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Content Marketing Planning: How to Build Your Editorial Calendar

This may be of some interest.

Building an Editorial Calendar

Building an Editorial Calendar

I can’t believe I got fired from the calendar factory. All I did was take a day off!

Opening today’s post up with a bit of levity felt fitting, because calendars can cause much anxiety. They bring to mind deadlines, meticulous organization, and time crunches, which are often oppressive realities for marketers with a million things on their plates.

But the truth is that you’re likely to encounter much more dread if you don’t house your content planning within a documented and strategic editorial calendar for blogging. Building out a set schedule (with a bit of flexibility) ultimately makes your life easier because it provides a guiding light, and ensures your content strategy remains cohesive and oriented around your objectives.

In other words, editorial calendars are no joke. Here’s how you can construct one that seriously drives your company’s blog (or any other content initiative) forward. 

Fortify Your Editorial Calendar in Five Steps

Whether you’ve already got a content calendar, which you hope to refine and improve, or you’re starting from scratch, these five steps will put you on track.

Step 1: Crystallize Your Objectives

The biggest issue with many content plans is that they’re aimless and wayward. When you’re figuring things out on the fly, it can be difficult to tie everything back to the same goals and desired outcomes. So the first step is to zoom out and nail down what you’re trying to achieve with the content in question. For instance, if your blog is designed to generate leads with specific audiences, are you tethering each piece on your calendar back to this outcome in some way? 

Placing objectives front-and-center is a key benefit of documenting your content strategy, and making them the underpinning of your planning will help ensure everything you publish has a purpose. 

via GIPHY

Step 2: Chart Your Pillars and Timely Focuses

With objectives clearly defined, you can formulate content pillars that will serve as the cornerstones of your editorial calendar. Also known as topic clusters, these are the general categories that all of your content will nest under. Pillars are determined by the intersection of what you want to be known for, and where demand exists. They should be informed by SEO research around keywords and queries, hitting the sweet spot between search volume, expertise, and buying intent.

Here on the TopRank Marketing Blog, our pillars are aligned with our agency’s core services — content marketing, SEO, influencer marketing — and so pretty much everything we create for the blog approaches these topics from various angles for people who are interested in learning about them and looking for insight.

Don’t view content pillars as restricting; there are a wide range of ways you can address almost any topic, either directly or tangentially. Organizing your calendar around them will help ensure you stay focused, and relevant to your target audience. In addition to identifying a topical mix, you can start to define your content types — how-tos, thought leadership, influencer collaborations, conversion-driven pieces, etc. These can be aligned with various stages of the buying cycle, and mapped back to the key objectives established in Step 1.

At this point, it’s also smart to map out industry events or seasonal milestones that you’ll want to create content around. 

[bctt tweet=”Don’t view content pillars as restricting; there are a wide range of ways you can address almost any topic, either directly or tangentially. @NickNelsonMN #ContentMarketing #ContentPlanning” username=”toprank”]

Step 3: Coordinate with Your Broader Strategy

This is a vital consideration that is all too frequently overlooked. Whatever channel you’re scheduling content for — be it a blog, email, social, etc. — think about ways you can coordinate with other departments or disciplines in the organization. For example, does your sales team experience higher volumes of inquiries at certain times of year? Or are they attending a trade show next month that you could support with content? Maybe one of your executives will be speaking at a conference, and you want to queue up some thought leadership around the subject of their talk in the days leading up.

A strong editorial calendar should reflect the company holistically. In this sense, it can be helpful to make your calendar visible to everyone and not just the folks on your team. 

[bctt tweet=”A strong editorial calendar should reflect the company holistically. @NickNelsonMN #ContentMarketing #ContentPlanning ” username=”toprank”]

Step 4: Plot Your Cadence and Schedule Out Your Content

How often will you create content? And why? We all know it’s valuable to publish regularly, because this is how you build an invested and trusting audience, but “regularly” can mean different things under different circumstances. Is it daily? Three times a week? Multiple times per day? This decision shouldn’t driven by guesswork, but by data. 

Although it’s a little older now, HubSpot has a helpful post on determining how often companies should blog based on variables like company size and B2B vs. B2C. But you’ll also want to dig into your own visitor behavior analytics and draw conclusions on what your audience wants. Test different cadences and compare the impacts. As a general rule, more publishing equals more traffic, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’ll be worth your while to create new content each day. 

As Alfred Lua of Buffer writes: “I would recommend experimenting and finding a suitable editorial cadence based on your content goals and the amount of time you have. There is no one right editorial cadence. HubSpot publishes several articles a day while Backlinko publishes less than once a month.” (As a side note, we highlighted Backlinko’s quality-over-quantity approach here earlier this year.)

Having made this decision, you can start filling out the calendar appropriately, using your content pillars and organizational directives as guides. Plan as far out as you’re comfortable (at least one month, but forecasting three or more months is even better). Make sure you’re building in enough topical variety to keep things fresh and diverse. Once you get your schedule documented, it becomes easy to spot gaps or overloads. 

Step 5: Leave Room for Change

Note that you don’t want to completely fill out your editorial calendar. As we mentioned earlier, it’s important to leave some flexibility so you can nimbly address timely matters as they arise and account for the (expected) unexpected. Contently editor-in-chief Jordan Teicher proposes a 75/25 rule, wherein one out of every four slots in your calendar is left blank. 

“In my years managing the site, I’m certain of one thing: s*** happens,” Teicher writes. “People miss deadlines. Sources don’t respond in time. The design team can’t find the right image. My day gets stuffed with meetings, which prevents me from editing a draft. A flexible content calendar is about more than just coming up with ideas for the current news cycle. It’s also about realistic expectations.”

Smart Practices for Getting the Most Out of Your Editorial Calendar

The five steps above will help you solidify your calendar. Here are a few additional tips to help make the process smoother and more effective.

  • Hold group brainstorming sessions. Usually, the toughest thing about building out a content calendar is coming up with enough concepts to fill it in. I recommend setting up a time where a bunch of your creatives come together to load up the pipeline with ideas (run these ideas past your content pillars and SEO research to assess strategic viability). Make sure to incorporate voices from various departments. 
  • Slice up and repurpose. It’s always valuable to get the most mileage possible out of your content. If you’ve got a big, meaty blog post planned on a certain subject, why not divvy it up into three parts and run it as a series? If you’re looking for a reliable performer next month, why not take your most successful piece from last month and flip it into an infographic, or conceive a follow-up post that expands on it? Repurposing is a great way to get the most out of your content leftovers.
  • Lean on the right tools. For some content teams, a spreadsheet or even a Word doc can be sufficient for organizing your editorial calendar. In other cases, this initiative can be run through your project management software. But for high-volume teams with many elements to track and account for, it might be helpful to go with a dedicated content-centric solution. There are plenty of them out there, including Contently, DivvyHQ, Kapost, CoSchedule, and more.
  • Create comprehensive coverage. What this looks like can vary in different scenarios. It might mean approaching your topical pillars with best-answer content that addresses every subtopic your customers are interested in learning about (especially those queries carrying any level of purchase intent). If you’re in a crowded niche, it might mean gobbling up every bit of white space your competitors are missing. If your content is oriented toward B2B buyers, it might mean creating content for every role on distributed buying committees, and speaking to each stage of a lengthy purchase cycle

Right on Schedule

If you feel apprehensive about building an editorial calendar from scratch, you’re not alone. It can feel intimidating to schedule out so far in advance, and to consistently manage and maintain this resource. But I assure you, once you get into the groove, your life will be much easier and your results will improve. 

Following the steps and recommendations above will help you stay on target and derive maximum value from your efforts.

Want to add further efficiency and foresight to your strategy? Learn more about getting ahead with your content planning

The post Content Marketing Planning: How to Build Your Editorial Calendar appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

Thank you for reading.

Advanced Hack: How to Improve Your SEO in Less Than 30 Minutes

This may be of some interest.

digital marketing

I’ve been testing a new SEO hack and it works no matter how old or how new your site is.

Heck, you can have barely any links, and I’ve found it to work as well.

Best of all, unlike most SEO changes, it doesn’t take months or years to see results from this… you can literally see results in less than 30 minutes.

And here’s what’s crazy: I had my team crawl 10,000 sites to see how many people are leveraging this SEO technique and it was only 17.

In other words, your competition doesn’t know about this yet!

So what is this hack that I speak of?

Google’s ever-changing search results

Not only is Google changing its algorithm on a regular basis, but they also test out new design elements.

For example, if you search for “food near me”, you’ll not only see a list of restaurants but you also see their ratings.

food near me

And if you look up a person, Google may show you a picture of that person and a quick overview.

elon musk

Over the years, Google has adapted its search results to give you the best experience. For example, if you search “2+2” Google will show you the answer of “4” so you don’t have to click through and head over to a webpage.

2 plus 2

But you already know this.

Now, what’s new that no one is really using are FAQ-rich results and Answer Cards.

Here’s what I mean… if you search “digital marketing” you’ll see that I rank on Google. But my listing doesn’t look like most people’s…

digital marketing

As you can see from the image above, Google has pulled FAQ rich results from my site.

And best of all, I was able to pull it off in less than 30 minutes. That’s how quickly Google picked it up and adjusted their SERP listing.

Literally all within 30 minutes.

And you can do the same thing through Answer Cards anytime you have pages related to question and answers.

qa example

So how can you do this?

Picking the right markup

Before we get this going with your site, you have to pick the right schema markup.

FAQpage schema is used when you offer a Frequently Asked Question page or have a product page that contains frequently asked questions about the product itself. This will let you be eligible for a collapsible menu under your SERP with the question, that when clicked on, reveals the answer.

faq rich result

It can also let you be eligible for FAQ Action that is shown on Google Assistant. This can potentially help get you noticed by people using voice search to find out an answer!

faq action

Q&A schema is used when people are contributing different types of answers and can vote for which answer they think is the best. This will provide the rich result cads under your SERP and shows all the answers, with the top answer highlighted.

qa rich result

After making sure you understand what these are used for, Google also has additional guidelines on when you can and can’t use these schema’s for:

Google’s guidelines

Google has a list of FAQpage schema guidelines.

Only use FAQPage if your page has a list of questions with answers. If your page has a single question and users can submit alternative answers, use QAPage instead. Here are some examples:

Valid use cases:

  • An FAQ page was written by the site itself with no way for users to submit alternative answers
  • A product support page that lists FAQs with no way for users to submit alternative answers 

Invalid use cases:

  • A forum page where users can submit answers to a single question
  • A product support page where users can submit answers to a single question
  • A product page where users can submit multiple questions and answers on a single page
  • Don’t use FAQPagefor advertising purposes
  • Make sure each Question includes the entire text of the question and make sure each answer includes the entire text of the answer. The entire question text and answer text may be displayed.
  • Question and answer content may not be displayed as a rich result if it contains any of the following types of content: obscene, profane, sexually explicit, graphically violent, promotion of dangerous or illegal activities, or hateful or harassing language.
  • All FAQcontent must be visible to the user on the source page.

And here are the guidelines for Q&A schema:

Only use the QAPage markup if your page has information in a question and answer format, which is one question followed by its answers.

Users must be able to submit answers to the question. Don’t use QAPage markup for content that has only one answer for a given question with no way for users to add alternative answers; instead, use FAQPage. Here are some examples:

Valid use cases:

  • A forum page where users can submit answers to a single question
  • A product support page where users can submit answers to a single question 

Invalid use cases:

  • An FAQ page was written by the site itself with no way for users to submit alternative answers
  • A product page where users can submit multiple questions and answers on a single page
  • A how-to guide that answers a question
  • A blog post that answers a question
  • An essay that answers a question
  • Don’t apply QAPagemarkup to all pages on a site or forum if not all the content is eligible. For example, a forum may have lots of questions posted, which are individually eligible for the markup. However, if the forum also has pages that are not questions, those pages are not eligible.
  • Don’t use QAPagemarkup for FAQ pages or pages where there are multiple questions per page. QAPagemarkup is for pages where the focus of the page is a single question and its answers.
  • Don’t use QAPagemarkup for advertising purposes.
  • Make sure each Questionincludes the entire text of the question and make sure each Answer includes the entire text of the answer.
  • Answermarkup is for answers to the question, not for comments on the question or comments on other answers. Don’t mark up non-answer comments as an answer.
  • Question and answer content may not be displayed as a rich result if it contains any of the following types of content: obscene, profane, sexually explicit, graphically violent, promotion of dangerous or illegal activities, or hateful or harassing language.

If your content meets these guidelines, the next step is to figure out how to implement the schema onto your website and which type to use.

How do I implement Schema and which to use? 

There are two ways to implement it… either through JSON-LD or Microdata.

I recommend choosing one style and sticking to it throughout your webpage, and I also recommend not using both types on the same page.

JSON-LD is what Google recommends wherever possible and Google has been in the process of adding support for markup-powered features. JSON-LD can be implemented into the header of your content and can take very little time to implement.

The other option is Microdata, which involves coding elements into your website. This can be a challenging process for some odd reason, I prefer it. Below are examples of how each work.

FAQpage Schema JSON-LD:

<html>

<head>

<title>Digital Marketing Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) – Neil Patel</title>

</head>

<body>

<script type=”application/ld+json”>

“@context”: “//schema.org”,

“@type”: “FAQPage”,

“mainEntity”: [

“@type”: “Question”,

“name”: “What is digital marketing?”,

“acceptedAnswer”:

“@type”: “Answer”,

“text”:”Digital marketing is any form of marketing products or services that involves electronic device”

]

</script>

</body>

</html>

FAQpage Schema Microdata:

<html itemscope itemtype=”//schema.org/FAQPage”>

<head>

<title>Digital Marketing Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) – Neil Patel</title>

</head>

<body>

<div itemscope itemprop=”mainEntity” itemtype=”//schema.org/Question”>

<h3 itemprop=”name”>What is digital marketing?</h3>

<div itemscope itemprop=”acceptedAnswer” itemtype=”//schema.org/Answer”>

<div itemprop=”text”>

<p>Digital marketing is any form of marketing products or services that involves electronic device.</p>

</div>

</div>

</div>

</body>

</html>

Q&A Schema JSON-LD:

“@context”: “//schema.org”,

“@type”: “QAPage”,

“mainEntity”:

“@type”: “Question”,

“name”: “Can I tie my shoe with one hand?”,

“text”: “I currently have taken a hobby to do many actions with one hand and I’m currently stuck on how to tie a shoe with one hand. Is it possible to tie my shoe with one hand?”,

“answerCount”: 2,

“upvoteCount”: 20,

“dateCreated”: “2019-07-23T21:11Z”,

“author”:

“@type”: “Person”,

“name”: “Expert at Shoes”

,

“acceptedAnswer”:

“@type”: “Answer”,

“text”: “It is possible to tie your shoe with one hand by using your teeth to hold the other lace”,

“dateCreated”: “2019-11-02T21:11Z”,

“upvoteCount”: 9000,

“url”: “//example.com/question1#acceptedAnswer”,

“author”:

“@type”: “Person”,

“name”: “AnotherShoeMan”

,

“suggestedAnswer”: [

“@type”: “Answer”,

“text”: “It is not possible to tie your shoe with one hand”,

“dateCreated”: “2019-11-02T21:11Z”,

“upvoteCount”: 2,

“url”: “//example.com/question1#suggestedAnswer1”,

“author”:

“@type”: “Person”,

“name”: “Best Shoe Man”

]

Q&A Schema Microdata:

<div itemprop=”mainEntity” itemscope itemtype=”//schema.org/Question”>

<h2 itemprop=”name”>Can I tie my shoe with one hand?</h2>

<div itemprop=”upvoteCount”>20</div>

<div itemprop=”text”>I currently have taken a hobby to do many actions with one hand and I’m currently stuck on how to tie a shoe with one hand. Is it possible to tie my shoe with one hand?</div>

<div>asked <time itemprop=”dateCreated” datetime=”2019-07-23T21:11Z”>July 23’19 at 21:11</time></div>

<div itemprop=”author” itemscope itemtype=”//schema.org/Person”><span

itemprop=”name”>Expert at Shoes</span></div>

<div>

<div><span itemprop=”answerCount”>2</span> answers</div>

<div><span itemprop=”upvoteCount”>20</span> votes</div>

<div itemprop=”acceptedAnswer” itemscope itemtype=”//schema.org/Answer”>

<div itemprop=”upvoteCount”>9000</div>

<div itemprop=”text”>

It is possible to tie your shoe with one hand by using your teeth to hold the other lace.

</div>

<a itemprop=”url” href=”//example.com/question1#acceptedAnswer”>Answer Link</a>

<div>answered <time itemprop=”dateCreated” datetime=”2019-11-02T22:01Z”>Nov 2 ’19 at 22:01</time></div>

<div itemprop=”author” itemscope itemtype=”//schema.org/Person”><span itemprop=”name”>AnotherShoeMan</span></div>

</div>

<div itemprop=”suggestedAnswer” itemscope itemtype=”//schema.org/Answer”>

<div itemprop=”upvoteCount”>2</div>

<div itemprop=”text”>

It is not possible to tie your shoe with one hand

</div>

<a itemprop=”url” href=”//example.com/question1#suggestedAnswer1″>Answer Link</a>

<div>answered <time itemprop=”dateCreated”datetime=”2019-11-02T21:11Z”>Nov 2 ’19 at 21:11</time></div>

<div itemprop=”author” itemscope itemtype=”//schema.org/Person”><span

itemprop=”name”>Best Shoe Man</span></div>

</div>

</div>

</div>

When you are implementing it on your website, feel free and just use the templates above and modify them with your content.

If you are unsure if your code is correctly implemented or not, use Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool and you can add your code snippet or the page that you implemented the schema on and it will tell you if you did it right or wrong.

Plus it will give you feedback on if there are any errors or issues with your code.

google structure data testing

You can also try Google’s Rich Result Tester. This will give you a brief look at how your structured data will look like in the results!

google rich snippet

Getting results in under 30 minutes

Once you make the changes to any page that you think is a good fit, you’ll want to log into Google Search Console and enter the URL of the page you modified in the top search bar.

add url

You’ll then want to have Google crawl that page so they can index the results. All you have to do is click “request indexing”.

request indexing

And typically within 10 minutes, you’ll notice it kick in and when you perform a Google search you’ll see your updated listing.

Now the key to making this work is to do this with pages and terms that already rank on page 1. That’s where I’ve seen the biggest improvement.

Will Schema get me to rank for People Also Ask and Featured Snippets?

Will this help with People Also Ask and Featured Snippets? So far, there has been no correlation between schema markup and People Also Ask or Featured Snippets and you do not need them to be featured in them.

Optimizing your content for this will not hurt you though and can potentially improve your chances to be on here.

Google has been testing out how they can show these types of Q&A, FAQ, and How-To results and looking at structured data to help understand them.

It’s better to be early to the game and help Google understand your pages, as well as possibly participating in any of Google’s experiments.

snippet

Will this get me on voice search?

With more and more people using mobile devices to find answers to questions, this is a very relevant question!

Especially considering that over half of the searches on Google will be from voice search in the near future.

Answers from voice search get most of their answers from featured snippets.

And adding structured data on your website increases the chances of getting you into featured snippets, which increases the chance of you getting featured on voice search.

Conclusion

This simple hack can potentially increase the visibility of your brand and help improve the authority of your website. It’s a simple solution that can take a single day to implement across your main question, product, or FAQ page.

I’ve been using it heavily for the last week or so and as long as I pick keywords that I already rank on page 1 for, I am seeing great results.

And as I mentioned above, when my team analyzed 10,000 sites we only found 17 to be using FAQ and QA schema. In other words, less than 1% of the sites are using this, which means you if you take advantage now, you’ll have the leg up on your competition.

So what do you think about this tactic? Are you going to use it?

The post Advanced Hack: How to Improve Your SEO in Less Than 30 Minutes appeared first on Neil Patel.

Thank you for reading.

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Rocket Spanish Review

If you’re planning to learn Spanish so that you can communicate with the locals during a short holiday, there are several ‘learn Spanish’ courses online that you could try. However, most of them are not that good.

Very often the phrases taught are either outdated or too formal. You’ll sound ridiculous to the locals who do not speak that way at all. It can be embarrassing. To save yourself the humiliation, it’s best to get a Spanish course that has been proven to help you learn Spanish well.

One of the best Spanish courses online is Rocket Spanish. In fact, if you Googled the term “learn Spanish”, it’s inevitable to come across many sites that mention Rocket Spanish.

This is a brand that has a wide variety of different language courses designed to help beginners learn languages and reach an intermediate level. Once you get to intermediate, you may consider advancing further, depending on your interest in the language.

Let’s take a closer look and see why Rocket Spanish is so popular and effective…


The Good Points:

1) The course is laid out in a very systematic way to guide the beginner through the different modules so that they can improve gradually. By following this system, they’ll develop a strong foundation in Spanish and it will help them advance much faster as they learn the more advanced phrases and sentence structures.

2) There are several modules in Rocket Spanish that are designed to make you proficient in the language. Here’s a brief breakdown of what you’ll find inside:

* Interactive audio lessons
* Language and Culture Lessons
* The “Survival Kit”
* “My Advanced Learning”
* Flash Cards
* Quizzes
* Forum

There’s even a forum where you can communicate with people who have purchased this product. It’s a good place to share tips and more.

3) This is a bestselling course online with many satisfied customers. It’s proven to work. So, there’s no need to worry it not being up to standard.

4) There is a voice recognition software within the course. So, when you’re learning Spanish, you can test yourself with this software to see if a native speaker would understand what you’re saying.

You do not want to be in a situation where you think you’re speaking Spanish, but everyone else is wondering what language you’re speaking.

5) There are 31 audio lessons that you have lifetime access to. The phrases and words you learn will allow you to have a proper conversation in different settings. You’ll not be learning pointless phrases like, “This is a pretty flower”, etc. No no… you’ll learn lines that teach you how to order meals or a drink, how to get directions, etc. Useful and very relevant lines.

6) There’s a lot of convenience here. You can download the audio training into your mp3 player or tablet and listen to them while you’re on the go. In other words, you can be learning Spanish while walking in the mall or driving to work, etc. This will really accelerate your learning.

7) This course is covered by a 60-day refund policy. This is enough time to learn and speak Spanish with the program. If despite your best efforts you see no improvement (highly unlikely), you can always get your money back. Despite the refund policy, this product has a very low refund rate because it is that good.

8) Considering the amount of value, you’re getting, the pricing is ridiculously low. You’ll save so much more money with Rocket Spanish instead of hiring a tutor or going for classes.


The Bad Points:

1) Learning any language will take you time and effort. While Rocket Spanish is an excellent training course, you’ll still need to study it and practice speaking it. Consistency and patience is required. You can’t master the language in 3 days.

If you’re looking for miracles, this program is not it. If you’re willing to work a little and master Spanish, this guide is perfect for you.

2) This is an online course. You’ll need a computer with a working internet connection to purchase and access it.


Should You Get It?

All the Rocket languages products are great. This is an established brand that’s popular all around the world. If you want to learn Spanish quickly and easily, Rocket Spanish will really help you.

All the audio lessons are geared towards people who want to speak the language relatively fluently. The beauty of Rocket Spanish is that you can go from not knowing a word of Spanish to holding a conversation in Spanish in 2 to 4 weeks.

Of course, to get really good, it’s best to speak to the locals and gradually improve your vocabulary and fluency. But if you’re just starting out, you can’t go wrong with Rocket Spanish.

>>> Get “Rocket Spanish” Now <<<








The Definitive Guide to Mobile Deep Linking

This may be of some interest.

mobile

The average consumer is spending five hours per day on their smartphones and this number is only going up.

We do everything on our phones these days, from shopping to browsing social media and managing our businesses.

This is why it’s more important than ever to optimize the user experience to keep people on your app for longer periods, enjoying it more, and sharing it with friends.

If you’re trying to optimize your mobile app, I’m sure you’ve already tinkered with the layout, fonts, copy, and more, but there’s one thing you probably haven’t…

Mobile deep linking.

It’s a small detail that can drastically enhance how users engage with your app but few are taking advantage of it.

That’s why I’m going to be teaching you what mobile deep linking is, why you need it, and how you can implement it yourself.

Let’s dive in.

What is mobile deep linking, anyways?

Mobile deep linking is the practice of funneling users deeper into your app through the use of a uniform resource identifier or URI for short.

This allows mobile app developers to push to a specific page within an application versus simply opening it.

Think of it as a website URL.

If you were trying to sell a product, would you want users landing on the homepage or being forwarded to a sales page found deeper in the website?

The latter, of course.

By helping users go to a certain page within an app, you’re making the customer journey easier by getting them closer to the end goal sooner.

Here’s a visual of what the process looks like:

While it might seem simple, mobile linking comes in three different forms that you need to be aware of. They include the following:

Standard deep linking

This is the straightforward deep linking that forwards a user to a specific part of the app. It’s also known as universal linking.

It only works if the customer already has the app installed.

The problem is within traditional linking is that when a user clicks a link, it won’t open the mobile app, but rather directs them to the browser version.

If someone is on a mobile device, the app version will always be more optimized and streamlined.

Here’s what happens if you search for my Instagram on Google for example with the app installed.

The results appear to be the exact same whether you have the Instagram app or not, but clicking it opens up the app seamlessly.

This is a good example of basic deep linking. 

Someone that doesn’t have the Instagram mobile application installed will be given an error or redirected to a fallback page.

Deferred deep linking

This form of deep linking works the same way as standard linking does with the exception that it will direct users without the app to the download location.

This is beneficial because it can help app developers and companies acquire more customers.

Once the app is installed, the user will be referred to where they were originally navigating.

Check out the Skip The Dishes app to see what I mean.

While a user is creating their order, they are able to download the mobile app for Android or iOS.

They are forwarded back to the exact step they were taking, except in the mobile app after downloading it.

This means that they don’t have to manually go through the entire process again to get back to where they were.

Contextual deep linking

Contextual deep linking, also known as onboarding, is commonly used for gathering information on customers to personalize the user experience of an app.

Data such demographics, how users navigate to the app, and more is recorded.

The app onboarding process can be different depending on if the user installed via the Google Play Store, the Apple Store, a Facebook campaign, or another source.

A mobile app downloaded through a Facebook Ad might look different than when it’s downloaded through a Google Display Ad, for example.

The landing page is able to be customized through what is known as a deep view in mobile app development.

Just as the deep link forwards users to a specific deeper page in the application, the deep view is the visual result they see that’s different than others.

URI schemes

Deep linking is only doable thanks to what is known as URI schemes. These schemes are similar to how a website URL can direct you to a specific page on a website.

They look something like this:

See the fetched URI? Its format is appname://path/to/location.

Custom URIs are simple to set up for developers (Often created by default) and present the opportunity to redirect users wherever you please.

The mobile customer journey and how it applies to deep linking

The mobile buyer’s journey is the individual’s steps a user takes to find, use, and share your application.

It’s similar to the regular funnel a customer goes through when purchasing a product with some small differences you need to be aware of.

Here’s how the various steps in the mobile buyer’s journey can be applied to mobile deep linking.

Discovery

The first step in the mobile customer journey is discovering your app in the first place.

While this can be achieved through strategies like content marketing and SEO, deep linking gives you a nice boost to these tactics.

Google indexes deep links from mobile apps, giving you more opportunities to rank and drive organic traffic.

Users can click the search engine listing and open the link directly through the app instead of an internet browser.

Look at this search for Google Analytics to see what I mean:

This helps businesses acquire more users and increase brand awareness versus having a single search engine listing.

Check out my video on skyrocketing mobile app organic traffic, and pair it with deep linking for mind-blowing results.

Compare

Once a user has narrowed down a few options, they’re naturally going to want to find the best app by comparing them.

They’ll look at factors such as pricing, ease of use, and features. 

Deep linking enables you to push users to the best features of your app, reviews, or customize the experience to make your application better than competitors.

By reducing the number of steps it takes to get to important functions of the app, you’re also decreasing the chance of users bouncing.

Decision

The third step in the mobile buyer’s journey is making a decision and commitment to a single app.

Having a clear value proposition and refined user experience is crucial here. 

Better yet, contextual deep linking helps you collect data to make the application as tailored as possible to your buyer’s persona. 

Marketing campaigns can also be optimized with this information to improve targeting and performance.

Retain

Once you begin acquiring more users, you need to keep them.

Standard and deferred deep linking will help navigate users back to your app when they are on search engines, social media, and other platforms. 

This keeps them using your app more often.

Data that can be collected as a result of deep links will assist you in understanding why and how they use your mobile application.

Doubling down on these is what we call Pareto’s Principle or the 80/20 rule.

This rule can be seen everywhere and defines that 80% of results come from 20% of actions.

In the case of mobile app development, you might discover that users are only engaging with a few features and others are taking up space.

You could hypothetically update the features and pages that are used the most, boosting engagement and retention.

Businesses will miss out on discovers like this if they don’t use deep links to collect information.

Why mobile deep linking matters

I know what you’re thinking.

“Why should I bother with mobile deep linking?”

Let me explain.

It improves the user experience

If you can save the user from going through multiple steps instead of one, why wouldn’t you?

That’s exactly what deep linking does, and improves UX because of it.

You’re making the life of users easier by using deep linking to get them where they want to go faster.

This gives them a better experience and impression with your app as a result.

Here’s what the difference between not using mobile deep linking and taking advantage of it looks like:

Much simpler, right?

This brings me to my next point.

It increases customer retention and engagement

Wouldn’t it be nice if every user that downloaded your app stay active all year round?

Unfortunately, that’s not how it works.

It’s been found that 55% of users will churn after the first month of use. That means nearly half of the new downloads will be lost.

Look at mobile app user retention the same way you approach a website.

It’s common for nearly half of all visitors to leave a website and not take any action.

Do you just sit there and do nothing about it? Of course not!

You implement strategies like email options through popups and exclusive content to capture those users before they leave.

This is precisely what deep linking can be used for but in the sense for a mobile app.

Once a user has visited your app, you can retarget them and use a different style of deep linking to improve their experience.

It improves the onboarding of new users

When a mobile app uses a form of deep linking like the deferred approach, you are capable of acquiring more users.

This is because as a user goes through the mobile browser version of your application, they will be given the option or automatically forwarded to the appropriate download location.

The contextual linking technique can be used to onboard new users in different ways depending on where they originally download the app from.

If you understand that users coming from a Facebook ad campaign regularly navigate to a certain product category, you can push them there automatically.

Furthermore, perhaps users from Google like to learn more about your business first before purchasing.

You can use contextual deep linking to direct those users to the page detailing your company’s history.

You can re-engage users

Once a user has used your app, you have a small window of opportunity to retarget them.

Did you know that 46% of search engine marketers believe that retargeting is the most underused form of marketing right now?

It’s a hidden gem that deep linking enhances.

If a segment of users downloaded your app, viewed product pages, and bounced, you could retarget them in advertising campaigns and use deferred linking to forward them back to the high-interest product pages.

Strengthens your marketing

Personalization is key. Contextual deep linking allows you to customize the user experience, which improves marketing results.

Take into consideration that 39% of consumers will spend more money when given a mobile coupon.

You could collect data on users via contextual deep linking to discover what product categories they enjoy the most, then offer a discount for them to align with this behavior.

Similarly, mobile deep linking has the potential to increase conversion rates.

This is because you are pushing users through the sales funnel quicker. Normally this consists of:

  1. The user lands on the homepage of your website.
  2. They navigate to a product page and add a line item to their cart.
  3. They visit the cart page to confirm their order.
  4. Finally, they pay and check out.

Mobile deep linking can effectively cut the sales funnel in half by helping customers go straight to sales pages.

Take the ticket mobile app SeatGeek as an example. They were able to increase revenue by 10.6% and app open rate by 8.8% with deep linking.

Here’s how…

Firstly, they struggled with reminding users to finish their purchases and buy tickets through the app.

They resolved this issue by using deep linked mobile ads. These target ads based on past user activity would display relevant ads in other existing apps the customer used.

SeatGeek noticed that they were getting thousands of new users per day and had to keep them.

Their team began creating ads that would serve different audiences based on previous behavior.

An example of this would be a user adding tickets to their favorite basketball team’s game to cart, but then abandoning before checking out.

When this user was on another application that supported ads, they would see an advertisement for that same basketball game.

The ads were simple in nature, using a related image, and straight forward call to action.

Boosts app discoverability

Don’t you want to get discovered by more customers?

Of course, you do!

And that’s precisely why you need to implement more deep linking in your mobile app.

Deep links are indexed on Google, giving you more opportunities to rank and drive traffic to your business.

And seeing as Google receives over four billion searches per day, you don’t want to miss out on the free exposure.

Think about how a website like mine ranks for thousands of pages, and not just the homepage.

You can achieve that same performance but for your mobile app.

Users on search engines like Google will be able to visit deeper functions and features versus landing on the welcome page.

This creates the opportunity to optimize applications for SEO via keywords, meta descriptions, and title tags, as well.

Provides analytics and insight into campaigns

Mobile deep linking allows you to refine your buyer’s persona and better understand their behavior.

This information can be used to improve the effectiveness of marketing campaigns and the overall experience of your app.

You will also be able to discover which links are being clicked the most and by whom.

Doing so creates the opportunity to double down on the best-performing links and optimizing who you target in advertising campaigns.

Deep links also shine light in which parts of your app are used the most and which aren’t.

Google offers its Firebase product to track deep linking in an easy to use platform.

You can begin using it by selecting the Android, iOS, C++, web, or Unity options.

Using Android as an example, you will need to ensure that you meet the prerequisites Google outlines in their documentation.

Firebase’s SDK automatically captures various metrics, user properties, and allows you to create custom events if you wish to track a specific action.

This data is then relayed through the Firebase dashboard which has a very familiar look and feel to other Google products.

You will feel right at home if you’ve ever used Google Analytics.

Which by the way can be connected to Firebase if you need to add events specific to your business like e-commerce purchases.

How to perform mobile deep linking

Now that you’re excited to get started using mobile deep links, here’s how to implement it yourself.

Deep linking on Android

Android devices will select one of three options when a URI is requested:

  1. It opens a preselected app with the URI.
  2. It opens the only available app that can handle the URI.
  3. The user is prompted to choose an available app.

To begin adding deep links to achieve this, you will need to navigate to the AndroidManifest.xml file of your Android mobile app.

You will then have to add the following elements to the file through an intent filter:

  • Specify the ACTION_VIEW attribute in the <action> element.
  • <data> tags which include the URI scheme, host, and path.
  • CATEGORY_DEFAULT and CATEGORY_BROWSABLE attributes to move users from a browser to your app.

Here’s an example from Android’s official documentation on deep linking of what the code will look like:

The second step is to ensure that your app can read data from the intent filter you created.

This is achieved through adding getData() and getAction() methods like so:

Deep links should not require users to log in or perform other actions to visit the desired content unless desired like in the case of promoting app downloads through deferred linking.

iOS

Adding deep links to iOS apps begins by enabling them through what is known as Associated Domains Entitlement.

That’s a fancy way to say you’re letting search engines know what app belongs to what website.

This way when a user clicks on your website, it activates the specified type of deep linking you choose.

You will then have to add an Apple App Site Association file to your website to verify it.

This association file needs to contain the following code, as you can see from Apple’s official documentation:

Similar to how Android apps have the manifest file, the app delegate file acts as the root of iOS apps.

This is why you will have to program your app delegate file to respond to deep links like Apple shows in this example:

They are specifically handled through the NSUserActivity object and activityType value of NSUserActivityTypeBrowsingWeb.

Your iOS app will be prepared to handle and accept users that navigate to it from browsers like Safari after you complete these steps.

Conclusion

Mobile deep linking is a powerful technique to improve the user experience, on-boarding, and marketing of applications.

The three types of mobile deep linking are standard, deferred, and contextual. It’s important to understand each of these to know when to use them properly.

Standard deep linking is used when customers already have an app installed. When they click on a mobile link, it will give them the option to open it in the app or automatically.

Deferred deep linking works by forwarding users to the appropriate app store to download the app if they don’t have it, then pushing them to the originally intended page.

Contextual linking is the most complicated but allows developers to collection information on users to customize the on-boarding and overall experience of the app.

Mobile deep linking can be implemented in each step of the buyer’s journey to acquire and retain users, too.

How do you use deep linking to improve mobile app performance?

The post The Definitive Guide to Mobile Deep Linking appeared first on Neil Patel.

Thank you for reading.








Text Your Ex Back Review

There’s never been a product as unique as Text Your Ex Back in the relationship guidance niche. It’s truly one of a kind and it meets a need that was never addressed before.

Created by relationship expert, Michael Fiore, Text Your Ex Back is exactly like what its name suggests. If you are brokenhearted, depressed and feel like all hope is lost because of a breakup, this system just might help you fix the relationship and get your ex back.

And here’s the best part – you can do it with just texting.

No need for long phone calls, jewelry, cards or serenading under a window. Times have changed. Everyone texts these days and it’s the most common form of communication.

The strategies in this program have proven to be very successful and thousands of people have gotten their boyfriends, girlfriends, wives, husbands… back just by sending the texts that are provided here.

You must see it in action to believe it. Skeptics have become believers after seeing how these texts worked. Let’s look at this program in greater detail.


The Good Points:

1) You’ll get mp3s, written reports, interview recordings and several other types of training material in this highly comprehensive program. Text Your Ex Back is a very unique product and the first of its kind.

The plan is detailed and yet, it’s easy to follow. Once you understand the psychology behind the texts and how they influence human emotions, you’ll truly realize just how powerful this system is.

It has helped thousands of people, and it will most probably help you too.

2) The beauty about Text Your Ex Back is that it takes guesswork out of the equation. This is a systematic plan that you need to follow to the letter. Literally. If you can do that, your chances of getting your ex back will be much higher.

The problem most people face is that they just don’t know what to do when they experience a breakup. They overreact and resort to desperate gestures of love or over-dramatic bursts of emotion. All of these work against them.

You need a calm, cool method of approach that increases your worth in the eyes of the one you broke up with. Text Your Ex Back will make your ex feel like they’re losing out by letting you go. When that happens, they’ll be much more likely to get back with you.

3) The system in Text Your Ex Back is highly effective and will help both parties. If you were the one who was dumped, you can use it. If you were the one who initiated the break up, you can still use it too. People make mistakes.

Breakups are often emotionally charged with lots of hurtful comments, cold behavior and much more. Text Your Ex Back will help you overcome all these and still help you to get back with the one you love.

4) There is a peer group that comes with this program. You’ll be able to find friends and get emotional support in the members area. Sometimes talking to others who have gone through a break up and gotten their ex back will help to prevent depression, keep you hopeful and encourage you.

5) You have 60 days to test this product out. If you can’t get your ex back by then, you’re still covered by a money-back guarantee. So, you can always ask for a refund.


The Bad Points:

1) This is an online download. You’ll need a computer to access it, but you can print it out for easy reference, if you wish.

2) Success with this program will also depend on the cause of the break up. Sometimes, when there is infidelity, physical abuse, etc. the emotional pain and scars can be so severe that the relationship can’t be salvaged.

So, Text Your Ex Back is effective, but it doesn’t have a 100% success rate. Nevertheless, you should still try it out because you’ll only know if you can get your ex back when you try.


Should You Get It?

Definitely. Texting is a very powerful strategy to get your ex back.

While they can avoid phone calls or meeting you, most people are curious by nature and will still read text messages. What’s important is that you send the right kind of texts that keep them hooked and coming back for more.

Sending long emotional soliloquy texts is NOT the way to go. You need the texts in Text Your Ex Back. They’re effective, work on people’s emotions and are based on human psychology. That’s what makes them so effective.

Quite frankly, this product is a no-brainer. It gives you all the texts you need. All you have to do is copy and send them in the order that you’re shown. No effort, creativity or guesswork required. This system is proven to work. Just use it and get your ex back before they end up with a new partner.

>>> Get “Text Your Ex Back” Now <<<








What Can Marketers Learn From the Children In Our Lives? Plenty

This may be of some interest.

What Can Marketers Learn from Kids?

What Can Marketers Learn from Kids?

In my experience, most marketers fancy themselves as lifelong learners, taking pride in innovating their work and skill set to maximize their impact. We keep tabs on emerging trends, tactics, and tools. We follow industry leaders for their insight. We consult our internal teams and external partners for advice. 

But there may be one specialty group we don’t look to for inspiration enough: The kids in our lives.

As a parent of two adorable monsters who are growing up way to fast, I’ve been reflecting a lot on how far they’ve come. Of course, I’ve realized that I’ve come far too, as both a parent and a marketer. And I’d wager that most of us have kids in our lives who have the potential to teach and remind us of some important things that can make us better humans and better at what we do.

So, what marketing lessons can the little ones in our lives pass on? Here are a few that have been illuminated for me recently.

4 Marketing Lessons We Can Learn from Kids

#1 – Foster permanent curiosity. 

Lately, on the 20-minute commute to daycare, we’ve been listening to “But Why?” It’s a fantastic podcast by Vermont Public Radio. It’s just incredible. Kids from all over North America send audio clips of themselves asking the most unexpected, puzzling, and just plain fun questions. This week we learned why we laugh, why boys and girls are different, and why sugar is bad for you.

Curiosity is one of the simplest and most powerful lessons we can learn from a child. As a marketer, this makes me ask: What can we do stay curious against a backdrop of back-to-back meetings, tight budgets, and the unending barrage of emails? There’s a lot of opportunity for curiosity to creep in.

  • Professional Development: Can you carve out a little time each week to drink a cup of coffee and surf your favorite industry publications for the latest news? Is there a certification or training that’s been on the backburner?
  • Strategic Innovation: As you head into your quarterly or annual marketing strategy planning sessions, how deep have you dug into why you’re making your recommendations? Or better yet, have you considered other possibilities? A way to innovate? 
  • Reflection and Growth: We all experience our fair share of fire drills. We immediately spring into action, oftentimes without asking all the “why” questions. Furthermore, we may not take the time to look back to learn how we got there. What processes could be fine-tuned? What is the true cause of a marketing mishap? (Tip: I like to employ the Urgent Important Matrix attributed to President Eisenhower to help balance my day.)

#2 – Employ resilient trust.

When both of my babes were around 6 to 9 months old, they learned to jump into our laps, assisted by Mom or Dad’s hands securely around their waist. They were so proud of their amazing feats. And through repetition, they knew we’d always be there to catch them—even when they jumped unexpectedly.

Aided by their caretakers helping hands and guidance, kids learn new things and take risks, eventually without fear. Why? Because trust has been built.

In the marketing world, when trust is a focus, you can forge incredible bonds colleagues, clients or customers, prospects, and partners. And in a time when trust is dwindling among consumers, it’s more critical than ever.

#3 – Be coachable.

My persistent (and often stubborn) children throw puzzle pieces. They shriek or scream, sometimes when they’re seemingly unprovoked. They make mistakes. But their curious, trusting nature makes them incredibly teachable.

This magical trait is easy to lose once we hit the working world and get some experience under our belts. None of us probably think we’re perfect, but how well do you take feedback? If you want to get results for your company and your career, you need to be open to coaching.

For example, did your supervisor offer some constructive feedback? Rather than put up your defenses, open yourself up to the feedback. You can literally, open your posture (no crossed arms), face her or him directly, and show your listening. Even take notes if it helps!

Or did you get a string of bad customer reviews on social media? Acknowledge their concerns. Offer an opportunity to talk about it more in detail. Point them in the right direction to get help. This not only shows them that you want to create great experiences, but others can see your willingness to take feedback and work to make improvements.

#4 – Keep it simple.

My children never fail to remind me to simplify my life—and my marketing. Whether you’re a parent or caretaker, or you’re watching others raise their kids, we can all admit that parents over-think questions and scenarios all the time. What do I do when my kid asks me where babies come from? Why is that parent so concerned about a kid playing with a cardboard box? Am I a terrible parent for putting my kid in timeout five times today?

But the thing is: Kids often sees the world through the most basic lens. They don’t typically overthink things. They aren’t riddled with stress and anxiety.

This should be a reminder that we shouldn’t sweat the small stuff and that the simple answer is often the right answer. 

For example, you could spend 45 minutes responding to a curt email from a colleague or client, and then hours or days spinning as you wait for a response. Or you could ask the person in question to jump on the phone or huddle for a quick chat. This levels the playing field and limits the potential for misinterpreting signals.

As another example, if you’re in the process of launching a major campaign, can you integrate various tactics to minimize and streamline the work? (Certainly, hiring a trusted agency partner could help with that. Wink.)

Look to the Children

If you want to be a lifelong learner, sometimes you need to go back to basics. The children in our lives can teach us some incredible lessons about curiosity, trust, coachability, and simplicity that can improve our personal and professional lives.

What’s a marketing lesson that you’ve learned from a kid in your life? Tell us in the comments section below.

The post What Can Marketers Learn From the Children In Our Lives? Plenty appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

Thank you for reading.








The Big Diabetes Lie Review

Diabetes is a very serious health problem that affects millions and it also leads to hypertension, heart disease and other problems. This is not a disease to be trifled with. Allowing it to get uncontrolled can mean blindness, amputations, kidney failures or even death.

The implications are severe and if you have diabetes, getting it under control should be your priority. The biggest cause of most type 2 diabetes is one’s diet and sedentary lifestyle. But how do you fix this problem?

The answer – The Big Diabetes Lie.

This program is an online bestseller that has been around for a couple of years now. Written by Max Sidorov, the premise of the guide is that major pharmaceutical companies are more interesting in treating the problem rather than curing it.

There’s big money to be made in medication, insulin, syringes and supplies, etc. The general impression that these companies want you to have is that diabetes requires all these special measures. This is a lie and that’s exactly why Max, titled his book ‘The Big Diabetes Lie’.

The information in this guide is about addressing the root cause of the problem. Treating the symptoms is neither productive nor helpful. Max’s wealth of information in The Big Diabetes lie will show you how to bring the disease to a halt, stabilize your blood sugar levels and lower your risk of diabetes-related complications.

Let’s examine the pros and cons of this highly popular and controversial book.


The Good Points:

1) You’ll see results quickly because the program address one of the most important factors – your diet. By changing your diet, you’ll be assisting to stabilize your blood glucose levels.

The avoidance of refined carbs and other detrimental foods that are revealed in the guide will prevent wild blood sugar fluctuations. Your condition will improve by leaps and bounds.

2) This book was written for laymen. Complex medical terms have been forsaken for simplicity and ease of understanding. It’s an easy read and following the tips will be a breeze.

3) Success depends upon a good plan. Max’s ‘7 Steps to Health’ plan is one that you can count on. All you need to do is follow it to the letter and you’ll see results.

4) You can test the program out for 60-days and if you’re not satisfied, you can always ask for a refund. There is a money-back guarantee. 60 days is long enough for you to see major improvements in your condition.

5) The Big Diabetes Lie has sold thousands of copies. It’s been a bestseller for a few years now with many positive reviews on the official website. This is positive social proof that the product delivers what it says it will.

6) Everything you need is provided. Nutrition tips, diet tricks, meal plans, and so much more to help you get this disease under control. You can’t go wrong with it.

7) The tone of The Big Diabetes Lie is very encouraging. The biggest problem with most diabetes books is that they paint a somber picture of how dangerous this disease is and state that it has no cure.

Sidorov’s book is uplifting and give you hope. Diabetes is NOT a death sentence. If you follow the advice in this book, you’ll not need to worry about diabetes ruining your life. You can lead a full and rewarding life while keeping diabetes under control.


The Bad Points:

1) No product is perfect for everyone. Some diabetes sufferers may see no results, but they’re a very small minority. Type 1 diabetes patients will still need insulin injections to manage the problem. It’s also best to see a doctor to ascertain the severity of your problem. The holistic tips in this guide will complement most doctors’ treatments.

2) You can only buy this book online.


Should You Get It?

A definite yes! If you have diabetes, or you know someone who does, this book is a godsend. The advice is on point, easy to follow and highly effective.

Give it a try for 2 months and you’ll be amazed at how your diabetes comes under your control. Your blood glucose levels will be stable, you’d have shed excess fat, reduced inflammation and look and feel much better.

Every diabetes sufferer will benefit from this book. Get it today and test it out. It’s amazing.

>>> Get “The Big Diabetes Lie” Now <<<








6 Cannes Revelations About B2B Marketing in 2020

This may be of some interest.

City of Cannes Aerial view Image

City of Cannes Aerial view Image

In June the 2019 Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity brought together some of the world’s savviest B2B marketers, brands, and other creative professionals.

From Nike, IKEA, and Visa to Tommy Hilfiger, Microsoft and Target, strong brands and the marketers behind them were involved at Cannes, and the trends they gathered to explore will play a part in shaping how B2B marketers focus their efforts in the months and years ahead.

Here’s a run-down of some of the top B2B marketing and other revelations from this year’s Cannes, and what they’ll mean for your business in 2020 and beyond.

1 — Cannes B2B Marketing Brand Engagement Take-Aways

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One running theme at Cannes this year was centered around being mindful of your brand’s purpose, and how it will be especially important when it comes time to meet your audience’s needs and make the greatest impact.

Being a change-maker brand comes from honing in on consumer desires, so listen to the signals coming from the online platforms where your customers and potential clients spend the majority of their time.

Don’t entirely eschew machine learning when it comes to your data, but build brand trust by ensuring that appropriate and responsible humans have data oversight.

Look to feed off competitive momentum and focus conversations and cultural discussions using creativity, and keep it sincere when it comes to brand activism, while avoiding all hints of opportunism, many at Cannes urged.

Brand engagement, especially through influencer marketing, has been the focus of several recent articles we’ve published, including these:

2 — Cannes B2B Marketing Consumer Journey Take-Aways

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Dig in and embrace the sometimes-messy digital world where your potential customers interact, by communicating with them and taking the time to learn about their lives through what they’re posting online, because cold and impersonal data can only get you so far in the customer journey.

These raw and real connections can unite and forge new relationships in ways that polished marketing campaigns sometimes just can’t, and some of the winners at Cannes showed examples of building these types of connections.

Build strong brand value while also allowing customers to take the wheel, nurture the connections your brand makes, and don’t be afraid to build strong creative partnerships in your efforts.

Valuing the participation of consumers while also standing by your brand’s values were among the trends explored during Cannes this year.

Search taking place from smart speakers and other connected voice-assisted is poised to boom in the coming years, and podcasting is expanding to offer new ways to integrate brand messaging.

Strive to build a seamless voice search approach that meshes with the values and messaging of your brand or that of your client, as sound is the newest frontier for B2B marketers.

We’re written about smart search recently, including in these helpful articles:

[bctt tweet=”“We’re very good at doing marketing on screens. We’re not as good at audio only.” — Bessie Lee, Founder and CEO, Withinlink” username=”toprank”]

3 — Cannes B2B Marketing Diversity Take-Aways

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Cannes made efforts to find and highlight the areas in marketing where diversity continues to be lacking, led by people over 50 and those who are differently-abled, and spent considerable time exploring how setting aside fear and risk can lead to huge economic and strategic opportunities.

Going beyond hiring, diversity should move towards being more of a core piece of a brand’s values, some of those gathered at Cannes noted.

Adding diversity key performance indicators (KPIs) to existing performance metrics would go a long way towards making inclusiveness an important part of opportunity pipelines, and ultimately bottom lines, it was noted during Cannes.

4 — Cannes B2B Marketing Long-Term Planning Take-Aways

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Connections coming from unexpected places and new experiences are poised to change how B2B marketers expand beyond traditional sources, and an emphasis on the power of creativity to strengthen organizations was made at Cannes.

Brands and how they reflect culture at large will become more of a joint initiative at successful firms and in strong marketing efforts, especially in creative campaigns.

Cannes showed that creativity will likely thrive in the coming year, even more-so when it’s increasingly expressed as a team effort, done in what some gathered for the week called real-time branding, with all involved having a creative stake in new marketing initiatives.

Having a relevant and flexible B2B marketing strategy, and building innovative creative methods whether working solo or with an agency, were also take-aways from Cannes this year.

We’ve explored both long-term planning and the question of when is the right time to partner with an agency, in recent articles such as these:

[bctt tweet=”“The value of agency creative is $10 Billion.” — Jay Pattisall, Forrester @jaypattisall” username=”toprank”]

5 — Cannes B2B Marketing Storytelling Take-Aways

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At Cannes a more transformational flavor of storytelling was seen as coming down the pike, one that will help evolve the narrative with more levels of both client and customer experience, all combining to bring better communication to consumers.

Rapidly-expanding digital technologies and more data than ever present challenges, but also massive opportunities, especially when the two combine to help creative storytelling efforts that help drive B2B marketing efforts.

Creating compelling narratives and delivering them in new and relevant ways will play a factor in marketing in 2020 and beyond, and firms utilizing solely technology to overcome marketing barriers may be left behind.

Learning to better recognize the people behind the data and the numbers was also seen as a key trend at Cannes, along with greater incorporation of empathy and intuition in marketing processes.

Neuroaesthetics and an evolving method of storytelling that is always-on will expand on traditional forms of narratives that have been largely limited to a beginning, middle, and end.

Micro-storytelling efforts will also help brands shows that they are listening, and encourage consumers to create and share their own stories.

A few of our helpful looks at storytelling in marketing are these:

6 — Cannes Trust in B2B Marketing Take-Aways

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We’ve focused more than ever on trust in marketing over the past year at TopRank Marketing, with pieces such as these:

At Cannes the power of trust played a major role this year, and how to regain it using transparency, authenticity, and empathy, after being compromised over the past several years in the eyes of many.

A theme that resonated throughout the week was that nothing secures a relationship as powerfully as trust, which is the cornerstone of any long-term partnership.

Trust in platforms and technology were also at the forefront on Cannes this year, and admonitions to shift to marketing strategies that are more real, open, transparent, and true were common themes for rebuilding broken trust.

[bctt tweet=”As the old adage goes: Trust is gained in drops and lost in buckets. #B2BMarketing #trust” username=”toprank”]

Building on Marketing Lessons From Cannes

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These six major theme take-aways in the areas of brand engagement, customer journeys, diversity, long-term planning, storytelling and trust from this year’s Cannes can play a part in your own B2B marketing strategy as we head ever-closer to 2020.

You can also learn more by joining us at upcoming speaking events and conferences. Our CEO Lee Odden will be speaking at Content Marketing World this fall, where on September 3 he’ll be presenting “How to Develop a B2B Influencer Marketing Program That Actually Works” with Amisha Gandhi of SAP, and a solo session on September 4 exploring “Content Marketing Fitness – 10 Exercises to Build Your Marketing Beach Body.”

Our Senior Director of Digital Strategy Ashley Zeckman will also be speaking at Content Marketing World, in “Guardians of Content Vol 1: How to Scale B2B Influencer Content to Save the Galaxy.”

The post 6 Cannes Revelations About B2B Marketing in 2020 appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

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Facebook’s latest warning: Messenger Kids flaw let children chat with strangers

This may be of some interest.

The app was supposed to serve as a “fun, safer solution” for kids online.

A flaw in Messenger Kids, Facebook’s controversial chat app for the under-13 set, allowed thousands of users to enter group chats with strangers, The Verge reported. Oops.

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