Writing an insightful, engaging article on a topic that you’re unsure of is always a challenge, but getting readers to respect your opinions and ideas is even tougher.
If you don’t have evidence to show that you’re offering an informed opinion, then readers will check out, and your content won’t resonate in the way you expect.
An ideal way to enhance your content and back up any ideas you may have is to include expert advice and quotes.
So, if you’re writing about a topic on which you are not well-informed, or you just want to back up your theories, then asking professionals and experts for quotes and insight could be the ideal solution.
The majority of the article will be your own work, but adding short quotes from experts can give your writing gravitas.
Working with respected experts in their field can add prestige to your work, and if they agree to promote your work if they are included, then they will give you additional reach.
To find out more about how to source the best experts, and get quotes that benefit your content, carry on reading.
Send Out A Media Request
One of the easiest ways to get experts to send you quotes and collaborate on your writing project is to send out a media request.
Effectively, you’ll be getting them to come to you, saving yourself time and effort seeking them out.
Media request services such as ResponseSource, ExpertSources or Gorkana can give you access to a wide range of experts and PR representatives.
Some sites don’t need you to make an account, but if you’re regularly sending out media requests, then it might be an idea to make one so that you can keep an eye on your requests.
If you write on the same topic regularly, you can even repeat your requests to get a steady stream of responses.
For each request, you need to select relevant categories; try not to choose too many, so that you don’t end up with everyone responding to you.
At the same time, if you go too niche then you might find yourself with too few replies, so try to strike the right balance. It might take trial and error, but eventually, you’ll get there.
When describing your article, share very few details so that no one else can steal your idea, and you can vet experts before you ask them for a quote. You can inform experts once they respond and offer you a quote.
Tell them what you’re going to offer and then ask them to reach out to you if they’re interested in contributing, then send your request and work with the service provider to get it approved and up on their site.
Personally Reach Out To High-Ranking Experts
If you have specific experts that you’re interested in featuring in your article, or you just want to boost your chances of getting relevant quotes quickly, then you can do a little manual outreach alongside your media requests.
First of all, you need to find relevant sources. If you already know who they are, then you’re good to go, so skip ahead a few sentences.
If you still need to find them, then try putting keywords related to your chosen topic into Google to find organisations or businesses in your niche. You can then get in touch with them to see if a spokesperson would be happy to collaborate with you on your article.
Another great way to find relevant sources who will be willing to share information with you is to find experts who’ve already done it. Read articles on your chosen topic and identify any experts who regularly contribute, then seek out their personal websites to find contact details.
Once you have a list of individuals and companies to contact, reach out to them or their media spokesperson. Much like your media request, your email should be brief- once you have confirmation that they are willing to provide a quote, you can give them a definite topic to write about or a question to answer.
Offer A Link Back In Return
As you are asking for their time and expertise, most experts will want something in return, but it is uncommon to pay for this opportunity, and if your sources do get paid then you might need to disclose this to readers.
Usually, most expert sources will be happy to provide you with a quote, particularly if it’s only a short one, in return for a backlink to their website or professional profile.
Backlinks are crucial for any website’s SEO, but it can be time-consuming and expensive to build them yourself.
Offer all of the experts that choose to provide a quote, and whose information you use, full credit and a backlink. They can suggest the anchor text, and as long as it isn’t spammy you can use this.
You can also suggest that if they share the article on social media and tag your pages, then you will reshare their post. This approach incentivises them to share the content with their followers, giving you additional promotion for very little effort.
Check The Credibility Of Your Sources
When you receive responses from media requests, you need to verify that they are legitimate experts in your niche.
If they haven’t already provided one, then ask for a link to their website and review it to see how legitimate they are. Put their name into Google and look out for any reference to them, so that you can verify that they are, in fact, an expert in their field.
If possible, try to find some examples of work that they have contributed to, so that you can see what kind of quotes they provide and whether or not they will be a good fit for your article.
Be prepared to share examples of your own writing with experts; this verification process works both ways, and they will want to make sure that they are providing their expertise to a respected website and a writer who will create a high-quality article.
Get Approval For Any Edits You Make
When you’ve received a positive response, you can ask a question or request a quote on a particular topic which will fit into your article.
Every expert quote is different; some might be complete, proofread and ready to go, while others will be rough bullet points or long, run-on streams of thought.
As such, you might need to write up the quote. You can also remove any irrelevant information that’s been provided, and turn it into a professional quote that shows the expert, and you, in the best possible light.
It’s crucial that you send this amended quote back to the expert, and get written approval before you publish your article.
If you’ve just reworded their information and not changed what they say, just how they say it, then you should be fine.
Once it’s all approved, you’ve got at least one quote to add gravitas to your work.
Send A Link To Your Content To Contributors
As soon as the article is published, part of your promotional activity needs to be to tell all of the contributors and ask them to share the link.
As mentioned earlier, you can offer to reshare their posts if they tag you on social media. You could also ask for a link to their piece on their site if they are willing.
Remember to stay cordial and maintain the relationship; you never know when and where you might encounter them again. Even experts that you don’t put in your article should be treated with respect and manners.
Overall, any content creator or SEO that wants to write engaging, insightful articles that readers and algorithms love needs to be finding experts to back up their claims.
As this article proves, it’s easier than it looks to find these experts and many of them are more than happy to help. By providing a quid pro quo, you will both benefit from your association.
Hannah Stevenson is the Content Marketing Manager at UK Linkology, the UK’s highest-ranking link building agency. A former journalist and experienced blogger, she has written a wide range of articles and included experts from across the corporate and public sector landscapes in her writing.
How to Better Communicate With Your Audience Through Email Marketing
You’ve probably heard several people say that email marketing is dead. Since instant messaging apps and social media platforms have entered the picture, people may easily believe this false claim. But, if you’re a business owner who’s on a never-ending quest to improve customer engagement, you should know that email marketing remains an incredibly effective practice.
With over 3.9 billion email users worldwide, it’s not an exaggeration to say that over half of the world’s population can be reached through this channel. As an all-in-one tool, email marketing can perform various functions, such as influencing purchasing decisions, widening brand awareness, and improving one’s sales.
To show you how vital it is, HubSpot has found that over 80% of businesses heavily rely on the channel for their customer acquisition and retention. If you haven’t hopped into the email bandwagon, you should get on board as soon as possible. Statistics show that for every dollar you spend on a campaign, you can potentially acquire $38 in return.
If you’ve already implemented an email strategy but did not get the results you want, you might be wondering how you can improve the performance of your email marketing campaigns. To steer your business in the right direction, the guide below will teach you how in four simple steps.
1. Segment Your Audience
Writing a marketing email is no different than writing a letter to a friend. With this analogy in mind, the first thing you should do is determine whom you’re talking to and why.
Nowadays, there’s no such thing as the average consumer. Given that the market has become more competitive, customer demands have evolved and are now more specific than ever. If you simply send out generic emails that don’t provide any form of value, chances are you won’t capture the interest of your leads.
Before you start sending out promotions, you need to characterize and segment your audience. Even though each customer has his/her own unique characteristics, you can group them all into a specific mailing list. Here are some factors that help marketers establish buyer personas:
- Job Title
- Demographics: Age, Gender, and Location
- Purchasing Capabilities
- Online Behavioral Patterns
- Email Clickthrough Rates
By figuring out the different kinds of people who buy your products, it’ll be a lot easier for you to deliver the right messages to the right set of eyes.
2. Personalize Your Messages
Did you know that including the recipient’s name in an email’s subject line can increase its open rate by 16%? Personalization is a vital component in creating the ideal customer experience, yet many companies fail to do it properly.
When it comes to email marketing, personalization can be done in several ways. Other than including the customer’s name in your email, you can deliver and customize messages based on a subscriber’s characteristics. If a specific customer is in the consideration stage of the buyer’s journey, sending out an email that can help them decide on a solution will increase the likelihood of a transaction.
It’s no secret that customers greatly value the experience they get from a brand. If you were able to segment your audience accordingly, sending out timely and relevant messages should be a breeze. Apart from sending out specialized promos and discounts, your customers will greatly appreciate it if you regularly send important updates or let them know that your business provides email support.
3. Share Your Story
Your customers don’t just want to transact with your brand; they want to build a relationship, as well. Enticing your leads to convert should always be your goal, but this doesn’t mean that you should only bombard your subscribers with promotions. Aside from advertising your products and services, you should also use email marketing to pave the way for valuable engagements.
Email is a direct and intimate channel that allows your audience to learn more about your business. Now that consumers are more socially conscious, they take a company’s values and beliefs into account before closing in on a business deal.
Sharing stories on how your business began or letting them know your stance on particular issues lets your audience see the human side of your brand and eventually strengthens your online reputation in the long run.
4. Let Data Serve As Your Map
Just like any other discipline under the digital marketing umbrella, your email strategy should be fueled by data. Taking note of important metrics such as your clickthrough rate and overall return on investment primarily lets you see how successful your campaign is. At the same time, harnessing these statistics also lets you identify bottlenecks and enables you to make the right adjustments.
Similar to optimizing your landing pages, email marketing is not a one-and-done task. Complacency is the number one enemy of any brand, and this is why marketers should make it a point to test their email templates periodically. But now, you may be wondering, “Which components of my email campaign should I test exactly?”
Aside from your subject lines, your email’s design, length, and button placement can greatly influence the success of your campaign. People react differently to certain templates, and A/B Testing allows you to see which variation delivers the best results.
Harness the Power of Email
No matter what industry you may be operating in, there’s no denying that nothing grows your business more than customer loyalty. Luckily, advancements in technology have given brands many opportunities for valuable engagements. But, in this fast-paced digital world, it’s easy for business owners to prefer popular channels such as social media and disregard email-marketing entirely.
While it may seem like an old-fashioned way of communicating with your audience, at the end of the day, email marketing still gets the job done. As an all-in-one tool, investing in an email marketing campaign will do more than just optimize your conversion rate.
Just like any other marketing practice, there’s a right way to do things. With the tips above in mind, you’ll be able to take your campaign to the next level and drive your business forward.
About the author
Eliza Espino is an Online PR Specialist for Spiralytics. She recently began her professional career in digital marketing and is continuously learning about the field. One of her goals is to help grow businesses from different industries. Eliza spends her free time exploring films and series that can make her smile, think, laugh, or cry.
How to Increase Your Email Open Rates in 2020
To grow your brand online, you need to market it effectively. This requires you to leverage various forms of marketing.
One of the most reliable forms of marketing is email marketing. There are over 4 billion email users around the world and that makes it a great medium to reach out to a massive audience.
However, for your email marketing campaigns to be effective, you need to ensure that your audience not only receives your emails but also opens them. It’s only then that you can get them to take your desired actions and convert.
Thus, your email open rate is critical for conversion rate optimization. If you can’t achieve a high open-rate, the chances are that your email marketing campaign will not be successful.
So, how can you increase your email open rate?
Let’s find out.
How to Boost Your Email Open Rates
Here’s how you can increase your email open rates.
1. Short Subject Lines
Email subject lines are perhaps the most important part of any email marketing campaign. If you don’t get them right, the chances are that your receivers may never open your email. This would mean that all of the other content of your email will be wasted.
The subject lines need to catch the attention of your receivers and should prompt them to click on your email to open it.
So, here’s a trick – the email subject line also needs to be short.
Because many of your receivers may check their emails on their smartphones. In fact, about 42% of all email opens are on mobiles.
Image via Litmus
Owing to their smaller screen size, smartphones tend to display shorter subject lines. So, if you write a long subject line, the chances are that the receivers may not be able to read it completely. This may reduce the possibility of them opening your email.
That’s why about 82% of experts prefer to use short email subject lines that are less than 60 characters long.
The above-mentioned study also found that the average length of email subject lines is just 43.85 characters.
Yet another reason for keeping your subject lines short is that email apps stop displaying lines longer than 30-40 characters.
2. Subject Line Content
Length isn’t everything, however. The content of your subject line is also important.
While the copywriting has to be on point, you can improve the chances of your receivers spotting your subject lines by adding emojis to them. They can make your subject lines appear unique as only about 6.9% of email subject lines have emojis in them.
To test the efficiency of the subject lines, you can use tracking tools and figure out the impact of the emojis on your subject lines.
Image via AWeber
You could also try to vary the capitalization of your email subject lines to make it appear more unique.
The most common case used is sentence-case with about 60% of subject lines using it. However, only 6% of them are written in lowercase completely. This strategy might come in handy and could help you boost your open rates.
These strategies, of course, don’t apply to transactional emails which may be opened by your customers regardless of the subject line.
3. Segment Your List
One of the most important things you can do to improve your open rate is keeping your email list fresh and segmenting it well. A fresh and well-segmented email list means that only those who’re interested in receiving your emails will get them.
Segmentation means that you can personalize your subject lines and emails for each segment separately. As a result, the emails will seem more relevant to them. Due to this, they’ll be more likely to open your emails to check them out, hence improving your open rates.
Segmentation can be done based on their purchase behavior, demographics, locations, and interests. For instance, you can send emails depending upon the types of products that they’ve purchased from you and suggest similar products to them.
Improving your open rate is crucial for the success of your email marketing campaigns. To get your subscribers to take action, you need to get them to open your emails. For this, you can come up with crisp and attractive subject lines.
You can also add emojis to your subject lines and change their case to make them more unique. Lastly, you should keep your email list fresh by removing inactive accounts and segment it so that you can send out more personalized emails to your subscribers. You can also increase your email subscribers by combining your email marketing with social media marketing strategies using social media marketing tools.
Do you have any questions about the tips above or need help boosting your email open rate? Let me know in the comments.
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