advertising expenses in France.

Although everyone is always speaking about the importance of social media in digital marketing we mustn’t forget the importance of other media that can weight much more in the balance than what we could think in a first glance.

2017 to 2021 data are all forecasts

In average social media represent 9% of the total digital advertising expenses in France, moreover, even if the pure amount of money spent is increasing each year it does it proportionally to the total what results in an overall stability of the weighted expenses.

As soon as you look at the graph you understand the importance of emphasizing an efficient Search Engine Optimization strategy since it represents up to 48% in 2015 to start to slightly decrease afterwards on the following years because of the rise of Video advertising shares.

To sum up, an efficient digital marketing strategy in France must include at least SEO and Video advertising in order to do a long-term bet, especially if your budget is relatively low.

Nevertheless, we recommend you strongly to add social media to your strategy since you could suffer from a lack of competitiveness if you don`t use them and not be able to face competitors.

If you have extra funds, try to use also classifieds advertising to your assets for a more complete strategy but don`t forget that beyond money it will cost you also time. Banners are not very efficient in France, people find them invasive and are often assimilated as Spam.

Now that we have understood the cultural characteristics of the French advertising market we can deal with the following issue: How can I optimize and develop a SEM & SNS strategy in France in 2017?

What Search Engine in France?

First we need to look at the different resources we must rely on in order to perform well. Let`s have a look on the different search engine used in France at the end of 2014:

As in almost all the European countries, unsurprisingly Google is the absolute leader with more than 93% of the shares.

Even if Yahoo and Bing are still used, they are slowly losing more and more market shares for years and are closed from getting out of this country.

Then, it`s clear that if you target France for a SEO campaign, using other search engine than Google would be just a loss of time.

Moreover, according to a survey done by Eurostat in 2016, 6.6% of the total population of France are foreign people. Even if it`s a melting pot including various nationalities, you can try to optimize the number of people reached through your SEO campaign by including a few ads in English. By doing so you will slightly increase the potential market shares covered by your ads.

What comes next logically is another important insight we have to analyze: The Social Media utilization habits of French people.

When it comes to Social Media, French people are generally keen on Facebook whose the Messenger app is used as a main way to communicate with others (in addition to classical text message). YouTube must also be highly considerated.

Twitter and Instagram even if not as used as the first ones are gaining market shares each year what makes them even more interesting.

Source: Statista 2014

But it would be genuine to think that this chart alone let us understood the full potential of the French SM market for a company who wants to advertise in France. The time spent per SM chart gives us more data to complete the analysis. It makes us able to have an idea of the “weight” of each social media in the daily life of french people.

Having in mind that our aim is to show as many ads as possible to our core target, it seems defitinely that Facebook and YouTube are social networks we can use for as strategic plateforms.

Nevertheless, we have to keep in mind that even if the time spent per day on YouTube is the highest among all SM, the timeframe when we can display ads is lower than others Social Media. Indeed we have generally one opportunity at the beginning of each video to run an ad even though the CTR is very low as opposed to other SM where opportunities are numerosous and the CTR is generally higher.

In a nutshell, although YouTube is a Media we can perform admirably on, a main SNS strategy should include it but not making the core of it.

So what do we do ?

To sum up, in France your digital marketing strategy must include Google as a search engine and Facebook as a social network. Everything that comes in addition to it is a plus that genereally perform relatively well combined with the two mentionned above.

Don`t forget to consider the nature of your product before promoting on social media. If your business is all about visual experiences it will be clever to associate it with Instagram mainly because of its nature. As for example, in France all clothes start-ups use Instagram combined with Facebook together in order to create an exponential followers growth as it is massively shared on both of the social networks.

3/ How to create ads that fit the French market?

 

In order to create an efficient SEO campaign in French you must rely on all the cultural aspects that have been listed and explained before. After reading them all, you can definitely consider the followings:

  • Simple and uncluttered visual ads on Display.

 

  • Crazy about disruption when it comes to luxury brands or high price products. If you`re selling high end goods then aim for original ads that can be really catchy. For text ads, try to give them a bit of cultural Japanese touch. It will make them even more relevant afterwards.

 

  • Brand image is essential for everything linked to fashion, luxe and more generally conspicuous consumption. In France it`s all about perception and brand recognition.

 

  • They need direct information to understand clearly what they buy; unclear or confused information just lead to poor CTR as the interest will drop.

 

  • Begging for clicks or action is not efficient, try to avoid “book now” or others except if they are linked to a time-bounded promotion. Don`t try to trick people, they will just realize as for example that your ad is disinformation and will never deal with your website again. So it`s even more important to don`t forget to pause old promo ads!

 

To conclude let’s never forget that 1 image worth 1000 words. So here some 8000 words value presentation to integrate those concepts even better!

Uploading YouTube Videos For Max Views

Uploading YouTube Videos for Max Views

How to Upload YouTube Videos For Max Views in 7 Butt-Kicking Steps

Are you ready to make your investment pay off and get max YouTube views?

Yes, of course!  It’s been a ton of work to produce this video and it’s time to make it count.  The challenge at this stage, especially if you’ve been wearing all hats, is burnout.  You’ve completed dozens if not hundreds of decisions and tasks to finish the video and you desperately want to hit upload, call it done and hope that YouTube works its magic and your video gets a boatload of views.

It’s time to take a breather, acknowledge the success of creating the video and get ready for the second phase.  Wait, what … a second phase?  Yes, and it’s actually a lot of fun! 

The second phase is where you bring your “video to market” by getting it in front of your desired audience.   We’re going to talk about how to do this by reviewing what Vlogger and YouTuber extraordinaire Amy Schmittauer of Savvy Sexy Social has to say.  So grab your favorite beverage and discover what you need to do to get your video across the finish line and in front of your target audience.  

  1.  Keyword or Phrase Research

Uploading YouTube Videos for Max Views

It all starts here.   Before you take another step you need to know if there is a demand for your topic.  Ideally, you will have done this before you created the video.  If not, kind of a bummer, but do it next time. Either way, use it to help prepare keywords or phrases that people are searching for.  If they’re relevant to your topic you can use them for the next step.  There are several free tools, just Google “YouTube Keyword research.”  You can get started with Keywordtool.io/youtube or Tubebuddy, a Chrome extension to get a feel for how they work.

2.  Prepare Metadata and a Custom Thumbnail

Uploading YouTube Videos for Max Views

YouTube’s algorithms are the second audience to consider since your video has to make it past the technology that is processing 300 hours of video every minute.  You can help yourself by making it easier for YouTube’s gatekeeper to properly categorize your video.  This gatekeeper is an algorithm and the language it speaks is metadata.  For your video to be found by your audience,  it has to be in the right section, where viewers would expect it to be.   This is the time to gather your keyword research and plan the video’s headline, description, and tags.

To stand out from the competition, you’ll need to create a custom thumbnail.  Don’t let YouTube auto-generate one for you,  it won’t be pretty; it will either be irrelevant and random or it will resemble a DMV or Costco Membership photo at best.  No, this won’t do.  It’s time to be strategic and think about standing out from the competition.  Think about scrolling through Netflix or the checkout line at the grocery store.  How do you make your choices?  Your potential viewers do the same thing when deciding to watch a YouTube video.  Follow the pro’s lead and create a high quality, attractive thumbnail that represents your content and shows less than 3 people, ideally one closeup face.  

The next tip is to make it easier for viewers as they’re scanning through videos; add text to the thumbnail.  Keep it brief, a supermini headline with large, legible font.  This reinforces that this video is what the viewer is looking for and will answer a question.  

3.  Upload video with metadata and thumbnail

Uploading YouTube Videos for Max Views

As automated as the whole video upload process may appear, resist the urge to put it on autopilot and walk away.   Stay put and monitor the upload.  Add the metadata and thumbnail before the process is complete for best results.

4.  Review video for errors

Uploading YouTube Videos for Max Views

When you’re creating your video, part of the post-production process involves checking for errors.  It’s a given that errors happen, so don’t fret, you’ll need to scan multiple times to smooth out the edges.  You’ll catch mistakes you didn’t see before and it’s best to have a second or third pair of eyes to review the video.  This is important after the upload also.  Video upload is not a perfect process.  Stuff can happen in transmission that produces unintended results.  This is the time to catch and fix mistakes.

5.  Add Cards and End Screen

Uploading YouTube Videos for Max Views

What is it about binge-watching and why does it seem that we can’t get enough of our favorite shows?  Who knows, but why not tap into this behavior by encouraging viewers to stay on your site and give them a reason to keep watching?  Cards and endscreens  are two YouTube tools that can help keep viewers tuned it and coming back.  Although YouTube allows up to 5 cards, keep it to one or two, because anymore can be distracting.  Think strategically about the endscreen message.  Do you want to promote other videos, encourage subscription, or both?  What message will encourage the viewer to stay interested and engage?

6.  Comment on the video

Uploading YouTube Videos for Max Views

The comment section is where things come alive, dialogue happens, and viewers interact with one another.  It’s important to throw out the welcome mat and let viewers see your comment under the video, especially in the early stages of building an audience.   Viewers will see you’re there to engage in conversation and are interested in what they have to say.

If someone posts a negative comment and it’s a legitimate customer complaint, promptly engage, keep it light and professional and offer to resolve this issue offline.   This can be turned into a positive as you differentiate your brand as responsive and demonstrate that your door is open.

7.  Publish, Share, and Comment More 

Uploading YouTube Videos for Max Views

Rather than leaving views to chance, you can hustle to get your video seen by more viewers.  Unless you’re lucky, lots of views won’t happen on their own.  Hard work isn’t glamorous, but it’s effective with a good strategy.

Have you ever seen your favorite actors on talk shows discussing their latest project?  Why do they do it?  Because they have a movie, show or event to promote – these celebrities work the talk show circuit, post on social media, and go on podcasts or radio; in short, they move to the second phase of the project, doing what it takes to get your attention and butt in the seat!

Since this works for the big guys, why not take a page from their playbook for your videos?  Prior to hitting publish on YouTube or right after, take your custom thumbnail with text, a catchy headline and post it on your social media channels.  A solo hyperlink without an image won’t cut it here.  The goal is to take up visual real estate in social media feeds; therefore, compelling visuals and copy are a must to help drive traffic to your video.  What words can you use to build up some excitement and anticipation?  If you have an email list, let them know about the video.

And what about the comment section, after you’ve posted your introductory comments and engaged initially?  Follow the celebrity lead…keep the conversation going, answering questions, engaging viewers a.k.a. doing your thing as you begin to build a following.  

Here are a couple of Dwight approved bonuses to help you do a roundhouse.

Uploading YouTube Videos for Max Views

Bonus #1 – “Uploading YouTube Videos for Maximum Views” Infographic 

Uploading YouTube Videos For Max Views

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Bonus #2 – “Uploading YouTube Videos for Maximum Views”  SlideShare


Sources:
  1. Amy Schmittauer at Savvy Sexy Social https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxN1Hdu4s7g&t=335s
  2. https://www.fastcompany.com/3059450/netflix-knows-which-pictures-youll-click-on-and-why
  3. Ryan McGuire, Gratisography
  4. Hans-Peter Gauster on Unsplash
  5. Savvy Sexy Social
  6. https://pixabay.com/en/gift-box-christmas-bow-present-2934858/
  7. proprecisionpainting.com/top-10-paint-fails-in-pictures/
  8. YouTube – All About Cards
  9. Photo by Alain Pham on Unsplash
  10. Photo by Jordan Whitfield on Unsplash
  11. Giphy.com – The Office

Don’t create content that doesn’t help you to grow!

SEO & Content Marketing

Don’t just create content to fill in your blog or other content channels. Instead be smart and use content that can help to enhance your business. Social media and SEO (search engine optimization) goes hand in hand. SEO data helps you to improve your social media efforts, whereas social media can help to increase your search rankings. Why writing something that doesn’t even help you to attract more traffic to your social media channels or website?

SEO SEO target audiencedata should be the source of your content, since it provides bunch of information about your target audience: who they are, how they search for things, what keywords they’re using and what sites they’re surfing. The goal of your content creation is to provide the information that your target audience needs and searches for!

 


Keywords – Do you know what they search?

In order to increase your brand presence and visibility in the Google ranking you need to understand which terms are being used. These terms are the ones that interests your target audience therefore your content should cover these terms. This is where SEO gets into the game. It is important to know the most frequent search queries related to your brand.

Right toolsMost of the time, the best insights come from discussions about your niche on general, but not a specific product. That is to say that, you need to search for the keywords you want to target in organic and paid search and use them in your content in order to get social media awareness.

When you discover these keywords, you can set alerts to do a daily search on various social networks like Twitter and Facebook to get interesting insight from your niche. Then it is just to build content around these keywords.

Tools to learn about your keywords  MOZ or Mention.


 

Competitor insights- Why reinventing the wheel?

Sometimes the wheel could be invented by your competitors. Determine who your competitors are, and which companies have a similar audience with an effective content strategy. By analyzing how your business ranks in your niche, you can easily set goals for your social media campaign.

There is many tools that will help you to define where the best competitors write about and where it’s getting shared the most. This approach allows you to not only build your content strategy, but also improve your social media efforts.

Tool to look at your competitors SEranking


Viral trends-2

Trends- Google offers all the hot topics

There is lots of data available to use for marketers. When creating content take a look at the trends and identify what topics are hot for a specific period of time. You should modify your social media content based on most popular queries, this will help your content to stay relevant for your customers. You will be able to design your content in a more fun and attention-grabbing manner.

Google is making lots of its data available for everyone, Google Trends, Google Trends for Websites as well as Google Insights for Search.  These are just few tools you can use in order to stay up to date.

Look at one of the many trend tools from Google trends


 

 

 

 

Machine Learning & Content Marketing

Machine Learning

 

Machine Learning is one of the biggest things that is happening in the online marketing world right now. On first read, it sounds like something out of the future. The crazy thing is that it’s been in existence since the 1950s, but really blew up in its current use in the 2010s.

Here are some typical forms of Machine Learning that we all know:

 

  • The Google Self-Driving Car

Screen Shot 2017-02-13 at 1.58.26 PM

The Google Self-Driving car is probably the epitome of machine learning as we all know it. With advanced algorithms that adapt and optimize driving style based on its surroundings without any reprogramming necessary, the Google car is simply amazing.

 

  • Siri / “Okay Google”

Screen Shot 2017-02-13 at 2.07.20 PM

Our mobile phone assistants are another amazing example of Machine Learning as we all know it. With adaptive interfaces that change based on our location, time of day, and mobile browsing habits, we have a fine example of Machine Learning in our own pockets.

 

How is Machine Learning used in Marketing?

Google RankBrain is one of the main catalysts when it comes to Machine Learning and Marketing. With its main goal of having a more “conversational” approach to search engine usage, RankBrain really brings its own intuition and AI into the search engine marketing game.

Check out this example of RankBrain’s Machine Learning hard at work!

 

Screen Shot 2017-02-13 at 5.44.50 PM

You guessed it, The Hangover.

 

Why should we use Machine Learning in Marketing?

  • We have a huge amount of available data, given the shift in our browsing habits towards mobile & app use. We ought to use this data, and it’s a win-win situation. Our advertisements become more targeted, and marketers get amazing insights on their data!
  • We can learn about what marketing efforts were worth conducting, and what efforts were not working as well – all in real time.

 

What are some things we can do as content marketers?

  1. Take advantage of your long-form content! By leveraging your long-form content to add more keywords and relevant search terms, you are able to naturally implement recurring target keywords without sounding massively redundant. As a result, you are also allowed to have more chances to use relevant keywords!
  2. One thing we can do to work with Machine Learning is to tailor your content towards a specific target audience. A major update with Google’s RankBrain includes its capability to better understand conversational content, and even make educated inferences based on its AI algorithm.
    • By tailoring your content towards a specific target audience, your results will be more likely to rank higher in the search engine results.
  3. Another thing that we can do as content marketers to work better with Machine Learning is to create content that sounds natural! As web surfers, we are no longer bound by specific search terms and rules.
  4. Much like our school projects, it is alway great to incorporate references from case studies, white papers, and authoritative knowledge sources! With Machine Learning becoming more prevalent with our online search engines, part of the new intuition that the AI algorithms will seek is the validity of information. Having greater quality sources will result in your content being “vouched” better by the search engines.

 

In Conclusion:

  • Don’t act like a bot to beat the bot!
  • Craft your content in a conversational tone – be comfortable.
  • Leverage your long form content to incorporate key phrases and words (in a conversational way).

 

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Sources:

  1. http://www.cmo.com/features/articles/2015/6/16/applying-machine-learning-to-marketing.html#gs.gknfXFM
  2. https://econsultancy.com/blog/67745-15-examples-of-artificial-intelligence-in-marketing/
  3. http://www.optimove.com/learning-center/machine-learning
  4. https://www.webtrends.com/blog/2016/03/four-benefits-of-machine-learning-for-marketing/
  5. https://www.toptal.com/machine-learning/machine-learning-theory-an-introductory-primer

 

Why is Long-Tail keyword strategy important for start-up business

loLong-Tail keyword strategy is very important for businesses, especially start up ones. Many of them are struggling from driving users to your web sites and blogs from search engines because it’s very hard for them to win topper position in Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs) competing with  mature companies. But you can place your contents on the topper position and get gather more users to your platforms if you take Long-Tail keyword strategy.

What is Long-Tail keyword?

The definition of Long-Tail Keyword is following below.

“Keywords or Key phrases that are more specific and longer than more commonly searched for keywords”

The search volume of longer phrases and specific keywords are fewer than common phrases and keywords. But, instead of that, few companies target them. It means that Long-Tail keyword’s competitiveness is lower than common ones. Contents with less competitiveness keywords don’t have to scramble for the top position, and so they can get high rank in search engine more easily.

Long-tail keyword and SEO
The relationship between Long-tail keyword and SEO

You cannot get many visitors with the each individual content because the search volume are few, as I said above. However, if you create many Long-Tail-keyword contents and success in placing many of them on topper posit in search engine, you can increase the total number of traffic. It ‘s said that this strategy is easier to improve SEO than competing with big companies for the topper position of big-keyword contents.

More than that, Long-Tail keyword can generate more conversions

Which of users typing “Playstation VR” or “Where to buy Playstation VR”, do you think, is likely to buy Playstation VR? Of course, the answer is the latter. the reason for searching for the place where they can buy the console is that they intend to buy it somewhere. On the other hand, users, who type “Playstation VR”, want just to know “What is Playstation VR” and “What experience they can have with the console”, and then their purchase intent is low. Therefore, users typing for longer and specific keywords in search engine have high motivation for the contents, and then more conversion could be generated if you optimize your contents to Long-Tail keyword.

Lon-tail-keyword-and-conversion
The relationship between long tail keyword and conversion

Case Study (NETFLIX)

Netflix succeeded in getting many subscripsions with one of Long-Tail keyword strategies. We can watch many movies and dramas with the service regardless of major and minor titles. The company focused on getting gather “Not famous” titles their competitors wouldn’t try to deal with and making original contents. Few people seek “Not famous” title and their original contents. But, instead of that, these titles were low competitivness contents and could easily get the top position in Google.  As a result, Netflix could achieve in getting more visitors and gaining more subscriptions than Hulu.

Netflix-case-study
Netflix focused on minor title

The most important point of creating Long-Tail-keyword contents

You have to brainstorm as many keywords and phrases as possible your target users will type to research about our products and topics involved with them. But before that there is something we have to do. You have to identify the behavior, habit and value of your target users such as how old they are, what they are interested in, what they do on weekend and so on. You can come up with more Long-Tail keywords and phrases and create good contents because of this action.

Resources:

Why focus on long tail keywords?


https://yoast.com/befriend-the-long-tail/https://moz.com/blog/long-tail-seo-
target-low-volume-keywords-whiteboard-friday

The Power of the Buyer Persona

Content marketing yay

I will never forget how I learned about the Buyer Persona. About a year ago, I was given the opportunity to become part of our Product Marketing team at work. Marketing was an area I was always fascinated with so I jumped right in headfirst. My first week on the job and we have a group meeting where we are given the revenue goals for our extended team. Our goal was to grow our revenue by double digits! And because we were new, our budget was minuscule.

At this stage our marketing consisted of 2 webpages and 3 pieces of marketing collateral. So we definitely needed content but what kind of content? Where should we put it? And how do we know if it is successful?

Get to know your customer

The first thing we did was survey our customer base. We had to get to know our customers on an intimate basis. This meant we also sat in on sales calls, went to customer sites and host small focus groups. Soon we began to pick up on trends and themes from customers. The key themes were:

  • We didn’t know you offered that service. If you did, we would have bought it.
  • My lab is new to next-gen sequencing. Can you help us get up and running?
  • Your competitors have been offering those services for a while. What took so long?
  • Not sure if I need it now but I will sometime in the future.

Now that we had the customer insights, we decided to dig into the data. We did research on customer purchasing patterns, complimentary product purchases, promotions and information from sales opportunities.

We had captured some interesting insights and began to develop our content marketing strategy. Our team didn’t have a lot of time and needed to get started right away. But where do we begin?

Develop Buyer Persona’s

Based on the data we collected we identified 3 different buyer persona’s.

  • Researcher Randy – Randy is new to next generation sequencing. He just received a grant to further research into immunology. He needs to publish a research paper before the grant funds run out.

    Buyer Persona Randy
    Buyer Persona for Randy
  • Clinic Director Curt – Curt just opened a new sequencing lab. He is under constant pressure to keep costs low while they are trying to get new customers. If that wasn’t enough, his lab is subject to compliance audits by the FDA.

    Buyer Persona Curt
    Buyer Persona for Curt
  • Christina Bylaw – Christina’s lab has equipment which needs to be calibrated and qualified on a regular basis. This requirement is not optional as it is mandated by law.

    Buyer Persona Christina
    Buyer Persona for Christina

We aligned the new content with the buyer persona and the lifecycle stage they were in at the time. This also helped us to prioritize our marketing efforts. Which meant we went in this order: Christina, Curt then Randy. Once the content was created and pushed out on the various platforms, we breathed a collective sigh of relief. The hard part was over. We were confident that we had created the right content for the right customer segment.

Did we hit our target?

At the end of the year we sat together eagerly awaiting our financial results. It was incredible! We had totally blown away our target! All of our hard work had paid off. After a few minutes of celebration, it hit us. We had to go back and revise our strategy because what worked this year was not going to work for next year.

10 Tried and True Content Marketing Strategies

10-Tried-and-True-Content-Marketing-Strategies-Tips-Tricks

10 Tried and True Content Marketing Strategies

Tips and Tricks for Content Marketing: What Works and What Doesn’t

Eleanor Roosevelt advised to, “Learn from the mistakes of others.  You can’t live long enough to make them all yourself.”  Here are 10 tried and true content marketing strategies that other companies have employed.  There is no one size fits all solution, but certainly some of these tips and tricks may be tailored specifically for your brand, customers and industry.

  1. Look in the Mirror – Know who you are and know your brand’s DNA. Make sure you are happy with the reflection you see in the mirror. Be focused and not all over the place.  In recent years, Microsoft has been labeled as having an identity crisis, dabbling in phones, music players and tablets to try to compete with market leaders.

    who-are-you-content-marketing-brand-DNA
    Who are You and What is Your Brand’s DNA?
  2. Be Unique, not Ubiquitous – Differentiate and innovate. You don’t want to oversaturate the market as it may decrease consumers’ perceived value. Coach handbags once ruled the U.S. market, but then, they were everywhere and the demand for them decreased since they became common.  This applies to content as well.

  3. From Fad to Fab – Launch new and improved products or update existing ones. Don’t be a one-hit wonder, but keep releasing hits in order to be legendary. Dyson didn’t just stop with the vacuum.  They now have fans, heaters and hair dryers.

  4. Address the Masses, but Appeal to the Individual – Be relatable and inspiring to all, but appeals to individuals. In the end, it’s the individual that adopts and purchases. Pandora bracelets are a good example because patrons may fully customize their jewelry. Your content needs to speak to individuals.

    Pandora-Customizable-Charm-Bracelets-Jewelry-Content-Marketing
    Does Your Product Allow for Customization and Personalization to the Individual?
  5. Give a Mouse a Cookie and He Will Ask for Milk – Customers who make an initial investment may have a likelier chance to continue the relationship. Barnes and Noble members pay an annual fee, but receive extra discounts and benefits. Membership encourages brand loyalty.

  6. Hive Mind – Build communities. Community customers share stories and encourage new members. The Tupperware parties of the past trail blazed for new companies like Lularoe, Scentsy and StellaDot.  The Lululemon community, although not direct sales, also has a loyal community.

  7. Clandestine Product Placement – Overly blatant and obvious product placement is on the outs. The new way is to stealthily have influencers, celebrities, bloggers promote your products. Birkenstocks’ sudden resurgence in fashion was due to popular bloggers wearing and being photographed with the German leather sandals.

  8. Adapt or Die – If you don’t go with the flow, you’ll be struggling against the current. Know what works and what doesn’t and if it doesn’t, be quick to change directions. Blackberry’s insistence on keeping its keyboard in lieu of touch screens may have led to the Blackberry’s demise.  Old content should not be recycled unless it’s still relevant.

    Blackberry-Mobile-Phone-Popular-Keyboard-CrackBerry-Content-Marketing
    Blackberry’s Infamous Keyboard “CrackBerry”

    Death-Demise-Blackberry-Mobile-Phone-Content-Marketing
    RIP Blackberry.

9.  Own Technology, Don’t Let It Own You – Use technology to your advan tage. Don’t overdo it with spam e-mails or texts, but send effective, educational and entertaining messages to spark interest. IKEA does a great job not only sending out coupons, but also educating on how to optimize IKEA products in your home.  Their timely e-mails and annual catalogs contain useful and memorable content.

10.  FAIL, but Don’t Fall – Understand that not everything will be a success. Accept failure, but don’t fall because of it. Other companies screw up royally, but the good ones live to fight another day.  Apple/Steve Jobs was a classic example of a comeback kid.  The Newton PDA was a failure, but they came back with the iMac, iPod, iPhone & iPad.