The Lean Content Marketing Blog

How to get more return on investment from content

Reach escape velocity through lean content marketing

These are the slides of my talk at the Product Summit last week in San Francisco. Some say “good products don’t need marketing”. But from researching the problem you plan to solve to building the initial community around your product and evangelizing your market, content is involved all the way. So how can startups and small product teams be efficient and impactful with their content strategy?

Ally Greer‘s insight:

Some key takeaways from an awesome presentation by Guillaume on Lean Content Marketing:

Marketing Matters!

The myth that not all startups need marketing is simply untrue.

Marketing is more than just talking about your product.

Though publicizing product launches, updates, and new releases is a part of marketing, it doesn’t do the trick on its own, but content marketing can be costly and time-consuming. The solution?…

#leancontent

  • Leverage SlideShare presentations to share your vision
  • Guest post to distribute your ideas
  • Answer Quora questions that relate to your field
  • Curate content relevant to your expertise

See on www.slideshare.net

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"Slugging it out:" Building A Consulting Firm in a New Market

According to small business consultant Elynn Fish (and almost every business owner out there), “slugging it out” as a small firm in a new market isn’t easy. Some of the most important things in building a consulting firm include getting and keeping clients, creating cash flow, and convincing your prospects that they need your services.

Last Thursday in the grand return of #scoopitchat, I teamed up with Elynn to discuss some best practices for developing a small consulting business in a digital world.

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The Book Revolution

Books are the vessels for some of our earliest learning and repositories of our earliest information. Consider epic poetry (Dante’s Inferno), folklore (Grimm’s Fairytales), tales (Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales), and religious texts (the Bible, Tanakh, To Te Ching). We turn to books for wisdom, knowledge, and contextual information for an incredible multitude of things, from basic definitions of words to esoteric compilations of opinion about the proliferation of algae.

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6 Things The Smartest Brands Do To Win People Over

What marketers and Internet professionals can take away from these two examples is that the best idea always wins, not the biggest budget or the most over-the-top content.  The “best idea” is the concept that most effectively identifies the best strategic things to communicate to a target audience through the most appropriate, natural channels, and then executing the idea in a meaningful, authentic, and value-adding way. If you do this correctly, a simple 520 word editorial could have more positive impact for your brand than a $500k major conference keynote.

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Scrappy Storytelling with K.Tighe

Recently, we had the pleasure of hosting a meetup at Scoop.it HQ in San Francisco about a new concept we are developing in tandem with the community called #leancontent. Roughly, #leancontent is an evolution of content development and content marketing strategies.

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Websites don’t kill newspapers, people kill newspapers.


The newspaper. One of the most sacred institutions of the publishing world and one of its oldest, most respected methods of knowledge gathering and collection of popular opinion, dating all the way back to the first printing presses ever created. There is something uniquely special about waking up, grabbing the paper from your front steps in your slippers, and reading about the world over a cup of coffee. Even your cat standing directly in front of your face so you must crane your neck while trying to read about a local celebration or tragedy is endearing.

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It’s That Time of Year…

“A loving heart is the beginning of all knowledge.” – Thomas Carlyle

February is all about letting your loved ones know how you feel, and for us that means you.

To show our love this month, we’re lifting the topic creation limit: for free!

All you have to do is ask! Send an email to business@scoop.it and we’ll grant you access to unlimited topic creation – but only for this month, so don’t waste one minute!

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Fundamentals of Impactful Speech

Some say that President Obama’s inaugural address this year trumped the one he delivered four years ago, and perhaps any he has ever given as Commander-in-chief. I am a strong advocate of women’s and gay rights, and I teared up when the president boldly said:

It is now our generation’s task to carry on what those pioneers began. For our journey is not complete until our wives, our mothers, and daughters can earn a living equal to their efforts. Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law – for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.

Regardless of what you think of him, Obama is a powerful speaker. His skills were only amplified by the inauguration ceremony, which was held on the day when we celebrate the great civil rights leader and orator Martin Luther King, Jr. In this digital age, we talk about what makes a good blog post, viral video or paid advertisement, but we often disregard the importance of impactful verbal communication. Like memes, there is an intangible essence to what makes a powerful speech stick out and intrigue you to the point where you can’t help but share it. From presidential addresses to stories told generation after generation to live theater, the tradition of oral history harnesses the power to move the masses. It is a testament to the abilities of the human mind that through the spoken word you can form a movement, change the public’s perception and cement a legacy. It is the stuff that wise men, do gooders and evil doers are made of.

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The Big Problem With Facebook's Graph Search: Privacy Constraints | Fast Company

“If the future of search is likely to be social, the future of social is likely to involve more search.”

This is a post I wrote for Fast Company on the conflicting tension I immediately saw following the launch of Graph Search by Facebook. Facebook’s new search tool will either have to remain private, resulting in limited, biased content, or make private data accessible to search.

Here’s why.

See on www.fastcompany.com

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Twitter as a tool for learning

Social media often gets a bad rap for being a driving force behind people falling out of touch, neglecting in-person relationships, and reducing productivity for people around the world. Naysayers blame it for shorter attention spans and proliferation of bad grammar, and the most vehement of those naysayers believe that social media has led to privacy being a thing of the past. To be fair, there have been many times where I’ve been trolling my Twitter feed only to be thoroughly horrified by TMI moments and tHingz Speld lIKE THIZ.

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Students of All Ages Must be Trained to Curate Content

“Students of all ages must be trained to search, select, qualify (and therefore disqualify), then enrich with their own thought, and then use and share information.” – Marc Rougier, Co-Founder, Scoop.it

From Daily Edventures:

Educators often see the Internet as a double-edged sword. While the Web provides nearly limitless information on any given topic, that information is often unfiltered, unedited and unfocused. That’s where Marc Rougier and his company, Scoop.it, come in. While their tools were originally created to help marketers and entrepreneurs increase their online visibility, the company quickly discovered that teachers and students found the curation tool invaluable.

“Since the explosion of Web 2.0,” Rougier says, “we live in a world of information overload: everyone has become a producer of information.” This abundance of information, according to Rougier, has generated a double problem: “If everyone can speak, to whom should I listen?” (a problem of qualification of information — extracting the signal from the noise), and “If everyone can speak, how can I get heard?” (a problem of acquiring visibility, reputation, and a voice).

Here, the mission is to get students aware of the importance of information management — to let them really touch, first hand, the challenge of qualification and organization of data – whatever their subject of study. We live in a world of information abundance and (almost) information democracy. Yet, if we are not prepared for it, we can be force-fed by a very small amount of data (a unique video seen a billion times…) and even by false information, and let a vast amount of valuable data be wasted. Students of all ages must be trained to search, select, qualify (and therefore disqualify), then enrich with their own thought, and then use and share information.

See on dailyedventures.com

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7 Ways To Make Your Brand Look Terrible On Social Media

Ally Greer‘s insight:

2012 was quite the year for social media blunders. From American Apparrel offering a 20% coupon to help the victims of Hurricane Sandy deal with their “boredom,” to #McDStories to the worst hijacked hashtags, some brands proved that they need more than a few tips.

It’s time to be frank. Here are 7 ways to make yourself look terrible on social media. (Pro tip: you’re not supposed to do them.)

See on www.businessinsider.com

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How Google Author Rank could change content marketing… and journalism


Here’s a little piece of SEO nerdery that affects us all: Google is using Google+ to influence search results in a big way, and brands and media organizations alike have yet to wake up to the…

gdecugis‘s insight:

Erin Griffith analyzes how the use of authorships combined with Google+ is now impacting Google search results.

This change is not new but, as she puts it, it is significant: “Google was always about the algorithm, not curation, certainly not curation through something as, well, human as a social network. The emphasis before was about what was on the page not who wrote it.

While she focuses on the new importance of authorship given by Google, what’s happening is actually a mix of a couple of things which are in my opinion equally good:

  1. Authorship
  2. Social results

#1 means that an identified, reputable author will prevail; #2 is part of the social signal that Google uses more and more to rank results and that builds on curators’ activity.

Bottom line is that – as I predicted a while ago – the age of low-quality content cheaply produced by random anonymous writers in content farms for pure SEO purposes is over. By combining a measure of the author’s influence as well as taking into account curators’ appetite for a piece of content, Google is bringing quality back in the game. Which is good for authors, curators and… readers.

See on pandodaily.com

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Thinking Differently About New Year’s Resolutions

The New Year’s resolution is such an interesting, inspirational concept. The fact that we’ve institutionalized a specific time of year to be introspective and reflect on how we lived our last 12 months of life is a pretty incredible thing — definitely an institution to respect and make a priority as we ring in 2013. Identifying which things in our lives were good and which things could have been improved should be top-of-mind when the clock strikes its respective 12:00 AM across the globe on January 1st, 2013 and signifies the start of a brand new year. I’ve always felt that a “resolution” may not be the most effective use of the insights we glean from reflecting on our last year. I’ve always felt pressure to do more things, or different things, or change my life trajectory in a significant way with each list of resolutions I’ve written. In 2012, it was “learn a new language,” in 2011 was “read at least 30 books,” and 2010 was “get a job that doesn’t suck.” I’ve always felt compelled to make a firm decision to either do a new thing or break some terrible old habit.

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Be Discovered in 2013 via Content Curation and the Interest Graph

My name is Ally Greer. I’m a marketer with expertise in content marketing and curation. You’ve probably never heard of me.

With over 500 million users on Twitter, 175 million on LinkedIn, and over a billion on Facebook, you probably haven’t heard of most people on the Internet. The bad news is that this also means most of those people probably haven’t heard of you either.

That said, I’m certainly not here to tell you how flooded the Internet is and discourage you from jumping into the information pool. In fact, I’m telling you to do the exact opposite. Although it isn’t likely that all 500 million people on Twitter will be following you by the time you’re finished reading this (or ever), there are a few ways to look what we call “information overload” right in the face and use it to your advantage.

In a digital world characterized by an overwhelming amount of noise, everyone is struggling to find relevant content from people and brands with an expertise on a specific subject. Content curators are the ones who step up to the plate.

According to Michael Brenner, cofounder of Business 2 Community, content curation is the process of identifying relevant content for your audience from multiple sources, modifying or editing that content to reflect the needs of your audience and delivering the content to the appropriate channels of distribution.

The truth is, you’re probably already curating content. Do you share links on Twitter? Do you Retweet content that you find interesting? Do you write blogposts referencing content that’s been created by others? If so, you’re a curator. You know what you’re talking about, you know where the best content on your topic of expertise is, and you put it together for the world to see. But, the question still looms: if no one knows who you are, how will they find it?

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7 Reasons to Love the New Scoop.it

You may have noticed (or maybe not, because they are so awesome to use) that we recently rolled out some big changes to the Scoop.it platform.  Firstly, don’t panic. Secondly. you’re going to love them. We had you (and your success online) in mind while designing them, and we’ve done some intense testing with the new features and the beta testers are just as excited as we are. All the changes make the platform better — allowing you to accelerate and grow your visibility on the web and truly shine.

The changes are all awesome; giving you more control over the look and feel of your topic pages, deeper access to your social networks and more seamless connections between your various social properties.

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Scoop.it Unveils Newly Re-Designed Platform to Give Professionals and Business the Visibility They’ll Need to Survive in a Post-Apocalyptic Business Environment

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE [San Francisco, CA — December 11, 2012] — Scoop.it, a leading social media and content curation platform for professionals and businesses, recently announced it’s platform redesign, elements of which focus specifically on increasing visibility for its community of users after Dec. 21, 2012, the commonly-accepted “End of the World.” “We realize that […]

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The New SEO Rules in a Content Marketing World


Five years ago, SEO was all the buzz. Today, it has shifted to “content marketing,” which aims to create stories humans want to read and engage with. – The above chart is a good summary of this trend.

gdecugis‘s insight:

Shane Snow makes a good summary on Mashable of the trends impacting SEO these days. We moved from a machiavellian approach to game Google to influence-based content marketing because social media changed the game as others have observed before.

The success of Social Content Curation is a good example of that trend: human sharing and curating content beat the system and become such an important trend that Google had not only to change their algorithms but also start a social network just because of that.

See on mashable.com

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5 Key Lessons Learnt from 2 Years of Content Marketing

This evening, we were happy to host the co-founder of the awesome social media tool BufferApp, Leo Widrich (@LeoWid), who shared five awesome lessons that he’s learned over the last two years of developing his very own content marketing strategy.

At the time of its creation, Buffer App didn’t have any users and its two young founders tried relentlessly to get any tech blogs to cover them. When this didn’t work, the co-founders asked themselves, “if no one else will write about us, why can’t we just write about ourselves?”

Since Leo was the “marketing guy,” he was charged with putting out as much content as he could to spread the word about Buffer App. Two years and a highly successful social media app later, Leo has learned some of the most important lessons in content marketing:

1. Pick Quantity over Quality

2. The Hidden Power of Images

3. Copy and Steal

4. Help 1 other person with each piece of content.

5. Show your passion and culture

Read more on leancontentmarketing.tumblr.com

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The end of fame (as we know it)

I gave this talk at TechWeek L.A. (where else on such a topic?) last week as I felt the new social media evolutions, particularly the rise of the interest graph, are making things move quickly on that subject.

Why do we remember famous people in history? How? How about today’s celebrities? And how are the Internet and the Social Web changing that now?

A look at the fame creation process tells us it is indissociable from the media creation process, which has been deeply impacted by new information technology. The Andy Warhol prediction is probably no longer valid and we need to rethink fame in the context of a distributed Internet network which more and more becomes topic-centric and no longer people-centric.

See on www.slideshare.net

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Every Company Can Be a Media Company. And should be.

“If there’s a universal truth in the digital age it’s that there’s too much content and not enough time to consume it. Naturally, a challenge this large and far reaching is creating opportunities for innovators.” writes Steve Rubel of Edelman on the new LinkedIn Tought Leaders section.

He goes on to explain how Scott Beale of Laughing Squid is a great example of using curation to become a media that serves the purpose of developing a company’s brand in the age of online media. 

The lesson here is that any company can potentially benefit by thinking and acting like a media company (…) However,you don’t necessarily need to create original content.

Great case study.

See on www.linkedin.com

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Let’s Talk PR: #scoopitchat returns with Jeff Domansky

For this week’s #scoopitchat, we’ll be joined by Jeff Domansky, also known as @ThePRCoach.

As Principal of Peak Communications Inc, Jeff Domansky works with clients as a public relations and social PR consultant, C-level strategist, communications coach, content marketing expert, curator, crisis communications manager, contributor to blogs and publications, and connoisseur of other words starting with C. You can see his bio on LinkedIn.

Make sure to follow @allygreer, @scoopit, and @ThePRCoach, and we’ll “see” you all on Twitter tomorrow at 11am PST!

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How Elynn Fish Jumpstarted her Consulting Business with Curation

Elynn Fish started her career in the corporate business world. Before the dominance of social media, she was part of a think tank building internal digital communications platforms. Fish was a pioneer in the social movement, helping companies increase their performance and ROI via content marketing and optimization of both internal and external digital communications.

Not even two years ago, Elynn realized that she had the knowledge and experience to start her own firm helping small businesses with their digital communications. With that, she started the Fish Firm, a consulting company that helps said businesses with strategic elements including content management, ROI measurement and analysis, and sales.

Elynn came across Scoop.it and content curation while following and experimenting with the latest trends in social media. Always on the brink of new digital strategies, Elynn was one of the first Beta testers of Scoop.it, using it with her very first clients.

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How Curation Got Jody MacPherson on TV on Election Night

When PR professional Jody MacPherson first started her personal Scoop.it page on politics, she had no idea that she would end up on TV.

The political world around election time is just about as fast-paced as fast-paced gets. It’s easy to get lost in the number of tweets, blogs, news sites, facts, and not-so-factual musings. Today, social media is arguably one of the biggest influencers of elections and political opinions.

During the most recent election in Alberta, Canada, Jody MacPherson discovered that this is both a great and an overwhelming fact. Jody is passionate about politics and was part of the political party who was challenging the current administration. Knowing how difficult it is for most people to follow along and find all of the right (and factual) information, and being a PR professional by day, Jody found that curation was the next logical step to help her spread her political mission.

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Sharing the Best and Most Relevant Info: Common Goals In Curation and Education

Though “Curation for Education” may sound like a small niche market, we found during yesterday’s #Scoopitchat that there’s always something to learn for everyone.

We were joined by AP Human Geography professor Seth Dixon who had many very inspiring and thoughtful insights into the use of curation in the classroom. Seth has been using Scoop.it in his college classes for over a hear and a half and has found it to be his favorite piece of technology for education.

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