Some people learn best from reading, but others prefer to watch or listen to content. Although you probably put a lot of time into your blog, website, and other written marketing products, multimedia content is becoming increasingly more popular. Knowing where to begin and how to make the process more efficient just might be the key to your success as a marketer.
Today, we’re talking to Ander Frischer, the marketing educator at Instapage. He’s going to share his insights on how he handles the process of creating multimedia content, plus a whole lot more. You won’t want to miss today’s episode!
Some of the highlights of the show include:
- Information about Instapage, including their impressive conversion rate.
- A few tips on landing page advertising personalization and why A/B testing is so important.
- Why it’s so important to include multimedia content in any marketing strategy.
- How Ander integrated interactive multimedia content into the marketing strategy at Instapage and what he was hoping to achieve.
- How personalization has helped boost project results at Instapage.
- Some insights on the process for launching a webinar.
- Ander’s process for organizing a podcast.
- Tips for getting quality engagement from your listeners or readers.
- Ander’s best advice for someone who wants to get started with adding multimedia content to their marketing strategy.
Nathan: You already know blog posts, landing pages and ebooks are extremely useful forms of educational content. But how can you reach your audience members who don’t necessarily learn best from reading? That’s where multimedia content comes into play. That’s why you and I are chatting with Ander Frischer today on the Actionable Marketing Podcast.
Ander is the marketing educator at Instapage. He’s the person who manages Instapage’s amazing podcast and webinars. Ander has tons of experience to share with you today about multimedia content, the processes he uses behind the scenes to work extremely efficiently and a whole lot more. I’m Nathan from CoSchedule, let’s chat with Ander.
Nathan: Hey Ander, thanks a lot for joining me on the podcast today.
Ander: It is a pleasure to be here, Nathan. Happy to help out CoSchedule and this CoSchedule Podcast. Honored to be here.
Nathan: And we’re happy to have you. To kick this off, I was wondering if you could tell me about Instapage and what you do there.
Ander: Sure. Instapage is the most powerful landing page platform for teams and agencies and we’re the most powerful platform, were also the simultaneously easiest to use. Our mission is to continually lower the cost of customer acquisition and do this with personalized advertising. We believe that one of the lowest hanging fruits by which to do this is with personalized landing pages, to create a page for every single promotion or even every single ad that you’re running.
Nathan: Your team at Instapage has just tons of experience and expertise on landing page optimization, obviously. I was actually cruising your site, I saw that you have more than a million landing pages with a conversion rate of more than 25%.
Ander: It’s a little bit higher than that now, I believe. The last thing I saw was about 28% which is incredibly impressive. I’m personally really proud of that number and the rest of my team is as well.
Nathan: Could you give us just a few actionable tips on landing page optimization?
Ander: Instead of giving you some tips on optimization, I want to speak a little to advertising personalization. I’ll tell you why, landing page optimization, there are some best practices, you want to use messaging and language that your audience can relate to. You want to have user-friendly design and you want to have a call to action that pops out. You want to have a singular call to action, that’s very important, to not have a bunch of distractions on the page that can detract from the value proposition that is articulated in that ad and in that landing page. But I like to hold back from giving one size fits all optimization tips and that’s because every single use case is different, every single business is different, and every single product is different, every single promotion is different.
What works best for one person or one business might not work best for another, that’s one of the reasons that AB testing is important. The one thing that is universal to landing pages as a vehicle for lowering the cost of customer acquisition through digital advertising is advertising personalization.
What we’ve seen here at Instapage and what I’ve seen throughout my career as a marketer is there are so many companies and so many individuals that are running these very highly-targeted ads. We have this really incredible ability to target such specific audiences with our digital advertising and they create this very focused message and copy that speaks to that specific audience and then a lot of the time, that traffic from that ad is directed to a generic page whether it’s a homepage or a generic landing page. Having a personalized page for every single ad is going to maintain the level of personalization you sought out to do in the first place with your advertising. That is the one general rule of thumb that should a company every advertising landing page is that level of advertising personalization.
Nathan: That seems like a great transition in the conversation that we want to have today. Specifically about multimedia content. When we think about content marketing a lot of times, it’s just this blog post, right? But you guys are obviously specialists in landing pages and you yourself work with webinars and podcast. I know you have a video team. That’s what I wanted to explore in this conversation with you, is this idea of multimedia content. I was wondering if you could explain why it’s important to include multimedia projects in your marketing strategy.
Ander: Sure. I’d be happy to discuss that. I have unique background in that. I have a broadcasting degree. I started my career as a radio DJ. Here in Instapage, our CEO, Tyson Quick, has done a really great job of prioritizing really high quality multimedia content and he did so from the beginning. He started out by hiring a full-time video team, we have three full time video team members here right now. We’re hiring another very soon and he hired me to run our podcast and our webinar marketing campaign, marketing initiatives.
Why this kind of content is so important is that people consume content in different ways. While you might be an auditory learner, I might be a visual learner, I might be someone who learns better from reading content or perhaps an infographic or something like that. There is that value to it, there’s also the value of being in a number of different places on a number of different platforms with the podcast, you’re on iTunes, you’re on Stitcher or Google Play or any of the other distribution platforms that you use to let people know about your podcast and for them to listen to it. That also applies, by the way, to YouTube or anywhere where you’re hosting videos or even if you’re just putting info graphics on Pinterest or something like that.
The other thing that’s important is the quality of engagement that you get from different types of content. The quality of engagement that comes from someone listening to a podcast is very different than from an ebook or a white paper or even a video. The way that I like to explain it, and Nathan, given that you’re the host of this podcast, I imagine that you understand, but this is almost like you and I are having a conversation with all of the listeners, all of the worldwide audience that I imagine you guys have. It’s almost like they’re a fly on the wall in the room with us. It’s a very high quality one-on-one type of engagement.
The same thing applies to webinars. When you’re doing a webinar, it’s almost like a one-to-many sales call. But if you do it the right way, you can present it in a very personalized one-to-one experience, something that has a higher quality of engagement than someone who might be browsing through a blog post while they have Gmail open and the TV is on and they’re listening to Spotify, who knows what else is going on on their computer.
Nathan: I totally see that importance, lots of different people learn in different ways. Visual auditory, it’s really easy for content marketers to concentrate on people who learn best from reading. It makes it fun to explore this conversation with you. And actually, I can tell you at CoSchedule too, we’ve been launching some different sorts of projects too. We’ve got webinars, we’ve got courses, we’ve got this podcast. We just started a new culture series variety.
Ander: Right. Really into that, very cool.
Nathan: Yeah. I’m wondering if you can share what kinds of marketing projects were you doing before you started doing this multimedia content? What were you doing with you strategy?
Ander: I joined Instapage in June of last year. In fact, most of the employees here at our San Francisco office are fairly new. We’ve grown tremendously in the past year and a half. I feel like we’re always hiring somebody new, there’s always someone new here because we’re growing that quickly.
I came in and I hit the ground running immediately with this podcast and this webinar content. I wouldn’t even say that there was something we weren’t necessarily doing before we got into this multimedia, it’s always been a very important part of our strategy, to create really high-quality multimedia experiences for anybody who is going to interact with us on social media, on YouTube, on our own site, in email, whatever it might be.
We do everything else that you might expect from a modern marketing organization including marketing automation and we have someone working full time on SEO, we do a lot of paid acquisition, a lot of digital advertising, as well as persona development, etc. But I would say that we’ve been involved in a heavy multimedia video podcast, etc. strategies since we started and that’s what I would advocate for many and most modern marketing organizations if you have the bandwidth and resources to do so.
Nathan: You’re obviously prioritizing multimedia projects in your strategy. What were you hoping to achieve? Or what’s the goal behind all of it?
Ander: I wouldn’t say that we’re prioritizing multimedia over written content or over other channels for that matter because everything works together so well and it’s important that it is like that. The podcast content feeds into the blog and the video content feeds into the webinars and we find a lot of effective ways to repurpose content and make sure that everything is mashing together in a very effective conversion friendly way. I can’t speak to the specific goals and the KPIs of this type of content as opposed to content that might be written.
An ebook is going to be used very frequently for lead generation, capturing an e-mail address. A blog might be used for SEO purposes, might be used to create additional value for retention, for reactivation with your customers that might not be as engaged with your product as they once were or as you would like them to be.
I’ll start with podcasting and the specifics of why podcasting is so awesome. As you might have noticed, Nathan, podcasting is an interesting medium and that it’s fairly difficult to track in terms of attribution. You can’t necessarily take a sale or take a growth in revenue and directly attribute it to a podcast, attribution is one of the things that we all struggle with as marketers so much, especially content people.
What are we going to be measured by? Are we going to be measured by the direct traffic that a specific blogpost has? Are we going to be measured by the number of marketing qualified leads, whatever it might be?
In the case of a podcast, what I really see a podcast is an excellent resource for internally within a marketing team is for branding and also for building relationships. It’s a great opportunity to cultivate relationships just like what we’re doing right now Nathan, CoSchedule and Instapage. We’re having this great conversation and I imagine that we’ll be featured in a post on your site, I’d love to have your CEO on at some point and we’d do the same, it’s a great thing in terms of relationship building and also providing a higher level of brand experience in terms of brand exposure.
Webinars are a little bit different. Depending on the type of webinar you’re doing, the goals and KPIs might change. If you’re doing something that is called a soft cell webinar, and that’s the idea of inviting people in the very top of your funnel, perhaps they have some brand awareness in a few touches or maybe they are brand new to your brand perhaps, they don’t even have awareness of the problem that your product helps them solve. This soft cell webinar is geared towards providing value and establishing this problem that your product helps them solve and showing them how you can solve that problem with your product.
Normally, at the end, there’s some sort of offer or pitch or something like that. But it’s almost like an opportunity to take someone through the entire funnel in the span of an hour. They join the webinar, you introduce them to the brand, you introduce them to the problem, educate them about why it’s such a problem to begin with and then, educate them about the most effective and scalable solution. That said, if you have a webinar that maybe is introducing a new feature or introducing a new integration or something like that, that might be better served towards your existing users or perhaps targeted towards the users of that integration and introducing them to your brand.
In some cases, you want to be tracking sales, in some cases, you’re just looking for the number of eyeballs, the number of attendees, number of reviewers you have on that webinar. The other thing that’s great about it is like a podcast, you do get that somewhat one-to-one type of engagement. What’s great about that is you are personifying your brand, you are creating a voice for you as an individual that is representing your brand and allow someone to connect that brand with a face, with a name and with a voice.
Nathan: I think that’s a good transition to talk a little bit about personalization. You mentioned that your team, you actually have a person who focuses on personas. Could you help me understand how personalization has helped you boost your results with the projects that you work on at Instapage?
Ander: Yeah, absolutely. We don’t have one person whose exclusive focus is personalization and persona development because it’s important to all of us here at Instapage. It’s something that we pretty much all focus on and we’re pretty relentless at making sure that’s an important part of what we do.
The thing about personalization that’s so important is customizing the value proposition of something to a certain type of person and creating content that is going to meet those individual needs. For example, if somebody has indicated, one way or another, that they want to know more about AB testing, that’s the situation where it would be especially effective to provide them with a resource focused on AB testing.
It also comes down to where they are in the funnel, if they’re top of funnel, middle of funnel, bottom of funnel, wherever they might be. There might be different content that’s better suited towards them in a different time. For example, during our free trial right now, at this moment in time, there’s a certain point where we provide the opportunity to attend a demo webinar. We basically show people how to use the product. There’s a specific time within that free trial where it might be most appropriate to invite them to that webinar and most effective both for them to create value for them and as well as for our conversion rates.
Nathan: Alright Ander, let’s say we’re over the fear of starting and we’re looking at launching webinars. Let’s just start with webinars. I was wondering if we could explore what does your process look like for organizing a webinar.
Ander: I would say that the most important and first thing that you should in addition to understanding webinars and why you should do them and also looking at the general production process, what people get into, how they move throughout the process and how they execute. A lot of people I find don’t take the time to make sure that their entire organization understands why they are engaging in this type of content, why they’re focusing on webinars and podcasts.
Webinars, as an example, are integrated marketing. They involve everybody on your team. If you’re driving traffic through digital advertising, perhaps there’s marketing automation involved, inviting people through email. You need design resources to be able to create a presentation deck and perhaps you also need to work with some engineers to make sure that your webinar platform is sinking up with the rest of third party tools that you use.
It’s easiest to do this if everyone has a clear understanding of why you’re doing it in the very first place. That is the thing that I would say is the less obvious and still very, very important thing that you’re going to want to do when you engage or you start engaging in a webinar marketing campaign, webinar marketing strategy.
Nathan: I guess similarly, I know you manage Instapage’s advertising influencer’s podcast and you’ve talked about it just a little bit. I know you have a lot of advice to share on organizing everything behind the scenes for that. What does your process look like for organizing a podcast?
Ander: The podcast is very much the same process that goes into a webinar. The difference is that the podcast comes out every single week, we do an episode every week released on Wednesday. At this point, once the podcast is launched, it somewhat runs on autopilot in that I take the lead on it, it’s something that happens in the background the same way that it would happen with your blog if you’re publishing three, four, five pieces of content in a week. Your content marketing manager or your managing editor, whoever is managing that process is going to be overseeing all that content, making sure it’s pushed out while other members of your marketing team might be focusing on more time sensitive or time relevant types of campaigns, types of content.
But that said, it’s still very important to make sure that all the stakeholders and all of the collaborators within your team and externally are very clear on what their role is and what their expectations are in terms of helping out with the podcast. Making sure that everybody’s on the same page that the goals of your podcast, the KPIs of your podcast are well defined, both within the leadership of your organization and your other individual contributors is going to be essential to making success for that to happen.
Nathan: Very smart, Ander. We know that marketing exist to drive profitable customer action, you were just talking about goals. I was wondering if you could share a little bit more about how has adding multimedia content in your marketing strategy boosted your results?
Ander: This is something that I touched on just a moment ago. But I think what’s really interesting about my role specifically, we have somebody who manages our blog here, uses CoSchedule all the time, I use it with him when I write for the blog. We have somebody who runs basically every single one of our marketing channels. When I was hired here in Instapage and kudos to Tyson, our CEO, for thinking this way. He hired me just to do webinars and a podcast. What that’s done is it has created this very interesting job that I’ve never really had any job quite like this before and I don’t know many companies in our stage as a growing company that have this type of position of a marketing educator.
We have a few people in our company that have more public facing roles. Brandon, who runs our blog, emails come from him, some of our heads-up messages and emails come from me, there’s our CEO, Tyson Quick, who is a thought leader in his own right especially when it comes to advertising personalization.
What’s really neat is that instead of somebody reaching out to your help desk and throwing their email into the void, who knows where it’s going to go, whatever platform they’re using for their customer support and customer success management, you’re actually able to contact and reach out to an individual. Somebody that perhaps through the course of a podcast or a webinar, you’ve spent some one-on-one time with, I suppose you could say, and providing that face, providing that voice, providing that personality with this type of content and letting your audience, your customers, your prospective customers, letting them into your world and providing that level of transparency does really, really good things. It creates a deeper level of engagement with them, it creates a voice, it creates a persona, something that your company means to them instead of just being a software as a service product or just being a tool.
Nathan: I love that idea. It’s almost like you’re using content to build a real relationship.
Ander: Yeah, that’s exactly what it is. It’s about cultivating real relationships with your customers. I don’t personally believe in what I call a one off transactional networking experience and that’s what this is. I feel like when I’m doing a podcast, I’m sort of networking with anybody who’s listening to it. I do love hearing from anybody who’s listening to the show. That’s probably the most rewarding thing about what I do, is hearing from people and hearing about their specific pain points or even after they just want to say hello. Having that kind of engagement is important. In fact, if we have time, I can tell you a very quick story from something like that.
Nathan: Yeah, let’s hear it.
Ander: Yeah. When I was at my previous company, I was hosting a podcast that is no longer live but it was focused on career development and it was called Fearless Careers. The most valuable experience that I got out of doing that for our marketing team and for our content team was actually taking the time when I got an email from someone. I saw that it was thoughtful, they were commenting on something I said, I would reach out to them and see if I could get them on the phone for just five minutes.
It’s not a scalable strategy, it’s not something that you can do with every single person that reaches out to you or contacts you or whatever, obviously we have limited resources. When you can do that every once in awhile, when you can lend someone five minutes in your day to just get to know them a little bit, get a little feedback from them or whatever, that is the thing that they are going to tell their families about when they go home for dinner. What happened at work today? Oh, I had this conversation with this guy at this company. He reached out to me. It was really cool. That’s the kind of thing people talks about and that’s the kind of thing people remember. The quality engagement you get out of that is incredibly high and it’s also a rewarding experience on a personal level.
Nathan: Yeah. I can definitely echo that. It’s really fun for us to talk to customers and really hear from them or even just listeners like this and try to make this podcast more about them than it is about us.
Nathan: Ander, I have one question for you. I know that you have just tons of experience with webinars and podcasting in general, for someone who’s new to this, maybe looking at adding more content types into their marketing strategy, where should they start? What advice would you give them?
Ander: I would say, first and foremost, talk to your users or look at what other content they are engaging with. One thing that a lot of people get scared of when they encounter this need for new types of marketing for video, for podcasting, for webinars, whatever it may be, is I have to create all this new content and you are going to be creating a new content, that’s part of the game, but you can repurpose a lot of the content you already have. I would be willing to bet if you have three or four ebooks, there’s enough content in those ebooks to be taken and transformed and repurposed with a new point of view to turn into a webinar.
Look at your existing assets, look at what you already have and that should ease some of the anxiety around launching these brand new marketing programs, multimedia marketing programs specifically.
Nathan: Yeah. Ander, I thinks that’s really great advice and a good place for us to start working at more than just blogging or just whatever we’re doing right now. I guess with that Ander, that’s a wrap. Thanks for all the help to help us understand why including more multimedia content strategy is important. I appreciate it.
Ander: Yeah, absolutely! Nathan, it was a pleasure coming on this show and hope everybody got a lot of value out of this and especially a lot of thanks to people who listened all the way to the end. Cheers to you!