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Your Kick-Start Guide Engagingto Content Engaging Content How to Produce Engaging Content Measuring Engagement CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
2 page 7 Introduction page 7 Part 1 Engaging Content Let’s get on the same page, shall we? page 14 Part 2 How to Produce Engaging Content Like the Pros page 24 Part 3 Measuring Engagement The Why’s, What’s and How’s page 35 Summary Your Cheat Sheet About the Author page 38 Thomas CliffordContents page 39 About CMI The Content Marketing Institute CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
3 Let’s say you went to a movie. Not any ol’ movie, mind you. . . But a movie so compelling you just have to tell your friends about it. Or jump on Twitter to spread the word. Or comment on blogs, YouTube or movie review sites. Maybe the movie inspired you to write your own blog post. Or perhaps you were inspired to read more about a certain topic. The movie compelled you to respond. You felt a need to tell others about your experience. You felt a connection. You responded & participated in some manner. You did something.Introduction CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
4 So what does all this movie stuff have to do with content marketing? In a word, it’s all about engagement. Content, like a great movie, can be engaging, too. Content can move your audience to respond in ways you might have never thought of. Today, marketers are in the “engagement” business: Customers expect it. Marketers, take note. If you’re new to content marketing or just wondering what all this fuss over “engagement” is about– we hear you.Introduction
5 So what does “engaging content” mean? Is there one definition we can all agree on? Two? Three? Does “engaging content” mean different things to different industries? Different markets? Different audiences? And the questions keep rolling Does “engagement” mean how many leads were generated? How many people commented? Web traffic hits? Twitter followers?Introduction
6 Professional content marketers must know How do they define “engaging content?” Is there a “secret ingredient” they look for when determining if a marketing piece is engaging? Imagine you’re at a roundtable of 20 professional content marketers and you asked them four simple questions: 1. “What does “engaging content” mean to you?” 2. “What tips can you share with others when they go about creating engaging content?” 3. “How do you measure engagement?” 4. “What tools do content marketers use to measure engagement?”Introduction Wouldn’t you love to hear the responses? Well, you can.
7 That’s exactly what Content Marketing Institute (CMI) did. They got on the horn, went to the source and asked the experts. Read on to find out how content marketing experts define, create & measure engaging content. You’ll also get some samples throughout.Introduction CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
8 Part 1 Engaging Content Let’s get on the same page, shall we? First things first: What does engaging mean? The CMI contributors all agreed – sort of. It’s no surprise that the contributors responded differently.Introduction But when you look beyond the variety of responses, certain patterns emerge. So what do the experts think “engaging content” means? You may be surprised. You’ll not only hear what engaging content means to them; you’ll learn the different qualities of engagement, too. Keep your eyes peeled. Engaging Content You’ll start seeing some common threads and connections.
9 Here’s how a few CMI contributing marketers define “engaging content.” “Engaging means the same thing to me thought-provoking information that “Engaging content offers something new: today as it did the first time I looked it directly speaks to their interests and a new perspective, an unexpected laugh, up in the Merriam-Webster dictionary needs. bits of knowledge, or something helpful, as a child. Engaging: ‘Tending to draw I – Influence - content that demonstrates inspiring or entertaining. Engaging favorable attention or interest.’ There your leadership, while also directing content gives your reader a peek at really isn’t a reason to add any more your audience to a certain behavioral something he or she hasn’t seen before, complexity to the definition simply outcome (permission marketing but can relate to in some way.” because we are now faced with the conversion, direct sale, etc.). -Shelly Bowen (@shelbow) challenge to produce ‘engaging’ content. V – Value - expressed by your audience’s Keeping it simple has its rewards.” willingness to share content and make “Engaging content is anything that - Jeremy Victor (@jeremyvictor) referrals on your behalf. provides value to the lives of your E – Economy - content that conveys prospects, customers or community “Genuinely engaging content is so critical information clearly and quickly, members. It does not have to be attractive and appealing that it disarms understanding short attention spans elaborate; it simply needs to be valuable. you from your very first encounter…and and the requirement to stand apart Everyone is always talking about makes you want to linger to learn more. from a crowd.” ‘relevancy’ and interchanging that with When it really connects with you, it will -Katie McCaskey (@KatieMcCaskey) “engagement,” but really it’s about how take your breath away. It’s a little bit like much value are you genuinely adding toEngaging Content love at first sight.” “Engaging content touches me on a person’s professional or personal life – -Newt Barrett (@newtbarrett) multiple levels. It stimulates me and, I’m not talking about your product.” intellectually by challenging my beliefs. -Barbara Gago (@barbragago) “I personally define ‘engaging content’ And it touches me emotionally by with the acronym ‘G.I.V.E.’: connecting with my hopes and fears.” G – Great content - defined by giving -John Nawn (@perfectmeeting) your audience useful, relevant, and CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
10 While the comments differ slightly, digging a little bit further reveals four characteristics of engaging content that you can integrate into your own marketing efforts. What are the four qualities of engaging content? 1. It is relevant 2. It is unique 3. It is entertaining and/or educational 4. It tells a story Here’s what a few CMI’s contributing marketers have to say about each aspect: Relevance: “I think the question has it wrong. The issue is not what it means to ‘me’ but what it means to my target audience. Something that’s dry as dust to me may be groundbreaking to others. The key toEngaging Content creating engaging content, as in all marketing, is beginning with the customer and his/her needs. Before you create a whit of content, you need to understand what your customers’ and prospects’ pressing problems are. Ask yourself — or better yet, ask your customers — ‘What are your biggest challenges?’ and ‘What’s keeping you up at night?’ Help solve those issues in your content and I promise you’ll get an engaged audience.” - Wendy Marx (@wendymarx) CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
11 Uniqueness: Storytelling: “Engaging content draws me into the moment. “Hyperbole and exclamation points do not It gets me to think, but not so much that my engage readers. Engaging content starts and ends head hurts. It leads me to see a need I didn’t see with telling a good story. Good stories require before, to view an old topic or idea in a new way, compelling characters, insider details and tales or to consider a different and better solution. of challenges overcome. Like every area of life, It’s unique. It subtly disrupts my way of thinking there is no shortage of good stories in the business without interrupting me like an ad. And engaging world.” content doesn’t feel like I’m being ‘marketed to.’ - David Drickhamer (@leanroi) Why? Because it focuses on me, not the marketer.” - Colleen Jones (@leenjones) So what does all this engagement theory mean to you? Entertaining/Educational: Let’s say your business is as common as shipping. “For a prospect, engaging content needs to do Or as basic as water. How can you integrate these one, or even better, both of two things: four qualities of engagement into your own 1. Help me content marketing strategy?Engaging Content 2. Entertain me This may seem selfish on the part of the prospect, Try using video. but their time is valuable. You simply must In the upcoming sections, you’ll see how video recognize who your prospects are and fulfill their easily captures all four qualities of engagement. needs and/or make them laugh.” We’ll also look at other non-video examples if video - Elise Redlin-Cook (@redlincook) isn’t the right approach for your organization.
12 Summary: What have we learned so far? 1. “Engaging content” means different things to different people. 2. There is no single definition for “engaging content.” 3. Four main characteristics of engaging content: ■ Make it relevant to your audience. ■ Provide something only you can provide (show your uniqueness!) ■ Be entertaining or educational. Better yet, offer both. ■ Use existing stories when you can or simply turn ideas into stories.Introduction 4. Video is a powerful and flexible engagement tool. Next step: What does “engaging content” mean to you and your company? Find out by starting conversations with fellow marketers on your team. Ask your colleagues. Keep your eyes and ears open when looking at content others are creating. Observe what engages you. If you’re engaged, there’s a good reason. See if you can adapt those ideas into your own content marketing plans. Engaging Content Hey, you may not be a Hollywood producer. . . . . .or a famous director. . . But now you know the “secret ingredients” for creating your own engaging blockbusters. Now that we’re on the same page, it’s time to show you five ways you can jump-start your own marketing content.
13 And , yes, it’s easier than you think. Let’s take a look at two “real-life” examples. “Real-life” example #1 Storytelling is a powerful way to create engaging content that combines all the qualities of engaging content: relevancy, education, entertainment and uniqueness. Let’s take a look at how ShipServ tells its story. Doug Kessler, Creative Director and Co-Founder of Velocity, created a two-minuteIntroduction video highlighting ShipServ’s online directory benefits. Doug: “For ShipServ, we did a stop-motion animation with Lego men to tell a simple story about their online directory — not something the shipping industry is used to (surprise is a key part of engagement).” The challenge, of course, was a bit tricky: How does an online directory go about creating a message that engages an audience? The solution will surprise you. Engaging Content Do yourself a favor. View the ShipServ video. It’s only two minutes. Bonus: It’s guaranteed to get your creative juices flowing!
14 What if stop-animation video isn’t a good fit for your brand? For whatever reason, stop-animation video may not be appropriate for your company’s image. That’s OK. There’s likely another video technique that can be adapted to suit your particular content marketing needs. “Real-life” example #2 How do you create content that engages an audience for something as simple and commonplace as water?Introduction Charity: Water found a solution. Charity: Water created a video that tells a compelling story from start to finish. Within the first fifteen seconds, you are hooked. And four minutes later, you are left with a strong call-to-action. If the Charity: Water video style feels like a stretch to produce, the format can easily be Engaging Content adapted. Interview your “hero” using video (like Charity: Water did). Then use your own in-house or stock photography and supporting graphics to enhance the story.
15 Part 2 How to Produce Engaging Content Like the Pros Ahh– snowstorms. Aren’t they beautiful? When you’re inside, that is. But, hey, what if you’re driving in a snowstorm?Introduction Um, then they’re not so beautiful, right? They’re a bit nerve-wracking! You could slip. Slide. Or lose traction all together. Unless, of course, you have snow tires. Engaging Content Snow tires give you an extra edge in snowy conditions. They grip the road better than regular tires – boosting your traction and keeping you from drifting and slipping everywhere.
16 Engaging content needs “traction,” too Content designed to engage an audience needs, um, “snow tires.” Without those “snow tires” for extra “traction” to engage audiences, it’s tempting for audiences to drift and eventually slip away from your message. Leaving you with little interaction. Interaction is the keyIntroduction With a few simple techniques added to your marketing strategy, you can learn how to give your content the extra “traction” it needs to start creating conversations, interacting and gathering feedback from your audience. And, yup, it’s easy to do. It’s pretty darn easy to create content these days Digital tools are ubiquitous. The cost of entry is often zero, or near zero. Engaging Content
17 For almost next to nothing, a It’s also possible to take existing company can: materials to create new forms of content ■ Publish a blog. ■ Turn white papers into several blog posts. ■ Write a manifesto and give it away. ■ Turn customer stories into articles, blog posts, ■ Create a video with a pocket-size camera. manifestos or short videos. ■ Produce audio podcasts. ■ Turn employee commitment stories into shareable media that can be shared across the globe. But it’s not enough for organizations to simply market themselves Customers are listening. Customers are participating. And, like you, audiences everywhere are beginning to create content.Engaging Content But how do you create “traction” and engagement for your content? How do you give content the “snow tires” and “grip” it needs for your audience? What methods can you rely on to encourage interaction with your customers? That’s where Content Marketing Institute’s pros come in! CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
18 CMI’s contributing marketers share five sure-fire ways to give your content the “traction” it needs for the “road to engagement.” 1. Think: Questions “The best way to engage your reader is by asking questions. I often start a blog post or a document with a simple question. Readers consider how they would answer the question and are immediatelyIntroduction engaged. They continue reading because they don’t have an answer and want to find out. If they have an answer, they continue reading to see if their opinion are shared by the author. Additionally, ending a blog post with a question is an effective way to get people to leave a comment and become engaged in your post.” - Sarah Mitchell (@globalcopywrite) 2. Think: Humanity “Organizations should pay attention to video not only in that it is a medium that combines the power Engaging Content of traditional branding methods but also that it works toward humanizing the business and creating connectedness between all levels of employees and their customers.” - Nate Riggs (@nateriggs)
19 “Use emotions to engage the brain. It doesn’t matter how well written your content is if readers aren’t emotionally involved in what you have to say. You need to engage their brains by appealing to their emotions. Here’s an emotional pathway of content written for results, from start to finish: ■ Negative, a painful problem, a fear ■ Positive, relief from a problem, benefits, imagine a better future ■ Neutral, rational, logical analysis of facts ■ Curiosity, desire, imagination ■ Objections, reasons why and why not ■ Scarcity, urgency, fear of consequences ■ Trust: social proof, statistics, case studies, personal stories ■ Call to action, clear next steps, reassurances, guarantees, security”Engaging Content - Patsi Krakoff (@Patsiblogsquad)
20 3. Think: Simplicity 4. Think: Empathy “For engaging content, start with the basics “Making content more engaging requires truly of style. Put at least half of your writing effort understanding your audience and the world they into coming up with a great headline and a live in.” powerful lead. Cut through cliché and hack away Can you “walk in your readers’ at hackneyed or formulaic introductions. Slash shoes” to better understand them? stilted language, junk the jargon-filled corporate- Can you identify individual reader and speak and marketing platitudes. Pull out a good buyer personas so you can customize the style guide, and read — again — the chapter recommendations and wisdom you offer in your on overblown language. Simple words, punchy content? Do you know what terms they use to refer sentences, short paragraphs are key. So much can to your product or service? How is your product or be accomplished simply by cleaning up the style, service relevant to them given where they are in before you even start to wrack your brain for novel, the buying cycle? interesting and engaging content.” - Jennifer Watson (@ContextComm) Making content more engaging requires careful,Engaging Content thoughtful and active listening so you can anticipate needs and questions and uncover patterns. The more you do so, the better you can craft uniquely engaging perspectives. CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
21 5. Think: Story “Don’t forget to check your ego “To make your content more engaging, tell a story and company- or product-centric that reaches out and grabs readers. Even better, notions at the door so you remain open to engaging with your they want to make it their own and share it. Here readers.” are four places to look for stories: - CB Whittemore (@cbwhittemore) 1. Brand exploits. Show another side of your personality that connects with readers. 2. Company history. Look for quirky tales and make them relevant now. 3. Current trends. Can you create a unique brand and/or company angle? 4. Customers. Think in terms of how your customers use your product or how it touches their lives at important life moments.” - Heidi Cohen (@heidicohen) All five elements have something in common These methods can be used anytime, anywhere –Engaging Content regardless of media. Do you have a new project coming up? Think about integrating a few of these techniques into your content – whether it’s video, audio or text.
22 “Real-life” example #3 On a tight budget? Have limited resources? Here’s a way your company can incorporate several engagement elements without breaking the bank. Take a look at Velocity’s The B2B Marketing Manifesto: Five Imperatives and Six Staples for Winning the Battle for Attention. Velocity co-founder Doug Kessler describes the thinking behind the manifesto: “For Velocity, the B2B Marketing Manifesto was designed to engage B2B marketers with an in-your-face tone of voice, an explicit challenge to B2B marketers and a bold design (using spray paint and stencils!).” - (@dougkessler) The result? A marketing tool that challenges readers is simple to read and feels human.Engaging Content CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
23 “Real-life” example #4 Is your organization passionate about certain issues? Then try using questions to stimulate engagement. It worked well for Sarah Mitchell. Sarah Mitchell of Global Copywriting wrote a blog post framing her position and then inviting readers to share their thoughts and feedback. “I discovered taking a stand is a really good way to get people engaged. I wrote a blog post titled, 6 Reasons for Refusing a LinkedIn Invitation, and it struck a nerve. The post went viral, garnered many comments on my blog and on LinkedIn, and continues to draw a reasonable amount of traffic months later. I started the post with a question and ended with one too. I got an earful of both positive and negative comments. I call that an engaging piece of content.” - Sarah Mitchell (@globalcopywrite) Publishing a blog is an excellent way to reinforce your commitment and create community dialogue.Engaging Content Another bonus: Blogs are often free or cost very little to own. CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
24 Wrapping up Next step: With digital content tools falling into the hands of Chances are pretty good you have some existing so many people, engagement is the next marketing marketing content kicking around the office. Take a frontier. minute and select a few pieces. ■ While engaging content opens doors for people to ■ What can you repurpose to start a conversation with interact and respond with you, it requires a slight your audience? shift in thinking. ■ Can you increase your “traction” by integrating any ■ Focus on the five engagement methods to boost of the five engagement methods into your blog? Or your content’s “traction.” by writing a brief manifesto? ■ The five engagement methods can be universally ■ Can you take a single product, service or area of applied across all types of media. expertise and create a three-part series inviting feedback from your audience? ■ Don’t let your content get stuck in a snowstorm of marketing materials. ■ Give your content the “traction” it deserves. After all, your audience is, um, waiting!Engaging Content So now you know what engaging content is. You know five ways to engage an audience. But how do you measure engagement? And what tools can you use to help you measure more quickly and accurately? Hop on over to section three to find out.
25 Part 3 Measuring Engagement The Whys, Whats and Hows 1. Considered your target profile? Check. 2. Created an engaging message? Check.Introduction 3. Published content to audience? Check. Hmm. Now what? Measuring Engagement It’s time to measure your engagement Achieving your marketing objectives depends on understanding who, where and how people are responding to your marketing content. Measuring that response is part of the engagement process. CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
26 Imagine hosting a surprise party for your best friend 1. You considered who to invite? Check. 2. Booked a band that rocks? Check. 3. Sent out attractive invitations? Check. But then, no one responded. Oops. The RSVP line on the invitation was missing. Um, there’s a slight problem You don’t know how many people will show up.Measuring Engagement How much food should be ordered? How many this, that and the other things will you need? Without measuring a response, it’s difficult to know the best direction to take. The same concept applies to content measurement. CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
27 Measuring content response is critically important for three reasons: 1. To see if your objectives are being met. 2. To understand what action your audience is taking. 3. To determine if you are reaching the right audience; not just acquiring numbers without a purpose. Let’s see how CMI’s contributing experts tackle each of these items: 1. To see if your objectives are being met “When measuring engagement you are measuring the effectiveness of content marketing – just as you’d measure other marcomm tools that deliverMeasuring Engagement on engagement. But it’s important to recall that engagement isn’t your end goal, it is delivery on objectives. It’s not enough to look only at ‘time spent per session’ or ‘unaided awareness’ – but to use all objectives’ measurements when and where possible. Engagement shouldn’t be your end goal, but delivery on your objectives should be.” - Keith Wiegold (@contentkeith)
28 2. To understand what action(s) 3. To determine if you are your audience is taking reaching the right audience, not “To measure engagement, marketers just acquiring large numbers need to understand how well their “Although how you measure content is moving buyers from engagement will depend on your one stage to the next. It starts business goals, I believe that it’s with including a call-to-action and critically important to remember that creating a unique landing page for quality matters far more than quantity. every content asset, and then paying Look for signs, both online and offline, attention to prospects’ online behavior that allow you to appreciate quality (coined “digital body language” by rather than quantity and gain context Steven Woods of Eloqua). By tracking for the engagement you’ve created. how and how often prospects are You’re much better off with fewer well- consuming content online, marketers qualified visitors who are eager to can gather clues about prospects’ consume your content – because it’s intent. Marketers can then combine relevant to them – than with an armyMeasuring Engagement these insights with information about of readers bouncing off your [to them] offline consumption of content, which irrelevant content. That way you can can be measured using sales force fine tune your content, strengthen the automation and CRM systems.” engaging qualities and possibly even - Stephanie Tilton (@stephanietilton) capture more quantity!” - CB Whittemore (@cbwhittemore) CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
29 Engagement is a process– not a goal This makes measuring engagement different for everyone. Defining goals differs from person to person, project to project and company to company. This naturally leads to two simple questions: With so many variables at stake, how do you measure the ROI? And what about acquiring impressive numbers – don’t numbers tell the whole story? Question #1: Does measuring engagement = ROI? “Measuring engagement isn’t really about ROI (at first),” says Barbra Gago (@barbragago). “What you are trying to understand is whether people are: ■ returning to your site (or social network) ■ asking questions or commenting ■ connecting with other community membersMeasuring Engagement ■ sharing your content ■ making comments about it elsewhere ■ spending more time on your site over time ■ attending events and tweeting (or talking) about them These are good metrics to start with, but remember to research your target audience. If they are not active in the “Forrester technographic ladder”, don’t plan on much proactive content coming from your users.”
30 Question #2: Does measuring engagement = impressive numbers? While numbers can be hypnotizing, they also don’t tell the whole story. Elizabeth Sosnow (@elizabethsosnow) emphasizes knowing your audience first. “Engagement is not about numbers; it’s about people. So, if you want to measure engagement, you better start by carefully researching and identifying the group of people you want to activate. You may not need an army of thousands. You may only need the right five people to care about your content. Once you have a clear picture of who your audience is, develop customized content. Now you are in position to develop metrics that reflect what success with this group of people will feel like. The benchmarks will vary greatly by company, but frequent starting points would be: 1. increased inbound links for key areas on your website, 2. click-throughs on social-only content offers, orMeasuring Engagement 3. active blog commentary.” Three popular areas of measurement Different distribution methods require different measuring tools. The three main measurement areas content marketers focus on are: 1. Websites 2. Social sharing 3. Content interaction CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
31 What types of engagement tools are available? There are five main categories of engagement tools available to measure audience interaction. The following list includes just a few examples of the many tools available to measure engagement levels. Feel free to explore them and decide which one(s) are best for your needs. 1. Listening ■ Hootsuite ■ Alterian ■ Google Alerts ■ Social Mention 2. Number and type of blog comments 3. Social sharing widgets ■ AddThis ■ ShareThis ■ Facebook LikeMeasuring Engagement 4. Social media stats ■ Facebook Insights ■ YouTube stats ■ Slideshare stats 5. Survey tools ■ Kampyle ■ ClickTools
32 Where do you begin? If you feel a bit overwhelmed and unsure how to start measuring audience engagement, there’s some good news. Start with these five favorite and popular measurement tools. These tools measure a range of content. Don’t feel compelled to use them all at first. Pick one or two that are appropriate for your needs and explore others later on. 1. Google Analytics 2. Facebook Insights “The starting point is often setting up a free “Facebook Insights provides good numbers, but in Google Analytics package on your own website. my opinion, it does not slice the data in a meaningful You’ll immediately have access to a vast array of way. We’ve started using some simple spreadsheets data, such as where are your site visitors coming in combination with the Insights data to work against from, how long do they stay, what content do our objectives. That said, doing this has helped us to they like best, etc. This is must-have intelligence uncover some trends related to offline interactionsMeasuring Engagement because these visitors are likely to be your biggest and fan base growth on the Facebook page.” ‘fans.’ They are the folks who already care about - Nate Riggs (@nateriggs) what you have to offer. More importantly, their data patterns can be the jumping off point to 3. Social Mention develop content for the folks who haven’t heard “To evaluate positive or negative sentiments of you – yet.” about a particular piece of content, I recommend - Elizabeth Sosnow (@elizabethsosnow) using Social Mention – a free tool that gives you real-time social media search results.” - Elise Redlin-Cook (@redlincook)
33 4. Email marketing software 5. PDF tracking analytics “Capture registration information when your “Email marketing software like MailChimp provide PDF is downloaded and read.” its own measurements for success.” - Stephanie Tilton (@stephanietilton) - Sarah Mitchell (@globalcopywrite) Does creating engaging content really make a difference? It may seem like spending time educating an audience isn’t a smart investment of time. The reality is this: Creating content designed to engage people takes time. Is there a payoff? Let’s take a look at two examples. “Real-life” example #5 CMI contributor Stephanie Tilton shares her insights on two examples of engaging content – drawing in audiences andMeasuring Engagement generating measurable results for both companies. Boosting inbound leads through education FireEye microsite “This customized site offers a range of content – including podcasts, video, eBooks and white papers – intended to educate IT administrators and executives on the confusing topic of malware. In the four months after the site was launched, about 28% of all inbound leads came directly from the microsite.”
34 “Real-life” example #6 Driving new business opportunities with a free eBook Dow Jones Taxonomy Folksonomy Cookbook “This eBook features a really fun design and offers a refreshing – and easy-to-understand – exploration of the topic of enterprise metadata. First launched in June 2008, the eBook was downloaded more than 1,600 times and pumped 50 solid business opportunities into the sales pipeline by 2009.” Measuring content mixes scienceMeasuring Engagement and art. First, you’re a scientist. You collect any data you have access to and examine it. Then, you’re an artist. You look for patterns, themes and new directions to explore. CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
35 What’s next? Now you know the why, how, and what about measuring engagement. Here are three things you can start doing immediately: 1. Determine your objective(s) when measuring engagement. 2. Decide what type of engagement you will measure. 3. Choose which measuring tools will help you reach your business objectives. Hey, you may not be hosting a surprise party for your best friend But you just may surprise your audience with some captivating content.Measuring Engagement
36 Summary Your Cheat Sheet Engaging Content Simplified Crunched for time? Looking for the engaging content “code” from this ebook? Here ya go! This section sums up the entire ebook. You’ll find the summary for each section along with “Action Items” for each section. Speaking of action – now it’s your turn. It’s your turn to start talking to others, create interesting and fun content for your audience and share it with the rest of the world. On behalf of the entire CMI team, we wish you the very best in all your future content creations!Summary CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
37 Step #1 Grasp the Basics 1) “Engaging content” means different things to different people. 2) There is no single definition for “engaging content.” 3) Four main characteristics of engaging content: ■ Make it relevant to your audience. ■ Provide something only you can provide (show your uniqueness!). ■ Be entertaining or educational. Better yet, offer both. ■ Use existing stories when you can or simply turn ideas into stories. 4.) Video is a powerful and flexible engagement tool. Action Items: Define “engaging content” ■ Define what “engaging content” means to you and your company. ■ Start conversations with fellow marketers or colleagues on your team. ■ Open your eyes and ears when looking at various types of content. ■ Observe what engages you. If you’re engaged, it’s for a good reason. ■ See if you can adapt those ideas into your own content marketing plans.Summary CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
38 Step #2: Gain Traction Action Items: Chances are pretty good you have With digital content tools falling into the hands of so many people, some existing marketing content engagement is the next marketing frontier. kicking around the office. Take a ■ While engaging content opens doors for people to interact and respond minute and select a few pieces. ■ What can you repurpose to start a with you, it requires a slight shift in thinking. conversation with your audience? ■ Focus on the five engagement methods to boost your content’s “traction.” ■ Can you increase your “traction” ■ The five engagement methods can be universally applied across all types by integrating any of the five of media. engagement methods into your blog? Or by writing a brief manifesto? ■ Can you take a single product, service or area of expertise and create a three-part series inviting feedback from your audience?Summary CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
39 Step 3: Start Measuring Measuring content response is critically important for three reasons: 1.) To see if your objectives are being met. 2.) To understand what action your audience is taking. 3.) To determine if you are reaching the right audience; not just acquiring numbers without a purpose. Thomas Clifford is a content marketing writer and copywriter helping B2B companies Action Items: Here are three things you can start doing immediately to measure your engagement levels: ■ Determine your objective(s) when measuring engagement. ■ Decide what type of engagement you will measure. ■ Choose which measuring tools will help you reach your business objectives.Summary CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
40 Action Items Print This Page Step1 Grasp the Basics: Step2 Gain Traction: Step3 Start Measuring: Define “engaging content” Chances are pretty good you have Here are three things you can start ■ Define what “engaging content” some existing marketing content doing immediately to measure kicking around the office. Take a your engagement levels: means to you and your company. minute and select a few pieces. ■ Determine your objective(s) when ■ Start conversations with fellow ■ What can you repurpose to start a measuring engagement. marketers or colleagues on your conversation with your audience? ■ Decide what type of engagement team. ■ Can you increase your “traction” you will measure. ■ Open your eyes and ears when by integrating any of the five ■ Choose which measuring tools looking at various types of engagement methods into your will help you reach your business content. blog? Or by writing a brief manifesto? objectives. ■ Observe what engages you. If ■ Can you take a single product, you’re engaged, it’s for a good service or area of expertise and reason. See if you can adapt those create a three-part series inviting ideas into your own content feedback from your audience? marketing plans.Summary CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
41 About The Author Thomas Clifford is a content marketing writer and copywriter specializing in online business-to-business copy. Tom helps professional service firms generate and nurture leads through helpful and valuable content like blog posts, eNewsletters, sales pages and free special reports (mini-eBooks). Tom spent 25 years as a multi-award-winning producer interviewing more than 1,500 people for over 500 marketing/ branding films. He brings his street-level interviewing experience to every writing project and approaches each assignment from the viewpoint of the people who would benefit from it the most — prospects and customers.Thomas Clifford Tom is featured in the book “Content Rules: How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engage Customers and Ignite Your Business.” He has also written dozens of articles as an “Expert Blogger” for FastCompany.com. He graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans with a BA in Communications. You can read more of Tom’s work at Content Marketing Institute. Contact Tom. Connect with Tom on LinkedIn. CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTE
42 About the Content Marketing Institute The Content Marketing Institute (CMI) helps transform marketing as we know it by turning marketing professionals into publishing experts. In other words, we teach marketers how to own their media channels instead of having to rent them through advertising. We do this through events like Content Marketing World, media properties like Chief Content Officer magazine, and strategic consulting and research for some of the best known brands in the world. CONTENT MARKETING INSTITUTEAbout Us
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