Welcome to the week!
It’s Memorial Day in the USA and so many of our regular readers will be taking a pause from work to remember the sacrifices of those who have work the uniform of the United States armed forces.
For others around the world, though, Monday has arrived with its typical weight after a weekend in the sunshine. Now it’s back to the office, back to the screen, back to that corner of Starbucks where the noise is diminished but not totally gone, and just perfect for working.
Wherever you are starting your week – or even if you are in the US and not starting your week staright away – here’s what you need to know to start the week off right.
The Rise of the Machines
If there’s a word that keeps popping up on my Twitter feed these last couple of weeks it’s ‘chatbot’. Whether it’s Mark Zuckerberg telling the world how Facebook Messenger is about to engage with everyone seeking to buy almost anything, through to chat based news, chat based service provision, and chatbots powering B2B and B2C startups raising big money fast.
Part of this stream of news has included a piece by the boss here at DOZ, Anji Ismail, who wrote on LinkedIn about how chatbots will soon be taking the jobs of consultants instead of call center workers:
There’s a reason that tech giants like Facebook, Apple, Amazon and Google are embracing chatbots: the public love them. Anything that helps to smooth the communication and lessen the influx of texts, emails, newsletters, reminders, and phone calls needed to get through the normal everyday tasks that everyone faces is a winning idea. What’s more, if the communication can be automated as with a chatbot it can then be scaled so as to solve the small and repetitive problems that millions encounter daily.
And this is where a conversational user experiencer is so important. The real revolution that arrives with chatbots is that all the actions of clicking and navigating on the internet as we have become used to in the last 25 years could be replaced by speaking and writing, which is something we have been accustomed to for thousands of years. Chatbots will help make our technological interactions more human once again.
But while the consumer facing chatbots have attracted much of the press attention, the business facing chatbots that are already emerging and will soon emerge are set to revolutionize the way that business-to-business enterprise is conducted.
If you haven’t already read his piece, check it out – and then let him know what you think in the comments, too.
[Classic Avril Lavigne Reference]
So you want to build a content marketing strategy.
You start with your goals and targets, throw in an editorial calendar, think about social media, hire some consultants, get a community manager, track this, measure that, analyze everything, A/B test…it’s a lot of work and it can get confusing.
But it doesn’t have to be. As new research from the Harvard Business Review suggests, a content marketing strategy doesn’t need to be complicated in order to succeed:
If we want more effective content marketing, we have to get smart with strategy. No one has unlimited marketing resources today. We can’t afford to do everything — and we shouldn’t anyway, as consumers are already overwhelmed by all of the content in front of them. To blindly create content that further crowds an already noisy online marketplace is irresponsible. We have to be more strategic if we want to produce better content. Even if that ultimately means producing less of it.
The HBR explains that keeping things simple and answering the basic questions of who, what, where, when, why, and how are the basis for an effective content marketing campaign. It’s a good read and, hey, it’s Harvard – you should read it all.
Imgur After Reddit?
A few weeks ago I wrote about how Imgur was an interesting image hosting site because it made money, and had always made money:
Not only does Imgur make money today, it has always made money. Founder Alan Schaaf told All Things D in 2012 that the only time that Imgur was ever ‘in the red’ was when he paid the original $7 for the domain name. Since then the site has relied on fundraising, donations, a short-lived premium service, and advertising to stay profitable.
That profitability might be under pressure now, however, with news this week that one of Imgur’s primary sources of traffic, reddit, is launching their own native image hosting service. Here’s what Ars Technica wrote:
Image-hosting site Imgur could lose a lot of page views and revenue if enough users favor Reddit’s tool. In a statement to TechCrunch, Imgur emphasized the strength of its own community and how Reddit users can still upload with Imgur if they please. “This isn’t a surprise. Tools for uploading images are an expected part of any platform these days,” the statement says. “While Imgur started as a simple image-sharing service, it’s evolved beyond that and is now a massive community of people sharing and discovering the most awesome images from all around the Internet. We’re super focused on our mission to surface up the world’s most entertaining content and making Imgur the best visual community in the world. That said, nothing will change for Reddit users who would like to use Imgur to share their images on Reddit.”
Imgur seems confident that their community will get them through the inevitable drop in traffic from reddit, but I’m not so sure. When the ‘front page of the internet’ moves people off Imgur voluntarily at first but, one imagines, mandatorily at some future point, Imgur will have to be on their game to avoid losing their revenue stream.
This Week on The DOZ Blog
We are all over the world and all over the marketing dial this week on The DOZ Blog. Tomorrow you’ll find a guest post from one of our DOZ experts on how to rock your social media world, and on Wednesday we’ll take a look at how marketing is helping to solve a political problem for people in the land Down Under. We’ll take a look at how backchannel marketing can help deliver results for a business, and we’ll round out the week with a look at how to prepare your business for wedding season. It’s jam packed, and as always there’s a ton of value to be shared.
Want More Marketing Goodness?
Every Monday morning DOZ delivers the best marketing content directly to inboxes around the world. Subscribe to DOZ’s Marketing Monday for a generous serving of the best in digital marketing, SEO, and the tactics and strategies to drive your business forward this year. Want in? Add your name to the list and start your week a little smarter.
Time to Get to Work
Know a great piece on marketing that we missed? If so, let us know and we’ll share it with the world, crediting your good self, of course, with the tip. Send your sources straight to Content Manager Dylan and you could be featured in next week’s Welcome to the Week post.
Maybe you’re spending your Memorial Day grilling franks on a barbecue, maybe you’re gathering with family, or maybe you’re in the office and only getting a glimpse of the outside world from your window. Wherever you’re starting the week, if you keep your eye on the prize you’ll enjoy finishing it off, too.
Welcome to the week – now get to work.