Content Runner has reached out to a number experts in the industry to assist with our 2014 Content Marketing Q&A Blog Series. We really appreciate the tremendous response that we’ve received so far and when we are done with the entire series we are going to compile the results into a white paper and make it available free of charge for anyone that wants to download. We have previously published the following interviews:
- Part 1 with Stoney DeGuyter
- Part 2 with Phil Buckley
- Part 3 with Greg Gifford
- Part 4 with Jessica Bosari
- Part 5 with Rob Garner
- Part 6 with Dayna Moon
- Part 7 with Mike Huber
Frans Van Hulle is a “serial” entrepreneur with more than 15 years of experience in the online marketing industry. He has founded several successful companies, including lead gen powerhouse ReviMedia and boutique pet insurance provider PetPremium.
Company URL: www.revimedia.com
1. How has content marketing evolved in the last 2 years? What changes are you seeing in the services you deliver for your clients?
- Google Updates have changed the game for most marketers in the sense that if you want your content to rank and to get linked, it needs to be informative and high-quality. There has been so much focus specifically on quality because content is now such a vital component in successful SEO. In that sense, content is even more king than before.
- Distribution of content has become much easier thanks to social media. It also makes it easier to decide what type of messaging is most appropriate for which target audience. Social media has also increased the sheer volume which can be presented to end-users, creating a hunger for more and more content.
- Content writing has shifted from traditional written formats to a more visual layout, including videos, infographics, webinars and graphics in addition to eBooks, blogs and whitepapers.
2. Where will content marketing be in 2018, what are you top 3 predictions?
- Mobile Content- By 2018, 90% of content will be consumed on mobile devices, which will have a great impact on how content is displayed across different devices. The approach towards digital display of content will become more seamless, meaning that it won’t matter which device you’re using to access content.
- Relying on Analytics- With so many different distribution channels available, it will become even more important for companies to measure metrics—whether it’s the number of downloads or leads, traffic or order volume. Since content has become so central, users are flooded with new information every second. In order to produce content that sticks, it’s important to figure out what users really want to see and read.
- Dynamic Content- Since most consumers will access content on mobile devices, content will become much more interactive and visual in order to attract end-users to click, like and share. This means that we’ll see a steady rise of video-related content and dynamic screen experiences.
3. What are you favorite tools you use for producing content? What do you primarily use them for?
We work primarily with WordPress to create websites and blog posts. We also like to use visual and graphic creation tools that allow you to convey content with the help of graphics, such as canva.com, which allows you to create your own online posters, cover photos, or social media graphics. Info.gram is another great tool that also allows you to create simple infographics. Lastly, Evernote is great for note-taking, organizing content and providing inspiration.
4. What platforms offer the biggest opportunities for content marketing outside of Google? What’s a hidden gem that other marketers aren’t talking about where you’ve found success?
For one of our brands, PetPremium, Pinterest has proven to be a great platform. It allows you to easily acquire new followers and lends itself as a great tool for content marketing because you are still able to focus on specific keywords. Because of the nature of Pinterest, it is actually easy to spread your content across the platform and attract website visitors.
5. How do you gauge the effectiveness of the content you produce for yourself as well as for you clients? How do you measure the ROI on content?
ReviMedia is not that focused on ROI when it comes to content. However, we are trying to lend thought leadership to industry peers and to build brand awareness through high-quality content, all stuff that is hard to measure. One of the ways we measure our effectiveness with the content and social media is Klout, which gives a good indication of our authority and impact.
6. Do you provide client’s guidance on Content Strategy? If so what are 2 critical things most companies forget about when they create their strategy?
We are not giving guidance to clients, all our content marketing is related to our own properties. However, if I would have to give two critical things to think about in defining and executing content:
- Quality above quantity. Better to create 20 great content pieces, than 100 average, low value ones. Focus on creating master pieces
- Make a realistic content plan. Nothing more frustrating than defining a great content plan, to find out you are just not able to meet the objectives you set.
7. Which of the Google updates has impacted you the most and changed the way you create and market content?
The update that had the most impact was Penguin. The update that had the second-most impact was Hummingbird, although the effects of Hummingbird for us are not clear yet. Penguin profoundly influenced a lot of marketers to change their approach to content marketing because it had such an impact on SEO. Penguin made black hat practices punishable and therefore forced marketers to focus on quality content much more. Hummingbird looks at the context of content and user search intent and places more emphasis on educational and informational value.
8. What social platforms work the best for you to promote your content? What’s one piece of insight that many people don’t know when it comes to social promotion?
Facebook and Twitter lend themselves in a great way because of the volume of content you can publish. Although we have not found “the business case” in this model yet, we’ll keep investing in this for branding and building authority purposes. For PetPremium, Pinterest has proven most useful because of the ability to focus on keywords.