The Power of Positive Thinking, 17.1.14

If you’re in London with us you’ll be enjoying the upturn in the weather (although now that I’ve mentioned it I’m sure it’ll end), our American friends will not have been enjoying the climate so much these past couple of weeks. The economic climate however, is looking fairly sunny for arguably the first time in six years. Unemployment is generally falling across much of the developed world, the banks are starting to rally, and expectations are starting to reach for the sky again. Long may it last!

After Content Shock: What’s Next?

Our friend Doug Kessler posts a dissenting reaction to Mark Schaefer’s controversial post last week decrying content as a sustainable strategy, alleging that the excessive amount of it flooding the internet will lead to it’s devaluation as a marketing tool. Mr Kessler disagrees, reckoning that content should not be regarded as one entity that is reaching critical mass, rather than each individual piece is relevant to a narrow slice of a particular market, and so saturation is not a concern, at least not yet. There is also the point that as content’s ubiquity grows, it should be regarded as being less effective, merely that it should be regarded as more necessary in order not to be left behind by one’s competition. Let us know your thoughts in the comments section!

– As with most things, those with more talent/resources to invest in content will see the best results.
– This holds true regardless of the volume of content available.
– Social media is the most effective quality control system yet invented, and can still be relied upon to highlight the best content available.

Online Content Marketing in 2014: 5 Big Shifts in Store

As the digital marketing landscape continues to evolve, strategies to maximise the effectiveness of content will evolve as well. Perhaps the days of hiring a freelance writer to sit at the back of the marketing suite alone tapping thoughts into his Macbook Air are over, content is important enough to demand an integrated approach. Hana Abaza is predicting some major changes in the content space for 2014. After all, 92% of marketers are now making use of content, and 58-60% of marketers are planning to increase their content budgets this year.

–  It’s time to think seriously about diversity and skill sets in your content team.
– Focusing on a few avenues of marketing is no longer enough, content marketers will need to be exploring all methods, all the time. This includes mobile, static, all of the major social networks and any other methods that may be evolved into the mainstream.
– Custom content streams are the future, using automation to narrow down only the most relevant/interesting content into one place, the market has evolved another filter. Content must work harder than ever to pass in front of as many relevant eyes as possible.
– Branding is moving back into the fore, but not with dusty old outbound marketing. With Yahoo’s partnership with Katie Couric, brand-centric, sponsored journalism is becoming a major marketing tool for building awareness and a brand identity.

The Power of Authors and Content for Link Building

Got a spare 20 minutes? Dive into this meticulous study of the methods and pitfalls of link building. Looking at many ways of narrowing down good content both by hand and by automation, finding productive and successful content creators and how to build relationships with them in a  mutually beneficial fashion. There are an broad and varied selection of tools available from businesses around the world to assist in this endeavour, and the contacts you make will have skills and their own contacts which you can utilise in order to advance towards your marketing goals.

– Quality over quantity!
– Increasingly authors and their brand are more important than the hub through which their content is published.
– Content is critical to good SEO.
– Identifying major players within an industry is crucial.

Analyst Faceoff: Is the Marketing Campaign Dead?

Beck vs Sorofman. Two market experts debate a shocking but not-completely-unlikely claim: that the traditional marketing campaign of yore, with it’s time constraints, specific budget and dedicated goals, is no longer relevant in today’s highly-interconnected market. It is easier than ever for consumers to compare products within a market segment and when the customer has such effortless access to all of the relevant information, is a flashy dose of marketing going to sway them?

– With the huge volumes of information now available to consumers, traditional marketing campaigns designed primarily to raise awareness are becoming irrelevant.
– Constant, high-quality marketing and content output is what is required to build brand identity and image that will see the best results.

It is worth noting that the EConsultancy article featured in last week’s roundup is still all the rage on Twitter, displaying impressive longevity. Clearly a well received piece of literature!