Week in content marketing: 6th August

This week we have rather surprising results from a new UK survey into Pinterest users, some advice for companies targeting older demographics via social media and a few tips on how brands should approach mums. There's also an update on how marketers are using new visual platforms Vine, Instagram and Snapchat and a selection of examples from across the globe of Responsive Design for websites.

Major British Pinterest survey - There hasn't been a big British survey on Pinterest for a while so it is really interesting to read the findings of a survey of 1400 users of the service by Starcom MediaVest Group. Not surprisingly, Pinterest users in the UK are growing significantly and between May 2012 and May 2013 unique British users grew two and a half times, from 1.295m to 3.204m (comScore).

Among the facts that the survey uncovered are that Pinterest is more popular with British men than many industry pundits had expected with over 40% of its users male. However sixty nine per cent of all visits are by women, and women spend 75% more time per visit on Pinterest than men (5.7mins vs 3.2mins). From a brand perspective though the really interesting question the survey asked was - what type of brands would you consider following on Pinterest in the future? - with DIY and Craft and holiday and travel brands coming out top.

TED Talk on marketing to mums - Are you a fan of TED Talks?  If you are (or even if you are not) there's a fascinating presentation by Katherine Wintsch, from marketing consultancy The Mom Complex, whose TED Talk  focuses on the complex nature of parenting and how brands can market effectively to mothers. She also addresses how marketers can turn concepts into actionable ideas. There's an in depth discussion of her ideas here and the TED talk is included here.

Storytelling in content marketing - CMA partner Outbrain recently held an event that looked at storytelling in content marketing. The main elements of what was discussed has been written up for Wallblog by Marketing Director of Outbrain Europe, Sarah Gavin. In the article she focuses on the concept of the hero and how it can work for brands. She also stresses the importance of humanising the content and making it both fun and engaging.

She concludes by saying ‘brands must seek to develop narratives which suit them, and give their potential audiences something they really want. Content which simply sells or pushes corporate messages does not a story make, so marketers must consider how they can tell stories in a way that interests and adds value to their readers' life and experience online.'

Brands on new platforms - Instagram, Vine and Snapchat are three of the hottest new social media platforms, and one of the main reasons for their success is that they are instant in delivering content and messages. Marketing Week has a fascinating round up of how brands are using the three services which so far is mainly for short advertising style videos. There are clearly going to be content marketing opportunities for brands using the formats beyond the examples that article lays out, but the writer says they feel like it could be a while before more mainstream brands feel confident enough to use the platforms.

Sharing via social media - Marketing Week features an interesting infographic this week that highlights how more and more people are discovering content through social media sites. It quotes a survey by video search website Blinkx which says that ‘nearly half of people aged 18 to 24 (43 per cent) prefer to use social networks to look for content compared to sites like Google.'

The infographic and the survey results are then followed by examples of how brands are using social media to share content. It makes the interesting point that social media may be even more powerful for brands who traditionally target older audiences as older age groups on Facebook tend to follow fewer brands than youngsters.

Good examples of Responsive Design - One question that many agency designers and tech execs are mulling over is whether to adopt Responsive Design as part of a mobile strategy? If that is you then Econsultancy has a round-up of ten responsive designs from across the planet. The designs are from very different websites too with branded content sites included alongside news agencies and charities.

Choosing a platform -  In a similar vein to Karen's article Business Insider has a feature titled Choosing A Platform-Specific Social Media Content Strategy - The 10 Reasons It Pays To Focus. It suggests that a key problem for brands and business when they approach content marketing is that they develop a scattershot approach with a bit of blogging and tweeting often on a whim. The article then makes the case that smaller companies might be better served by concentrating on one platform and developing a strategy to deliver it. 

Where next for The Huffington Post? - A couple of years ago the Editor-in-chief of the British version of The Huffington Post, Carla Buzasi, gave an interesting and insightful speech at the International Content Marketing Summit about the challenges of online media. If you want to find out what she has been up to in the intervening time then there is an interview with her at The Drum, where she talks about why she thinks the HuffPo UK has been so successful. Buzasi says that ‘readers are no longer passive when they consume media. News has become about conversations. The age-old model of editors prescribing the news and people reading it is going. They now want to comment voraciously, or if not comment themselves they like reading others comments.'

Search and email still best for customer acquisition - Finally Netimperative reports on a survey from US marketing software provider Custora that compares how effective social media, email and search are in converting browsers into customers. It concludes that ‘by far the most popular way to get customers is organic search, according to the report, followed by cost per click ads (in both cases, read: Google).'

Organic search accounted for more than 15% of online customer acquisitions this year. Apparently social media generated 1% of acquisitions, while email did significantly better at 6.84%.

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6thAug 2013

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