Michael O'Neill

The Content Marketing Weekly features the latest industry must-reads and informative commentary from experts and analysts around the web. This week’s edition discusses robots, design flaws and several ways to enrich internal content marketing ventures.

Lead the Charge to Use Data in Every Stage of Your Design Process

Data. Data. Data. It’s on the minds of every content marketer, and if it isn’t, we’ll need to have a separate chat.

Data has broken into design studios, shining a light on how to optimize graphics production workflows from start to finish. Just as web copy is now dictated by analytics on the front end, infographics, visual embeds and other design-heavy assets are increasingly beholden to data’s Holy Grail.

In this article on Marketing Land, Conversion Scientist Brian Massey compares the traditional design process to the enhanced, data-rich model that marketers should follow.

The optimal framework would be:

Via marketingland.com

By user-testing at every stage of the design workflow, from initial planning to final launch, marketers can more accurately estimate potential ROI and curate a productive campaign that relies less on intuition and more on hard facts. Learn more on how to lead with data.

4 Easy-to-Implement Tactics to Increase Your Newsletter Subscriptions

Via quicksprout.com

Email marketing may seem like an outdated tactic, yet it has time and again proven to be one of the most successful and profitable channels to build leads and generate ROI. At the core of email marketing is the company newsletter, typically a branded compilation of information, messaging and industry insights that readers would find useful (kinda like this one!).

When considering that every dollar spent on email marketing returns $44 on average, marketers have little excuse as to why they aren’t putting more spend toward newsletters.

Neil Patel demonstrates on Quick Sprout how to quickly boost your number of newsletter subscriptions, and to be honest, his recommendations are quite simple:

  1. Determine your highest-converting landing pages and funnel existing traffic to them.
    • By including more CTAs and backlinks to your top content, you’ll capture more information via form fills, which is then cycled into your newsletter outreach efforts.
  2. Level-up your content upgrades.
    • Create custom lead magnets for top-performing content, which incentivizes readers to fill out a form to access bonus material they’re already interested in.
  3. Add exclusive content to your site.
    • Everyone wants the best, and everyone wants to fit in. By granting access to certain content only to users who join an “exclusive” club, you can encourage readers to hand over contact information, while they benefit from a larger resource center of high-value content to consume.
  4. Include more form fills on your Home and About Us pages.
    • A lot of traffic lands on these pages, yet many sites aren’t optimized for any sort of conversion at this point. For your purposes, all you need is a few pieces of contact info, so implement more CTAs.

With all of the information gathered from these efforts, you now have a sizable increase of email addresses to incorporate into your next newsletter campaign. Uncover the full details here.

Content Intelligence: Will AI-powered Content Marketing be a Gamechanger?

Depending on your outlook of the future, artificial intelligence could mean life-ending or life-affirming changes to our personal and professional worlds. I personally am looking forward to never having to wait 45 minutes for a pizza delivery – 10 minutes tops, or I’m out.

MarTech Advisor illustrates how AI and humans can work together in hybrid production/strategy roles to craft content that hits the mark every time. As explained in the article, Forbes and the Associated Press have already published machine-generated content, but by combining the predictive insights of algorithms with the natural creative brain power of mere mortals, we arrive at a new content marketing atmosphere.

Here’s what AI-led content creation could look like:

Via martechadvisor.com

Check out the rest of this post for even more futuristic visions from industry leaders.

5 Ways Your Own Employees Can Boost Your Marketing Content

You’d be surprised just how critical employee engagement can be to your marketing campaigns. That’s exactly what Zendesk’s Director of Marketing Monica Norton outlines in this MarketingProfs piece.

By creating an organizational program that incentivizes employees who promote your content, you can increase organic reach and bring in once-dormant marketing resources all for free. In essence, every employee becomes a brand ambassador, which has the potential to:

  • Build trust in the marketplace.
  • Amplify messaging.
  • Increase data capture and metrics tracking.
  • Prompt social sales.
  • Drive revenue.

Here’s a quick explainer from bestselling author Jay Baer on why employee culture is just as important as marketing execution when producing and distributing content:

To dive into the nuances of leveraging the full value of your employees, click here.

That’s all, folks. See you next Friday.