My oh my was it a good week for getting some inbound marketing education! Here are the 5 best inbound marketing articles from this week:
The incorrect assumption by many small businesses that are just getting started with content marketing, that all of their content has to be unique keeps many SMBs from getting started. While you certainly need a good volume of unique content, you should also have an ongoing effort to repurpose the content you create. For example, you write a series of posts on your blog surrounding a certain topic. Could you combine those posts into a longer form piece of content like an ebook? Could you take an ebook that you've created and do a youtube video or infographic on the topic? Additionally, you have the option of updating a piece of content you've previously written to account for industry changes. The bottom line here is that you can re-use your content assets online and offline.
This chart shows a breakdown of the inbound marketing channels that those interviewed identified as being used for lead generation and then retention of existing clients or customers. To me it's important to highlight that highest percentage of web marketers are using pay-per-click search advertising to generate leads, followed by online display advertising, then SEO. So many businesses are put off by the idea of using PPC for their business. If it can yield a positive ROI and generate high quality leads, you should be using it. In fact, you're doing yourself, your employees and your company a disservice by NOT using it.
Many small, local businesses focus much of their efforts on Facebook. It makes sense to a certain degree because a local business usually has many personal local connections that will help spread the word. I'd challenge you though to remember a time in the past when you were looking for a plumber or wedding gift and started off by searching in Facebook? You may be of the rare and Facebook-obsessed bread that starts all of your searches there, but I'd be willing to bet most people hit up Google first. This is all the more reason that your local small business should be putting work into a Google+ business page. Did you know that the local listings you see when you search for a local resource are generated from Google+? Well, now you do. Read this article and get started right!
Videos are excellent ways to learn online. According to this great chart, 67% of consumers are most interested in how-to, instructional or tutorial videos. Can you produce a short how-to video to display on youtube and your website? It doesn't take much more than a smartphone and windows movie maker to put together a pretty high quality instructional video.
Mike Elgen is an evangelist for the Google+ platform and runs "The Blogs Of August" challenge where he challenges you to ditch your blog for a month in favor of blogging through Goolgle+ posts. It's a really interesting idea as Google+ is very accepting of longer posts where it's very taboo on Facebook and impossible on Twitter (140 chars). In this Google+ post Mike links to a gentleman that has taken this challenge in the past and never looked back. The engagement is better, as well as the reach. Maybe you should give it a try! Especially if you don't already have a blog.