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Selling the story: creating snackable content to build your audience

Last night I had the pleasure of presenting at the Seattle Social Media workgroup – an eclectic and lively group of entrepreneurs and social media practitioners.

As I was prepping my remarks I reflected on how my PR job has changed from influencing content to publishing content. These days I spend more time reviewing our own copy and editorial calendars than pitching angles to established publications.

Yet in both cases, it boils down to the same thing: we are selling the story. And as I reflected, it’s striking how much the desired path mirrors the funnels and waterfalls used by my sales and marketing counterparts down the hall. The call to action is different: my ask is simply to read and comment.

Lead nurturing begins at first touch, where ever it may be: YouTube, Facebook or our blog, Conspire. But with content marketing the idea, not the product, is king. The hand off to marketing occurs when the audience has bought into your ideas and wants to learn more. They click a lead form or visit the website at the very bottom of the communications funnel. Not surprisingly this is often the top of the sales funnel.

Last night I unveiled the Mindjet –Jess3 “Between the Minds” case study which highlighted our spring social media campaign. The goal was to add to our Facebook following, increase their engagement, and to have that engagement continue on to a longer form discussion via our blog.

Art met science. The art was creating engaging, snackable bits of visual content for Facebook and the blog. The science was the distribution of that content through our social media channels and how smart well placed advertising amplified the organic reach and impressions of that content.

The campaign netted impressive returns with 400% increase in blog traffic, 3300% increase in Facebook impressions and 41% increase in earned media.

Want to know how we did it? Here’s a behind the scenes look at how it all came together.

Like what you see? Feel free to embed this SlideShare on your own site with the code below:

[sourcecode]<iframe src="http://www.slideshare.net/slideshow/embed_code/14439343?rel=0" width="427" height="356" frameborder="0" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" scrolling="no" style="border:1px solid #CCC;border-width:1px 1px 0;margin-bottom:5px" allowfullscreen> </iframe> <div style="margin-bottom:5px"> <strong> <a href="http://www.slideshare.net/Mindjet/between-minds" title="Between Minds " target="_blank">Between Minds </a> </strong> from <strong><a href="http://www.slideshare.net/Mindjet" target="_blank">Mindjet</a></strong> </div>[/sourcecode]

In the digital age, content increasingly plays the role of brand ambassador. Make no mistake about it. There’s some selling involved to get your audience to “look at this”. The content needs to be digestible and inherently interesting. When done correctly you get a campaign like “Between the Minds” which had our audience turning to us for more information. In the end, we both won.