Coming to Better Understand ‘Content PR’ In the Digital Age

By | content marketing, public relations | No Comments

Defining the subtle differences between advertising, marketing and public relations can be a difficult endeavor, even for the country’s most successful ad agencies. While answers certainly exist as to what barely separates and drives the booming communicative fields, most communications professionals have always felt that—on the flip side of things—content marketing and digital PR were held at opposite ends of the spectrum by way of huge distinguishing factors.

In reality, however, the overlap is prominent, to say the least. In fact, so joined at the hip are the two practices that—sooner, rather than later—you’re bound to hear the term “Content PR” being tossed around down at the office. Needless to say, whether it’s content marketing or digital PR that you consider your God-given forte, there’s bound to be a heavy mixture of both advertorial tactics.

As an improved spinoff of traditional marketing, content marketing is focused primarily on the creation and distribution of meaningful content which, when consumed, both engages and acquires a target audience. Interestingly enough, PR strives to do something very similar: build rapport and trust with a predetermined demographic. In time, as the aforementioned specialties continue to evolve, the dividing line of separation between content marketing and PR promises to become thin.

Distribution Is Just as Important as Production

Does the term “churnalism” ring a bell? You might’ve heard it mentioned a few times during an introductory journalism course in college or while working an entry-level gig at any one of America’s many ad agencies. “Churnalism” refers to a writing style that’s centered on quantity, rather than quality.

When done properly, content marketing needn’t be an activity in speedwriting; moreover, an exercise that aims to examine the questions and concerns of consumers—a very PR-driven concentration, in its own right—and address them through published content. Sure, production is important for content marketing to take effect, but it means absolutely nothing without sound distribution techniques.

This is where PR comes into play for marketing agencies. Content marketers and their respective agencies tend to allocate the majority of their publication efforts towards channels that they rightfully own and manage. Owned media helps with long-term growth, search-engine rank and becoming an industry-specific thought leader, but there’s more out there to be discovered.

On the other hand, PR spotlights the importance of earned media. Of the matter, says, “Key elements of marketing are to attract an even greater audience, lead pool, and increasing brand awareness. While content marketing beefs up one’s owned-media outlets, PR bolsters earned media and likely garners new eyes for a brand.”

Brand Reputation Is Strengthened With Every Link Hit

Blogs are important and most content marketers already know it. They have to know it, seeing as how they spend countless hours crafting engaging posts for both blog subscribers and those who might stumble upon their site through random Google searches or social posts. With that in mind, however, blogs aren’t necessarily the most important thing for content marketers and the agencies at which they work.

Let’s say, for example, that the CEO of your tech startup has a new app update that he or she would like to announce to the world. Obviously, a well-written blog post should be crafted to help get the word out. When shared through a company’s numerous social platforms, people are going to learn not only what said update is and how it can help them, but how they can get their hands on it.

That being said, blogs aren’t always the perfect solution for agencies. The problem with blog posts lies in the fact that there’s a certain self-serving stigma that surrounds them. Now, imagine if The New York Times or The Wall Street Journal wrote a piece on your startup’s newest app update. Not only would more people know about it, but they’d be more inclined to believe that such an update could really help them. If this sounds like a worthwhile pursuit, go nab your closest PR representative and get to work on gaining coverage.

Content Marketers Must Think About the Bigger Picture

Writing purists will argue that the world’s greatest authors wrote, write or will write for writing’s sake. This sort of utilitarian approach is fine, but usually there’s a greater good that’s being accomplished. In the case of the aforementioned authors, making a living, providing for loved ones or presenting an important message all might take the proverbial cake as a main motivating factor.

As far as agencies are concerned, content marketing is no different. At its core is a heavy editorial skill set, but there’s so much more that’s being accomplished through the strategic writing process that’s often forgotten. Content marketing agencies must remember that they’re not writing to meet deadlines or to fulfill a quota; they’re working to better serve digital audiences healthy doses of incredible stories, industry-shaping news and groundbreaking ideas.

More often than not, PR helps content marketers fine-tune the emphasis being placed on the public. In the process, fresh insights, new angles and creative perspectives are formed and implemented.

Truthfully, it shouldn’t matter if it’s a basic blog composition or a bit for The Huffington Post, if a target group is kept in mind right from the very start, the end result will be worthy of everyone’s time and energy. With a similar goal driving both content marketing and PR, it won’t be long until “content PR” becomes a mainstay of any communications team.

Fusion 360 - Coming to Understand Content PR (Fusion 360 Agency)

Vine: Building a Brand In 6 Seconds or Less

By | Social Media, video production | No Comments

In just a couple of years, Dom Hofmann, Rus Yusupov and Colin Kroll—the original creators of Vine—have proven that being long-winded isn’t necessary to get a message across. Seriously, it only takes six seconds or less. Still not convinced? As of April of this year, Vine—a short-form, video-sharing smartphone app— had managed to attract over 40 million registered users.

With upwards of 12 million Vine videos being uploaded to Twitter and other social platforms each and every day, it’s hard to argue against the strange, yet successful amateur video production outlet. Sure, it’s fun to watch miniature videos of house cats making fools of themselves or young, unsuspecting fathers taking a wiffle ball or two to the groin, but is there any real video production or social media marketing value with Vine?

Seeing as how more than half a trillion Vine loops run annually, the answer to the aforementioned question is a positive one. With that in mind, however, there are certainly better, more approachable methods for making Vine an effective tool for brand building. The following are a few of the more prominent strategies:

Product Demos

Nowadays, it seems that most people prefer online shopping over having to actually get up and go to a nearby store. While true, it’s much harder to purchase an item without the luxury of having it right in front of you. Simply put, digital buyers want as much information as possible made available to them so that they can shop smart.

Vine videos, coupled with a bit of video production magic, do an excellent job of highlighting a product’s most defining characteristics. When viewed in action, people—without physically being present—are much more willing to invest their hard-earned cash in whatever you’re selling.

Keep Things Light and Entertaining

Nearly 23 percent of 13- to 17-year-olds are active on Vine from a mobile device. Truthfully, few social outlets rival Vine for targeting Millennials through video production. There’s a reason for that: entertainment. Honestly, there aren’t many young people who consciously care about product reviews or brand history.

Instead, they prefer to enjoy social media while laughing and that’s exactly what Vine does for them. Regardless of the industry that you represent or how funny you may or may not be, make certain to provide your followers with Vines that’ll keep them coming back for more. That being said, there’s a fine line between what’s pleasantly hysterical and the compromising of brand values.

Company Culture on Full-Display

In past decades, it’s been near impossible for companies to develop meaningful relationships with their customers. Through social media—in this case, Vine—that’s no longer the situation. If you’ve seen MTV’s hit show “Catfish,” then you’re more than aware of such a reality. Being in the same room is no longer necessary for genuine dialogue to develop. For example, consider creating a handful of videos that focus on the subtle ins and outs of your business’ culture.

Though it’s unlikely that potential clients be drawn to you because of your insane ping pong skills or ability to beatbox by the water cooler, when it’s time for a buying decision to be made, they’re more likely to remember your social and video production presence than the minute specifics of your competitors’ product or service rates.

Social Engagement

Engagement is the real beauty behind social media. Think about the last time that you were at a retail store and the sales clerk hit you up for your email address to add you to the store’s “system.” Unbeknownst to most, this is a pathetic attempt at B2C interaction. Sure, if you toss your personal email address their way, you’ll probably receive a couple of promotional coupons.

But before you’ve even made the decision to open a promotional email, you’ll have already registered their account as spam. Ya see, when social media—more specifically, social media with a video production twist—is made a mainstay of a marketing, consumers aren’t interrupted with information; they voluntarily pursue it and are met with more than they’d originally expected.

Maybe you’re experienced with social media; maybe you’re not. Perhaps you’ve dabbled in a few beginner video production projects; on the other hand, you might not even known how to work a basic camera phone. In spite of your experience—or lack thereof, for that matter—to survive as a digital marketer in today’s fast-paced environment, adaptation is key. Vine, along with a host of other social channels, isn’t so much of an option as it is a necessity.

8 Web Design Flaws That Promise to Drive Away Visitors

By | web development | No Comments

Having your own little corner of the Internet in today’s day and age is all the rage. Whether it be for personal or entrepreneurial reasons, maintaining an eye-popping, up-to-date website is essential for not only attracting digital audiences, but for keeping them there once they’ve arrived.

That being said, if you’ve spent any amount of time either building a website or working as a web design specialist, you know that attracting audiences is a task easier said that done. If you’re intent on constructing a site worthy of widespread approval and traffic on the World Wide Web, there are a handful of mindless mistakes that should be avoided at all costs:

1) Poor Site Navigation

Few things are as frustrating for Web enthusiasts as poor site navigability. Customers shouldn’t ever feel confused or annoyed at what a website offers them. Far too often do web design specialists—even those with years of experience—provide visual elements which are difficult to interpret or scatter main navigation links all over a homepage. If such feelings arise because a user can’t quickly find what’s being searched, it’s unlikely that he or she will ever return.

2) Far Too Many Advertisements

This is more of an issue for bloggers and digital publication sites, but it’s still something that shouldn’t occur. While your site might rely on ad revenue to stay afloat or pull a profit, there’s no reason to bombard visitors with unending advertisements, many of which are difficult to exit out of. Never allow for ads to be the first thing that a user sees or for them to take up more room than your actual content does. Furthermore, and of extreme importance, pop-up ads can’t cover up the very information your guests are hoping to consume. With ads, the more discreet the better.

3) Poorly Organized Content Structure

More often than not, when conversion and retention rates suffer, poor content structure is somehow involved. In fact, it’s estimated that upwards of 50 percent of digital sales are lost when potential customers can’t easily find what they’re looking for online. Keep things simple, especially with your site’s content layout. If information can be presented on a single page, allow it to happen. Truthfully, this sort of problem presents a quick fix. Bold headings, introductions and highlighted keywords do more for enhancing content structure than just about anything else.

4) Content Inconsistency

Ever thought that you’d found the perfect site for what was needed only to realize that the site’s content was last updated four or five years ago? Though potentially accurate, inconsistent publishing is a huge deterrent for Internet users. If writer’s block has you at a loss for words, consider adding a blog to your personal web domain. Blogs are great for updating visitors with the latest information, news and interest-specific trends. Once the proper balance between interactivity, design and content production, has been discovered, the clicks come pouring in.

5) Forced Website Registration

These days, it seems like personal information is given out on a daily basis. Whether it be the creation of a new social profile or a rewards card at the grocery store, everyone wants access to your email address. It’s for that exact reason that people are hesitant to hand over personal information. If possible, allow visitors to register for site access without being hassled. When unavoidable, at least give users a taste of what they’re about to sign up for.

6) Overbearing Video & Audio

People love options. For experts of web design, this is a pivotal part of any design strategy. Speaking of the power to choose, reports, “Most people value their ability to choose what content to absorb. Having video or audio that loads automatically can potentially drive visitors away.” Audio and video are both excellent for keeping visitors on your site. With that in mind, however, when automatically loaded and implemented, dissatisfaction often ensues.

7) Visual Crowdedness

Visual discomfort doesn’t only come about when images and videos overload a page; unusual fonts, abrasive colors and obvious typos all play their respective roles in giving any visitor an unpleasant experience. Ideally, if the budget is there, a web design professional should be contacted for additional help. Seeing as how color palette, typeface and site tone can have a tremendous impact on customer conversion rates, it’s key that the best that the industry has to offer be consulted.

8) Dull Design

The entire purpose of a website is to feed valuable messages to earnest seekers of knowledge. If a site is dull, that end goal is hindered in its efficiency. At the end of the day, memorable moments are what bring people back to a site, time and time again. Yes, it’s true that minimalistic websites can be both beautiful and engaging, but when built improperly, they’re more an eyesore than anything else. Even worse, when tragically coupled with weak content, it’s literally impossible that a web domain succeed.

Whatever your specific design needs might be, heavy traffic is going to make the necessary time and effort required for building an incredible website worth the hassle. Needless to say, when the aforementioned design catastrophes are consciously bypassed, websites flourish.

Fusion 360 - 8 Apparent Web Design Flaws (Fusion 360 Web Development)

4 Thriving SEO Content Types Which Guarantee Driven Traffic

By | SEO | No Comments

There’s no need to talk with an SEO specialist about the importance of quality content and the strategic sharing of thereof. They already know all about it and, more than likely, have the software in place to help them figure out not only when a specific bit of information should be published, but where it should be made available for the digital masses to consume.

Oftentimes, the tricky part comes from determining exactly what kind of content should be produced. Think about it. From hysterical lists and memes to informative product reviews and e-books, the type of material that’s created can very much influence the level of rapport that’s built with Google or Bing. Needless to say, certain content types promise to perform better than others:

1) Blog Posts

Truthfully, it almost seems like the term “blogging” has become a buzzword in recent years. While you might have already grown tired of maintaining your own personal blog, it’s unlikely that the editorial practice go away any time soon. As traditional journalism rides off into the proverbial sunset, typical people—with little to no marketing or SEO need—have taken over and are now gaining the attention of millions of eager eyes each and every day.

Currently, blogs come in as the fifth most trusted source for digital information amongst active Web users. You read that correctly, right? Good, because this is where you—the SEO or content marketing guru—come into play. Business blogging isn’t like traditional blogging; it’s not an option. To more fully establish yourself as an industry leader with colleagues, potential clients and search engines, blogging is key.

In fact, studies have show that those who regularly blog are 13 times more likely to produce a positive ROI for either themselves or their respective clients. On average, companies that blog receive 97 percent more links to their sites than those who bypass the booming SEO practice. Don’t be on the outside looking in. The only thing that an active blog costs you is time; clearly, it’s well worth the investment.

2) Infographics

Though blog posts are splendid and can contain a wide variety of valuable data for site visitors to enjoy, generally speaking, they are lengthy and can’t be read in a handful of minutes. With audiences constantly being bombarded with digital distractions, you and your client need to provide content that’s both helpful and succinct.

It’s for this reason that, in the past few years, infographics—presenting complex data or information in a visual, easy-to-read way—have burst onto the Internet marketing scene and have become a secret weapon of sorts for SEO marketers. Even the science behind the eye-popping tool indicates to leaders of the SEO industry that infographics are here to stay.

For example, 50 percent of the human brain is involved in visual processing. Furthermore, research has found that colorful visuals increase piece readability by upwards of 80 percent. With that in mind, it’s no surprise that people remember over 80 percent of what they both see and do. Infographics play off of that innate tendency and, as a result, are liked and shared through social media up to three times more often than generic content.

While it’s preferred that a graphic designer within your professional network take on the responsibility of infographic production, the Internet does offer a number of do-it-yourself programs for those with smaller budgets.

3) Videos

As the desired attention spans of consumers become more and more difficult to attract and maintain, the importance of video skyrockets. Whatever your video centers on, it’s imperative that the communicated message be powerful in a memorable way. When crafted ingeniously, the SEO value of video is off the charts.

Does your client offer a groundbreaking new product or service? Consider a tutorial video to bring to light the brilliance of the money-making entity you represent. Seriously, 64 percent of people are more likely to invest in a product after viewing a video about it.

That being said, if things are being done at the ad agency or marketing firm level, implement a creative video or two to give on office tour or to show the lighter side of how things work down at the office. Internet users that voluntarily watch videos on a website—even if they’re of a commercial nature—spend 88 percent more time on said site.

Shockingly, using video as a means of SEO promotion, content marketing and social prowess is a relatively uncharted endeavor. Only 24 percent of brands use online videos to market themselves. Yes, it’s somewhat of a trying endeavor, but the payout is huge.

4) Podcasts

A few years back, podcasts were all the rage. Wrongfully, in today’s day and age, it seems that marketers and SEO experts have practically abandoned the homegrown media outlet altogether. Podcasts aren’t only for sportscasters and long-winded politicians, they’re for anyone with a message worth promoting.

In reality, podcasts are a great form of content. Seeing as how iTunes houses well over 250,000 podcasts, the medium is clearly still relevant. Not only do podcasts allow for the mobile ingestion of intelligence, but they’re easy to make, entirely free and allow producers to share a message with a broad audience. It’s that very level of accessibility that has over 46 million Americans over the age of 12 downloading them on a monthly basis.

As a helpful tip, when used for marketing purposes, it’s a good idea to combine one of the aforementioned content genres with your podcast to build intrigue and generate discussion. Additionally, publish the podcast’s transcript on your website to add even more SEO value to the effort.

Whatever level of SEO or digital marketing experience you have, knowledge is best obtained through experience. If you have yet to experiment with a certain content type, give it a whirl. When all is said and done, the product- or service-pushing magic you work on the World Wide Web—with an SEO twist, of course—will be heavily linked to the different kinds of content you manufacture and present for all to see.

The 5 Persuasive Pillars of Storytelling as a Digital Content Marketer

By | content marketing | No Comments

Brand storytelling isn’t a new endeavor. In reality, it’s something that traditional marketers have been doing for years. What’s relatively new, however, are the fields of social media and content marketing. Joined at the hip, both industries—falling under the larger canopy of digital advertising—have made brand storytelling an all-encompassing practice.

With so many content marketing specialists competing for social space, great stories—not just good ones—are what earn valuable clicks and build search engine rapport. If you and your marketing firm or agency are struggling to build audience intrigue, it’s never a bad idea to get back to the basics.

No, not what was taught in your Marketing 101 course back in college, but the actual basics of storytelling and writing. Unbeknownst to most, by so doing, engaging brand stories become the norm and less the occasional occurrence.

1) Audiences Want the Truth

If you’re like most Americans, the thought of dealing with a car salesman is enough to make you cringe. It’s not that the people who push new or used cars are bad people, it’s just that everything that’s presented is assumed to be a lie or stretched truth. Nobody likes to feel like they’re being sold, and brand stories—regardless of medium—must keep consumers comfortable.

In all of life’s situations, honesty is the best policy; content marketing is no different. Sure, “stories” are being crafted, but make certain that they’re rooted in the reality of your company’s history, products or industry.

Furthermore, keep things consistent. Once brand stories begin to drift from what audiences come to associate with a business, confusion sets in. Truthfully, confusion, more than just about anything, is the top brand-killing force, at least from a content marketing standpoint.

2) Develop Meaningful Characters

Every great story comes with a team of lovable characters. Just as you and your family love rooting for Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games, so too can any money-making entity win over the approval of potential clients. Take Progressive’s Flo, for example. While not upheld by a team of supporting characters, Flo’s success is found in her relatable and quirky nature.

That being said, it’s not imperative that a fictitious character be created for widespread emotional appeal to come about. Buyer personas, real-life clients and employees are also able to present their respective points of view in an advertorial manner.

Speaking of the end goal of brand characters, says Susan Gunelius of Forbes, “The important thing is to create characters that enable your audience to become emotionally connected to them to such an extent that the audience wants to follow their character arcs.”

3) Make Your Brand’s Personality Shine Through

The appeal of social media and content marketing is found in its entertainment value. As opposed to advertisers approaching customers with pamphlets, sales pitches and a series of “incredible limited time offers,” target audiences are allowed to ingest information on their own terms.

Because of this, it’s key that you infuse any and all stories with a dash of brand personality to keep people coming back for more, time and time again. That is, after all, what’s supposed to separate you from the masses, right? Without a writer’s true colors on full display, readers will most assuredly bore quickly and revert to industry competitors who can more fully captivate them.

4) Build Intrigue Through Suspense

Whether it be a blog post or a podcast, do your best to make content a type of reoccurring page turner. Social media can be great for dangling the proverbial carrot in front of the ever-engaged eyes of your brand’s biggest followers. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and even email lists are awesome for building intrigue with audiences.

Also, perpetual marketing—in addition to building story suspense—provides content marketing gurus with the ideal opportunity to promote their content through offline and mobile marketing measures.

5) Make Certain to Include a Beginning, Middle and End

Middle schoolers all over the country know that any good story comes fully equipped with a beginning, middle and end. If the aforementioned model is good enough for the world’s greatest works of fiction, it’ll get the job done for your company’s content marketing needs.

In the beginning, a story’s keynote players are established. Next, the middle portion of a brand story brings with it arguably the most important phase: character conflict. Here, a featured dilemma is presented so that a final resolution can take place. Lastly, at the end of a brand story, you guessed it, an audience learns how difficulty has been overcome. The idea is that, as a character’s story arc is developed, public participants enjoy the story and bring others onboard. Such is the exponential power of sound storytelling.

Always remember that content marketing allows consumers to interact with your brand when and where they’d like. With multiple stories which cling to a central brand promise and a number of social outlets to tap into for involvement, brand fans soon translate into hard ROI for companies to appreciate.


Cheat Sheet: Proper Image Sizing When Posting On Social Media

By | marketing | No Comments

In today’s day and age, social media involvement, at least from a marketing standpoint for agencies, is a must. Truthfully, whether it be here in Utah or elsewhere, people don’t only love social media because of its widespread networking capabilities, but because of the image-sharing power of the interactive platform.

Whether it be Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ or Instagram, using images is of paramount importance when it comes to attracting shares, likes, favorites and retweets. That being said, oftentimes it can be difficult to know which image sizes work best for specific social outlets. Ever been confused? Well, here’s a helpful cheat sheet to make the matter a bit easier:

4 SEO Secrets All Businesses Should Keep Hidden In Their Respective Vaults

By | SEO | No Comments

Believe it or not, the world of search engine optimization (SEO) is an exciting one. The industry is constantly changing with new discoveries and techniques being made and implemented every week. Truthfully, with so much going on, it can be easy to get lost in the haze of information that’s being produced at such a rapid rate.

For years, SEO specialists have placed a great deal of emphasis on link building. While still important, the best, most accomplished SEO agencies guide their respective clients to digital success through much more than a just a handful of strategically embedded links. For them, there a few tricks of the trade which keep their reputations growing in a positive direction, helping to bring in bigger and better clients with each passing year:

1) Maintain a Strict Editorial Calendar

Think about it: when you’re searching for information on Google, Bing or any other reputable search engine, you want only the best that the Internet has to offer. Content that’s fresh, up-to-date and accurate is the stuff that’s being pursued. Well, if you’re to join the the powerhouses of your specific industry on Google’s first page, you’ll need to produce a similar content type. Though hard work, the reward is well worth the editorial headache.

2)  Relationships Are Always More Important Than Links

With the passage of time, it seems that public relations has managed to infiltrate most subsections of digital marketing and SEO is no different. As previously mentioned, link building is vital for SEO success; however, quality links come from valuable relationships, not mind-numbing public relations pitches. As industry-influencers develop professional friendships with your brand, the invaluable links will come.

3) Make Long-Tail Search a Real Focus

Long gone are the days when people conducted simple keyword searches to find desired information. In today’s day and age, search engines are much more advanced and can give people exactly what they want in just one search. For this reason, long-tail search is currently of the utmost importance. Says of the matter, “Search engine experiences are becoming increasingly personalized. That’s why it’s important for businesses to focus on long-tail and location-based keywords—so that audiences can find your company based on the exact value and service that you provide.”

4) Focus On the Customers, Not Only On the Keywords

Nobody is claiming that keyword research isn’t important. That being said, there are other endeavors which, in their own right, are worthy of a bit of research. As is the case with nearly everything entrepreneurial, the customer is always a prime focus. Instead of spending countless hours and hundreds of dollars on SEO software, devote time to composing helpful blog posts, how-to articles and industry-specific tutorials for customers to learn and grow. They want immediate answers and your website needs to become the exact place for them to obtain them.

Stay tuned: what we’ve presently come to associate with SEO today, more than likely, in the coming years, will no longer be relevant. With that in mind, however, the aforementioned tips promise to make SEO-related successes a regularly occurring feature for years to come when put into practice.

2 Reasons for Why Videos Generate More Marketing Leads Than Anything Else

By | video production | No Comments

These days, the importance of video production simply can’t be understated. Regardless of industry, people prefer to view videos about information that interests them, as opposed to consuming written text. Through video production, things as mundane as employee biographies, emails and testimonials can quickly turn into client-led conversations.

Basically, when video production is combined with both social media and proper website design and development, potential customers begin to pay more attention. Why? Well, as a direct byproduct of any and all published content videos, people have a better idea of who a brand really is and what it stands for. In a roundabout way, it’s a direct reflection of where a customer’s hard-earned dollars might be going.

If you’re still not convinced, the following two reasons should help to better solidify the importance of video production in today’s digital age of advertising, marketing and public relations:

1) People Love Good Storytelling

When was the last time that a friend or family member told you about a particular person of interest? The individual in question could’ve been a stranger, friend, coworker or someone of romantic involvement. Whatever the case, as the listener in such a scenario, it can be difficult to hear little more than description. Adjectives don’t properly paint the proverbial picture of a person’s character and all is quickly forgotten.

However, when a story or interaction is presented—the more shocking, the better—every last detail is remembered. Truthfully, depending on the entertainment value of what’s been shared, you might actually take things a step further and tell that same story to another person with whom you converse on a regular basis. This, when all is said and done, is the innate value of storytelling. Video production does more than just force-feed information; it tells a story, while also adding to the experience through visual enhancement.

2) The Social Impact of Video Production

Once brand videos have been created, it’s time to share; more specifically, it’s time to share through social media. Be it Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest, social media—in recent years—has greatly facilitated the digital marketing game. The real genius behind social media is the exponential potential behind every post, tweet or pin. Says Anne Jones, a blogger with, “Once you’ve made a video and showed your authentic self, the great part is it’s not a one-shot deal. Content, if done right, can work for you around the clock.”

For example, once a video were to go live on YouTube or any other similar site, it will be there infinitely. Those who engage with the video can go back and view it whenever they like. If all goes well and a video production project is shared, retweeted or repinned at an alarming, uncontrollable rate, it’s said that said video has gone “liquid.” At that point, the digital marketing takes care of itself and all that’s left for you to do is sit back and watch.

In the this, the digital age of communication, people want to consume as much information as possible in very little time. What was once a battle between brand journalists has now become one for graphic designers and video production specialists. If you and your business are looking to get involved, there’s nothing quite as effective as Internet videos to make the pushing of a certain product or service a complete and total success.

4 Basic SEO Fundamentals Which Trounce Link Building In Importance

By | SEO | No Comments

As a sound digital presence becomes more important for businesses hoping to extend their respective market reaches, the value of search engine optimization (SEO) continues to grow. That being said, few are the people who actually have a thorough grasp on what SEO is and what it can do for a brand hoping to find more marketplace success. For far too many, SEO is little more than an unethical link building practice which, due to recent algorithm updates at Google, has become increasingly more difficult.

While the debate as to whether link building is a viable SEO strategy will most assuredly continue onward, what’s for certain is the importance using SEO in its entirety and not only as a means of building rapport with the world’s largest search engines. The following are four of the most vital SEO strategies which, contrary to what some may opine, are crucial for entrepreneurial success out on the World Wide Web:

1) Helpful, Informative Content

Truthfully, half of the issue that traditional marketers have with SEO is found in the content that many inexperienced SEO agencies produce for their clients. Needless to say, complete and total filth—from a content standpoint, at least—is never going to earn algorithmic approval.

If you or a company that you represent have a website, it needs to contain nothing but authoritative, up-to-date content for visitors. All the basics of a site’s written and visual content must be covered, without exception: homepage, about page and contact page. Furthermore, it’s become increasingly important that a blog be actively kept to better establish digital credibility. By so doing, rank is bound to increase.

2) Proper Site Navigability

There’s nothing more frustrating than discovering a promising website, only to get confused by the site’s interface and navigability. Remember: if your site is confusing and easy to get lost in, visitors will simply take to Google to find another one that isn’t.

Believe it or not, Google actually rewards sites that help users find what they’re looking for in a matter of two or three clicks. If handling the SEO needs of your brand or those of another, optimize your navigation so that anything can quickly be located. Use descriptive core headings with drop-down page lists and search bars to lead guests to their digital destinations as soon as possible.

3) A Robust Social Presence

These days it seems that all businesses have a Facebook page and a Twitter profile. Realistically, at least from a true social perspective, that means little. For starters, if you do have a Facebook page and Twitter profile, be active on them. Profiles do little good if fresh content and meaningful interactions aren’t being made on a daily basis.

Social media can’t be a passive thing. Take action and claim your business’ profile on as many social platforms as possible. While Facebook and Twitter are great, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Instagram work wonders for brands looking to build relationships with industry influencers and potential clients. The more impressive your social thumbprint, the more favorably google will look upon your company.

4) Mobile Optimization

There’s a reason that mobile optimization is last on this list; it’s the most important of the bunch. Google’s recent “Mobilegeddon” gave many SEO agencies the gentle nudge they needed to get the mobile ball rolling. Presently, there’s no excuse for not having a mobile-compatible site.

If possible, optimize your site for both speed and responsiveness from a mobile device. This will allow for easy access and use, regardless of the device being used to access a webpage. Basically, without mobile optimization, a site is destined to struggle in the ways of search visibility. If not changed, a site’s PageRank will most assuredly plummet.

Depending on the SEO specialist with whom you speak, you’ll hear a wide variety of opinions on link building. Regardless of your thoughts and feelings on the matter, the aforementioned SEO-driven tactics are both tried and proven; if implemented, SEO success is eminent.

Breaking Free From YouTube: The Other 3 Best Places to Publish Content Videos

By | video production | No Comments

Regardless of whether you’re a video production specialist with years of experience or merely a few months of practice, it’s important that all digital content be uploaded to a place where maximum exposure can occur. Most of the time, this sort of desire leads people to publish their videos through YouTube.

While there’s certainly little wrong with YouTube, the World Wide Web does present a number of other options for those looking to branch out. The following are three of the best places to share video content—outside of YouTube—which promise to bring success:

1) Veoh

Veoh, much like YouTube or any other video hosting site, is an Internet television station of sorts which focuses on two different types of user content: independent productions and user-generated videos. With a Veoh account, a user can upload videos of any length. Once uploaded, they can be pulled from Veoh and easily posted on an individual’s personal website or blog.

What separates Veoh from it’s competitors is its extensive community. From fashion and sports to cooking tutorials and video game reviews, there’s a community for everyone to rate, comment and view interest-specific videos.

2) Metacafe

Though YouTube is clearly the king of jaw-dropping user statistics, Metacafe is more than able to hold its own. Each month, the site lays claim to over 40 million unique visitors. Like most video hosting websites, Metacafe offers users a wide variety of video categories. However, what’s most attractive is the site’s special ranking algorithm which, in the words of, “ensures that the uploaded videos are of the highest quality.”

Even more impressive is the fact that Metacafe refuses to host duplicate videos. Lastly, if you’re videos do at least moderately well, Metacafe is willing to fork over a bit of cash. Once 20,000 views are reached, Metacafe will gladly pay $5 for every 1,000 views. Though not much, it’s certainly an added incentive.

3) Vimeo

Vimeo, more than just about any other video hosting site, has managed to rival YouTube in the ways of traffic. Though the view counts are nothing short of impressive, what’s most important for the founders of Vimeo is that true video production quality be put on full display for all of the site’s visitors to enjoy.

Whereas YouTube is loaded with hundreds of dead and duplicate videos, Vimeo allows for only professional-grade visual projects to be published. Free video creation and hosting is allowed on Vimeo; however, if your specific video production projects involve professional filming and editing, a premium account might be more alluring.

Whatever your specific video production needs might be, it’s never a bad idea to think outside the box and explore other publishing mediums. Yes, YouTube is clearly the best video publishing platform that the Internet has to offer. That being said, with other up-and-coming sites, it’s necessary to explore additional outlets. Who knows? In only a matter of time, YouTube may become nothing more than a thing of the past.