Ready to transform your digital marketing playbook for 2024?
In this episode, which I could also name "If I Were Your Fractional CMO 2024 Edition," I take you through the essential strategic digital marketing investments to make for 2024. From search to email and social media, I offer my advice on where to focus your resources for the biggest impact.
On this episode I play the role of navigator to guide you through the ever-shifting digital landscape, as we chart the course towards maximized investment returns. In this episode, I'll guide you through the maze of search engine dynamics, showing you how to refine your content to resonate with the latest trends. It's not just about keywords; it's about crafting a textual content library that speaks directly to user behaviors.
Switching gears, we'll tackle the powerhouse that is email marketing, offering insights into lead magnets that are not just shiny but truly magnetic in attracting subscribers. As we delve into the sophisticated world of automation flows with the help of platforms like Klaviyo, you'll discover how to navigate the recent turbulence caused by email titans such as Google and Yahoo.
But wait—there's more.
We'll tie the knot between email and social media marketing, revealing how to channel the 'e-commerceization' effect through smart tactics like the 'link in bio'. This is more than just a conversation; it's a strategic session focused on the nuanced art of platform-authentic content and the indispensable value of first-party data collection in a world waving goodbye to cookies. Prepare to engage, convert, and retain your audience like never before.
I hope this episode provide you valuable insights and actionable advice to help you make informed decisions for your marketing strategies in 2024.
Whether you're a marketing professional, entrepreneur, or business owner, this episode is packed with valuable information that you won't want to miss. Tune in to gain practical tips and strategies from your digital marketing coach, Neal Schaffer, as I help you navigate the ever-evolving landscape of digital marketing.
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2024 is off to a great start, but how is your marketing doing? Where should you strategically invest your time, your money, your resources in this year to get the biggest bang for your buck? Well, this next episode is going to be my annual. If I were your CMO, here is where I would invest your budget. Episode on this next episode of the Digital Marketing Coach podcast.
Digital social media content, influencer marketing, blogging, podcasting, vlogging, tiktoking, linkedin, twitter, facebook, instagram, youtube, seo, sem, ppc, email marketing there's a lot to cover. Whether you're a marketing professional, entrepreneur or business owner, you need someone you can rely on for expert advice. Good thing, you've got Neil on your side. This, Neil Schaefer, is your digital marketing coach, helping you grow your business with digital first marketing, one episode at a time. This is your digital marketing coach and this is Neil Schaefer.
Hey everybody, neil Schaefer here, your digital marketing coach, and welcome to my podcast. This is an episode that I would normally be recording right when we start the year a little bit late this year, if you haven't noticed, the podcast release schedule has been a little for lack of a better word all over the place. This episode actually gets me caught up and going ahead. In the future, barring unforeseen circumstances, you will be seeing me in your podcast feed every Wednesday morning. This episode is all about if I were your CMO because I am a fractional CMO. Let's take a step back. If I were your CMO, here would be my advice for you this year into how you should invest your budget. Now, before we get into my advice, I want to bring up my AI tool of the week. This week, I am going to be talking about Jasper. Jasper is probably the most definitive platform tool for any content creation textual content creation. It also supports image creation, but really its strength is in textual creation. What's really cool is that Jasper already provides you a number of templates. The number of templates is actually in the tens, if not over 100 by now, whether it's a Facebook post, an Instagram caption, an Instagram thread, a LinkedIn article, a LinkedIn post, a photo post caption, a Pinterest caption, a Reddit post, a Snapchat caption, a TikTok caption, a tweet, a Twitter thread or ads or blog posts or email campaigns, landing pages, press releases Jasper has you covered. What's really awesome about Jasper because they're currently, I believe, the leaders in textual AI content generation is that they also have something called a brand voice. You can upload your blog posts, your content that you've written, and it will analyze it and try to mimic it in the content outputs that it gives you, so that, even though you're using AI, it sounds as if you had said it yourself. Go to nealshafercom slash Jasper that's J-A-S-P-E-R, and you can get a free seven day trial. Once again, nealshafercom slash Jasper. All right, it's 2024, and imagine it's January 1st and we're working on a budget. This would be my advice for you Looking at the trends and looking at my own clients and where I see your investment can have the biggest impact. Now I will be announcing, as I say with every episode, my new book. I am now in the process of preparing the audiobook and the companion workbook. If you join my launch team, you'll be able to get that companion workbook for free when it comes out. Make sure you go to nealshafercom slash newsletter so that you're signed up to my list to find out about that. I divide digital marketing, as your digital marketing coach, into three main containers. I've already published an episode about marketing containers. You have to go back several episodes that again was published for the purpose of fleshing out content for my book. The way I look at digital is. I like to simplify it. I look at it as search, email and social. There is an order of things. When you read the book, you're going to find out why I have these things in this order. I want to cover each one of these areas separately because I think these are the three strategic areas. If you think about anything that you do in digital marketing, it is probably going to be contained in one of these jars or buckets. Search is an interesting one because we're starting to see this evolution of search. I am starting to see traffic coming from chat, gpt, traffic coming from perplexityaia tool that I talked about in my review of the PodFest, a conference that I went to that I have started to use as a very, very intelligent search engine. I recommend you try that as well. We also know that TikTok has become a search engine for Gen Z. We know that YouTube is a search engine for some as well. The concept of search engine is discoverability. Out of all that, now, depending on your demographic, if you were really chasing after Gen Z, tiktok just might be more strategic than Google. A year from now, perplexityai may be more strategic than Bing or Yahoo. I don't think it's going to surpass Google anytime soon, but who knows right? Nevertheless, the concept of being found in search is the ultimate way that the public gets to know about us, and that's why search is so critical. We always have to be appearing in search in all these different areas, and the only way to do that is if we have content and if we're creating content strategically for those keywords, creating the library of content that I have talked about in previous episodes as well. So, with that in mind, we need a textual library of content. If you've been in business for a decade, you probably have it. If you've been in business for a decade and have tens of that hundreds of blog posts, have you gone through and really confirmed, just like you did, the keyword research a decade ago? Have you confirmed there's really a need for that content today? Are you missing out on any areas of content. Have your blog posts lost traffic over years? Because there's new competition. So there's always a need to renew this library of content. I do mine on a quarterly basis. You can do yours on an annual basis, but it's time to reinvest. If you haven't done that recently, if you don't have a library of content, you obviously need to invest in that content creation. But today, because we have the emergence of TikTok and we have YouTube, I would say it's time to begin to replicate that library of content in video format, both long form for YouTube and short form for TikTok and YouTube shorts. So for every blog post you might be able to create a few short form videos. But it's really the same idea of building a library of content in video format. Now we also have audio format. There are not nearly as many podcast listeners. I mean, I applaud that you're a podcast listener, I'm a podcast listener. But ask 10 of your friends outside of social media if they listen to podcasts. You tell me how many you think would say they listen One, two, three, four, five max. But if you ask them how many of you videos or read blogs, it's going to be a lot greater eight, nine, 10. So that's why the audio isn't as important. But the video podcast gives you the ability to create those videos and if you strategically align the video podcast with your library of content, with the topics, the keywords that you know there is search demand for that you know your audience is interested in, you can kill two birds with one stone. But either way, you need to build a video library of content. This is something I'm struggling with as well that I look forward to investing a little bit more. I think the tools have become sophisticated enough that it is becoming easier and easier to generate these Alex Formosy type of videos, but we need to have the raw video content in order to do that. Yes, we can use AI generated content for video, but people content is always going to perform better, period. It's AI on the inside, human on the outside. We always need to remember that. So we can use the AI. There are tools right now I'd say the definitive tool and I talked about this before a tool called Opus Clip. Go to neilshaffercom slash Opus to start trying it out for free. That's OPUS. It's become sort of the definitive tool for taking a long video of yours and finding pieces that I think is going to be engaging and then creating these short form videos for you. It's what a lot of marketers and influencers use and it's really easy to use, and there are upcoming platforms trying to compete with it with even better algorithms. So that is from a search perspective. That's where I'd be investing this year. I would also have a little R&D. I've already talked about this in my digital first mastermind. If more and more people are using AI search engines like Perplexity or ChatGPT and Perplexity in particular will give you the sources of where it is finding the content. It'll tell you the prompts that it used in the search engine and then the sources. How can you get your content featured when the AI provides recommendations? I would do some R&D. It's doable. If you'd like some advice, feel free to reach out to me, neilshaffercom. I have a lot of ideas around this. I don't have time and the resources to do it now. If I did, I would do it because there might be a way to look at what do the AI search engines look at when it comes to deciding what content they source? We're gonna hear a lot more about this throughout the year. We're still very early days, but if I wanna do a little bit of R&D, I would have a resource work on that, all right. So that is the search part, the discoverability part. Then we have the email part, one of the themes that I am looking at this year, and I don't have a name for it. It's like the e-commerceization, think e-commerce. If I were Amazon, what would I do? Or if I were an e-commerce site, I mean pick your favorite Sephora Well, sephora has physical stores as well. I mean, pick your favorite brand that you purchase online from, that you subscribe to their emails, what would they do? What would their approach to email marketing be? And I don't care if you're B2B, you can take the same approach. Their approach is they have a lead magnet at the beginning to entice you to sign up, to give you something of value, which is normally a 10% discount. They have a sophisticated I mean look at Clavio as an email marketing platform. They have become the gorilla of email marketing tools for people that have e-commerce stores on Shopify. They do more than just Shopify. But look at what they call flows. These are automation, automation recipes, and you'll see obviously abandoned cart welcome series. I urge you to actually go through and look at the pre-developed flows or automations that they have and then look at how many do you have, how many do you do? And yeah, you can do a abandoned cart. Even if you're B2B, there's still a concept of a shopping cart or a landing page that they went to where they didn't convert. So the challenge for email marketing and I know you obviously need to get your email account verified there's been all this. Google and Yahoo are gonna change the way they do that and it's funny because I already had that verification for some time and I believe most enterprises did. If you're a small business, reach out or you're an entrepreneur, reach out to your email provider and ask them for advice. I did this with ConvertKit. Convertkit now has an automated tool that guides you, so that was really really helpful and unverified. It hasn't changed anything. But really, the two themes where you want to invest this year in email marketing is, on the front end, the lead magnet, and really come up with a robust library of lead magnets that provide immense value that you can A-B test. I can't summarize it any better than that. And on the inside, more and more automations, not for the sake of automating and not to spam people, but automations that truly make sense and that's why think like e-commerce and once again, look at the clavio flows and I think you're going to get an idea. You know that the idea of being able to add those flows to my email marketing automation so easily, because most other platforms don't do it as easily I've been enticed to think about. Maybe when I start selling my book, I launch a WooCommerce store and maybe I start to use clavio for the WooCommerce store, but I also use it outside of that for my blog as well, and maybe I bring ConvertKit over to clavio. So it's the e-commerceization of the website for email. Hope that makes sense. You're going to hear me talk more about that later this year in my book. All right, that's the email part. That's relatively simple, right? But the devil's in the details and I really want you to focus in the details so that you get a higher number of people that come to your website. You do the SEO, you get all the traffic. How do we get the number of people that opt into your list? How can we improve it by 0.1%, 0.2% and therefore now we have an audience that we can communicate with directly and we can also retarget, because, with cookies going away, the only cookie we can rely on is our first party data. The only way to get first party data is to get people not only on our website, but to get them to opt into our email list. All righty, it's my advice. And email Move over to social media. Social media a little bit more complex in the conversation, in the email, but as I talk about the e-commerceization of email marketing for social media, I want you to think about Instagram. Now, when Instagram first came out, a lot of social media marketers like myself and we're talking a decade ago right, we're sort of frustrated because we were used to the Twitter, facebook, linkedin, where there was a link and therefore the link can generate traffic on a post-by-post basis. But really, really savvy brands and influencers are getting a lot of traffic from Instagram and TikTok. And how are they doing it? They're doing that from one link or a link in bio, which might lead to a link tree, but the idea of every post is to get people interested in clicking that link in bio. It is the linking bioization of social media, for lack of a better word and that really becomes one of the things I'm going to talk about in the book as well. Which is related to this is a concept called platform authentic content, and there's other terms for this, like zero-click content. It is a term that Amanda Nativedat over at SparkToro, one of the most brilliant minds in digital marketing today. She was the originator of that and I look at it slightly different, calling it platform authentic content, for a few different reasons. But the whole idea being on social media is to engage, because that's why people are on social media, and creating content that will entice people to click the link in bio is the only way forward, because traffic generated from social media declines year to year. Go back and listen to how my business did in 2023 and go back to listen to how my business did in 2022. It is a battle that you're not going to win. But if we look at it very, very differently like the influencer that gets people to click that link in bio we begin to see things very differently, the way we focus in social media. So if we can't do that directly, what are the other concepts related to social media that I want you to focus on? So the link in bioization is a different spin on content. It's creating more engaging content for the sake of keeping social media users on the platform. This is not link-based content, now. I still do link-based content, but on Instagram and TikTok you can't. So if you can take that same approach to all of your social media, I think, at the end of the day, you're gonna end up performing a lot better. And then, once in a while, when you add those link posts on a LinkedIn, facebook or Twitter should you still be on those platforms, I think you're gonna get more traffic by posting less of those, because the algorithm is gonna favor your content because of all the previous engagement you've got from the LinkedIn bioization content that I recommend. Two more areas, though. When it comes to social media. Now, these are trends that I've talked about over and, over and over again, but user-generated content is gonna be one of those areas. Really investing more deeply into being able to generate user-generated content I don't care if you're B2C or B2B, there are ways of doing it. There's some blog posts on Nealchafercom. Go there, do a search for UGC. I have a blog post on 17 actionable UGC strategies. I have a chapter in my next book that's going to be dedicated to this, and you should have listened to the previous podcast, episode 353, where I interviewed Catherine McCauley all about UGC. We talked for like an hour, so there's a lot of advice out there for you, but really focus hard on that. That is going to make your social media more engaging as well, and it's gonna help you begin to build the relationships with content creators. That is going to come to the other concept that I really want you to focus on for social media marketing, which is a brand ambassador. I look at user-generated content brand ambassador, then external influencer marketing. By the way, these are all separate chapters in my next book, so give me two or three months and you'll get more details. But the fact of the matter is, if we can move from our organic social media content containing the content of our fans, our customers, in user-generated content. I guess it's not a dream to say that we can't convert these people into becoming brand ambassadors In the building a program that incentivizes our fans to always be creating content for us, to always be talking about us, to act as our influencers. But we already have a relationship with them and we know they have brand affinity for us, so that's the direction I want you to go. I really want you to build a brand ambassador team this year and it begins with the user-generated content, in finding ways to incentivize that, and it begins with re-imagining, taking a reset on how you do social media marketing from link-based content to content that constantly reminds people that you're there and drives them to that link and buy. So I hope you enjoyed this advice and if you need any help implementing this advice I don't talk about this a lot. I don't like to do too much self-promotion of what I do, but as your digital marketing coach, I do have a fractional CMO service which we can work together, one-on-one, or me together with your team, either physically or virtually, and I have my digital first mastermind where you are always welcome. It's currently full right now. I am going to be expanding it in the near future, but you can go to neilshaffercom slash membership sign up to be on the waiting list, and I am looking at bringing in new communities at a lower price point to be able to help you as well. So make sure you go to neilshaffercom slash newsletter to sign up for that so I can keep you posted. Well, that's it. I mean there's a lot of work to do, so I'm not gonna keep you from doing that work. Let's make 2024 our best year ever when it comes to our marketing efforts and I look forward to hearing what you think about my advice and a few months from now if it worked. If it didn't work, let me know neilshaffercom. Once again, thank you for all of your subscriptions as podcast, for all of your reviews tagging me on social media talking about the podcast. You all rock. I do this for you and I can't thank you enough. So this is your digital marketing coach, neil Schaffer, signing off.
You've been listening to your digital marketing coach. Questions, comments, requests, links. Go to podcastneilshaffercom Get the show notes to this and 200 plus podcast episodes, and neilshaffercom to tap into the 400 plus blog posts that Neil has published to support your business. While you're there, check out Neil's digital first group coaching membership community If you or your business needs a little helping hand. See you next time on your digital marketing coach. [(l banana watching show hours afterlines)].