Madison Marketing Group Blog

6 Guidelines for Writing Anything, Anywhere, for Anyone

Turn your doodle into a document.

In the past two years I have laid claim to various titles: student, teacher, student-teacher, and now, copywriter and part-time blogger for an inbound marketing agency. With each switch, I've geared up for entrance into what I was sure would be a whole new world. Yet, in each new position I've found I rely on skills I honed in the last. There seems to be this well of water I continually draw from, one which exists as a source for all writers, even those outside the content marketing industry.

Whether you’re a poet, a proposal writer, or a 10th grade student putting off your literary analysis, you’re sure to save time and face by adhering to these 6 universal writing guidelines:

1. Keep it simple
All texts are written to be read, so be kind to your reader. Excess details and lengthy explanations turn people off. Your teacher doesn't want to know about the hike in the woods that inspired your brilliant thesis and your customer could care less about the ins and outs of the software you’re using to monitor their account. Without neglecting style, use as few words as possible to get your message across.

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How To Get The Most Out Of Social Keyword Monitoring With HootSuite

If you’re only occasionally posting updates to social media, doing so directly within each platform works well.

For businesses looking to post frequently across multiple platforms in an efficient way, there’s no doubt that investing in a social media management tool, like Hootsuite, is the way to go.

This post examines an additional benefit of using HootSuite—monitoring keywords through social listening and applying the results to your overall digital marketing strategies.

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Maximize Landing Page Exposure To Get The Most Out Of Inbound Marketing

Make sure your landing pages are long on exposure, like this photograph. (sorry)

As an inbound marketer, your campaign will go only as far as your landing pages take it. While crafting a landing page with compelling copy, an enticing offer anda clear call-to-action is important, it won’t generate leads at an optimal level unless your campaign is driving as much traffic to it as possible.

Given how crucial driving landing page traffic is to converting prospects to leads, it amazes me how under-exposed many of our clients’ landing pages are. In an effort to move prospects down the sales funnel, make sure you’re using most or all of the tactics listed below to drive landing page traffic. I’ve divided the tactics by their prevalence of use.

Obvious tactics

Email marketing. If email marketing is a part of your campaign, it’s essential you’re directing your leads to a landing page relevant to the email content. Plenty of email marketers already do a great job of tying email blasts to a landing page, but there are other, more subtle ways to incorporate landing pages into email as well. Consider incorporating landing pages into your business email signature with a tool like Wisestamp.

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What's a Landing Page and How to Make One

Content is at the core of any inbound marketing strategy. However, there’s quite a bit of debate in the content marketing community over just how accessible your content should be.

Some professionals promote making content completely available to all, free of any type of contact information exchange – I’m thinking of SEOmoz and The New Rules of Marketing and PR author David Meerman Scott.

And that certainly is a valid way to do it. However, placing content behind a gate is an important part of the marketing strategy – it’s a way of sifting out qualified leads from tire-kickers (the basis of inbound marketing). And if you’re using marketing automation software like HubSpot, you’ll gain a wealth of intelligence about the people interested in whatever it is you do.

So how do you leverage your content to gain this intelligence and begin the complex process of leading prospects toward a sale?

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My 5 Point Plan for Writing Great Blog Posts

The first time I tried to write a fully optimized blog post about inbound marketing, I was lost. Question after panicky question popped into my head: What should I write about that my audience will actually want to read? How long should the title be? What kind of keywords should I use? How many keywords is too many? Where can I find an image to use that doesn’t violate copyright? What time of day should I publish my post?

Looking back, I can clearly see that my anxiety about blogging was the result of not knowing my subject matter well enough. But over the last year of working as an inbound marketing consultant and contributing regularly to my agency’s blog, I’ve developed a five-point strategy I’d like to share with you for creating great blog posts.

#1. Write What You Know.

Nothing turns people away from a piece of writing faster than an author pretending to be an authority on a topic he or she clearly knows nothing about. Writing about topics on which you’re an expert is crucial because

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Develop An Enticing Offer To Round Out Your Content Marketing Strategy

During our day-to-day communications with clients and leads, my fellow inbound marketing consultants and I recently started to notice an increase in understanding about how content marketing can help small businesses. While this certainly doesn't apply to everyone, a strong minority of business owners interested in digital marketing are realizing blogging can help fill the top of the sales funnel with prospects by driving search engine users to their websites.

While this is certainly a good thing, it's important to realize there's more to content marketing than a frequently updated blog. After searchers have found your site and read your post, you need to provide them with a next action—-an action that moves them down the sales funnel.

The best way to do this is by adding a call-to-action (or multiple calls-to-action) to each blog post and on the page elsewhere that leads them to a landing page. On the landing page, readers will be invited to access some sort of offer in exchange for some information (usually their name and email address). You can add this new lead information to your CRM and if you use inbound marketing software like Hubspot, you can create marketing emails that are automatically sent to the new lead.

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3 Guiding Principles For Writing Great Taglines

The world's greatest copywriter.

Copywriting is difficult.

Maybe not difficult like digging trenches or performing surgery is difficult, but difficult like singing or pole vaulting is difficult – it looks effortless, until you try it for yourself.

As a digital marketing agency, copywriting is at the heart of everything we do. Websites, PPC advertising, social media marketing, online lead nurturing – in addition to great design, the success of each tactic is made possible by great copywriting.

There’s a very specific type of copywriting that has consistently proven itself to be very difficult to execute regardless of the client’s industry…

Taglines.

Taglines find themselves in a strange position within our evolving digital marketing industry. Where they were once the domain of Ad Men (*ahem – Ad Persons), they’ve expanded their reach to the myriad digital collateral we work with daily. The highly actionable copy of landing pages, calls to action, even blog post titles are essentially taglines adapted to new media.

Over time, I’ve compiled a short list of 3 Guiding Principles For Writing Great Taglines.

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Anti-Social Marketing: What Not To Do on Social Media

On the MMG blog, we often discuss the benefits of social media marketing in supplementing the inbound marketing strategies of small-to-medium-sized businesses. But knowing how to market properly on social media channels requires a basic knowledge of why people are on social media in the first place.

So for this post, I want to take a few minutes and discuss something people don’t discuss that often—the things that really piss people off about social media. Consider this a social media guide in reverse: here’s some advice about what not to do on social media.

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Should you outsource your social media strategy?

With all the buzz around social media lately, more small-to-medium sized businesses are feeling pressure to make sure they're keeping up with the latest best practices as it gets more complicated to market a business via social media platforms.

If you don’t have a full understanding of what it takes to properly plan, create, and execute an outstanding social media marketing strategy, keeping your social media marketing in-house can be a missed opportunity to use these high-engagement platforms for lead generation.

This post explores what's needed to set up and maintain a successful social media strategy in-house along with what you can expect when partnering with an agency.

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Does Your Marketing Strategy Match Consumption Habits?

You see it everywhere. The magazines and newspapers that once had a place next to coffees and donuts everywhere have been replaced by smart phones and tablets. Instead of getting their news once or twice a day on television, folks are connected to media 24/7 in the age of Twitter, Facebook and RSS feeds.

The rapid decline of print media has been well documented, and now it appears the Internet is on the verge of passing television as the No. 1 source of news among Americans. A recent Pew Research study indicated television news is "increasingly vulnerable" and "losing its hold on the next generation of news consumers." And as you can see from the graph (via The Atlantic) from the study, these declines have been accompanied by a rapid increase in online news consumption:

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