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halloween marketing

The Friday Fix - October 31, 2014

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The Friday Fix - October 31, 2014

BOO!  Happy Friday Fix-oween!  Prepare to feel treated as we give you the best of the best from this week in content marketing.  In addition to a couple of Halloween-inspired posts, we share how you can take advantage of the content marketing goldmine that is the holiday season; we also bring you the dirt on content marketing’s blooming relationship with social media (it’s getting serious, y’all).  We’ve also got a couple of tricks up our sleeve, like as you read, you’ll be engaging in a game of “song lyric roulette” where you have no idea which song will end up stuck in your head when you’re done! Muahahaha! Happy reading!

Why Social Media and Content Marketing are Perfect Partners
Social media and content marketing go together like ramalammalammakadinga da dinga dong. Why? Because, as Venchito Tampon tells us, social marketing supports the living daylights out of content…it’s what Barbara Hershey was to Bette Midler in Beaches…it’s the wind beneath its wings because of the way social media amplifies content.  It helps it fly…fly…fly high against the sky…. Once you get that song out of your head, read the post and see what the changchangchangittychangshoobop is all about.

5 Good Rules to Follow for Good Social Media SEO
To Venchito told us why the thing between content marketing and social media are the best pairing off of 2014 (sorry, Ashton and Mila), but Brad Kuenn gives us another important element, which is how to make this power couple work for you. He explains going beyond Facebook and Twitter, mobile optimization, and other clever approaches that rule.

What This 15-Year Old Scary Movie Teaches You about Content Marketing
Remember when it was the summer of ’99 and The Blair Witch Project was scaring the bejeebus out of everyone?  (That summer seemed to last forever.)  But, really, remember how huge it was? Well, John Rooney remembers and more importantly, he’s done the legwork on analyzing not only how and why Blair Witch was so riveting but also how you can incorporate some of their key budget-friendly tactics into getting your audience right where you want them(cue Vincent Price’s maniacal laughter).

The Dark Side of Content Marketing [Infographic]
It’s Halloween, so we’d be letting you down if we didn’t try to scare you at least a little; hence, we are sharing Verónica Maria Jarski’s visual stroll down the boulevard of broken content marketing dreams.  Here are some of the horrifying facts that lead straight to content marketing purgatory.  As many as 48% of marketers don’t have a documented strategy (scream), and only 60-70% of created B2B content is actually used (blood curdling scream).  Are you nailing closed your own coffin?  Read to ensure this lonely road isn’t one you’ll ever know.

5 Content Marketing Ideas for November 2014
Holidays are a veritable gold mine for content marketing campaigns, so if you missed making Halloween part of your action plan, get on board with Thanksgiving in November.  After all, November isn’t just about the big meal, it’s also about Veteran’s Day, bowl games, and Olympic-level shopping.  If you’re not sure how to get a piece of the pie (content marketing, not pumpkin, that is), take notes from Armando Roggio’s post.

7 Content Marketing Tips for When You Lack Time & Resources
Um yeah, so speaking of the holidays, we realize they can get really hairy leaving you with very little time to produce the quality of content you want to produce (as illustrated on the world’s best circle chart by Chuck Sharp in this very important read for the time-deprived).  The solution?No, it’s not skip repeat after you lather and rinse; it’s curate (good advice!), and Chuck provides seven tips for getting it so right, you’ll have time to repeat guilt-free.

Google’s “Panda 4.1” Update with Change Your Content Marketing Strategy
So, we know you’ve heard that new Panda 4.1 algorithms are going to shake things up (much the same way an actual panda in your office would), and if you’re not sure how or how to approach the changes, then consider this short, easy-to-read article by Warren Knight your information in shining armor. 

5 Reasons Why Content Marketing Will Always Triumph Link Building
As mentioned in the previous article, quality is going to be essential to pleasing the Panda.  In this piece, Dan Virgillito not only mentions the Panda, he mentions the Penguin and how quality content simply goes the distance with bringing in and satisfying customers.  Think of it this way: link building is the sprint; content marketing is the marathon.  Which race are you running?

10 Creative Ways to Reward Your Facebook Fans & Increase Engagement
It simply isn’t enough to have a social media presence; you have to interact via social media in a way that makes your audience feel like you care (because you really do care!).  Needless to say, it’s not a one-size-fits-all kind of world, and Massimo Chieruzzi gets that, which is why he’s offering up some really solid guidance on how you can sincerely interact with your audience via Facebook.

Why Content Marketing Won’t Solve Your Marketing Problem
If content is king, then why can’t it wave its magical scepter and solve all of your marketing problems (why!?)?  Well, as Fernando Labastida explains, content marketing is not a magician, at least not one that works alone.  You have to do some of that leg work, much of which involves getting to know and understand your customers like you know and understand your own friends and family.


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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6 Halloween Content Marketing Ideas that Always Work

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6 Halloween Content Marketing Ideas that Always Work

It’s almost Halloween! Which probably means a mad scramble to find an old costume that still fits in the closet, last minute decorations and candy run - only to pour some whiskey in a plastic “skull-goblet”, sit on the couch and eat said candy, wait for trick-or-treaters and try to keep devil-horns on the dogs – but enough about me… 

Odds are you’ve seen a share of Halloween-themed content this year. If you have a blog, or produce content, you’ve probably spent a few hour brainstorming new ideas that puts a spooky-spin on some otherwise dry topics.  With all the great content from last year, it’s a tough bar to raise for 2014. But don’t worry, here’s a look at some awesome Halloween content marketing ideas that always work:

1. Call for User-Generated Content

This might be the easiest way to get some great content for your website or blog.  Best of all, user-generated content gets your current followers talking and engaged with your brand. Via social media, ask your followers to share their Halloween plans, or run a contest for the best costume photos or Jack-O-Lantern carvings.

Even if your company’s products or services have nothing to do with pumpkin-carving or Power Ranger group-photos, this type of content is an incredibly effective way to increase engagement and boost traffic to your social media profiles or blog. In fact, publishing user-generated Halloween content to social channels can lead to 300% increases in website traffic.

EXAMPLE: 

Cheetos rebranded their mascotas a disobedient“bad-guy” who lures trouble for the sake of eating Cheetos. For Halloween last year, Cheetos launched the “TP Project” where users can throw digital toilet paper over various buildings in the spirit of Halloween, and their new mascot, Chester the Cheetah. This is a great example of interactive, user-generated content. 

2. Spin an Existing Product or Service 

If you sell products, or allow customers to sign-up for service plans directly from your website,   holidays are a great way to leverage existing offers and boost traffic or revenue to your site.  This strategy will obviously change depending on what your company sells, but there are endless ways to showcase existing products or services in a spooky, Halloween-themed way. Can you believe that the US Center for Disease Control (CDC) got over 77,000 Facebook likes from their “Disaster Preparedness 101: Zombie Apocalypse guide”? 

Apparently, no matter how boring the subject or industry, if you add a zombie or apocalyptic event to an existing free guide it still has a chance to go viral – thanks Walking Dead!

EXAMPLE:

The popular clothing shop, American Apparel, really made finding a Halloween costume easier last year with its very own Halloween shop. Here’s the cool spin – instead of cheesy, pre-made costumes sold at a premium – the American Apparel DIY Halloween Shop pairs existing items of clothing to create complete costume ensembles. How cool is that!? The large selection allows you to build any costume, from Scuba Dave, to Hippies, to endangered animals.

This is a great example of how using a holiday theme to spin existing offers can directly boost sales and provide value to the readersor existing customers at the same time.

3. Share Your Halloween Celebration

Followers on social media always love getting a behind-the-scenes look at their favorite brands. If your company plans on hosting any Halloween parties or costume contests within the office, be sure to get pictures or video of the celebration to use as awesome content. 

When you promote it through social media or other distribution channels, ask followers to share their own crazy Halloween content. This is a great way to humanize your brand and build a friendly relationship with potential customers.

EXAMPLE:

You might be familiar with Progressive’s extremely popular mascot, Flo.  But did you know that the insurance company provided a complete guide on how to dress as Flo for Halloween?

Knowing that a large audience followed them through social media, Progressive created downloadable PDFs, accessories, and costume accents to encourage people to dress like Flo and share their pictures online.  Think of the brand awareness that gets generated from some simple Halloween-themed content – wouldn’t it be nice to have thousands of people dress up as your mascot and do some urban-marketing all night for you? 

4. Create a Video 

Halloween is one of the few times when nearly any brand can be as silly, scary, or strange as they want. Videos can be short-story horror flicks, quick Vine’s that show spooky surprises in the office, or simply a staff-video wishing everyone a Happy Halloween – whatever you create, remember to keep a relaxed atmosphere and have fun!

Videos can improve your chances of creating content that generates a lot of views, increase your traffic, generate leads, and with a little luck - skyrocket to a viral Halloween content piece.

EXAMPLE:

In the height of Vine’s popularity, Tide used the distribution channel to create a series of short videos called “Scared Stainless” that showed why stains needed to be scared of Tide the stain remover. Of course, Tide cast itself in the traditional role of a slasher, and claiming helpless stains as its victim.

5. Holiday Themed Infographics                

An infographic is a graphic that conveys a visual representation of information using images and words. They are a great way to capture a variety of pieces of information and communicate them in an interesting and condensed format. They make for excellent content and are extremely popular these days.

The possibilities with infographics are nearly endless – add Frankenstein and Werewolf to the mix and they turn into epic pieces of art. Infographics are “top-tier” content, and are always shared throughout the holidays. Maybe American Apparel can create “The Most Popular Halloween Costumes of All Time” infographic based on their sales throughout the holiday? 

EXAMPLE:

Zombies, zombies, zombies – Halloween or not, when are you NOT worried about these little suckers causing an apocalypse? Luckily, REI has it covered; providing us with enough outdoor gear to create endless anti-zombie weaponry and tools.  If you aren’t an expert survivalist for the end of days, take advantage of REI’s zombie survival infographic- displaying possible procedures to use their gear as zombie-slaying tools.

6. Halloween Related Top List

One of my favorites - Top Lists always work due to the attention-grabbing headline. Any headline that lists a number of details, secrets, categories, or tips will work because it makes it very clear what the reader can expect when clicking on the article.

These types of posts are perfect for building your authority and demonstrating that you are the expert in the field, even if it’s a Halloween-themed post. Top Lists can be great pieces of content for reaching your marketing goals.

EXAMPLE:

Last year, Billboard did a great job compiling the “Top 10 Halloween Songs of All-Time”. This type of list was fun, it got readers to engage and discuss their favorite Halloween songs - but most importantly – provided Billboard.com with an awesome piece of content that is still being shared today.

Awesome Halloween Content for Great Marketing Treats 

Any one of these tricks has the ability to boost your content marketing success and your goals. Bottom line – as busy as the holidays can be, they give us the opportunity to have fun and lighten up a little bit, especially with the content we create.

Halloween gives marketers the chance to be silly, scary, and fun while still providing awesome content for readers. Remember to promote all your Halloween-themed content through social media, spot trending #hashtags and join the conversation.  Most importantly, track your successes and failures to drill down on your strategy to come back with more effective content next year.

What type of content do you most look forward to around the holidays?


Brad Kuenn is a Content Writer, Editor and Strategist living in Nashville, Tennessee, and he provides research, content topics, writing, editing, and content development expertise to clients. He has a passion for writing as well as art, which shines through in his work. His creativity and attention to detail makes him a valuable asset for a wide range of clients. During his time off he enjoys spending time with his wife, family, and his two dogs Brutus and Kane. 
Connect with Brad:  Twitter   LinkedIn   Google+

 

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