In yesterday's Nugget I explained the importance of carefully choosing which vendors and designers to carry in your store based on their willingness to help you with the marketing for their product line. The suggestion I presented yesterday was that the vendor should have a press kit with photos of their products, finished ads, write-ups in magazines, designer bios, stories about the making of the jewelry, and stories of the inspiration behind the jewelry. Each item in their press kit can help you with online content marketing.
Content marketing is an internet industry phrase to explain the process of creating or organizing various types of website information focused around a single topic. All this organized information then points back to your website. Content marketing is also known as inbound marketing.
There's a difference between the "creative" process and the "organizing" process of content marketing. I'm dedicating tomorrow's Nugget to the organization process, and today I'll concentrate on the creative process. The creative process of content marketing is when you focus on a single topic for writing blogs, recording videos, recording verbal conversations, and taking your own photography.
I've just mentioned 4 different types of media that you can join together online to create a unified marketing strategy on a single subject. Each component of a designer's press kit can be used as source to create these 4 types of media.
Start with the designer's bio. If the press kit doesn't have a bio you should ask if you can get one from them. Use this bio of the designer along with information about the vendor to create a 400 or more word write-up for your website. This could be posted as a blog or as a standalone page on your website. You also include photos of the designer, jewelry they designed, and the logo of the vendor.
Staying on the topic of the designer's bio, you should also ask the designer if they would agree to a telephone interview, or an online video interview. You would have to record the telephone interview somehow--I suggest using either a digital voice recorder with an earpiece attachment or you might have a voice recording feature built into your phone system if it's VoIP. You can post that audio recording to your website for people to listen to and you can publish it as a podcast.
For the video interview you could set up a private Google+ Hangout and record it. As long as you and the designer have webcams you can record a face-to-face conversation that will be saved to YouTube. You can embed this video right into your website, but it will also attract viewers right through YouTube. The Google+ Hangouts have the ability to invite people to watch live or participate live, but you probably shouldn't use this feature during the initial interview with each designer.
For a more remarkable video interview, I recommend a video presentation system that was created for the jewelry industry. It's called V-By and it can be used for simple video interviews, but it can also be used to create presentations. With the V-By system you can interview the designer but also show HD video of the designer's jewelry using a secondary video camera. While showing the jewelry the designer could tell the inspiration behind the design. This type of video could be used as a webinar or it can just be recorded for your website.
Getting back to the contents of the press kit, the next thing you need to look at are previous magazine write-ups. These could be articles from industry magazines, but articles from fashion magazines would be better. You need to read the original articles and write your own commentary about them. This commentary would be between 200 to 500 words and it should include a summary about the article but also include additional information that you feel was left out. Magazines are notorious for short articles and since you now carry this line of jewelry in the store you should have plenty more to say about it. Your commentary should be interesting enough to stand on its own but you still need to link to the original article that's on the magazine's website. Important Note: Don't re-publish the original article on your website without first getting permission from the magazine because that's copyright infringement.
Some press kits include actual press releases. These press releases are worthless for content marketing because they have probably been published through several online press release distribution houses. Instead of reprinting the press release directly you can use it the same way a real journalist would--as inspiration for your own article or blog. Read the release and once again write a commentary about it. Include the photography that was also supplied in the kit, or take your own.
As you can see, these press kits are a fount of valuable information that can be used to build a content marketing campaign for the designer or vendor. Rather than trying to come up with all this information on your own you should always select vendors that will provide this important seed information for you and your in-house online marketing team.
In tomorrow's Nugget I'll continue this discussion with an example of how to organize information online, also known as curation.