What’s happening at CMA…?

There's so much going on here at CMA that it can be hard to keep up. We thought it would be a great idea to keep you up to date right here on our daily 'micro blog'.

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How’s it Thursday already?

Monday was my first day back after a proper break from work. I don’t want to say ‘holiday’, because that implies I was relaxing. Every day we had something on for the kids. It was an awesome week and we had so much fun.

Back to work for a holiday, lol!

It’s been a fast week…

I’ve been working on my lesson plan and the sales/marketing for my upcoming World-Class Communication programme. If you feel that occasionally your communication skills let you down, then you should check it out and see if you are a fit. There are only a few places left.

I’ve also added some carefully selected Letters to my personal blog, which you can read over at chrismarr.co.uk/blog

In between consulting and coaching calls, I put out a podcast that I’ve been sitting on for a few weeks now. It’s my reaction to a Social Media Examiner article that pissed me off. After getting over it, I put out a balanced response on the podcast. Listen or watch it here.

I’m looking forward to Friday and wrapping up the week before I settle into a weekend of writing and reading. If you want to know what I’m reading just now, head over to chrismarr.co.uk/library

DFTBA!

Chris.

🎧 Podcast: Google search traffic is NOT dying

Chris responds to an article published by Social Media Examiner about the death of Google search traffic, and how not only is it not dying, but in fact thriving… if you are doing the right things.

This is not a rant or a dig at SME, this is simply to restore some balance to this article as so to minimise any fear that people may have about their current marketing and sales strategies, and so they don’t feel like they should abandon a perfectly good organic search strategy.

Listen to the podcast here: Google search traffic is NOT dying

Prefer to watch? Head on over to our YouTube channel

DFTBA!

🎤 Kick Off 2020 update

We’ve been doing some work around Kick-Off today and setting the wheel in motion for it.

Kick Off will be taking place on Friday 10th January in Dundee. We’ll also be having an after/Xmas party that we’d love to see you at.

We’ve currently booked The Discovery for our venue but it looks like the room won’t work out well for the setup. We’ve been looking at other venues in Dundee including The Caird Hall and The Apex hotel. We’d love to do it at The Caird Hall – Cara is away to check it out on Friday for us. 💙

If you’re looking for somewhere to stay for Kick Off – the Premier Inn has some great pricing going on just now:

👉2 nights (Fri/Sat) – £70
👉2 nights (Thurs/Fri) – £61.50
👉1 night (Fri) – £29.50

Book here.

And if you’ve not booked your ticket yet, you can book here.

Get it locked in your diary and we’ll see you there 🙂

DFTBA!

✋ It’s not about your latest piece of content…

How long have you been building your content bank up for? How many pieces of content have you deposited in the bank? Can you access and find your content easily or do you find yourself clicking in multiple directions on your website to find it?

Do you have a search bar on your website? Is your content broken into sections on your website by format? Do you have an even balance of content covering your buyer’s journey or are there gaps?

You may be at the beginning of this content journey, building up your content balance or it might be time to start arranging your content into a structure. It might be time to invest your content. What do I mean?

People come to your website because they have a problem that needs solving. They want to see if you can solve their problem. We know this, right?

But how is your content organised on your website?

Have you split the navigation menu into videos, podcasts, blog?

Put yourself into the buyer’s shoes for a moment…

When you go to a website are you thinking “I’m going to scroll through their podcasts and see what they’ve got?” “I’m just going to check out their latest video’s and see what the chat is”

No, right? We want to know if they can solve our problem.

The longer someone has to look for something on your website, the less likely they are to stay on your website. You might have all the content that will help them see that you can solve their problem, but if they can’t find it and it’s not structured, you’ll be waving tata to them.

Let’s look at Spotify for a moment. When you are looking for something to listen to on Spotify, do you just go to the music section or do you search by mood, genre, Artist, similar artists?

When I need to focus, I’ll search for a focus playlist, or Hans Zimmer, my man, knows how to get me through a piece of writing.

Then what do Spotify do? They introduce me to similar playlists or types of music to discover. I don’t need to endlessly scroll through their music to find something that suits me.

Do you make it easy for our customers to discover your content or are you focused on the newest piece of content?

When you search on Google, Google doesn’t give you the latest content, it gives you the content that best answers your question. The one that has the best potential to solve your problem or help you get there.

How can your website be it’s own Google? We’ve done this work to become the Wikipedia of our industries. Now it’s time to become the Google of our own industries. It’s time to make it as easy as possible to move your prospective customers through the buyer’s journey.

But where do you start?

Begin by centralising your content.

If you haven’t done this already, no matter what stage you are at in your content production, begin to centralise your content.

Open the spreadsheet (or whatever format suits you best), take a note of all the content you have produced so far, then start to organise them.
What type of content is this? Does it sit in a particular topic bucket? What stage of the buyer’s journey is this piece of content for? Who is this content for? Is it for a particular product you have?

Now you have somewhere, where you can easily access your content.

What gaps do you spot? Do you need to work on more consideration pieces of content?

Start filling out the gaps.

What next?

Think about the problems you solve for customers. Get specific.

Start from the problem and write down what that content journey would look like based on the content you have right down to buying. Again, are there gaps?

Doing this work will help you to begin seeing the different journeys people can take on your website and you can begin to organise your content in a way that makes it easy for them to navigate.

Here are examples from some CMA members that do this very well:

Jammy Digital
Eagle Leisure
The Podcast Host
Content Boost

Check out this Live Training from Chris: How to organise your content so your website visitors can find it quickly and easily.

DFTBA!

😢 I’m all alone…

🎵I’m all alone, there’s no one here beside me 🎵

You know that one right, donkey from Shrek… please tell me you have seen Shrek!

As you can see I have now gone crazy from being alone at CMA while Chris and Cara are away.

Being on your own is tough right? I’m getting a glimpse of that this week. I didn’t realise how much I relied on the guys to be around for accountability. Chris has talked about this too.

It’s not accountability in the sense… have you done this yet?

It’s more the back and forth chatter, the bouncing of ideas, you’re doing this – I’m doing that kinda chat. Just the work chat that keeps us moving along productively.

Who holds you accountable for your work? Do you have someone to chat to on the occasion that keeps you going? Maybe you like working completely alone and there’s a fire inside of you that keeps pushing on?

If you’re struggling with accountability and need an extra push, pop me a message in Slack and I’ll be happy to chat it out or we can set some deadlines and I can nudge you now and then if you want that.

Here for all the nudging 🙂

I better get back to my weekly roundup thinking…

🌞We’re on a break

It’s been quiet this month in CMA. I was away at the beginning of July and Chris and Cara are away this week with their family too.

As well as all you guys taking your very much deserved breaks.

We’ve taken a wee break from The CMA Podcast Show. It’s been a whole year that we’ve stayed consistent with it and thank you to those who continue to listen. We hope it helps you.

It’s a good time for us to take a moment and review the Podcast, see what’s working and what we can do differently. We’ll be back soon with new podcast episodes for you so keep your eyes peeled for their release.

🙌 Private Coaching Channels

Over the last couple of weeks we’ve been setting up members individual private coaching channels in Slack.

We decided to do this to communicate better with everyone and to make people more comfortable asking questions that they might not want to ask publicly in Slack.

CMA runs well on feedback. You do the work, we provide feedback, you take it on and continue to do the work. It’s a constant back and forth that allows us all to move forward and grow in the quickest and best way.

It’s working brilliantly so far and we’ve seen an increase in requests for feedback which we love to see. We enjoying checking out other people’s work and watching you and your business grow.

There is only two of us so we might not get back to you instantly. I take note of requests which are added to a list in Basecamp (our project management tool). I put the time in Chris’s schedule every week, usually a Thursday, to respond to your requests. With so many of you, it’s important for us that we keep boundaries and stay efficient too.

We hope this helps. Make the most of this channel, we love to help you 🙏

📱Coaching calls: What did we discuss this week?

It’s been a busy day today with our weekly calls and CSF Q&A coaching call with Chris.

Here’s what we covered:

Weekly RoundUp Call

The main topic this week was discussing the incubation period of creativity. Nic took us through the 5 step process of creativity and explained the importance of leaving a problem when we get stuck and what our brain is doing in the background.

Catch up here.

90 Day Challenge

Some fantastic work this week from members. Each week everyone is taking on the feedback and getting better everytime. Imogen had mentioned that she’s is seeing a traffic increase to her website through her recent efforts. Amazing!

The main message this week was about really seeing things from the reader or watchers world, showing them that you understand what it is like for them. Developing empathy, trust and disarming the reader in your introduction.

Catch up here.

CSF Q&A

Great questions asked on this months Q&A. Here’s what we covered:

👉What is a good length for a video?
👉When should you start creating content when working through CSF?
👉Does a content schedule matter?
👉Writing content for buyers already in your sales process
👉Why are people not buying from you?
👉An overview of Best of/Review articles
👉Should you link to your competitors and their products?
👉Talking about competition in your content
👉Using video in your proposal process

Catch up here.

DFTBA!

Putting In-House Marketers into the position to manage leadership expectations

Today I produced the first draft of a ‘marketing agreement’ document that in-house marketers can use when their boss approaches them with a request to do some marketing to solve a specific business problem.

It will be available to download soon. Email me directly chris@cmauk.co.uk if you would like me to send you a copy.

Here’s an excerpt from the document to give you a feel for what to expect:

Your boss walks into your office and says “We need to sell more of product X or service Y. Come up with a marketing plan and some ideas and let’s make more sales.”

You get excited about the new project. You start generating ideas, making plans, looking at all the different methods and tactics you could use…and then you quickly find yourself asking questions and making assumptions about what your boss expects from you.

Sometimes you get it right, other times not so much. Sometimes your boss is happy with your work, other times not so much.

Is there something you could be doing that could make your boss happy with your work every single time? What could you do to make sure, from the very start, that both you and your boss know exactly what we’re setting out to achieve?

The problem is created at the very start. Just because your boss is telling you what to do, doesn’t mean that that they have a) identified the problem correctly or b) identified the correct solution. Often times you will be asked to do something based on what’s urgent for your leadership team, rather than what’s best.

Most people, yes, even your boss, need guidance and coaching to correctly identify a problem, and create a realistic solution to that problem.

We do that by asking the right questions, at the right time.

I’ve created this checklist of questions to help you and your boss quickly develop a marketing agreement.

This checklist will help you and your team:

1/ Identify problems and challenges accurately
2/ Reduce the number of assumptions you have to make
3/ Get clear on what you are setting out to achieve and why
4/ Allow you to do what you are best at
5/ Review your work and have something to measure success against
6/ Improve communication between departments and leadership

In short, this marketing agreement will make sure that everyone involved in this marketing project or campaign is on the same page, which will lead to a better use of resources and a better level of success for the company and everyone involved.

Everyone wins, and all we need to do is spend 10 minutes answering these questions before you start working on your marketing plan.

Catching up…

Nic has been on annual leave this past few weeks, and I’ve been in ‘part-time’ mode.

We’re both back to work full-time this week and looking forward to catching up.

We’ll be back with a new blog and a new podcast episode this week, so keep an eye on your email inbox 🙂

DFTBA!

Chris.