Inbound 2016 gave HubSpot the chance to unveil several new products last week, appealing to a wide range of both digital marketing agencies and businesses looking to increase their lead generation and conversion rates with great content.
While many of these tools are updated and improved features that will help entry-level digital marketing agencies build a better lead-in strategy, others cater for the experienced inbound marketer already using the HubSpot platform to provide clients with superior digital marketing campaigns.
As well as attending many of the talks from industry leaders at the Inbound conference, we were eager to see what was coming on to the HubSpot portal that would enable us to enhance the digital marketing campaigns of our present and future clients, and as a content creator, a couple of these new tools in particular caught my eye.
The first is the Content Strategy Tool that promises to help ‘get content right, not just done’. Sounds good, particularly if you spend a considerable amount of time throwing blog ideas back and forth in your head, most of which will never see the light of day. In my own experience, a lot of the time, these ideas just aren’t fleshed out because I’m not sure if they are worth spending even more time on by trying to construct a full blog around them and tailor them to a specific audience.
It comes down not to a lack of knowledge, but to running dry in the imagination department, and as Einstein once said: ‘Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.’
As creating great content on a constant basis is difficult and can leave you running dry of inspiration, what makes it helpful is that the tool offers suggested topics up-front, then validates them to ensure you are investing your time effectively in creating the type of targeted content that will appeal to your audience.
It’s a vast improvement on the Blog Topic Generator that can be pretty hit and miss if you are creating content for a specific industry with a serious leaning such as financial services or healthcare.
The Generator, while very useful for some topics, can bring up results that range from the unusable to the wholly undesirable (‘10 Reasons To Love Regulatory Compliance’ or ‘Think You’re Cut Out For Doing Surgery? Take Our Quiz’ are two recent examples that come to mind).
Search has gone past merely keywords, with consumers entering much longer search terms, so topics are now a main influencer in determining ranking. It’s all about clusters of content, and the tool identifies those topics you need to be writing about based on their relevance, competition and popularity. But that’s not all – it also helps to validate the ideas you generate so you can avoid wasting time on content that doesn’t work.
It wouldn’t be a HubSpot tool if there wasn’t some form of measurement of content effectiveness and analytics involved, and this allows you to measure what content is driving leads and prioritise accordingly, incorporating core and long-tail sub topics that will attract visitors to your site and bring them through the sales funnel until they become leads and ultimately converted customers.
This tool will be available in early-2017.
Another intriguing tool HubSpot are set to introduce is Collect.
It essentially allows you to take clippings you find on the internet and create various forms of killer content based on it. At the moment, you might have a file where you put ideas that came to mind after reading an interesting blog or article, or maybe you just jot them down and plan to come back to them. More often than not, those notes remain where they are put, gathering dust, and are not expanded into great content.
Collect, a Chrome extension, allows you to save those ideas and extracts, use them for inspiration, and insert them into content accordingly. Adding tags means you can organise the ideas you gather easily as ‘collections’.
The most interesting feature of this tool for me is the ability to easily insert an attribution or reference to the original source into your content with a simple click, so there’s no need to go back through the many sources you have looked at to find the relevant piece of info you found so interesting in the first place to get the right link.
You can collect articles, images, video, quotes, audio and even social media posts, and then repurpose them in your own style and to your own ends to create unique content. Handy.
This too will be available in early-2017.
Though these features will be available soon, you should be looking at the best ways to optimise your content and form an effective lead generation strategy right now. The improvements from HubSpot will make things easier, no doubt, but it’s up to you to have your content plan in place when they do come on board.
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