Blogging doesn’t come easy. A lot of effort goes into coming up with ideas each day and spinning them out into useful articles for our lovely readers.
Some days are certainly harder than others and everyone suffers from writer’s block every now and then.
To help other bloggers through those dark times, I’ve come up with 14 places to look for inspiration when you’ve got a blank page in front of you and a looming deadline.
There are undoubtedly other tricks of the trade that I’ve neglected to mention, so please share your own sources of inspiration in the comments.
If one of the things we’ve learnt so far within digital marketing is that becoming more social is a key ways to succeed, does the installing of a paywall on newspaper run websites effectively mean ‘killing’ their shareability?
The most topical example of this is The Sun’s recent introduction of its subscription service. Named Sun+, this has attracted 117,000 subscribers to its £2 a week service in approximately three months.
With The Times, The Telegraph, Financial Times all having already installed paywalls at various points in their online existences, with varying degrees of success, has this made a difference to how their material is shared?
Do they even care? If they are making enough money from subscribers, then perhaps the volume of traffic is unimportant to them.
Within your own social circles, will followers of your channel be annoyed that you’re posting a link to something they need to pay for? This obviously introduces a whole new argument about the value of content, and whether it should be free or otherwise.
Our editor-in-chief Graham Charlton (pictured above) took an in-depth look at The Telegraph's metered paywall in his article earlier in the year, so let’s take a look at the other newspaper paywalls and attempt to shed some light on the questions raised.
The idea of being helpful, of providing content and resources to prospective and current customers that may not have anything to do with your organization, is a new and radical concept for many marketers.
"You mean you want me to publish content that doesn't sell my product?" The idea is simple: give people want they want and eventually they consider you a trusted resource.
But is being helpful enough? Is helpfulness really useful? Or are marketers spinning their wheels creating content that, even though it's helpful, no one really wants?
Although being helpful is something marketers should strive towards as a way to foster engagement, useful should be the end-goal: giving people content they need to solve their problems, when they need it, and in the specific format they want.
A key element for loyalty programs, especially in industries like retail and restaurants, is product purchase frequency. Frequently purchased products enable members to earn more reward currency and keep the product and the program top of mind.
Does that mean that products without a high rate of purchase frequency can't implement a successful loyalty program?
They actually can, it just requires a little creative thinking and a different approach.
Some time between 2010 and 2011: “We should get a Twitter account!” bellows a CEO in a boardroom after reading the term repeatedly in a broadsheet newspaper over the weekend.
“Everyone’s on Twitter, our customers are on Twitter, we should get a Twitter account, and we should Twit at customers and tell them how great we are. We don’t want to be behind the curve on this one. Not like we were when we didn’t have a website until last year," continues the imaginary ruddy-faced executive as he pontificates to a room full of lap-dogs and sycophants.
"Also we should be on Facebook... Also do people still use MySpace?”
So the company immediately got a Twitter account, and a Facebook page and a [insert name of popular social media channel here] account and it pumped as many press releases, corporate slogans and nakedly brazen ‘buy-me’ marketing bilge down the channel as it possibly could, forgetting a number of key points.
- It’s a channel. Traffic can, and indeed should, move both ways.
- Nobody gives a damn what your company has to say.
- Your company will run out of things to say.
Native advertising is one of the hottest marketing trends this year. From BuzzFeed to Twitter, the most admired businesses of our generation have been built on this supposedly new advertising medium.
However, from my experience, understanding of what it really means is surprisingly low. People might understand that it’s akin to what was traditionally called advertorial, but few recognise the nuances of what is a surprisingly diverse medium.
Harper Collins and its business development team are a great example of how publishers are adapting to the business of content, not simply bound sheaves of pulped wood.
In an indicator of how service-based the UK economy has become, Harper Collins now sums up its business as following:
"We create bespoke content based on products and campaigns for our clients."
"We work with content, not just books, across print, digital, mobile and more."
"Our editorial expertise, content and creativity enable clients to communicate brand identity and values."
One of the areas of the publishing house where this is most evident is Harper Collins Children’s Books. I decided to find out more about its business model.
Here are our top tips on the best ways that affiliates can use data feeds to increase their sales commission.
I should add a caveat here… ‘of varying degrees of quality’.
There are definitely six examples here, but I would suggest that only four and a half are actually 'innovative'.
I’ll start with the best one, which is the reason why I began this journey in the first place. Well that and an uncharacteristic wave of festive spirit after enjoying a post-lunchtime liqueur chocolate. Then if you can tread with increasing amounts caution through the remaining examples, that would be great.
So with the formalities dispensed with, let's begin...
Using video on a landing page can increase conversion by up to 86%.
This statistic comes from a study by EyeView on various ecommerce sites.
In the study, two different variations of the same website were built, with 50% of the traffic being directed to a landing page with an embedded video, the other 50% directed to a page without.
The website that achieved the largest conversion rate (86%) was an online tutoring service. This is clearly the type of company that would naturally benefit from a landing page video, as most of its content is likely to be delivered via that medium anyway. It’s a free ‘sampler’, a way to show how professional and useful your service is before the visitor has signed up for a subscription.
Video is one of the best and most persuasive of all visual tools as it’s capable of delivering large amounts of information quickly and succinctly. Especially if it's about a new service or product.