How Videos Can Transform Your Content Marketing Strategy

How Videos Can Transform Your Content Marketing Strategy |

This is a guest contribution from Nathalie Cohen-Sheffer.

From do-it-yourself tutorials to adorable animal clips, videos are a big part of our life – and business owners as well as bloggers are taking notice. Here are seven reasons why everyone needs to incorporate video into their marketing strategy, and the sooner the better.

From consuming news to communicating with our friends, video has taken over. It’s enough to look at the ways in which your Facebook Newsfeed has changed in recent years to know that video is clearly here to stay. In fact, 1.47 million Americans watch videos on the web, while an average user watches at least 16 minute of online video advertising a month. Bloggers, entrepreneurs and business owners have to realize that implementing videos into their content marketing strategy is the way to go.

Video is on a roll, and it’s evident if you look at any social media network today. Youtube, for one, has over a billion users, and social media channels like Facebook has even dedicated its News Feed to the use of video. The social network is pushing for its native video features, including Facebook Live and audience targeting, and sees greater value in a one-minute video than a 500 word article. Instagram hasn’t fallen behind, and has recently announced that they were extending videos on the app to a full minute.

Social media channels aren’t alone, as more business owners and bloggers alike are realizing the many benefits of adding custom videos to their site. If you haven’t already began adding video content to your blog or site, here are the main reasons you should.

It Increases Traffic

Simply put, video increases traffic to your site. In fact, the click-through-rate (CTR) of emails increases by 200-300% when the email includes a video. It’s also been proven that organic traffic from search engines increases by 157% when there’s a video included. No matter whether you’re promoting your personal blog, or your brand, video can bring three times as many visitors to your site.

What’s great about using video in your content marketing strategy is that you don’t even have to be a videography expert of any kind. Platforms like Promo by Slidely help you to create highly sophisticated videos that will increase your site’s traffic without you having to break the bank. This is precisely what every marketing strategy needs in order to get attention, likes, views, and shares.

It’s a Great way to Brand Yourself

Video plays a huge role in helping businesses brand themselves in a certain way. By using video, you’re not only giving your target audience the information they need about your service, product or brand, but you’re also making them as excited as you are about it.

A loyal audience of subscribers to your blog are more likely to become your own personal evangelists, spreading the word about your blog and your general awesomeness. By incorporating video into your branding efforts, you’ll be giving them a glimpse into “the real you,” which can help build their trust in what you have to say and offer.

It’s Motivating

Video has a very serious impact on your audience, making them much more likely to take some sort of action, like search for more information or purchase an item, after watching your video.

In fact, video is so important to your site that nearly 60% of people have said that videos of products have actually increased their confidence in the purchase, making them less likely to return items.

How Videos Can Transform Your Content Marketing Strategy |

It’s Memorable

You’d be surprised but video is more memorable than text. In fact, people only retain about 10% of what they read. However, when they watch a video, they’re using both their auditory and visual senses, making that retention rate jump to 68%. That should just give you more of an incentive to guarantee the videos you create are worth remembering.

It Makes You Stand Out

Every business entrepreneur and blogger know just how difficult it can be to differentiate themselves from all the rest. The truth of the matter is that not many companies have the creative streak to put a living, breathing representation of their company and product or service on their site. If you take the risk of being innovative and authentic with your target audience, and remember the importance of creating epic content, you’ll have a major advantage over the rest.

It’s Easy to Share

Video is increasingly easy to share, which guarantees that a memorable and creative video will reach more people than any textual content probably would. The time in which you decide to upload a video is crucial as well since many videos on YouTube are embedded, linked and shared on Tuesday between 11AM and 1PM. By creating an engaging, enjoyable video, you’re ensuring future traffic without having to do a lot of heavy lifting. With video, one click can easily turn into 100 clicks.

It’s Still Gaining Popularity

Videos may have been around for a while, but since they’re only becoming more interesting and eye catching, it’s clear they’re not going anywhere any time soon. It is actually predicted that by 2019, 80% of all Internet traffic will be streaming video content.   

The Punchline

How Videos Can Transform Your Content Marketing Strategy |

This year showed us that videos are becoming the go-to for marketing teams, bloggers, entrepreneurs, and pretty much anyone who wanted audiences to check out their sites. Thanks to platforms that are specifically dedicated to the task, now, more than ever, it’s easier to create professional videos without having to hire a team of experts.

Once you’ve created your video, you can rest assured knowing you’ll be instantly rewarded with an improvement in traffic rates, audience interest, and so much more. You’ve got so much to gain from adding videos to your content marketing strategy there really is no reason not try it out for yourself. Now’s the time to give it a go.

Since receiving her second degree in scriptwriting from TAU back in 2012, Nathalie Cohen-Sheffer has been busy writing full-time and as a freelancer in both English and Hebrew. When she’s not busy writing you can find her practicing her yoga positions, as well as singing professionally and dubbing. Feel free to get in touch to learn more on Twitter.

Image credits: Raw Pixel.

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Community Discussion: Making Money

ProBlogger Community Discussion: Making Money

One of the most popular topics on ProBlogger (if not the most searched-for item) is making money blogging, and how to go about it.

There are so many ways of earning a living online, and we have almost just as much advice on how best to keep the dollars rolling in. Darren covers it quite extensively on his podcast, and it’s a topic we dive down deep in during every ProBlogger conference or event. If you’ve got a question, we would undoubtedly have the answer!

But because it’s so different, there’s no one real formula to success (and if there is, I’d probably say it’s “diversify“). Thats why I’d love to chat with you about what has worked for you and what hasn’t? What are the pros and cons of each choice for you? What would you love to try? What do you wish would be successful, but just isn’t?

For example, affiliate sales for me used to be difficult as it wasn’t as prevalent in Australia. Most of my income comes from freelance blogging, writing, and editing, and while affiliate income has grown, it isn’t what it could be if my audience was US-based. I also quite regularly had sponsored content on the blog over the years, but sidebar advertising wasn’t terribly successful. My next move is products (if only I can make the time!).

Where do you stand on making money? How much would you like to make? What kinds of income streams are you using or will you be experimenting with this year? Let’s chat!

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Reading Roundup: What’s New in Blogging Lately?

ProBlogger reading roundup | Blogging News

This week is all about writing (and writing lots), getting your SEO right, and decluttering your online life. Enjoy!

5 Writing Techniques that Stir Your Audience to Action | Copyblogger

Emotion, Emotion, Emotion is the new Location, Location, Location. If we’re not getting our audience to feel, how are they going to be motivated to engage?

The Four Essential Qualities You Need for Freelance Writing Success (and How to Develop Them) | Aliventures

Whether you have a side hustle freelancing or it’s your main source of income, success often only comes after a lot of hard work. Ali gives us the lowdown on the absolute foundations of making it as a freelancer: and it all starts with self-confidence.

This SEO Checklist = 48.7% More Organic Traffic [Case Study] | Backlinko

Wouldn’t you like to increase your traffic by almost half? Well get ready to make tons of notes and a firm to-do list… I shudder to think how many of my images are missing alt text, but I’m chipping away at them over time. These are easy strategies that just take a bit of focus from you.

How to Be a Prolific Writer | Mark It Write

This content ain’t gonna write itself! This post has some excellent advice from one of my favourite authors and some handy tips to get your fingers working faster on the keyboard.

5 tips for writing a great blog post for your event | Eventbrite

Do you hold events? Do you write event wrap-ups? Perhaps you go to a blogger conference or meetup, or some kind of workshop or gathering? These tips will be helpful.

8 Awesome Ways to Declutter Your Digital Marketing Life | Search Engine Journal

Much is being made of spring cleaning in the Northern Hemisphere, and that goes for your online life too. What needs cleaning, updating, removing, or general tidying up?

5 Ways to Analyze Your Social Media Marketing Performance | Social Media Examiner

When it comes to social media success, it’s crucial to know what’s working and what’s not. Where do you start? Well, you can try this post!

Top WordPress Plugins Every Site Should Have | Yoast

Which ones are you missing?

3 Effective Ways to Reduce Social Media Overwhelm | Socially Sorted

Reduce the clutter, hone your focus – Donna leads the way!

How Snapchat Could Bring Back TV’s Golden Age | Fast Company

Channel surfing from your couch? Remember those days? Apparently Snapchat has brought them back, only updated for the digital needs of today.

What caught your eye this week?

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Turning The Challenges of Remote working Into Strengths

Turning The Challenges of Remote working Into Strengths

This is a guest contribution from Nick Chowdrey.

Remote working is an attractive prospect for many people in this digital age. But it’s not as simple as packing up your laptop and riding off into the sunset – it takes a lot more effort and skill than that.

After all, there are offices for a reason. For example, when working remotely, if something goes wrong it’s not as simple as swiveling your chair and having a chat – you may have to wait hours to resolve the issue because your contact is on the other side of the world and asleep.

But it is possible to work as efficiently as an ‘IRL’ worker when you’re remote. As a remote worker myself, whose team consists primarily of fellow remote workers, I’m well suited to answering these questions.

The Two Biggest Challenges

The two biggest challenges that come with working remotely are communication and organisation. It must be visible to everyone you’re working with that you’re up to date on tasks, when these tasks will be delivered, when you’re available to take on more tasks, and when your workload is at its limit.

Ensuring your contacts are aware of any issues, that they know when you are off on leave and when you’re available for meetings isn’t so simple when you’re working across seven different timezones.

Thankfully there are a range of tools at our disposal that can help greatly:

Teamwork Projects

Teamwork Projects allows clear allocation of tasks with team wide visibility. Need some help with something? Check who has the bandwidth to take on a task with Teamwork. It can be used to communicate on specific tasks, ensuring that objectives are clear and feedback is delivered.

There are a number of project management tools out there but Teamwork provides a suite of functions in an easy to use interface that puts it the top of the list for me. It’s best use is for keeping track of your team and projects and helping keep to time and budget constraints.

Teamwork also features an easy to use timekeeping function so you can be certain your team are performing well. It really is aptly named, it’s your one stop shop for all things “teamwork” related.


A useful communication tool used primarily for instant messaging. Best of all it’s free! Slack allows for the setup of a number of different “channels”, allowing users to chat with groups of people related to that channel. Channels can be separated per client or per project or to cater to specific roles in the team.

Depending on how fun your colleagues and clients are you may have a “random” channel for non-work related chats or a “music” channel to share playlists with other teammates. Maybe even a channel just for you and your work friends.

Slack also allows for calling, direct messaging and integrates with loads of other productivity apps such as Google Apps and Teamwork.

G Suite

Google Mail provides a useful emailing service for organising contacts, sending files etc. But it comes with so much more. Enter G Suite – a whole suite of other cloud based apps designed for productivity.

Hangouts allows for instant messaging and video/voice calls to colleagues all over the world. Similar in function to Skype you may also share your screen – useful if your team and clients also use Google products. Drive is free web space to store information in an organised manner which can be accessed by anyone in real time.

Docs ensures that the team can edit and update files on the fly. Providing a whole suite of document types similar to Microsoft Office, although slightly more limited. Still worth it considering these tools are absolutely free and can be improved with a number of add-ons.


A great tool for organising remote meetings. GoToMeeting records your video conferences in crisp HD. This function is incredibly useful for reviewing client presentations to pick up on stuff you’ve missed and to see where you can improve.

It also offers HD video calls, and screen sharing from any device type, so even if your client has a plane to catch they have no excuse not to jump on a call.

Custom URLs can be created for each meeting for clarity and security concerns are taken care of due to high levels of encryption.


This tool is different to the others listed so far. It is not a communication or organisation tool. However it is very useful especially for freelancers as it allows you to combine other methods of communication onto one platform.

So if you’re working for a range of companies who use all the above tools or other similar tools you can combine them together on Sameroom for ease of use. No matter what tools your clients or companies are using, you only have to look in one place to keep track of all your communication.

Ramble over

So to conclude, there are a number of tools specifically designed for meeting the challenges of remote working. I would recommend discussing with your company or clients which tools they are using, or which ones they’re interested in. This allows you to ensure you are using compatible software which makes communication and sharing information much simpler.

Nick Chowdrey works remotely from Brixton, London as Content & PR Manager for international travel marketing agency In Marketing We Trust.

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Setting Up Your Browser to Increase Your Productivity

Setting up your browser to boost your productivity | ProBlogger

As bloggers we spend most of our work time staring at our browser. How we have a browser set up can have a significant impact on our productivity in two ways:

  1. It can help us eliminate distractions.
  2. It can help up keep focused on our key activities.

Below I am sharing four ideas you can implement to your browser, which will boost your productivity. While the below apps and techniques I share below are for the Google Chrome Browser, if you search for the app or process and your browser name, you should hopefully find something comparable.

Setting up your browser to boost your productivity | ProBlogger

1. Set your browser start up page

How many tabs do you currently have open in your browser? Many of us have 10+ tabs open at a time and we simply close the browser when we shut the computer down, without closing off the tabs.

The default for many browsers is to open up the browser with all the tabs you had left open when it last closed. This set up is unproductive as it takes a longer for your browser to fire up and be ready for you to start your work. Also the tabs it opens may not relate to the task you need to work on that day and can distract you from undertaking focused work.

In the settings section for Chrome you have three options from for how you can set your startup page. I recommend choosing either option one or two of the three listed below:

  1. Have a new tab open – I prefer to start this way. It is a clean slate and works well with the second tip listed below.
  2. Open a specific set of pages – you can set what pages exactly you want to open. This can be useful as it can open your WordPress dashboard, a Google Doc etc for you that you work on every day.
  3. Continue where you left off – while you may think it saves you time to use this option because it opens up everything you had open last time, it can be a distracting option especially if you have left your Gmail or social media open in tabs.

2. Install the Momentum app

To be really productive you should always know what you are going to work on before you turn the computer on. Starting with the open space of the internet can at best see you working on less important tasks and at its worst it can be a dangerous time suck as you procrastinate about what to do while checking your Facebook feed.

I write down at the end of my workday a maximum of three tasks I will work on the following day. This ensures that I don’t waste time procrastinating and I am working on tasks that are going to help me achieve my blogging goal for the year.

The Momentum app is an extension you can add to your Chrome browser that supports you working towards your goal. I have Momentum set up, so like in my first recommendation, when my browser opens up it is only with one tab with the Momentum page active. You can adjust this in your settings:

Each day when I start up my browser I am greeted with the Momentum screen and only one tab. I add to the tab what my key focus is for the day and the other tasks that I had written down the night before.

Setting up your browser to boost your productivity | ProBlogger

For the rest of the day, each time I open a new tab in Chrome, I will see my goal for the day, my to do list and a pretty picture with a quote. (The picture and quote change every day.)

Being reminded of what I should be working on every time I open a new tab helps to keep me focused on the task at hand and think twice about opening any new pages that will not help me with the task

3. Be smart with your bookmarks bar

Your bookmarks bar on your browser is the space that comes directly under the search bar and it is completely customizable. Setting up this space to have the websites you access most frequently can save you plenty of time across a day.

The image above shows part of my bookmarks bar. If you haven’t played with the bookmarks bar before, you can find comprehensive instructions here.

To maximize the bookmarks bar, make sure you edit the name that is automatically given to the bookmark when you add it to the bar. You can shorten it so you can fit more bookmarks on your bar.

If you look at my example it includes these key items:

  • My Gmail
  • My Google Calendar
  • My Google Drive
  • My wordpress dashboards and homepage to my sites
  • My quick stats package
  • My content plan Google spreadsheet
  • My planning sheet for my online course
  • Facebook page and Facebook groups I manage

You may need different bookmarks than what I have set up, but make sure you set up your bookmarks bar so your key sites can be quickly and easily accessed.

4. Install the News Feed Eradicator for Facebook

This will be the hardest extension to install for most bloggers. The News Feed Eradicator for Facebook is a fantastic tool. As bloggers we need to be able to access our Facebook pages so we can respond, add content and monitor our Facebook pages or groups.

It is however, so easy to work on our page and then take a “quick check” of our news feed once we have done our work. 30 minutes later we come out of a scrolling daze and we wonder where we were up to with our work.

What News Feed Eradicator for Facebook does is allow you access to everything in Facebook but your feed. So you can work on your Facebook page or group, but the minute you try to look at your feed, you will see this:

Setting up your browser to boost your productivity | ProBlogger

A motivational quote where your news feed once was, giving you a gentle prod to get back to work!

Now if you really want to see what is happening with one of your friends or the Facebook page of another blogger, you can simply type the name in the search bar and the page will come up. The News Feed Eradicator simply prevents you from mindless scrolling. You have to specifically search for anything that falls outside your groups or pages.

What have you added to your browser to boost your productivity?

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All Editors are Not the Same, so Which do You Need?

Not all editors are the same, so which do you need? on ProBloggerA question that frequently comes up in writing and blogging groups I’m part of is: ‘anyone know a good editor?’

This is usually followed by comments of ‘I used this guy once but it was a frustrating process’, or ‘mine was ok, but I’m not sure I’d recommend them.’

I’ve come across so many people who were really disappointed with the editor they hired to help them with their books or blog posts and in almost every case, once I’ve done some digging, I’ve discovered it was because their expectations of their editor were completely unrealistic.

How so?

The most common reason is that many people think the job of an editor is to take their words and re-write them to sound heaps better. That’s not editing, however. That’s ghost writing. Something that usually attracts a far higher price tag than editing (and for good reason. A skilled ghost writer takes your concepts and ideas, turns them into something coherent, ensures the writing sounds like you … and allows you to put your name on it even though you didn’t actually write it).

So, if editing isn’t ghost writing, what is it then?

In the perfect world, editing is four-stage process*. While it may seem that these four stages apply only to the editing of long-form content (like e-books and print books), it does also apply to short-form content like blog posts and articles:

Stage 1: Developmental editing

When we’re talking books, developmental editing occurs at the very start, preferably before you’ve started putting pen to paper. It’s where the editor considers both your idea and the intended market and determines whether:

  • The idea is sound
  • The idea will resonate with the intended market

They will also look at the ‘hook’ of your book – the angle from which you intend to deliver your idea – and help decide whether that’s the best angle, or if there’s another that would work better.

Editors of magazines and online publications also do the above when someone sends them an article or a pitch. They ask themselves ‘is this idea one that will resonate with our readers?’. If it won’t, they’ll either reject the piece or ask you to re-write it from a slightly different angle.

Stage 2: Structural editing

It doesn’t matter if your writing is amazing, your ideas brilliant and your target market perfectly primed to receive your ideas. If your book or article jumps around all over the place and doesn’t take the reader on a logical journey, it’s going to struggle to resonate and get traction.

When it comes to books, a structural editor will check that the order of chapters, and the sections within chapters make sense when it comes to delivering on the promise you’re making (via your title and sub-title). They ensure the information contained in each chapter is actually relevant to that chapter. They ensure the flow within each section and between each section is smooth and logical. They cut out stuff that doesn’t support the ideas you’re trying to communicate. They’ll also point out where the holes are (i.e. which bits need to be expanded on).

For a blog post or article, structure is just as important as it is for a book. You need to start with a strong hook, (pull the reader in), then deliver the information you’re trying to impart in a logical fashion that flows nicely and delivers a nice payoff for the reader.

Stage 3: Line editing

Once the structural editor is done and you’ve made the changed they’ve recommended, that’s when it’s time to bring in a line editor (often called a copy editor). These guys literally go through and look at each line.

  • A 45-word sentence might be cut into two sentences.
  • Redundant words like ‘that’ will be removed.
  • Unnecessarily long and convoluted sentences will be shortened.

Line editors also check for grammar and consistency of formatting, (bullet points, headings, quotes etc), and ensure what you’ve written is clear as a bell and easy to read.

Stage 4: Proofreading

The human brain skips quite easily over typos because it tends to see what should be there, not what’s there. Taht’s wyh yuo cna qiute esaily raed tihs setnecne!

That means proof readers are worth their weight in gold. For every one of my books, literally hundreds of people read them prior to publication. And while those people did pick up errors and alert me to them, in every case, when my proof reader did her thing, she picked up heaps more tiny mistakes, errors and inconsistencies.

Shouldn’t the line editor have picked these things up? Not really. The line editor is busy ensuring every single line reads well. They can’t be expected to pick up every proofing error too (although they will pick up most).

I want my blog posts edited – do I need all of the above?

In short, yes. Which sounds crazy, but the reality is, the editor of any online publication or magazine is doing all of the above as a matter of course every time they assess an article for their site.

In my role as editor of Flying Solo, I work through every piece I accept for publication and ensure:

  1. The idea is one that is relevant to, and will resonate with, our readers.
  2. The article is structurally sound. (The first paragraphs contain a good hook and introduces the premise, the mid-section presents an argument to support that premise, and the conclusion wraps everything up nicely.)
  3. The grammar is good, each line is crystal clear and words, lines or paragraphs that aren’t necessary are removed.
  4. Formatting is consistent and there are no spelling errors.

What if you’re writing a book?

Then I’d highly recommend at least three, if not four separate people do each stage noted above.

While a good developmental editor is usually also a strong structural editor, the former approaches your book with from a marketing point of view. They will help make your book saleable by figuring out the best angle/premise for your idea to ensure it will resonate deeply with your intended market. The latter is all about setting up the bones of your book to best deliver that idea via strong narrative flow. These are related, but discrete skills.

Line editing is a different skill again. Where development and structural editing take a higher level view of your book, line editing goes deep into the weeds. As someone whose skills lie in the realm of structural editing, I’m well aware of my ability to be a ‘good enough’ line editor, but not a great one.

Finally, as already mentioned, asking someone to both line edit and proofread your book is setting both of you up for failure. Once your line editor has been through your book once, they would need to go through it again to proof read it. And once they’ve been through your book once, they lose the ability to proof read properly because proof reading should be done by a completely fresh pair of eyes.

If I can’t afford all these people, which should I choose?

I do understand that if we’re talking about a book, getting it edited by four different people is costly. So, if funds are limited, where should you spend them?

Line editing would be first. It doesn’t matter how good an editor you are of your own work, a good line editor will make everything so much clearer and make you sound so much better. They will also pick up most proofing errors.

Structural editing would be second. One, because a good structural editor will likely examine the book with a developmental mindset first. And two, if your book is not set up in a logical way, flow will be compromised and it will be hard to read.

Proofreading would be third. As I’ve already mentioned, you can send your book out to 10 people to read and they will get most of the proofing errors. A good proof reader simply takes the level of professionalism in your book up another notch.

Which leaves developmental editing to last. The one time you would bring developmental editing to the top of the list is when you’re self-publishing a book and it’s super-important to you that it goes well. In this situation, a developmental editor will be invaluable to you with regard to clarifying your idea, ensuring the angle you’re coming at that idea from will hook the intended reader strongly and also inspire them to share with their friends.

How to avoid being let down by an editor

The short answer is – make your expectations very clear.

For a book, ask the editor if they’re doing all four stages outlined in this blog post, or just one. It it’s all four they’re doing (and I really advise against one person doing this), the price difference will be much more than if they’re only doing the line edit.

If it’s a blog post you’ll want one of two things:

  1. A ‘full edit’
    • Determine whether the core idea of the post is relevant to the target readers
    • Determine whether the post is structured to deliver that idea in a logical and satisfying way
    • Check for grammar and ensure each line ‘sparkles’
    • Proof read
  2. A ‘line’ or ‘copy’ edit only. In which case you would expect they will:
    • Check for grammar and ensure each line ‘sparkles’
    • Proof read

Keep in mind that if it’s #1 you want, it will cost more than #2.

The final word

Editing is a process that’s poorly understood. Editors can help by establishing expectations before they quote. Writers/bloggers can help by making their expectations clear. My hope is that by reading the above, we all now know the right questions to ask at the start 🙂

* Many in the writing industry combine the first two stages above and preach a three-stage editing process. I strongly believe the first two stages are quite discrete skills and need to be discussed separately.

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