Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Web Content: Following a Marketing Strategy and Writing with Purpose

Content marketing is defined as the marketing and business process for creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience. The objective of content marketing is to drive profitable customer action.

More succinctly,content marketing increases traffic to your website so that viewership of your site goes up and hopefully sales follow. In the words of many: Content marketing is king.

What kind of content can accomplish these goals? Excellent content. Begin by defining your audience. Where do they hang out on the Web and how can you interest them in paying a visit to your site. There's a ton of research on the Web so find out about users of Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and the other social media giants as well as newcomers to the field.

When you determine which sites best match your target visitors, then you will know where to concentrate your content and how to write in a manner which will be relevant to those people. If they like what you have to say, being social, they're likely to share it.

So, don't just write random stuff. Seek to consistently appeal to the audience that you want to reach. Have a strategy and write with that strategy in mind.

Monday, October 24, 2016

How Accelerated Mobile Pages and Instant Articles Could Affect Your Blog

Google's Accelerated Mobile Pages or AMP has been around for about a year. If you haven't heard about them they, along with Facebook Instant Articles and Apple News seek to speed up delivery via mobile devices.

While at first thought a good idea, challenges are now appearing in the encoding process to make these delivery methods work for the broader market. There is concensus around the fact that coding today is more complex than ever. So who wants to revert to the time when to be an online writer meant that you needed to be an online coder or pay to have your content coded?

Of course, no one is forcing you to use any of these platforms designed for mobile speed. However, the looming problem seems to be that AMP and Facebook Instant Articles are being favored in search results by their respective parent companies.

Apple, as well, is urging its users to use Apple News. For you that means that to monetize your content on Apple it is necessary to use Apple News.

The concern is that as Google and Facebook attract more and more content, smaller publishers will simply miss out. Will this affect you? Maybe, maybe not. However, it is a fact that growth of news consumption via mobile devices stands at 72% of market share versus 54% in 2013, according to a Pew Research survey.

Bottom line, if you count on press to get people to your blog, you may need to give mobile news content distribution and greater consideration.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

MAVEN App Provides A New Income Stream For Bloggers and Reviewers

Are you a blogger or a reviewer who likes to recommend products? Referral programs let you earn a small percentage of a sale whenever they lead a customer to certain sites like Amazon, Nordstroms and Best Buy.

However, those referral programs can be extremely complex and may not be worth it for anyone who's not a full-time reviewer. A company called Maven wants to change that, combining the profits of a referral program with the ease of a Pinterest board, allowing anyone who has a recommendation to earn something for their suggestions.

Users can post products from more than 3,000 retailers, including high-end fashion stores, electronics warehouses and big-box stores. They can add items by searching for them on Maven or by using the “Mavlet,” a bookmarklet that grabs items from retailers' webpages.

For each item, Maven does the hard work of generating the custom referral link from its partner sites. The item can then be added to a "board" with similar items. Boards can be shared via links on social networks or embedded in articles and on websites, allowing trendsetters to easily monetize their recommendations.

When a reader clicks on the recommended item, they are taken to a store page like Amazon or Target and the recommender will get credit for generating that sale.Maven’s users get a set percentage of every item bought through their links, with some retailers offering 20 percent or more of the sale. The company takes a small cut of each referral bonus.

“Maven was built to encourage peer-to-peer recommendations and reward those who are good at it,” said CEO and co-founder Jess Waldeck. “We try and create a large net of possibilities because we're not really focused on a certain industry,” Waldeck said. “What we want are people that are willing to use their network to share and willing to share their recommendations to earn.”


Friday, October 7, 2016

Questions to Ask Before Starting A Blog

I'm switching gears in this post to talk to blogger's with regard to content and starting a blog. Before begin a blog you need to determine what really interests you. What topic would you be interested in finding out more about and posting about on a regular basis?

Sometimes your blog topic is obvious such helping to support an online or local business that you have. If you are not selling anything, then you may be blogging to support your place in a professional field or your may be a writer and simply choose a topic that you are interested in and feel the need to share with others. You may also plan to write a book on the topic, so that the blog posts can become a book or help to promote the book.

Once you have that narrowed down to one or two areas, determine the targeted audience for each. Then do a Google search to determine how many blogs are already out there. If the topic has minimal exposure, you can step in to fill an overlooked niche. If it is a crowded topic then you need to find a name for your blog that can be easily found. Make it original, easy to spell and easy to remember.

If you find yourself in a crowded field make sure that you use a unique voice for your blog and cover areas that may not be well addressed by others. Don't be discouraged if the field for your blog topic is crowded. Many times readers will follow several blogs on topics that interest them.