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Getting Your Content To Go Viral Isn’t Easy… But It’s Possible!

By | Content Marketing | No Comments

contentContent marketers want their content to go viral. There’s no surprise in that statement. Who wouldn’t want that? But you can’t just publish your content on a couple of social networks and expect it to spread like wildfire over night. Sorry folks, but that’s not how it works.

There is a science and an art to content marketing. Some believe it’s just a science, others just an art. But I say it’s both because content — good content that is — should stimulate your head (like science) and your heart (like art).

In order to get stimulating content that goes viral, follow these simple steps.

Message > Messenger

Your content’s message is 100 times more important than the messenger. Whether the messenger is you, some other professional in your industry you reached out to or a friend who shared it on Facebook, it doesn’t matter. If your message relates to people and is thought provoking, then various people will read and share it. You may not have 5,000+ Facebook friends or Twitter followers, but if you create a message that hits home with at least a few friends they’ll share it online or through word of mouth and that trend will continue to numerous people.

Create content that inspires and evokes emotion.

Inspire and evoke emotion with your content. That’s the kind that goes viral. When you brainstorm for ideas and begin writing, think about topics that will really impact your audience, topics that impact their mood, ambitions and passions. Help the audience think about something they’ve never thought about before or see a new side to a topic. Make an emotional connection with your audience through your words, pictures, infographics, videos and other forms of content. Also, remember people like to share content when they think it’s going to make them look good and/or smart so construct content with that in mind.

Write and then rewrite headlines.

Put time and effort into your content and do the same with your headlines. Headlines that aren’t catchy or attention grabbing won’t help your content get clicked on, read or go viral. Write a headline, rewrite it and then rewrite it again. Some people rewrite their headline 10-20 times before they’re satisfied, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Do it until you get it just right because headlines are crucial. Readers may never get to your content if they don’t like your headline.

Make it an obsession, not just a 9-to-5er.

Producing stimulating content and making that content go viral isn’t a typical 9-5 job. You can’t clock in and out like you do for a Monday-Friday, 40-hour-a-week job. Putting in eight hours a day isn’t enough. You need to stay connected every hour you’re awake if you expect to keep up with newsworthy topics, monitor social media and other websites for content ideas and network with people. Don’t think of it as a mundane job. Think of it as a needed, healthy obsession, and without that passion for it, your content won’t be what goes viral.

Don’t stop once you click publish.

So you brainstormed, produced content, edited it several times and just published it. Now you can sit back, relax and watch it go viral over the next few days, right? Wrong. Your content marketing job isn’t done there. It’s only just begun. Multiple things can and should be done once you’ve clicked publish: study the traffic data at the end of the day or the next morning to see how your content is doing; keep on top of conversations happening with and around your content piece; and lastly, be patient since it takes time for content to go viral. (Unless you’re Ellen, then you can shut down Twitter with your Oscar selfie picture.)

Other things that help…

  • Be conversational
  • Solve a problem
  • Start a trend
  • Write human stories
  • Make content interactive
  • Make content clickable and shareable
  • Find out why failed content didn’t go viral
  • Repurpose content
  • Post at 9 a.m. and noon EST (These are the optimum posting times since people are just getting to work and are on their lunch breaks.)

Producing great content and getting it to go viral, like we know all content marketers want, can be done and summed up in one tip — take responsibility for your content. When you care about something, you take full responsibility for it. When you do that with your content, it has a greater chance of going viral. So learn and master the art and science of content marketing by following these tips and hopefully your dreams of going viral will come true.

Three Crucial Components of Ensuring Your Content Gets Shared

By | Content Marketing | No Comments

connecting peopleAs many digital marketers have learned the hard way, SEO is no longer “optimize your page and chuck a whole bunch of anchor text links at it”. Instead, SEO is more of a “make sure your site is optimized, produce amazing content, and get linked to and shared”.

The problem for most marketers is, this is easier said than done. Seriously! Sure, any SEO can tell you that it’s all about content and “attracting” links and shares (because that’s all they’ve heard from thought leaders over the last two years), but very few can actually execute. In today’s post, I want to talk about three critical components that your content must have in order to truly attract links and social shares. These three components are relevancy, timeliness, and the ability to go viral.

Content Relevancy

The first component and in my humble opinion, the most important, is how relevant your content is to your target audience. If you don’t understand who your customers are, what their pain points and needs are, and how they use the internet to reduce their pain and fulfill their needs, then you aren’t going to be able produce content that’s relevant to them.

To create relevant content, you have to truly understand your target audience. I like to do this through buyer persona creation. Going through the process of identifying demographics, needs, goals, and marketing messaging is a huge step in creating content that’s relevant. If you are unfamiliar with personas, HubSpot does a great job at explaining it and they even have a nice little template to help you with your efforts.

Content Timeliness

The second component is how timely your content is. This one is tough, because not all content can be timely. I mean, a new iPhone is released only once per year, but when it’s released, everyone needs new screen protectors, cases, etc. You see where I’m going with this? To make sure that your content is timely, you need to on top of your industry and monitor changes or updates on a regular basis. To do this, you should subscribe to trade magazines and have an RSS reader set up that monitors news and chatter in your industry. When there’s news, make sure you have the resources to create content for your website (and external websites if you really want to kill it) and get it out fast. Doing so will help you become the thought leader in your space and will help you generate new business.

Ability To Go Viral

The third component is the ability to go viral. Before we jump into this, I pose this question: How many pieces of “text only” content have you seen go viral? Very few, right? I’m not saying that you need an interesting infographic or video to go viral, but when you put some time and resources into adding stunning photos, charts, and graphics into relevant and timely content, you have a better chance of your content going viral.

So when you are putting together your content strategy, don’t just think of fun or creative pieces that people might like. Take the time to strategize and work in these three components. Doing so will help your business grow by leaps and bounds.

Five Outside The Box Link Building Strategies You Can Implement Today!

By | SEO | One Comment

linksBuilding links solely through directories, articles, and guest blog posts is the archaic way of building links and if not supplemented with higher quality, natural links, you are going to find yourself struggling to compete in the search engines in a hurry.

Not only that, but building links like those mentioned above is extremely boring and you will find yourself and your team getting burned out quickly if you don’t put together some creative link strategies.

In today’s post, I’m going to address five “outside the box” ways to not only build links, but attract links, which is FAR more important. Let’s jump right in…

Interview Experts

One of the best ways to attract links to your website is to interview experts and post their responses on your blog. I’ve done this countless times, both in this industry, and in others and it works amazingly well.

So how do you get links when you interview an expert? Most of the time the expert either has a personal website, a company website, or both. Once you interview them, you can ask them to link to your piece, better yet, give them a unique piece of content (guest post) for them to post on their site announcing the interview. You can also ask them to share the content with their network of followers on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, etc.

I have found that 99% of the time, those individuals who I interview will at least share it on Facebook and Twitter, sending boat loads of traffic to my post. This also leads to more shares and links from those who find your post interesting. I’m telling you, this is a MONEY strategy!

Digital Assets

Another great way to attract links to your web site is by putting together digital assets like infographics, micrographics, whitepapers, eBooks, Etc. Infographics are great because they help make complex data easy to understand and when you do this, people like to link to them.

The key to generating links from your digital assets is to ask for the link back. In the case of an infographic, you should provide an embed code at the bottom of the post where people can quickly copy and paste it into one of their blog posts.

Lastly, you should put some promotion around each digital asset you put together. If you need help with some promotion strategies, check out this fantastic post.

Sponsor An Event

A very simple way to generate links to your website is to sponsor an event. Events like industry conferences, ALWAYS list each sponsor and in most cases, link back to their websites.

Another perk of sponsoring an event is that you are usually provided a free pass and if interesting enough, you can go and take advantage of what’s being discussed. To me, this is a win-win!

One thing you need to keep in mind is that sometimes, your link will be taken down in the future, which means that you will often times have to keep sponsoring their events. If you are a small company, this can get costly, so I’d look to sponsor on time events in hopes that the link will stay live for a long time.

Assist A Non-Profit

I absolutely love helping non-profits because it is an amazing way to give back to others. In our industry, we can give away services and consulting to help non-profits better optimize their websites for the search engines. I’ve found that in most cases, helping a non-profit will get you a link, so don’t discount this strategy.

The best part about this link strategy is that it doesn’t require any cash. If you have some excess capacity or product lying around, you can help a non-profit. Just make sure that your offer is “no strings attached” meaning, it won’t the non-profit money in the end. It needs to truly be free to them.

Give Away Valuable Stuff

Wanna know what people love more than free stuff? Free stuff that is actually valuable to them! One company that is doing this extremely well right now is Signs.com. The digital marketing team over there have come up with some awesome giveaways like their Spring Cling giveaway and their alphabet wall decal giveaway that they are promoting through several external websites. These giveaways are not only helping them attract new links, but also generating visibility through social media, which is huge for their business.

The trick here is taking some time to truly understand who your target audience is and what they would like for free. If you find the right people and give away the right things, you will get massive visibility!

So there you have it… Five “outside the box” link strategies that you can start implementing today. What other unique link strategies are you using to attract links? Please share with us in the comments section below.