This episode is all about the power of zero-click content. You’ll learn why you should be testing it in your marketing strategy and a new segment where we ask each other marketing questions that we have to answer in 30 seconds or less. Stay tuned for more Stori & Alex episodes where we discuss current events in marketing.
Alex Meade, Beacons Point, VP of Sales & Marketing
Alex is the VP of Sales & Marketing at Beacons Point, a leader of HubSpot User Groups, the host of the B2B Growth Marketer Podcast, and a collector of Kurt Vonnegut books and San Diego craft beer.
Stori Pemberton, Beacons Point, Marketing Manager
Stori is the Marketing Manager at Beacons Point. Social media, writing blogs, and SEO are some of her biggest marketing interests. When she’s not working, she loves to be outside with her dogs and fiance.
Alex Meade 0:06
Welcome to the b2b growth Marketer Podcast. My name is Alex Meade. I’m your host, and today we have our q&a episode and we have Stori back Stori. Welcome. Hey, Alex. All right story, today, we’re gonna have a quick conversation around something called Zero click Content. And I think, you know, this is something I feel like I’ve seen pop up more and more in the last few weeks. I don’t think it’s a new concept or term, but maybe it’s just kind of having a resurgence. So maybe if you don’t mind, give us like your definition or the definition of what zero click Content means.
Stori Pemberton 0:45
So zero click Content is kind of a form of no gatekeeping. So you’re not hiding any of your content behind a wall, you’re not making anyone jump through hoops to grab a content offer, or what you’re trying to teach someone. It’s more about building trust and an audience and like, a conversation around that topic instead of posting just to have someone linked to your website. So that’s like the premise.
Alex Meade 1:09
So like, okay, let’s talk if zero-click content. So if I was to post this podcast, you know, or like, let’s say an article that we write, saying a little like blurb and then saying, you know, here’s the link is that that’s, that’s what we’re talking about here. Like that’s, that is click Content, the meat of it is on the website, and they have to click to get it. So zero click
Stori Pemberton 1:33
any hidden it takes you
Alex Meade 1:34
elsewhere. Yeah, so it’s more about using the channel for like the medium, and giving as much of it as you can in that medium versus, versus a tease and then go back to our website to download it.
Stori Pemberton 1:53
Alex Meade 1:54
And why so yeah. Keep going.
Stori Pemberton 1:58
I’m just gonna Yeah, you got
Alex Meade 2:00
your Why? Why are people why is this a thing now? Like, why are people is it? Is it something we’re experimenting with? Is it people that are just realizing, no one’s clicking on the links? Like, why is this something we’re talking about? Now?
Stori Pemberton 2:14
I think that a good like, it was kind of taking place a while ago, but like a resurgence of is popped up because LinkedIn posted a whole article about it back like last year in September, about how they’re not going to favorite content that leads them off of the platform that they’re trying to build more and more like content on it make sense? So anything that’s going to take you to a splash page that says, hey, you’re leaving, they don’t want that, like, why would they want somebody to leave. And something that I noticed was that like, somebody that I follow her name is Amanda, and she works for spark to her. And she kind of, I wouldn’t say coined it, because it’s been around, but she’s definitely brought like light to it. And she’s really cool. And our posts are awesome. But she’s building more graphics and more blogs about all this for us to follow along with. And there’s been a few people that I’ve said, like, does this affect it? Does this affect it? And there’s different, like, very baby studies that people have been doing. But I think the biggest thing is like there’s a power struggle, so you want to send someone to a blog, and you really want their email, but why are they going to give your email? And then vice versa? Like, why are we going to give someone random, our content, so it has to be about before you publish it, and everything, before you start to really realize that like, Can I do zero click Content in my medium, is, is it going to benefit you like is your main purpose of being on LinkedIn to build a cut like a community, if it’s not, if you’re just there to publish your stuff, and don’t lose your click, because you’re not gonna get emails, you’re not gonna get anything that you anything tangible. But with something with like, zero, click, you’re building a bigger trust. I don’t know, I keep using the word gatekeeping. That’s how I feel it is I feel it’s like, there’s this content offer. But we need this. And if you’re just more transparent about like, hey, we have this awesome way of doing content, here’s a, b, and c all worded like in a whole post. People are gonna engage with that more, I feel like I even engaged with stuff more that’s rather than like, just go to my site, do this. It’s like, No, tell me why I need to go to your site. Yeah. And I think as a consumer looking, and it makes sense. But you also see the business side point where it’s like, well, I want these emails, I want these contacts. So you have to kind of figure out what you want.
Alex Meade 4:23
Yeah, it’s interesting that you kind of started saying it was something that maybe was like, pushed because of the algorithms, you know, social media is they don’t want you to leave their website like just like when people come to your website, you don’t want them to leave. Same thing with like LinkedIn, they don’t want you to leave. And it seems like it’s kind of taken a different a different tactic where it’s provide value, give them everything they would need to make a good informed decision, and for you to become trusted, and I think that is a little bit of a shift also in all of this Marketing right now, where it stopped trying to get leads. So email addresses, just to hit a vanity metric to show your boss or your CEO, and actually drive real opportunities and revenue. So forget about, you know, hey, we have to get 100 leads to get 50 MQL to get 20 SQL is to get one customer, like, let’s just figure how to get a customer. And I like I’ve seen, there’s a lot of LinkedIn creators out there that have kind of been following this. You know, like, Justin Welsh, Nick Bennett, I mean, like, there’s, there’s like, I can kind of go on, and it’s be an expert first, and people will come second without you asking them to. So talk about okay user experience, forget that you’re a marketer, and we are trying to get people onto our mailing list and all these things. What about like the experience? So if you’re just scrolling, Instagram or LinkedIn? Is it is it a better experience? Like if a new sites do this, it drives me crazy. They’ll say, like, a headline and a photo of something, and you have to click on their news story website to go find what you want. Is it about I mean, I think I just described it’s a better experience, why is it a pay for? Yeah, why is it a better experience to scroll through your feed and see and learn things there versus after you click out?
Stori Pemberton 6:28
People are lazy. And I think that if it’s there and ready to grab, they’re gonna enjoy that more than having to dig and sift through everything else. Like there’s a new site here in Bluffton, South Carolina that if you get like two article reads, and then after that, you start paying for it. And it’s like, so that’s a, that’s kind of an interesting, like, way to do it. Like, here’s a teaser, you can get an idea of how good our content is. And like, that’s an interesting way to go about it, I still not gonna pay for it. But it’s like an interesting way to go about it. But that’s my thing is like, you can Google something else and get to the same result without having to jump through these people’s hoops. So I think that that’s a big thing is if I just build trust with somebody, and like a whole company, I’m gonna go to their site, rather than someone else’s that’s constantly pitching to me that’s constantly making me give them more information. It’s like, you should already be okay with having like this community of people. And once you have that, I think then you can say like, Hey, join my newsletter, because they already like established, I know what I’m talking about you like me engage, like, let’s go, let’s take this elsewhere. But I think that you can’t do any of that until you have that because you’re just no one knows you. No one cares. So I think that like, yeah, no one cares until they care. So I think that like building that community is so crucial. Yeah.
Alex Meade 7:45
Okay, let’s change. Let’s change bases a little bit. Still with zero. So we’ve talked about it on like the, the kind of social side, there’s also like this, thanks to Google, with their with their, like surprising gains, and what their Featured Snippets, like zero click is also now strategy with search and SEO. Because if you search, anything you want, you’ll probably get the answer without having to click on a website. What can we do? Like how should companies be approaching content? As it relates to how can they get into some of these rankings? You know, how do they get this information that people actually are asking to become like that same trusted source?
Stori Pemberton 8:30
Well, I think it, we say this a lot, but I think it goes into high quality content. So doing your keyword research, and making sure that your content has the opportunity to rank. So if you are writing on some of the big topics that say HubSpot covers, there’s a chance that you’re not going to rank for that. But if you’re writing on more of the topics that people are looking for, that aren’t talked about as much, you have a higher chance of being in those search engines. And like, we have a couple that like we’re proud of, you know, so it’s like certain ones that were like on inbound that you that we’ve written on, like on inbound. And it’s like, you want to just start to become someone that knows, like someone that they go to, and they want to see you and be like beacons point, like, that’s great, and all that kind of stuff. So I think that the biggest one would just be like, like you said, keyword research, just you still have to be SEO minded as like a marketer. And they call that like unicorn marketers, like, you’re all the things but it’s like, you have to be SEO minded. Like whenever you’re creating any kind of content, whether it’s a podcast, like titling your podcasts properly, all that kind of stuff, like plays a role in where you’re gonna land. And so it’s not style, they always say like, it depends. I don’t think that that’s necessary. Yeah, like, I don’t think that’s necessarily correct. If you’re doing your research, you know, yeah, you can get lucky but yeah, I think that aiming for those dropdowns without any click and like getting the definition there is like a meta description for like your blog is a is a goal. So yeah,
Alex Meade 9:58
yeah, it seems like there’s a lot that’s Knock about here. Maybe maybe we’ll make another podcast. Maybe we’ll make another blog? I don’t know. I don’t know. We’ll see.
Stori Pemberton 10:07
Maybe we’ll test it out enough to get our own data on it.
Alex Meade 10:11
Yeah, definitely. Okay, now we have a new second store, we have a new segment. It’s called the marketing minute. We’re gonna do rapid fire questions to each other. I’m gonna time you 30 seconds for answers. You have to tie me. And so this is kind of rapid fire, current events, things that are going on in marketing questions, terms, anything that we can think of, we’re going to ask each other, we’re gonna do this, what three to five questions? Okay, I’ll let you go first.
Stori Pemberton 10:43
Okay, so one of my first ones would be, do you do b2b Companies need a video marketing strategy?
Alex Meade 10:53
You given me that on the first one for 30? seconds? Sorry. Short answer is like, Yes, I think there’s always situations where, like, industries may not need as many videos as others, but the data is clear video usage and like watch minutes is going up. Of course, that includes YouTube, and all of the like, deep world of YouTube that exists. But more and more companies and more and more brands and executives want to watch something quickly versus read an entire page. And so if you can quickly get your features out, or you can explain a complex process in a video, that’s a more, you know, digestible piece of content that’s gonna get across, and it’s gonna be more shareable. So yes.
Stori Pemberton 11:36
Good. Okay. Done. Perfect.
Alex Meade 11:39
Okay, here we go. Here’s my first question. Okay. So content, we’re going to talk about content marketing. That’s the topic, the topic. The question is, if you’re creating content, and you’re sitting there thinking about how do I write content? Should you think about, you know, should you first figure out what your keywords are? And just write based on keywords? Or should you figure out like, what is the need of your customer? What do they want to hear about? And then figure out keywords later? What’s your what? Which method?
Stori Pemberton 12:11
Okay, I think your customers, I think that like, your customers are always going to drive your sales, they’re going to drive your marketing, I think that like, listen to your customers, be a sounding board for them, see what like their pain points are and like, where they’re at. And of course, keywords are gonna play a role into it. So don’t discount that. But I think that 100% Go with your customers, like, see what they want answer their questions, and like, be there for them. Yeah, awesome. And always create an outline. Yeah.
Alex Meade 12:41
I thought I thought we would have a hard time staying under 30 seconds. We’re doing all right, we’re doing right. Okay. Here’s maybe an easy one. But I think this term gets thrown a lot thrown around a lot. And not everybody, maybe different definitions. Or maybe people just assume they know what it is. What is the buyers journey?
Stori Pemberton 13:02
Simple in shorts, like has like the process a customer goes through, like, whenever they’re going to purchase something. So it’s the awareness consideration, decision phase, you know, it’s just simple as that, like, you figure out like, whether they are qualified MQL like or like MQL, or an SQL, like where they’re at in the process. And usually, they’re going to come to you in an awareness stage. And it’s your purpose to as a marketer to nurture those leads, and then nurture them to become in the decision phase. So I think, yeah, like awareness, consideration decision. That’s kind of the Yeah, the very small theory
Alex Meade 13:39
gets bigger. Yeah, perfect. Perfect. Yeah. All right. You’re trying to ask away All right,
Stori Pemberton 13:45
so All right, following back up on video, is this small, but do you think that b2b has any chance that it could be successful in TikTok? Like on TikTok?
Alex Meade 13:55
Yes. I am not. I am not a master of TikTok but there are marketers I think it’s I don’t know if it’s coming from like a brand as much as it is like a marketer or like a, like a b2b employee, you know, because if you’re, if you’re in manufacturing and you are selling to like a specific audience, like creating cool tic TOCs and being creative, on like what you’re doing, it can be super impactful and people are doing it. People are doing it really well. I am not going to be that person that’s probably going to help you get famous on tick tock that’s more your job but yes, I think tick tock is just another channel just meaning you got to figure out what if your audience is there and if it’s good if it’s gonna be good play
Stori Pemberton 14:39
now and ask you because I know you don’t like you’ll see tick box and stuff but you don’t think about it like what can I do for tick tock? So I want to see like if you think maybe he’s even doable?
Alex Meade 14:48
I don’t, don’t just do something stupid. You gotta do something like, you gotta like, follow the Tiktok rules and do and have fun with it, while also providing value. Certainly there
Stori Pemberton 14:59
Alex Meade 15:02
Okay, my last question for you. This is about streaming advertising. So like Hulu, Netflix announced they’re gonna start doing ads. Is this a good place for b2b? Should should b2b companies be thinking about targeting baking shows or history documentaries? What should they? Is this something they should think about?
Stori Pemberton 15:28
Getting answers quickly this is a loaded question, but I think yes short short answer yes. Because I’m gonna fan girl over HubSpot per usual and they have that great ad where Catherine Hans a pirate and that is streamed in quite a few places like who knows what HubSpot is like you don’t even like she goes into it and discusses that like she’s a likable character. I think that like that takes such a niche set like companies such as HubSpot, and turns it into like something more tangible for the consumer and so they’ll be able to see like hey, that’s something interesting maybe I haven’t thought about using that before and you have to find your right spot just like in the Golf Channel they’re gonna feature tailor made golf clubs you know what I mean? Like there it’s the same kind of thing like you have to find the right channel or the right episode or something to like, feature your commercial on but either way Yeah, I think it it can be doable for sure. Follow up
Alex Meade 16:22
spot favorite favorite role is in Parks and Rec and when Leslie Knope has kids and she’s like your life is that is completely disgusting to me. But I agree was that did you have one more question for me it was that it one more? It’s a hot topic. Oh boy.
Stori Pemberton 16:44
So the Oxford I’ve seen some guys on LinkedIn recently and Twitter. We’ve all had our debates on it. Well, how do you feel about it?
Alex Meade 16:57
So I so when I was growing up, it was Hooked on Phonics like that’s what we were like taught Yeah, and I was never good at it. So thank you. Thank you Grammarly for creating a product that helps me with basic grammar and I follow I am I am a yes Oxford comma. And not just because of Grammarly, but I think when it’s not there, it just doesn’t feel right. To me. Doesn’t feel like this doesn’t feel like the sentence follows like a structure of how I would say it. And so yeah, I went yeah, I’m pro Oxford comma.
Stori Pemberton 17:32
Okay. Or pro extra calm around here. Yeah,
Alex Meade 17:35
I do. I do know some anti Oxford comma. Maybe we need to get them out here. Yes. Have a full on debates. like
Stori Pemberton 17:41
it’d be fun to get an opposing Yeah.
Alex Meade 17:44
That is the podcast. We wanted to keep it short and sweet. Give a little educational. kind of learned some new things on the marketing minutes, and maybe find some new shows or books to read. So hope you enjoyed it. Story. Thank you for carving time out of your day to record another addition. Story is the magic behind the podcast. She does all the marketing, all the promotion, all the organization. So I like that you get to be in front of the microphone. Everyone’s swell. Yeah, so clearly, marketing your fine personal book favorites.
Stori Pemberton 18:23
You know, it’s my own fault. So yeah.
Alex Meade 18:30
All right. Well, thanks, everybody. We’ll have another q&a episode in a couple of weeks mixed in with our we’ve got some great interviews coming up as well. So stay tuned and subscribe. Talk to you later.