The Inbound Marketing Week in Review: Content, Video, and Links

Inbound Marketing Resources: Content Sharing, Video, and Linking

The Inbound Marketing Week in Review

I have discovered several resources and thought I would share four of them with you in this week’s Inbound Marketing Week in Review. We will also discuss the current take on link building and link baiting.

One of the resources is a super application that will help you track content and build links. Another is a new Adobe Air application for video, very much like CoolIris (PicLens) for video. The third is a video sharing platform that allows you to build your own channel with videos from YouTube, Vimeo, and others. All three of these resources will make you more effective and efficient as an inbound marketing consultant.

The fourth one is one of my favorites, Animoto. Animoto is a video marketing, production, and distribution tool well suited for an inbound marketing consultancy’s needs and those of our clients.

The combination of Tynt Insight and Shufflr, iSofa.tv, and Animoto will make your life easier and allow you to wow your inbound marketing clients while building your inbound marketing consultancy…taking it to the next level.

I will also take some time to discuss linking.

Linking, particularly link building and linkbaiting, have received a lot of attention during the past week or so in inbound marketing circles. Interestingly, linking has also been a topic of interest on many of the premier inbound marketing blogs, as well as across the Internet marketing niche. Two big launches over the past week or so, both having to do with linking and social media (a crucial ingredient in link building), have taken center stage.

The fact is, linking (link building and linkbaiting) should of interest to anyone hoping to build a substantial following online, rank well with the various search engines, and serve your inbound marketing consultancy’s clients well.

The resources and topics mentioned above will help you, directly and indirectly, with your inbound marketing consulting business. If you give them half-a-chance, I believe you will find that they will make your life online a lot easier. I am certain they will reduce the amount of time you have to spend on certain tasks and, as a result, increase your overall effectiveness.

Time and Inbound Marketing

As you know, the most precious resource any of us have is time. If you are anything like I am, there just aren’t enough hours in the day. I am wrapping this up after midnight on Sunday night and this has taken the better part of the weekend to put together…and this is just one of many tasks accomplished this weekend. I am not telling you this to pat myself on the back but to let you know that you and I are a lot alike.

You see, I know one thing, if you are reading this you are dedicated to getting the most out of your time and serving your clients to the best of your ability. If that takes working at midnight on Sunday or 3am on Saturday morning?

So be it!

It’s like I used to tell my kids when they were competing in athletics:

If you want to rise to the top, always remember one thing: When you are resting, your competition is working out, working harder, working longer, trying to do it better, faster, and more effectively. Everyone needs rest but if you rest too long, if you don’t keep focused on where you want to be, on the goal you have set for yourself, you will never get there.

Or, when you do finally get there, you will find your competition got there long before you.

I’ve always loved a line I heard George Burns say years ago. It was one of those deadpan lines only he could get away with.

He said:

“I hate sleep, it’s a waste of time. I’ve never known anyone to make any money in bed!” And then he paused as only George Burns could and said:

“Well……..”

That was one I didn’t share with the kids.

Inbound Marketing and Productivity.

Anything that makes me more productive is worth checking out. If it measures up? I apply to my life and to my businesses. The four resources above (described in detail below), and several others I mentioned last week, and others I will mention in weeks to come, have passed that test and are now part of my inbound marketing consulting business…and my personal life. Significantly, the resources and techniques I’ve mentioned  and will mention in upcoming weeks have added to my overall productivity, have saved me time and money, and have improved my effectiveness.

And that’s a good thing!

The Inbound Marketing Resources

Tynt – The first resource I discovered this past week and will share with you is one I really like.

I am now using Tynt Insight in my inbound marketing consulting business and on several of other business and personal sites. I have added it to several niche-specific sites for e-commerce and for various info and affiliate products we offer through The Ultimate Internet Image.

The resource was recommended by David Siteman Garland. David recommended several resources in a blog post on his blog, The Rise to the Top. The blog post I came across is entitled 10 Smarter, Faster, Cheaper (And Useful) Web Tools For Entrepreneurs and it is worth the time to look over.

If you’ve tired to copy and paste anything from The Ultimate Internet Image you will see, first-hand, what I am referring to. Just copy a line of text and paste it into the Twitter or Ping.fm dialog box and you will see what I mean.

Later though, not right this minute. OK? Because the other resources are just as useful.

Once again, Tynt Insight is the name of the resource and it will be useful to inbound marketing consultants and to anyone else interested in tracking their content and building quality backlinks to their website or blog.

You will already be familiar with some of the resources David recommends in his blog post, tools like HootSuite, but others will be new to you and will undoubtedly increase your efficiency whether you are an inbound marketing consultant or are in some other business. The 10 web tools are all useful and many of them are free. If you can’t use them, perhaps you know someone else who can? We are all struggling to be more efficient and be as productive as possible, particularly in the inbound marketing field, so take a look…and pass them on.

Shufflr – The second resource, Shufflr, is a social media video browser. As the message on the home page explains, it helps “videos find you.

The thing I like most about Shufflr is that it automatically provides access to videos matching our viewing habits. We can take this a step further and track videos specific to an inbound marketing client’s target market. This gets better because we can also access most of the popular video sharing sites from a single platform and all the related videos with it.

Significantly, this is a fairly new application and more sites are being added all the time…so this will continue to get better as you become more familiar with it.

As stated on the parent company’s blog:

“Shufflr makes video suggestions based on users’ social media footprints and viewing history. The social video feed makes it convenient for users to find out what their friends [competitors] have been watching and the buzz feed keeps them clued in to what’s trending on the web [and in a specific niche or market]. Shufflr brings a personalized-TV-like experience to online video.”

All you have to do is check this one out and, if you use video as we do for inbound marketing clients here at The Ultimate Internet Image, you will find it extremely useful.

Let me know what you think. OK?

iSofa.tv - The third resource is iSofa.tv and it is awesome! iSofa.tv is a very useful, very different kind of video sharing platform.

The great thing about iSofa.tv (the link to John Zajaros’ personal channel) is that you can set up any number of channels and then propogate the channels with videos relevant to that channel. Then, whenever someone goes to your url, they will see the videos you have propogated the site with.

And it’s free…as are Tynt and Shufflr!

So, you can provide your inbound marketing clients with several channels, all loaded with their own YouTube videos or with related videos from YouTube, Vimeo, or other approved sites…all relevant to their product or service.

You can also create your own videos for personal use, as I have demonstrated here, or to promote your inbound marketing consultanting firm.

It doesn’t get much better that this.

How’s that for integrating a well-known USP?

iSofa.tv offers complete flexibility, unlimited channels, and it’s free.

Additionally, the site’s founder, Bruno Pinaud, bpinaud is very responsive to requests for assistance and there is a video tutorial that walks you through the set up process on their help page.  I am not an affiliate but I am a fan and I think if you check this one out you will discover, as I have, that this is a very nice resource for business and personal use.

Again, check it out and let me know what you think.

OK?

Animoto – Animoto is last but certainly not least. I can honestly say Animoto has revolutionized my inbound marketing consulting business and has allowed me to create awesome videos for clients with very little effort.

Very little effort after spending hours uploading images, learning my clients’ various businesses, getting comfortable with my Flip MinoHD camcorder, my Nikon digital camera, and the Internet that is.

Now? It’s easy!

All kinding aside, Animoto is quite easy to use and delivers incredible videos in a three step process that takes no more than 15-20 minutes. Then, all you have to do is wait for Animoto to do its thing.

I would suggest the pro version. Animoto Pro offers several advantages including:

  • Full-length videos
  • All videos licensed for commercial usage
  • No Animoto branding (very professional)
  • Free access to their music library
  • Unlimited HD upgrades
  • Embedding and sharing available
  • An clickable link built in at the end of the video with a customizable message

And here is the biggest advantage, with the Animoto Pro version and you don’t run the risk of TOS violations.

The four resources above are just the tip of the iceberg. I will cover many more in the weeks to come, and they will keep getting better and better.

NOTE: I am not a small pie kind of person! I am sharing these resources because I believe there is plenty of business out there for everyone and if I can help my colleagues and associates build their inbound marketing consulting businesses?

Well, that is better for all of us.

Now, on to links!

However, because The Inbound Marketing Week in Review has gone long, I will abbreviate it somewhat and do an in depth linking post (and video) as part of The Ultimate Internet Image’s ongoing SEO series.

I had planned on doing that all along, but for now, we will cover some of the basics.

Links, Link Building, Linkbaiting, and Inbound Marketing

Links: Linking got a lot of press this week on many of the top inbound marketing blogs and across the Internet marketing niche.

Interestingly, it wasn’t just linking that online marketers were talking about. The topics were link building and, more specifically, linkbaiting. Hubspot has been writing a lot about it for a while now and they seem to have picked up the pace over the last week or so. Hubspot’s activity, as well as interest from the Internet marketing community, created a ripple (viral) effect across the Internet last week.

It’s a safe bet this interest in linking will continue!

As inbound marketing consultants we are all aware of the importance of backlinks and particularly high quality backlinks for relevant, high value (high PR) sites. In the past week or two we have witnessed several launches and the overarching theme has been link building.

The three most important factors in link building and linkbaiting are (this seems to be the current concensus):

  1. Quality content
  2. Social Media
  3. Analytics

When it comes to content, whether you refer to it as “great” content or “remarkable” content or “quality” content, it all comes down to the same thing:

Create quality content often, encourage comments and feedback, and spend a good deal of your time marketing yourself, your Internet real estate, and your content online.

In other words, it is not enough to create and post great content on you website, you have to let people know where it is and why they might find it “great!”

Here is a key point: I believe you must create your own content, at least the content relating to inbound marketing consulting. I believe this is crucial for a number of reasons. It’s necessary for anyone desiring to be a true master of their craft, an expert in the field of inbound marketing. I do not believe it is good enough to outsource content creation and then market the work of others as your own. At least not in the field you are consulting in. And, at least not initially.

As an inbound marketing consultant, it is vitally important that you talk the talk and walk the walk!

Only by creating content and then teaching others will you become a true master of your craft.

If someone else’s personality is shining through?

If the material you are “selling” as your own is not?

You may fool a few people for a little while but ultimately you will be found out and it will lead to your undoing. In order to explain inbound marketing to prospective clients, you must know your craft. The best way to learn your craft is to write about it and then teach it to others.

So, at least in the beginning, take the time to create your own content!

The challenge is, if you write about inbound marketing all day, every day and do not distribute it?

You are going to have a site chocked full of remarkable content dealing with inbound marketing, or whatever you are interested in and/or passionate about for that matter, and absolutely no one will know about it.

You will be a preacher without a congregation.

You have to get your content out there!

Social Media- Here’s where social media comes in, and I would add video sharing as an integral component of social media here.

After all, video sharing sites are considered to be part of social media by almost every social media “expert.” As inbound marketing consultants, we know, or should know, the value of social media and how to get the most out of it.

If you do not?

You should have purchased Don Crowthers Social Profit Formula last week. Social Profit Formula is a social media coaching program. SPF is now closed but I would suggest getting on the waiting list and getting in on it if something opens up. Don has a take on social media that is unlike anyone online today. If this is an area you are weak in? Check out Don’s course. Sign up for notification if he opens it back up…it will be the best investment you have ever made.

Significantly, social media is about one thing and unless you have been on another planet, you have discovered that the real value of social media is in relationship building.

“It’s the connections stupid!”

Another USP used for political purposes, and quite well:

“It’s the economy stupid!”

Well, when it comes to social media? It’s about relationshipsconnections.

It has been noted time and time again by everyone from Seth Godin of Linchpin, The Dip, and Seth Godin’s Blog to Brian Clark of Copyblogger and Teaching Sells training program that 2000 rabid followers will trump 100,000 or even 1,000,000 people who haven’t a clue who you are or what you’re about but are following you “just because.”

I would argue the more followers, the less connected!

Please note, the two social media experts listed above are not the only ones to have made this point, in fact most do, but they are the two individuals I view as real experts…real experts.

One is arguably the most recognizable, Seth Godin, and the other is not but should be, Brian Clark. In fact, I would argue that Brian Clark is one of the smartest entrepreneurs online today. Brian Clark is every bit as bright and insightful as 99.9% of his contemporaries.

In fact, I am always amused by the lists that pop up with the top 10, the top 30, or the top 100 social media experts.

The first question to pop into my mind when I see one of these lists is:

According to whom?

The second question is always:

What are the criteria used for ranking someone as an expert?

I have observed a social media clique emerging and not a little social media snobbery!

But that’s the topic for a rant…not for The Inbound Marketing Week in Review.

The key to success in social media is interaction, and I believe interaction is a two way street.

That means someone with 50,000 followers on Twitter who is following back 17 people is not necessarily interacting. People might like to them speak and they probably like hearing themselves speak.

But that doesn’t make them an expert…and they certainly aren’t listening because they aren’t following!

To interact and to enhance the experience of others is to be engaging and likeable. That means you must make sure your personality shines through, what many in advertising and marketing have referred to as a “ Like-able Characater.”

This is nothing new to inbound marketing…or outbound marketing for that matter.

Developing a “Like-able Character,” being genuinely likeable, is crucial in every walk of life and in virtually every business arena.

In other words, snobs and jerks don’t last!

Dean Rieck noted, writing for Copyblogger:

“There are lots of reasons why people flock to certain blogs, but I think one of the most important is that popular blogs are written by popular people — the sort of people who attract others. And becoming a popular person isn’t just a matter of fate or genes. It’s something you can work on.”

Dean goes on to talk about popularity and quotes Meryl Streep during a commencement address at Vassar in 1983.

Meryl Strep states:

“Real Life is actually a lot more like high school. The common denominator prevails. Excellence is not always recognized or rewarded. What we watch on our screens, whom we elect, are determined to a large extent by public polls. Looks count. A lot. And unlike the best of the college experience, when ideas and solutions somehow seem attainable if you just get up early, stay up late, try hard enough, and find the right source or method, things on the outside sometimes seem vast and impossible and settling, resigning oneself, or hiding and hunkering down becomes the best way of getting along.”

Rieck continues:

“In other words, success isn’t necessarily about competence. It’s often about likeability [sic]. People like to spend time with people they like. The same applies to blogs. Success often depends on likeability. How you come across. Your vibe. Your attitude and personality….And if I were to break this down into specific tips, I’d say there are 7 secrets for making your blog (and you) more popular.”

Dean mentions 7 “secrets”

  1. Have a conversation
  2. Lighten up
  3. Be yourself
  4. Be nice
  5. Get over yourself
  6. Help people
  7. Stop trying so hard

Great advice for all of us. Not only as it pertains to blogging…but also to social media.

Social media is, after all, mini-blogging…isn’t it?

I think a lot of this falls under the umbrella of the Like-able Character. Now, I am not talking about some phony-baloney act, a phony persona. Surprisingly, I have listened as certain Internet marketing “gurus” have suggested, even encouraged, that.

Being phony is the kiss of death because people will see through that in an instant.

Additionally, I would suggest not only getting over yourself…but being yourself!

Crucial! Be yourself. Some people will like you and others won’t. Some businesses will become clients and others will not. If you are yourself, one thing is certain, you never have to remember who you are.

So, be yourself!

All you have to do is look back over the 20 or 30 years and you will see example after example of the Like-able Character concept applied to marketing.

Why? Because it works!

People want to identify with someone who is like they are…or imagines them to be like they are.

Just take a look at this list:

  • Colonel Saunders (KFC)
  • Lee Ioccoca (Chrysler)
  • Dave Thomas (Wendy’s)
  • Oprah – If ever there was an example of someone who built a personal brand from scratch using the Likeable Character model it is Oprah!
  • Tom Hanks – Cleveland, Ohio boy makes good after what shows? Bossom Buddies and Bachelor Party? You gotta be kidding! Tom Hanks clearly built up his Likeable Character image. Of course, it didn’t hurt him that he is a Likeable Character. Being genuinely likeable is definitely what put him on the road to fame and riches.
  • Seth Godin – Nerds are cool again and it doesn’t hurt that Seth Godin is also brilliant!

There are so many more. I am certain you are running the names of a few through your head as you read this.

If you are still with me?

Success in social media, inbound marketing, business in general, and life is all about connections, interactions, and being like-able.

If you are a Likeable Character?

People will take the time to get to know you, read your tweets and posts, and travel over to your website and take in the content you offer. If your content is remarkable, and good is simply not good enough, you need to be remarkable, they will tweet about it, talk about it, comment on it, and link to it.

Finally, linkbaiting and link buidling are about knowing your audience and that comes from being familiar with the resources available to you as an inbound marketing consultant.

I am talking about knowing and applying analytics.

Analytics allow us to track where our visitors are coming from, how long they are staying, if they are digging deeper into your site or leaving right away, what the trends are, and if they are coming back or not.

Use the following, at least:

  • Google Analytics
  • Quantcast
  • Tynt – How’s that for timing?
  • YouTube Insights
  • Alexa
  • EzineArticles Monthly Summary

Once again, there are many other resources available and we will get to them.

As inbound marketing consultant, they are the tools of the trade and you must get comfortable with them. Testing, metrics, analytics, and so on (statistics) are all part of the business of the inbound marketing consulting business. Yes, it may be the more tedious part but if you can demonstrate results? If you can show your clients where traffic is coming from? That the visitors to their sites they are staying? And, that they are coming back? You know you are on the road to success.

Then it is a matter of scale, ramping the things up that work, getting rid of what doesn’t, and continuing to test and keep track of the numbers…tweaking as you go.

Ultimately, link building, link baiting, and the rest is like planting corn:

You prepare the ground, you plant the seeds, you spend a lot of time tending to the fields with nothing to show for your efforts, and then one day you are standing in corn over your head.

Linking is the same way, if you follow the three steps above and focus on all the little steps in between.

Finally, remember one thing:

It is about the quality of the followers, connections, subscribers, and links…not the quantity! So, plant wisely, tend to your fields, and harvest when the crop is ready.

Then?

Begin again!

Once again, the purpose of The Inbound Marketing Week in Review is not to provide an in depth dissertation on any one thing but to provide an overview and perhaps jog your memory or provide some ideas…an “Oh Yeah!” moment you can build upon.

At 4000 words, I hope you had several “Oh Yeah!” or “Ah Ha!” moments. I appreciate your time and your interest. I considered making this into a PDF and having my subscribers opt-in to read it…but I want to share this with everyone. If it helps just one inbound marketing consultant gain and/or serve one client more effectively…then this is a Win-Win!

I hope that one person is you!

Thank you for stopping by and please leave feedback, your take on what you have read here.

It is appreciated!

Contact me anytime!

John Zajaros
The Ultimate Internet Image
Lakewood, Ohio 44107
Skype: johnzajaros1
216-712-7004
440-821-7018

Comments

  1. Thanks for finally writing about >The Inbound Marketing Week in Review: Content, Video, and Links <Loved it!

  2. Too much here to take in all at once. You really know your stuff. But how to lighten up?

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