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    1. Snackable Content: Ideal for Today’s Lifestyle

      Snackable Content: Ideal for Today’s Lifestyle

      Snackable content refers to short, easily digestible content that caters to a modern audience’s consumption tendencies. A reader can absorb a quick-hitting, snackable piece of content more easily than a long-form blog post. It’s easier for them to share across their own networks and increases the likelihood of virality.

      Because reader attention span has diminished to 12 seconds as of 2016, bite-size content items have emerged as one of marketers’ best means to stand out from their competition. 

      Another issue for the busy reader is their increasing consumption on the go. Atomic Reach explains this challenge and suggests ‘quick content’ is a great solution:

      The modern Internet user tends to spend a lot of time on their handheld devices, particularly smartphones, to consume content. The limited real estate on smartphones makes it challenging and, at times, discouraging, for the consumer to engage with lengthy content. However, the limited space on a smartphone doesn’t pose any disadvantage to the user while engaging with bite-size content. 

      Infographics have become a familiar snackable content format. A key trait of successful snackable content is rich, eye-catching media. With all major networks now providing means for in-app video viewing, marketers can take advantage of video as an effective avenue for snackable engagement as well.

      For more on developing effective bite-size content, check out Atomic Reach’s original article below.


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    2. Artificial Intelligence: Friend, Not Foe

      Artificial Intelligence: Friend, Not Foe

      After decades of digital platforms indexing data across industries, artificial intelligence (AI) is beginning to use this data to improve insights and efficiency for businesses. AI is already leveraged in day-to-day consumer uses such as navigation tools and newsfeeds. Now businesses are increasingly tapping into AI’s full potential.

      Suhash Talwar of Atomic Reach explains the impact of artificial intelligence on content marketing:

      According to Gartner’s predictions, 20 percent of all business content will be machine-generated by 2018. By analyzing the search history and emails of customers and prospects, AI-driven content writing software can generate newsletters and other relevant content for companies, thereby saving a lot of time. 

      Marketers can expect to see mundane creation tasks eliminated or mitigated. By understanding consumption trends, AI allows marketers to hone in on audience interests with laser focus. This is a powerful tool in the battle against writers creating for the sake of creation, which often results in content that is uninteresting to the audience and unsuccessful for its creator.

      Marketers that take pride in their creative intuition shouldn’t be too concerned. AI merely creates another tool for producing, and intelligently promoting content their audience will love. 

      Check our Talwar’s original article below to learn about the impact AI is having across the globe.


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    3. Content That Leads to Leads Explained

      Content That Leads to Leads Explained

      Some marketers use tools that attribute revenue directly to content marketing. Others are not so lucky. They have to track correlating metrics to determine whether or not their content is driving revenue. Both groups however, can credit at least one of four key characteristics of their content and community for generating leads and ultimately, revenue.

      Trust Building

      If your audience were to land on one of your content channels to find little or no content, they will likely assume your business is dead or dying. Alternatively, having viewers land on a site lush with content and information builds confidence, brand trust, and ultimately, leads.  81% of businesses reported that their company blog is useful to critical for their business.

      Community Building

      Having a strong, growing community can be huge asset to lead generation efforts. If you’ve done your research, you will have a good understanding of your audience and the type of content they’re seeking. This unique group will eventually come to rely on your content as the trusted resource for all things related to your product, service, or industry, and begin to recruit other advocates as members of your following.

       Exposure Building

      The best content you create will have legs. Among other redeeming benefits of great content, it tends to have much greater shareability. This is one of the most popular benchmarks to look at when determining quality of content. If your content has separated itself from the pack, then congratulations, your idea has been validated, your content has “worked,” and is likely generating leads.

      Content Builds Proof

      Marketers frequently create content that serves as testimony to the idea your product or service is built on. Christina Coons at Atomic Blog suggests taking it one step further and leaning on those who have already happily converted:

      Featuring your current or past customers can provide social proof of the benefits and value of your product or service. 

      Coons outlines more on the key success indicators of content in the original article below.

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    4. How to Use Social Media to Optimize Your Content Strategy

      How to Use Social Media to Optimize Your Content Strategy

      Consumers reside on social media platforms. 90% of young adults aged 18-29 are on social. It’s where they consume content and engage with brands.

      For this reason, marketers should leverage social media to grow their brand. As a marketer, growing your social media audience can improve your professional credibility, increase the visibility of your content, and allow you to share opinions with other thought leaders in your industry.

      Here are a few quick tips for improving your social media presence.

      Staying authentic on social is a key to success. Susanta Sahoo, a guest contributor on the Atomic Blog, elaborates:

      Being honest and keeping it real is the most important component of connecting with your loyal fan base. As Seth Godin said in one of his interviews, having a massive fan base on social media is useless unless there was a deep connection between the brand and its followers.

      Here are some other tips for optimizing your social strategy:

      For more on social media optimization, read Sahoo’s complete article below.

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    5. Content Curation: Just Do It

      Content Curation: Just Do It

      Regardless of how mature your content strategy is, relevant third-party content should be a part of it. Strategists include curation for one or more of the following reasons:

      • Thought Leadership: Exposing your audience to the best thinking in your subject area—regardless of where it’s from—positions you as a neutral, objective expert in your field.
      • Bandwidth: You or your team are short on key resources (time, money, people) which prevent your organization from creating enough timely, original, high quality content.

      Those are two broad reasons to curate, but curating solves challenges and delivers benefits in many areas. Content strategy best practice is to balance roughly 65 percent original content with 35 percent curated and syndicated content.

      Curation is a resourceful way to power content channels, but Jennee Rasavong of AtomicBlog suggests an important distinction:

      “The key to content curation is knowing the difference between curation and aggregation. Essentially the biggest difference is that aggregation is automated, while curation is more like being the information gatekeeper.

      When it comes to being the best “information gatekeeper” you can be, consider the following two practices.

      Stay Fresh

      Stand out by serving content that isn’t already trending. Continuously broaden the scope of where you curate content from. Use tools to pull together RSS feeds and don’t overwhelm yourself with an unmanageable queue of content. It’s fine if curated content isn’t directly related to your product or services—as long as it adds value to your audience.

      Highlight Content in a New Way

      Use your industry knowledge to build around someone else’s idea. Challenge a claim using your own data. Make their content your own; but do so ethically. There are well-established best practices for getting maximum value from curated content— follow them.

      Read more curation insights from Rasavong below.

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    6. Topical vs Evergreen Content: When, Where, and Why

      Topical vs Evergreen Content: When, Where, and Why

      Managing a content marketing strategy is a balancing act in many ways, whether you’re balancing time, the moving parts of a content engine, or a consistent content tempo. Curata advocates for a content strategy that balances curated content alongside your original content, but what should the nature of your original content look like? Let’s examine evergreen versus topical content.

      Topical content addresses developing news, events, or trends, and is often advanced to readers unfamiliar with your subject matter. Such content may deliver strong short term results, but declines in relevance over time, and therefore does not deliver sustainable results.
      Evergreen content is unreliant on breaking news or fads. It often provides actionable tips that can be applied immediately; it is not time sensitive, and/or it can be easily updated to extend its life. Examples of this content are walkthroughs and "how to” guides.
      Ultimately, evergreen content stretches your dollar further than topical content. It is more challenging to repurpose a Valentine's Day themed blog post than an “Ultimate Guide: Content Marketing Tools List.” However, that’s not to say there’s no place for topical content in your strategy. Amanda Chiu of Atomic Blog offers the following advice:
      “As a content marketer, you need to decide on the right balance between seasonal and evergreen content for your audience. However, you should always focus on making your seasonal content pieces useful. Don’t forget to create contextual links from your evergreen content pieces to your seasonal content in order to help search engines better index them.”
      A terrific time to leverage topical content is heading into an event. It creates buzz heading into a high-traffic time where you want your name to stick out. Current examples could include the 2016 Election, the revival of Pokemon, or Google shutting down Google Compare.
      For a great example of evergreen content that discusses evergreen vs. topical content, check out Amanda’s original article below.
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  1. Feed Your Content Need

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    How to Feed the Content Beast (without getting eaten alive)

    Download this great resource to learn some new tips and tricks on optimizing your content, curated or original. Foreword by Ann Handley of MarketingProfs.