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Earning Attention: Cold Calls, Content and Ads; Unscripted Marketing

Earning Attention Cold Calls Content and Ads; Unscripted Marketing

There’s an old maxim about that says, “Never chase love, affection or attention.  If it isn’t given freely by another person, it isn’t worth having.”

It seems true for personal relationships, but it may be at odds with some aspects of business. The business lexicon is filled with words related to chasing: A pursuit.  A prospect. A lead.

Seeking attention in love may be ill-advised, but as adults, many of us earn our living by helping businesses chase attention.  And the chase is not easy work given the target market’s distraction and fickle.  Whether in sales or marketing the moments we have to capture and hold the attention of a customer are short at best.

It is just seven seconds on a cold call for sales or perhaps a phone pitch for PR.  SEOs have just 60 characters for a headline – and it’s about the same for email marketers and their subject lines.  There are usually exceptions, and testing and iterative improvements are strongly recommended.

And this is why earning attention is the theme of this week’s Unscripted Marketing links. Below are three thought-provoking articles on earning attention.

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1. What I Learned Making 300 Cold Calls

Does cold calling work?  Justin Bailie designed and experiment to find out why.  He made 300 phone calls to a list of contacts he cultivated on LinkedIn.  All in he says he invested about 35 hours of work and made the calls for a couple of hours every Thursday over the course of 11 weeks.

How many leads did cold calling produce?  None.  But he says he earned more inbound leads than ever from other channels during that period.

“What I think is that when I got into a “do whatever it takes” state of mind the universe conformed and delivered. I was stating that “I was open for business” and that message was released to the universe, creating more confidence and more positive energy. This may sound a little far out to you but it’s the best explanation I got and the more I consider it and talk about it the more it makes sense.”

Also see: In Content Marketing, Marketers Might be Losing Their Way

2. What Your Customers Think About Content Marketing

Ad blocking is a contributing factor to the rise of content marketing, according to Ural Cebeci.  However, he points out that the time people spend with digital media remains flat, even as the volume of content produced grows.  The answer he says rests on quality:

“As content marketing eclipses online ads, marketers might be tempted to pursue a volume approach. But is quantity of content really the answer?

The data suggests it is not. Recent research from TrackMaven shows that increased social media posting is inversely proportionate to engagement rates.

Measuring content output is easy. But measuring quality is not. Brands serious about their content strategies must put KPIs in place─ones related to metrics like engagement and lead generation─and track their efforts carefully against them.”

Also see: Quality Content: Devices, Sales and Crisis

3. Strong Headline + Stellar Content + Paid Media = Audience Attention

Some marketers have gotten good at writing headlines, but the content doesn’t deliver. It’s a bit like crying wolf.  Perhaps that’s why Michael Brito thinks amazing headlines alone are not enough to earn audience attention:

“This brings me to my next point. Paid media. What I find most challenging is convincing people that paid media is no longer an option. Several of my previous clients come from very traditional PR backgrounds and they struggle with this. It doesn’t matter if you managed to write a good piece of content with a killer headline and then share it on your company channels.

That’s not enough. Long term, it’ll certainly help once the content gets indexed in Google and begins to appear in organic search but there is no short term impact. Immediacy and relevance are critical to reach your audience.”

Also see: Balancing PR with Content Marketing

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Have a good study or thoughtful piece you’d like to see covered in a future roundup?  Send us a link!

Did you know?  Most PR firms are good at either media relations or content marketing, but rarely both. Sword and the Script Media, LLC delivers seven services including PR and content marketing that deliver results. Contact us today to set up a time to discuss your marketing needs and goals.

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Balancing PR with Content Marketing

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