Numerous articles pass across the eyeballs of the QCM staff every week. In some cases you’ll see them shared on our Twitter and Facebook accounts. But sometimes 140 characters isn’t enough for us to explain what’s important about them. This is the space where we highlight our favorite articles of the week. Enjoy!
by, John Hall
Queen City Media’s blog features a lot of talk about the benefits of content marketing. There’s plenty of them. However, one thing we rarely talk about is the way your content can be used as a hiring tool.
This idea is summed up by this quote:
If a prospective employee goes through your company’s website, stumbles upon its articles, follows its social media profiles, they should have a strong impression of the core values of the brand. If elements of your company’s culture aren’t evident through its content, then it’s possible that you need to alter your content strategy.
by, Jeff Bullas
This article by Jeff Bullas isn’t just a lesson in content marketing, but can be stretched into a lesson for life.
Viral content is generally thought of as something that gets spread rapidly through word of mouth. Often times this content is created with virality in mind. With the success that a viral hit can create, it’s easy to fall into the trap of creating everything with a full-on explosion of exposure in mind.
Here, Bullas calls attention to “slow viral content”, which is often long-form (i.e. 1000+ words) and takes longer to digest. The key with slow viral content is that it provides enough value for a long enough time that it influence a gradual build in momentum.
I think the two most important components of “slow viral” are that
- The content provides a clear value to the reader
- The content isn’t time sensitive
By producing something with “evergreen” value, you give the content a chance to develop an audience and be shared and sought after for an extended period.
by, Kelsey Libert
Here’s an article full of statistics, charts, and graphs about social networks and how they being utilized.
Here are some of the things I thought were notable about the article:
- Buzzfeed is currently crushing the competition with social sharing metrics. However, there is a huge disparity between their shares on Facebook and Twitter, which may come as surprise. Buzzfeed stands alone as the most shared website on Facebook, but isn’t in the top five on Twitter. I think their Facebook success can be attributed to the nature of that platform. Buzzfeed articles always include an interesting featured and a clickbait title, both of which get featured when shared on Facebook. On Twitter, where text/links/pictures tend to stand out a little less, Buzzfeed has performed less successfully.
- An interesting trend in shared media is the success of “dismal content”. Yes, articles with a negative angle performed quite well in 2013. Whether the sharer is for or against the article in question, people seem driven to share negativity on their social networks. As much as Buzzfeed gets knocked for some of its tactics, I will give them credit in one regard: They have much more positive content shared from their website than any of the major news publications.
Articles that feature content strategy from major sites like Buzzfeed and FOX News need to be taken with a grain of salt. Think of ways in which these strategies fit within your current voice instead of trying to make major changes.
by, Danny Sullivan
Over the weekend, Google put an end to Google Authorship in all (logged out) SERPs. Previously, search results were often displayed wtih the author’s name and (until June) thumbnail picture.
Contrary to what many think, this does not end the influence that an author can have on SEO. Author Rank, which isn’t an official term from Google but definitely a real value, is still one of the many factors in Google’s Pagerank algorithm. Content creators with a higher Author Rank will continue to have a positive effect on their Pagerank.
by, Nick Demey
There are countless guides on Slideshare about… how to make Slideshares. I enjoyed this one in particular because it included helpful reminders and stylistic tips.
One Nick’s tips was to use a great cover to draw people in. Make sure that you can read the title, make sure it has a call-to-action (not too close to the left or right edges, where the page turns), make sure that the background is saturated so it doesn’t blend in with the text. Also, make sure the cover displays nicely as both a thumbnail and in a Facebook image (Facebook cuts off 30% of your cover image!).
I found this guide very helpful from both a technical and creative standpoint.
What have you been reading lately? Let us know in the comments below!