Talking Content Marketing – With Dominique Jackson

Dominique-JacksonTalking Content Marketing welcomes content specialist and blogger Dominique Jackson.

I enjoy what Dominique has to say about the world of digital marketing and the role content plays.

More importantly he has a real personable approach with the content he produces. Everything is aimed to be easy to interpret and in his words, “When you focus on providing the most valuable content possible, you’ll win.”

Here are six questions aimed at the role content marketing plays in becoming influential within your marketplace.

 

Is the cold email approach and companies sending one email message out to everyone to see what sticks one of the coldest, biggest wastes of time for marketers today? 

Yes. I’m seeing way too many marketers these days take the same approach:

  1. Come up with a generic email template
  2. Scrape a list of bloggers to send their emails out to
  3. Use a tool to send them all out

The ones that are a little more advanced will at least use the person’s first name. But even then, the emails are so generic and lack any level of personalization so they still have a very low success rate. It ends up becoming a numbers game. You send out 1,000 emails and just hope somebody responds.

What I’ve found to be more effective is to focus on building real relationship with people. In your initial email to an influencer, you shouldn’t ask them for anything.

Offer them some type of value whether it’s sharing their content with your audience or simply letting them know you appreciated a specific blog post of theirs. Don’t go off into “sales” mode right away, it turns people off.

It’s the equivalent to meeting a guy or girl you’re interested in and instead of inviting them out for coffee or lunch, you ask them to marry you. Ease into things and start slow.

 

You mention in your ‘expert‘ article about the need to read books in order to be seen as more influential. Can reading become a tool for competitive advantage?

Absolutely. The information you get from consuming other people’s content is invaluable.

You’ll start to learn the concepts and skills experts are using and you can start applying them to your own efforts. It’s all about soaking up as much knowledge as you can, and then going back and teaching it to your own audience.

The trick is to put your own spin and interpretation on the content you’re reading.

For instance, people have been talking about how to create visually appealing posts for years. I used what I learned from existing content, combined with my personal experience and created my own piece of content on the topic, “How To Make Your Blog Posts Sexy”.

 

Enjoyed your blog as a resource article. Should businesses think more of their blog as a space for others to take from and become a library of information?

In today’s world where content is king, and content marketing has been proven to be so effective, businesses can’t afford not to take that approach.

The interesting thing is that right now there are so many businesses that aren’t doing it that the few that do really stand out.

Businesses have to stop thinking of their websites as just a brochure for their company. By providing valuable content through blogging, videos, eBooks, whitepapers and other types of media, your site will start to become a utility and industry resource.

A great example of this is Whole Foods. They could’ve easily made their website just a place to showcase their mission and a way for customers to find the nearest location to them. But instead, they decided to make it into a resource by adding recipes, healthy eating tips, and how-to articles. Any business can use the same concept.

 

Which blogs would you never press the ‘unsubscribe’ button?

I have a lot of blogs I really like, but there’s probably a handful that I check every single day, and I’m always looking forward to see what they publish next.

  • Quicksprout
  • Search Engine Journal
  • Rebekah Radice
  • ByRegina
  • NicheHacks

 

How can businesses and marketers encourage more organic traffic without relying heavily on Google and paid media? 

Focus on putting out high quality content and making connections.

There’s always a good chance that a majority of your site’s traffic is going to come from Google searches. The goal is not to rely only on Google and SEO for traffic.

You should also be getting referral traffic from other sites that link to you, social media traffic, email traffic, and even some direct traffic from people who are coming straight to your website. That way, if for whatever reason your site’s rankings drop you’re not completely out of luck.

My Blog Guest is a good example of why you shouldn’t only rely on search traffic. Their site was completely de-indexed from Google over a year ago and they’re still up and running. How? Because popular sites still mention them and they’ve built their brand and name recognition.

Anyone reading this should ask themselves this: If search engines didn’t exist, how would you get traffic to your site?

Whatever your answer was is what you should be doing in addition to using SEO.

 

What is the biggest mistake companies make when it comes to their approach to online marketing?

A combination of laziness and trying to get quick results.

Too many companies and marketers are looking for shortcuts. Going back to the email outreach question, the reason marketers are using the generic emails and mass spamming is because doing things manually takes more time and effort. Instead of taking the time to build and foster real relationships by offering value, they’d rather send out thousands of emails asking for a link.

There’s a big misconception about online marketing. Companies see it as the “easy” way to market. But the reality is that it takes hard work just like anything you’d do offline.

Anyone can setup a website, Twitter account and Facebook page. But very few companies are willing to commit to blogging 3 days a week, tweet consistently and interact on Facebook. If they don’t see swarms of traffic coming in after a couple of months, they give up. You have to be in it for the long run and put in the work, period.


Huge thanks to Dominique for his thoughts and contribution. Hope the Talking Content Marketing library is a useful point of interaction for you.

To connect with Dominique, here’s how to do it:

Dominique’s site: click here

Dominique on Twitter: click here

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