Content Catchup: Our Secret ROI Formula, Social’s Surprising New Weapon, and More Must-Reads

Here’s what you missed while wondering whether your cost-of-living raise will take into account your growing fondness for happy hour gin and tonics…

How We Calculate the ROI of Our Content Marketing—in One Duck-Themed Tale

For many content marketers, the only thing more terrifying than ROI is the lingering image of that time Steve from accounts had seven too many drinks and decided to show you his very—um, personal—tattoo. But fear not. Contently VP of Content Sam Slaughter is here to let you in on the secret of how we tie each piece of our content to hard revenue figures. Read it.

The Hot New Weapon in the Social Platform Wars: Content

All your favorite platforms are gearing up for their next big battle for your attention, with content as the weapon that’s changing the game:

There’s a fundamental shift underway. Social media used to be about technology platforms that connected you with friends and got out of the way. But now, the world’s biggest platforms are increasingly trying to keep your attention with extra content. After all, that content might be better than what your friends are offering. It’s not that your friend’s seventh blurry Snapchat message from the bar isn’t interesting, it’s just that National Geographic snapped you and—my god—that bear is amazing. Read it.

Story Hackers: How the Hottest Startups in Silicon Valley Are Using Content to Fuel Their Growth

HBO’s Silicon Valley gets a lot right about the startup world out west—the social awkwardness, the brogrammers, the insane VC rat race—but the one thing it’s missing? A whole bunch of content marketers. That’s because, as Tessa Wegert reports, the hottest companies in the cradle of innovation are getting a leg up on the competition in old-school fashion—through print mags and other content. Read it.

The Ultimate Content Marketer’s Guide to Syndication and Licensed Content

In his latest epic post, Shane Snow takes us through the history of syndication and what it means for content marketers today.

My personal interest in syndication stems in part from my own company, where we help brands become publishers of education and entertainment in order to build loyal audiences. (We provide software tools and freelance talent to create original content, engage readers and viewers on the web, and optimize the process over time.) As our business has grown from three guys in coffee shops to 80 employees and the world’s largest network of freelance journalists, we’ve debated: Should we get into syndicated content, helping brands like Coca-Cola to license articles from traditional publishers like CNN? Or should we stick to helping brands just do original content? Read it.

Contently Comic: The First Marketers

Have a stupendous, beer garden-filled weekend. We’ll see you Monday.

Image by Goh Chin Heng
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