Staying Creative during the Coronavirus outbreak 0 234

Tough times often require creative ways to get through it, as all tested solutions may no longer apply. Welcome to 2020.

For those working with content, travel, and events, the recent movement restrictions imposed in several countries around the world are forcing people to discover new ways of staying creative, useful, sane and, in some cases, still getting paid even when the world seems to have come to a standstill.

Monica Stott – Travel blogger

Shifting focus

“All of my trips have been canceled or postponed. I had one skiing trip to France, one trip within the UK, and one trip to Portugal. As I can’t plan anything at the moment, because I don’t know when we will be traveling again, over the next few months, I’m planning on focusing on family lifestyle, which is the secondary niche for my blog. I may end up losing some followers who aren’t interested in children, but no travel content is being read at the moment.”

Monica Stott – Travel blogger – www.thetravelhack.com

Israel Cassol – Model and Digital Influencer

Recycling content

“Due to our quarantine in London, I have been doing lots of housework and cooking that usually would be looked after by our regular cleaner. I have been posting content on the same days as I always have done. However, to maintain regularity whilst I can’t go out, I dig into photos and content previously left out and recycle and use them now. Revisiting content you left behind, forgotten in your laptop’s folders, can also be an amazing therapy as a way of remembering good times when we all took for granted the freedom of coming and going to create unforgettable moments.”

Israel Cassol – Model and Digital Influencer – www.instagram.com/israel.cassol

Kenneth Surat – Designer and Travel Blogger

Learning DIY

“Even as a travel content creator, I have always been a fan of ‘do it yourself’ carpentry.

The challenge is when you run out of materials as all hardware shops have been closed in my city. I’ve heard of people that are making their own face masks, using fabrics that allow them to wash it over and over again. Although it is only a very basic barrier against Covid-19, it keeps people busy when there is very little to do.”

Kenneth Surat – Travel Blogger – www.kennethsurat.com

 

May King Tsang – Professional Live Tweeter, Social Media Correspondent

Working with virtual events

“The current pandemic has given me an opportunity to think creatively! Before it, I would go to events, and I’d create an instant buzz for them by generating live social media posts, real-time content featuring event organisers, speakers, and attendees. After asking myself if I could keep that same level of excitement virtually, one of my clients turned his face-to-face 1-day conference into a virtual one, because of Covid-19, and I jumped on the opportunity to help. As a result, after creating 13 Facebook posts, 19 LinkedIn pieces of content, and over 700 tweets – which combined reach was over 4 Million accounts – I can see some of these posts still gaining likes and comments today. I am now reaching out to more face-to-face conferences who are shifting towards conducting their conference virtually, as I am still able to create my FOMO content. It is different from face-to-face events, but I can still make an impact with my work nevertheless.”

May King Tsang – Social Media Correspondent – www.twitter.com/MayKingTea

Other ways to keep creative indoors

Photo: Bench Accounting

Create a production calendar

Many content creators and marketeers already have a publishing calendar. Now, it is time to get efficient when it comes to bulk creation.

Start by confirming which platform works best for you. Then, double-check engagement to see what your audience reacts well to and create even better-related posts in the near future.

 

Discover indoor photo-worthy things

By now, you are probably getting used to the idea that shooting outdoors may yet take a while. Studios that I often work at, in London, have suspended their activities and sent out emails canceling photoshoots. It hasn’t stopped me creating imagery, though.

When it comes to content, you can still do wonderful things without setting foot outside your home. Look for old books, corners with good natural lights, unusual shapes. Don’t underestimate your kitchen worktop or any drawers around your home that haven’t been opened in a while – you will be surprised how many gems can be found when you are actively looking for it.

 

Stock up on production

When it comes to your own image bank, you should have the same approach. Many people have to toilet rolls in times of pandemics: stock it up. Reserve a set of hours, once a week, to create content that you can leverage later in the month, be it blog entry, clever content copy, or photography.

 

Make research a habit

Good content doesn’t magically fall from the sky. You can be an excellent photographer or a seasoned copywriter, and, still, some days, you will find yourself struggling to get your creative juices flowing. Create a ‘brainstorm’ folder in your PC to save ideas, chats, prints, and random notes of things that catch your attention, online and offline. Then reserve some time to create quality content about them, even if you haven’t been commissioned for a specific topic. Add to your folder a list of relevant hashtags and topics that are making headlines, as well as things that keep people talking.

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Marcio Delgado is a Journalist, speaker and a Content Producer working with brands and publications in the UK and Latin America.

How to create evergreen content to boost your social media strategy 0 168

No social media strategy is complete without evergreen posts to help balance your content calendar. They are the posts that cover topics that will remain relevant for your readers, over time, even if they are new followers who have just found your social media channels.

For someone with a news background, like me, understanding the basics of evergreen articles has always come easily.  This is exactly what journalists frequently have to do: we have to create both contemporary, factual content and evergreen features that can be used when the contemporary content is lacking in quantity or quality.

Think of a fashion magazine, for example.

Every issue will explore articles focused on current trends or pop culture fads. You can expect an issue to almost certainly bring you features on the latest clothing collections, and maybe even a perfume launched by a singer or football player.

However, the content that makes you keep a magazine as you know you will read it again later, or lend it to a friend, are the articles with a much longer shelf life because good quality evergreen content has almost no expiry date.

Have you noticed how beauty tutorials, how-to lists, and DIY videos never seem to age?.

Maybe talking about Kylie Jenner’s lipstick range won’t add much to your content strategy for Instagram. However, it is possible for a very wide range of businesses to create evergreen content about family, saving money, careers, travel, or adopting a sustainable lifestyle – just to name five very relatable topics. The trick, when using topics with such broad appeal as the foundation of your evergreen content, is to deliver it in a unique way, is committed to your brand’s voice, and making it useful for as long as possible, so your posts don’t become rapidly disposable.

Remember a very important SEO rule: the longer your post is relevant, the longer it will keep bringing traffic to it.

Let’s look at some inspiring tips to create long-lasting content?

 

Leverage excerpts from previous content

“Reuse long-form items, such as blogs or videos, to create timeless pieces to be used in the future. From infographics to quotes, which can summarize or emphasize a relevant topic, there is always useful information you can lift, from already published long-form material, and turn it into evergreen content.”

Amy Hernandez – Public Relations Manager at ElectrIQ Marketing.

 

Tap into your brand’s core values

“Sharing your brand’s purpose or core values on social media is an effective way to promote long-lasting, evergreen content. In theory, your purpose and core values won’t change too much over time, so telling stories that bring what your company stands for to life will withstand the test of time. Establishing a core value theme on social media will not only help ensure you are regularly sharing this type of content, but will also educate prospective customers about your brand.”

Lisa Hirst Carnes – COO at www.arcstone.com

 

Use Google trends to find topics

“Since we started our business, we have focused on generating evergreen content for our blog and social media. In our experience, the most important step for creating evergreen content is to identify the good evergreen subject matter. A great way to do this is to use Google Trends to check the trend line of the subject matter. If Google Trends shows consistent interest in the subject matter over the course of months or years, you have likely found a good subject. Alternatively, if Google Trends shows peaks and valleys, the subject matter is likely more on the trendy side and may not be suitable for evergreen content. Once you have identified the right subject matter, make the content as complete and comprehensive as possible, so that it becomes the go-to content for anyone interested in that subject matter.”

Jessica Rose – Chief Executive Officer at www.copperh2o.com

 

Create useful DIY posts

“People love learning new things that are easy to understand, and almost every niche can find a relevant how-to to push out to their audience a few times a year. You can also add a caption to it, such as, “Back by popular demand!” to grab attention and acknowledge that you realize it has been posted before.

Another evergreen idea would be historical posts. A great example would be a “this day in” history article. Unless a big new discovery changes what we know about that historical event, it will still be applicable that day every year.”

Camille Chulick – Co-Founder at averraglow.com

 

Create a mind map to address essential points

“Focus on content related to the core issues of your niche and create a mind map to write approximately four essential points that will always be of concern. Then, for each essential point of interest in your niche, list as many spin-off article ideas as you can think of. Once you have your list of article ideas, go back and cross off anything that wouldn’t make sense a couple of years ago. If it would not make sense two years ago because it involved current events, it is likely that it won’t be relevant 24 months from now and shouldn’t be considered as evergreen content.”

Morgan Taylor – Chief Marketing Officer at www.letmebank.com

 

Research keywords for your industry

“One tip I have is to do some keyword research around some evergreen topics you have in mind for your industry. Look for keywords that have consistent search intent (e.g. are not seasonal or declining in search results). The idea here is to discover trends that people are searching for on a regular basis. Additionally, doing this research on keywords can lead you to find new inspiration from similar keywords you’re researching.
Even though keywords may not be super relevant for social media, it’s a great way to discover relevant topics to create evergreen content around.”

Katie Fellenz – Head of Marketing at www.trustandwill.com

 

Elevate your strategy with user-generated content

“By using UGC, be it testimonials, questions, staff contributions, stories, or images sent by customers, your users become brand advocates and will engage in positive word-of-mouth marketing.

Besides being cost-effective, user-generated content is the most authentic, trustworthy, and reliable form of content available across the digital space. It is driven by users’ real experiences and 90% of users trust UGC to influence their buying decisions.”

Daniel Thomas – Co-founder at www.tt-creative.com

 

Check the performance of previous content

“The best way to create quality evergreen content is to study previously published content that still makes a massive impact on your social media platform’s engagement metrics, despite being posted a long time ago.

When you find such posts, the chances are high that there are similar characteristics shared between these evergreen posts. Once you identify them, you can incorporate those elements into future posts to increase the frequency of evergreen content in your social media channels.”

Yaniv Masjedi – CMO at www.nextiva.com

 

Choose a topic that solves problems

“Evergreen content requires time but is worth every effort.
FAQ articles, videos, and posts are must-haves for your social media strategy. They are efficient evergreen content that helps guide users towards a more informed understanding of your product or service. If an instruction or feature changes, don’t forget to upgrade and ‘refresh’. Doing this will keep your content fresh and relevant and, besides your audience, search engines will also continue to value it.”

Supriya Agnihotri  Brand Communications Manager at www.surveysensum.com

 

#DigitalMarketing #ContentMarketing #EvergreenContent #SocialMedia #ContentCreation

Can IGTV help a business to engage with and sell to an audience? 0 172

In 2020, video content remains a strong tool for marketing. IGTV continues to grow exponentially and is not showing signs of being replaced by other media formats any time soon. The pandemic has only further boosted social media usage in 2020 and Instagram’s determination to make its answer to YouTube work at all costs.

When Facebook first launched IGTV, in 2018, brands were reluctant to use it. The service would allow users to watch longer videos made for mobile devices directly through Instagram or through the stand-alone IGTV app. However, brands did not believe the new tool justified spending extra money and time in adapting content to a vertical format, as part of a marketing strategy.

To attract viewers and creators, Instagram has moved fast in the last few months.

Firstly, Instagram enabled users to share a 15-second preview of IGTV content to their feed. The aim of this was to lure audiences to check the rest of the content on IGTV. In May, the social platform announced that they would introduce ads and share IGTV revenue with influencers. And, to make sure the video segment of the platform would get a boost in content, Instagram introduced a feature allowing people to upload Instagram Lives directly to IGTV. This decision benefits those viewers who missed a Live and, by default, is helping Instagram to increase its IGTV content.

2019 Social Media Marketing Industry Report shows that more than 50% of marketers are producing videos on YouTube and Facebook, with 38% of digital marketing professionals using Instagram Stories, and 26% using native Instagram videos like IGTV.

But the question that everyone is looking for an answer to is: Can IGTV help a business engage and sell to an audience?

Social media experts and business owners share their successful tips ahead of 2021. According to a study by Cisco, the worldwide leader in IT, networking and cybersecurity solutions, mobile video will account for 78% of total mobile data traffic by next year. If IGTV hasn’t made its way into your content calendar, the right time to start doing it is now.

 

Subtitles are key for IGTV engagement

“We find that video content is king when it comes to engagement and IGTV has been an excellent add-on paired with an existing robust strategy. If it’s teachable, listable, informative, and a on brand IGTV can be an engagement powerhouse.

Keep in mind that subtitles are key! Over 85% of users view the video on social media with their sound off. You don’t want to put all of your efforts into crafting an amazing video, only to have people scroll right past it.

Unfortunately, for a few businesses, there is a lack of understanding around IGTV’s value. This can then translate into lower engagement and enthusiasm overall. On the flip side, however, clients who are in the health and beauty industry have benefitted from the extended engagement. Audiences are hungry, during this pandemic, for content that they can learn from.”

Kris Lal – CEO at content agency www.curatorsocial.com

Never stop making it better

“IGTV can help engage your existing audience and also help grow your audience further! IGTV takes some time to master and you want to ensure that your entire video runs smoothly. My best advice before implementing IGTV into your digital marketing strategy is to practice. Your audience wants concise and engaging information, not forced sales messages.”

Cali Saturn – Digital Marketing specialist at SEO agency www.direction.com

 

Add a call to action to promote your IGTV

“Yes, IGTV can help a business to engage and sell to an audience. Importantly, the aesthetic of the video content is important. Repurposing the video for use beyond IGTV is the key. Add a “Call to Action” on the short clips or snapshots on Instagram Stories. Additionally, start planning for the 15-second version of the content for Instagram’s new function – Instagram Reels.”

Bernie Wong – Founder at www.social-stand.com

 

Keep it genuine

“If you’re in the medical industry, like me, the material you post might be behind-the-scenes footage of specific medical procedures. Or, it might be basic talks about intimidating medical procedures. People also want to see genuine stuff. So, producing original content with audiences can allow you to create a successful IGTV channel with a devout audience.”

Dr. Vikram Tarugu – Gastroenterologist and medical professional at www.detoxofsouthflorida.com

 

Make the most out of your current followers

“Something to keep in mind is that IGTV works well when you already have a large enough audience. This is because it does not appear in hashtag rankings as well as posts do. So, depending on what your strategy is, IGTV can help boost existing follower engagement rates. IGTV promotes resharing or saving content to accounts. In comparison, posts usually promote a user to hit the like or comment buttons.”

Terry Tateossian – Founding Partner of full-service boutique agency www.socialfix.com

Use it as your permanent shop window

“IGTV can be very beneficial for business, particularly for selling products rather than services. With IGTV you’ll be able to describe the product in-depth. Show BTS footage and you can even have potential customers take a closer look at the material.”

Sharon Mills – Lead Publicist at public relations and partnerships agency www.bysbm.com

 

Grab viewers’ attention as fast as you can

“I use IGTV to promote our podcast, Entrepaidneur Sessions. We post highlights from our episode, which gets our viewers excited about watching a full episode.
It has worked. My super tip is to make sure that the content you post is engaging. If you can catch people’s attention in the first 30 seconds, the likelihood that they will watch the entire video, and take the recommended action you want them to take, is much higher.”

Jennifer Onwumere – Founder at Jen-gerbread Marketing

 

Repurpose content that appeals to your audience

“Generally speaking, Instagram is great for younger audiences and niches where rich visuals sell. You don’t necessarily have to create more content, you just have to focus on repurposing it accordingly, as businesses need to try to find ways to turn one piece of content into seven or eight pieces of content.

But you will need to know well your target audience to decide if it worth the extra work. Are they likely to consume IGTV?

The more you know your audience, the better you can decide what to do when it comes to creating content for IGTV – or any other feature – as part of your digital strategy.”

Jack Choros – CMO at content optimization agency www.ironmonk.com.

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