Nuggets of Knowledge, From Our Team to Yours

Arthur reading

If you hadn’t picked up on it already, the Mack Web Team is pretty crazy about the book-learnin’.

(Please refrain from any jokes on other ways in which we are crazy or about how, yes, we can read, thank you. Not because we’re easily offended but…frankly, we’ve already made them all and we can’t spare the time for redundancy).

Each member of the team spends a pretty big portion of the week reading and absorbing knowledge and trying things out. We’ve decided to let you in on just a few of the things that we’ve learned this month (‘cuz we’re all about the edumacating, too).

So, here. Read some stuff. Learn some stuff. Get smarter.

And hey, let us know: what was your favorite article this month?


Ayelet’s Pick

Social Engagement Metrics That Matter – Measuring, Tracking, and Reporting FTW

by Jennifer Sable Lopez

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Ayelet’s pick of the month

In the daily list of things I think about, social media engagement metrics appears easily at least once, frequently more. Lately, I’ve been sorting through the tangle that is qualitative metrics in the quantitative-heavy world of social media metrics. Reading this post gave me relief in knowing others are fighting this same mental battle and that I have much to learn from them.

Jennifer Sable Lopez offers a real-life view into how Moz uses social media metrics to show engagement, without making it seem like they have everything all figured out. She doesn’t leave anything out, talking about everything from the Moz’s important engagement metrics to how they track and report them to how they communicate the progress to their stakeholders (aka the rest of the team).

The inside peek into how Moz is measuring and tracking social engagement metrics alone makes this post well worth the read.

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Courtney’s Pick

The Complete Guide to Working with Copywriters

by Joel Klettke

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Courtney’s pick of the month

This is by no means a new addition to the vasty deeps of Web Marketing Know-How (check out that dateline: September 2013, an excellent vintage). That said, it has been a huge influence and resource in my life this month as I work on figuring out the needs and processes and gaps and other necessary paraphernalia for expanding, scaling, and – honestly? – kinda creating (not quite from whole cloth, but maybe…half cloth?) the Mack Web Content Department.

This fella is chock-full not only of the tips and tricks and resources suggested by the title (though those are there) but really for building a content department. (See why I like it?). I’m particularly fond of the Style Guide idea which not only makes introducing your writers to the clients they’ll be serving but also gives you a great mechanism for distilling and articulating some pretty important stuff about them clients themselves.

Multi-tasking. It is the poor man’s personal assistant.

So, yes. It’s a long(ish) sucker but not needlessly so and well-worth the time in any case. A great read for the exhausted content strategist, the bemused client (why is it so hard for them to find a writer?), and the eager copywriter (but hey, use it as a guideline not a cheatsheet. Nobody likes a cheater).

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Mack’s Pick

Are You Winning the Attention Auction

by AJ Kohn

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Mack’s pick of the month

Content marketing has hit the mainstream which means many companies are using content to build their businesses, their communities, and their brands. Many of these companies are approaching content marketing without a higher purpose, goals, or even a strategy. This leads to poor content creation which is essentially causing a saturation problem. Which will, eventually, make it a whole lot harder to earn the attention and trust from the readers and brand advocates you’re seeking.

Now more than ever, it’s imperative that your content comes with intention. How will it stand above the growing noise? How can it be relevant today and also serve as a resource tomorrow? Who is it helping? Is it uniquely you? How will it foster relationships or even tell the story of your company’s personality and prowess?

Your content must pave a path in your reader’s brain, making a meaningful impact so that it is not only remembered but shared. I highly recommend this long read from the brilliant AJ Kohn.

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Nat’s Pick

GoodUI

by Jakub Linowski

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Nat’s pick of the month

Good UI is a key ingredient to conversion rates and branding. Get this right and you’re gonna have people staying on your site and enjoying the experience.

That’s why I’ve chosen to highlight goodui.org. (Seriously, this website is going to get you excited about user interface, of all things). The website is chock full of tips and ideas like: trying a one column layout instead of multicolumn, using social proof instead of talking about yourself, using benefit buttons instead of task based ones, etc. If you have a UI conundrum or simply want to test some new things out, I highly recommend taking a look at this ever growing list of ideas. Plus, if you’re a visual learner (like me) you’ll really appreciate the wireframe examples that come with each tip.

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Rebecca’s Pick

82% of Women Think Social Media Drives the Definition of Beauty 

by Samantha Murphy Kelly

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Rebecca’s pick of the month

As a pre-teen in the pre-social media days, my sense of beauty was mainly defined by images in Seventeen magazine and 80s romantic comedies (cue Berlin’s “Take My Breath Away”). Now that I’m 30-uh-something, I’d like to think that I’m no longer shackled to those unrealistic standards.

But let’s face it: there’s a reason why I can still remember every word to Return of the Jedi. It’s because at that age, you’re a human sponge. And at that age, I was also absorbing what it meant to be (unrealistically) beautiful.

Enter social media.

For those who say social media is the next television (you know, that thing that will eat away at the brains of our youth), listen up. Thanks in part to various social platforms, we may be witnessing a turning of the tide, in which women are starting to define beauty for themselves. Dove’s beauty study also suggests more good news: the effects may be retroactive, impacting daughter and then mother.

This article, while not purely academic, is a great reminder that social media offers us all (especially teens) access to multiple points of view not easily available to us in recent history – and it can be used as a medium for positive social change. I’d give that a +1.

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Join the discussion 2 Comments

  • Ryan Glass says:

    The Attention Auction is an awesome article, I definitely spent a few days going over that one and discussing it with folks around the office. Nat’s recommendation is a new one on me but looks really good. Thanks for the post.

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