Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Is Your Content Too Focused?

Is Your Content Too Focused?

Any SEO strategy hinges on offering relevant, valuable information. But that might not mean what you think it does.

According to the Todaymade blog, web content marketers gravitate toward discussions of their core businesses. "But the challenge that we all have in marketing is moving past those spheres of immediate influence to some of the more expanded topics that our customers really care about," they note.

To illustrate their point, Todaymade uses the example of Joe, an independent retailer who sells shoes and athletic goods. He has a competent website that lists his products and includes friendly touches like photos of his employees.

Customers rarely use the site to make purchases, however, and Joe only keeps it going because businesses today are supposed to have websites. He has a Facebook page for the same reason, and receives only a smattering of likes when he posts new content every week or so. As far as Joe can tell, his online presence has a negligible impact on sales.

"But what would happen if Joe started expanding his core?" Todaymade asks. The key to increased response for Joe, they say, is to stop talking exclusively about his products, and start talking about how his products are used. He could, for instance, blog about:

  • Favorite running spots
  • Current running and training techniques
  • Options for monitoring heart rates and measuring distances
And his social media strategy could include:
  • Mapping out jogging paths
  • Organizing group runs
  • Supporting athletic events
By expanding beyond his content core, Joe could create a thriving online presence that generates trust and—importantly—ranks well.

Conclusion: Put yourself in their shoes. When you produce content, instead of just talking about your products, expand your message to express how your readers are using them in the real world.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving and safe travels to everyone over the holidays

If you would like to talk more about how to effectively develop your email programs to help build your business grow, please give me a call at 440-519-1500 or e-mail me at

X2 Media can help you target your content and get your message to the audience in a way that it is not only seen and heard, but remembered.

Until next month….remember, “you don’t get a 2nd chance to make a 1st impression”. Always make it a good one! From X2Media I would like to thank you for your time.

John E. Hornyak 

X2Media, LLC

Five Things B2B Website Content Needs to Do to Engage Visitors

Five Things B2B Website Content Needs to Do to Engage Visitors

This month, we take a closer look at creating magnetic site content. In a post at the Marketing Interactions blog, Ardath Albee addresses the increased importance of B2B company websites—as more and more prospects go online to research products and services. How can you ensure your site sparks visitor interest and stands out from the crowd?

Albee suggests five things your site content needs to do to quickly engage prospects:

Immediately orient visitors. 

"You'd better make sure people can figure out what your company does, why they're staring at your webpage and what they should do/get—and do it fast," Albee advises. Dump the jargon and get to your core information.

Speak directly to them.

Tell them what's in it for them. "Make sure your content speaks directly to them about stuff they care about—high-priority stuff," she says.

Provide 'interest pathways' for them. 

To accommodate a range of prospects, offer unique pathways that appeal to individual interests—such as, "if X is your priority, then click here for all the resources you need about that topic."

Answer their questions. 

Access your own site from the Internet, navigate it and see what questions come to mind as a visitor. This exercise can help you identify information gaps.

Get them to do something. 

"What event can they sign up for that relates to their interests?" Albee asks. "What white paper or eBook can they download? Do you have related blog posts they might be interested in?" Invite them to follow you on Twitter. 

Conclusion: Work from the outside in. To build a better B2B website, mold your content from and to your prospects' point of view.

Four Tips for Mobile Email Design

Four Tips for Mobile Email Design

Designing emails that look great no matter where they're read can be quite the challenge," writes Justine Jordan at the Litmus blog. "As more people read email on mobile devices, chances are your recipient might view your email ... on a mobile phone as well as on their desktop." 

To help you create mobile-friendly campaigns, the Litmus team designed an in-depth infographic to highlight a number of do's and don'ts. Here are a few key takeaways:

Use a large font size. Mobile readability requires larger fonts than those used in email for desktop consumption. An iPhone's iOS, the Litmus team note, will automatically adjust any font to its minimum 13-point standard. And they recommend an even-larger 14-point minimum for body copy, along with a 22-point minimum for headlines.

Keep things simple. A streamlined screen makes it easy for a mobile user to do what he or she wants to do. So resist the urge to load your screen with complex navigation bars, social sharing buttons and calls to action. Also consider single-column layouts that de-clutter small screens.

Choose palettes carefully. White text on a gray background might look elegant on a desktop monitor; but in the battery-drained, low-contrast atmosphere of a mobile device, it could be virtually impossible to read.

Consider ergonomics. Since most of us operate smartphones with a single hand, place important navigation and social sharing buttons within easy reach of a user's thumb.

Conclusion: Watch how you say it. By observing how your email messages render on a range of screens, you can make it easier for subscribers to engage with you—even when they're waiting in line at the bank.