The Lean Content Marketing Blog

How to get more return on investment from content

Articles by Pam Neely

Want to be a successful content marketer? Do these 10 things

want-to-be-a-successful-content-marketer-do-these-10-things-scoop-it-final

You want to do content marketing. Profitably. Efficiently. Without having to study it for months first. No problem. We’ve got your to-do list. These are the data-backed best practices of the most successful content marketers: 1. You have a documented content marketing strategy Ever heard of “to fail to plan is to plan to fail”? […]

Read More



How to get started with content marketing – and succeed

how-to-get-started-with-content-marketing-and-succeed-scoop-it-final

If you’ve been on the fence about trying content marketing for your business, but are finally ready to give it a try, this is the post to read. It’s written for you bootstrappers. We assume your marketing “team” is one person. We figure your budget is more garage band than Fortune 500. And we understand […]

Read More





7 ways marketing automation can make content marketing more effective

7-ways-marketing-automation-makes-content-marketing-more-effective-scoop-it-final

Content is the fuel of marketing automation. It’s the core product the machinery of marketing automation delivers – content that’s served up at the right time, to the right person, with the right message. That mix of right timing, right person, and right message is what can make content marketing so effective. But it’s something […]

Read More

Don’t just publish better – publish smarter

dont just publish better publish smarter

“It doesn’t matter how fast you’re running if you’re going in the wrong direction.” That’s a loosely paraphrased sentence from Pat Flynn’s book “Will It Fly? How to Test Your Next Business Idea So You Don’t Waste Your Time and Money”. There’s a lot of wisdom in that statement for content marketers. It distills how […]

Read More


15 actionable tips to be a more efficient content marketer

15 actionable tips to be a more efficient content marketer

Got marketer’s overwhelm? Boy, are you not alone. While we’re living in one of the best times ever to work in marketing, everything about it is evolving fast. There’s content to create, audiences to build, a new social media platform every year (or more) and a dozen different skills and software applications to master. While […]

Read More

Content performance is more than clicks and shares: how to track metrics that matter

content performance is more than clicks and shares

Ever heard the story about the guy looking for his keys on a dark street? Someone comes by to help him and asks where he dropped his keys. He says, “oh – over there, in the alley.” The other guy says, “So why are you looking here, under this streetlight?” And the man looking for […]

Read More

How to format your blog posts for better readability and SEO: 11 effective tips to improve engagement

how to format your blog posts for better readability and SEO

Engagement is quite the buzzword in content marketing right now. It’s signaling an evolution that’s affecting both content marketers and their audiences. There are two reasons for this shift: The first: smart content marketers have learned that just publishing content more often won’t work. Drowning an audience with more and more content they aren’t engaging […]

Read More



The best tools to amplify your content marketing results for long-term success (6/6)

best tools to amplify your content marketing content marketing lifecycle amplify phase

There’s no escaping the fact that we live in an era where content marketing is simply everywhere, with 88% of B2B marketers reporting the use of content marketing in helping them to achieve their business goals. Yet despite its growing popularity, many marketers today still struggle with how to do it effectively, with an alarming 30% of […]

Read More

7 ways to keep your social media feeds streaming with awesome content

how to keep your social media feeds streaming with awesome content

Social media accounts are hungry creatures. They have to be fed, but keeping them fed can be time consuming. Trouble is, unless your job title is “social media manager”, you’ve probably got other things you should be doing. So you either add some hours to an already long workweek, or you: Share less on social […]

Read More

The ultimate list of tools you need to analyze your content (5/6)

best content marketing tools to analyze your content 5th phase content marketing lifecycle

Content marketing is the ultimate way to connect with your audience and build brand awareness. It allows you to tell your own unique story and increase visibility around your product or company. Content marketing is an ongoing cycle whereby success comes from continually optimizing your efforts in every phase of the content marketing lifecycle. It’s also considerably hard […]

Read More

The most effective distribution tools to promote your content (4/6)

the most effective tools to promote your content

It goes without saying that content marketing has become standard practice for companies in today’s digital age. When it works, it’s an incredibly powerful way to build relationships and exchange knowledge without overtly pitching your services or products. We know it works, we know its many benefits. Yet what many marketers don’t know and struggle […]

Read More


10+ of the best tools you need to produce better content (3/6)

best content marketing tools for the production phase

While content marketing is a powerful opportunity to build loyal relationships with your readers, it requires a lot of time and energy to do it successfully. Content marketing is a challenging, ongoing process that requires optimization at every phase in order to succeed. In today’s nonstop digital world that content marketing has quickly taken by storm, marketers’ need […]

Read More



The best content marketing tools for the planning phase (2/6)

the best content marketing tools for the planning phase content marketing lifecycle

Earlier this month, we listed the best content marketing tools for the strategy phase, the first phase of the content marketing lifecycle. We discussed how content marketing is a powerful opportunity to build a loyal audience authentically, provided you’re willing to invest the time and effort it takes to do things right. In order to succeed with content […]

Read More

The best content marketing tools for the strategy phase (1/6)

best content marketing tools for the strategy phase content marketing lifecycle

Content marketing has a lot going for it. For starters, if you’ve got some content creation and promotion skills, it can be done nearly for free. It’s also a great way to build a trusting audience – if you can be patient while that audience grows. But like anything, content marketing has its snags. It takes […]

Read More

Outsourcing content creation made simple: 5 [easy] ways to find the right freelancer

outsourcing content creation doesnt have to be hard if you do this

A long time ago, I managed up to 20 freelance writers at a time. They helped me create content for a series of niche websites. I learned a lot hiring them and working with them. If you’re struggling to create enough content in-house, it might be time to consider hiring some freelance content creators. If […]

Read More

How to find awesome content your email subscribers will love

how to find awesome content your email subscribers will love

Are you sending out email updates to promote your new content? If you are, give yourself a pat on the back. Because most marketers aren’t. This was one of the biggest surprises we found after surveying 1,038 SMB marketers on their content marketing best practices and analyzing the results using our Content Marketing Grader tool. Only 29% […]

Read More

Quantity vs quality: why a balance is key to content marketing success

quantity vs quality why balance is key to content marketing success

This is one of the core questions content marketers struggle with. How you answer it will shape your content strategy, your budget, and more. No content marketer answers this question in the same way. Even on this blog, there might be some dispute. Depending on your budget, your audience, or your business model, you may need […]

Read More

3 proven ways to amplify your content marketing efforts

3 proven ways to amplify your content marketing efforts

Content marketing is tricky. It’s fairly easy to set up the rudiments of a content marketing machine, but getting it to turn a profit is another beast entirely. The reality is that many companies are just barely breaking even. That’s a tough spot to be in. You’re doing just well enough that you don’t want to […]

Read More