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The Competitive Advantage

tag: content marketing

November 6, 2018

6 Reasons Why eBooks are a Great Marketing Tool

eBooks have been a staple of content marketing for some time. Loosely defined as booklets of multiple pages (usually 8 or more), well-designed and covering fairly broad topics, eBooks have proven to be a great marketing tool. If you’ve not considered producing an eBook for your firm, here are 6 reasons why you should.

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October 16, 2018

Case Studies: Your ‘Proof Source’ for Closing Deals.

This past week, I sat in on a webinar entitled, “How to Engage and Sell Today’s Corporate Research Buyer,” hosted by GreenBook. It was the presentation of data collected by GreenBook, Collaborata and David Harris. In it, a lot of really good information was presented, but one of the recurring themes – directly stated by the buyers themselves – was the value of ‘case studies’ and their role in the buying decision.

Some content – eBooks and checklists, for example – are used to generate interest and awareness… to get prospects into the “top of the funnel.”

Other content – for the middle of the funnel – is used to educate and inform (and showcase your Subject Matter Expertise). Think webinars, blog posts and infographics.

But at the bottom of the funnel – at decision time – your prospective buyer wants proof. Proof that you can do what you say you can do… and that’s where case studies come in to play.

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August 7, 2018

Not blogging yet? Here are 10 reasons why you should!

I was having a conversation about marketing last week with the owner of a small firm… and we covered a broad range of topics. When we got to ‘blogging,’ he asked, “Why should I blog?” When I saw that he wasn’t kidding, it dawned on me that there may be many small business owners in the same boat – questioning the value of a consistent writing program like blogging.

So, for you, Mike – and small business owners everywhere – here are the top 10 reasons why blogging MUST be a part of your marketing mix:

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March 20, 2018

Stop Using Content Marketing to Sell

I’ve been a subscriber to INC. magazine for years. I take away a nugget or two from every issue. In this most recent March/April issue, I started to read an article about a concept called the “active office.” It looked interesting.

The article began with what appeared to be an interview with the CEO of VariDesk, a manufacturer of sit/stand workstations. As I read further, I realized it wasn’t an article, but a well-written sales pitch and ‘advertorial.’ At the top of the page was the tiny header, “Branded Content.” And right next to the article was a full-page VariDesk ad.

It really angered me (both VariDesk and INC.)… trying to hide their advertising under the guise of editorial content, even designing the page so that it looked like a standard article. Now, whenever I read any article in any magazine, I look for the “Branded Content” header at the top of the page. Kind of sad, huh?

It was the perfect example of a lesson we share with all of our clients and emphasize during conference presentations…  Stop using content marketing to sell!

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August 15, 2017

Content Marketing Has No Value, If No One Sees It!

content marketingIt’s very interesting… almost all ‘content marketing’ planning sessions focus solely on the first word: content – what topics are to be covered, who you’re writing for, which keywords should be focused on, which format you will use (blog, case study, eBook, infographic, etc.) and who’s going to create it.

But that’s only half the equation. Many people (most, in fact) assume because their content is “good” (at least they think it is), that it will be found by their target market. Not necessarily!

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May 23, 2017

How to Max Out Lead Generation for MR Firms

leads3Fact: Not every ‘sales lead’ becomes a client.

But every client was – at one time – a sales lead. Can’t happen any other way! Sales leads are the lifeblood of growth for every MR organization. Generating (and qualifying) them should be a top-priority strategy for everyone involved in sales and marketing at your firm.

There are numerous ways to generate sales leads, but the two most effective ones in our industry are:

  • Gated content
  • Conference participation
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May 16, 2017

Content marketing stalled by writer’s block? Here’s what I did.

writers-blockFor the past five years, I have posted a blog once a week, virtually without fail. As a provider of content marketing services, we not only have to talk the talk… we also have to walk the walk. But after nearly 250 posts… I hit a wall. For the first time since we started Harpeth Marketing, I had writers’ block.

It’s not that I couldn’t come up with any good ideas for posts, I couldn’t come up with any ideas… period! It was truly frustrating.

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March 14, 2017

“Why should I care?”… the question your website visitors are asking!

Why-should-i-careYour clients don’t care about what you can do… they care about what you can do for them.

We’re working with a new client who has developed a unique market research methodology. It’s really very interesting and kind of heady stuff – with a lot of science behind it. And that’s exactly how it’s described on their website. Which is fine.

In fact, that’s how most firms describe their products and services on their websites in our industry: “here’s what we do”… “and it’s really neat”… “and we’re really great at it!”

Meanwhile, your website visitors – a.k.a. potential clients – are reading that copy and asking themselves, “So what?! Why should I care?”

And they’re absolutely right… why should they care? You haven’t given them a reason to.

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