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content marketing in 2016

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The Friday Fix - February 26, 2016

Hello, hello! It’s the best day of the week; that’s right, it’s Friday Fix Day!  Today we look at telling your brand story on social media, yesterday’s launch of Facebook Canvas, thoughts on good storytelling, the importance of using a data-driven approach in marketing, and what five content marketing conferences you absolutely should attend this year among other fantastic things related to content marketing.  So, if you’re ready to get fixed, dial 1-800-Fix-A-Lot and kick those content thoughts (into high gear, am I right?).

Thought Leadership: What Makes a Good Story?

We (writers and storytellers) spend a lot of time waxing on what makes a good story…probably so much that you wonder why we still talk about it (after all, we have at least one article per week on best-storytelling practices).  Well, the thing is, there’s always something new to learn and new ways to analyze storytelling. In fact, I just read something on the rule of threes that helped me think of things in a totally new way. Hence, this is why Cheryl Connor’s article is so valuable. The focus of her article is on story and why how it’s told is actually more important than what it’s about. It’s a great read for any writer interested in improving their craft.

How to Tell Your Brand Story on Social Media

futurpreneur.ca

futurpreneur.ca

Think of a brand; what comes to mind?  An image, right?  Well, according to Alex Frias, there are a few important dos for telling your brand story on social media and the first among those is to have images that relate to your brand.  In addition to encouraging you to empower the community to tell your story through their eyes (yes!), Alex also advises against using hashtags for the take of hashtagging (yes! Yes! A thousand times, yes! I’ll have what she’s having, yes!).  Obviously, I’m not a fan of frivolous hashtagging or using a hundred handtags just because you can.  I digress…check out the article for the other two tips on telling your brand story on social media.

Should Marketing Leaders Outsource Their Digital Content Strategies?

As one who has worked on both sides of the agency fence, Daniel Ruyter holds an unbiased opinion as he evaluates whether or not it’s best to outsource digital content strategies. Daniel starts by discussing some of the observations he made as a digital creator and then as a client. Focusing on strategy, Daniel outlines the key takeaways from his experiences and why a blended, diverse team is essential for success.

What the Content Marketing Team of the Future Looks Like

skyword.com

skyword.com

I only have one question regarding this topic for pundit Kyle Harper and that is: are future content marketing teams prettier than we are?  I’m kidding…more importantly, are they better storytellers?  Actually, hopefully they (we) will be better storytellers as we evolve as adaptive content teams. According to Kyle, the future’s adaptive teams will be brand investors; they’ll be comprised of managers and editors; and they’ll use external networks to grow their teams. Though these teams will probably change shape, the essence of storytelling for audience connectivity remains –as always—at the heart of things. That said, what does your team look like, and is it adaptive or heading in that direction?

Smart Content Marketing from the Next Big Brands

I love breaking down successful content marketing stories and strategies to figure out what companies are doing right (and then seeing how those approaches can be applied). In this article, Meg Cannistra explores five smaller companies that are using content marketing to make big splashes. Meg highlights Lyft, Net-a-Porter, Dollar Shave Club, BirchBox, and Casper with the takeaway that smart storytelling and audience-centric content marketing isn’t exclusive to the GEs of the world.

Content Marketing Cookbook: 5 Easy Recipes for Quick Content

bostinno.streetwise.co

bostinno.streetwise.co

I know what you’re thinking…can’t we just do take-out? Hah. Wouldn’t that be nice…to just call someone and order an already-made perfect content marketing strategy?  Well, sorry to say you can’t just call and order a pre-made approach, but Kyle S. Gibson’s easy, customizable recipes are kind of the next-best-thing. He gives you the recipes for a statistics roundup, relevant quotes, tool introduction, the checklist, and the analogy.  Delicious.  Are you as hungry for good content as I am?

Facebook Officially Launches Canvas Ads that Load Full-Screen Rich Media Pages In-App

New tech alert!  With the launch of Canvas ads, users get rich full-screen ads that don’t take them off of the social media site’s network page (so, no more waiting for mobile websites to load).  Josh Contine breaks down where Facebook started with Canvas last year and where it is now; interactive elements including animations, tilt-to-view-images, videos, and more are allowed with Facebook Canvas. At no additional cost, this vehicle for storytelling through ads vehicle is worth checking out.

Data: The Heart of Content Marketing in 2016

It’s been a while since we’ve talked about data-driven storytelling.  In this article, Juliette Otterburn-Hall focuses on data as not only a way to avoid being buried in the crush of content that’s “out there” but also as a way to reach the audiences you most wish to engage with.  Specifically, Juliette looks at data on social media content and how using data-driven insight can be a predictor of success; she cites Coca-Cola’s YouTube Christmas video as a negative example of why you definitely want trial content before airing it.

How the Cloud Can Improve Content Marketing

Later in the Fix, we talk about five content conferences you definitely want to try to attend this year, but obviously, money is an object. While Sarah Patrick and we are sure you’ve heard of Cloud storage solutions, you may not have related those to how they can help you produce better content (or save money…you know, money that can be used for traveling and honing your storytelling skills).  So, check out Sarah’s piece to see how Clouds can improve your content marketing.

5 Marketing Conferences Content Creators Should Attend in 2016

skyword.com

skyword.com

We know that budgets are skimpy enough without scrapping up the cash to attend content marketing conferences on top of everything else; however, there are a few conferences out there that are worth scrapping for. According to Emma Siemasko Conversion XL Live, Content Rising Summit, Content Marketing World, MozCon, and INBOUND are the five you should absolutely make it a point to attend this year. Click the link to see why (and to get ideas on ways you can convince the finance department to fund the trip).

Leap Year 2016: 5 Reasons Your Business Should Leap into Video Marketing

In case you haven’t yet realized, this year is a Leap Year...a bizarre occurrence in which once every four years, February has an extra day. Even weirder is that it’s called “Leap Year”, but hey, rather than analyzing it, we’re jumping on it (pun intended) and suggesting that you do, too. Make this year the year you “leap” into video marketing.  Look, we understand why you might be hesitant (for example, maybe you don’t know a thing about making a video), but that’s why we’re here.  Let us start by showing you give ways in which you absolutely should throw caution to the wind and “leap” into video making (the payoff is beyond with it).


Amy Delcambre is a freelance content and travel writer from Mobile, Alabama with a Master's in Creative Writing. When she's not painting the page with nouns, verbs, and adverbs, she's slaying grammar beasts as a freelance editor and saving the world one sentence fragment at a time teaching university writing classes. In her free time, Amy enjoys cooking, traveling, and testing which plant species best survive prolonged neglect. 

Connect with Amy:  LinkedIn

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The Friday Fix - January 22, 2016

Happy Friday Fix Day, fellow content marketers! Hopefully you’ve had a great week and a few laughs to boot; if not, we’ve got it on good authority that injecting your content marketing with humor can do your business some serious good. We also talk about when and why you should go global, how to think about content marketing in 2016, digital storytelling at the Sundance Film Festival, as well as tools and tips of the trade (such as what questions to ask to tell your story). So, grab an extra-large latte (because why not?) and kick back because it’s time to get your Friday Fix on.

Comedy & Content Marketing: A Q&A with Marketing Technologist Travis Wright

As one who loves to laugh, I think we all want to be funny…not like a dad joke at Thanksgiving “funny” but genuinely funny. This is something that Travis Wright who, among many things is also a stand-up comedian, and I agree on. In this article, Jennifer Taylor interviews Wright and explores the role of comedy –and comedians—in content marketing. They cover everything from when humor is appropriate to how to amend a faux pas when humor goes wrong (how could you betray us like this, humor!).

New Year, New Thinking in Content Marketing

venturebeat.com

venturebeat.com

There’s a saying that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. If you’re approaching content marketing with the same mindset year after year and expecting results that you’re not getting, then well, you’re not insane, but you do need Andrew Schulkind’s article, which suggests new ways for thinking about content marketing. These include digging into your niche, really understanding your customer, and focusing on quality, not quantity (to name a few mindsets).

Why a Global Content Strategy is Vital for Your Organization in 2016

Going global has come up before in past Friday Fixes, but this week, Ruben Sanchez revisits the discussion with new insight as well as new research that points out that as many as 64% of global companies don’t have a global content strategy (eek!). What a global strategy does for your organization, as Ruben tells it, is it protects the business from disruption, and it reflects success (43% of top-performing teams have a global strategy in place). So, I guess what he’s saying is that there’s no time like the present to start thinking outside of the box and to instead start thinking around the world (or at least figure out when you’ll be ready to think round).

Sundance’s First Digital Storytelling Conference Showcases the Best in Brand Videos

adweek.com

adweek.com

It’s a pretty exciting week for digital storytelling; this week, thanks to CEO of VMA Media Rick Parkhill. This week, digital storytelling will have representation at the Sundance Film Festival. In this article, James Cooper interviews Parkhill and gets his insight on everything from the mission of digital storytelling to its evolution to what marketers and agency executives are looking for (and more).

4 Content Marketing Methods to Stay above Your Competition

I love the quote at the beginning of Yoav Vilner’s article: “Promoting irrelevant content to your customer base is as useless as bringing a knife to a gunfight.” (Can I see that? Can someone set that up?) But seriously, per Yoav, there are four ways that winning companies are employing content marketing methods. They’re leveraging influencers; producing engaging, fluid digital stories; focusing on customer experience; and creating stories and content driven by the customer’s journey (this is a highly-intuitive step, so read Yoav’s article to fully grasp what he’s saying).

A Toolkit for Developing Your Content Marketing Strategy

If you’re a fan of the Friday Fix, then you know we’ve been promoting having a content strategy since the Fix’s inception. In this piece, Fenja Villeumier provides not only additional insight (like that the challenge is now a focused, target-aimed strategy) but also an in-depth analysis and review of exactly how the classic Boston Consulting Group (BCG) Matrix can be customized to ensure long-term content marketing success.

The 3 Types of Content Marketing

There are times when something is presented in such a way that you have an epiphany and suddenly, so much more clarity. I find that Rebecca Lieb’s article on the three types of content marketing is one of those things. We talk about content marketing, storytelling, various components, strategies, ROI…the list goes on, but we don’t always talk about underlining the purpose of the content. In this piece, Rebecca breaks down the nuts and bolts for the three types of content marketing: content that entertains; content that informs / educates; and content that provides tools / resources. 

Content Marketing is the Answer to Ad Blocking

I’m sorry, did you say ad blocking, author, Inti Tam? Take my money! I’m kidding…I don’t have any money, but seriously, as one who’s highly annoyed by popups, I’m all for being seduced into a company’s loyalty via content marketing. Of course, the prevalence of ad blocking as described by Tam means employing smart tactics for keeping the audience reading. Tam advises both breaking long content into “bite-sized” posts and embedding visual elements that tell the story.

What to Include in a Content Marketing Proposal

komarketingassociates.com

komarketingassociates.com

In this piece, Ryan Young reveals that 64% of marketing professionals intend to amp up their content marketing efforts in 2016, which makes sense considering everything we know about content marketing in this day and age. Anyway, as Ryan points out, regardless of what your role is (agency or in-house), you need a well-organized proposal that includes all of the right bits and pieces.

[BizTrends 2016] Tell Great Stories

That’s right folks, it’s 2016…time to tell great stories versus those mediocre yarns of 2015. I’m kidding. In this piece, Samantha Page talks about her experience as a storyteller and an editor and explains the little bit of insight that’s propelled her career, which is that “a great story will stay with your reader longer than any trend you’ll ever cover.” That’s something we’re all banking on, right? But how are we doing it? Before looking at content moments and the art of storytelling, Samantha revisits John Lewis’ Man on the Moon because it was that good and it fully exemplifies her point.

Storytelling 101: 5 Questions That Can Help You Find Your Story

storytelleragency.com

storytelleragency.com

So, what’s your story? This is more than a pick-up line from the ‘80s, it’s something you should ask yourself about your organization. It’s easy to look at dynamic, inspiration stories and to conclude that you either don’t have one or that yours is boring, but the reality is that everyone has a story and yours is probably better than you think (especially if you tell it right). Hence, we’re bringing in the pros. This week, we pose five questions that can help you discover your story and why it’s special.


Amy Delcambre is a freelance content and travel writer from Mobile, Alabama with a Master's in Creative Writing. When she's not painting the page with nouns, verbs, and adverbs, she's slaying grammar beasts as a freelance editor and saving the world one sentence fragment at a time teaching university writing classes. In her free time, Amy enjoys cooking, traveling, and testing which plant species best survive prolonged neglect. 

Connect with Amy:  LinkedIn

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