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We’re in the thick of a new year, and like many professionals, marketers are searching for the next top trends to drive results in 2017. 

This and every year, we search for ways to break through the clutter to ensure our content reaches the right audience at the right time. But with the number of bloggers projected to hit more than 31 million by 2020 in the U.S., it’s our duty to seek out and test the hottest trends to make our content stand apart from the rest. 

According to a 2016 study by Content Marketing Institute, B2C marketers ranked the following as top content priorities:

  • 73% indicate that they want to create more engaging content.
  • 55% want to create more visual content.
  • 44% say that better repurposing content is a must.

Luckily, there’s a surefire strategy that satisfies the needs listed above: visual content marketing. Let’s face the facts that our audience craves visuals: The brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than text, and we read only 28% of written content. 

Are you still contemplating how you’ll incorporate visual content marketing into your 2017 strategy? Check out the list below for three ways to rely on visuals this year to drive results.

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The proliferation of marketing channels, apps, mobile devices, social networks and content has given consumers more choices and greater control, while increasing complexity for marketers.

We want to help simplify and optimize the marketing planning process for your business.

Use the following marketing game plan model, as featured in Chapter 10 of The Marketing Performance Blueprint, to build core strength, spur growth through existing assets, connect actions to outcomes and allocate resources based on performance. There are three phases—evaluate, establish and execute (e3)—made up of 15 steps.

Most organizations and enterprises should complete these steps at least annually to guide long-term planning. For small businesses, start-ups and short-term goals, we'd recommend following our hackathon model to identify quick wins and accelerate success. 

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“The marketing industry is moving too fast to internalize everything.” — Paul Roetzer, The Marketing Performance Blueprint 

In spite of having more channels, more technology and more data than ever before, marketers are still struggling to make, and measure, an impact on the bottom line. Obsessive planning is all too often mistaken for strategy, leaving teams dutifully following checklists that are leading them nowhere.

Instead, a rapidly shifting landscape requires an equally agile response. The solution? The Marketing Growth HackathonTM.

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In the age of Amazon-style buying, customers expect instant answers and hassle-free purchasing. 

Plus, competition is virtually everywhere you look. In one click, customers can abandon your site and move on to a competitor who offers faster, easier service.

Our one saving grace to retain recurring sales is through customer loyalty. It’s no secret that many businesses rely on the loyalty of returning customers, as it costs nearly 10 times more to acquire a new customer than to retain an existing one.

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“Strategy is a system of expedients; it is more than a mere scholarly discipline. It is the translation of knowledge to practical life, the improvement of the original leading thought in accordance with continually changing situations.”

— Helmuth von Moltke

Brands have a major problem using the S-word. The term strategy is so overused by marketing departments and agencies that it is, in many cases, meaningless. They build marketing or content strategies. They think or act strategically.

Too often, marketers are irresponsibly using strategy and its variants as synonyms for planning.

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Marketers face more pressure than ever to deliver real ROI on their marketing efforts. The good news: it’s the best time to be a performance-driven marketer. The tools, technology and talent available to build, execute and measure high-impact campaigns have never been more widely available.

But with the opportunities come obstacles from the sheer number of available courses of action. In a sea of available metrics, which ones are actually important? And once you determine that, what do you do with them?

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You know the drill. As marketers, we are forever pressed for creative, performance-driven ideas. In the era of fast-paced, connected consumers, we must constantly evolve to prove our marketing success. And, we must do it quickly. 

In a recent blog post, Paul Roetzer articulates the challenge: 

“There have never been more choices for marketers. There has never been more noise. There has never been more demand for performance.” 

To solve for business growth challenges, PR 20/20 organized an interactive Cleveland HubSpot User Group (HUG) event on Wednesday, March 23 featuring the Marketing Growth HackathonTM. In as little as one hour, attendees collaborated to come up with campaign ideas that could be activated in as little as 30 to 90 days. (Sending a special thanks to Advance Ohio for hosting the event!)

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Who doesn’t love a good round up of predicted trends every New Year? Marketers are especially into emerging mediums, as it’s imperative we build our activities and tactics around the latest and greatest innovations.

Now that we’re nearing the end of the first quarter, we’ve noticed a reoccurring prediction for this year: video marketing. Our consumers are demanding video content more than ever, and here are a few numbers to prove it

  • 100 million Internet users watch online video every day.
  • 90% of online shoppers indicate they find video helpful for buying decisions.
  • 65% of executives visit a marketer’s website after viewing a video online.
  • Emails that include videos have a 96% higher click through rate.

Video has been on the scene for quite some time, but now it’s becoming a must-have piece of marketing strategies. It’s normal to feel that you may not have the proper equipment or skill to give into this trend. But, don’t fear because there are plenty of ways to quickly and easily incorporate video into your 2016 marketing plans.

Continue reading for three ways marketers can dive right into the video trend.

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Update: This offer has expired. To access exclusive templates that compliment The Marketing Performance Blueprint, download the Performance Pack Plus.

Are you struggling to recruit and train a modern marketing team? Drive digital marketing transformation in your organization? Adapt more quickly to an exploding marketing technology landscape? Create a connected customer experience? Prove marketing ROI to the executive team?

If you answered yes to any or all of the above, you're not alone.

In The Marketing Performance Blueprint, Paul Roetzer outlined many of the challenges facing marketers today, and what it takes to overcome industry-wide gaps in talent, technology and strategy. But understanding is only the first step—after all, "High performers differentiate by doing, not planning."

That's why, for a limited time, we're offering a collection of exclusive resources with bulk purchases of The Marketing Performance Blueprint. Packages are available for 5, 10, 25, 50, 100, 300 and 500 copies. 

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Marketers: 101 Ways to Add Value

Posted by Jessica Miller on December 18, 2015

“Create more value than you capture.”  Tim O’Reilly’s quote is one to live by for anyone in the service industry, on a team, or interested in being an overall good human.

At PR 20/20, we’re constantly brainstorming ways to add more value for our clients. As our CEO penned in The Marketing Performance Blueprint, we’re continually working to differentiate by doing.” Why? Well at the end of the day, how businesses perform impacts our economy, cities, and our own livelihood. When you can tie marketing efforts to bottom-line business results, you’ve created value.

The following is a running list that compiles ideas from our entire team around the theme of creating value—or becoming the best value contributors we can be, versus value consumers.

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