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Archive for Audience Development Strategy

Audience Development Strategy posts focus on how to build a bigger online community by utilizing a number of different strategies. In this section you will find posts that combine multiple audience building techniques, blogging for audience development, descriptions of great audience development personnel and much more.

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How to Use Paid Advertising as an Audience Development Channel

Audience development is one of those terms that many people instinctively understand, but usually underestimate

Although media professionals have worked in audience development for years, most have not bothered to define all the things that go on when executing an audience development strategy.

And at its most basic, that’s what it is, isn’t it? It’s about building an audience for   Continue

Using Retail as an Audience Development Channel

Retail can be used to boost your audience development efforts, because newsstands come with their own marketplaces
There are seven major Audience Development models we have identified: search, social, syndication, email, retail, paid advertising, and direct mail. Today, I’m focusing primarily on retail, and using Green Gardens Network as an example. If you’re new to Mequoda, please   Continue

Email: The Single Most Important Audience Development Tool

Every successful niche publisher we know uses email as the central resource of their audience development toolbox

As you know, our clients are some of the most incredible before/after examples of niche publishers who have turned their businesses around when they went multiplatform. And there’s not a single Mequoda client without email as the core of   Continue

Syndication: An Audience Development Strategy Used Carefully

When syndication is used for audience development, magazine publishers should be wary of duplicate content
Publishers have a long history of building audiences around specific topics, or niches. But the internet economy changed the audience development model significantly. Many of the traditional practices still work, but the digital economy requires a more expansive, and agile, approach   Continue

Social: An Easy-to-Follow Audience Development Program for Content Marketing

Every publisher should develop an audience development program specifically for social that stretches throughout the year
Previously, the only purpose of building an audience was to sell print subscriptions. Now, publishers are looking to sell digital subscriptions, develop leads for sponsors, increase memberships, and build communities. As the uses for your audience have expanded, so have   Continue

Search: An Audience Development Model Every Publisher Must Respect

If your audience development strategy doesn’t incorporate search, you’re not thinking of the long term
When you are a Mequoda publisher, the goal of audience development is to get people on your email list. You will use that list to eventually sell them a product or monetize them through a sponsored message. The strategies we use   Continue

Two Sales Letter Landing Page Copywriting Models

How to use anxiety in your sales letter landing page copywriting
Someone once reduced all human motivation to the simple pleasure/pain principle.
“You either want something you don’t have, or you have something you don’t want.”
It’s Psychology 101. We either seek pleasure or we avoid pain. Those are the two principal motivators.

Based on that simplistic summary of   Continue

7 Types of Freemiums Publishers Give Away to Build an Email List

Build an email list by creating free downloads that fit the content theme you are already selling
Freemiums have become the ultimate way to build an email list. The difference in email capture rate between a site that asks readers to sign up for their free newsletter, and one that asks them to sign up and   Continue

How Google Has Altered Your Keyword Universe

If you maintain a keyword universe like we do for our clients, you may want to follow our lead on this update
Mequoda is built on a structure of best practices. Best practices are standard conventions, methods, or processes that have proven to be successful through testing. We can’t stress enough the importance of paying attention to what   Continue

5 Reasons to Recycle Content on Twitter

Twitter isn’t just about the here and now. In social media, you could post the same article ten times a day, but your traffic would only be driving traffic to that one page. That’s why it’s always a smart idea to recycle your articles on Twitter using our 12x12x12 method, so that blog posts from a month ago, six months ago, and a year ago, get a new life.   Continue

How to Master the 5 Major Search & Social Algorithms

The social algorithm ecosystem is becoming just as important to watch and analyze as search algorithms

Have you ever had someone in your life who asks you to do something, but then always changes their mind about how they want it done? Or maybe they can never really decide the best way to do it, but   Continue

How Will Bots for Magazines Change Publishing?

Voice commands for search and bots for magazines – why niche publishers should prepare for the new wave of data consumption

Beyond the latest trend of kids walking into telephone poles while playing the new Pokemon Go game, you’ve probably noticed people everywhere spending more time looking down at their phones than their surroundings. But let’s   Continue

How to Write a Special Report Title, the Mequoda Way

Like the best email subject lines, report titles should be short and sweet
In today’s multiplatform publishing world, there’s no such thing as standing still. So when data starts whispering “change” in our ear, we listen.

That’s why, right now, we’re officially revising our longstanding Best Practice on how to write a special report title. Freemiums in   Continue

How to Write Compelling SEO Headlines That Don’t Put People to Sleep

Searchers will snooze right through your listing in Google if you don’t pep up boring old SEO headlines

SEO doesn’t need to be the killer of headlines, but those who adore punchy headlines might tell you so.

Do SEO headlines tend to be a little stinkier than the old journalism templates we know and love? Sometimes, but   Continue

Creative Video Ideas Publishers Are Using That You Can Too

We’re surrounded by a goldmine of creative video ideas in magazine publishing – which one will inspire you?
I sit here writing this as I just finished watching six videos in a row on Vogue’s site, all 73-questions long, about celebrities I don’t have an interest in, in a format that felt heavily scripted.

I don’t know   Continue

10 Ways You Can Be a Better Magazine Marketer in 10 Days

When your magazine marketing job gets boring, that means your customers are probably just as bored. Pep up your magazine marketer game in 10 days!

Being a magazine marketer is fun, because you have the epitome of fun topics to promote. Hopefully you’re working in a niche that you’re passionate about, which makes everything you promote   Continue

9 Ways the Best Email Marketing Campaigns Stop People From Unsubscribing

The best email marketing campaigns don’t hit the snooze button on engagement – they wake up early and go to work every single day

The worst thing you can do to stop people from unsubscribing from your emails is to hide the unsubscribe link. Hiding it only increases the likeliness of someone getting frustrated and clicking   Continue

Building a Google Visibility Report: A Step-by-Step Guide

Our clients publish in many different niches: food, investing, archaeology, environmental infrastructure, natural health and clinical pathology among many others. When they first come to us, they have nothing in common with one another, but after working with us for six months to a year, they all have one thing in common: a Google Visibility Report (GVR).   Continue

How to Pitch a Press Release and Stand Out From the PR Firehose

For a very long time PR was pretty straightforward, and for many publishers, highly automated. The guidelines for how to pitch a press release started with writing your press release, posting it to your site, posting it to your PR distribution channels of choice, and waiting to see what happened. For bigger publishers, there may have been a PR agency involved, who would put in the elbow grease to get your press release seen. The future of PR is that elbow grease.   Continue

3 Content Marketing Hacks You Can Benefit From Immediately

I don’t know about you, but the world’s a’changing when it comes to audience development. For a while, I felt like we were so ahead of the curve at Mequoda that we were pretty cool in our pants for a bit, but as we’ve been doing a lot of testing the past few months, it has become clear that user habits are picking up and moving with the wind.

Which is, of course, very exciting as a marketer, because tinkering is what we love to do best.   Continue

Good Keywords Aren’t Obvious: The One Thing You Should Do Before You Optimize

Google’s kind of the king of mixed messages. They tell publishers not to optimize, and to “just write great content” but their team says that yes, in fact, good keywords are great indicators that Google uses to rank you. It makes sense, Google isn’t yet smart enough to rank you intelligently for words you’re not using in your article.   Continue

How We’re Recycling Marketing Campaigns at Mequoda (And That One Time We Lost Revenue When We Stopped)

How we’re seeing a larger return on our marketing investment by recycling marketing campaigns across platforms
When I first started working at Mequoda almost 10 years ago, we wrote a lot of promotional copy. We sent several promotions per week, and each one was brand spanking new. For a company that was limited on resources at   Continue

Content Planning: Nailing Down Ideal Post Timing and Frequency

A couple weeks ago I attended an SEO conference called SearchLove hosted by Distilled. One of the speakers was Rand Fishkin, better known as the Wizard of Moz. At the very end of his presentation, completely off topic talked about the time he saw that Hubspot posted 49 articles in a week, and wondered if they’d ever determined that that was an optimal frequency for them.

01-content-planning-nailing-down-ideal-post-timing-and-frequencyLike most of us, especially in publishing, Hubspot was basically on the page that “more content = more traffic.” So Hubspot replied that they hadn’t measured it exactly, and asked if Moz wanted to do an experiment with them. At the time Moz was publishing 8 posts per week. Both cut their frequency in half and the results basically told Hubspot that they could afford to write less, but Moz should write a little more.   Continue

The Best SEO Keyword Strategy – Picking SEO Keyword Fights You Can Win

All SEO keywords are not equally important—volume and competition matter!

The most effective SEO keyword strategy is to compete vigorously for top placement for the most popular keyword suggestions returned by the Google Keyword Planner for a given root keyword phrase.   Continue

How to Optimize Images for the Web When You Recycle Magazine Archives

While bloggers are out there buying generic images for a dollar on stock photo sites, one nice benefit magazines typically have is an archive of photographs from past issues. One way that Mequoda suggests niche magazines improve their SEO is by digging into their old magazine archives, finding their most evergreen content, and recycling it on the web.

When that comes up, you might also be looking at uploading some old images. They may be named in a series of numbers or old categorization codes, and they probably have a dpi resolution way too high for the web. If your end goal is to create new, search-optimized content from your old archived content, images are part of the deal. It’s a pesky task, but you’re up to the challenge. Here’s how to go about it.   Continue

How Email Appending Can Make Your List Perform Better

Do you realize that a large percentage of your most loyal customers may only hear from you once a month, when you send them your magazine?

It seems like when you have customers who are paying to hear from you every month, they might be pretty easy to sell to again. If you just had a better way of reaching them … an email address perhaps.

What, you mean you have more than one product to sell?

01-how-email-appending-can-make-your-list-perform-better

Oh that’s right, you’re a publisher.   Continue

Why Planning Social Media for Magazines Always Leads Back to SEO

Social media for magazines should be equal parts branding and content marketing – with a new perspective on why magazines really market content on social

One of our clients recently conducted a 6-month test to increase their post reach, and one of the things we determined – after several months of testing every element available on Facebook   Continue

How to Sell Magazine Subscriptions Online Without Blow-in Cards

Have you ever received one of those birthday cards in the mail from one of your “funny” friends, where you open the envelope and glitter basically falls everywhere?

That’s close to how customers have always felt about magazine blow-in cards that try to sell magazine subscriptions. Maybe the cards don’t nestle themselves into the cracks of your hardwood floors to remind you forever of the hilarity, but they do fall over the floor whenever an innocent reader opens your magazine in the magazine aisle at Barnes & Noble or the end cap at the grocery store.   Continue

How Google Changed Magazine Marketing for the Better

Magazine marketing thrives in the new world of PPC and organic search
What’s the one thing that magazine publishers have in abundance, more than any other business on the planet?

Content.

And who’s the paramour of content? Google.

Think about it – all of the companies out there struggling with SEO and frantically hiring content farms overseas, and, bless   Continue

Increase Magazine Subscriptions With One Simple Trick

For the first many years as a publisher, you had one goal and only one goal: increase magazine subscriptions.   Continue

3 Email Subject Line Formulas Proven To Increase Open Rates

Getting your emails opened is the most crucial part of email copywriting

A couple of weeks ago, we recieved tons of great feedback, retweets and love for an article we wrote called 4 Email Subject Lines That Are Proven to Get Opened. In the article, I used MailChimp’s subject line suggester to test some of our favorite email subject line formulas against the tool.

We learned that “how to make” has the highest conversion rates of all the “how to” subject lines. We also learned that the word “why” has an incredibly great open rate in general, but using “5 reasons why” is practically guarantee to get you an open.

Today I decided I was going to try and test some of the subject lines that have come into my email inbox recently. By testing them with Mailchimp, we can see how the publisher would be able to increase their open rates.   Continue

Three Types of Content You Should Publish Daily

How creating, publishing, and promoting these three types of content daily will tackle all your social and SEO goals

Typically we find that content falls into three buckets: news, evergreen, and blockbuster. Most Mequoda publishers publish this type of content every single day because all three serve different purposes.

News content keeps your readers up to date   Continue

Republishing Content the Right Way

Recently, media site The Verge hired a position for someone who will basically take some of their content and republish it on other user-generated publishing platforms like Medium and LinkedIn Pulse.

If you’re a SEO-savvy publisher, you’re probably thinking, “what are they, crazy? Have they lost their darn marbles?”

Well, truthfully, Verge aren’t exactly getting eyeballs based on SEO anyway— they’re a news site (ie: they work harder for the same eyeballs as evergreen publishers……oh, burn.)
  Continue

How to Create Social Media Tracking Codes for Better Conversion Insights

Are your social posts converting fans and followers into buyers? You may never know until you start implementing social media tracking.

Whenever we publish a new article on Mequoda, we use our 12x12x12 social media method on Twitter. We write 12 unique Tweets, schedule them for 12 days, then once a month for 12 months.

This social   Continue

The Best SEO Software for Niche Publishers

Mequoda reveals the best SEO software publishers can use to extend the life of all their articles — more effortlessly.   Continue

The Benefits of Video Advertising: Buying and Selling Pre-Roll and/or Custom Content

The benefits of video advertising increase as trends are discovered, users are targeted, and call-to-action buttons are put into use.
Although consumers don’t generally love the 10-15 seconds of advertising they encounter when discovering new YouTube videos, or videos they find on publisher’s websites — they do, in fact, wait through them, at least to the   Continue

15 Proven Ways Your B2C Email Marketing Can Increase Clicks and Revenue

How to pump up the jam on your B2C email marketing efforts

Last week we dug into best practices in B2B email marketing. Business-to-business email marketing is particularly different because products are typically higher priced, copy is longer, and the best times to send email are typically during the 9-5ish hours.

B2c email marketing, or business-to-consumer email   Continue

12 Proven Ways Your B2B Email Marketing Can Increase Clicks and Revenue

Based on the results of a collection of A/B tests here’s a list of B2B email marketing best practices (and tests you can try yourself)

In their free time, some people like to ski or walk their dog, but I get kicks out of sitting back with a cup of tea and reading through results of   Continue

What is Relationship Marketing and How Can it Help You Increase Sales?

Take a look at these three case studies to better understand how you can combine content marketing strategy and relationship marketing strategy to sell while you sleep
  Continue

The Best Email Marketing Techniques Used by Publishers

The best email marketing practices encourage responsive design, endless testing, and customer retention strategies
If you didn’t already know, the Mequoda Method is a compilation of best practices derived from publishers who are making money online. They tell us what’s working for them, and when we see a trend that’s working for other publishers, it becomes   Continue

Become an SEO Copywriting Master: Practice these Copywriting Exercises

Working with the fantastic Mary Van Doren, our lead copywriter, has turned me into a marketing words geek. I cheerfully admit it. Words that can sell products are constantly in the background of my brain … bubbling around, vying for my attention, waiting to be assigned to just the right product. If a friend convinces me to check out the latest blockbuster movie, I find myself taking mental notes on how she persuaded me. I always appreciate a good political bumper sticker, even when it’s not supporting my favorite candidate.
  Continue

10 Steps to High Quality Content and Page 1, According to Google

Google reveals the guidelines it uses to teach Search Quality Evaluators the difference between high quality content and low-quality content
There’s no three-word phrase we hear more in content marketing than “high quality content,” and even though legacy publishers have always been proponents of high quality content, this specific term has taken on new meaning when search   Continue

The Best Paid and Free Press Release Sites

On content-driven, information-rich websites we use press releases for more than the basic announcement. We also use them to release free white papers because we know they offer more opportunities for inbound links and the SEO benefits required to get a landing page ranked well in Google.

Since Google now holds us responsible for the inbound links that come to our site, we decided to update our annual guide to the best paid and free press release sites by completely eliminating the sites with low SEO scores. What started out as a 50-something list is now down to just nine.   Continue

3 Audience Development Predictions for 2016

In the next year, publishers focused on audience development will double down on more dynamic content to engage readers on all platforms
When I first started working with Mequoda a decade ago, not only were brands clueless about content marketing, but the kings of content—publishers—still had a long way to go in terms of understanding how   Continue

Your Introduction Email Subject Line is Critical

“Hello, sailor. Can I buy you a drink?”

“Do you come here often?”

Of course these silly pick-up lines are good for a laugh, but do you know how to really introduce yourself to new prospects? When you’re about to launch a relationship with new customers, the subject line for introduction email is the first time you get to try to impress them.   Continue

10 Top Audience Development Posts of 2015

Our most-read audience development posts of 2015 reveal a desire for better understanding of email marketing, search optimization and social media best practices
This year we’ve tackled everything from email marketing to creating blockbuster posts and creating social media plans in our Audience Development articles. However, there are a few that have consistently been our highest   Continue

Publishers Nailing Social Media Optimization Through Custom Facebook Graphics

Publishers are paying more attention to social media optimization through their featured images and seeing higher reach

If you’re simply choosing stock photos from a library and using them as the featured graphics in your Facebook posts, you’re way behind the times, baby.

If there’s one thing social analytics are telling publishers, it’s that if content is   Continue

10 Steps on How to Write a White Paper

At Mequoda, one of our basic principles is to give things away. After all, how can people trust your content until they have a sample? And how will they ever find you again, unless you ask for their email address in exchange for the free product?   Continue

How Publishers Can Use Facebook Instant Articles

Facebook Instant Articles are creating a platform for publishers to host ads on social networks, rather than placing them
Ever thought magazines would be placing native ads on social networks? Me either, and that’s not exactly happening just yet, but it’s an interesting thought, right?

Back in May, Facebook launched Instant Articles , a content publishing platform within   Continue

New Facebook Flex Targeting Finally Gets Your Paid FB Ads in Front of a Relevant Audience

The Facebook flex and-or exclusion targeting can help you narrow down your target audience for Facebook ads like never before
Remember the days of putting your paid Facebook advertising budget money into a massive digital marketing black hole, because the ad targeting only allowed you broad audience options?

Well they’ll soon be faded from memory like a   Continue