What One Brand Did After It Created a Top 10 Blog

What One Brand Did After It Created a Top 10 Blog

Up until that point, we merely invited readers to consume our blog content, which focused on the latest social media trends. We published lengthier e-books, practical templates, and how-to guides; we also posted blog content pointing to those premium assets. Our premium content brought thousands of downloads and our email campaigns turned into a sizeable amount of free trial activations and subscriptions. Conducting content experiments We hired one full-time and one part-time “social media scientist” to test long-held social media myths that we were antsy to see proven right or revealed to be completely off base. And during that time, our lab experiments got social media shout-outs from some of the biggest names in the industry. In the development world, it’s common to have weekly sprints. In marketing, we set monthly sprints. At the beginning of the monthly sprint, we all get on a call to count the points and assess whether we’ve over- or under-extended ourselves for the month. As a team, we run through our Asana tasks at each month’s sprint kickoff meeting and retrospective. No one post can provide all relevant tools in the space.

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What would you do with a blog that averaged 150,000 monthly views?
Do tons more to drive leads, our team decided unanimously back in 2016.

Up until that point, we merely invited readers to consume our blog content, which focused on the latest social media trends. Readers were free to enter and leave the premises at any time. We didn’t ask for visitors’ email addresses in return for access. Even if we wanted to use in-your-face dropdowns begging for an address, we had no special content to offer.

Resolved to do better, in 2016 we began creating premium content monthly. We published lengthier e-books, practical templates, and how-to guides; we also posted blog content pointing to those premium assets. And we hired a full-time inbound marketing expert to generate leads through landing pages and nurture those leads through an evolving set of email sequences.

The results came quickly. Our premium content brought thousands of downloads and our email campaigns turned into a sizeable amount of free trial activations and subscriptions.

Still, we were restless. Was this the best we could do? Within a year, we knew we were ready for something more … something bigger. Yet instead of going deeper into the funnel to garner more sales, we chose to focus on the top of the funnel. We came up with a content initiative that would establish us as thought leaders. And rather than build out our current content site – which had thousands of daily readers – we launched a new blog with zero traffic.

While our existing blog had just won a coveted spot on Social Media Examiner’s Top 10 Social Media Blog list (and was a great conversion engine), it lacked that “oooh, let’s see what Agorapulse says about topic X” factor. Our writing was solid, well curated, and helpful for social media managers, but it wasn’t definitive.

In our space of social media marketing, we felt being definitive wasn’t merely pontificating about a new announcement from Google or commenting on how to use a new feature on Instagram. Becoming a definitive source meant taking the time to see if an original idea holds up in practice. That sounds a lot like the scientific method, doesn’t it? It only made sense that we called the project Social Media Lab.

Conducting content experiments

We hired one full-time and one part-time “social media scientist” to test long-held social media myths that we were antsy to see proven right or revealed to be completely off base. These scientists spent…

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