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The Way of the Content Marketing Dragon: Building Your Content Team So You Can Connect With Prospects and Customers Like Never Before

DragonYour content marketing team is responsible for planning and creating great content, as well as getting it out there so that prospects and customers read and engage with the content. Great content marketing all goes back to the quality of the content marketing team, so building a content team that’s able to tackle it with skill is essential.

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Content creation vs. content curation: What’s the right mix and how you can dominate your space using both

Curation

Creating your own content is the cornerstone of content marketing, and it’s where businesses tend to focus their energy. Sharing curated content from other sources on social media and on your own website can also be a useful way to engage with your audience. Below, we’ll take a look at how each type of content can benefit your business, as well as what the evidence says about striking a balance between content creation vs. content curation.

Advantages and Disadvantages: Content Creation vs. Content Curation

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The Big Content Marketing Secret That Only a Few Companies Practice – Listening to Your Customers and Acting on Their Pearls of Wisdom

Customer_voiceToo often in content marketing, we get focused on getting what we have to say out there. Although this is an important part of the process, one of the most important and often overlooked content marketing secrets is to continually listen to your customers and take action based on what you hear. In fact, one of the biggest strengths of content marketing as compared to traditional marketing is that customer feedback is a built-in part of the process, if only you take advantage of it. 

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The Undeniable Power of the Almighty Blog Title – How Buzzfeed and Upworthy Re-wrote the Rules of Capturing Attention

BuzzfeedOver the past few years, Buzzfeed and Upworthy have become central sites for viral content, especially among young people. Buzzfeed is famous for its GIF-heavy, humorous lists, as well as videos and news aggregated from other sites. Upworthy hosts content it describes as “substantial and sensational,” typically videos and infographics about social issues.

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Evergreen Content – What is it and How Can You Use it to Create Instant Thought Leadership in Your Industry

EvergreenEvergreen content, or content that remains relevant to users for a long period of time, should form a cornerstone of your content marketing efforts. This type of content can help you develop thought leadership, especially among readers just learning about your industry. Below, we’ll explore the basics of evergreen content, as well as where to look for some evergreen content ideas.

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10 Steps to Becoming a Powerhouse Story Teller and How it Can Make Your Company a Content Marketing Juggernaut

StorytellingBrand storytelling is big this year, from the blockbuster LEGO movie to Hello Flo’s hilarious, popular “First Moon Party” video. Brand storytelling is also present in quieter ways – from companies who use their blogs to talk about their history and values, to TED Talk speakers who draw on their personal experiences to engage audiences, to any content that recognizes the importance of the human element and uses storytelling as a tool.

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The Ultimate Guide to Re-purposing Your Content So it Works Hard for You – Over and Over and Over Again

Repurpose

No matter how much you appreciate the importance of content marketing, creating enough content each month can be a challenge to overcome. One of the best ways to overcome this challenge is by re-purposing content. By using the same content or concepts over and over again, you can continue to get value out of great pieces you developed in the past. 

The goal of re-purposing is to present it so that it reaches a new audience or else reaches your current audience in a new way. The most effective techniques can get you a lot of mileage out of a single piece of content. Below, we’ll take a look at the most effective techniques you can use to get the most out of your content. 

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The 8 Secrets of Powerful Content Editing to Turbo Charge Your Content Marketing Efforts

Secret

Writing the first draft of a piece of content is usually the fun part – next comes the task of editing your content so that it is cohesive, tight, and stylistically flawless. This process can be relatively lengthy and may require you to eliminate ideas or passages you were attached to. But the results are well worth the effort, as well-edited content is able to more effectively get your message across to readers.

 Use these 8 secrets of powerful content editing to turbo charge your content marketing efforts: 

  1. Choose a style. There are a number of style guides, such as AP, APA, and Chicago Style. Your company doesn’t have to draw on any one official style, but the style choices you make should be consistent. It’s important to create a company style guide that addresses general writing style, such as citations and the Oxford comma, as well as company-specific issues, such as how your company should be referenced. Content editing should be done with your style guide in mind.
  2. Walk away. After writing your content, don’t move to content editing right away. Instead, walk away for a few hours or a few days, to allow yourself to step away from the content. This lets you approach it with a new perspective, in which you’re able to see the content for how it is written rather than what you intended.
  3. Read aloud. For your first comb through, read the content aloud. This will help you to catch any awkward syntax or grammatical errors. It can also be helpful in terms of identifying misspelled words. Your content should sound natural when read aloud.
  4. Read with an outsider’s perspective. As you take a second read-through, approach the content with an outsider’s perspective. Without knowing what you intended to write, would the concepts seem clear? Is what you meant to address present in the content? Are your word choices meaningful and intentional? If not, you’ll need to edit your content so that what you intended to write is present.
  5. Go in batches. Much like trying to edit directly after writing, attempting to edit an entire piece or series of pieces in a single go can become a cloudy, frustrating experience. You don’t need to go quickly when content editing. Instead, go in batches, taking a break to clear your mind after each portion of the content has been edited.
  6. Err on the side of deletion. After writing something, it’s common to want to cling to each word and idea in the content. Avoid this tendency, and be ruthless in your editing. In most cases, it’s best to err on the side of deletion when it comes to content editing, as you identify parts of the content that don’t quite mesh with the overall message.
  7. Save eliminated content. Erring on the side of deletion doesn’t mean you have to completely eliminate the content you remove. You can make further use of your hard work by creating a file for content you eliminate when content editing. These concepts may serve as great ideas for future content. When you’re approaching your next round of content idea development, you can pull out your eliminated content and look for ideas that can be tackled in their own piece or incorporated into another planned piece.
  8. Hire content editing services. Content editing is a skill that many businesses don’t have the time or inclination to develop in-house. Hiring content editing services can ensure that your content is in tip-top shape. Content editing services can take into account your company’s tone, voice, and style guide as well as the general rules of copy editing. 

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The 9 Rules of Outsourcing Your Content Writing

Outsourcing

A successful content marketing campaign requires the creation of high-quality, search engine optimized content on a regular basis. Most businesses simply don’t have the time or writing skill to do it all in-house, which is why outsourcing your content writing is likely to be an important part of your content marketing. 

When you decide to use outsourced content writing services, it can be a challenge to find a writer who fits your needs. To make the process smoother, use these 9 rules of outsourcing your content writing: 

  1. Decide what to outsource. Many businesses choose to outsource all of their content writing, and doing this may be the right decision for your business. On the other hand, if you’ve been creating quality content in the past but want to outsource to help make the process more manageable, you may want to keep a few key features (for example, perspectives written by the CEO a couple times a month) written in-house.
  2. Set a realistic budget. When outsourcing your content writing, budget is one of the most important things to consider, as it will inform many of the other decisions you make. Your budget should be realistic in terms of the quality of content you can get with it. Although you might find a writer willing to work for a very small sum, that writer is unlikely to have a high level of skill or expertise, nor will they be willing to devote a significant amount of time to creating high-quality content.
  3. Create a workflow. Establish who will be in charge of outsourcing your content writing, and establish processes for assigning, reviewing, and posting content. This ensures that, even though your writing it outsourced, there is still accountability and established processes within your business regarding the content.
  4. Outsource to experts in your industry. There are some cases where it’s reasonable to outsource to a writer who is skilled but who may not be an expert in your industry. However, in many cases it’s wiser to outsource to experts in your industry. This can ensure that the information in your post comes from the writer’s education and experience, rather than online research. If you go through a content service, they should be able to assign you a writer who has expertise in your industry. In addition, you may be able to arrange guest posts from a well-known industry expert.
  5. Give direction on voice and tone. One of the biggest challenges businesses face when outsourcing content writing is that of maintaining a consistent voice and tone. If you have a voice and tone you’d like to maintain, give your writers direction on it. Should the content be in first person (I, we), second person (you), or third person (he, they)? Should the tone be conversational, journalistic, formal, or playful?
  6. Find a great content service. Using a content service is often the best method for finding content writers, helping you to avoid problems with quality associated with crowd-sourced services and problems with reliability associated with freelancers. At Content Launch, clients have access to over 300 writers who are experts in a wide variety of industries, ensuring that you’ll get great content at competitive rates.
  7. Give plenty of information to your writer. Your writer will do a significant amount of research to develop your piece, but they also rely on the information they receive from you. The writer should have access to any available materials, including information about your services. In some cases, you’ll be asked to fill out a business information form, or you or the writer may ask for a phone conversation.
  8. Look at writing samples. In some cases, you may have the opportunity to choose a writer directly. Before choosing, be sure to ask for writing samples, which can give you an idea of the writer’s style, range, areas of expertise, and skill.
  9. Send out sample assignments. You may not feel comfortable sending all your work to a writer right off the bat. Instead, consider sending out 1-2 sample assignments before making a commitment to a service or writer. This allows you to find a writer who’s a really good fit, and it gives you a chance to provide any necessary guidance or correction before the writer dives into writing a large number of pages. 

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