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You’ve seen it for yourself. These days, there are a gazillion different ways to broadcast your thoughts online. Blogging, podcasting, YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat — the options are overwhelming. Are you supposed to do all of them? If not, which ones are most important? What if you are talented in one medium and terrible in another?(...)
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This statistic, via HubSpot, conveys all you need to know about the opportunity that LinkedIn video presents: Only 38% of marketers are sharing video content on the platform, even though three-quarters rate it as a successful tactic.
TrackMaven CEO Allen Gannett is a prime example of what success looks like with this relatively nascent feature. The name of his session at Content Marketing World, “How To: 0 To 1 Million LinkedIn Video Views in 6 Months,” understates achievement, as his videos have now amassed around 3.5 million views – all organic.
Fortunately, Allen delivered on the “How To” part, serving up a bounty of practical tips that marketers can apply right now.
[bctt tweet="Any time you see a new platform emerge, there’s usually a lot of opportunity very early on. - @Allen on #LinkedIn video at #CMWorld" username="toprank"]
It Began with a Dream
As LinkedIn was gearing up to unveil its in-stream video functionality last year, Allen posted on his personal page about a (fairly weird) dream he’d experienced the previous night:
As it happened, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner took notice of the post.
And with that, Allen was in. He’s spent the last 14 months or so building his #AllenAsks series into a big hit. Each video features very brief interviews that he’s conducted with fellow executives and prominent thought leaders. And he’s experienced very real business benefits including: Direct awareness and leads for his company, social proof for prospects, authentic recruitment of talent, speaking invites for him, and free promotion for his new book The Creative Curve.
In his CMWorld session on Wednesday, Allen shared the inside scoop on his formula.
Understanding the LinkedIn Algorithm
The inner workings of LinkedIn’s feed algorithm can seem mysterious, but you may not be aware (I wasn’t) that the company shares details about it quite openly. By perusing this post on the LinkedIn Engineering Blog, you can learn a great deal about how and why certain posts are prioritized on user feeds.
The LinkedIn algorithm evaluates content on these factors, among others:
- How many times was it viewed?
- How many times was it liked?
- What is the update about?
- How old is it?
- What language is it written in?
- What companies, people, or topics are mentioned?
- What have you, as an individual, liked or shared in the past?
- Who do you interact with most frequently?
These influences are important to understand, but obviously they’re not secrets, and are largely intuitive. The real meat of this presentation came from Allen’s own personal findings.
Allen Gannett’s Tips for Growing Your LinkedIn Video Reach
As general LinkedIn video best practices, Allen offers the following tips:
- Keep videos under 90 seconds in length, and ideally under 60 seconds.
- To capture your audience’s interest, create videos about topics that are at the same time novel and familiar.
- Don’t overthink it with equipment. For his productions, Allen simply uses a smartphone with the app Deshake, which digitally stabilizes the videos.
- “Focus below the fold.” In other words, it’s not just about the video content itself, but on prompting and fostering activity in the comments underneath.
[bctt tweet="You want to provoke those #video comments, so people get in there and have a conversation, then #LinkedIn starts sending them more of your content. @Allen #CMWorld" username="toprank"]
In addition, these sharing tactics have helped Allen drive the tremendous traction of his LinkedIn video series:
Post From Personal Accounts
One might be compelled to post B2B videos from a Company Page, but such updates inherently get less reach than those coming from a personal profile. Also, content tends to make a much bigger impact on audiences when it originates from a human rather than from a brand.
“'We’re living in an age where authenticity is key on social media,” he notes. “People want to hear stories from individuals.”
Rally your employees or company leaders to leverage their own LinkedIn presences, and you’ll see much stronger results without the need for paid amplification.
Garner Early Engagement
This is vital. The ultimate reach of LinkedIn content is largely dictated by its performance right after being published. Allen tries to drive as much engagement as he can within the first 60 minutes after he posts a video, even if it means texting a bunch of friends and asking them to click “Like” on it. One could also send out an email or Slack message to their coworkers with the same intention.
Connect with 2nd- and 3rd-Degree Connections
When you see people you aren’t yet connected with on LinkedIn quickly liking or commenting on your video, reach out with a connection request. This will grow your base audience going forward, helping to bolster that crucial early engagement for future content.
Don’t worry about striking people the wrong way, Allen urges. “The reality is that if someone’s going and liking your content within the first five minutes, they probably want to be your LinkedIn friend.”
Don’t Post Too Frequently
LinkedIn’s feed only displays one piece of content from a creator at a time, so make sure to space yours out. Allen suggests posting videos five times per a week at maximum, and no more than once per day. If he sees a post doing particularly well, he’ll hold off on posting anything the following day to let it breathe and grow.
Post When LinkedIn is Less Busy
You’ll have a harder time appearing on feeds if you’re posting at the same time as everyone else. Ideally, you’ll want to add your video at a quieter time (say, very early in the morning) so that it’s already picked up steam by the time a majority of members are browsing the platform.
Diversify Content Types
Don’t lean exclusively on video. Allen has found that the LinkedIn algorithm can ding you for posting too much of the same content type, so be sure to mix in images and text-based posts as well.
It’s a good idea in general to include captions in videos created for social media, and especially on LinkedIn. Since people are often viewing at work, it’s all the more likely they’ll be doing so with the sound turned off. Allen offers up a few options for adding subtitles to your video content:
- Upload SRT files
- Hire someone on Fiverr
- Use an online service like Rev (costs only $1/minute)
- Use YouTube’s auto-caption tool
Don’t Wait to Get Rolling
Allen’s parting advice came with an especially strong emphasis: Don’t hold off on applying these recommendations and putting your LinkedIn video strategy into motion. Visibility is easiest to achieve here in the early stages, with fewer creators to compete with. “Don’t be asking yourself in five years when B2B YouTube blew up,” he implores.
[bctt tweet="If (#LinkedIn video) is interesting to you, this is something to start tomorrow. Because it’s going to get harder as more people start to do it. - @Allen #CMWorld" username="toprank"]
The opportunity is ripe. And now, we’ve got the necessary information to take advantage. Thanks, Allen!
Stay tuned for more #CMWorld coverage and insights on the TopRank Marketing Blog. In addition, follow myself and the some of our on-the-ground team members on Twitter at: @TopRank, @leeodden, @azeckman, and @janebartel.Read More »
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When I started working in digital marketing in 1984, the first online ad I created was in 40-column ASCII text format on my Commodore 64 computer. It was a simple promotion for the 300-baud bulletin board system (BBS) I owned and operated.
I created the text-only ad to post on other BBS systems, meant to drive traffic to my pre-website by listing the features my BBS offered and the basic information on how people could connect to it. Here's an actual screen-shot from a few years later when I'd moved on to using a Commodore Amiga:
The ad worked well, successfully driving new sign-ups and helping to have my system named the best BBS in Colorado by the top list-making organization of the day. Back then, simply putting out a BBS ad was all it took to get found. But it also helped that I presented my content in a straightforward and easy-to-understand way, one best practice that has stood the test of time and is more important than ever today.
Of course, there are other examples of this. Certain tenets of digital marketing are enduring by nature and just as important and effective today as they were in the past. But what can digital marketers learn from listening to some of the enduring lessons from our profession's past?
As it turns out, several best practices from the digital dark ages are still used with great success in today's vastly different online landscape. In this piece, we bring some of those front and center.
Read on as we highlight some of the the industry's top online marketing experts who've illuminated the enduring tactics and strategies that are still — and perhaps forever — relevant in today’s content marketing world.
The Content Marketing Experts
Carla Johnson, Chief Innovator at Type A Communications, considers top-caliber writing to be of utmost importance in any content marketing initiative.
[bctt tweet="“Invest in great writing. If you don’t have great writing you can’t have great content.” — @CarlaJohnson" username="toprank"]
Jonathan Mildenhall, Co-Founder and Chief Executive at TwentyFirstCenturyBrand (and former Chief Marketing Officer at Airbnb), considers big ideas more enduring than huge marketing budgets.
[bctt tweet="“The size of the idea is so much more important than the size of the budget.” — @Mildenhall" username="toprank"]
Our own CEO, Lee Odden, puts inspiring and informative content high on the priority list for achieving enduring success.
[bctt tweet="“The real secret to great content marketing is a focus on creating meaningful and mutually beneficial content that inspires, entertains and informs.” — @LeeOdden" username="toprank"]
Finding joy in writing is a timeless truth in digital marketing, according to Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer at MarketingProfs.
[bctt tweet="“The best content creators have fun! If you aren't having fun creating content, you aren't doing it right.” — @MarketingProfs" username="toprank"]
Collaboration with talented people is a top enduring content tip from Amisha Gandhi, Vice President of Influencer Marketing at SAP.
[bctt tweet="“Work with a community of top experts and thought leaders to co-create content that will increase amplification and engagement with your brand.” — @AmishaGandhi" username="toprank"]
Being aware of distractions can help push us towards the content marketing practices that really matter, according to Deana Goldasich, Chief Executive at Well Planned Web.
[bctt tweet="“Step away from the shiny dashboard and metrics and get down to brass tacks.” — @goldasich" username="toprank"]
Keeping focus with a clear intent is another timeless marketing tactic recommended by Alex Rynne, Content Marketing Manager at LinkedIn.
[bctt tweet="“Avoid producing random acts of content. Your content should be intentional and map back to business objectives.” — @amrynnie" username="toprank"]
Waynette Tubbs, Senior Content Marketing Manager at SAS, sees customers and their stories as important marketing elements not to be overlooked.
[bctt tweet="“Make your customer the hero. Tell your customers' stories about how they solve problems using your product.” — @WaynetteTubbs" username="toprank"]
Having a system in place that allows for consistently writing good content is especially important for Heidi Cohen, Chief Content Officer at Actionable Marketing Guide.
[bctt tweet="“To support your content creation engine, have an ongoing process within your organization to ensure you've got a constant flow of potential articles.” — @heidicohen" username="toprank"]
Finally, drawing out powerful emotions using content marketing is a timeless and enduring marketing element recommended by author and keynote speaker Mark Schaefer.
[bctt tweet="“Content that moves is power. Anyone has the opportunity to create influence and power through their content.” — @markwschaefer" username="toprank"]
Enduring Tactics Are As Inspirational As Ever
Mark, Ann, Lee, and the rest of these top marketing influencers bring into focus the importance of writing relevant and inspiring content.
When you incorporate these tactics — great writing that includes big ideas along with meaningful, inspiring, and intentional content that tells your customers' stories, you'll be well on your way to achieving content marketing success that endures.
After creating that first ASCII promotion for my BBS nearly 35 years ago, astounding changes have taken place in the technology behind our content marketing and the methods we use to share them, however some tactics remain just as relevant now if we’re willing to seek them out, and for that I think today’s marketers can be thankful.
Ready to learn more? See Lee present the latest best-answer marketing strategies at an upcoming conference, including Content Marketing World on September 4 - 7 in Cleveland, Pubcon Las Vegas 2018 on October 16 - 18, and MarketingProfs' B2B Marketing Forum in San Francisco on November 13 - 16.
The post 10 Inspiring Expert Quotes That Honor Timeless Content Marketing Best Practices appeared first on Online Marketing Blog - TopRank®.Read More »
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