I’ve been using Eugene Ware’s Market Samurai for years, and today he is going to share some powerful content marketing tips to ensure you generate massive leverage (aka traffic and sales) from every piece of content you create. We talk about the importance of distribution, the secret behind maximum traffic with minimal effort, and how to get from a single article to heaps of content in an hour or less.
Transcript: Content Marketing Tips For Maximum Content Leverage With Eugene Ware
Welcome to the Project Ignite podcast. This is your host, Derek Gehl. Today’s guest, I’ve heard him referred to as the smartest Internet marketer you’ve never heard of. After getting to know him for the past few years, I would tend to agree with that.
He’s one of the founders and genius minds behind Noble Samurai, a company that’s been developing marketing software for online businesses for close to a decade. I use one of the main products on a weekly basis and have trained thousands of people on how to use it–that is Market Samurai, one of the most powerful keyword research tools available today.
But, today we’re not talking about keyword research.
Instead, we’re diving into powerful content marketing tips with a guest that has immense knowledge in this area.
Without further ado, I would like to welcome Eugene Ware to the show.
Thanks for having me, Derek.
So before we get started, what’s your back story? How did you end up where you are today?
It’s a long story. But the short version is that I come from a software development background. I went through the whole dot com boom, worked in Silicon Valley, did a bunch of that kind of stuff–then one day, I read the book Rich Dad, Poor Dad [by Robert Kiyosaki and Sharon Lechter] and realized that I shouldn’t be working for someone else, I should be using my skills to create products.
So I tried that, and failed, miserably. I realized that the missing piece was that you can have the best product in the world, but without good sales and marketing, it’s all for nothing.
So then, I embarked on a journey where I learned sales and copywriting and online marketing, and that started me on the road that took me to build Market Samurai.
When did you launch Market Samurai?
It launched to the public back in 2008, but we had developed the tool several years before for internal use.
In this world of online marketing, a piece of software that is still relevant and top of the class after seven years–you’ve been in this industry long enough. Most software has a short lifespan.
I found that amazing, even today, I was hooking up one of my team members with Market Samurai–so I just want to say kudos, because it’s incredible what you’ve created there. I wish more software companies operated like you!
Thanks, Derek! One thing I left out of my story was that the very first exposure I had to Internet marketing was you and Corey’s Internet Insider Secrets course. That was how I got started. It was our little bible. Talk about being around for awhile!
Let’s dig in here. The past few years you’ve been focused on content marketing and developing solutions for marketers using content marketing. What I really want to do here is dig into your knowledge on content marketing and what you’ve learned.
Let’s just start at the beginning to get everyone on the same page. What is content marketing? Why does it matter?
Content marketing is just marketing today. It’s what marketing has evolved to be. Instead of doing a lot of paid advertising is actually basically entering into a conversation with your marketplace, taking note of what they’re interested in, and putting out really great content and answering the questions that they ask.
You want to build that relationship and open up the room to talk about your products and services in relation to answering their questions and creating solutions to their problems.
It’s very different. It’s often referred to as a part of inbound marketing, where the customer finds you, rather than you finding your customers.
I agree. It’s definitely at the core segment of inbound marketing. There’s so much marketing jargon out there, it can be overwhelming–so I’m glad we defined that.
Here’s the number one challenge that I see people struggling with in content marketing today: if we go back in time, content was about writing an article. That was it, really. In the earlier days, it wasn’t even a blog, just a page.
Now, what’s happened over the past five to seven years is that the amount of accessible media to push content out over has grown. You can now do videos, slideshares, all of these different things. So what people are running into now, is how do I leverage all of these different platforms?
There’s so many different kinds of content you can create. As a solo entrepreneur or small business with limited resources, how can you be successful with content marketing?
I think the first thing with content marketing is quality. It’s one of the pivots that’s happened over the last five years is that a lot of people used to just produce a bunch of text based articles and try to write for search engines rather than human beings.
That just doesn’t work anymore. You need to write super high quality, engaging content. This gets measured now by search engines. If people don’t engage, then that’s a signal to these platforms that your content isn’t very good.
A lot of people in the Internet marketing space just take the same rubbish content that they’ve been producing and try to spam it all over the Internet.
So you need to start with quality. That being said, once you’ve got some good quality content, as an individual with limited resources but wants to be everywhere, you need to be smart about your content. How can I get the maximum bang for my buck?
To take a single piece of content and quickly turn that into video, slide decks, blog posts, and audio, but in an intelligent way, you can use one of two ways.
The traditional way is that, say you have an idea for an article. You can do a little mind map and effectively record yourself talking about this particular topic. You would go through a mind map, record yourself doing that, get that recording transcribed and edited into an article.
Through leveraging those systems, you can wind up with audio, video, slide decks, and you can build up systems for your team to leverage all of these media. That’s kind of the top down approach.
The downside is that it does take a bit of money to pay your team members. I wouldn’t recommend doing that yourself, it’s not a very good use of your time. You need to build kind of a pipeline with your team.
It absolutely does. A quick example, because that’s effectively what I do with this podcast. To summarize, it’s about taking one piece of content, and leveraging it to push it out over various platforms in various formats.
With this podcast–after it’s recorded, my team transcribes it, and turns it into an article, it gets some custom images, it gets turned into a video for YouTube, it heads out to SoundCloud, to iTunes–the one downside as Eugene mentioned is that there is a cost to doing that.
You can do it relatively cost effectively but it does take time.
I’ve got a few questions as we’re going along here–I want to talk about quality for a second.
Quality is one of those areas that really gets people stuck. First of all, how do you create quality?
I think there’s different aspects to it. The ultimate thing is that you actually deliver an outcome. People that are engaging with you, you’ve answered their question. On top of that, passion–if you’re passionate about it, it shows in your content. It exudes from it, and that makes it really engaging.
With passion, you’re able to inject your personality, too. The degree to which you can inject your personality can really lift it and make it feel like you’re really invested.
The last point is to do with uniqueness. You need to be a little different. One of our mutual friends, Steve McKnight, when he first got into it online, his particular slant was positive cash flow investment, which is very different from Australia’s usual idea.
The aspects of passion, personality, I think anyone can bring that to content–and if you’re in business and you’re not passionate, it’ll be hard to do that.
Every piece of content you create is a sale. Maybe not a product, but you’re asking people to spend time with your content. You need to sell them on that.
Initially when it came to writing articles, I was almost always trying to write it with a sales letter slant. That copywriting thing is a skill–it’s hard to do effectively.
One of the awesome things about audio and video is that you have your voice behind it, and with your voice, you can convey all of these emotions and passion just through your voice–you don’t need to be an incredible copywriter.
A couple things I want to highlight there. People will create content just for the sake of creating content, and it’s like reading a textbook. Personality is so important if you want people to actually engage with your content.
One of the roadblocks I see people hit is realizing that not every piece of content you write has to be original thought. People do this all the time, they think, I need to write a blog post. What groundbreaking thing am I going to write about? They’re afraid to reuse content.
If I could throw one piece of advice out there: there’s a ton of ways to reuse content, or give an opinion, or rewrite something in your own voice. Don’t overthink the complexity of the content you’re creating.
Having an outcome is super important. Keep it simple, keep it focused, and tie in a few different copywriting principles. My theory is that if you create a good piece of content, and someone finds it and engages, and you don’t give them a secondary step because you don’t want to sell in your article, that is a disservice.
There should be a call to action at the end to engage more. Don’t worry about not selling. If you’re giving value for free, people are going to want to engage with you. This is where a lot of these copywriting principles come into play.
I agree that using audio or video is much easier than doing it with words.
Let’s go back to what we were talking about.
Yeah, we were talking about leveraging audio or video and transforming that into other formats. That’s the traditional pipeline. I still use that, I think it’s super effective.
The second approach which I think is really interesting is instead of starting with audio and video is starting with an article, maybe something that you’ve written, and apply the pipeline to the text to turn it into audio, video, and slides.
You’d take the article or blog post, you might read and record the audio of yourself reading it out. This might make for a bit less personality, but that’s okay. Then you take that text, and turn it into a slide deck, with some nice images, and then you can time the audio to the power point, and that gives you your video.
You’ve accomplished the same thing, but you’ve started with text, and then put that through the pipeline to make other content.
If you do that, there’s a lot of advantages. You can actually automate that entire pipeline. You can write some software to take that article and to break it up into slides, select images, record audio and video, which is what we did with Content Samurai.
Awesome. So we’ve got a couple different strategies. Let’s shift gears and talk about marketing that content. It used to just be about tossing it up on your website, but now it’s about distribution. It feels like everyday there’s a new platform we have to start paying attention to!
So distribution: I have the content, now what?
That build it and they will come mentality does work to some degree. But there’s much more to it. These days, you want to go to where people are. It means being on YouTube and Vimeo and Facebook and Twitter. Be where the traffic is.
The way I look at content is that you’re creating an asset. Doing the work once, and then, over time, that asset is going to pay you back through traffic and sales.
One way to think about it is–why is Microsoft or Apple worth billions? When I started this business strategy is that Microsoft was able to capture the desktop market in the 80s. If they were able to keep their share, and the market grew exponentially, their worth will grow with it.
That multi-billion sort of company, that strategy is there. They capture a percentage of the market and they get to benefit from that.
Using that principle, it’s important to be on all of these platforms. Even with Google, when it was just starting out, if you had a great website with great content, if you could hold your ranking, you would get more traffic as people come on the Internet.
If you get in early and establish yourself in that space, your traffic will grow as the website does. That’s the idea of riding the exponential curve.
Often, there’s a kind of trust algorithm built in. If you become highly ranked in YouTube, with lots of views, likes, and comments, that signals to YouTube’s algorithms that there’s trust there. This becomes a huge asset, and it becomes more valuable over time.
If I’m answering all of these questions, and I’m the first sort of mover, those things won’t have a lot of competition. As those platforms grow over time, my traffic will grow over time too. That’s why distribution is super important. If you just put it on your website, you’ll miss all of that growth.
Definitely. This brings us to the monetization question. You’re creating this content–what are your tips for monetizing effectively?
Everyone needs to be in this business of building a list. I’ve seen business and algorithms come and go–ultimately, if you’re playing in someone else’s platform, all that needs to happen is a change in an algorithm and you’ve lost all of your work.
So you need to build your own email list. You own it, you control it. You can always go back to your list, even if the rest gets banned or deleted or slips in the ranks.
So you need to focus on leveraging your content to build an email list.
Different ways to do that–part of producing content is to direct them back to your website if they want more information, where you might have an opt-in process. Once you have the email address, you can put them into a marketing sequence.
There’s a lot of different business models around content marketing, but this is what I would recommend for your listeners.
Absolutely. We’re running out of time, so I want to talk briefly about the solution you’ve created–I’m not here to pitch software, but I love the solution you’ve created. I think it’ll take the pain out of creating content for multiple platforms.
Give us the overview of Content Samurai and how people can leverage the program to make the process easier.
We wrote Content Samurai to solve our own problems. We were making lots of videos, and we were tired of spending the time and money to make it into other forms of content because we saw that it could be automated.
So Content Samurai lets you go to an article to a video in a really short amount of time. Fifteen minutes, thirty minutes, with a little bit of interaction and it will turn your piece into a really nice chunk of content. So you put in your article as text, we break it up and create a slide deck with a bunch of layouts you can choose from. Then, we’ve made it easy to find really nice images for your slides.
Then, one of the thing that’s really annoying is recording audio. If you mess it up, you have to start over, or go back. We’ve built it in so that you record each sentence one sentence at a time.
We’ve got this crazy technology that recognizes your speech, compares it to the text, and then automatically aligns the audio or video to the script. Then, we generate a video from that input.
I want to share one thing with our listeners here. I was so blown away by this software: I took an existing article, created a video, and I didn’t have to read one help document. It was so intuitive.
I’m always trying to find tools that’s going to save me time, that has real, tangible value to me. This allows you to convert that existing content to video, and there’s no other way to do it so quickly and painlessly.
If you have existing content, that’s the place to start. You can start plugging it into Content Samurai and have more content really quickly.
I looked at Content Samurai and realized that I could easily show someone on my team how to use it, too.
Anyways, that’s my plug. On that note, thank you so much for spending time with us here, Eugene. Where can our listeners find you?
Just ContentSamurai.com. There’s a video and more information right on that website.
Thank you very much for your time today, Eugene.
My pleasure, Derek.
So there’s a ton of information for you there–lots of strategies to maximize the amount of content you can create in a short amount of time.
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