Blog

Contagious Content Marketing: How to Give Your Content Viral Potential

0
This post was originally published on this site

For some marketers, going viral is the holy grail of content marketing. It’s easy to see why. You put out content, people organically start sharing it, and it takes off until you’ve racked up millions of views. Millions of brand impressions without a penny in paid promotion. You can’t blame marketers for chasing that particular dragon.

That said, it’s important to get one thing straight: “Going viral” is not a content marketing strategy. It’s a pleasant side effect that can happen with well-crafted content, yes. But the chance of virality is no substitute for well-researched, relevant content amplified to the most relevant audience through organic, paid, and influencer channels.

If you’re planning on going viral to get your content seen, you’re playing the lottery instead of investing in your brand’s future.

However, by happy coincidence, the attributes that give your content viral potential are also hallmarks of great content. Creating shareworthy content as part of your overall strategy is a great idea, whether or not you hit the viral jackpot.

Here are six ways to create great content that just might go viral, complete with examples to inspire you.

#1: Make Data Beautiful

The average person today has more data available to them than anyone has at any other point in history. It’s an ocean of facts, figures, and statistics, and most of us are drowning instead of surfing. If you can take information that’s relevant to a large audience and display it in a beautiful, functional form, you have a good chance at racking up the shares.

Example 1: Infant Sleeping Patterns

This example is from an individual rather than a brand, but it’s too good to leave out. Redditor Andrew Elliot tracked his newborn infant’s sleep patterns for the first four months of her life, then charted the data in a unique circular format. The circle represents a 24-hour clock, with midnight at the top and noon at the bottom. A spiraling line tracks the infant’s sleeping and waking cycles, blue for sleep and orange for awake, starting in the center. Each complete revolution represents a single day.

At a glance, you can see how the early days are chaotic, but by the latter revolutions, the daytime hours are mostly awake and nighttime is mostly asleep. Andrew’s data visualization hit the front page on Reddit, and is still the top rated post in /r/informationisbeautiful, with over 51,000 upvotes.

Example 2: The Daily Routines of Famous Creative People

For a more commercial example, project management software company Podio converted a blog post into an interactive visualization of how famous creative types spent their days.

Not only is the graphic beautiful and informative (and the interactivity is top-notch), it’s relevant to Podio’s potential audience. They help people organize time to be more productive, so someone with an interest in how famous creatives managed their time might also be interested in their solution.

Podio’s nifty visualization picked up over 45,000 shares on Facebook.

#2: Take a Stand

A recent survey of over 1,000 consumers sought to discover what makes people form an emotional connection with a brand. The top two reasons people connected with a brand were:

  1. I feel like they care about people like me.
  2. I feel like they are making a positive difference in the world.

If we want to make an emotional connection with our audience—and who doesn’t—it’s important to think beyond the product-pain point interaction. Content that takes a stand on an important issue covers both of the two reasons above, and definitely has viral potential.

Example 1: REI, #OptOutside

In 2015, sporting goods retailer REI created a viral marketing campaign by doing something truly unexpected: Closing its doors on the busiest retail day of the year. The brand announced that its stores would stay closed on Black Friday. Then they introduced the #optoutside campaign to encourage people to enjoy the great outdoors the day after Thanksgiving, instead of trampling people to buy a flat-screen TV.

It was a bold decision, not without backlash, and missing the day’s revenue was definitely a sacrifice for the chain. But the campaign went viral, with thousands trading the hashtag and signing up for the #optoutside movement on REI’s microsite.

REI’s stand resonated with their target audience and caught a wave of popular sentiment. The campaign is still going strong two years after the fact.

Example 2: Always, #LikeAGirl  

I’ve written about this campaign before, but it deserves a mention in any discussion of viral branded content. It’s a stellar example of how far a brand can stray from their product offering and still be hyper-relevant to their target audience.

Always sells feminine hygiene products. Therefore, their audience is women. Therefore, anything that’s relevant to women is relevant to the brand.

So Always took a firm stand on the way women are subtly demeaned in society, taking the epithet “you [do something] like a girl” and turning it into empowerment:

<iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/XjJQBjWYDTs” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

Always’ target audience loved the message and shared it, and the video racked up more than 64 million views. And it still makes me cry.

#3: Get Silly

One of my favorite quotes about humor in marketing comes from Tim Washer: “For those of you who think comedy won’t work for your brand, ask yourself: Will it work for your customers?”

By my estimation, 99.9% of people enjoy a good laugh. It only takes a few people to like and share your hilarious content to start it on the way to full-fledged virality. Granted, humor can be tricky—there’s tone, audience, and appropriateness to consider. But when you get it right, you can create something that’s sublimely silly and still gets your message across.

Example 1: Old Spice, “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like”

How do you communicate through a computer monitor the way your body wash smells? Old Spice seems to have considered the problem, and opted to punt. They built a commercial around “the man your man could smell like,” a studly muscle man who travels through a rapid-fire set of wish-fulfillment scenarios, from a shower to a boat to horseback in 30 seconds.

<iframe width=”854″ height=”480″ src=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/owGykVbfgUE” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

This video was inescapable back in 2010, with over 55 million views on YouTube, and it helped launch an entirely new creative direction for Old Spice.

Example 2: Metro Trains Melbourne, “Dumb Ways to Die”

The traditional form of railway public safety ads is to introduce a smiling couple, or a cheeky kid, then have them brutally killed in a grisly railway accident. They’re not ads meant to be enjoyed; they’re meant to scare the pants off of you.

Metro Trains Melbourne decided to trade the horror for something silly and adorable instead, and “Dumb Ways to Die” was born:

<iframe width=”640″ height=”480″ src=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/IJNR2EpS0jw” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

The catchy tune and cartoon mayhem earned over 100 million views on YouTube, the song landed in the Top 10 Downloads chart on iTunes, and a spinoff app got over 10 million downloads. Best of all, the content actually accomplished a purpose beyond virality: Metro Trains Melbourne says the campaign helped reduce train accidents by 30%.

#4: Warm Some Hearts

Think about consumer-produced content that goes viral. Now subtract the cute animal videos and the “hilarious injury” stuff. What’s left is heartwarming human-interest stories. Think Chewbacca Mom, or the kid who loves garbage trucks, or 95% of the stuff on Upworthy.

How can brands bring a little heartwarming human interest to the mix? Here are two of my favorite examples.

Example 1: Volkswagen, “The Fast Lane”

This viral video from Volkswagen works on two levels. First, they did a real-life publicity stunt: They installed a slide on the stairs at a busy commuter train hub and encouraged people to use it. Then they filmed people’s responses and edited together an uplifting video:

<iframe width=”854″ height=”480″ src=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/W4o0ZVeixYU” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

There are kids delighted to see the slide, adults a little scared of the slide, and business executives in three-piece suits taking a ride, briefcases on their laps. You can sense how much fun the stunt was for everyone involved, and if the video doesn’t make you smile, your face may be on too tight.

Example 2: American Greetings, “World’s Toughest Job”

What would you say to a job with no salary, no benefits, and 24-hour on-call demands? Would your response even be printable? That’s the question American Greetings asked unsuspecting consumers in this video. The reveal: The thankless, uncompensated job is being a mother. Watch the reactions when people figure it out, and have a hankie nearby:

<iframe width=”854″ height=”480″ src=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/HB3xM93rXbY” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

The message is clear from a brand standpoint. Buy a card and send it to mom. But the human interest elevates it beyond a promotional message—as more than 27 million viewers demonstrated.

Aspire to Virality – But Don’t Ditch the Strategy

I’ll say it one more time: going viral is not a valid content marketing strategy. Viral is not a go-to amplification channel. If someone asks you to create viral content, tell them as much. And if someone promises to make something go viral for you, take that with an entire shaker of salt.

Instead of counting on going viral, take lessons from widely-shared content and use them to build content that will succeed with your target audience, whether or not it hits the zeitgeist and ends up on Ellen. Telling stories with data, taking a stand, and adding humor and human interest are all fundamental building blocks of great content marketing.

Learn more about creating a stellar content experience with our new quiz.

How to Optimize Your Facebook Page for Product Sales

0
This post was originally published on this site

social media how toDo you want to sell on Facebook?

Wondering how to increase product sales without investing in Facebook ads?

In this article, you’ll discover how to organically optimize your Facebook page for more sales.

How to Optimize Your Facebook Page for Product Sales by Ana Gotter on Social Media Examiner.

How to Optimize Your Facebook Page for Product Sales by Ana Gotter on Social Media Examiner.

#1: Choose the Right Facebook Page Type and Category

Every business is different, and how you optimize your Facebook page for sales depends on what you sell and how you sell it. For example, a consultant needs people to book appointments, a restaurant or hair salon wants to drive customers to their physical location, and an ecommerce business sells products online.

Facebook has pre-made page templates to help you promote your products most effectively. To find these templates, go to Settings and click Edit Page on the left.

To change your Facebook page template, go to Edit Page in your Settings.

To change your Facebook page template, go to Edit Page in your Settings.

Pages automatically start with the “default” template but you can change it to any of the following:

  • Services
  • Shopping
  • Business
  • Politicians
  • Venues
  • Nonprofits
  • Restaurants and Cafes

Before you select a different template, look at the recommended settings for the template (including the order of the tabs). Changing the template will automatically change your call to action (CTA) and the buttons available on the toolbar. Any existing tabs you have that don’t fit into the template may also be erased.

To explore the different templates, click the Edit button to the right of your existing template.

Click the Edit button to change the template of your Facebook page.

Click the Edit button to change the template of your Facebook page.

In the pop-up box, scroll down to the template you’re interested in and click View Details.

Click View Details to see more information about a Facebook page template.

Click View Details to see more information about a Facebook page template.

Review the recommended settings for the template, and if needed, adjust your page manually before you apply the template.

Different Facebook page templates have different CTAs, toolbar buttons, and tabs specifically chosen and organized for the business type.

Different Facebook page templates have different CTAs, toolbar buttons, and tabs specifically chosen and organized for the business type.

Only the Services and Shopping templates have built-in Shop sections, which allow you to extensively feature products on Facebook. However, you can manually add the Shop or Services tab to any template.

To do this, scroll to the bottom of the Edit Page section. At the bottom of the list of existing tabs on your page, click Add a Tab.

You can manually add any tab to your Facebook page, even if it isn't automatically part of your page's template.

You can manually add any tab to your Facebook page, even if it isn’t automatically part of your page’s template.

Then choose which tabs to add to your site.

Adding a Shop or Services tab to your Facebook page can help you showcase your products, encouraging more sales.

Adding a Shop or Services tab to your Facebook page can help you showcase your products, encouraging more sales.

#2: Select a Sales-Oriented CTA Button

Your page’s Call to Action (CTA) button sets the stage for the main action you want users to carry out. Do you want them to shop your products or call you to book an appointment? Choose the best CTA button for your business.

Choosing the right CTA button for your Facebook page will increase the likelihood that users move closer to converting and purchasing.

Choosing the right CTA button for your Facebook page will increase the likelihood that users move closer to converting and purchasing.

To change your CTA button, click it on your page. You’ll then see a ton of different options you can choose from.

You can choose from a large number of CTA buttons for your Facebook page.

You can choose from a large number of CTA buttons for your Facebook page.

While you likely know which CTA to choose for your business, here are some general guidelines:

Select Book Services if your services are fairly straightforward and you want to optimize for appointments.

Choose from the Get in Touch options if your business can reliably and quickly answer on Facebook, and the best way to win over customers is one-on-one communication. Great examples of businesses that would find this option useful include boutique fitness studios, freelancers, and consultants.

Choose Shop Now if (like Book Services) your business sells products that can be bought fairly quickly and without needing a lot of questions answered first.

Add the Shop Now button to your Facebook page to make it easy for users to buy from you.

Add the Shop Now button to your Facebook page to make it easy for users to buy from you.

Opt for Start Order or other customized food delivery CTAs if you’re a restaurant looking to optimize for takeout or delivery orders.

Pick a Learn More option if your products or services are complex, high-priced, or unfamiliar to users. They’ll be more likely to click Learn More than Sign Up if they’re unfamiliar with your business or product; it’s a lower-pressure option.

After you decide on your CTA, you’ll need to set it up. For Contact Us, as an illustration, enter a specific Contact Me page through which users can send you emails.

Finish setting up your Facebook CTA button with links or contact information so it's fully functional.

Finish setting up your Facebook CTA button with links or contact information so it’s fully functional.

#3: Set Up a Shop Section

If you want to sell products more directly from Facebook, setting up a Shop section (if applicable to your business) is the best way to do this.

Go to the Shop tab to create your Facebook storefront. First, agree to the Merchant Terms and Policies.

Agree to the Merchant Terms and Policies to set up your Facebook Shop section.

Agree to the Merchant Terms and Policies to set up your Facebook Shop section.

Next, choose your checkout method. You can choose from two options: allow people to purchase from you through Facebook or by navigating to your site when they click on a product. For this example, we’ll illustrate the latter.

Facebook lets you choose if you want users to check out on Facebook or to send them to your site to check out.

Facebook lets you choose if you want users to check out on Facebook or to send them to your site to check out.

Now fill out the “describe what you sell” section with information about your business and products so first-time users will feel more comfortable buying from you.

Describe your products on your Facebook storefront to help increase sales.

Describe your products on your Facebook storefront to help increase sales.

Click Add Products to start adding products to your shop. You can add multiple photos, prices (even an on-sale price), a description, and a link where users can go to purchase the item. Organizing products into collections makes it easy for users to shop.

You can add temporary sale prices to products as needed.

You can add temporary sale prices to products as needed.

When you add products to your shop, you can have them shared to your timeline automatically. If you add a new product you want users to know about, this can encourage immediate sales. You can edit and share both your products and shop at any time.

You can group individual products into collections and edit them at any time.

You can group individual products into collections and edit them at any time.

For advice about how to fully set up a great Facebook shop, check out some best practices.

#4: Tag Products From Your Shop in Photos and Videos

Many businesses have pictures and videos featuring their products and services. Now you can tag your visual content and posts on the platform with your products, including your cover photo.

When you click on your cover photo, for instance, you see the option to tag products from your shop. Click the Tag Products button.

Make sure you click Tag Products instead of Tag Photo.

Make sure you click Tag Products instead of Tag Photo.

Then click on a product in your cover photo. When you start to type in the product name, products from your shop will pop up.

You can tag products that exist in your Facebook shop, which will automatically pop up to tag in the search bar.

You can tag products that exist in your Facebook shop, which will automatically pop up to tag in the search bar.

You’ll see the Tag Products option whether or not you have a shop set up, but there’s a difference in the tags. If you have a shop, you can tag products like people; when users click, it takes them to the product page you’ve created on Facebook.

When users hover over the image, a

When users hover over the image, a “products shown” label appears for the image.

If you don’t have a shop and products listed, users will just see the name of the product when they hover over it. This is still an advantage because users can identify products they like and go searching on their own.

Even if you don't have a Facebook shop, tagging your products can help users identify them, making it easier to find products on your own site.

Even if you don’t have a Facebook shop, tagging your products can help users identify them, making it easier to find products on your own site.

#5: Enable Customer Reviews

Enabling reviews on your Facebook page is one of the best things you can do for your business when you want to increase conversions. Customers don’t necessarily trust what businesses say about themselves; however, they do want to hear what actual customers think.

If your business has positive reviews from customers, first-time visitors will be more likely to convert. As an added bonus, some reviewers will even recommend specific products or services, encouraging other users to try them.

Reviewers can vouch for not only your business but also certain products, which can increase sales.

Reviewers can vouch for not only your business but also certain products, which can increase sales.

To check that reviews are enabled for your page, go to Settings and click Edit Page. Then scroll down to the Reviews tab and click the Settings button.

In your Facebook page Settings, click the Settings button next to the Review tab.

In your Facebook page Settings, click the Settings button next to the Review tab.

Make sure your reviews are set to On.

Enable Facebook reviews by selecting On next to Show Reviews.

Enable Facebook reviews by selecting On next to Show Reviews.

Final Thoughts

If you want to sell more on Facebook, start by optimizing your business page. Whether people are searching for a business like yours or stumble onto your page after seeing a friend interact with it, your page may be the first point of contact for new users. Because of this, it’s essential to set up your page to nudge users toward conversion at all points of the digital sales funnel.

What do you think? How do you optimize your Facebook page for more sales? What’s helped you increase your conversions? Leave us a comment and let us know what you think!

How to Optimize Your Facebook Page for Product Sales by Ana Gotter on Social Media Examiner.

How to Optimize Your Facebook Page for Product Sales by Ana Gotter on Social Media Examiner.

Related Posts

Paint by Numbers: Using Data to Produce Great Content

0
This post was originally published on this site

It’s not every day that I write about content. To be honest, it’s probably a once-a-year kind of thing. I will readily admit that I’m a “links are king” kind of SEO, and have been since starting in this industry more than a decade ago. However, I do look over the fence from time to time to see if the grass is greener and, on occasion, I actually like what I see. Prior to joining Moz, I was a consultant at an agency like many of you reading this blog post. More often than not, one of the key concerns of my clients was what to write about. It seems that webmasters and business owners alike can easily acquire writer’s block after trudging through the uninspiring task of turning a list of keywords into website copy. So where do you look when you have run out of words

Numbers.

Alright, stick with me here. I imagine for some of you the idea of poring over numbers to remedy writer’s block would be like trying to stop a headache with a brick. It’s adding insult to injury. What I hope to show you in the next couple of paragraphs is how data can be an incredible source of inspiration in writing, especially if you can hit a few key principles: expose, relate, surprise, and share.

Expose

Chances are your business or website generates some amount of unique, first party data that you can expose to the world. It might be from analytics, your rank tracker like Moz, or from raw user data if you operate a forum. I’ll give you examples of how you might tap into these resources (especially when they don’t seem obvious or plenteous) but let’s start with a canonical example of one great use of first-party data in an industry that seems directly at odds with — dating.

The thought of quantifying and analyzing our love lives seems like an oxymoron of sorts. However, one of the most successful uses of data for content has been produced by the team at OK Cupid, whose “data”-tagged blog posts have earned thousands of solid backlinks and enviable traffic. The team at OK Cupid accomplishes this by tapping their huge resource for unique data, generated by their user base. Let’s look at one quick example: Congrats Graduates: No One Gives a Sh*t.

22% of female and 16% of male millenials say a college degree is mandatory for dating.

The blog post is fairly straightforward (and not particularly long) but it used unique data that isn’t really available to the average person. Because OK Cupid is in a privileged position, they can provide this kind of insight to their audience at large.

But maybe you don’t have a million customers with profiles on your site; where can you look for first party data? Well, here are a couple of ideas of the types of data your company or organization might have which can easily be turned into interesting content:

  • Google Analytics, Search Console data and Adwords data: Do you see trends around holidays that are interesting? Perhaps you notice that more people search for certain keywords at certain times. This could be even more interesting if there’s a local holiday (like a festival or event) that makes your data unique from the rest of the country.
  • Sales data: When do your sales go up or down? Do they coincide with events? Or do they happen to coincide with completely different types of keywords? Try using Google Correlate, which will identify keywords that follow the same patterns as your data.
  • Survey data: Use your sales or lead history to run surveys and generate insightful content.
    • A clothing store could compare responses to questions about personality by the colors of clothing that people purchase (Potential headline: Is It True What They Say About Red?)
    • A car parts store could compare the size of certain accessories to favorite sports (Potential headline: Big Trucks and Big Hits)
    • An insurance provider could compare the type of insurance requested vs. the level of education (Potential headline: What Smart People Do Differently with Insurance)

There are probably tons more sources of unique, first-party data that you or your business have generated over the years which can be turned into great content. If you dig through the data long enough, you’ll hit pay dirt.

Relate

Data is foreign. It’s a language almost no one speaks in their day-to-day conversations, a notation meant for machines. This consideration requires that we make data immediately relatable to our readers. We shouldn’t just ask “What does the data say?”, but instead “What does the data say to me?” How we make data relatable is simple — organize your data by how people identify themselves. This can be geographic, economic, biological, social, or cultural distinctions with which we regularly categorize ourselves.

Many of the best examples of this kind of strategy involve geography (perhaps because everyone lives somewhere, and it’s pretty non-controversial to make generic claims about one location or another). Take a look at a map of your country and try not to look first towards where you live. I’m a North Carolinian, and I almost immediately find myself interested in anything that compares my state to others.

So maybe you aren’t OK Cupid with millions of users and you can’t find unique data to share — don’t worry, there’s still hope. The example below is a rather ingenious method of using Google Adwords data to build a geographical story that’s relatable to any potential customer in the United States. The webmasters at Opulent used state-level Keyword Planner to visualize popularity across the country in a piece they call the “State of Style.

When I found this on Reddit’s DataIsBeautiful (where most of these examples come from), I immediately checked to see what performed best in North Carolina. I honestly couldn’t care less about popular fashion or jewelry brands, but my interest in North Carolina eclipsed that lack of interest. Geography-based data visualization has produced successful content related to in sports, politics, beer, and even knitting.

If you walk away with any practical ideas from this post, I think this example has got to be it. Fire up an Adwords campaign and find out how consumer demand breaks down in your industry at a state-by-state level. Are you a marketer and want to attract clients in a particular sector? Here’s your chance to write a whitepaper on national demand. If you’re a local business, you can target Google Keyword Planner to your city and compare it to other cities around the country.

Surprise

Perhaps the greatest opportunity with data-focused content is the chance to truly surprise your reader. There’s something exciting about learning an interesting fact (who hasn’t seen one of these lying around and didn’t pick it up?). So, how do you make your data “pop?” How do you make numbers fascinating?

Perspective.

Let’s start with a simple statistic:

The cost of ending polio between 2013 and 2018 is

$5.5 Billion Dollars.

How does that number feel to you? Does it feel big or little? Is it interesting on its own? Probably not, let’s try and spice it up a bit.

$5.5 billion dollars doesn’t seem that much when you realize people spend that amount on iPhones every 2 weeks. We could rid the world of polio for that much! Or, what if we present it like this…

In this light, it seems almost insane to spend that much money preventing just a couple more polio cases relative to the huge gains we could make on malaria. Of course, the statistics don’t tell the full story. Polio is in the end-stages of eradication where the cost-per-case is much higher, and as malaria is attacked, it too will see cost-per-case increase. But the point remains the same: by giving the polio numbers some sort of context, some sort of forced perspective, we make the data far more intriguing and appealing.

So how would this work with content for your own site? Let’s look at an example from BestPlay.co, which wrote a piece on Board Games are Getting Worse. Board games aren’t a data-centric industry, but that doesn’t keep them from producing awesome content with data. Here’s a generic graph they provide in the piece which shows off average board game ratings.

There really isn’t much to see here. There’s nothing intrinsically shocking about the data as we look at it. So how do they add perspective to make their point and give the user intrigue? Simple — apply a historical perspective.

With this historical perspective, we can see board game scores getting better and better up until 2012, when they began to take a dive — the first multi-year dive in their recorded history. To draw users in, you use comparison to provide surprising perspectives.

Share

This final method is the one that I think is most overlooked. Once you’ve created your fancy piece of content, let your audience do some leg work for you by releasing the data set. There’s an entire community of the Internet just looking for great data sets which could take advantage of your data and cite your content in their own publications. You can find everything from All of Donald Trump’s Tweets to Everything Lost at TSA to Hand-drawn Pictures of Pineapples. While there is a good chance your data set won’t ever be used, it can pick up a couple of extra links in the event that it does.

Putting it all together

What happens when a webmaster combines these types of methods — exposing unique data, making it relatable and surprising, even for a topic that seems averse to data? You get something like this: Jeans vs. Leggings.

This piece played the geography card for relatability:

They compared user interest in jeans to give perspective to the growth of demand for leggings:

Slice.com reveals their first-party data to make interesting, data-driven content that ultimately scores them links from sites like In Style Magazine, Shape.com, and the NY Post. Looking at fashion through the lens of data meant great traffic and great shares.

How do I get started?

Get down and dirty with the data. Don’t wait until you end up with a nice report in your hand, but start slicing and dicing things looking for interesting patterns or results. You can start with the data you already have: Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Google Adwords, and, if you’re a Moz customer, even your rank tracking data or keyword research data. If none of these avenues work, dig through the amazing data resources found on Reddit or WebHose. Look for a story in the numbers by relating the data to your audience and making comparisons to provide perspective. It isn’t a foolproof formula, but it is pretty close. The right slice of data will cut straight through writer’s block.

Instagram Live Replays, Periscope Super Hearts, Snap Map, and Pinterest Lens Camera Updates

0
This post was originally published on this site

social media researchWelcome to this week’s edition of the Social Media Marketing Talk Show, a news show for marketers who want to stay on the leading edge of social media.

On this week’s Social Media Marketing Talk Show with Erik Fisher and Kim Reynolds, we explore Instagram live replays with Jeff Sieh, Periscope super hearts with Luria Petrucci, Snapchat’s Snap Map with Shaun Ayala, Pinterest Lens Camera tools with Alisa Meredith, and other breaking social media marketing news of the week!

Watch the Social Media Morning Talk Show

If you’re new to the show, click on the green “Watch replay” button below and sign in or register to watch our latest episode from Friday, June 23, 2017.

For this week’s top stories, you’ll find timestamps below that allow you to fast-forward in the replay above.

Periscope Launches Super Hearts and Announces the Super Broadcaster Program: Periscope rolls out super hearts, a new paid form of commenting that allows viewers to celebrate and support their favorite broadcasters. Viewers can purchase an in-app currency through the iOS App Store or Google Play Store and use the “coins” to buy and send live broadcasters super hearts. Each super heart is worth a different value and contributes to a broadcaster’s overall “star balance.” Periscope also announced its new Super Broadcaster Program, which allows approved broadcasters to exchange their star balance for cash. The new program is currently only available in the U.S., but it’s expected to roll out internationally “soon.” (6:20)

Periscope rolls out Super Hearts, virtual gifts you can give and receive during live broadcasts.

Periscope rolls out super hearts, virtual gifts you can give and receive during live broadcasts.

Instagram Stories Reaches 250M Daily Active Users and Adds Live Video Replays: Instagram introduced the ability to share live video replays to Instagram Stories for 24 hours with a new Share button found at the bottom of the screen once a broadcast ends. Instagram also announced that Stories now boasts 250 million daily active users, which is “up from 200 million in April, 150 million in January and 100 million in October after launching the Snapchat Stories clone in August.” (26:00)

Instagram introduced the ability to share a live video replay to Instagram Stories for 24 hours.

Instagram introduced the ability to share a live video replay to Instagram Stories for 24 hours.

Snapchat Rolls Out Snap Map: Snapchat built “a whole new way to explore the world” with Snap Map. Snap Map gives users the option to share their current location and location-based content with one another when the app is opened. Snap Map is rolling out globally to all users. (38:10)

Time Warner Agrees to Create Original Programming and Ad Revenue for Snapchat: Time Warner and Snap Inc. announced a new deal valued at about $100 million that will increase both ad spending and original, made-for-Snapchat programming over the next two years. The shows are expected to span a wide range of genres including scripted dramas, daily news shows, comedy, and more. TechCrunch also reports that Time Warner is investing in Snap ads from its other properties like HBO, Turner, and Warner Bros. (43:38)

Pinterest Updates Lens Camera Tools and Features: Pinterest rolled out a “fresh look for Lens” with “more helpful tools and a newly heightened sense of style.” These new tools include new zoom and focus features that allow users to “pinpoint exactly what [they]’re looking for” in a photo, the ability to directly access the latest photos from the camera roll, and an Instant Ideas button on Lens results. Pinterest also announced that it has “doubled the number of categories Lens has been trained to recognize” over the last month. (46:42)

Pinterest rolled out a fresh look for Lens with more helpful tools and a newly heightened sense of style.

Pinterest rolled out a “fresh look for Lens” with “more helpful tools and a newly heightened sense of style.”

Facebook Tests New Tools for Managing Profile Photos: Facebook is piloting a set of new tools in India that allows users to have “more control over who can download and share their profile pictures” and “more easily add designs to profile pictures,” which has been shown to deter misuse. This experiment is currently limited to users in India but Facebook hopes to expand it to other countries “soon.”

Facebook pilots new tools for managing profile photos in India.

Facebook pilots new tools for managing profile photos in India.

LinkedIn Makes Comments More Visual: LinkedIn added the ability to include images within comments shared on its platform “to give you a richer, more expressive way to have conversations.”

LinkedIn added the ability to include images with comments shared on its platform

LinkedIn added the ability to include images with comments shared on its platform.

LinkedIn Rolls Out New Search Feature to Boost Job Opportunities: LinkedIn updated its search capabilities to make it easier to discover new jobs and professional opportunities. With the new Search Appearances feature on mobile and desktop, members can now see how many people have found them through a LinkedIn search, as well as their companies and job titles. LinkedIn is working to bring “even more insights such as the keywords that other members are searching to discover your profile” in the future.

LinkedIn rolled out a new search feature on mobile and desktop that makes it easier to be found for new jobs or professional opportunities.

LinkedIn rolled out a new search feature on mobile and desktop that makes it easier to be found for new jobs or professional opportunities.

Spotify Bot Allows Groups to Build Playlists on Facebook Messenger: Spotify expanded the functionality within its Facebook Messenger bot to allow groups to build playlists directly from within the Messenger app. Although Spotify already supported collaborative playlists across devices and platforms prior to this update, Group Playlists for Messenger is the company’s first attempt at allowing users to seamlessly share music and build “their perfect mix” without leaving the Messenger app.

Spotify expanded the functionality within its Messenger bot to allow groups to build playlists directly from within the Messenger app.

Spotify expanded the functionality within its Messenger bot to allow groups to build playlists directly from within the Messenger app.

Ticketmaster Launches New Facebook Messenger Bot: Ticketmaster released a new Facebook Messenger bot that uses natural language processing to generate responses and shows every event that Ticketmaster is serving up in a specific area, all within the app. TechCrunch reports that the Ticketmaster bot also responds to requests about the schedule for specific artists and will send alerts when they’re coming to your area, provided they’re playing at a Ticketmaster venue.

Google Enables Job Hunts and Email Alerts Directly From Search: Google partnered with a number of popular job search sites such as LinkedIn, Monster, CareerBuilder, and others to enable users to find employment opportunities directly through Google search and receive email alerts when a new relevant job posting opens. This new search update is currently limited to job opportunities in the U.S. and is available in English on both desktop and mobile searches.

YouTube Launches New Program to Teach Creators How to Develop VR Videos: YouTube announced a new three-day program to be held at YouTube Spaces Los Angeles that will teach creators how to make VR video. Participants will have access to camera equipment, tools for stitching clips together, training sessions, and other resources. Adweek reports that “creators need to have already made two 360-degree videos, have at least 10,000 subscribers, go through an orientation and be at least 18 years old” to participate in the program.

Want to catch our next show live? Click here to subscribe or add our show to your calendar.

Related Posts

Digital Marketing News: ROI Acronyms, Google Ranking Factors and Twitter’s New Look

0
This post was originally published on this site

The Hipster’s Guide to ROI [Infographic]
Marketing lingo has expanded and with all of the acronyms, it’s hard to decipher and differentiate combinations of letters. This infographic will show you the most common acronyms and esoteric language related to marketing ROI, giving you an explanation of what they are and why they matter. (LinkedIn Marketing Solutions Blog)

SEMrush Ranking Factors Study 2017
Google ranking factors constantly updates with every major algorithm change. In this report, the 12 most substantial and controversial factors (including website visits, pages per session and content) were chosen to show what impacts search results and to identify consistent patterns in the ranking mechanism that could be helpful to the SEO community. (SEMrush)

Check Out Our New Look!
Twitter has listened to the feedback from its users and have made some updates to the design. Some of the new features include: Typography has been refined to be more consistent with bolder headlines and rounded profile photos, Tweets are now updated instantly on the mobile app with replies, retweets and like counts so you can see real-time conversations and links to articles and websites now open in Safari’s viewer in iOS so you can easily access accounts on websites you’re already signed into. (Twitter Blog)

LinkedIn Adds Images in Comments, New Opportunities for Job Listings
There have been many small yet impactful new updates to LinkedIn recently, due to audience demand. One new feature is you can now add images into comments on posts within the LinkedIn platform. Another boost for LinkedIn is Google’s new tool which helps people find jobs directly through Google search, which sorts through various listings, including LinkedIn. (Social Media Today)

Instagram Stories Now Has 250 Million Daily Active Users, Heating Up Its Rivalry With Snapchat
Instagram Stories is the section of disappearing posts, which recently pulled ahead of Snapchat with an increase of 50 million users in just two months. Instagram also announced that users are now allowed to replay live video instead of it immediately disappearing. (AdWeek)

Google’s Job Listings Search is Now Open to All Job Search Sites & Developers
Google is now offering a formal path for outsiders to add job listings in Google search. Although it doesn’t have an official name, it’s part of the Google for Jobs initiative. You can also track how well your job listings are doing in Google search with a new filter in the Search Analytics report in the Google Search Console. (Search Engine Land)

Oh, How Pinteresting!
Pinterest rolled out a fresh new look for Lens, and instead of only being able to recreate your favorite restaurant dishes at home, Lens can now recognize and recommend outfit ideas including shoes, shirts, hats and other styles. The new interface and built-in tools make it easy to Lens the world around you. (Pinterest Blog)

The Most Important Skills for B2B Tech Marketers
B2B technology marketers rely on many skills for their niche market. The most important skills among Millennials, Generation Xers and Baby Boomers were soft skills, including communication and people management and writing skills. Others included digital media marketing and content marketing. (MarketingProfs)

What were your top digital marketing news stories this week?

We’ll be back next week with more top digital marketing news stories. Craving more news in the meantime? Check out TopRank Marketing on Twitter @toprank!

Live Video Strategy: How to Create a Show That Engages

0
This post was originally published on this site

Interested in broadcasting live video?

Have you considered starting a live video show?

To explore how to create a successful live video show, I interview Luria Petrucci.

More About This Show

The Social Media Marketing podcast is an on-demand talk radio show from Social Media Examiner. It’s designed to help busy marketers and business owners discover what works with social media marketing.

In this episode, I interview Luria Petrucci, a live video expert. She’s the host of Live Streaming Pros, a live show dedicated to helping businesses produce professional live streams. She’s helped big brands such as AT&T and Panasonic, and influencers such as Michael Hyatt, Amy Porterfield, and Pat Flynn.

Luria explores four levels of broadcasting equipment.

You’ll discover how to create an engaging flow for your live show.

Live Video Strategy: How to Create a Show That Engages featuring insights from Luria Petrucci on the Social Media Marketing Podcast.

Live Video Strategy: How to Create a Show That Engages featuring insights from Luria Petrucci on the Social Media Marketing Podcast.

Share your feedback, read the show notes, and get the links mentioned in this episode below.

Listen Now

Here are some of the things you’ll discover in this show:

Live Video Strategy

Luria’s Story

Luria got started with video in 2005. She was one of the first video podcasters to create content for the video iPod. (This was before the iPhone and long before YouTube “became a thing.”) Shortly thereafter, Luria started doing live video, too. By 2007, she was live-streaming from a professional studio and from mobile devices and began learning how live video creates a connection with her audience. Ever since, she’s been doing a weekly or daily show.

Before Periscope and Facebook Live, Luria’s live-streaming tech included a NewTek TriCaster and Ustream. She also did some YouTube. Justin.tv (which is now Twitch) and Livestream were the other early platforms, although they focused more on business. Although Ustream focuses more on businesses now, it concentrated on creators back then.

Luria enjoys seeing other people getting excited about going live, because she’s believed in live video for so long.

Luria enjoys seeing other people getting excited about going live.

Luria enjoys seeing other people getting excited about going live.

She says live video creates a strong relationship with her audience and is the reason her audience has stuck with her for 11 years through massive business changes, partnership changes, and all of the hard stuff that goes on in business. People tell her they’ve been watching her since day one. (Note: Back then, Luria was known as Cali Lewis.)

Listen to the show to discover what tech Luria used in the early days, as well as what live video was like at the beginning.

Why Consider Live Video

Live video is the best marketing conversion tool Luria has ever seen because of its impact. When people are watching you on live video, they know you’re not faking it. When you’re selling something or trying to lead people into a funnel, live video is easy because of what Luria calls the “conversational call to action.”

Like most people, Luria has a hard time selling. People don’t like to sell because they don’t like to be sold to. The conversational call to action is really about helping people. You’re letting them know you’re there for them and will take care of them. When you offer something in a live video, it’s easier to sell it because you’re not really selling. When somebody asks a question, your answer proves the value of your products or services.

Also, although the excitement for and accessibility of live video is new, its formulas and structure are proven.

Listen to the show to hear what I love about live video.

The Four Levels of Live Video Gear

Luria explains what gear you need for live video in four levels.

Luria breaks gear requirements down into four levels.

Luria breaks down gear requirements into four levels.

She calls level 1 the “selfie stream.” You hold your mobile phone in your hand and the live video is raw, up-close, and personal.

For level 2, add some gear to your mobile phone such as a microphone, video stabilizer, and a light. This gear adds a little polish to your video and removes the shakiness.

Level 3 is going live from a computer with software like Wirecast.

Finally, level 4 is for TV-quality video. Your gear includes a dedicated machine in a studio and a setup that produces a high-quality stream.

Listen to the show to hear Luria discuss the roots of live video.

Luria’s Live Video Strategy

Part 1 of Luria’s live video strategy is consistency. You want to tell your audience you’re there for them every single week. When you make that commitment to them, they’ll make that commitment to you. Plus, people have a lot to pay attention to, so if you’re not in their face all the time, they’ll forget about you.

Luria recommends starting with a weekly show. A monthly show is doable, but it’s not really enough to be consistent. You don’t want to go daily, unless you’ve done weekly for a while, because daily is really hard to keep up. Do your weekly show on the same day at the same time.

Commit to to a day and time for a weekly show.

Commit to a day and time for a weekly show.

The best time to go live is what works best for you and your schedule. Obviously, you can’t pre-record a live show. If you commit to a time that’s not good for you because you think it’s the best time to go live, you’ll fail and then quit. Don’t pick a time that will leave you rushed to get into the studio or worried about picking up your kids. The time you choose is part of your long-term strategy because you want to be consistent long-term and focus on delivering value.

You can use level 3 or 4 gear for this part of the strategy. You’ll be at a computer, so you have the ability to pull in interviews and add lower thirds (title graphics). You can do a lot to make it look good so it’s a great show. You can also go with level 2 for a regular show by putting your smartphone on a tripod.

Part 2 of the strategy is the life stream. The goal is to add a human element to your video content by sharing your life with your audience. To create this video, use gear from level 1 or 2 (your mobile device, maybe with some gear). Sharing who you are turns your audience into a loyal viewer base. This loyalty is valuable when you ask them to make a purchase. You want them to stick around so they don’t turn to your competitors.

I ask how someone might start creating this type of content. Luria recommends beginning with life streams as you get your weekly show up and running. Bring your audience into your journey. Luria says the experience you create is comparable to inviting your best friend to experience Disney World with you, instead of telling her about it afterward.

Totally playing hooky….

#LSPChallenge

Posted by Live Streaming Pros on Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Similarly, as you develop your weekly show, a buzz-building campaign with life streams leading up to the show’s launch will have more impact than people simply finding out about your show. For example, you can do life streams talking about what you’re going to name the show and when it will be on. Let people feel like part of that experience. At the same time, you can show off your new dog and wrap your business into your personal life.

To help people add the life stream component, Luria offers a downloadable content calendar. Part 2 is difficult to put into practice until you see it in action. A life stream is supposed to be random, but when you’re just getting used to the process, scheduling life streams can be helpful.

At first, do a life stream two times a week. If you already launched your weekly show, don’t do your life stream and your show on the same day. Do a fun mobile stream where you talk about something, either leading up to your weekly show or offering a behind-the-scenes look at something. You could share behind-the-scenes content daily and people wouldn’t get tired of it. It’s incredible.

Part 3 is the after live. This is the afterlife of your live video, and it’s all about repurposing. One of the biggest mistakes people make is thinking that their live video is all about their live video. It’s not. Get in the habit of making your live video the centerpiece of all of your content creation. That makes everything really strategic and helps you create live videos consistently.

To repurpose your live video, you can edit and trim the video and release it as a podcast, a YouTube video, or whatever fits into your overall strategy. Also, the live video will have many more video views after the fact than it will live, so don’t get caught up with live-viewer numbers.

If you’re doing live video on Facebook, you can boost it to reach a bigger audience. You can also share the video to your email list after the broadcast or send a link to your list prior to a scheduled live video. People will still open the email after your live video is over and watch the replay.

I note that in podcast episode 223, Chalene Johnson lays out how she uses her live video to do almost all of her marketing.

The three-part live video strategy is a long-term play, but with it in place, you’ll drive more traffic to your live views, as well as to other parts of your business.

Listen to the show to hear about my experience with life streams and Social Media Examiner’s weekly live show.

Show Flow

As soon as you press the button to go live, your brain starts buzzing with all kinds of thoughts about the people who are or aren’t there, what to do with your hands, and so forth. Luria says you can tame that sensation but she’s found that it never completely goes away. Live video comes with an extra adrenaline factor. To help you manage this aspect of live video, Luria shares her formula for the flow of a live video show.

Start with a tease. Because you’ll repurpose your live videos, you can’t wait for people to come in. You need to go right into the content. Tell people what they’re going to learn in the video, even for a fun random video. “Hey, I’m going to show you my new puppy.”

Then you have an intro. People who don’t know you will join your live videos, so explain who you are and why you’re talking about this topic. This intro is especially important if you’re doing a value-oriented weekly show.

Luria calls her people Streamers. So for example, one of her videos may start with, “Hey Streamers. I’m going to give you the formula for live videos so you don’t struggle with what to say. Hey, guys. I’m Luria Petrucci, and I’ve been doing live video for 11 years. I’ve really fine-tuned this formula, so I’m excited to share it with you today. First, before we get started, I really want to hear from you.”

Then she asks a question of the day such as, “My question of the day to you is: Have you done a live video yet? Yes or no. Give me a big yes or no in the comments.” After asking the question, Luria engages.

The live viewers likely won’t see the beginning sequence of tease-intro-share, because they haven’t joined the video yet. The beginning sequence is for the replay viewers, who will see the beginning of your video when they click Play.

Luria encourages engagement for a couple of reasons. First of all, with live video (especially on Facebook), the algorithms are built so the more engagement you get off the bat, the greater your visibility. Get people to comment, share, and engage, so Facebook shows your video to more people. As you encourage people to interact, make the interaction worth their while by responding to them.

A lot of people ask viewers for their city and state. Although Luria does that sometimes, she more often asks a specific question of the day that’s related to her topic. Viewer responses give her a bit of feedback on what she talks about during the show. Engage in the way you feel most comfortable, whether it’s asking for a share, a heart, a location, or a question of the day.

Next, Luria restates the topic overview, which is great for the live viewers and doesn’t bother the replay viewers. Then, she gets into the valuable information. For instance, if you’re doing three steps to a particular thing, go through the entire first step (or for a long video, a portion of it), and then break for engagement. That’s when you take questions or comments. So the pattern is value, then engage; value, then engage; value, then engage.

End the show with a call to action, which Luria chooses based on her business goals at the time. So the call to action might be about a product launch or audience-building.

For example, Luria might say, “Thank you guys so much for hanging out with me today. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed hearing all of your comments and questions. I’d love to hear from you, so keep it going and get into this community. I’m here every Tuesday and Thursday at 10 AM Pacific, so be sure to mark it in your calendars, set a timer on your alarm, whatever you gotta do to make sure you’re here.”

Listen to the show to hear Luria and I discuss how going live improves your communication skills.

Listen to the show!

Key takeaways mentioned in this episode:

What do you think? What are your thoughts on live video strategy? Please leave your comments below.

Live Video Strategy: How to Create a Show That Engages featuring insights from Luria Petrucci on the Social Media Marketing Podcast.

Live Video Strategy: How to Create a Show That Engages featuring insights from Luria Petrucci on the Social Media Marketing Podcast.

Related Posts

Creating Influencer-Targeted Content to Earn Links + Coverage – Whiteboard Friday

0
This post was originally published on this site

Most SEO campaigns need three kinds of links to be successful; targeting your content to influencers can get you 2/3 of the way there. In this Whiteboard Friday, Rand covers the tactics that will help your content get seen and shared by those with a wide and relevant audience.

How to create influencer-targeted content - Whiteboard Friday

Click on the whiteboard image above to open a high-resolution version in a new tab!

Video Transcription

Howdy, Moz fans, and welcome to another edition of Whiteboard Friday. This week we’re going to chat about how to create content that is specifically influencer-targeted in order to earn the links and attention and amplification that you often need.

Most SEO campaigns need 3 types of links:

So it’s the case that most SEO campaigns, as they’re trying to earn the rankings that they’re seeking, are trying to do a few things. You’re trying to grow your overall Domain Authority. You’re trying to get some specific keyword terms and phrases ranking on your site for those terms and phrases.

So you need kind of three kinds of links. This is most campaigns.

1. Links from broad, high-Domain Authority sites that are pointing — you kind of don’t care — anywhere on your site, the home page, internal pages, to your blog, to your news section. It’s totally fine. So a common one that we use here would be like the New York Times. I want the New York Times to link to me so that I have the authority and influence of a link from that domain and, hopefully, lots of domains like them, very high-Domain Authority domains.

2. Links to specific high-value keyword-targeted pages, hopefully, hopefully with specific anchor text, and that’s going to help me boost those individual URLs’ rankings. So I want this page over here to link to me and say “hairdryers,” to my page that is keyword targeted for the word “hairdryers.” Fingers crossed.

3. Links to my domain from other sites, in my sector or niche, that provide some of that topical authority and influence to help tell Google and the other search engines that this is what my site is about, that I belong in this sphere of influence, that I’m semantically and topically related to words and phrases like this. So I want appliancegal.com to link to my site if I’m trying to rank in the world of hairdryers and other kinds of appliances.

So of these, for one and three, we won’t talk about two today, but for one and three, much of the time the people that you’re trying to target are what we call in the industry influencers, and these influencers are going to be lots of people. I’ve illustrated them all here — mostly looking sideways at each other, not exactly sure why that is — but bloggers, and journalists, and authors, and conference organizers, and content marketers, and event speakers, and researchers, and editors, and podcasters, and influencers of a wide, wide variety. We could fill up the whole board with the types of people who are in the influencer world or have that title specifically, but they tend to share a few things in common. They are trying to produce content of one kind or another. They’re not dissimilar from us. They’re trying to produce things on the web, and when they do, they need certain elements to help fill in the gap. When they’re looking for those gap-filling elements, that is your opportunity to earn these kinds of links.

Content tactics

So a few tactics for that. First off, one of the most powerful ones, and we’ve talked about this a little bit here on Whiteboard Friday, but probably not in depth, is…

A. Statistics and data. The reason that this is such a powerful tool is because when you create data, especially if it’s either uniquely gathered by you, unique because you have it, because you can collect it and no one else can, or unique because you’ve put it together from many disparate sources, you’re the editorial curator of that data and statistics, everyone like this needs those types of statistics and data to support or challenge their arguments or their assertions or their coverage of the industry, whatever it is.

  • Why this works: This works well because this fills that gap. This gives them the relevant stats that they’re looking for. Because numbers are easy to use and easy to cite, and you can say, “Feel free to link to this. You’re welcome to copy this graph. You’re welcome to embed this chart.” All those kinds of things. That can make it even easier, but much of the time, just by having these statistics, you can do it.
  • The key is that you have to be visible at the time that these people are looking for them, and that means usually ranking for very hard to discover, through at least normal keyword research, long-tail types of terms that use words like “stats,” “data,” “charts,” “graphs,” and kind of these question formats like when, how much, how many, number of, etc.

It’s tough because you will not see many of those in your keyword research, because there’s a relatively few number of these people searching in any given month for this type of gap-filling data, so you have to intuit often what you should title those things. Put yourself in these people’s shoes and start Googling around for “What would I need if I had to write some industry coverage around this?” Then you’ll come up with these types of things, and you can try modifying your keyword research queries or doing some Google Suggest stuff with these words and phrases.

B. Visual content. Visual content is exceptionally valuable in this case because, again, it fills a gap that many of these folks have. When you are a content marketer, or when you’re a speaker at an event, or when you’re an author or a blogger, you need visual content that will help catch the eye, that will break up the writing that you’ve done, and it’s often much easier to get someone else’s visual content and simply cite your source and link to it than it is to create visual content of your own. These people often don’t have the resources to create their own visual content.

  • Why this works: So, for everyone who’s doing posts, and articles, and slide decks, and even videos, they say, “Why not let someone else do the work,” and you can be that someone else and fill these gaps.
  • Key: To do this well, you’re going to want to appear in a bunch of visual content search mediums that these folks are going to use. Those are places like…
    • Google Images most obviously, but also
    • Pinterest
    • SlideShare, meaning take your visuals, put them up in some sort of slide format, give some context to them and upload them to SlideShare. The nice thing about SlideShare, SlideShare actually reproduces each individual slide as a visual, and then Google Images can search those, and so you’ll often see SlideShare’s results inside Google Images. So this can be a great end around for that.
    • Instagram search, many folks are using that especially if you’re doing photos. You can see I’ve illustrated my own hair drying technique right here. This is clearly Rand. Look at me. I’ve got more hair than I know what to do with.
    • Flickr, still being used by many searchers, particularly because it has a Creative Commons search license, and that should bring up using a Creative Commons commercial use license that requires attribution with a link is your best bet for all of these platforms. It will mean you can get on lots of other Creative Commons visual and photography search engines, which can expose you to more of these types of people as they’re doing their searches.

C. Contrarian/counter-opinions. The last one I’ll cover here is contrarian or counter-opinions to the prevailing wisdom. So you might have an opinion like, “In the next three years, hairdryers will be completely obsolete because of X.”

  • Why it works: This works well because modern journalism has this idea and modern content, in fact, has this idea that they are supposed to create conflict and that they should cover both sides of an issue. In many industry specific sorts of fields, it’s often the case that that is a gap that goes unfilled. By being that sort of challenger to conventional wisdom or conventional thinking, you can fill that gap.
  • The key here is you want to either rank in Google search engine for some of those mid or long tail research type queries. These can be competitive, and so this is challenging, but presenting contrarian opinions is often great link bait. This is kind of a good way to earn links of all kinds in here.
  • Second, I would also urge you to do a little bit of comment marketing and some social media platforms, because what you want to start is to build a brand where you are known for having this contrarian opinion on this conventional topic in your space so that people point all these influencers to you when they’re asked about it. You’re trying to build up this branding of, “Well, I don’t agree with the conventional wisdom around hairdryers.” Hairdryers might be a tough topic for that one, but certainly these other two can work real well.

So using these tactics, I hope that you can go reach out and fill some gaps for these influencers and, as a result, earning two of the three exact kind of links that you need in order to rank well in the search results.

And we’ll see you again next week for another edition of Whiteboard Friday. Take care.

Video transcription by Speechpad.com

In-Flight Content Guide: Making the Most of Your Content Journey

0
This post was originally published on this site

What does content marketing success look like to you? Is a healthier pipeline? Increased client retention? Or something completely different? While every marketing team might have a slightly different goal for content, the message is the same: You have to create a predictable way to gauge the impact of your content.

The content marketing journey can be perilous at times. At every turn there is a new competitor, shiny object or new “best practice”. This can cause teams to get so caught up in the creation of a quantity of content, that content amplification strategies are an afterthought, or even worse, not executed at all.

We appreciate that you’ve travelled 1,000’s of miles with us on this content marketing adventure. We’ve packed and prepped for our content expedition through developing a content strategy and hiked our way to creating a memorable content experience. But what good is content strategy and creation if you don’t have a plan to get your content in front of the RIGHT people?

While it can be tempting to end your journey once you’ve developed content, it’s really just the first leg of the adventure. Now it’s time to focus on top amplification and co-creation opportunities to make your content soar.

For this edition, please join me in thanking our crew of experts including: Peg Miller, Arnie Kuenn, Jessica Best, Lee Odden, Deana Goldasich, Amisha Gandhi, Maureen Jann, Cathy McPhillips, Pierre-Loic Assayag, Justin Levy, Zerlina Jackson, Robert Rose and Anna McHugh!

Share Insights From Our Content Crew Members

If you’d like to share tips from your favorite crew members, simply click below to tweet! Click To Tweet Stay close to your customer & sales team, & you’ll never run out of content ideas. @PegMiller Click To Tweet Set aside a budget to amplify your content to improve reach. @ArnieK Click To Tweet The most engaging content is a response. @bestofjess Click To Tweet Ask prospective customers for preferences & invite them to share topical expertise. @leeodden Click To Tweet Click To Tweet Create memorable experiences with interactive content that adds value. @AmishaGandhi Click To Tweet Messages must be crafted to fit both consumption mode & the marketing funnel. @MaureenOnPoint Click To Tweet Make it easy for your influencers to share content with prewritten messaging. @cmcphillips Click To Tweet Partnering with influential experts is crucial to creating engaging content. @pierreloic Click To Tweet Paid social can help greatly improve reach & engagement if used properly. @justinlevy Click To Tweet Develop strategies to deliver content beyond your website. Zerlina Jackson Click To Tweet Better work inherently drives deeper engagement. @Robert_Rose Click To Tweet Be passionate about the content you’re creating and truly believe in the value. @amchughredhat Click To Tweet

What’s Next?

It’s time to book your ticket for Content Marketing World 2017!

Content Marketing World 2017

To connect with this content marketing crew of experts in person, be sure to check out the agenda for the 2017 Content Marketing World conference.

You can also follow along and participate in conversations via Twitter by using the hashtag #CMWorld, by following CMI on Twitter (@CMIContent) or by subscribing to our blog.

3 Ways to Easily Caption Social Media Video

0
This post was originally published on this site

social media how to
Worried that most people view your social media video with the sound off?

Looking for quick and efficient ways to produce captioned video?

In this article, you’ll discover three ways to automatically caption social media video.

3 Ways to Easily Caption Social Media Video by Serena Ryan on Social Media Examiner.

3 Ways to Easily Caption Social Media Video by Serena Ryan on Social Media Examiner.

#1: Use Live Titles to Caption Apple Clips

Need a quicker way to do captions for a video? Apple Clips is now available and one of its key features is the ability to create Live Titles, or real-time captions. Plus, the square video layout is ideal for posting to Facebook and Instagram.

Ready to get started?

First, download the app from the App Store on your iOS smartphone and open it.

Tap on the down arrow in the upper-left corner and select the New Video drop-down that’s revealed.

Inside Clips, tap on the down arrow in the upper-left corner and select the New Video drop-down.

Inside Clips, tap on the down arrow in the upper-left corner and select the New Video drop-down.

Now, select Video from the three media options and tap on the speech bubble to enable captioning.

The speech bubble icon will enable Live Title captioning for your Clips video.

The speech bubble icon will enable Live Title captioning for your Clips video.

You’ll have three animated caption styles to choose from, as well as an option for None. Select the caption type you want and get ready to record. The captions appear in real time with your voice.

Choose from three Live Title styles to caption your Clips video.

Choose from three Live Title styles to caption your Clips video.

Not camera-ready? There’s also an option to select a set screen and then record audio only with captions. This is great if you’re camera-shy but want an effective video to get your message out with captions.

If you're camera-shy, Clips also offers four set screens with static backgrounds you can use to create audio-only videos.

If you’re camera-shy, Clips also offers four set screens with static backgrounds you can use to create audio-only videos.

Pro Tip: To get the most out of this app, have a short script ready and then record your video scene by scene. The scenes will be threaded together to form your video.

#2: Generate Automatic Captions via Facebook Video Library

Did you know you can easily add captions to your published Facebook video (including Facebook Live videos), as well as your unpublished videos? Adding captions before your video is published means that they’re properly captioned when they do go live.

To get started, select the Videos tab from the left-hand menu of your Facebook page, then click on the Video Library button.

On your Facebook business page, click on Videos and then Video Library to view all of your videos.

On your Facebook business page, click on Videos and then Video Library to view all of your videos.

Within the video library, you can see your published and unpublished videos. Unpublished videos are noted with a yellow dot and published videos with a green dot.

Your Facebook video library holds all of your published and unpublished videos. Videos with a yellow dot are unpublished and videos with a green dot are published.

Your Facebook video library holds all of your published and unpublished videos. Videos with a yellow dot are unpublished and videos with a green dot are published.

From this list, select the video you want to add captions to. When the video opens in the player window, click the Edit button and then the Captions tab. Simply click on the Generate button to automatically generate captions.

Press the Generate button (with the magic wand icon) to produce automatic captions for your video.

Press the Generate button (with the magic wand icon) to produce automatic captions for your video.

After the captions are generated, you’ll see your video broken into timed segments with their corresponding captions.

After your Facebook video is captioned, you can check and revise text that doesn't accurately reflect the audio.

After your Facebook video is captioned, you can check and revise text that doesn’t accurately reflect the audio.

Given that the captions are automatically generated, they may not be 100% accurate. It’s a good idea to play each segment individually and edit captions if necessary.

Make sure the Pause Video While Typing box is checked; this makes it very easy to play only the portion of the clip you’re editing, making it transcribe what you hear. To change any caption, select the text of the automatically generated caption and type the correct text.

Pro Tip: Wearing headphones will help you concentrate as you edit the captions.

#3: Enable Subtitles for YouTube Video via Video Manager

YouTube also has an automatic captions option. To take advantage of this feature, upload your video to your YouTube channel, then go to Video Manager.

Navigate to the video you want to add captions to, and click on the arrow next to the video name to reveal a drop-down menu. Click the Subtitles/CC button.

Once inside YouTube Video Manager, choose the Subtitles/CC option from the Edit drop-down menu beside the video you want to caption.

Once inside YouTube Video Manager, choose the Subtitles/CC option from the Edit drop-down menu beside the video you want to caption.

You should then see the language file with a bright-green button next to it; English captioning is the default choice.

Available caption files for your YouTube video are found under the Published section.

Available caption files for your YouTube video are found under the Published section.

Again, these captions have been automatically generated, so make sure you check them for accuracy.

To review the captions and edit them, click the language caption file and then click the Edit button in the top right of the caption column.

As with the Facebook process, check the Pause Video While Typing box, then play the video. Click on any individual caption segment to play each piece and revise the caption.

When you’re happy with the captions, click Save.

Conclusion

Adding captions to your videos is not just important, it’s essential. On Facebook, for example, 85% of videos are played without sound.

The best timesavers for all captions being added to videos is to have a script. With a script, you can automatically add the captions to your YouTube video and then download the .srt file to upload to Facebook. Alternatively, you can quickly and easily use your script to create a short video on Apple Clips with captions.

What do you think? Have you tried any of these options for creating captions for your social media video? Which of these options seems most helpful to you? How do you add captions to your videos? Share your thoughts and any questions in the comments below.

3 Ways to Easily Caption Social Media Video by Serena Ryan on Social Media Examiner.

3 Ways to Easily Caption Social Media Video by Serena Ryan on Social Media Examiner.

Related Posts

The Case For &amp; Against Attending Marketing Conferences

0
This post was originally published on this site

I just finished reading Jan Schaumann’s short post on Why Companies Should Pay for Their Employees to Attend Conferences. I liked it. I generally agree with it. But I have more to add.

First off, I think it’s reasonable for managers and company leaders to be wary of conferences and events. It is absolutely true that if your employees attend them, there will be costs associated, and it’s logical for businesses to seek a return on investment.

What do you sacrifice when sending a team member to an event?

Let’s start by attempting to tally up the costs:

  • Lost productivity – Usually on the order of 1 to 4 days depending on the length of the event, travel distance, tiredness from travel, whether the team member does some work at the event or makes up with evenings/weekends, etc. Given marketing salaries ranging from $40K–$100K, this could be as little as $150 (~1 day’s cost at the lower end) to $1,900 (a week’s cost on the high end).
  • Cost of tickets – In the web marketing world, the range of events is fairly standard, between ~$1,000 and $2,000, with discounts of 20–50% off those prices for early registration (or with speaker codes). Some examples:
    • CTAConf in Vancouver is $999 ($849 if you’re an Unbounce customer)
    • Content Marketing World in Cleveland is $1,195 (early rate) or $1,395 later
    • Pubcon Las Vegas in $1,099 (early rate), not sure what it goes up to
    • HubSpot’s INBOUND is $1,299 (or $1,899 for a VIP pass)
    • SMX East is $1,795 (or $2,595 for all access)
    • SearchLove London is $890 (or $1,208 for VIP)
    • MozCon in Seattle is $1,549 (or $1,049 for Moz subscribers)
  • Cost of travel and lodging – Often between $1,000–$3,000/person depending on location, length, and flight+hotel costs.
  • Potential loss of employee through recruitment or networking – It’s a thorny one, but it has to be addressed. I know many employers who fear sending their staff to events because they worry that the great networking opportunities will yield a higher-paying or more exciting offer in the future. Let’s say that for every 30 employees you send (or every 30 events you send an employee to), you’ll lose one to an opportunity that otherwise wouldn’t have had them considering a departure. I think that’s way too high (not because marketers don’t leave their jobs but because they almost always leave for reasons other than an opportunity that came through a conference), but we’ll use it anyway. On the low end, that might cost you $10K (if you’ve lost a relatively junior person who can be replaced fairly quickly) and on the high end, might be as much as $100K (if you lose a senior person and have a long period without rehiring + training). We’ll divide that cost by 30 using our formula of one lost employee per thirty events.

Total: $4,630–$10,230

That’s no small barrier. For many small businesses or agencies, it’s a month or two of their marketing expenses or the salary for an employee. There needs to be significant return on those dollars to make it worthwhile. Thankfully, in all of my experiences over hundreds of marketing events the last 12 years, there is.

What do you gain by sending a team member to an event?

Nearly all the benefits of events come from three sources: the growth (in skills, relationships, exposure to ideas, etc) of the attendee(s), applicable tactics & strategies (including all the indirect ones that come from serendipitous touch points), and the extension of your organization’s brand and network.

In the personal growth department, we see benefits like:

  • New skills, often gained through exposure at events and then followed up on through individual research and effort. It’s absolutely true that few attendees will learn enough at a 30-minute talk to excel at some new tactic. But what they will learn is that tactic’s existence, and a way to potentially invest in it.
  • Unique ideas, undiscoverable through solo work or in existing team structures. I’ve experienced this benefit myself many times, and I’ve seen it on Moz’s team countless times.
  • The courage, commitment, inspiration, or simply the catalyst for experimentation or investment. Sometimes it’s not even something new, or something you’ve never talked about as a team. You might even be frustrated to find that your coworker comes back from an event, puts their head down for a week, and shows you a brilliant new process or meaningful result that you’ve been trying to convince them to do for months. Months! The will to do new things strikes whenever and however it strikes. Events often deliver that strike. I’ve sat next to engineers whom I’ve tried to convince for years to make something happen in our tools, but when they see a presenter at MozCon show off another tool that does it or bemoan the manual process currently required, they suddenly set their minds to it and deliver. That inspiration and motivation are priceless.
  • New relationships that unlock additional skill growth, amplification opportunities, business development or partnership possibilities, references, testimonials, social networking, peer validation, and all the other myriad advancements that accompany human connections.
  • Upgrading the ability to learn, to process data and stories and turn them into useful takeaways.
  • Alongside that, upgraded abilities to interact with others, form connections, learn from people, and form or strengthen bonds with colleagues. We learn, even in adulthood, through observation and imitation, and events bring people together in ways that are more memorable, more imprinted, and more likely to resonate and be copied than our day-to-day office interactions.

A gentleman at SearchLove London 2016 gives me an excellent (though slightly blurry) thumbs up

In the applicable tactics & strategies, we get benefits like:

  • New tools or processes that can speed up work, or make the impossible possible.
  • Resources for advancing skills and information on a topic that’s important to one’s job or to a project in particular.
  • Actionable ideas to make an existing task, process, or result easier to achieve or more likely to produce improved results.
  • Bigger-picture concepts that spur an examination of existing direction and can improve broad, strategic approaches.
  • People & organizations who can help with all above, formally or informally, paid as consultants, or just happy to answer a couple questions over email or Twitter.

Purna Virji at SMX Munich 2017

In the extension of organizational brand/network, we get benefits like:

  • Brand exposure to people you meet and interact with at conferences. Since we know the world of sales & marketing is multi-touch, this can have a big impact, especially if either your customers or your amplification targets include anyone in your professional field.
  • Contacts at other companies that can help you reach people or organizations (this benefit has grown massively thanks to the proliferation of professional social networks like those on LinkedIn and Twitter)
  • Potential media contacts, including the more traditional (journalists, news publications) and the emerging (bloggers, online publishers, powerful social amplifiers, etc)
  • A direct introduction point to speakers and organizers (e.g. if anyone emails me saying “I saw you speak at XYZ and wanted to follow up about…” the likelihood of an invested reply goes way up vs. purely online outreach)

But I said above that these three included “nearly all” the benefits, didn’t I? 🙂

Daisy Quaker at MozCon Ignite

It’s true. There are more intangible forms of value events provide. I think one of the biggest is the trust gained between a manager and their team or an employer and their employees. When organizations offer an events budget, especially when they offer it with relative freedom for the team member to choose how and where to spend it, a clear message is sent. The organization believes in its people. It trusts its people. It is willing to sacrifice short-term work for the long-term good of its people. The organization accepts that someone might be recruited away through the network they gain at an event, but is willing to make the trade-off for a more trusting, more valuable team. As the meme goes:

CFO: What if we invest in our people and they leave?
CEO: What if we don’t and they stay?

Total: $A Lot?

How do you measure the returns?

The challenge comes in because these are hard things for which to calculate ROI. In fact, any number I throw out for any of these above will absolutely be wrong for your particular situation and organization. The only true way to estimate value is through hindsight, and that means having faith that the future will look like the past (or rigorous, statistically sound models with large sample sizes, validated through years of controlled comparison… which only a handful of the world’s biggest and richest companies do).

It’s easy to see stories like “The biggest deals I’ve ever done, mostly (80%) came from meeting people at conferences” and “I’ve had the opportunity to open the door of conversations previously thought locked” and “When I send people on my team I almost always find they come back more inspired, rejuvenated, and full of fire” and dismiss them as outliers or invent reasons why the same won’t apply to you. It’s also easy explain away past successes gained through events as not necessarily requiring the in-person component.

I see this happen a lot. I’m embarrassed to say I’ve seen it at Moz. Remember last summer, when we did layoffs? One of the benefits cut was the conference and events budget for team members. While I think that was the right decision, I’m also hopeful & pushing for that to be one of the first benefits we reinstate now that we’re profitable again.

Lexi Mills at Turing Festival in Edinburgh

Over the years of my event participation, first as an attendee, and later as a speaker, I can measure my personal and Moz’s professional benefits, and come up with some ballpark range. It’s harder to do with my team members because I can’t observe every benefit, but I can certainly see every cost in line-item format. Human beings are pretty awful in situations like these. We bias to loss aversion over potential gain. We rationalize why others benefit when we don’t. We don’t know what we’re missing so we use logic to convince ourselves it’s ROI negative to justify our decision.

It’s the same principle that often makes hard-to-measure marketing channels the best ROI ones.

Some broader discussions around marketing event issues

Before writing this post, I asked on Twitter about the pros and cons of marketing conferences that folks felt were less often covered. A number of the responses were insightful and worthy of discussion follow-ups, so I wanted to include them here, with some thoughts.

If you’re a conference organizer, you know how tough a conversation this is. Want to bring in outside food vendors (which are much more affordable and interesting than what venues themselves usually offer)? 90% of venues have restrictions against it. Want to get great food for attendees? That same 90% are going to charge you on the order of hundreds of dollars per attendee. MozCon’s food costs are literally 25%+ of our entire budget, and considering we usually break even or lose a little money, that’s huge.

If you’re a media company and you run events for profit, or you’re a smaller business that can’t afford to have your events be a money-losing endeavor, you’re between a rock and a hard place. At places like MozCon and CTAConf, the food is pretty killer, but the flip side is there’s no margin at all. Many conferences simply can’t afford to swing that.

Totally agree with Ross — interesting one, and pros/cons to each. At smaller shows, I love the more intimate connections, but I’m also well aware that for most speakers, it’s a tough proposition to ask for a new presentation or to bring their best stuff. It’s also hard to get many big-name speakers. And, as Ross points out, the networking can be deeper, but with a smaller group. If you’re hoping to meet someone from company X or run into colleagues from the past, small size may inhibit.

For years prior to MozCon, I’d only ever been to events with a couple keynotes and then panels of 3–6 people in breakout sessions the rest of the day. I naively thought we’d invented some brilliant new system with the all-keynote-style conference (it had obviously been around for decades; I just wasn’t exposed to it). It also became clear over time that many other marketing conferences had the same idea and today, it’s an even split between those that do all-keynotes vs. those with a hybrid of breakouts, panels, and keynotes.

Personally, my preference is still all-keynote. I agree with Greg that, on occasion, a speaker won’t do a great job, and sitting through those 20–40 minutes can be frustrating. But I can count on a single hand the number of panel sessions I’ve ever found value in, and I strongly dislike being forced to choose between sessions and not sharing the same experience with other attendees. Even when the session I’ve chosen is a good one, I have FOMO (“what if that other session around the corner is even better?!”) and that drives my quality of experience down.

This, though, is personal preference. If you like panels, breakouts, and multi-track options, stick to SMX, Content Marketing World, INBOUND, and others like them. If you’re like me and prefer all keynotes, single track, go for CTAConf, Searchlove, Inbounder, MozCon, and their ilk.

I agree this is a real problem. Being a conference organizer, I get to see a lot of the feedback and requests, and I think that’s where the issue stems from. For example, a few years back, Brittan Bright, who now does sales at Google in New York, gave a brilliant talk about the soft skills of selling and client relations. It scored OK in the lineup, but a lot of the feedback overall that year was from people who wanted more “tactical tips” and “technical tricks” and less “soft skills” content. Every conference has to deal with this demand and supply issue. You might respond (as my friend Wil Reynolds often does) with “who cares what people say they want?! Give them what they don’t know they need!”

That’s how conferences go broke, my friends. 🙂 Every year, we try to include at least a few sessions that focus on these softer skills (in numerous ways), and every year, there’s pushback from folks who wish we’d just show them how to get more easy links, or present some new tool they haven’t heard of before. It’s a tough give and take, but I’m empathetic to both sides on this issue. Actionable tactics matter, and they make for big, immediate wins. Soft skills are important, too, but there’s a significant portion of the audience who’ll get frustrated seeing talks on these topics.

Hrm… I think I agree more with Freja than with Herman, but it’s entirely a personal preference. If you know yourself well enough to know that you’ll benefit more (or less) by attending with others from your team, make the call. This is one reason I love the idea of businesses offering the freedom of choice on how to use their event budget.

There were a number of these conflicting points-of-view in reply to my tweet, and I think they indicate the challenge for attendees and organizers. Opinions vary about what makes for a great conference, a great speaker or session, or the best way to get value from them.

Which marketing conferences do I recommend?

I get this question a lot (which is fair, I go to *a lot* of events). It really depends what you like, so I’ll try to break down my recommendations in that format.

Big, industry-wide events with many thousands of attendees, big name keynotes, famous musical acts, and hundreds of breakout session options:

  • INBOUND by Hubspot (Boston, MA 9/25–9/28) is a clear choice here. If you craft your experience well, you can get an immense amount of value.
  • Content Marketing World (Cleveland, OH 9/5–9/8) is always a good show, and they’ve recently focused on getting more gender-diverse.
  • Dreamforce by Salesforce (San Francisco, CA 11/6–11/9) has a similar feel to INBOUND in size and format, though it’s generally more classic sales & marketing focused, and has less programming that overlaps with our/my world of SEO, social media, content marketing, etc.
  • Web Summit (Lisbon, Portugal 11/6–11/9) is even broader, focusing on technology, startups, entrepreneurship, and sales+marketing. If you’re looking to break out of the marketing bubble and get a chance to see some “where are we going” and “what’s driving innovation” content, this is a good one.
  • SMX Munich (Munich, Germany 3/20–3/21 2018) is one of the best produced and best attended shows in Europe. This event consistently delivers great presentations. Because of its location on the calendar, it’s also where many speakers debut their theses and tactics each year, and since it’s in Germany (or, more probably because it’s run by the amazing Sandra & Matthew Finlay), everything is executed to perfection.

Mid-tier events with 1,000–1,500 attendee:

  • MozCon by Moz (Seattle, WA 7/17–7/19) I’m obviously biased, but I also get to see the survey data from attendees. The ratings of “excellent” or “outstanding” and the high number of people who buy tickets for the following year within a few days of leaving give me confidence that this is still one of the best events in the web marketing world.
  • CTAConf by Unbounce (Vancouver, BC 6/25–6/27) Oli Gardner, who’s become an exceptional speaker himself, works directly with every presenter (all invitation-only, like MozCon) to make sure the decks are top notch. In addition, the setting in Vancouver, the food trucks, the staging, the networking, and the kindness of Canada are all wonderful.
  • Inbounder (Valencia, Spain 5/2018) This event only happens every other year, but if 2016 was anything to judge by, it’s one of Europe’s best. Certainly, you won’t find a more incredible city or a better location. The conference hall is inside a spaceship that’s landed on a grassy park surrounding an ancient walled city. Even Seattle’s glacier-ringed beauty can’t top that.
  • ConversionXL Live (Austin, TX 3/28–3/30) Peep Laja and crew put on a terrific event with a lovely venue and clear attention paid to the actionable, tactical value of takeaways. I came back from the few sessions I attended with all sorts of suggestions for the Moz team to try (if only webdev resources weren’t so difficult to wrangle).
  • SMX Advanced (Seattle, WA TBD 2018) I haven’t been in a couple years, but many search marketers rave about this show’s location, production quality, panels, and speakers. It’s one of the few places that still attracts the big-name representatives from Google & Bing, so if you want to hear directly from the horse’s mouth a few seconds before it’s broadcast and analyzed a million ways on Twitter, this is the spot.

Outside The Inbounder Conference in Valencia, Spain

Smaller, local, & niche events with a few hundred attendees and a more intimate setting:

  • SearchLove (San Diego, Boston, & London 10/16–10/17) It’s somewhat extraordinary that this event remains small, like a hidden secret in the web marketing world. The quality of content and presentations are on par with MozCon (as are the ratings, and I know from other events how rare those are), but the settings are more intimate with only 2-300 participants in San Diego & Boston, and a larger, but still convivial crowd of 4-600 in London. I personally learn more at Searchlove than any other show.
  • Engage (formerly Searchfest) The SEMPDX crew has always had a unique, wonderful event, and Portland, OR is one of my favorite cities to visit.
  • MNSearch (Minneapolis 6/23) One of the exciting up-and-coming local events in our space. The MNSearch folks have brought together great speakers in fun venues at a surprisingly affordable price, and with some killer after-hours events, too. I’ve been twice and was very impressed both times.

This list is by no means exhaustive, and I’m certain there are many other events that give great value. I can only speak from my own experiences, which are going to carry the bias of what I’ve seen and what I like.

Help us better understand the value of conferences to you

Two years ago, I ran a survey about marketing conferences and received, analyzed, then published the results. I’d like to repeat that again, and see what’s changed. Please contribute and tell us what matters to you:

Take the survey here

I look forward to the discussion in the comments. If the Twitter thread was any indication, there’s a lot of passion and interest around this topic, one that I share. And of course, if you’d like to chat in person about this and see how we’re doing things at Moz, I hope you’ll consider MozCon in just a few weeks in Seattle.


Roger MozBotRoger’s note: *beep* Rogerbot here! I think Rand forgot an important benefit of one conference: At MozCon, you can hug a robot. If you’re considering joining us in Seattle this July, we’re over 75% sold out! Be sure to grab your ticket while you can.