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  • Six steps to better B2B animated video | Grist
    can best integrate with other marketing assets Is there consistent messaging that needs to come through Will a dedicated landing page be needed What other existing content can be used to promote it Will you need different versions for different markets Environmental factors can influence the format too If your visuals are only given meaning by an accompanying voiceover for example your message is unlikely to cut through in a busy exhibition hall or a quiet open plan office In this instance providing a transcript will make life easier for the viewer and will also boost on page SEO 3 Keep it simple One of the main attractions of animated video is its ability to simplify complex concepts It can be tempting to try and shoehorn every key point about a product or service into the script but less is most definitely more in this respect You will turn off viewers if your video is overly long and detailed so concentrate on delivering two or three key messages at most Reading the script aloud should help to highlight superfluous or difficult words and phrases You might also consider whether the story would be better told in separate instalments A series of videos answering specific questions for your audience will be more digestible and will also boost SEO potential with the right long tail keyword headlines 4 Be the brand B2B marketers correctly see animated video as a way to push the creative boundaries but it s important that the style you choose reflects your brand and values and talks in a language your audience will respond to If your brand regularly uses humour and fun characters then a cartoony style may be just the ticket For others a more formal graphic style might be more appropriate Your agency should be able to present a range of relevant style concepts based on an understanding of your brand and the brief 5 Make it count What do you want viewers to do after watching the video Download an e book Arrange a demo Pick up the phone With many B2B videos you ll never know as the viewer is left hanging Including a strong and simple call to action is essential especially if the video is seen in isolation or out of context For example YouTube hosted videos often autoplay the next video which could easily be a competitor so you will want a definite pay off from the interest created Along with the number of views a specific call to action will give you a useful measure of effectiveness in moving your audience along the business development pipeline 6 Give it some air Many marketers pour their heart and soul into creating an animated masterpiece stick it on the website and wonder why their shiny new video hasn t gone viral Not forgetting that quality of audience is what counts in B2B would you prefer 10 000 random views or 100 qualified enquiries you will need to fan the flames to

    Original URL path: http://www.gristonline.com/insight/blog/2015/09/03/6-steps-better-b2b-animated-video/ (2016-02-15)
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  • The content preferences of risk managers (survey) | Grist
    as a surprise The ability to compare insurance policies claims etc against similar companies is of growing interest to risk managers as they are increasingly required by internal stakeholders to demonstrate efficiency of spend and an analytical approach to risk management and transfer Their desire for best practice case studies stems from a similar motive to ensure they are not missing out on any practices that could improve their company s risk profile Press the flesh Risk managers desire to know what their peers are doing was also apparent when we asked them where they found information that helps them do their job and keep abreast of industry trends While e newsletters 67 and research reports and white papers 56 were popular risk managers top two choices were 89 interaction with other risk managers 77 face to face events If you organise insurance events or participate in industry events such as Airmic FERMA RIMS etc then think about how you can create the strongest possible relationship between these events and your content marketing and how they can feed into the other Don t just pay for an exhibition booth and think that s job done Sweat the opportunities that events present in particular the heavy concentration of risk managers Become an enabler Insurers and brokers have a great opportunity to facilitate communication between risk managers enabling them to acquire a richer and broader sense of insurance policies pricing claims and general risk management issues and practices This could be done through conducting several risk manager profile interviews smaller case studies vox pop videos or in depth benchmarking reports But why would I want to do that you might be wondering If you produce content that genuinely benefits clients and prospects they will appreciate it and respect you for doing something different which puts them first They will also associate you with genuine insight and useful practical advice rather than the same old sales puff dressed up as thought leadership Make the effort Granted this might sound easier said than done Getting your clients and other risk managers to contribute to your content marketing is often difficult Any input a risk manager provides might have to go through their company s Kafka esque comms department arriving out the other end as an insipid list of platitudes And sometimes your own client facing colleagues won t want to provide access to their clients But by planning far in advance and engaging with lots of risk managers on a collaborative longer term basis you can gradually cultivate a pool of risk managers whose contributions can provide profiles and case studies as well as feeding news stories and feature articles While some risk managers hate being interviewed there are many believe it or not who do it regularly and find it useful so take advantage of them Your readers will appreciate it Learn more If you d like to learn more about our research see what best practice content marketing looks like and understandhow

    Original URL path: http://www.gristonline.com/insight/blog/2015/06/04/what-risk-managers-really-care-about/ (2016-02-15)
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  • How the right content can shorten the B2B buyer journey | Grist
    and relevant coverage of the market Think topical frequent authentic and interactive Research By this stage in the buying cycle the buyer has recognised a need and is actively researching potential solutions They are looking for content around a particular service line whether to help them solve a problem find out what their peers are doing or arm themselves with information that can help them get buy in from other senior decision makers Case studies are the most obvious form of proof yet these are conspicuously absent from some firms websites or lack the detail that can bring them to life Professional services firms would do well to look at the compelling multi format client stories produced by personal injury lawyers such as Irwin Mitchell Guides research and other thought leadership that speaks to the client s fears and pain points are also highly effective The big four accounting firms and larger law firms are generally strong here particularly in the larger cross jurisdictional areas see for example PwC s CEO surveys and sector insights but you can still own a niche if it is rigorous practical insightful and visual Developing a body of bespoke content incorporating the most appropriate long tail keywords for your specialist areas will enable you to punch above your weight in attracting consistent relevant traffic Comparison By now the buyer has identified a solution and is looking for potential providers Buyers comparing solutions also want content that addresses their business problems But they differ from those at an earlier stage in the process in that they have decided what solution they require and wish to know whether your firm should be on the shortlist The comparison or evaluation stage may be the first time in the process that a particular buyer is identified and can be actively engaged by your firm so take the opportunity to tailor content to their individual needs where possible Specific service related information works well here such as overviews of how you can help partner biographies and checklists Although the information is about the firm it should still be client focused partner biographies should include recent cases and work undertaken for instance Forward thinking firms are always looking to improve in this area often using video to show more of the firm s personality Video is increasingly popular with B2B buyers allows prospects to familiarise themselves with key members of your team and gives a stronger impression of what it might be like to work with you Video comments and testimonials from clients are equally powerful Action The buyer has drawn up a shortlist of firms and committed to take action You are at the final hurdle it s up to you to help them choose your firm and to reassure them that they have made the right decision Think through the process from their point of view and be proactive in providing useful information that will enable them to picture a bright future This might include more detailed contact

    Original URL path: http://www.gristonline.com/insight/blog/2015/03/19/how-right-content-can-shorten-b2b-buyer-journey/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Amplify B2B content distribution with owned media | Grist
    pages often appear above your own website on the Google results page you are entitled to monitor these for errors of fact and to ask for updates and changes The app Not necessarily a replication of all that lives on a native website the smartphone app should offer something different something specific For example it could be the destination for all video explainers perfect snacking material for the mobile users and an excellent way to repurpose existing content The print publication Remember this is not just a digital world Print continues to offer its own benefits It provides impact longevity and a physical presence A monthly or quarterly client magazine in reception or delivered to the desk of a well targeted client is there to be browsed It s portable arguably the mobile first media technology and it underscores brand identity It is also the original source of all that high quality content ready to be unbundled repurposed and amplified The individual Not that you own your employees of course but their contributions across social networks where the personal and the professional persona meets and at client meetings and conferences can prove critical in amplifying the company message and adding individual credibility What you offer Thought leadership A signal of credibility within an industry sector thought leadership pieces sometimes simply referred to as opinion or analysis pieces should explain and contextualise complexity in simple terms This is not about showing off knowledge of industry specific terminology Rather it is a demonstration of a thorough understanding of client needs and the ability to explain analyse interpret and offer valuable insight Read more about our 8 stage process to plan effective thought leadership programmes Company information The About us page may lack glamour compared to other content marketing strands but it is one of the most visited pages among key influencers analysts journalists potential investors future employees and perhaps most significantly those ready to convert from prospect to client So make sure you get it right By all means use it to convey the organisation s values and its mission but first ensure readers understand what you do in practical terms and in the context of the broader industry Client stories The case studies demonstrate an organisation s ability to answer a practical need and allow it to bask in the reflected light of companies with household name recognition The case study told in narrative form reassures a would be client that you have understanding credibility and experience Product and services information As with the About us page this is baseline content there for when customers and would be customers need it So make sure it s up to date written simply and provides all the points of comparison an informed reader likely to be looking at your competitors sites too would expect Explainers In every industry there are trends concepts services and technologies that need illumination Don t assume that a client understands it all as Google knows your clients are

    Original URL path: http://www.gristonline.com/insight/blog/2015/12/03/amplify-b2b-content-distribution-owned-media/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Amplify B2B content distribution with shared media | Grist
    on Pulse groups and SlideShare all provide opportunities to host and share content that has intrinsic value extends reach and demonstrates credibility knowledge suitability and experience Paid As with other social networks the power of LinkedIn is its scale It currently has over 300 million members worldwide and its platform allows advertisers to filter by a number of categories job title industry sector geography and company size among them At that scale if the targeting is correct and the content promoted is compelling LinkedIn Ads can prove highly effective Twitter Owned and earned Twitter s biggest weakness is also its biggest strength namely that its active user base 316 million people per month is dominated by journalists policy makers and other public figures If this is a downside it is a downside you can use to your advantage if you are in the business of attracting key influencers To confirm you are in the business of attracting key influencers Paid Again Twitter s scale allows for advertising campaigns aimed at a precise and well defined audience For the B2B marketer targeting by username keywords and interest areas should prove particularly valuable Facebook Owned and earned With 1 49bn unique users a month Facebook is the dominant force of social networking To consider that none of these users have a B2B interest is mathematically implausible while case studies from companies such as Maersk Line the archetypal B2B organisation is evidence that Facebook is not just for friends and family Pages on Facebook are akin to company pages on LinkedIn Paid As an advertising platform Facebook has all the inherent advantages of the other social networks and two bespoke filters that may be of particular interest these are Behaviours targeting based for example on shopping habits phone usage or likelihood of buying a new car in the near future and Connections allowing you to determine whether you want to target everyone or narrow it down to only people who have liked your page or RSVP d for your event in the past 30 days for example Other media channels Although social networks dominate don t forget other social media including wikis forums and video sharing services YouTube looms largest in that latter category and is a perfect tool when thinking about unbundling repurposing and amplifying existing content Why Because short sharp and focused videos that answer a client need and match search queries will attract existing and new clients alike YouTube is not only the world s largest video sharing platform it is also the world s second largest search engine Benefits for SEO Search engines bring me to the final benefit that shared media promises Ever since the 2011 Panda update to the Google algorithm social shares have played an important part in search engine optimisation Working much like in bound links from other websites shared links via social networks help improve the authority of a site This is in turn will help improve search engine rankings Next time O for

    Original URL path: http://www.gristonline.com/insight/blog/2015/11/13/Amplify-b2b-content-distribution-with-shared-media/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Smart content creation means digital-first | Grist
    is about delivering the right information for sure but it s also about delivering it in the right form in front of the right people and at the right time In other words it s about format distribution timing and conversion Smart commissioning Smart commissioning requires malleable content capable of being hammered into a variety of formats without breaking Some of those formats social media and newsletters for example double as distribution channels All need to be matched to a desired outcome engagement with a specific call to action Let s consider some examples of smart commissioning in practice 1 A cover feature for client magazine The commissioning brief should include Two or more box outs that will work as dedicated LinkedIn long form posts A core graphic that can be shared on Twitter An abridged version think executive summary of the central body copy that will work to drive click throughs from a client newsletter 2 An interview profile The commissioning brief should include A series of 8 10 quick fire questions and answers that would make a light and shareable blog post to be promoted on Facebook and LinkedIn A series of questions the interviewee is obliged to answer in 140 characters or less Ready made for Twitter in other words 3 A research report A single piece of qualitative and quantitative research will throw up findings insights and observations that can be sliced and diced by subject and by audience often across both axes So don t just think one long report Think modules Multiple LinkedIn long form posts A placed thought leadership article SlideShare presentation Shareable infographics In each of the above examples a commissioned writer will be asked to produce three tweet lines that can be used to push the content out on to appropriate

    Original URL path: http://www.gristonline.com/insight/blog/2015/09/21/smart-content-commissioning-means-digital-first/ (2016-02-15)
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  • The four essentials of effective B2B social media strategy | Grist
    and the online behaviour of clients and prospects What are your business goals for the year and how can social media help move the needle Where are clients and prospects talking about the issues you could help them with and what are they saying Who are the key influencers in your target markets and where do they live What does the social media strategy of your competitors look like Marketing departments without clear answers to these questions are shooting in the dark wasting hard earned credibility with management looking for results and direction Step 2 Plan Although social listening is a time consuming exercise that requires internal knowledge social media expertise and resources it lays the foundations for an effective social media strategy This should detail proposed target platforms and activity schedule and KPIs With marketing resources stretched in the current economic climate it is critical to focus on a core activity or small group of activities and do them well Once the concept has been proven you can roll it out on a wider basis A core component of the planning phase should involve setting an in house social media policy and the recruitment of internal advocates Focusing more on the positive than the negative is key to making this work Showing management what best practice looks like can be much more effective than correcting inconsistencies when they happen You may also want to consider in house training not forgetting this can focus on strategy for marketing leaders as well as implementation for the firm in general Step 3 Activate Now comes the exciting phase when plans are put into action Activation can take many forms from the management of a bespoke LinkedIn group through to the creation of a client focused blog from a dedicated Twitter stream highlighting topical issues through to a vibrant Facebook community aimed at graduate recruitment Your planning exercise should prioritise the biggest opportunity but ensuring success on any platform requires a regular stream of quality content Effective social media content should provide value for the reader clients will engage with you if you get under their skin and address their most pressing problems The Big Four accountancy and audit firms are good examples They integrate quality content research white papers briefings and events write ups within their editorial calendars ensuring they gain maximum visibility for all their thought leadership through social media exposure Step 4 Measure Setting KPIs in the planning phase allows firms to measure effectively and demonstrate a return on investment It also enables the constant process of refinement and adjustment necessary to stay ahead of the pack For firms that get it right there are real benefits According to HubSpot B2B firms with an active blog generate an average of 67 more leads than those that don t And firms that use Twitter generate twice as many leads as those that don t reveals Social Media Examiner But focusing on lead generation alone misses a fundamental opportunity with social media

    Original URL path: http://www.gristonline.com/insight/blog/2015/09/17/four-essentials-effective-b2b-social-media-strateg/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Measuring content marketing ROI with Google Analytics | Grist
    for you and direct your marketing campaigns accordingly Or if it is a source you know should be performing better look at what could be going wrong 3 Most viewed pages Found in the behaviour section of Google Analytics site content data shows you which pages have had the most views This is an obvious place to discover what type of content or topic is pulling in the most interest both short and long term and also the types of headlines that get attention You can also prioritise these pages to ensure they include the key elements you d like visitors to see and act upon Be wary of red herrings though Old or obscure pages can sometimes appear high in the rankings due to a legacy referral link or misleading headline so dig deeper to see if their popularity is also backed by time spent on the page 4 Bounce rate The bounce rate measures the number of visitors that leave your website after only visiting the page they arrived on A high bounce rate can indicate that visitors are not finding what they are expecting to so it s worth investigating which pages are incurring higher bounce rates and checking which sources they are coming from For instance it may be that organic keyword searches for specific terms are bringing in the wrong audience from search engines If this is the case you can review the terms being used across your website to make sure they suitably represent your services If a keyword with a high bounce rate is one you are happy to be associated with look at the quality of the content and calls to action CTAs on that page Remember though that if the page in question delivers exactly the right information quickly such as a key phone number a high bounce rate may not be a negative indicator Tracking calls to action CTAs CTAs can be tracked using event goals There are five types of goals that can be measured with Google Analytics see image below These goal types can be used to measure your CTAs and other key performance indicators KPIs For more information on creating goals on Google Analytics visit the Google Analytics help page 5 Contact forms Contact us Quick enquiry Call back request Contact forms offer the viewer a direct way to get in touch with the company and represent a clear buying signal Potential questions relating to these goals could include Does the number of enquiries increase during particular campaigns Do enquiries happen more often from particular content pages What types of enquiries are being made Setting up event goals for these contact forms and asking these questions will give you greater insight into how your marketing strategy is performing To track how users navigated your website before reaching a goal you will need to look at the Goal Flow report 6 Downloads Videos podcasts pdfs As another clear sign of engagement it pays to keep track of which

    Original URL path: http://www.gristonline.com/insight/blog/2015/08/11/basics-measuring-b2b-content-marketing-roi-google-/ (2016-02-15)
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