The Secret Life of my iPhone and Why All Content Should Be Mobile

Joe Pulizzi of the Junta42 blog published his third annual 2016 Content Marketing Spending Survey. (Registration for this survey is free.)

One question the survey addressed: “Products deemed important to know about in order to execute marketing strategies” — with all of the usual suspects listed: social media, blogs, video, e-newsletters, etc.

What I found interesting is that respondents decreased the importance of all of these tactics from 2009 (e-newsletters, for example, decreased from a whopping 61% to 38%!) with one exception: mobile content. Mobile content increased from 24% to 38%.

Pulizzi doesn’t define “mobile content” in his survey. Hence, my question is, with the advent of smart phones, especially the iPhone and now Google’s Android operating system, isn’t *all* content mobile?

I bought my iPhone in August 2009 after fierce resistance. All I wanted was a phone that did its job — namely, make and receive phone calls.

Now that I have the iPhone, I don’t know how I lived without it and that’s because my iPhone is not just a “phone.” I use it for almost everything *but* a phone:

flashlightE-book reader – Thanks to the iPhone Amazon Kindle app, I now read business books using my phone. I love it.

Blog reader — Using Google Reader, I read blogs while waiting in the carpool line or while standing in line at the grocery store.

E-commerce — I particularly like the Fandango app, which lets me order movie tickets.

Social media – With apps for LinkedIn and Twitter, I can keep up with my network and respond to people, too, whether I’m at home, the office, or out and about.

Calendar — I used to struggle with keeping track of events and tasks as my life was tied up in ACT!, a desktop CRM application. Now I use Google Calendar and Google Tasks — and all of the information I need is available at the push of a button. (I ditched ACT! six months ago. What a relief.)

Yellow pages — With the iPhone, I can go to a company or business Website and click on a phone number and the iPhone will automatically call it. It will also map directions. Yet, I can’t tell you how hard companies make finding this important information. Even worse, some company sites don’t show up in the Google search results on my phone — which means they lose my business. (It also means that if your business isn’t optimized for local search, you are hosed.)

Restaurant finder — Thanks to the Urban Spoon app, my son and I found a *real* Mexican food restaurant in Massachusetts. (I mean real, as in California standard real.) Like everyone else, we rated it five stars. We often use Urban Spoon to see what others think of restaurants we’ve seen around town, which means that positive online reviews have become critical to many businesses.

Flashlight — Ok, I admit it. I LOVE the Flashlight app! I often use my iPhone to light my way in dark places. 🙂

Suffice to say, smart phones like the iPhone are no longer just for making phone calls. It also means content is no longer consumed by people sitting in a chair in front a desktop computer. It’s consumed by people in bits and chunks while on the go.

You can spend a great deal of time and money creating content for mobile applications. Or, you can take that marketing budget and ensure the content you already have is accessible to people on the go.

If you own an iPhone or other smart phone, how has it changed your content viewing / consumption habits?

B2B copywriters in high demand

Karen Gedney, a ClickZ columnist, predicted five years ago that “the Internet was going to lessen the demand for copywriters.” However, she is finding her inbox is jammed, and her phone ringing off the hook, due to B2B clients wanting her services.

After attending the recent ClickZ Specifics: Email conference, she wrote an article, “Help Wanted: B2B Copywriters” where she stated a number of reasons why B2B copywriters are in high demand. I’ve listed two of them:

More is expected of B2B marketers than ever before – You must offer white papers and case studies to build credibility for your company and to use as offers for your online and offline marketing efforts.

The need for content is unrelenting — There are so many more ways to communicate than ever before including Webinars, podcasts, blogs, and online video, as well as those labor-intensive e-newsletters. And because marketing departments have to plan, budget and execute all these communications, there’s no time to actually write copy in-house.

I would also add that companies are now waking up to the fact that B2B copywriting is indeed a real skill, one that can’t be left to junior copywriters. Due to the Internet, marketers can now track results of almost all their marketing programs — making everyone, copywriters included, accountable.

(When I first started out in marcom, you would write a brochure, print up thousands, and then send them out, never knowing if the brochure resulted in leads or sales.)

Today’s B2B copywriter, therefore, needs to know how to combine Web and print copywriting strategies.

A person writing a case study, for example, has to take into account that the piece will be printed and offered as a PDF.

The copy has to be easy to scan online (no dense paragraphs, lots of bullets, attention-getting heads and sub-heads) while offering meaty copy that expertly tells the company’s story for detailed reading offline.

In order to increase viral pass-along, the copy has to be engaging — and written in plain English so that everyone influencing the purchase understands it.
Most important, it has to help generate leads.

And, it’s not enough to write the case study. The copywriter has to write the promo blurb that compels people to click on the case study and download it. In addition, he or she may have to write the direct mail letter with the case study as the offer, and/or the banner ad and landing page if it’s being used in an online promotion.

I agree with Gedney. The Internet has only increased the complexity and types of projects copywriters are now expected to write. At least that’s been my experience.
What do you think?

Five Golden Rules for Job Success

An old client posted an article on his site a few years back titled, “Guerilla Product Management: 17 Golden Rules for Achieving Success on the Job.

I recently found it while doing research for a newsletter I write. You can find the entire article here, but you’ll have to submit your email address for it.

Although the advice is geared toward product managers, anyone can read it and learn from it. So, because I don’t make New Year’s resolutions (who wants to give up mocha almond fudge ice-cream in order to lose a few pounds anyway?), I thought I’d post a few of his “golden rules” here — but edited for B2B marcom types who want to write better copy.

Rule 5 — Do research — all the time. The world is your lab. Make time to sit in the call center and listen to how orders and complaints are handled. Watch customers use your products. Read industry publications. Look at one competitor’s Website every week to see what they’re doing. Understanding your market is one of the most important skill sets you can cultivate.

Rule 7 — Get a thick skin. When you get negative feedback on your copy, instead of getting defensive, ask what idea the person is trying to communicate and why the copy isn’t working.

Rule 9 — Show your enthusiasm all day long — for your job and for your products. I live by David Ogilvy’s creed: “There are no boring products, only boring writers.”

Rule 12 — Take a hike. Get out of your office. Go to the gym. Write a poem. Paint a picture. Do yoga. As writers, we need serious downtime in order to recharge. Make the time to unwind, no matter how busy you are.

Rule 17 — Build a community. Whether you work for a company or on your own, build a community of people who support you, challenge you, and feed you new ideas. We like to think writing is done in isolation, but it’s not. Without new ideas — and the people to share them with – writers and marketers are dead meat.

Siesta Key Gets New Route To Ease Traffic

For those who want to visit Siesta Key without the trouble and stress of going through the choked streets and parking lots, this is good news. From Saturday, a new bus route linking Westfield Southgate mall all the way to Turtle Beach.

Called Route 10, the approval for this new link came on Tuesday from the commissioners in charge of the Sarasota County. The new route will increase the service to the southern flank of the ever-busy key. The line is scheduled to operate approximately every hour from 9:12 am to 10:07 pm. As of now, Siesta Key is supplied by Route 11, which will now be linked to Route 10. The limitations for the old route and regular complaints are that the buses are always overcrowded and they do not go beyond Stickney Point Road. With the opening of Route 11, passengers will be able to go even further down south.

There will now be stops at Siesta Beach, and also at the clusters of shops, restaurants and bars that line up Siesta Key Village. The stops will be every 20 to 25 minutes. This is a step in the right direction because many of the visitors who stay on Siesta Key do not rely on car hire but depend on the local transport system. That explains why many of the locals and residents are quite excited about the new development.

Major Upgrade For The 100-Year-Old Fort Myers Country Club Golf Course

Everyone is excited for the long-awaited major upgrade for the Fort Myers Country Club golf course. The famous golf course is currently closed for its major face-lift. It will stay closed until almost the end of the year  for its $5.8 million dollar renovation. Fort Myers Country Club golf course is currently empty and will stay that way for the next six months.

The funding for the major renovation for the Fort Myers Country Club golf course will not come out of the city coffers. It will not be the taxpayers who will pay for the upgrade. Instead, it will be funded by the fees collected over the years and expected grant money.

There are a lot of planned changes that will be beneficial for the residents, the golfers, and those who are just coming through from Naples or other parts of the country. Every now and then, engineers are updating the rendering design for neighbors and onlookers to see what can be expected after the changes are made.

The major change will be on the front Nine. There will also be changes on the Four and Five. Newer landscaping will be added. Two kinds of grasses will be seen on the rolling fairways that will be comparable to some of the best courses in the country. A storm water retention basin will be added. Furthermore, the irrigation system will undergo major improvements so that the course can stay open even after the heaviest rain.

The Fort Myers Country Club golf course is expected to reopen November 1. It is expected that with the major upgrade in one of the oldest golf course in Fort Myers, real estate prices ( of nearby homes will definitely increase.