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Our Top Content (And Advice) In 2015

At the end of each year, we present you with our most shared blog posts (here are the 2013 and 2014 top posts).

This year is no different, only we want to focus on the crux of the article — the advice — from these 10 articles, and expand on that.

So read on for our 10 pieces of top content and advice for 2015 … all in one place!

top-content-and-advice-2015

But first, some takeaways …

What Our Top Posts Of 2015 Tell Us About Top Content

  • How-to and infographic posts took our top three spots
  • Content Marketing and Social Media Marketing posts made up 60% of our top 10 posts
  • 60% of the top 10 posts had numbers in the title or were listicles

It’s also pretty important to note that each month in 2015 we saw a noticeable dip in both traffic and share numbers.

Content Shock is real, my friends, and to combat it you’ve got to do these three things:

  1. Consistently create your best, most relevant, most helpful content
  2. Create a content distribution plan to ensure your content MOVES (here are 28 ways to promote your content from yours truly!)
  3. Ensure that you’re looking at the metrics and data to see what’s working — like we did here — and create or recycle similar pieces

Now on to the show …

Our Top Content This Year (2015)

8-ways-to-use-pinterest

10) 8 Surprisingly Effective Ways To Use Pinterest

Shares: 215 | Comments: 2

Type of content: List/Numbered

The 8 pieces of advice Jenn shared:

  1. Ensure you have a Pin It button on your sites (here are the developer instructions … we also like to use the jQuery Pin It button here on the blog).
  2. Create and post original content (try Canva for creating your own pins!).
  3. Consider your target audience and pin with them in mind.
  4. Don’t just pin with business in mind — show your personality!
  5. Realize that nearly any brand can be visual. Yes, that means you.
  6. Try Group Boards.
  7. Don’t forget to share your pins on other social sites.
  8. Pin regularly and consistently.

Quotable quote:

Plenty of “boring” brands use Pinterest for mixing things up and having fun with their marketing efforts.Click To Tweet

four-ways-to-handle-growing-pains

9) Four Ways Entrepreneurs Can Handle Growing Pains

Shares: 215 | Comments: 10

Type of content: List/Numbered

The four ways you (or entrepreneurs) can handle growing pains:

  1. Focus on time management and productivity. I do this by looking at two places: 1) areas with disorganization or lack of strategy, and 2) areas that aren’t a priority; non-revenue generating tasks.
  2. EMBRACE saying NO.
  3. Your network is your net worth.
  4. Let. It. Go. (Because you can’t control everything. Trust me, I’ve tried).

I think the main lesson with growing pains is the hard truth that growing pains hurt whether you’re struggling to grow, or growing at a rapid pace like B Squared Media did in 2015.

Don’t let all of the “oh, we’re SO awesome” people make you think it’s an easy road — even when growing!

Quotable quote:

The hard truth is, you have to say no more than you say yes to grow your business!Click To Tweet

your-storytelling-sucks

8) Your Storytelling Sucks!

Shares: 222 | Comments: 4

Type of content: #RealTalk (telling it how it is!)/Infographic

Why your storytelling (may) suck:

  • Take a look at the real world and not-so-great examples I give in the post of how NOT to tell your story (aka: don’t be an A-Hole)
  • Make sure you’re focusing your content and storytelling on your tourists (visitors), but don’t forget about your residents, too
  • Lose the #HubleBrag — it’s icky and no one cares about how awesome you are, they want to know how you/your products/your services can make them awesome
  • Use our Count Van Count storytelling by the numbers guide:

Storytelling Checklist

Quotable quote:

Effective storytelling means including a narrative with the solution(s) you're offering.Click To Tweet

community-building-tips

7) 20 Community-Building Tips That Will Get You Noticed

Shares: 228 | Comments: 5

Type of content: List/Numbered

Our 20 community-building tips:

  1. Say thank you.
  2. Don’t be cryptic.
  3. Think conversation.
  4. Learn to take constructive criticism.
  5. Social and sensitive don’t mix.
  6. Know your tone and voice.
  7. What’s your posting sweet spot?
  8. Comment … and sincerely!
  9. Use names.
  10. Vaule > promotion
  11. Don’t be a meme queen.
  12. Watch your grammar and spelling.
  13. Admit mistakes.
  14. VALUE. VALUE. VALUE.
  15. Align business with social.
  16. Don’t plagiarize.
  17. Know each platform.
  18. Have fun!
  19. Understand web etiquette.
  20. Humility + being humble = AWESOME

Quotable quote:

Though your company shouldn’t be solely focused on the numbers, growing your audience online does matter.Click To Tweet

lessons-content-strategists-learned

6) 7 Lessons Content Strategists Learned The Hard Way

Shares: 244 | Comments: 2

Type of content: List/Numbered

Sometimes we best learn from our mistakes … just don’t make these of you’re a content creator:

  1. Not citing your sources or giving credit where credit is due
  2. It’s okay to slow down or stop when things are going well
  3. Only use free tools
  4. Don’t measure everything
  5. The data doesn’t matter
  6. Create broad goals for success
  7. Not everything needs branding

Quotable quote:

Sometimes mistakes can be the best teachers … especially for content strategists. Click To Tweet

freelancer-or-a-consultant

5) Are You A Freelancer Or A Consultant

Shares: 270 | Comments: 4

Type of content: Answering a trending or common question

This is part of our new Business 101 series, which we created after realizing that many members of our list are other social media or small business owners.

Make sure you’re creating content for your alpha audience!

What’s the difference between a freelancer and a consultant? We break it down:

  • A freelancer usually is hired for specific taks and specific deliverables
  • A consultant is usually hired for more intangible items, like a strategy, workflows, processes, research or forecasting

And maybe, you’re not either one of those. Maybe you’re an entrepreneur! That’s what I label myself as.

Quotable quote:

A freelancer can be an hourly employee, while a consultant/entrepreneur usually works for oneself.Click To Tweet

behind-the-scenes-content

4) How To Master Behind-The-Scenes Content

Shares: 366 | Comments: 12

Type of content: How To

Our five ideas for behind-the-scenes content:

  1. Put your people in focus
  2. Innovate with tradition
  3. Showcase products and services (and more)
  4. Test out a sneak peek
  5. Leverage social media to share behind-the-scenes content

Quotable quote:

Stock photos are stale. Use real photos for better behind-the-scenes content.Click To Tweet

seo-tools-and-tips-for-your-blog

3) Revamp Your Blog With These 6 SEO Tools & Tips

Shares: 405

Type of content: Tools/Tips

Test out these six tips on your blog:

  1. Use your competitor’s top content to learn how to dominate your space
  2. Utilize SEO tools for trending topics
  3. Harness the predictive power of forums
  4. Earned media = industry expert
  5. Be social with social media
  6. Don’t forget about the visuals

Quotable quote:

Just because competitors have written about a topic doesn’t mean they've written about it well.Click To Tweet

The Content Code Infographic

2) [Infographic] The Content Code: 11 Ways To Ignite Content

Shares: 451 | Comments: 6

Type of content: Infographic

I’ll let the infographic do the talking …

11 Ways To Ignite Content from the Content Code_Infographic

Quotable quote:

Infographics are one of the easiest ways to ignite information you’re producing!Click To Tweet

time-you-have-wasted-on-social-media

1) Here’s How Much Time You’ve Wasted On Social Media

Shares: 463 | Comments: 10

Type of content: #RealTalk (telling it how it is!)

Ways we see companies/brands/marketers waste time on social media:

  1. The “be everywhere” approach
  2. Vanity metrics; not measuring conversions
  3. Thinking campaign first (instead of conversation first)
  4. Using the “post and pray” method
  5. Not using SAAS tools to measure, manage and view metrics
  6. Using EVERY tool to measure, manage, and view metrics
  7. Using or not using automation (everything in moderation!)

Quotable quote:

Social networking is where a lot of people are spending (and wasting) their time these days. Click To Tweet

What’s In Store For 2016?

We’ve seen from our top content in 2015 that tried-and-true methods like numbered lists, infographics, visuals, and how-tos drove most of our shares.

We’ve also been hit hard with the sheer amount of content out there.

Will it stop us from writing? HECK NO.

But we will be paying close attention to how to keep those shares coming — most likely through developing an in-depth content audit and distribution plan.

What will you be doing to ramp up content efforts in 2016? Help us be in the know and leave us a comment below. 🙂

 


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Brooke B. Sellas is the in-the-trenches Founder & CEO of @HelloBSquared, an award-winning social media, advertising, and customer care agency. She's also the Co-host of The Marketing Companion podcast with Mark Schaefer, where they discuss jaw-dropping marketing trends. Brooke's marketing mantra is “Think Conversation, Not Campaign” so be sure to give her a shout!
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Category: Best of B Squared, Content
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