How Services Firms Grow with Online Marketing (Guest Post)
MAY 14, 2013
A note from Janice: Professional services for activities such as infrastructure assessments, deployment planning, and outsourced IT operations are a significant revenue stream for many technology companies. However, these services aren''t often the focus of guidance for effective marketing. How Services Firms Grow with Online Marketing. by Sylvia Montgomery. Focus on Online Tools.
Four Tips to Guarantee Freelancer Websites Deliver Great Results (Guest Post)
FEBRUARY 12, 2013
A note from Janice: I know that not every technology company has the budget to hire a freelance technical copywriter with my depth of subject knowledge, writing skill, and marketing savvy. For these companies, the freelance marketplace sites can be a good way to find writers for less-demanding content projects. But using these sites can be overwhelming and nonproductive if not approached carefully. In this helpful guest post, marcom manager Christine Farrier offers practical advice on finding the right freelance writer on the marketplace sites. The current. effectiveness. The challenge is to.
Justifying the Cost of an Experienced Freelance Writer
AUGUST 14, 2012
"How long have you been freelancing?" is a question I rarely hear when I am discussing my copywriting services with a potential client. But it's a question you will want to ask any freelance copywriter you hire. The reason? writer who is experienced in running a business and managing projects as a freelancer can save you time, money, and headaches through more effective project activity and relationships. The factors below show the often-overlooked value to be gained by working with a long-established freelance writer. Value Area. Experienced Freelance Copywriters …. Project Management.
Do You Need a Long-Form or Short-Form Copywriter?
AUGUST 13, 2013
A typical job ad for a copywriter includes a statement like this: "Must be able to write all types of content, from white papers to webpages to tweets.". Sounds good, right? Indeed, some freelance writers promote themselves as the one person who can take care of all your copywriting needs. But that single-source approach may not in fact be the best way to serve your content marketing projects.
Packaging Case Studies to Increase Their Promotional Value
JUNE 11, 2013
Go to the website of many technology companies and find the link for case studies. The page that appears is likely a long, undifferentiated list of all the case studies the company has ever produced. What a lost promotional opportunity! Instead of taking time to look through the list, most customers will click on just the first one or two links. Case Studies Content Marketing Sales Materials
Your SMEs are tasked with more writing, but should they actually do it?
MARCH 2, 2011
Whether they like it or not, whether they feel capable or not, many technical subject matter experts (SMEs) are now expected to be a white paper writer, a web content writer, and a blog post writer. However, in most cases, these writing assignments aren't getting done--which is frustrating to both the SMEs and the marcom managers who oversee these projects. Time and workload demands.
Content Marketing Insights for Technology Companies
FEBRUARY 1, 2011
A study conducted by the Content Marketing Institute about content marketing efforts in the computing and software industry presents interesting data on how technology marketers use different promotional techniques and their perceptions of the effectiveness for each. Yet the report shows that marketers give middling ratings for the effectiveness of much of this content.
Are You Abandoning Your Leads after a Webinar?
MARCH 11, 2014
What do you do for viewers after they''ve watched your live webinar? What do you do with those who (gasp!) have left the session early, before they see the slide with your call to action and web link for more information? Based on my Webinar experiences lately, you may be abandoning valuable leads right at the point when you have their attention. See if this experience is familiar.
Content Marketing 2016: Staffing, Measurement, and Effectiveness
We surveyed 2016's content marketing leaders on their biggest issues, hurdles, and goals.
WriteSpark: Best Blog Posts about White Papers
NOVEMBER 14, 2012
This month's list focuses on my best posts and recommended resources for white papers. If you are a white paper writer or you manage white paper writing projects, you'll want to read these posts: Is your topic worthy of a white paper? Guidance for choosing which topics are really worth the expense and effort of a white paper. Top 10 ways to be a good SME. Tips to pass along to your engineers and product managers for providing helpful input for a white paper project. Set the purchasing agenda with white papers. complete and in-depth guide to writing white papers.
10 Signals That Your Project Needs a Professional Copywriter
MARCH 16, 2010
In an ideal world, you would use a professional writer for every marketing or public relations document produced by your company. But limited budgets likely mean you can assign only the most high-value projects to a freelance copywriter. How can you justify the expense of a professional writer for other projects? These 10 signals can help build your case for budget approval: .
Case Studies: Ask Short, Clear Questions
FEBRUARY 14, 2012
When you ask questions during a case study interview, do you talk too much? If you're getting answers that are lackluster, confusing, or less complete or enthusiastic than you expect, the problem may be how you asked the questions. Common symptoms: Using more than two sentences for a question. Asking for too much information in a single question. Feeling the temptation to explain a topic or share a story of your experience after you state the question, but before you allow the customer to answer. This is especially true for customers who are not fluent in your language.
White Papers: Refresh or Write Fresh?
APRIL 8, 2014
Your marketing department may produce dozens of new white papers each year, but how often do you refresh an existing one? For many technology marketers, once a white paper is written and posted it''s instantly forgotten. Yet many older white papers can deliver renewed value to your promotional efforts with less expense, time, and effort than producing a new one. Was written more than a year ago.
Study: How Much of Your Content Marketing Is Effective?
745 marketers told us how effective their content marketing is. Here's what we learned.
Why You Still Need PDFs for Content Marketing
JANUARY 14, 2014
Last month I was on the website of a major technology company, looking for basic information about a product. entered the product name into the search field and the first page of links to come up were all related to developer''s notes. Not exactly what I was looking for. Especially for many technical decision-makers, an early question about a product is "what are the specs?"
Can Your Copywriter Do the Math?
SEPTEMBER 10, 2013
What''s wrong with this statement? 30% of users who rely mostly on voice calls + 40% of users who rely mostly on texting = 70% of users are ready to adopt video calls. It seems pretty simple: The numbers 30+40 add up to 70, so the statement must be correct, right? Well, maybe. Would your copywriter catch this error or have the knowledge to avoid it? High or low? Context. Source and fact checking.
Murphy's Laws of High Tech Copywriting
APRIL 9, 2013
Although April Fool''s Day was last week, its mischievous spirit is active year-round in technology marketing projects. And this mischief often reflects the proverbial Murphy''s Law, that "whatever can go wrong, will.". So, with tongue firmly in cheek, here are my top 12 ways that Murphy''s Law applies to technical copywriting projects. Copyright(c) 2013, Janice King. Source: [link
Do You Want a Case Study or Just Feedback?
MARCH 12, 2013
A prime customer has just agreed to participate in a case study for your product--great news! But it can be tempting to turn what should be a focused case study interview call into an extended grilling of the customer for every bit of product feedback you can get. That's update mistake for two reasons: The customer may lose patience with the process and back-out of the case study.
Definitive Guide to Planning a New Content Initiative
Are you kicking off new content initiatives this year? This comprehensive ebook from DivvyHQ asks the 10 most vital questions that should be answered (before you start executing anything) to ensure the success of each new content initiative.
Great Ideas and Resources for Technology Content Marketing
JANUARY 10, 2012
As the new year begins, you likely have plans for a long list of content marketing projects. Or maybe you're not sure about the best types and formats for content that will best fit your marketing challenges, budgets, and needs. Whatever your situation, you'll find great ideas and resources for B2B and technical content marketing in the Content Marketing Institute site. link].
What To Do With a "Not Quite Ready" Technology Case Study
APRIL 6, 2011
One of your company's sales reps e-mails you in breathless excitement: "We just signed a contract with XYZ company and they are willing to say great things about us. Can we get the writer to do a case study?". Of course, it's not everyday that a customer actually volunteers to give a positive testimonial about your product or company. Have you encountered this situation?
Recruiting Customer References on your Website
AUGUST 18, 2009
Run a Google search on the phrase "customer reference programs" and you'll easily find links to information from many technology companies. Typical content on a customer reference page includes: A discussion of program activities and benefits for participating customers. An online form for expressing interest in becoming a reference customer. link to request a reference call or visit. Case Studie
Case Studies: Does Your Team Know What Makes a Good Success Story?
JULY 10, 2012
One of your sales reps sends a breathless e-mail: "XYZ company just signed a contract. They'd make a great success story!" Or, you're preparing to launch a new product and you know that a strong customer case study would be very helpful for substantiating your marketing messages. So, you ask the product manager whether any of the customers involved in beta testing or early product release would be good candidates. In both cases, what input do you receive? Most likely, just a customer name and contact details, with little if any information on the story itself.
White Papers: Too Much Fat, Not Enough Meat
JUNE 12, 2012
It's easy to overload technology white papers with content that is irrelevant and poorly structured for the reader's interest. These bloated documents can mean not only diminished marketing results, but also a missed opportunity for delivering the information prospects seek. According to an Eccolo Media survey of IT buyers, ". white papers that don't contain enough technical information are more likely to disappoint than those that possess too much.". The ideas below will help you avoid this problem by trimming the "fat"--unnecessary or excessive content--from your technical white papers.
Missing Technical Details May Turn Away Buyers
MAY 8, 2012
What can a catalog about sewing threads teach a technology marketer about writing effective sales content? A lot about missed opportunities for engaging prospects and motivating them to make a purchase. create art quilts as a hobby and at a recent trade show I eagerly picked up a catalog from a well-regarded specialty thread manufacturer. With hundreds of threads on the market, I was looking for detailed guidance about the qualities of each thread, its best application in terms of projects and fabrics, and which needle size to use for best results.
Do You Need a Specialty Copywriter?
APRIL 10, 2012
It's easy to understand that not every freelance writer is a good match for every marketing project. Yet, how can you recognize when you need a specialty writer and identify what kind of writer to seek? These ideas can help your search. You need a writer with specific technical or subject knowledge. Teaching a generalist writer about your products, customers, and applications probably isn't a good use of time--for yourself or your subject experts. specialty writer, such as a technical copywriter, brings strong knowledge to your projects. Your project requires a specific writing style.
Tell Your Own Stories
MARCH 2, 2010
Does your company produce a product that it uses internally? If so, have you written your own case study? Some of the largest technology companies are certainly users of their own products. And many have produced case studies, white papers, and other resources about the implementations, the value gained, and the lessons learned.
Staffing and Launching Your Content Marketing Program
Brand voice? Editorial calendar? Approval workflow? Learn how to craft the crucial parts of a content marketing program. In the third installment of our five-part playbook series, discover the necessary steps to execute a content marketing program.
Good Content Marketing Resources You May Have Missed
DECEMBER 10, 2013
The quiet that comes when work slows for the the holidays is a good time to catch up on the best marketing resources of the past year. Here are three that I recommend: 101 Examples of Effective Calls to Action from Hubspot. Full of useful examples for presenting an eye-catching, action-motivating call to action on a webpage. Blueprint of a Modern Marketing Campaign from Kapost.
When You Can't Find a Writer Who Knows Your Technology
NOVEMBER 6, 2013
You''ve searched on LinkedIn and Google. You''ve called every trade magazine reporter you''ve ever met to see if they accept freelance gigs. You''ve asked every colleague, ad agency person, friend, relative, neighbor, and dog you know. And still you haven''t been able to find a freelance copywriter who has that magic combination of good writing skills and strong knowledge of your technology.
Maximizing the Content Value of an Interview Call
OCTOBER 8, 2013
Good content is a shame to waste. Especially when it''s right in front of you, ready to be adapted for a document, video, or presentation. So often when I''m working on a content marketing project, I see good stories and information go by the wayside simply because they don''t fit the immediate need. And so, a potentially very valuable marketing opportunity is wasted.
Refresh Your Best Marketing Content
JANUARY 9, 2013
At the beginning of the year, your content marketing plans are likely focused on new, new, new: New white papers, sales brochures, Web articles, and customer case studies. But equally valuable marketing opportunities may await you in the old--through a relatively simple, fast, and inexpensive refresh of your best existing materials. What factors are you considering in your marcom plans for 2012?
WriteSpark: Best Blog Posts about Content Marketing
DECEMBER 12, 2012
This month's list focuses on my best posts and recommended resources for content marketing as it applies to technology products, services, and companies. If you are involved in producing any type of technical sales or promotional materials, you'll find these posts helpful: What does the content tell you? How to look beyond the standard collateral list to create fresh ideas for marketing content.