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Mastering Content Promotion: 7 Things You Must Do

All too often, content creation, distribution and promotion is seen as an afterthought – something that can be done once all the other ‘important’ jobs have been completed. This mindset can have a negative impact on business, however, as without an effective content strategy in place in can be hard get your name out there and give your company the boost it really needs.

In fact, the right content promotion strategy can improve conversion rates, increase leads and assist brand awareness campaigns. It’s also a cost-effective way to market products, advertise jobs, network with other businesses/prospective employees, and provide industry-specific information that could gain you much-needed respect within the entrepreneurial world.

In short, mastering content promotion is of paramount importance, so here are seven things you must do to avoid getting lost in the ever-changing sea of content tactics:

1. Devise a thorough content-promotion plan

Worryingly, many business owners think that anyone can write gripping copy. This is often reflected in their hiring strategy in which highly-trained copywriters are ignored in favour of budding marketing experts who are only able to knock up a bit of average sales copy here and there.

The reality is, content is an extremely important part of business, and if you want your strategy to be a success it’s not only important to hire trained writers, but to also think carefully about what you’re going to say and when. The needs of customers are forever changing as are their wants, so try to:

  • Devise a content promotion plan with highly-defined goals.
  • Set monthly deadlines and benchmarks for success.
  • Have short-term and long-term strategies in place that can be easily adapted.

2. Give your audience a reason to care

If you see someone on the street, you might not care too much about them, as you know little about their life. Start speaking to them, however, learn about their story and you’ll probably find your become much more emotionally attached.

The same applies to business.

Companies with a strong brand and a compelling history are much easier to warm to than faceless firms which give their audience no reason to care or react. Many well-known organisations even become household names touching the hearts, minds and souls of people all over the world, which is why it’s essential to develop your own brand’s story. This can then inform you content promotion strategy and allow for ongoing marketing ideas that your customers can connect with.

3. Stand out from the crowd with free content

When it comes to content creation, producing top-notch copy that’s informative, factual and helpful is key – but that’s not all. While it can be tempting to charge for your best articles, blogs, whitepapers, etc., it can actually be better to offer up epic content for free.

Think about it: if your audience knows they have to splash out for every word your business writes, they might be tempted to look elsewhere – even if what you’ve produced is wonderful. On the other hand, if you post content for free, you’ll not only stand out from the crowd as a go-to resource, but you should develop a loyal following which is fantastic for brand awareness and hopefully sales.

Stand out from the crowd

4. Select the right promotional channels

These days, there are many promotional channels for content including social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Before you spread your latest musings across the web, however, it is really important to select the right promotional channels from the start. To do this, find out where your ideal clients are already hanging out on a regular basis.

Are they Facebook addicts who respond happily to Facebook ads or are they more up for retweets here and there? Perhaps they want to avoid these somewhat casual platforms and stick to networking through LinkedIn? A little bit of research will go a long way in this case and save you lots of time, money and effort placing content where it’s not needed or wanted.

5. Cross-promote your best content

While you don’t want to be splashing your content over any social site you come across, there are many ways you can cross-promote your material without spamming or annoying people. When you know which platforms prospective customers are using, you can then devise a plan to link all your marketing efforts together. For example, you could drive your LinkedIn followers to a webinar. You could then post the webinar to YouTube and direct followers back to LinkedIn to give their feedback.

6. Engage with and listen to your audience

Having a content strategy is one thing, but it’s not set in stone. To keep your audience engaged, you must learn to listen and react to what is being said. If you don’t, there’s a high chance they will switch off and go elsewhere. With goals and targets to meet it can be easy to throw content at people in the hope you will get your leads or conversions, but by forming loyal bonds with prospective clients you’re sure to have much better long-term success. While your content strategy plan should guide your actions, it must be tweaked to ensure you stay on point.

Analyse your results

7. Keep a close eye on results

Finally, you must always keep a close eye on what’s working and what’s not. There are many tools available out there such as HubSpot which can help you figure out how many page views, followers or social shares you’ve earned, so keep a close eye on results – and if you don’t know how, employ someone who does. Don’t forget to give your campaigns time to work, however, and avoid putting a stop to certain strategies based on early results.

Content promotion is an important part of business and one that’s often overlooked. It can help with everything from brand awareness to annual turnover, so make sure you’ve a well thought out strategy in place. Contact the team at Minerva Creative today to discuss how we can help support you in disseminating your content to right audience at the right time.

Advertising That Sells (Part 4) – Big Ideas

David Ogilvy

4. Big ideas.

Unless your advertising is built on a big idea, it will pass like a ship in the night. It takes a big idea to jolt the consumer out of his indifference – to make him notice your advertising, remember it and take action.

Big ideas are usually simple ideas. Said Charles Kettering, the great General Motors inventor: “this problem, when solved, will be simple.” Big, simple ideas are not easy to come by. They require genius – and midnight oil. A truly big one can be continued for 20 years – like our eye patch for Hathaway shirts.

Previous entries

View previous entries in the ‘How to create advertising that sells’ series from David Ogilvy on the Minerva Copywriting website:

Discover more

Find out more about David Ogilvy’s acclaimed tenets of advertising across the Minerva Copywriting website, starting at the beginning of ‘How to create advertising that sells‘.

Alternatively, you can find out more about the copywriting services provided by Minerva Copywriting today. Simply browse our website and discover more about the SEO content writing, advertising copy, email marketing, and social media content services currently available from our friendly and experienced team.

You can even contact our friendly team today by submitting an online enquiry form or by calling FREE on 0800 180 4085. We’ll be happy to provide you with a free sample of work, and also quote you on any content or copywriting requirements you may have.

Advertising That Sells (Part 3) – Brand Image

David Ogilvy

3. Brand image.

Every advertisement should contribute to the complex symbol which is the brand image. 95% of all advertising is created ad hoc. Most products lack any consistent image from one year to another.

The manufacturer who dedicates his advertising to building the most sharply defined personality for his brand gets the largest share of the market.

Previous entries

View previous entries in the ‘How to create advertising that sells’ series from David Ogilvy on the Minerva Copywriting website:

Discover more

Find out more about David Ogilvy’s acclaimed tenets of advertising across the Minerva Copywriting website, starting at the beginning of ‘How to create advertising that sells‘.

Alternatively, you can find out more about the copywriting services provided by Minerva Copywriting today. Simply browse our website and discover more about the SEO content writing, advertising copy, email marketing, and social media content services currently available from our friendly and experienced team.

You can even contact our friendly team today by submitting an online enquiry form or by calling FREE on 0800 180 4085. We’ll be happy to provide you with a free sample of work, and also quote you on any content or copywriting requirements you may have.

Advertising That Sells (Part 2) – Large Promise

David Ogilvy

2. Large promise.

The second most important decision is this: what should you promise the customer?

A promise is not a claim, or a theme, or a slogan. It is a benefit for the consumer. It pays to promise a benefit which is unique and competitive, and the product must deliver the benefit your promise.

Most advertising promises nothing. It is doomed to fail in the marketplace.

“Promise, large promise, is the soul of an advertisement” – said Samuel Johnson.

Previous entries

View previous entries in the ‘How to create advertising that sells’ series from David Ogilvy on the Minerva Copywriting website:

Discover more

Find out more about David Ogilvy’s acclaimed tenets of advertising across the Minerva Copywriting website, starting at the beginning of ‘How to create advertising that sells‘.

Alternatively, you can find out more about the copywriting services provided by Minerva Copywriting today. Simply browse our website and discover more about the SEO content writing, advertising copy, email marketing, and social media content services currently available from our friendly and experienced team.

You can even contact our friendly team today by submitting an online enquiry form or by calling FREE on 0800 180 4085. We’ll be happy to provide you with a free sample of work, and also quote you on any content or copywriting requirements you may have.

Advertising That Sells (Part 1)

David Ogilvy 'How to create advertising that sells'

How to create advertising that sells

“Ogilvy & Mather has created over $1,480,000,000 worth of advertising. Here, with all the dogmatism of brevity are 38 of the things we have learned.”

By David Ogilvy

1. The most important decision

We have learned that the effect of your advertising on your sales depends more on this decision than on any other: how should you position your product?

Should you position Schweppes as a soft drink – or as a mixer?

Should you position Dove as a product for dry skin or as a product which gets hands really clean?

The results of your campaign depend less on how we write your advertising than how your product is positioned. It follows that positioning should be decided before the advertising is created.

Research can help. Look before you leap.

David Ogilvy

The Art of App Description Writing

In today’s short attention span marketplace, words are at a premium. We’ve gone from infinitely long blogs to Facebook-style snappy posts, and then taken things even further with Twitter, Vine and Snapchat. This has implications in the copywriting world, with brevity now king. If you can’t get your message across in 100 characters or less, you are in danger of being dismissed as “too long winded.” Nowhere is this more important than with app writing.

Though catalogue writing has never lent itself to volumes of words, online catalogue writing is a lot more competitive. In a traditional sense, all products are being sold by one shop, so competition between items is unlikely. But on Apple’s App Store, or the Google Play store, every app is fighting every other app for downloads. There could be hundreds, thousands, or even hundreds of thousands of competitors out there, so writing the right content is a case of sink or swim.

So how can you best go about it? Well, here are some tips and pointers that can give you the best chance of surviving in this overcrowded market place.

Know your marketplace

Much like how there would be differences between advertising in a kids magazine and advertising in a financial newspaper, there are key differences between the App Store and Google Play. Here are some of the fundamentals:

  • App names can be 255 characters on the App Store, but only 30 characters on Google Play
  • The Apple’s App Store has a keyword field, whereas Google Play does not
  • You can use five screenshots on the App Store, and eight on Google Play
  • Both allow video previews but Google Play’s (max. two minutes) is longer than the App Store’s (max. 30 seconds)
  • The App Store uses categories (one dominant, one sub) for each app (three for games), but Google Play uses only one
  • Google Play allows for social likes, via the Google + “+1” system, but the App store has none

The key difference to understand is that keywords in the description have no effect on ranking in the App Store (hence the inclusion of the Keyword Field), but they do have an effect on the app’s ranking on Google Play. Keywords are still important on the App Store, of course, as Google still indexes iTunes pages (and keywords within the content are a ranking factor), but it is a finer balancing act on Google Play.

Know when to fold ‘em

The “fold” in ASO (App Store Optimisation) speak refers to both the cut-off point of a description and the app name itself when looking from a mobile device. At some point, for the sake of compacting the screen, both will be cut off. That means that the first one or two sentences, or even the first few words, are critical.

As you can see from screenshots, you don’t get much. Generally speaking, 225 characters is the limit for iTunes description cut-off point, whereas the title will be cut off after about 30 characters. In more accurate terms, the title or description won’t exceed a certain amount of pixels. Make sure you preview everything to make sure you fit within these vague limits.

So, while you don’t get a lot, there are effective ways to work within these boundaries. To maximise effect, you have two choices – either sum up the whole app in this short space, or push the unique selling point. Hopefully, you’ll be able to give a complete description of the app in this short space. If your game app is simple, this is easily achievable.

If, however, your app can’t be described so succinctly, you have to change gears and focus on its USP. What does your app do that others don’t? When users are browsing, giving them a killer hook will usually be enough to at least warrant a closer inspection. Then the other characters in your description can take over.

Reeling them in

To use an ocean analogy, the above fold text is the bait on the hook you have cast off from your little boat. It’s designed to tempt the potential user, before you reel them in with the other tools at your disposal. The title and short description might be the combo that gets them hooked, but it’s the longer description that finishes the job.

Both stores have a 4,000-character limit in their descriptions. That’s a lot, and it’s important to use it all, and use it well. Users these days don’t want a lot of “fluff” content. Give them details, give them stats, give them reviews, and then get out of there. Obviously, you should do your utmost to dress this content up professionally, but don’t waste characters on something that won’t matter in the user’s final decision.

Otherwise, the best advice we can give is to use tried and tested short advertising guidelines. Short sentences, short paragraphs, smart lines breaks and useful bullet points will all combine to get the message across effectively. It is very important to get it right, therefore you should consider using a professional copywriting agency.

Lie detector

Finally, it’s important to be honest. The internet is not a great place for corporate “white lies” – they have a tendency to be found out. Overselling your game may pay dividends in the short term, but the truth will come to light sooner or later, which could have catastrophic effects on both the current app and any you as a developer launch in the future (due to lack of trust).

If including stats, don’t make them up. Don’t make up reviews. And don’t make your app out to be something it isn’t. But DO mention everything good about the app. If it cracks one million downloads, great. Tell new users about the large user base they would be stepping into. If a major reviewer gives it a great score, fantastic. Include snippets in the description. You may find it a struggle at first, but the possible pay off for the honest way outweighs the potential pitfalls of being deceitful.

So, in conclusion, the “art” of app description writing lies within a few simple disciplines. Know the differences between app stores. Be succinct and punchy. And above all else – accentuate the positives.

Why copywriting services are essential to online success

For any company looking to dominate search engines, effective SEO and digital marketing are a must, and key to such dominance are quality copywriting services. As more and more companies battle for limited space on page one of Google, gaining the upper hand in any way possible means investing in the most effective, most influential factors related to marketing. And, when it comes to influence, few methods have such an enduring effect as content marketing.

Of course, for content marketing to perform at its best, a combination of professional copywriting services and intelligent SEO is required. But what exactly are the benefits of copywriting services and why should your business look to invest? We take a look at five key reasons why copywriting services are essential to online success.

1. Fresh content pleases Google

Google likes relevancy. Whether that’s relevancy of subject or time-sensitivity, relevant content is the key to better online performance. As such, regular production of unique content is fundamental to better rankings. The more regularly you write and add content to your website or blog, the more regularly Google will crawl your website, the more pages you have indexed, and the more keywords and traffic you’re able to capitalise on. By investing in copywriting services, you can have a provider supply you with quality content, day in, day out.

2. Attract links

Creating content for the sake of it is, to all intents and purposes, a waste of time and energy. Any piece of content you create and post on your website should seek to achieve a goal, whether that’s to push towards conversion, engage with users, or attract links. And, as has been the case for many years, attracting links is all-important to online success. By taking the time to create high-quality content, you end up with a piece of work that is refined and detailed, informative and engaging. As such, the likelihood of attracting links and boosting your rankings is enhanced significantly.

3. Stay engaged

Generating a relationship with an audience plays an important role in getting more leads and converting more sales. By investing in copywriting services, you can benefit from the experience of professional copywriters who know how to engage with audiences of all types. Regardless of demographic, quality copywriters can adapt the content they create to engage on an emotional level, triggering the response you need to achieve your goals.

4. Convert

Connecting with an audience is one thing, converting that audience into sales and revenue is something altogether different. Working with an experienced copywriting agency enables you to develop a user experience that is tailored towards conversion. With persuasive content, evocative prose, and clear call to actions, quality copywriters will help guide users precisely where you want them to head, and boost the conversion rate of your website.

5. Promote social activity

Social media plays an integral role in modern business, with the power of effective social marketing able to boost sales and revenue to unprecedented levels. Key to social media marketing is content. Without engaging content to share, activity on social networks all but comes to a standstill. By investing in copywriting services and the experience of a content marketing agency, you can develop a social strategy that utilises the content created and promotes online interactions.

To find out more about how copywriting services and content marketing can help your business achieve more online, contact Minerva Copywriting today on 0800 180 4085. We take pride in developing high-quality content that will engage with your target audience. You can even receive a free sample of content by completing the form on this page.

What is copywriting?

What is copywriting?

Copywriting is a form of communication that conveys advertising and marketing messages to an audience through print, online, television, and more. Unlike other writing professions – such as journalism – the purpose of copywriting is to raise brand awareness and to persuade a target audience to purchase a product or invest in a service.

The responsibilities of a copywriter vary from position to position, and according to the medium through which the marketing/advertising is to take place. Copy can take on long or short forms, scripts, web content, radio jingles, product reviews, books, brochures, and much more. Copywriting is also integral to social media activity, used, as it is, in blogs, status updates, and promotional activity.

What is copywriting for?

Copywriting is essential for the dissemination of marketing and advertising material to target audiences. From a business perspective, the role of copywriting is to promote the benefits of a particular product or service, persuading potential customers to invest. But copywriting also plays an important role in raising awareness of a brand.

Branding is vital to any organisation, conveying the ethics and identity of a given company, and attracting new audiences to the existence of its being. Without copywriting and copy, transmission of identity and values would be all-but impossible, so it’s essential that every brand utilises the services of copywriting professionals.

What is a copywriter?

Copywriting is, of course, carried out by a copywriter. Most copywriters will work either in an agency or client-side capacity, conducting work for either a number of clients or just one. Increasingly, copywriters work on a freelance or contractual basis, providing them with the freedom to move from one project to another. In addition, professional copywriting agencies (such as Minerva Copywriting) employ a number of writers to work across client projects. The advantages of such a system are the easy scalability of projects and also quality control measures being in place.

For a copywriter, the role includes a number of responsibilities. From customer profiling to proofreading, research to writing, there are myriad tasks involved in crafting copy. Even conceptual copywriting of just a few words – the kind you might see in adverts on television or in glossy magazines – demands extensive care and attention, with the need to invest time and effort into developing the perfect message and emotional response.

Often, a copywriter will work as part of a creative team, partnering with an art director or graphic designer. The modern era of internet marketing, however, has seen the relationships copywriters have with others expand, with SEO professionals often working alongside copywriters in generating a content marketing strategy for a website.

In such instances, even greater responsibility is afforded to a copywriter, who will be tasked with conducting further tasks in the completion of a project. These include data analysis, keyword research, website optimisation, and more.

History of copywriting

Copywriting has been an integral role of marketing and advertising since the dawn of the industry. As such, there has been substantial evolution in the role and refinement of what types of copy work best for selected audiences and mediums. This has meant that the transition from long-form copy to shorter adverts, in-depth website copy to engaging scripts, has been continual. And, as new forms of marketing channels open up over the years to come, copywriting will evolve once more.

Famous copywriters

The advertising industry is littered with household names that built a reputation on their copywriting skills. Below is a list of just some of the most famous copywriters to have created iconic adverts and marketing material over the years, as well as some who would go on to future careers in other disciplines.

  • David Abbott
  • David Ogilvy
  • William Bernbach
  • Leo Burnett
  • Don DeLillo
  • F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • Terry Gilliam
  • Alan Parker
  • Salman Rushdie

Quotes on copywriting

“Copy is a direct conversation with the consumer.”
Shirley Polykoff

“If you can’t turn yourself into a consumer, you probably shouldn’t be in the advertising business at all.”
Leo Burnett

“Consumers do not buy products. They buy product benefits.”
David Ogilvy

“We want consumers to say, ‘That’s a hell of a product’ instead of, ‘That’s a hell of an ad.’”
Leo Burnett

“When I write an advertisement, I don’t want you to tell me that you find it ‘creative.’ I want you to find it so interesting that you buy the product.”
David Ogilvy

“The consumer isn’t a moron; she is your wife. You insult her intelligence if you assume that a mere slogan and a few vapid adjectives will persuade her to buy anything.”
David Ogilvy

“Make it simple. Make it memorable. Make it inviting to look at. Make it fun to read.”
Leo Burnett

“Let us prove to the world that good taste, good art, and good writing can be good selling.”
William Bernbach

“A copywriter should have an understanding of people, an insight into them, a sympathy toward them.”
George Gribbin

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Are you paying enough for content?

female-writer-1500x500-e1430223811138

”You get what you pay for”, they always say. “Pfft,” we reply. “I know a bargain when I see one.” But do we? We all want the best value for money, that much is true. And, in pursuit of the best value, we usually plump for the cheapest option. This is where the potential of saving money blinds our decisions. In business as in life, cheap does not necessarily mean value for money. “You get what you pay for,” they say.

When it comes to content marketing – the hot topic for marketers the world over – trying to secure value for money is particularly challenging. Should you opt for a reliable and professional content marketing agency, or let your SEO team pick some cheap and cheerful content writers off the web? It’s entirely up to you, of course, but it would be our recommendation to choose the former. Why? Well, the answer to that couldn’t be simpler.

Low cost, low quality

Investing in a professional means receiving a professional service. This is the case in building, law, medicine, and every other industry around. So why not content marketing? Professional copywriters and graphic designers have spent years mastering their skills, and they’re there to be relied upon to deliver high-quality service. Don’t you deserve the very best service when you’re spending your money? Or are you happy for your budget to be spent on a faceless freelancer slapping together some copy after they’ve spent eight hours doing their ‘real’ day job?

Pay more, earn more

When you look at it like that, the answer is obvious, isn’t it? You want the best content in order to connect with your target audience. As such, you need to employ the services of those that understand how an audience thinks, how target demographics differ from one another, and how effective use of language can trigger the responses necessary for a successful sale. And yes, it costs money to hire professionals with such knowledge. But in the end, isn’t you success more valuable than saving a few pounds here and there?

Look at your current content and see where it’s working and where it’s not. If it’s not working, try to determine why. If it’s a quality issue, it’s time to ask yourself: are you paying enough for content?

Find out more

We at Minerva Copywriting are experienced in support clients in generating the content they need to succeed. Whether online or off, we can craft engaging copy that triggers the responses you want in your audience. Contact us today on 0800 180 4085 to find out more.

Copywriting Basics: the CTA

Shouting-1500x400

The secret to great sales copywriting is to never forget the overriding objective: making a sale. Even with the online environment changing apace, with social media and brand awareness taking on ever-greater importance, the ultimate aim of copywriting is to push the reader towards a sale. And the simplest way to achieve this? Effective use of a call to action (CTA).

Failing to craft an effective CTA puts to waste the hard work put in to writing engaging copy. Imagine the scenario: you’ve written eloquent, aspirational copy reviewing the latest product for sale with your company. The reader is excited by the engaging introduction, is impressed with the range of features, and is thrilled by the images used. But then what? What should they do next? While it may seem obvious to you and I, some people need clear instructions of what to do – this is your call to action.

Don’t leave people hanging

Identifying the precise steps potential customers need to make is fundamental, regardless of how obvious it may be. Whether long or short, the sales copy being used needs to have a purpose. After all, you’re trying to sell a product or a service, right? Or, at the very least, trigger an emotion or a response?

We writers are often guilty of thinking that people should connect with our work, regardless of the message we’re trying to send. And, no matter how intelligent, radical, or superb that writing is, there will always be those that miss the point (there’s probably people out there who still think ‘Animal Farm’ is just a story about some animals on a farm). It’s by no means condescending, therefore, to simply swallow some pride and give the audience a nudge in the right direction.

Repetition and urgency

Repetition works. Repetition works. Remember when you were at school and you were revising for a test? How did you learn the facts you needed to learn in order to pass? It was probably, like most of us, repeatedly reading and reviewing them until they were embedded onto your mind so that there was no way you could forget them. Don’t be afraid, therefore, to repeat your call-to-action. Whether you’re writing a 1,000-word article or have a three-stage sign-up process, liberally placing your CTA where it’s clear to see is important. Repetition works, you see?

For those companies looking to sell a product or service, meanwhile, it pays to optimise your CTA copy to have urgency. Using words such as ‘now’, ‘today’, ‘limited’, etc. puts your audience on their toes. Creating a sense of urgency makes people act quicker, so the simple addition of such words can help boost sales and make your audience react. Combine this with repetition, and you could soon see your customers converting on a grander scale.

In conclusion…

Ensuring that your page design features suitable space for an effective CTA is fundamental to the success of any marketing campaign. Similarly, the language used in your copy can make the difference between abandoning a shopping cart and increasing conversion. Always ensure the CTA is present and prevalent, and try split testing to determine what works best for specific audiences.

To find out more about copywriting and copywriting services, contact Minerva Copywriting today on 0800 180 4085. Our experienced copywriting team can help develop the content you need to boost sales and increase conversions.

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