Content Marketing
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Content Marketing

Dakota Partners delivers innovative Content Marketing Solutions that target the right customers with the right content, at all the right times and in all the right places

Curated by Bill Creighton
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Stop With All the Words Already - Use More Pictures to Tell Your Story

Stop With All the Words Already - Use More Pictures to Tell Your Story | Content Marketing | Scoop.it

"Studies show that blog posts with visuals drive up to 180% more engagement than those without.

 

This means that a visual image can allow people to digest your content, then decide if they want to continue to read the article."

Bill Creighton's insight:

 

Wait for it:

 

About 93% of all communication is nonverbal.

 

Nonverbal. That means Pictures work better than Words.

 

So why is it that so many State Fish and Wildlife agencies  and Conservation groups fail so badly at communicating with their Customers?

 

For one thing, many of the communications and outreach staff are biologists and not professional communicators. They want desperately to do better but just don't know how.

 

More importantly, they tend to be word people who have lived their lives and careers in a world of research and data.

 

I cringe every time I see a great storytelling opportunity missed by a fish and wildlife agency that uses way too many words and lousy pictures.

 

Words Matter, But Pictures Matter More.

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Bill Creighton's curator insight, March 7, 2014 10:04 AM

 

Wait for it:

 

About 93% of all communication is nonverbal.

 

Nonverbal. That means Pictures work better than Words.

 

So why is it that so many State Fish and Wildlife agencies  and Conservation groups fail so badly at communicating with their Customers?

 

For one thing, many of the communications and outreach staff are biologists and not professional communicators. They want desperately to do better but just don't know how.

 

More importantly, they tend to be word people who have lived their lives and careers in a world of research and data.

 

I cringe every time I see a great storytelling opportunity missed by a fish and wildlife agency that uses way too many words and lousy pictures.


Words Matter, But Pictures Matter More.

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Journalists and Accountability - The Elephant in the Room

Journalists and Accountability - The Elephant in the Room | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
The days of editorial teams being quietly sheltered from the rigors of the sales team are long gone.

 

But what does performance pay mean for good journalism?

Bill Creighton's insight:

 

Journalists have been sheltered forever from the unpleasantness of the business side of journalism. 

 

They have hidden behind lofty terms like "objectivity" and "public good." They have sought to remain pure and uninfluenced by greed and power.

 

Right.

 

Journalists have been sheltered from accountability and that has to change. Technology provides the mechanism to measure the quality of a journalists writing. 

 

Should journalists' pay be tied to revenue. You bet.

 

Consider this.

 

What other business allows its employees to create products that Customers are not interested in consuming?

 

 

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"Adult Onset Hunters"

"Adult Onset Hunters" | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

I do a great deal of work with a wonderful group of dedicated folks, mostly passionate biologists and wildlife professionals. They have spent their lives focused on critters.

 

Not only do they practice Conservation and protect wildlife, they also provide services to ... ready for it ... people.

 

The problem is that they see these citizens through a wildlife prism. In a well-meaning effort to understand and group their bosses (voters) they use the only framework they know best.

 

One group they are now focused on selling to is the coveted 18-34 year-old demographic. This group is under-represented in the hunting population and one of the fastest growing groups to take up shooting sports.

 

There are lots of ways to describe this group, "millenials" and "Gen Y" come to mind and they are not too bad or remotely offensive.

 

Unfortunately, they are being lumped into a group called "Adult Onset Hunters."

 

A quick Bing search for "Adult Onset" shows results in the accompanying diseases and maladies that no one would wish for.

 

Perhaps my friends would have more success thinking about the people in this group as individuals, like their their friends and neighbors. 

 

I'm not sure I would want to join a group that labels me "Adult Onset" anything.

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Bill Creighton's curator insight, February 5, 2014 4:43 PM

 

I do a great deal of work with a wonderful group of dedicated folks, mostly passionate biologists and wildlife professionals. They have spent their lives focused on critters.

 

Not only do they practice Conservation and protect wildlife, they also provide services to ... ready for it ... people.

 

The problem is that they see these citizens through a wildlife prism. In a well-meaning effort to understand and group their bosses (voters) they use the only framework they know best.

 

One group they are now focused on selling to is the coveted 18-34 year-old demographic. This group is under-represented in the hunting population and one of the fastest growing groups to take up shooting sports.

 

There are lots of ways to describe this group, "millenials" and "Gen Y" come to mind and they are not too bad or remotely offensive.

 

Unfortunately, they are being lumped into a group called "Adult Onset Hunters."

 

A quick Bing search for "Adult Onset" shows results in the accompanying diseases and maladies that no one would wish for.

 

Perhaps my friends would have more success thinking about the people in this group as individuals, like their their friends and neighbors. 

 

I'm not sure I would want to join a group that labels me "Adult Onset" anything.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bill Creighton's curator insight, February 17, 2014 12:18 PM

 

I do a great deal of work with a wonderful group of dedicated folks, mostly passionate biologists and wildlife professionals. They have spent their lives focused on critters.

 

Not only do they practice Conservation and protect wildlife, they also provide services to ... ready for it ... people.

 

The problem is that they see these citizens through a wildlife prism. In a well-meaning effort to understand and group their bosses (voters) they use the only framework they know best.

 

One group they are now focused on selling to is the coveted 18-34 year-old demographic. This group is under-represented in the hunting population and one of the fastest growing groups to take up shooting sports.

 

There are lots of ways to describe this group, "millenials" and "Gen Y" come to mind and they are not too bad or remotely offensive.

 

Unfortunately, they are being lumped into a group called "Adult Onset Hunters."

 

A quick Bing search for "Adult Onset" shows results in the accompanying diseases and maladies that no one would wish for.

 

Perhaps my friends would have more success thinking about the people in this group as individuals, like their their friends and neighbors. 

 

I'm not sure I would want to join a group that labels me "Adult Onset" anything.

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How To Write A Press Release That Doesn't Completely Suck

How To Write A Press Release That Doesn't Completely Suck | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Love them or hate them press releases aren't going anywhere. So here's how to create one that people will actually want to read.
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

Lots of great advice about writing press releases.

 

Especially like the admonition NOT to use jargon and acronyms that mere mortals will not understand.

 

The point about telling stories that deserved to be shared is also great advice.

 

I would add one more item to the list:

 

The press release is not about you. If you want your story shared and you are pitching it a reporter, editor, blog or news wire - remember this.

 

Your release needs to solve one of their problems. That is, these editors want to deliver stories that are designed to be shared. Present your release in a way that's so easy and understandable that they cannot help but share your story.

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Welcome to the Era of Crappy Content

Welcome to the Era of Crappy Content | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
There’s never been so much content, and there’s never been so much crap. That is the sad fact in this time of the content creator, where everyone is making stuff and publishing it, willy nilly....
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

As a recovering journalist that got his start at a local newspaper, it breaks my heart to see publishers discarding their photo departments in favor of more writers.

 

Cleaver headlines and Buzzfeed-like content will drive traffic. Pictures drive emotional engagement.

 

Words matter, Pictures matter more.

 

 

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Pint-sized vendor offers valuable sales reminder

Pint-sized vendor offers valuable sales reminder | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
A common summer sight in the United States — a child selling cold drinks on the corner — offers a valuable refresher on a marketing basic: Sell to customers where they are.
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

The only question that matters:

 

Would you buy what you are selling?

 

If not, it's probably time to rethink your products and services based on the value they deliver to your Customer.

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Do you trust your customers? Do they trust you?

Do you trust your customers? Do they trust you? | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Pursue a Culture of Trust

The same goes for consumers of brands across the board. It’s essential to figure out how to build trust quickly and then pursue that trust relentlessly until you’re sure it has been gained. After that, you have to find a way to continue the relationship and cement that trust. It’s a challenge that we all face and an area where we could all use more focus and strategy.

Bill Creighton's insight:

 

It is fascinating to look at businesses and organizations from the perspective of "trust." 

 

Take for example - Zappos - and their "no questions asked" return policy. 

 

They trust their Customers to be honest when they return a product that doesn't meet their needs. Their Customers reward that trust with continued purchases and fierce advocacy.

 

Take the example of many state Fish and Wildlife agecies and their rules and regulations regarding hunting and hunter education.

 

Sadly, many agencies believe their role is one of "enforcement" as opposed to "enabling." 

 

Those state agencies that adopt a "customer-first" attitude are growing their license sales and building advocates.

 

Those that build unsurmountable barriers are losing the fight.

 

Next time you go to buy a hunting or fishing license - ask yourself.

 

Does MY state fish and wildlife agency trust me?

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Words Matter, Pictures Matter More

Words Matter, Pictures Matter More | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

This is a great example of using a strong and creative image to convey value to the reader.

 

Take a moment and think about the sheer number of words that would be required to sell the value of the concrete product. 

 

Imagine lots of technical terms and diagrams and scientific data to prove "we are better than the other guys."

 

Or simply use a strong image to get your message across.

 

 

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The Road to Hell ... Brand Tweets That 'Honor' MLK Backfire - Digiday

A roundup of the more notable MLK tweets that incurred the wrath of the Internet from companies that should know better.
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

Sometimes the best intentions result in the worst results.

 

Sometimes -- Actions are simply better than words.

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A look back at Advertising that Worked.

A look back at Advertising that Worked. | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

Look closely at the billboards.

 

Are they advertising a product or are they selling the dream of a better life? How about your marketing and advertising?

 

If you don't know the difference, your Customer will probably not know the difference either.

 

Money and opportunity wasted.

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NewsCred Raises $25 Million to Fill a Content-Marketing War Chest. (What's Content Marketing Again?)

NewsCred Raises $25 Million to Fill a Content-Marketing War Chest. (What's Content Marketing Again?) | Content Marketing | Scoop.it

Congrats to @newscred for the funding round. Use it wisely...

 

Bill Creighton's insight:

 

Having lived in the content creation world for most of my career, it's been fun watching companies come (and go) all with the notion of providing great content to the next generation of customers.

 

Sometimes it text, other times video, and more recently pictures.

 

The one thing that newcomers often lack is a trusted relationship with the readers. 

 

Trust is earned not created by technology or great curation. Both are important.

 

The reader needs to believe your story, make it her own, and share it with friends and family.

 

That's what makes Content Marketing work.

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When seconds count, which choice ...

When seconds count, which choice ... | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

Advertising is intended to drive a Customer to action. 

 

Smart marketers know that using strong images coupled with powerful text creates success.

 

This image makes a powerful statement that transcends politics and the divisive nature of gun control.

 

It is now personal. 

 

Is your advertising all about you, or your Customers?

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Can a gun protect India's women from rape and violence?

Can a gun protect India's women from rape and violence? | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Jon Henley: Named after the 23-year-old who was raped and killed in Delhi in 2012, the Nirbheek pistol has been designed for women.
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

This gun is not very pretty.

 

It lacks the clean lines of a Glock. It lacks the capacity of an AR-15. It is not as expensive as a Kimber 1911.

 

But it serves a purpose. It is designed to save lives.

 

It is also designed specifically for its intended market. The state-run Indian Ordnance Factory produces a product that delivers the right product at the right price.


Is the gun designed to kill?


Nope - it is designed to increase a woman's conmfidence and deter attachers.


Can you convey the value of your product to your customers in a way that makes sense to them?

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Instagram: It's All About Me (Isn't all social about me?)

Instagram: It's All About Me (Isn't all social about me?) | Content Marketing | Scoop.it

Instagram's Three Most Important Benefits:

 

- We want to make our lives look good. 

- We want to let others see our lives from our perspective.  


- We want to share compelling images of our world with others. 

Bill Creighton's insight:

 

All great images tell stories. Sometimes they are purely luck but more often they are the end result of process of seeing and capturing.

 

Instagram makes it easy to share your pictures but that doesn't mean they are automatically great images. Even the most creative filters cannot repair a bad image.

 

Great advice here for amateurs and pros alike.

 

See it first - then capture the image.

 

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Does Your Story Smell? The Important Lesson in Netflix's Hyper-Categorization

Does Your Story Smell? The Important Lesson in Netflix's Hyper-Categorization | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Much has been made in content marketing circles of The Atlantic's recent investigation into how Netflix took on Hollywood and wildly re-categorized all the films available in th...
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

Data are 1's and 0's - nothing more. 

 

How you use that data is what matters. And how you describe what you do with that data maters as well.

 

What really matters is that your Customers have all of the clues they need to find the content they want. 

 

And the best of these clues are driven by intelligent use of data.

 

Does your data "smell" as sweet as Netflix'?

 

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Content vs. Service - Don't Confuse the Two

Content vs. Service - Don't Confuse the Two | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Press Gazette, Britain's Journalism Weekly: news, analysis and jobs
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

There is a ton of content online and there is more coming available each and every day.

 

Some of it is original and most of it is not.

 

Does that make the curated or aggregated content worth less?

 

Maybe but maybe not.

 

Longform journalism is an important part of any free society. Its goal is to inform society.

 

But so content curation, especially when context is added to the original story.

 

Longform is content creation; curation is a service that adds value. 

 

Don't confuse the two.

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The Half-Life of Social Content — Writing, Thinking, and Opinions

The Half-Life of Social Content — Writing, Thinking, and Opinions | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Yesterday, Facebook announced Paper, the first creation from Facebook Labs.
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

The market's concensus is that newspapers are dead. Most unfortunately are.

 

Ironic that the most used online platform creates an app named after dead trees.

 

Maybe newspapers are not dead. Maybe they just need to understand that their value is in the content they create, not the medium used to deliver it.

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Quiet Contemplation -- A Lesson in Simplicity

Quiet Contemplation -- A Lesson in Simplicity | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

This is a beautiful picture.

 

It is genuine. It is provacative. It is real.

 

Customers expect honest communcation and  not hype ... deceive them at your peril.

 

Amanda Owen is building a passionate following for her Twitter feed and her pictures. 

 

Both are simple and real. Have a look and enjoy.

 

https://twitter.com/AmandaOwen8

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Bill Creighton's curator insight, February 4, 2014 11:19 AM

 

This is a beautiful picture.

 

It is genuine. It is provacative. It is real.

 

Customers expect honest communcation and  not hype ... deceive them at your peril.

 

Amanda Owen is building a passionate following for her Twitter feed and her pictures. 

 

Both are simple and real. Have a look and enjoy.

 

https://twitter.com/AmandaOwen8

 

 

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Total Immersion Journalism - Seeking the Truth One Tapeworm at a Time

Total Immersion Journalism - Seeking the Truth One Tapeworm at a Time | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Science journalist and presenter Michael Mosley deliberately infested himself with tapeworms to explore the astonishing world of parasites for a new BBC documentary.
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

With the extreme amount of noise online, journalists and their news orgainzations are resorting to extreme methods of storytelling.

 

It's no longer sufficient to simply state the facts it seems. Dry and unemotional stories are no longer interesting to online readers. They want Upworthy headlines and Buzzfeed stories.

 

Maybe.

 

This is a great example of personal storytelling. Without a doubt, the first reaction to Michael Mosley's piece is extremely personal and all about the viewer.

 

Are you telling stories that your readers and viewers can passionately and emotionally relate to?

 

 

 

 

 

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Save the Owls by Shooting the Owls!

Save the Owls by Shooting the Owls! | Content Marketing | Scoop.it

Remember the spotted owl?

That little critter had a big impact on U.S. environmental law in the Pacific Northwest.

 

 



 

Bill Creighton's insight:

 

Yep - this is a trolling headline.

 

Yep - this is a gratuitous edit of the story to pull out emotionally charged quotes.

 

Yep - they are going to shoot the owls to save the owls.

 

This is a remarkable example of inherent bias when it comes to reporting emotionally charged news.

 

To be clear, in this use bias is not a criticism. It is simply describing a point of departure. Perhaps "perspective" is a better term to use.

 

This is written from the perspective of the impact in People - putting people first.

 

Environmental take the position that Critters matter more than People and the world would be a better place without people to mess things up.

 

Perspective is a remarkable thing and there is absolutely nothing wrong with leading with a unique perspective when engaging customers. 

 

Smart marketers understand the perspective their customers use when engaging with their brand. They tell stories that connect customers with their emotions. 

 

Know your audience - simple stuff.

 

(BTW - if you can relate to this owl story, have a look at what's happening with the California Condor.)

 

 

 

 

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The Golden Rule of Great CX: Think Like a Customer, Act Like an Owner

The Golden Rule of Great CX: Think Like a Customer, Act Like an Owner | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

Businesses operate to make money.

 

They are not charities. They have owners and shareholders and must provide a return on investments.

 

It's easy to cut costs, slash staff, back away from quality for the sake of profits.

 

But that is short term thinking and a receipe for long term failure.

 

Focusing on the Customer as the owner of the business is your best bet. Give them quality, give them value, give them the level of service they deserve.

 

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Bill Creighton's curator insight, January 26, 2014 4:44 PM

 

Businesses operate to make money.

 

They are not charities. They have owners and shareholders and must provide a return on investments.

 

It's easy to cut costs, slash staff, back away from quality for the sake of profits.

 

But that is short term thinking and a receipe for long term failure.

 

Focusing on the Customer as the owner of the business is your best bet. Give them quality, give them value, give them the level of service they deserve.

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Being There - Feathers fly at the Vatican after Pope's doves attacked by gull and crow.

Being There - Feathers fly at the Vatican after Pope's doves attacked by gull and crow. | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Feathers flew at the Vatican after two doves were released by two children from the Pope's balcony during his Sunday address at the Vatican and immediately attacked by a gull and a crow.
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

Many years ago, as an aspiring journalist with @UPI, I had the duty of manning the death watch. It was an interesting lesson in patience, planning and making your own luck. It was also a great lesson in Customer Relationships.

 

The assignment was simple.

 

Go the airport and watch Air Force 1 land and then go back and watch the plane carring the President fly away.

 

The purpose was not to get pictures of the plane or the President - it was to be there in case there was a catastropic event and the plane crashed.

 

You see, our Customers expected that we would have these images in the event the plane went down. If we failed to deliver the pictures,we would lose the Customer's contract.

 

What we were actually selling was Trust, not pictures.

 

Once earned Trust is a powerful force. Once lost, it is almost impossible to get back.

 

Are you selling Trust?  Do your Customers Trust you?

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5 Creative Examples of Selfies as Social Media Content

5 Creative Examples of Selfies as Social Media Content | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

People love pictures of themselves and those with whom they share common geography, interests, values or community links.

 

The challenge for brands it to help guide their audiences into make the right pictures that support the brand's values.

 

The power that comes with of sharing of "selfies" works both ways.

 

Brand champions will make the brand look great. When brands drop the ball on the Customer Experience those same champions can nail them with really bad images.

 

 

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CNN’s home page pairs Justin Bieber’s arrest with teen driving ads

CNN’s home page pairs Justin Bieber’s arrest with teen driving ads | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Pop star and budding cautionary tale Justin Bieber was arrested for a DUI in Florida, and CNN's homepage paired the news with an ad promoting safe teen driving.
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

The justaposition of this story and ad is either great luck and perfect timing or a function of well designed technology.

 

Or was this a matter of knowing that at some point Justin Bieber would implode?

 

It's sort of like the Oreo and lights out at the Super Bowl last year.

 

Either way, preparation is the key.

 Are you prepared ?
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Simple is Better

Simple is Better | Content Marketing | Scoop.it
Bill Creighton's insight:

 

Too often marketers feel like they have to use a lot of words to get their message across.

 

You don't need a lot of words to get this message, do you?

 

Pictures have an impact.

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