The Lean Content Marketing Blog

How to get more return on investment from content

Articles by Ally Greer

4 Great things I learned as a community & content marketer

By this point, as a reader of this blog, it’s not unlikely that you’re familiar with my story. I was hired straight out of college as a community manager by Scoop.it and have spent the last few years diving into the worlds of community and content marketing on behalf of this awesome brand. As I prepare to move on to my life’s next adventure, I’d like to share some of my key learnings about community management and content marketing with you.

A majority of my day-to-day responsibilities at Scoop.it could fall under the umbrella of “non-traditional” marketing, which means that I put forth a lot of effort to learn about the space I had been thrown into. Today, I’ll share four key learnings and observations on community management and content marketing and I’d love to hear how you feel about them as well.

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4 Years of Professional Growth & Good Vibes, Curated

Dear Scoopiteer,

Ally here, as usual, bringing a special newsletter-themed design to the Scoop.it blog today, mostly because I have some news to share with you.

I started a college internship at a brand new company called Scoop.it on June 15th, 2011. Exactly one year later, on June 15th 2012, I started as a full-time community manager. Just about two years after that, in May of 2014, I took over the role of Director of Community & Content.

Now, after four amazing years, I’m turning in my Scoop.it hoodie (not literally, though, don’t worry) and taking on a new adventure.

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Create great content by leveraging your analytics

content marketing analytics

It’s 5:02 a.m. on Friday as I am writing this. The dog is on the floor licking…something (he likes to lick a lot!) and my wife is asleep beside me in bed.
The last 10 minutes have gone something like this:
• What’s happening on Twitter? Boring.
• How about Facebook? Someone else got engaged. Yay for them.
• Any new emails? Delete. Delete. Inbox Zero!
• Hmm…

Source: blog.bufferapp.com

We’ve all been where Bryan Harris was when he wrote the above introduction to this post. As bloggers or content marketers, we always hear that voice in the back of our heads.

When are you going to just sit down and write that post? What are you even going to write about? How are you going to actually make an impact with the finished product?

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ROI or RIP: The Lean Content Marketing Handbook for SMBs

lean content marketing handbook

Some say content marketing is only for people with deep pockets, and that short of creating Star Wars, you’ll struggle to make an impact. We happen to disagree.

Over the past three years, we’ve been diligently working with SMBs to find success with content marketing via our products, our blog, a Meetup series, and endless conversations with clients as well as subject matter experts. The results of this work have added up the lean content marketing ideology, which is the practice of optimizing content strategies in order to create the highest impact with the least amount of time and resources.

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Thank You, Community Managers!

Dear Community Managers,

A few short years ago, the term ‘community manager’ snuck into business world. Companies were rushing to find themselves one, even though they might not have even been sure what exactly he or she would do once she came along. Some of us have been doing it forever (since before the title was even created!), and some of us have just begun. Regardless of which of these categories you fall into, we at Scoop.it have one thing to say: thank you!

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Content & Community Management: The Perfect Pair

Two of the most up-and-coming job titles floating around the tech world these days are content marketer and community manager. My professional journey happened to start with one and lead to the a combination of the two, and I’m not alone.

As community managers, our job is to make sure that the community dedicated to the brand or product that we represent feels satisfied, proud, and willing to spread the word. Having a suite of content specifically dedicated to community management efforts can be more useful in this area than you may imagine.

I talked to a few top community managers to explore how they have integrated a content strategy with their community strategy and what they had to say was quite interesting.

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What you read: 2014

As 2014 comes to a close and we’re all getting ready to ring in 2015 with style, let’s take a look back at what you read on the Scoop.it blog over the last 12 months.

These are ten of our top performing posts from the last year – the ones you liked, shared, commented on, and maybe even learned a little from. Join me on this trip through 2014 via this blog and maybe you’ll find a hidden gem you didn’t even know existed.

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Scoop.it Secret Santa: 4 New Templates!

Happy holidays, Scoopiteers!

As you probably know, a few months ago we launched Scoop.it topic page templates in an effort to encourage personalization and of curated content. You have been experimenting with our first edition templates and making your topic pages look beautiful since then, and we want more!

Today, we’re excited to announce four more templates to be used on Scoop.it topic pages. And, that’s not all. One of them was designed by Scoopiteers Bang2Joom! Without further ado, here is your winning template, Fashion:

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6 Email Marketing Secrets from Marketo

According to research performed earlier in 2014 by Gigaom and reported by eMarketer, email marketing is still the most commonly used method of digital marketing, with a whopping 86% of respondents claiming to use it. If that’s not enough, though, over half (59%) of B2B marketers surveyed by HubSpot say that email marketing is the most effective channel for generating revenue.

With this in mind, I’ve taken an extensive look at Marketo’s Email Lookbook 2014 with the goals of pulling secrets, tips, and email marketing best practices from each section of the report and sharing them in an easily digestible way. (To read the whole report, click here!)

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Scoop.it’s CEO speaks about algorithms, features, and the future

Today, we hosted our first Ask Me Anything with Scoop.it’s CEO Guillaume Decugis via Google Hangout and TweetChat at #ScoopitAMA.

As we recently introduced the new Smart Suggestion Engine (see http://sco.lt/9N7CV7), we had many questions focusing on this new feature including:

– What are the two coolest features of the new Scoop.it Suggestion Engine?
– Why did you decide to focus on improving the discovery tool?
– What was the progress of the suggestion like from the beginning?
– What does the algorithm behind the gold & silver badges look like?
– What’s the future of Scoop.it?

For those of you who missed it, check out the video:


Have more questions? Tweet them to us @scoopit #ScoopitAMA so we can address them next time.

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Content Marketing Hubs Will Take The Lead in 2015


SEO expert Jayson DeMers nails it with his content marketing predictions for the upcoming year.

In case you were wondering whether or not to take these predictions seriously, check out the post Jayson wrote last year around this time predicting the trends for 2014. Almost all of them proved to be true, with the small exception of the importance of Google+ due to SEO things like Authorship (which was discontinued a few months ago).

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#ScoopitAMA: Ask Me Anything, Scoop.it CEO Edition

Did you ever wish you could get inside the brains behind Scoop.it? Now’s your opportunity! Next Wednesday, December 10th at 10am PST, we’ll be hosting a live Google Hangout with Scoop.it’s CEO, Guillaume Decugis and myself to answer all of your questions and provide a look under the hood of Scoop.it.

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Report: SMBs Turn to Content Curation for Increased ROI


As the beginning of the end of 2014 approaches, marketers are likely reflecting upon the last year, the trends that have caught on, and the trends that haven’t. At this time in 2013, the digital marketing world was abuzz about content marketing and content curation. Over the last year or so, marketing experts have been debating how much importance content curation should have within a content marketing strategy.

With over 1.5 million freemium users on our platform, we decided to take a closer look at what the data says for small businesses who have been using curation over the last year. The findings were quite interesting, especially when comparing the returns of content creation vs. the returns of content curation with respect to how much investment is put into them.

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Your Business Blog Sucks. Here are 6 Reasons Why.

“Content is king!”

“Content is the new SEO!”

“Content is the new PR!”

What isn’t content these days? You hear about it all the time, you know you have to do it, you might even be doing it. But, are you doing it right? Just because you’ve started a blog, doesn’t mean you’re a content marketer. Don’t worry, though, I’m here with a few reasons why your blog might suck and some tips to change that

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Community feedback: asking is just the beginning

This morning in the always fast-paced tweet chat run by Buffer, an interesting topic came up that I feel is often overlooked by community builders and brands. The subject of the conversation was Nir Eyal‘s Hook Model, which essentially helps brands build habit-forming products.

A question was raised concerning how to figure out the current pain points of users of a platform or product, and the number one answer, of course, was to “ASK!!!”

Asking is, of course, the first part of the answer to this question, but it certainly isn’t the only one; and I don’t even think it’s the most important one. Having led community input efforts for Scoop.it’s redesign last year, I learned the importance of the next two steps of the community feedback loop.

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10 Scoop.it Hacks You Might Have Been Overlooking


Building a product is fun. Building a dynamic platform is even more fun. Did you know that Scoop.it has the best engineering team in the entire world, and that they put out a new release of the platform almost every week?

In each of these releases, there are little new features and hacks that aren’t always announced. Some are data-backed and meant to help our team figure out what works and what doesn’t within the platform, but others are little gifts to you, the curators, and I’ve compiled a few so that you can all get up to date on what you might have been missing.

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The Problem With “Staying Relevant”

I tend to find inspiration in strange places. Last week, I was listening to a podcast with a few of my favorite stand-up comedians expecting nothing more than a few chuckles. Interestingly, they began talking about what it’s like to be a comedian in the age of the Internet and the pressure to “keep their personal brands alive” and “stay relevant” with fresh jokes on a more consistent basis than they can write.

As comedians, these two were put off by the notion that everything online these days is about marketing, whether it be your product, yourself, or even your jokes. One of the quotes that specifically inspired me went something like this: “Everything online is marketing these days. Why can’t we just make good stuff and then people who like it will watch it?”

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How You Can Prepare for Twitter’s Potential Upcoming Changes

Twitter strategy might be shifting and the implications for our personal and business experience could be profound.

Source: www.businessesgrow.com

If you’re in social media marketing, you probably cringe at the mention of the word EdgeRank. I know I do, because it makes me think of how frustrating it is that even the best of my brand’s Facebook content might not be seen by more than 200 or 300 of our 57,000 fans unless I spend money to promote it.

Brace yourselves, social marketers, because algorithms just like Facebook’s EdgeRank might be coming to Twitter. In this post by our friend Mark Schaeffer, you can learn about some of the reasons why Twitter is thinking about implementing this, including the pressure from investors now that Twitter has gone public.

Mark brings up some great points for both sides like the fact that, with so many active users, “an unfiltered news stream can seem overwhelming,” but one of the best things about Twitter is that it’s completely unfiltered because  it allows for news to break in real time; something we see happening more and more each day.

According to Mark – and most marketers including myself happen to agree – Twitter will ultimately end up implementing an algorithm that determines what updates you see depending on elements like trending topics and interaction history, which will make organic reach plummet which would effectively eliminate the main differentiator of Twitter from Facebook.

What can do you, then, to prepare for this change?  

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16 B2B Content Marketing Stats You Need to Know Today

Jeff Zabin, CEO of Starfleet Media and celebrated business researcher, recently released his 2014 Benchmark Report on B2B Content Marketing and Lead Generation. The report was created with the intention of “provid[ing] a rich, up-to-date snapshot of how B2B companies are creating, licensing and utilizing content assets in their incessant quest to demonstrate thought leadership, raise brand visibility, and, perhaps most importantly, generate qualified leads.”

B2B content marketing is a unique field that’s still constantly developing, and this report has some important insights into it’s current state as well as where it’s headed. I’d recommend reading it for yourself, but in the meantime, I’ve pulled out some of the most interesting statistics and findings.

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10 Inspiring Quotes From the Best B2B Content Marketing Experts

One thing I pride myself on – and you’ll know this if you’ve read anything I’ve written in the past – is always continuing my quest for new knowledge. One of the most important parts of working in a field that evolves so quickly is keeping up with the trends and the experts.

If you’re a content marketer, digital marketer, or B2B professional in need of some inspiration, I’ve got some for you. Read, learn, be inspired, and share!

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Scoop.it’s Next Template Designer Could Be You

Last week, we announced lots of exciting new features on Scoop.it, including WordPress integration, topic embeds, and templates. for topic pages.

Now, we want to hear from you. We’re firm believers in the old (ok, not that old) adage “you are the content you publish online,” and the increasing importance of branding the content that you’re sharing to your websites and social media feeds. As we continue to grow as a platform, we want you to tell us how we can make this branding process easier for you.

Over the next few weeks, we want you to put on your creative hats and submit some designs of templates you’d like to see on Scoop.it for your topic pages. 

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5 Ways to Beat Content Marketing Overload

This intensive guide created by Vocus was inspired by Mark Schaefer’s infamous Content Shock theory of a few months back. He essentially states that soon, there will be too much content for anyone to stand out and that marketers need to start taking actions to combat this unfavorable outcome sooner than later.

I’d recommend content marketers to read this entire guide and note some of the tips inside, but here are a few of the key takeaways worth noting.

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Important Stats You Should Know from Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends Report

Last week, Mary Meeker of Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers presented her Internet Trends report for 2014 at the Code Conference in California. Each year since 2001, KPCB has partnered with some of the best data analysts in the country to create a comprehensive report of rising Internet trends across all industries. This year, the presentation resulted in a 164-slide deck that you can read in its entirety here. Since we’re fans of tl;dr analyses & content curation, though, here are some of the most important points from the first half of the report.

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