Content Marketing Tips: So your social plan is in place and you’ve maxed out your PPC efforts. You are hearing Native is the new buzzword… but how to make it work and your CPA worth the investment? Outbrain will show you how to take native beyond a simple call-to-action, demonstrating how to address the complete content-driven customer journey from the first touch through conversion and beyond. Miko Levy, Outbrain’s VP of Acquisition will share his insights and demonstrate how to architect a native experience that is measurable at every stage. A session packed with tangible tips on how to boost your online funnel, increase conversions and turn your prospects into loyal customers.

Speech by Miko Levy | VP of Customer Acquisition, Outbrain

Miko Levy Speech Transcript

Hi everyone! Super happy to be here.

So, Fernando gave the intro about myself. In the next 15 minutes or so, I would like to talk to you a little bit about native advertising and content marketing.

And, to basically help you to be in front of the curve that we are seeing right now.

Growth Of Native

So, content marketing growth, this is a recent RAB study of how much money is being spent on content versus other platforms or other channels.

Content is virtually one of the booming trends. And, I’m sure you guys are noticing that as well.

So, there’s no surprise that publishers are putting much more space. Let’s say, shelf space on their properties for native and all many sorts.

It kind of brings me to the question of why is this happening or why is it happening now?

In order to answer that, I would go back to the basics. And that’s the users. The people who we are trying to sell to. They spend a third of their day consuming content.

And that’s a little bit problematic to us. You know, sleeping and showering into the 24-hour mix.

We don’t want them to read, we actually want them to shop. And, we want them to download the app. We want them to leave their contact details, we want them to stop reading and doing what we want as marketers to do.

So, what do we do? How do we do that?

We interfere with their experience, right? We do pop-ups, we do banners. And, we do pre-rolls, mid-rolls.

And this is kind of not the way that users wanna see.

They Really Ignored Our Ads

So, at first, they ignored us. They ignored our ads, they kept doing it. Well, from time to time they clicked on it. But they really really ignored us.

Can some of you remember how beautiful it was back at ’96 with 7-8% CTRs?

It stops, by the way, to 2007 because ever since it has become literally scratching the zero, you all know this.

Now, They Actively Block Them

And now, the nerve, on their part, they are actively starting to block us. They are starting to block our ads, they are starting and continuing to block our efforts to interrupt their experience.

This is something that we need to face. And the result of that, the prices of advertising is going up.

This is a recent Nanigan report which, by the way, are doing great content marketing on Facebook advertising. 60% year over year increase in cost per click on e-commerce advertising on Facebook.

This is crazy.

There is no doubt why performance marketers are actually going into the content marketing space and are finding it as the most leading trend in helping them get sales across their overall channels.

Performance Marketers Seize The Content Opportunity

This is the main thing we’re trying to solve here at Outbrain.

We’re trying to help marketers like yourself to be able to match the content to hit your content KPIs, to hit your e-commerce experience. And making sure that at the end of the day you’ll meet your goals with content.

We do that by partnering up exclusively with tons of publishers around the world, with the leading publishers around the world.

Which enables us to reach about half a billion people a month.

And that not only allows us to actually be a very scalable solution for all of you guys to promote your content and reach those audiences.

But it also allows us to listen and see and analyse what people are actually doing and reading and how they consume the content. And by doing that, we’re able to actually help you succeed with your content marketing.

So, after seeing thousands and thousands of customers on our platform doing content marketing, some are doing it really, really well, some are not.

7 Tips To Make Content Marketing Work

I tried to gather at least 7 tips, highly level tips to help you with your content marketing efforts and to be on top of the curve.

#1 Don’t Be A DoucheBag

Tip number one. You’re laughing because you know this is true.

Because affiliates and not the people in the room, of course, we’re trying to push the limits. We’re trying to do as much as we can to interrupt the users with their experience.

And making sure that they’re actually downloading or do what we want them to do.

It doesn’t work like that in content. In content, you have to bring real value.

When someone reads your content, trust me they will know if this is a BS article to get them to leave their details. Or if this is something that generally gives them value.

If it will give them value, you’ll see the value at the end.

We’re seeing it day in and day out. So, this is the first tip.

#2 Define A Content Strategy

The second one and this is kind of, could be obvious, but define a strategy.

Don’t start doing content. And, don’t just put things out there.

Think about the personas, think about the people you’re actually wanna market to.

And think about what types of content would they want to read. Where do they read it? When? On what devices? Think about that.

Are they going to read it on their way to work on their phones? Or are they going to read it after dinner or after their kids are going to bed and consume it on their home computer?

All of that is super important to understand, the type of content that you would want to create and for them to consume.

#3 Build Audience Segments With The Right Content

So, building audience segments, this is something that I’m sure a lot of you are doing with so many tactics and efforts.

At the end of the day, think about a travel affiliate, for example. There are tons of personas that you wanna target.

There’s a different person who is like, if someone is coming or planning a trip to Berlin for a conference, it’s a very different persona than someone who is actually planning a trip with their families to Orlando, to Disneyland.

Or someone who is looking for a romantic get away with their partner.

All of this is very different types of content, a different state of mind of your users. And it’s quite easy to actually do this with content, right?

Because, imagine if I would have hit you with an article of “The Five Best Bars in Berlin” that nobody knows about before coming in, I would bet that a lot of you would actually read it and will go to those places.

So, think about that. Once you do that, you are able to segment the customers into the right buckets. And then think about how you actually retarget them later on.

#4 Re-engage Audience Segments With Content

And that’s the next tip. A lot of retargeting efforts. We’re seeing it day in and day out.

The user first priority data from advertisers and brands is something that is happening all day. Day in and day out.

Remarketing is not something that should be strange to anyone in this room. But, I would bet that a lot of you are not thinking about doing it with content, right?

Usually, the types of reengagement and remarketing that we are seeing is being done on a very call to action type of thing. But this is not the case with content.

This is a recent case study that we actually did with One Kings Lane.

Those of you who don’t know One Kings Lane, they are a leading retailer in the US. They are selling home goods and designer things for your home.

So, what they did is, they did an interesting strategy with content. Anyone who came to one of their products, they segmented them. And didn’t convert, obviously.

Then they remarketed them with content.

So, if someone came in and went to a sofa product. They saw the sofa product and then they went out, they didn’t purchase it.

Then, they would retarget them with the trending sofas in the summer, or something like that.

And then, got them engaged back with content. And literally, decrease their CPAs by 50%. This is a lot for, you know this, like for an e-commerce website that works on very slim margins.

#5 Sequence Your Content

Now, for those of you who are doing a lot of content marketing, you would wanna tell the story. You wanna tell the story in the right sequence.

So, if someone is, let’s look at the funnel of the customers, right?

If someone is at the top of the funnel, you wouldn’t wanna go and start pushing them with the call to action, buy, buy, buy now. You would wanna kind of lure them in, tell the story in the right way.

Trust me. I hope you agree with me at least, that there has to be a better way to tell that story than pushing banners or pre-rolls through that experience.

Think about your customers and where they are at the funnel. Are they at the awareness stage? At the consideration? Or at the conversion stage?

Think about where they are.

Different KPIs and different metrics that you would wanna measure based on their level of where the customer is on this funnel. But, each one of them has a different type.

Requires different types of attention, I would say.

So, let’s say you are Dell. And you are trying to promote your cloud storage service. You would go one thing, you would go a higher level content for the awareness stage, only to those who read it.

Then, you would go to a different article. And only those who actually engage with that, you would go to a call to action type of content. Or, an ad depending on the strategy.

You have to sequence those.

And you don’t want for people at the top of the funnel to get the action article before that. Because then you gonna mix.

#6 Learn How To Measure Content KPIs

This is to learn how to measure your content KPIs.

This is something that’s a lecture of its own. But I did wanna point out one thing that I’m seeing a lot of our customers are challenging these days.

This is like a real Google Analytics. I’m sure a lot of you are using Google Analytics but it’s true for any platform that you are using to measure your attribution.

Google Analytics is looking at, by default, the last non-direct click. Which by default means anything that you are doing, before the customer decided to convert, is dismissed.

Everything that you’ve done before that, before the last click, is literally irrelevant for you. And when you’re measuring it, it means that you’re kind of putting that away.

Trust me. I hope it was true but nobody goes to bed, never heard of your brand, dream about you, wakes up, go on to Google search, search for it, and buys your product.

It doesn’t work like that. But Google Analytics makes you think it is.

Once you go to, first interaction, for example. This is just one example.

You would see a lot of channels performing, converting differently than what Google Analytics shows you on the default.

I assure you that if you’re gonna look at this on your platforms, you’re gonna see content working much better than you think. Even today.

#7 There Is No Silver Bullet

So, the last tip here is that there is no silver bullet.

Content marketing, especially content marketing for performance, is something that’s literally being taught by you guys, by the field as we speak.

A lot of people are doing it. Not a lot of people are doing it right. And not a lot of people are succeeding dramatically with.

This is your chance to be ahead of the game.

If you’ll be able to get those tips and start doing your content marketing in a good way, then you’ll be ahead of the curve and get a totally different advantage on your competition.

So, to sum it up, don’t be a douche bag, please.

This is what causes the entire industry, the CTRs to go down.

Define a content strategy, build your audience and then reengage with them with content.

Sequence your content to make sure everyone hits the right thing.

Learn how to measure your content and remember there is no silver bullet. There’s a lot of learning here.

Thank you very much!