Tag Archives: marketing

7 Content Marketing Mistakes You Can’t Afford to Make in 2017

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Many of us are still in the leaf-turning phase of the new year, eager to identify and implement key areas for personal and professional change. Perhaps some of your own resolutions include improvements to your company’s content marketing endeavors. And if not—well, maybe they should.

There is never a bad time to revise your content marketing mechanisms—to be more strategic about consumer outreach, relationship-building, and thought leadership. Getting more serious about content marketing can yield many benefits, and the good news is, making constructive content marketing resolutions doesn’t have to be anything too nebulous or complex: It can be as simple as learning from yesterday’s mistakes.

With that in mind, we’ve got some suggestions for you: Some content marketing mistakes we’ve seen before, and ones we encourage you to learn from as you move forward toward bigger and better content endeavors.

Mistake #1: Blogging Inconsistently

Anyone can resolve to start a blog. Even writing that first post can seem pretty easy. Maintaining robust and regular blog content, though, is another matter altogether—yet it requires consistency for you to keep your audience engaged, increase our search engine exposure, and develop your brand’s authority.

Mistake #2: Making Grade-School Grammar Mistakes

Be honest: Have you ever posted a company blog that interchanges your with you’re, or that mixes up their and there? These aren’t just little errors. They make your business look shoddy and unprofessional. Make sure you have a skilled editor proof your content before it’s posted.

Mistake #3: Overlooking SEO Opportunities

You don’t have to be a technical whiz to fill in the meta description for your company blog post (WordPress and other content management systems will offer you a place to do this), or to include a few judicious keywords in your posts and your titles. Don’t forfeit these opportunities to tell the search engine what your content is all about.

Mistake #4: Missing Email Marketing Opportunities

Remember that when you post a really good entry to your blog, it’s something you ought to be promoting everywhere—and that includes in emails. Your email marketing list is a great place to turn when you want to get attention for a new piece of content. Spread the word, and make sure you’re conveying real value to your readers.

Mistake #5: Misusing Social Media

Your Facebook and Twitter accounts aren’t just for promoting your latest products or sales, though that’s certainly a good use for them. You should also be using them to spread meaningful, value-adding content, though—not just your company blog posts, but curated content from other industry resources, too.

Mistake #6: Poorly Formatting Your Content

Are your company blog posts difficult to read—or difficult to skim? Sub-headings, lists, and bullet points can really make life easier for your readers. If nothing else, shorter paragraphs are generally recommended.

Mistake #7: Not Offering Value Through Your Content

It ultimately comes down to what you’re writing about: You should be developing content that truly makes life better for your readers, answering their questions and posing actionable solutions to their problems. Otherwise, why would they bother?

Content development happens to be our strong suit—so if you’re looking for a hand in making big content improvements in 2017, give Grammar Chic a call at 803-831-7444, or visit us at www.grammarchic.net.

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Filed under Brand Management, Content Marketing, Content Writing, Email Writing, Social Media

How to Prepare Your Business for Cyber Monday

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Thanksgiving, Hanukah, Christmas, New Year’s—for most of us, these and perhaps a few others are the main holidays to focus on at year’s end. If you’re a business owner, though—and an ecommerce merchant in particular—then there’s one other day you should mark on your calendar: Cyber Monday. The Monday following Thanksgiving is one of the biggest shopping days of the year, a day on which many of your regular customers and clients are going to be in a holiday shopping state of mind. You ignore this day at your own detriment; hosting some Cyber Monday specials and promotions is a great way to seize some of this traffic and generate some real business.

But there’s not that much time until Cyber Monday gets here—so if you haven’t planned your promotions, the time to do so is now!

Allow us to offer a few pointers.

Getting Ready for Cyber Monday

You need to start building buzz now. Trust us: Your audience is already thinking about the holiday season, and many brick and mortar stores have had their holiday promotions and displays running for several weeks already. You’ve got to compete with that, so set the details of your Cyber Monday promotions and start hyping them on social media and on your website soon.

Make sure customers can browse your features products/services now. Long before Cyber Monday arrives, many shoppers will be doing online research to scout out the best deals. Whatever items you are going to promote, make sure your website showcases them well, including a note about any Cyber Monday discounts or specials.

Begin the process of creating content. You’ll want to promote your Cyber Monday offerings with images, ads, blog posts, and more—and you don’t want to have to create all of that content at the very last minute. Start compiling some of it today.

Be meticulous and thoughtful in creating ad copy. On Cyber Monday (and really for the entire holiday season), your audience is going to be inundated with sales copy. Yours must stand out. Brainstorm email marketing subject lines, blog headings, and effective tweets now. Engage a writing team, like Grammar Chic, to help make your words memorable.

Tap into your existing customer base. Cyber Monday can be a good season for new customer acquisition, but it can frankly be an even better time to re-engage with previous customers. Make sure your Cyber Monday marketing efforts include some emails targeted to the folks who are already on your mailing list.

It won’t be long before the big day is here—so are you prepared? If not, get with Grammar Chic today to find out how we can help you. Reach out at 803-831-7444 or www.grammarchic.net.

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Tweet Your Way to Better Business: The Secret of the Hashtags, Part II

Last week we discussed Twitter—specifically, Twitter as a tool for business promotion and brand management, not Twitter as a platform to ramble on and on about whatever you ate for breakfast this morning. Remember: Twitter is what you make of it. Approach it without vision or discretion and it’s only going to generate useless noise. Approach it with foresight, however, and you can really use it to your company’s advantage.

And hashtags are a great way to do that. Last week’s blog was all about selectively and effectively using pre-existing hashtags, and, if you’ll remember, my comments emphasized the importance of discretion—of using only the hashtags that really fit your business and its goals. But what do you do when there isn’t a hashtag that fits the bill? Simple: You make your own.

Easy, right? Well, yes and no. Of course, the simple act of creating a hashtag is a breeze—you just put the # character in front of a word. If you can’t handle that, I might suggest that Twitter isn’t for you. But creating a hashtag that will actually benefit your company and function as a useful brand management tool? That takes just a bit more finesse.

The first step is picking the word itself. Remember, the hashtag you use needs to be something that fits with your business. It also needs to be something that other Twitterers can easily use in their tweets. The whole point of this is to generate a sense of community, after all, by creating a memorable “trend” on Twitter—so make sure your hashtag is something that’s pretty easy to spell. You might also want to make it short. As a Twitter user, I will personally attest to the fact that, when a hashtag eats up half of your 140 characters, it’s usually way more frustrating than it’s worth.

Once you’ve settled on a good hashtag, just start using the thing. Attach it to your tweets, but remember to make those tweets pertinent. Don’t throw around your hashtags like spam; say something substantive in each tweet. And make it worth your followers’ while to use the hashtag themselves. For instance, let’s say you own a lawn equipment store. You could ask your followers what their favorite lawn maintenance activity is, and have them tag their answers with #lawnfavorites. Maybe offer a door prize of some sort for one lucky participant?

The idea, of course, is that using hashtags like this will help you cultivate a sort of community among your Twitter-savvy clients—keeping your name in front of them and keeping them interested in what you’re doing. As always, I should also note that Grammar Chic, Inc. offers superior services in brand management campaigns just like this, and that investing in said services could ultimately help your business convert Twitter followers into sales prospects.

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