Happy Friday Fix Day & Happy Halloween! Hard to believe that the holiday season is about to officially kick into high gear; it’s also hard to believe the quantity of Halloween candy I’ve put away in the past month, but let’s not think about that now, yes? Instead, let’s focus on the highlights of today’s Fix. Not only do we talk about why you want to use babies and animals in your strategy, but we also share ideas for your November content. Additionally, we explore content storytelling strategies that work and how brands like Apple, Net-A-Porter, and Humans of New York are nailing it and providing “contagious” content. Today’s Fix is sweeter than that addictive bowl of Halloween candy but with zero calories, so dig in!
Bryan Adams’ revelation in this piece that Apple’s allure resides in its storytelling; however, up to now, I’d previously been convinced it’s because they’re products are so simple and clean looking –like how I wish my life was. I figured that was why I was powerless to resist the almighty Apple (like Eve in the Garden of Eden…okay, this is taking a weird turn…where was I?). Oh, right Apple. Apple has the ability to tell emotional stories in few or no words; simplicity and connection are key as is answering the question why.
Unless today is your first day in content marketing, then you know, as does the author of this article Jon Simmons, that video is a vital resource in telling a killer brand story (consequently, if it is your first day, welcome to the Friday Fix!). With over 38.2 billion videos being streamed per year, we can conclude that video gets a lot of audience attention, so how do you use it to tell your brand story? Well, start with a script; plan and look to existing stories in your repertoire to assist with ideation. Also, read this article to get a deeper understanding of exactly how video elevates your brand story to a new level.
If your own level of mobile versus desktop activity isn’t any indication, then let Krystal Overmeyer’s article clue you in on just how big this whole mobile thing is (and is still getting). She shares that 39 of the top 50 digital news sites get more mobile traffic than desktop. In fact, in case you’re not already aware, “mobile editor” is actually a thing because it’s of increasing importance that your stories are targeted to reach a mobile audience. Check out this piece to see what tricks of the trade publishers regularly apply that can help you with your mobile marketing and storytelling.
Mark Masters’ article leapt out of me because I feel that to advise against telling the truth can be dangerous territory. In this piece, Mark isn’t advocating lying for the sake of lying but rather he argues that creating an emotional story that resonates with the audience is more valuable. He uses an example from Hollister and then his own marriage proposal. As one who didn’t have a fairy-tale proposal, I understand what he means; sometimes, the emotion is more important than actual events. He seals the deal by quoting Mark Twain: “never let the truth get in the way of a good story.” Keep in mind that if you take this path, even if it’s not true, your story still has to be authentic.
We’ve talked about site Net-A-Porter before and it’s back. As Sarah Jones explains, the site has, like other sites, blended the shoppable content with the editorial. The rationale should be obvious as one site (Penhaligon) that Jones writes about sees better sales from the audience who also reads the blogs. This makes complete sense; check out the article to see why.
Let’s face it, not all brands are created equally; some are simply better at being “out there” more than others as Mike O’Brien points out. So, what do these brands have in common that make them so popular they’re downright contagious? Well, first is that they’ve humanized their brand; they share a post from Humans of New York, which is one of the most feel-good things on the Internet and is 100% contagious per O’Brien. Two is that fans are incorporated, and three is that these brands remember it’s social media. This article references several brands that are nailing this while giving insight for how you can do it, too.
You’ve probably heard that content marketing is essential; if so, you’re right. It really is critical even if you’re looking to establish an online presence, brand loyalty, and all of that other good stuff. There’s no one recipe fits all for content marketing; however, there are some tactics that any business should apply. In this piece, Yoav Vilner highlights three: staying current, investing in an editorial team, and setting aside a content marketing budget.
November (read, the holiday season among other things) is upon us. There’s nothing savvier than using what’s trending as a component of your content marketing strategy. In this piece, Armando Roggio has give suggestions for ways to weave November’s highlights into your content marketing. Thanksgiving, Veteran’s Day, and No Shave November (even French’s mustard is promoting No Shave November) are three. The fact that it’s National Novel Writing Month and the November release of latest James Bond flick Spectre are the other two.
Sometimes, you have a month like November jam-packed with ideas to weave into your strategy; other times, it feels like all of the great ideas flew south for the winter and left you stranded. Here Brian Honigman doesn’t tell you what ideas to cut and paste into your strategy (nor should he); instead, he gives something much more useful: a roadmap to finding ideas. Start by clearly defining your brand and doing demographic research.
Not to burst anyone’s bubble, but sometimes content marketing doesn’t work. In this article, Cristina Callahan explains that there are certain mistakes that one can make that can cause the content marketing machine to grind to a halt (possibly referring to it as a machine is one). Lacking in strategy, consistency, quality, or investment are the four ways to guarantee your content marketing will stall out in the middle of the road. In other words, for content marketing to work, you have to have drive, and you have to be willing to work on your vehicle to keep things moving forward.
It’s an almost universally accepted truth that no matter who you are, a good baby or animal image or video will either give you a big laugh or the warm fuzzies or both. Even if you never aspire to have babies or animals because you just love a clean house, you still appreciate them in the content you consume. Why? Easy…babies and animals tug at the heart strings (has anyone seen the recent video of the baby learning to see for the first time? Grown men admit to weeping.). Check out this piece and learn how to let babies and animals help you bring all the feelings to the yard.
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.
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