It starts with content. That is Bloeise's slogan as a content marketing agency focused on content creation. But of course there is much more to it, because you ultimately want to achieve measurable results with your content. This content marketing reference work is intended for companies that focus on content to improve the entire process: from strategy to ROI. Expect a lot of smart tips from practice and few blabla. After all, it's all about the content!
How should I read this?
This content is intended as a practical reference work for the content coordinator: the person responsible for content within your company. The commercial we-of-toilet duck story can only be found at the bottom. Jump to the chapters or request the PDF directly:
- The choice for content marketing
- Content strategy: from A to B
- Content planning: who does what and when?
- Content creation: do it yourself or outsource it?
Six tips for better content creation
- What kind of content do you need?
- The content coordinator: that's how you organize things
- Content promotion
- From content to conversion - six tips
- Introductory offer
1. The choice for content marketing
A website starts with content: texts, images and products. You then grow your traffic with the use of SEO, email marketing, SEA and social. For all four you need content again: optimized blogs that pop up in search results, downloads to get newsletter subscriptions, news, landing pages, nurture emails and social posts. While you may not actively opt for content marketing, most companies do.
The conscious consideration for content marketing has the following pros and cons:
|+ SEO TRAFFIC||- COST MONEY
|+ LEAD GENERATION||- TAKES TIME
|+ THOUGHT LEADERSHIP
||- ROI ASKS FOR FOCUS
Do you want to zoom in more on the why question and possible objectives? Read the first part of it B2B Content Marketing.
2. Content strategy: from A to B
You can always start simply. But then you cannot fully follow whether all the time and investments actually deliver. In my booklet marketing means the optimal use of your resources to achieve your goals. Maximum effect with minimal deployment. That's why you put it on paper. That really does not have to be an extensive book of 34 editions, you just want to be able to start according to a plan. A strategy is no different from A to B. This is how you efficiently put your strategy on paper:
- Write your business situation on one sheet of paper: in which market are you, B2B or B2C, who is your target group, what challenges do they have, what goals do you want to achieve, what does the sales process typically look like, which customer questions should you address and how do you do that now. Use a buyer persona: a typical customer described as a person. Ask yourself: is this the customer we want as a company? Who is that ideal customer?
- State the steps of the sales process. The second A4 is for the customer journey to map the information needs. It typically consists of attention to the problem, possible solutions, criteria that determine the best solution, purchase and possibly service. Each step requires specific content to answer the questions in that phase, so that the customer can go to the next phase. Think from your buyer persona: how does he buy and what should he or she know? Through which channels is which information available? Involve someone from sales.
- Name the numbers. Let the marketing manager and sales manager put numbers per month on the customer journey. How many sales per month, what is the quotation score, where does marketing transfer the leads to sales, how many leads become quotes, how many website visits turn into leads, what are the conversion rates? Google Analytics helps with measurement.
- Set your marketing goals. At the bottom, you naturally want to make more sales and profit and attract more ideal customers. How you do that determines your strategy. More conversion? Want to put sales in contact with the leads faster? Or just fill the funnel with more customers in the attention phase? That is content marketing.
3. Content planning: who does what and when?
A schedule gives everyone peace of mind. The writer knows what to do and when and colleagues can record appointments well in advance in their agenda. With content planning you put man-hours (tasks) and phases in content production (deliverables) away in time:
- Start with a simple schedule: one or two blogs per month is great for setting up the process. Is that going well? Then you can scale up to the desired one blog per week. Ditto for all your other content: start small because in the beginning the process must be set up. Every new form of content brings new challenges: a landing page must be properly tracked and promoted, a white paper requires more input, feedback and attention.
- Verify the schedule: can you provide feedback within two days? Or do you need five working days earlier? Is that enough time to change the article? Everyone must agree with the schedule. That external writer too, because it typically has multiple assignments that are 'approved but not yet started'.
- Verify the desired steps: make sure you are familiar with all the steps so that you are not confronted with sudden delays. Typical points for attention are: determining the approach, planning and doing the interview, approving the first draft, correction work, translation, layout and web design, content promotion, evaluation.
Download a standard content planning here (without registration)
4. Content creation
As a content creation agency, Bloeise has the most to say about this topic. Create your own content or outsource better? How do you determine the price? What content do you need to achieve your goals? What options do you have for that? The most important thing to remember: beautiful content is not the goal. It's about what you can do with it. Therefore, do not focus on super-cheap or super-quality content. Always connect content creation with your objectives, so that you can then determine the best approach. Also don't be afraid to try something or other.
4.1 Do it yourself or outsource?
Really good content is the result of collaboration. You do not necessarily need an external company such as Bloeise for that. If the necessary qualities are internal but present and are assessed for their value. Outsourcing only becomes interesting if you want to use expertise and expertise to improve the process and results. Consider the following advantages and disadvantages when considering whether to do or outsource content creation:
Do it yourself
|In principle, a change is implemented in this way and decision makers and implementers can quickly contact each other. Because the process remains within one organization, the chance of a successful approach is greatest: it is clear what the brand stands for. In addition, your own editors can spend more time on research and the production of content. Own employees are simply cheaper.||Outsourcing is scalable: you can quickly have more capacity. An external party provides texts when you need them, thereby bringing focus to your content marketing. You also purchase the necessary knowledge and experience, with which you can support an internal learning process. An external copywriter has an objective view of your company and typically there is positive cross-fertilization through work for other customers. Text control is in good hands.|
|The dynamic workplace can result in non-compliance with agreements. If the interest is not clearly understood by everyone, the focus drops. A task such as 'just writing a text' is quickly assigned to someone on the basis of availability, not necessarily on the basis of talent. Content production often loses out in crowds, because the internal copywriter often also has other tasks, for example in the role of content marketer. A clear publication schedule and clear agreements are needed, just like the last text check before publication.||You first have to find the right party who understands how you work and with whom you can switch easily. This costs money and does not solve all your problems, such as internal politics. The party must also understand what you stand for as a brand. A style guide is advisable to determine the tone and identity of your brand in written word. Availability of freelancers is not certain, so set long-term goals. Tasks must be clearly defined and as a client you remain responsible for the expressions of your brand.|
From strategy, planning, creation or promotion: a content marketing agency is often widely applicable. Make an inventory of how you handle matters yourself and where you are looking for improvement. A content marketing agency can then make a specific offer or give you advice.
4.2 Determine price when outsourcing
If you are just starting with content marketing, you often have no idea what it actually costs. Certainly if you did it yourself until now, everything feels way too expensive. Content marketing agencies use different prices: standard prices per product, customization or invoicing per hour or word.
- Standard prices. Ideal because you know exactly where you stand. The agency must take a wider margin to be able to fully cover all common situations. For example, a technical blog about polymers takes more time than a column about butter. In the case of cheap, pay attention to quality and what is and is not included, such as correction rounds and the right to publish texts in your own name. Always ask for examples and a trial period, because this often involves long-term subscriptions.
- Customization. Determining the price can already increase the price when many things have to be determined first. A unique approach in a competitive market, for example, really takes time. Pay attention if you get an indication or a quote. Is the number of correction rounds well defined? How is a tough correction round (half rewriting) prevented or solved?
- Invoicing per hour. This is nice for a copywriter who wants to focus primarily on writing. It is important that the copywriter keeps a clear eye on the target group, objectives and key messages, as well as the number of words and estimated hours. As a customer, ask for a number of examples with explanations and the number of hours to be able to estimate for yourself how this works out for you. Name a number of hours in which the copywriter stops and first gives an update. Also ask for interim updates.
- Price per word. Cheaper writers who mainly write SEO texts or SME texts often work with a price per word. That often leaves little room for real correction rounds that also check the content.
Cheap or expensive?
Price and quality are closely linked. Of course a writer can also deliver in a few hours less. But unless the writer has no further pressure and still makes the hours, this has consequences for your quality. Fewer checks, reads just a little less pleasantly or a moderate substantiation with facts. In addition, a copywriter prefers to work for a customer who wants quality. That makes the work more fun and challenging.
The three motivators
In short, there are only three reasons why someone does something: money, prestige and pleasure. These are also the considerations that an agency or copywriter makes when you make a request as a new client. Can I make good sales with this? Is this good as a reference? Do I like doing this? If it is three times no, then you will also be told no as a client. An unknown webshop for boring products that requires SEO technical product descriptions will therefore find it difficult to find a cheap and good copywriter. A charity from the region can actually buy cheaper texts by mentioning and praising the writer. I am happy to write text for a whiskey brand free of charge.
The ideal situation
Ultimately, you want a long-term working relationship that works well for both parties. The external party knows the client well and knows that invoices are paid on time, the client can count on good texts and support according to planning. The share of the principal of the entire turnover of the copywriter or agency should not become too large. On the one hand, this makes the agency vulnerable, and on the other hand, working for multiple clients is important for variety and inspiration.
Six tips for better content creation
In practice, anything can go wrong when creating content.
These five practical tips ensure better content creation:
- Outlines. Say all expectations in advance. Because only afterwards involving a colleague in a new text takes time and therefore money. Certainly with longer texts (800+ words) it is more convenient to first work out the target group, objective and key messages and get everyone's agreement. That makes the story clear before it is written. For a white paper you can also determine the chapters, with the underlying messages and sources for input.
- Involve everyone. The customer journey affects different departments. Therefore involve all of them in your content marketing. For example, the account manager will consider thought leadership to be important, the customer service employee wants to fully explain the product to customers in advance, and the administration department is curious about exactly what agreements there are with new suppliers.
- Calendar tool. Quite a few emails are sent back and forth about availability for (telephone) interviews. That is why it is useful if the copywriter has a tool with which the customer can immediately record appointments for consultations or interviews. See our own agenda tool for customers here.
- Freelance pool. But few companies hire a copywriter. As a company, if you prefer not to make fixed agreements, then you are not sure whether your freelancer is available. Consider a content marketing agency with a pool of multiple writers for flexibility. You can also link people internally to a freelancer based on background and click.
- Version management. This includes keeping track of and finding changes, being able to see who has adjusted what and the underlying mail exchange. That helps you to stick to the red line and a possible follow-up: why did we remove this piece? Can we reuse that? Google Drive offers standard options for this.
- Match rights. Legal aspects are often a 'hassle', so that they are often not fully addressed. Check the terms and conditions of your copywriter and verify these situations in advance:
- Can you already use content written by an external copywriter for payment?
- Can you also use this content for other purposes? Like a website text that you later use for your brochure?
- Are you allowed to publish the content under your own name? Or do you have to use a general company title such as 'editors'?
5. What kind of content do you need?
Content differs, and with it the required input, processes and objectives:
|Content type||Target||Briefing writer||Process|
|SEO blog on external site||Keyword link building via external sites that connect to your own site. Often via SEO or influencer platforms straight away.||Desired keyword and quality. Any input.||After tuning assignment, text is written and published. Check for do-follow links.|
|SEO blog on own site||Score in Google by keyword. Take the reader to the next step in the customer journey||Desired keyword, entry, target group and tone.||Writer google information for blog. Correction round for publication.|
|Blog or landing page on your own site||Qualitative blog for branding and conversion. Take the reader to the next step in the customer journey.||Approach, target group, tone, input||Coordinate approach, input in writing or by telephone, correction rounds, content promotion after publication.|
|Longread or white paper||Thought leadership and newsletter subscriptions. Take the reader to the next step in the customer journey.||Approach, target group, tone, input, outlines||Coordinate approach to outlines. Determine input. Correction laps. Content promotion after publication.|
Unfortunately, SEO (search engine optimization (read more about SEO here) at many companies still equal to poor quality, because they want to keep costs low. The emphasis is on SEO ratings (Domain authority & page authority, trust flow & citation flow), spam score and relevance. But Google see rather that you put the reader first: informative, in-depth and also optimized to be properly indexed by Google. Remember: if bad texts work well for Google, the question is how long it will last. Good texts always work for your customers, the only question is how you bring them to their attention.
5.1 SEO influencers and content platforms: texts on external sites in bulk
As an advertiser, you now have many options for an SEO blog on an external site. You can opt for special content and SEO influencer platforms that connect your brand with various publishers. You create a campaign with briefing, target group, budget and wishes. This is based on criteria offered to publishers with one or more websites and who can respond with an offer or pitch. You choose what suits you best: sites with good SEO ratings or blogs with reach in your target group. Options range from links in existing articles, posting of delivered articles, writing new articles, product reviews and advertorials. (Read here about branded content and the differences with content marketing and native advertising).
These are the largest platforms in the Netherlands now: Link pizza, Hulc, BlogBrains, ALLthewayUP, Join.Marketing and Juulr.
5.2 The ghostwriter
Sometimes as a B2B advertiser you choose one ghostwriter: someone who sharply writes down your story that is published under your own name. Bloeise does this for Emerce among others. This immediately delivers large reach and supports with brand awareness, thought leadership and branding. In addition, there are often all kinds of conversion options for creating leads. The ideal method for engaging a ghostwriter is as follows:
- Preparation. In preparation, the ghostwriter receives an idea for the content with the most important key messages via e-mail. With this, the ghostwriter prepares a number of interview questions.
- Telephone conversation. The interview is more efficient to do by telephone. If the ghostwriter records the conversation, he or she must report this according to the AVG. An interview varies from 20 minutes for an existing working relationship to 45 to 60 minutes for a new collaboration.
- First version. The ghostwriter writes a first version and submits it to the editors. After all, the content must match the readers' target group.
- Profile. In the meantime, as an advertiser you provide a bio with profile photo and social links to the editor for the profile under which the article is placed.
- Second version. After one or more correction rounds with the editors, you as a customer get to see the content (finally). Check all the facts, let all the people involved look at this and collect your feedback.
- Publication. The editors give a final look at the new version and then publish on the website under your profile and company name. You can then actively promote this yourself via social, and depending on your agreements, also publish on your own site and promote it through your own channels.
6. The content coordinator: this is how you organize things
Someone in your company ensures that the website is adjusted, news is sent out, nice messages are posted on social media and that content is created. That is the content coordinator, who is responsible for the content strategy, content planning, content production and content promotion. So this can be one content marketer but in practice this is often an all-round marketing employee. This content coordinator person takes care of:
- A continuous stream of input for new content. Thought from the customer journey through regular consultation with the people under whose name the articles appear. You can also make arrangements with your writer to make the proposals. You can also do a content audit: see which content you can reuse.
- Inform people internally. About new blogs that they can push on their own social media, about interviews that are needed and about the results of all these efforts.
- Collect feedback. Rarely is only one person about the content. You do not want all feedback in different emails, WhatsApp messages or phone calls to the writer. Because how should they choose from this if it is conflicting feedback? Or unclear? Collect the feedback and bring it as a whole. Don't you get any feedback from that one busy-busy-busy colleague? Indicate what happens if that person does not respond (publication) or escalate it so that priorities are discussed.
- Publish content. Put the blog SEO-technically good on the site with images, meta-description, internal links, devise the tweet and Facebook post, ask colleagues to share it, continue in the newsletter and possibly refer to it on the website. All according to a fixed publication schedule: the content planning.
- Evaluate in effect, product and process. What went well and what could be better. Has it helped with your goals? Did it look good? How did the process go and how would you like to see it? The purpose of evaluating is not to generate paperwork, but to identify the areas for improvement.
6.1 Publishing content - checklist
Quite a few things can go wrong when putting content live. Therefore make a checklist and just follow it faithfully as a content coordinator:
- Has the content been paid? Without payment you usually do not have the right to use the written texts. Out of courtesy, writers do not make that difficult, but with an initial assignment or a possible short-term working relationship, this can certainly become a point.
- SEO. If necessary, process the desired keywords in the content: title, slug, headers (H1, H2 and H3), alt image and file name image, tags and categories (only those you actually use), meta-description, text. Also provide a non-competitive authority link (such as Wikipedia) and an internal link. Read our 10-point SEO checklist here.
- Enrich the text. Of course you place a header photo with a blog. But you can also find a suitable video on YouTube (good for the time on page), a matching infographic, pull quotes and more images (with alt-image). Do you have a visual designer at home? Let them choose the main image, that really makes a positive difference.
- On whos name. If you place the content by name, ensure that you have a suitable author profile with photo and social links. This person wants prior to know when his or her content is posted.
- Fetch as Google. Do you also post the content online as a guest blog, on WordPress or Medium? First place your content on your own site, and use the function fetch as Google so Google knows: your website was the first and all organic traffic has to go there. This function now works as follows: go to Google Search Console and paste the URL at the top of the search bar. Follow the instructions to have the blog indexed immediately.
7. Content promotion
Content costs money, so of course you want to get maximum results there. That starts with reaching as many people as possible from your target group. You can promote content in a number of ways:
|You want the content to score in Google.||
|You want to bring the content to your attention through your existing reach.||
|You want to bring the content to the attention of your target group.||
8. From content to conversion - six tips
With the above action points you ensure more reach and branding. But in the end the chimney should just smoke: you also want more conversion. Use the following six conversion tips:
- Call-to-action (CTA). This is the follow-up action in your content that takes the reader to the next step in his customer journey. This must be clear without unnecessary distraction from banners or links that are not for business. In addition, it must also appeal to the reader and promise something. A CTA can be: a product page, a product comparison, a review, a download, newsletter registration, contact form or telephone number. If the CTA leads to other content, there must also be a new CTA there that can take the reader further.
- Optimize your CTA. Place this several times through your content, not just at the bottom because not everyone reads to the end. There are various tools that you can use to measure how your target audience experiences your website content, such as Hotjar for example.
- Investigate the coherence. A customer usually has contact on several points before he or she makes a purchase. This can be via different channels and content. With Google Analytics you can create these insights: pages viewed before and below, influence of channels such as social media and SEA, the path across different channels to the measured conversions.
- Remarketing. If you bet on paid media, Facebook has the Facebook pixel and uses Google remarketing. This allows you to bring visitors to a specific page, such as a product page, back to your site via bannering on other sites. Indeed, those red shoes from Zalando that were no longer in your size. So make sure that you can unsubscribe easily and quickly. That is because of your annoying reviews.
- Ask for a telephone number. An email address is typically requested in exchange for a download. You can also ask for a telephone number (optional) and explain that when you enter the telephone number you will call after. Every given telephone number comes from someone who wants to talk to you.
- Pop up. Most pop ups are just annoying. But you can also take a smart approach: don't let the pop-up appear penetratingly on screen, for example in an empty area next to the text. Consider the time on the page (go for above average) and the amount of text that has been read. If someone is halfway through a 2500-word long-term reading, then the interest will certainly be stimulated. The pop up can be used for chat or a CTA such as a download. Here you can read how you can organize that smartly (and for free) with Mail lunch.
The content that you are reading now also has to deliver something. That is why you also have the option to receive this reference material for content marketing in a PDF (as a newsletter reader) and you will find our commercial offer below.
9. Introduction offer
Getting started with content marketing and looking for a content creation agency? Bloeise offers quality texts with a team of specialized copywriters who go for quality and impact. Try our introductory offer for € 250 and experience what quality content does for your company.
+ Interview about your company, objectives, strategy and the role of content.
+ Interview by one of our freelance copywriters who optimally fits your company.
+ High-quality article a 800 words, including research, keyword research and two correction rounds.
Introductory price: € 250 excl. VAT
|With this offer you get to know our blog service: monthly or weekly blog texts. I would be happy to explain our options to you in a telephone conversation. After purchasing a first blog article you will receive a customized offer.
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