Archive for May, 2016

Marketers it’s time for some spring cleaning on social media

Wednesday, May 18th, 2016

SM spring cleaningWe are in the midst of a crisis and no I’m not talking about the economy or politics, I’m referring to a social media engagement crisis.

According to research and consulting firm Forrester, per-follower interaction rates on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Google Plus have drastically fallen in the last year. The only social media platform that showed growth in engagement was Facebook, but Forrester attributes this to paid advertisements on posts.

What’s odd is that followers and numbers of posts have actually skyrocketed in the past year. Forrester recently conducted a study of how the top 50 global brands market use social media platforms. The study included 11.8 million user interactions on 2,489 posts made by 249 brand profiles.

The research found that the top brands on average have 18.1 million Facebook followers, which is double what it was in 2014. In addition, the average number of Instagram followers reached just over 1 million—five times higher than last year. Lastly, follower counts on Twitter and Google Plus have almost doubled.

Forrester also shows that marketers are posting more than ever. The top 50 brands post 18.3 times a week on Twitter and 6.5 times per week on Facebook (on average), which is more than 2014. On Instagram, brands post on average four times per week—a 50 percent increase over last year.

So what is going on? Followers and posts have risen and yet engagement has dropped.

This lack of engagement indicates the challenge of cutting through the noise – more low quality, poorly targeted content is not the answer. With all these social media platforms engagement starts, appropriately enough, with engaging content. Marketers need to put in the extra effort to create content that will resonate with audiences. Moreover, it’s important to carefully adapt your content to be appropriate for each social media channel.

It’s vitally important for a brand to interact and engage with its audience. Why have thousands of followers if they’re not interacting with you? If you don’t have great content in your posts, people won’t engage and isn’t that what’s important?

So what do we at McKenzie Worldwide suggest? For starters, try introducing guest contributors – experts and luminaries with a real point of view. Ask probing questions to get people to respond, engage and comment on your posts. Make each post interesting and about something timely that will get people talking. Focus on the quality of the content first and foremost and engagement will happen. It’s all about building a connected community and a positive culture.

Is it time for some “spring cleaning” to clean up your social media programs? Give us a call to learn more about how we can help you boost engagement with your audiences.

Don’t forget the strategy when it comes to your Content Marketing program

Monday, May 16th, 2016

e-Spirit logoOver the past year I’ve seen quite a bit of coverage devoted to Content Marketing. Many people I’ve spoken with and articles that I’ve read highlight the importance of having a content distribution machine in place to deliver content to the masses. However, the reality is that while many companies talk a good game, most don’t have a content strategy in place and many don’t follow up on the plans they do implement.

According to research conducted by the Content Marketing Institute, 55 percent of B2B marketers say their organization is unclear on what content marketing success or effectiveness looks like. The same report indicates that only 44 percent of B2B marketers meet daily or weekly to discuss the progress of their content marketing program. The bottom line is that while many companies continue to crank out content to share with their customers and prospects, many don’t have a plan in place designed to ensure success.

One of the companies we work with, e-Spirit, just recently had an article published in CMSWire that our team wrote and placed in the publication that focuses on the CMSWire logoimportance of having a content marketing strategy in place. In addition, the article highlights the importance of being able to deliver the right content to the right person at the right time.

Does your company have a defined content marketing strategy in place? More importantly, does your company regularly check to see if it’s following that strategy?

Strike when the opportunity is hot

Friday, May 13th, 2016

One of the more important aspects of public relations is being able to uncover opportunities and being agile enough to ensure the best outcome for your clients. When an opportunity to help a client presents itself, you need to move fast. But it’s not just about turning around something quickly, it’s also about knowing the company’s audience, understanding market issues, and presenting a coherent discussion. Being smart, agile and quick can lead to great results.

For example, when a busy reporter was about to decline a time-sensitive story idea about the Portland CyberPatriot Camp recently, we seized the opportunity to offer up a guest column instead and drove hard to get it turned around in a day. Since many of us at McKenzie Worldwide are former journalists, we know what makes a good article or guest column. We quickly identified one of the leading companies in cyber security (Galois, Inc.), discussed the opportunity with the company’s marketing team and quickly wrote up the guest column for the CEO.

We ended up developing a guest column on behalf of Galois that focused on hot trends in the cyber security space and also promoted the Portland CyberPatriot Camp (an event that McKenzie Worldwide is sponsoring) which was published in the Portland Business Journal within two days. We also promoted The Galois Foundation’s sponsorship of this cyber security camp for high school students while highlighting their focus on supporting Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education.

It was a win-win for Galois and provided great exposure for the event.

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Content marketing: Not just another fad, but the path to real results

Wednesday, May 4th, 2016

C.M. photo 3Are you sick of tracking marketing fads? Direct marketing morphed into digital marketing, which is giving way to content marketing. Very often there is plenty of substance behind the fad – which is why it became popular in the first place – but only if you do it right.

Another challenge to throw into the mix is the issue of shifting technologies and customer preferences. Over time, traditional digital marketing – essentially non-stop email blasts – has devolved into a less-than-mediocre form of marketing, due in part to the rise of the Internet and social media over the past 10 years or so.

Anyone can easily slap some ridiculous YouTube video up on Facebook and capture many opt-in leads that are then spammed into submission. However, these low-quality, high-volume approaches rarely lead to the kind of results digital marketers are hoping for in their programs.

Looking for a better way, many folks are jumping on the content marketing bandwagon. Unfortunately, effective content marketing takes much more work than many marketers anticipate.  Simply putting up a few random posts on a blog isn’t content marketing. Content marketing, just like digital marketing before it, can be effective when it’s backed up by smart strategies and appropriate levels of investment.

Of course we’ve all heard the phrase, “content is king.” Without question, this statement is true on many levels. The right content tailored to the right audience is critically important, but many people seem to have missed the memo. You can’t simply write a white paper or freshen up a data sheet and call it content marketing. That’s not quality and is unlikely to generate the kind of long-term engagement and loyalty that you’re looking for in your company’s customer relationships.

Content marketing is all about delivering information that your customers and prospects find useful. If they see you as a resource they are going to be much more inclined to turn to your company when the time comes to make a purchase. Effective content marketing and strategies cut through the noise and the clutter, offering useful information and real value to readers.

Now, of late, people are asking if content marketing is just another fad. After all, isn’t there enough superfluous amount of “junk” on the Web already?  Indeed, there is. But there’s never enough useful, valuable information that people need.

At McKenzie Worldwide, we’re here to add quality content back onto the Web and into your company.

Wouldn’t you much rather have your company benefit from earned media attention from respected publications and quality self-publishing streams resulting from smart strategy and the dedicated work it takes to build trust in your brand? False followers and a bunch of random likes due to another click bait blog post are not going to get you there.  Let’s talk.


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