10 Can't-Miss Ways to Supercharge Your Content Marketing

Couldn’t make it to Content Marketing World? We’ve got you covered! Here are our 10 takeaways from this year’s show.

Before this year, I was a Content Marketing World newbie. So before attending this year’s CM World conference, I had no idea that everything, and I mean everything is orange—right down to the orange-dyed deviled eggs in the morning and the orange push-ups for dessert. I had no idea that actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt had his own production company (or, in full disclosure, even who he was. But in even fuller disclosure, I have three girls under the age of 10 so if he doesn’t star on the Disney Channel, I’m not going to be familiar). And mostly, I had no idea I could spend 20 intense hours with a bunch of strangers, discussing content marketing of all things, and come out wishing there was another 20 to go.

Share
  • Email
  • Compass Payroll

    The takeaways were endless, but I’ll focus on just the following five:

    Tip No. 1: Build an audience first, then sell them something. In his opening remarks, CM World founder Joe Pulizzi gave the best example of this advice: Star Wars. Creator George Lucas famously negotiated for the exclusive rights to Star Wars merchandise, which has made nearly $20 billion. It wouldn’t be so without that enormous audience of faithful followers.

    Tip No. 2: Know who you are. Identify your secret sauce and how you’re going to get that across to your audience. What sets you apart? What’s your tone? How are you going bring your company’s personality to life?

    Tip. No. 3: Sell the means, not the end. Serta doesn’t sell you a mattress, they sell you a better night’s sleep. Disney doesn’t sell me a vacation, they sell me a week full of family memories. Focus on the end result, the desire fulfilled, of buying your product or service.

    Tip No. 4: Tell all the stories. Every company has stories to tell, and a lot of times they are right under our noses. Talk with as many people as possible. Find the stories that are relatable and change the lens through which people view your company. Once you find these stories, tell them in a variety of ways using different technologies.

    Tip No. 5: Identify your Influencers. And then use them. Maybe they’re your faculty if you work for a university, or the doctors of your hospital, people who sit on your advisory boards or, of course, celebrities (including popular bloggers and vloggers)—anyone who has influence over your target market. Tag them on social media, tweet at them, encourage them to share your posts and tag you back. Create a buzz around your products or services through your influencers and continue to court them all along the way.

    Let’s dig deeper

    Those are some of my overarching takeaways from my experience at CMW. Now, let’s dig a little bit deeper.

    Tip No. 6: Don’t rely on vanity metrics on social media. This seems to be the latest marketing lingo, but it rings true. So what if one of your posts got 357 likes? Did it lead to anyone purchasing, signing up, providing contact info, seeking more info, etc? Building a brand is important, no doubt. But actual engagement is really where it’s at.

    Tip No. 7: Create secret boards on Pinterest for company personas. Pin things you think interest or appeal to these personas, or that just remind you of your personas (colors, textures, activities, quotes, foods, etc). Share the boards with your team and revisit them every so often for inspiration.

     

     

    Tip No. 8: Watch it! Six out of 10 millennials prefer watching a video to reading a newsletter. And we’re all seeking the attention of millennials, right? They are the latest group of consumers, so put some serious thought and effort into making a video!

    Tip No. 9: Caption it! Speaking of videos, did you know 85% of videos on Facebook are watched without sound? Whether it’s that they just don’t care to hear it, or don’t want their coworkers to hear them hearing it, people are foregoing audio. So, make sure your videos are captioned. Not only is it better for SEO and accessibility, but certain words might spark someone’s interest while scrolling through Facebook.

     

    Tip No. 10: Feel it! When writing, start your piece where it gives you goosebumps. Sometimes it’s at “go” and sometimes it’s not. Focus on the kinds of emotions that trigger goosebumps (shock, awe, sympathy and nostalgia) and draw those out in your story.

    As they said in the opening keynote this year, “Marketing is like a race without a finish line.” All marketers want to get there first. But even when you do, you just have to wake up the next morning and do it all over again. So perhaps the best tip is to just get a good night’s sleep. You’re going to need it.

    Pre-Check
    Next up: 17 Things to Know About the 2017 COSE Annual Meeting

    17 Things to Know About the 2017 COSE Annual Meeting

    So, you weren’t able to join in on all of the fun at COSE’s Annual Meeting last week? Not to worry, we have you covered! Here are the 17 most important things you need to know from the March 2 event that was held at the House of Blues downtown.

    First, let’s start with a recap of all the ways COSE is helping your business grow and succeed.

    Share
  • Email
  • Compass Payroll

    1. COSE’s new health benefit option

    On September 1, COSE launched a new health benefit option for small business, the COSE Health and Wellness Trust. This new self-insured health benefits plan gives our members access to preferred rates based on their health experience. So far, COSE has added more than 500 small business groups to the plan and it continues to grow each month, as an alternative to the Affordable Care Act and a preferred opportunity for our members with good health experience.

    2. Job posting resource for small businesses

    A new partnership with CareerBoard will give COSE members access to preferred pricing to post the job opportunities that exist within your company. In addition to preferred pricing, members will have access to Careerboard’s team who can provide expert guidance to ensure your postings are designed to attract the best candidates. You can link to COSE’s job portal here.  

    3. Unique pricing on consumer brands

    Another new partnership with viperks will bring small business owners and their employees special pricing on a large variety of consumer brands, electronics and other purchases. Each COSE member will receive a customized platform with your company logo, brand and other employee specific news and information. This benefit can also be used as a tool for employee rewards and recognition.  For more information, visit www.cose.org/viperks.

    4. Payroll savings benefit

    Late in 2016, COSE entered into a partnership with Compass Payroll providing 15% off the costs of payroll and providing a personalized assistance to support the new ways in which payroll can advance your business.

    5. Small business internship program

    In December, COSE finished a pilot of a small business internship program conducted in conjunction with Youth Opportunities Unlimited and Cuyahoga County Council. A total of 22 students completed projects for 19 small employers focused on social media, sales and market research. This represents COSE’s first foray into a customized small business approach to internships and its success leads us to believe we have an opportunity to do more to provide this kind of support to our members.

    6. YMCA wellness resource

    COSE is finalizing an agreement with the YMCA to create a new wellness resource for small business owners and their employees.  The cost of this program is eligible for funding through grants available through the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation. This program is still being finalized and more information will be provided over the next few weeks.

    7. Energy benefits for your home and business

    A new energy audit and rate reduction program has been created for our members in conjunction with FirstEnergy and the Public Utilities Commission, allowing for free audits for small business owners. The program also supports a national grant from the Department of Energy we received to increase access for small business owners to information and resources to support energy efficiency.

    In addition, we implemented a new Small Business Residential Electricity savings program for business owners and their employees. Contact COSE’s Energy Team at 216-592-2205 or via email at energy@cose.org to learn more.

    8. Advocating for the needs of small business

    Representing the voice of small business is a very important part of our work.  In 2016, we continued to see success with our advocacy efforts working closely with the GCP on three important ballot issues to continue support for the transformation of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District; to avoid an onerous proposed increase to Cleveland’s minimum wage; and to handle the push towards the legalization of marijuana with as much support as possible for rules and approaches that do the least harm to the business community.

    And our work within the GCP to support the success of the Republican National Convention resulted in a terrific showcase for Cleveland and the region. Regardless of your politics, there is no dispute that our work together to put the region in the national spotlight was helpful to the perception of the community we do business in.

    9. A reimagined platform for small business growth resources

    Last week, to coincide with the COSE Annual Meeting, COSE rolled out its new digital content portal, Mind Your Business. This resource gives us the ability to share more information with increased frequency about the best ways for you to grow your small business. It also allows us to publish more of your stories, ideas and expertise.  Check out this new resource for small business owners at www.cose.org/myb.

    10. Business growth through education

    We supported the graduation of additional small business owners and leaders through our work with the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program. And COSE’s flagship Strategic Planning Course graduated another 20 small business owners as the course completed its 37th year of providing the region’s most successful platform for rethinking and reshaping a small business.

    11. Member involvement

    Last year at this time, we shared with you some of the work we were doing with the GCP to increase the ability of small business owners to be involved and engaged in the GCP’s work. During the past year, we have completed that effort and have actively engaged more than 100 small business owners in the key committees and initiatives of the GCP.  

    And now, let’s take a closer look at some of the priorities for 2017.

    12. Partnership with the National Small Business Association

    With a new federal administration, we will be working closely with our partners at the National Small Business Association (NSBA) to ensure the needs of the small business community are being considered in the work of the new administration. The federal picture gets a little more interesting every day and we are actively working with NSBA and other stakeholders to monitor federal action on health care, taxation and regulation.

    13. Working together with the GCP

    GCP has kicked off a strategic planning effort to look ahead at the work of the business community and the region to continue to support growth and investment. COSE leaders and members will work closely with the GCP as the organization develops its strategy in support of the business community for the next several years. Our small business owners are well positioned to be very involved in helping to set those priorities and to ensure the voice of the small business owner is well represented.

    14. New resources for members

    Continuing to bring forward new resources for our members will also be a commitment in 2017. For example, we are in the early stages of creating a new benefit for you to protect against cyber fraud and identity theft and we are looking at options that could exist in the area of business insurance, as well. We also have plans to increase the access you have to the ability to easily meet and connect with each other.

    COSE was proud to also recognize board, staff and volunteer contributions.

    15. Board recognition

    COSE Chairman Michael Stanek praised the dedicated service of the small business owners who serve as the Directors of COSE’s Board. These leaders provide counsel, support and guidance for the work of COSE on behalf of our members. He specifically recognized Arlene Watson of Mobius Grey for her service to the COSE Board. Arlene’s six-year term ended in December, and Stanek recognized her creativity, passion and willingness to ask the right questions that have made her an asset to COSE.

    New Board members were announced at the meeting and included:

    • Brian Alquist, 1Direction, Inc.
    • Stacy Bauer, BauerGriffith, LLC
    • Tim Dimoff, SACS Consulting
    • John Doyle, FASTSIGNS Downtown Cleveland
    • Tim Opsitnick, Jurrinov
    • Damon Piatek, Welke Customs Brokers
    • Vince Salvino, CodeRed
    • Tony Weber, Goldfarb Weber Creative Media
    • Keith Williams, Good Karma Broadcasting
    • Mireille Wozniak-Michalak, Petiole HR
    • Patty Zinn, Micro Systems Management

    16. 2016 Volunteer Service Award and volunteer recognition

    The 2016 Volunteer Service Award was presented to Nevin Bansal of Outreach Promotional Solutions. Stanek credited his high level of engagement, passion and leadership within COSE.

    In addition, Stanek recognized more than forty members that served the organization on four specific volunteer leadership teams in support of COSE’s mission and priorities. These included the COSE Expert Network, COSE Ambassadors, The COSE Small Business Convention/ BizConCLE and the COSE Small Business Internship program. Each of the participating members was recognized for their work on these teams.  

    17. COSE Staff Service Award

    And last but not least, COSE staff member Gina Messina was honored for her 30-year tenure and commitment to COSE and her support of the organization’s small business mission.


    Pre-Check
    Next up: 2010 CIO Symposium Social Media Breakout Session

    2010 CIO Symposium Social Media Breakout Session

    Social media deployment is a challenging issue, not only for the marketing types, but for CIOs and IT Executives too.  At the 2010 NEOSA CIO Symposium, panelists Joe Pulizzi, Kristie Van Auken and Jim Kukral shared their thoughts on how companies can best take advantage of social media opportunities for their firm, but at the same time protect their company.

    Social media deployment is a challenging issue, not only for the marketing types, but for CIOs and IT Executives too.  At the 2010 NEOSA CIO Symposium, panelists Joe Pulizzi, Kristie Van Auken and Jim Kukral shared their thoughts on how companies can best take advantage of social media opportunities for their firm, but at the same time protect their company.

    Listen here.

    Share
  • Email
  • Compass Payroll
    Next up: 2011 CIO Symposium - Innovative Uses of New Technologies

    2011 CIO Symposium - Innovative Uses of New Technologies

    Oftentimes, technology is deployed in the enterprise to help improve efficiencies and cut costs. Both of these results are admirable and certainly worthwhile. However, as technological improvements, enhancements, and new products come faster and faster, it's important to recognize top-line opportunities are also available. 

    Oftentimes, technology is deployed in the enterprise to help improve efficiencies and cut costs. Both of these results are admirable and certainly worthwhile. However, as technological improvements, enhancements, and new products come faster and faster, it's important to recognize top-line opportunities are also available. 

    Share
  • Email
  • Compass Payroll

    This session will feature presentations by CIOs, IT executives and technology companies sharing their real-world experiences innovatively deploying "new" technologies to help grow their businesses. Panelists: John O'Neill Sr., CIO – Molded Fiber Glass, Darin Haines, Group President – MCPc, Chris Anderson, CIO – Schumacher Homes.

    Listen here.


    Pre-Check
    Next up: 2011 CIO Symposium - IT as an Innovator

    2011 CIO Symposium - IT as an Innovator

    Innovate: to introduce something new; make changes in anything established. Technology changes so rapidly, that the status quo is definitely not an option. While "the IT department" is often viewed as a support function of the organization, more and more opportunities are arising for IT to be the innovation leader in the company. From deploying new software to integrating leading edge hardware to unleashing creativity, IT can lead the way to a robust innovation environment. 

    Innovate: to introduce something new; make changes in anything established. Technology changes so rapidly, that the status quo is definitely not an option. While "the IT department" is often viewed as a support function of the organization, more and more opportunities are arising for IT to be the innovation leader in the company. From deploying new software to integrating leading edge hardware to unleashing creativity, IT can lead the way to a robust innovation environment. 

    Share
  • Email
  • Compass Payroll

    Our panelists will share their insight into how they successfully changed the mindset about IT at their company and how they've led their organization to be truly innovative. Panelists: Jim Sage, CIO-The University of Akron, Doug Wenger, CIO-Omnova Solutions, Richard Hutchinson, Progressive Insurance. 

    Listen here.


    Pre-Check
    Next up: 2011 CIO Symposium - Social Media for the Enterprise

    2011 CIO Symposium - Social Media for the Enterprise

    The landscape for social media and social networking is changing as quickly as any technology currently in the market. Facebook (for business), Twitter, LinkedIn, and other tools can be used for communication and collaboration, not just with your own team, and not just with your clients, but among your clients too. 

    The landscape for social media and social networking is changing as quickly as any technology currently in the market. Facebook (for business), Twitter, LinkedIn, and other tools can be used for communication and collaboration, not just with your own team, and not just with your clients, but among your clients too. 

    Share
  • Email
  • Compass Payroll

    Learn how your peers are leveraging social networking tools to build communities of staff and clients to get better connected, grow your company and tap directly in to your client's mindset. Panelists: Lance Hill, CEO – Within3, Jim Despres, Regional Manager – Google Enterprise, Tim Zonca, Director of Product Marketing, Jive Software.

    Listen here.

    Pre-Check