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Four Steps to More-Viral Marketing Content

Thursday, June 16th, 2016 by Eric Wilinski

Going viral is the content marketer’s holy grail. By making audiences feel compelled to share your content, you can multiply the impact of your marketing spend by orders of magnitude. But how do you make that happen? How do you create viral content, like the Old Spice Guy video campaign . . .

 

. . . or this tweet from Adobe . . .

 

Unfortunately, there’s no guaranteed recipe for creating viral content. Whether your content goes viral is the audience’s decision—it’s out of your hands. But taking the following steps will improve your odds of achieving viral success:

1. Make sure your product meets or exceeds your brand promise. This should be a no-brainer. If your branding emphasizes speed, or reliability, or affordability, your product had better be fast, or reliable, or affordable. If it isn’t—beware. In the worst case, negative reviews of your product will go viral. This, of course, is the kind of virality you don’t want. Consider the following, a catchy ditty about United Airlines that has more than 15 million views on YouTube . . .

2. Create stand-out messaging. Your message needs to rise above the noise. For this to happen, you need to stop selling and start focusing on providing audiences with real value. This can be aesthetic or entertainment value—as in the case of GE’s popular Instagram feed—or it can be more the practical value that audiences get from the respected GE Reports brand magazine, which publishes technology stories that frequently go viral. And you’ll improve your chances at virality by making your content emotionally engaging—surprising, anxiety-provoking, or (above all) awe-inspiring.

3. Write a good headline. The headline is your hook. It needs to grab the audience’s attention by promising content that’s particularly valuable and/or emotionally engaging. This article is a good place to start.

4. Be strategic about content distribution. Virality typically begins within specific communities. Content about games and gaming goes viral within gaming communities, for instance. Fashion-focused content goes viral within completely different communities. Ditto for content about technology, or finance, or healthcare. And so on. The point is this: To maximize your reach, identify and make content of value to specific communities, then distribute your content to those communities.

Happy marketing!

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How to Stretch Your Marketing Budget

Wednesday, June 8th, 2016 by Allison Hayase

We love to give our clients what they want, and sometimes that means coming up with creative ways to help them do more with a smaller budget. To help clients spend less, we’ve found ways to modify the asset format, change the approach (they do more work—we do less), or decrease the number of drafts […]

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Edit Like Nobody’s Watching: What I Learned from the Wrong Editing Tool

Thursday, June 2nd, 2016 by David Hayward

One of my ongoing projects is editing a series of articles, each written by one author but incorporating feedback from several teams. Instead of the conventional email-and-Word approach, we set out to use a cloud-based collaboration tool built for speed and simplicity. The tool would let us avoid endless email chains, conflicting sets of feedback, […]

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Yes, There Is a “Right Way” to Create Amazing B2B Marketing Content

Tuesday, May 24th, 2016 by Stacy Crinks

Here at the Content Bureau, we really like efficiency. We include a detailed project methodology in every proposal, and work very hard to hold our clients to that process during every project. We do this for one simple reason: our methodology helps us to create the highest-quality marketing content quickly, cost-effectively, and with the least […]

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5 Things Content Marketers Can Learn from Prince

Tuesday, May 10th, 2016 by Kate Spears

The beautiful Purple One is, sadly, gone. His most enduring legacy will be his virtuoso guitar playing followed by fabulous showmanship in a killer wardrobe. But there are other ways Prince left his mark, and content marketers could learn a thing or two from him in our own work. Stories and visual prose are more […]

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Throwback Thursday: It’s 3pm—Do You Know Where Your Copywriter Is?

Thursday, May 5th, 2016 by Bobbie Hartman

3pm Monday: I’m sitting in a coffee shop, working on a white paper, while my daughter has a guitar lesson. Sure, it’s great to have this kind of work flexibility, especially when you’ve got kids. But while I was tapping away and sipping my latté, it also hit me that hiring a copywriter, like me, […]

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Four Online Tools to Improve Your Copywriting

Tuesday, April 26th, 2016 by Eric Wilinski

Good copywriting is smart—plus polished, professional, and mistake-free. It helps your brand look good. It can also help you engage your audience more deeply and convert more prospects to customers. If you’re looking to “level up” the quality of your copywriting, there are many helpful tools available on the internet: 1. The free Hemingway App […]

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The Grammar Queen’s Guide to Capitalization

Wednesday, April 20th, 2016 by Lisa Stonestreet

  Your Highness:  I must confess a shortcoming. Sometimes I’m not sure when to capitalize words. OK, some words. The important ones, like my Boss’s Job Title (boss’s job title?). And the smaller ones in headlines. The more examples that come to mind, the more confused I get. Please help.   My dear Subject, Never […]

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Case Study: The Content Bureau Creates High-Quality Sales Content for Financial Services Nonprofit, Opportunity Fund

Tuesday, April 12th, 2016 by Stacy Crinks

We were delighted when beloved long-time client Anna Suarez called us from her new office at Opportunity Fund, a growing nonprofit that provides microloans to some of the neediest small businesses in California. We have thoroughly enjoyed helping Anna create some great new content—messaging, a PowerPoint deck, a data sheet—often working collaboratively with her team […]

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How to Create a High-Impact PowerPoint Slide

Tuesday, April 5th, 2016 by Ruth Burk

Perhaps you’ve seen one recently: a great PowerPoint presentation that was both content-rich and visually interesting. As a B2B marketing professional, you may have wondered what makes a truly great slide. One that’s as concise as it is visually compelling. One that’s copied, pasted, and passed around for use in multiple decks throughout your company. […]

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