Four Ways to Write Stronger Content for Your Audience


No matter your industry, you’re bound to have tough competition. In many cases, content will make the difference and determine whether you get the conversion or not. If you find that you have been on the losing side of late, you may want to reexamine your content and see if there is room for improvement. By strengthening your content in your digital marketing campaign, you should see more engagement and potentially conversions too.


Here are a few tips to help you get started, but please feel free to implement your own strategies too. You know your customers and what they’re looking for better than Jeff Kamikow or any other marketer, but this guide can provide some principles that will work for any industry or audience.


It’s all about the Headline: There is so much content out there. A viewer will make the decision to click on your article or not in a nanosecond, so you’ll need to create a title that will generate some interest. Lists are good. Provocative can be good as well. However, keep in mind that you still need to deliver. We’ve all heard of clickbait. If your article doesn’t deliver on what was promised in the headline, your viewer will probably be turned off and stay away in the future.


Be Conversational: You’re allowed to speak to your readers like they were in the same room with you. Know your medium. You are not writing a grad term paper. Slang and jargon may be alright depending on the purpose of the blog. Just remember that you shouldn’t get too comfortable where you’re making spelling or grammar mistakes. Those things still matter.


Use Images and/or Video: A multimodal presentation that incorporates text, images, infographics, videos, and other media can really capture your audience’s attention. It can also help to break up the content, which is important as readers tend to scan when they read blog posts.


Create a Narrative: A marketer like Jeff Kamikow would probably tell you that people like stories. Facts and figures do matter, but if you can tell a story and a put a human element into your writing, it can really take your writing to the next level. For example, if you want to highlight a particular product or service, it might be a good idea to talk about a recent customer success story. The goal is to put the viewer in their shoes so he or she becomes interested in your product or service too.



Hack These 3 Ecommerce Trends in 2016

Jeffrey Kamikow has noticed the distinctions between ecommerce and “regular” commerce are falling fast, if they ever really existed at all. No matter what your business does, who it sells to, or how it’s built to make money, it needs a cohesive ecommerce (or at least e-conversion) strategy.

What this looks like on the ground, of course, is up to you. No one can hold your hand and tell you that this is how you turn your online dross into ecommerce gold.

What experienced marketing professionals like Jeff Kamikow can tell you is how to capitalize on late-breaking ecommerce trends — how to ride the wave that everyone knows is cresting, but few are exactly sure how to catch without wiping out.

These three ecommerce trends are all set to build or crest in 2016. Which are you most looking forward to capitalizing on?

  1. Multichannel Is the Way to Go

Ventureburn has an in-depth look at the emerging power of multichannel marketing and sales. If you have time, definitely read the whole thing. Here’s the short version: Since your customers access your ecommerce platform on a variety of devices, you need to tailor your marketing campaigns to capture them all.

Use mobile ad networks to turbocharge conversion rates and reach customers opportunistically, retargeting systems to catch prospects on the conversion bubble, traditional PPC and search campaigns to draw in desktop-bound users, video and email to build awareness and loyalty, and non-digital word of mouth campaigns (brand ambassadors, anyone?) to develop legitimacy.

  1. Content Marketing Works Pretty Much Everywhere

Think no one reads your product descriptions, ad copy or “about us” blurb? Think again. Content is the once and future king of ecommerce, naysayers be darned. What’s different for 2016 and beyond? In a word, quality. We’ve been hearing the drumbeat about quality content for years, but it’s (unfortunately) been possible to skate by with subpar, corner-cutting content until relatively recently. That’s certainly not going to be the case in 2016, and likely won’t be for the foreseeable future. Make sure your ecommerce portal’s content engine is well-oiled and primed to purr. From your product descriptions and reviews to parent-page content, blog and sales collateral, everything you produce needs to be on-message, authentic and structured to sell.

  1. Responsive, Ready or All In? Either Way, It’s Mobile Now & Mobile Forever

Mobile ad networks aren’t the only mobile-centric ecommerce trend set to shake up the digital landscape in 2016 and beyond. Thanks to recent algorithm changes by Google and other search engines, ecommerce sites that don’t have mobile-friendly architectures and designs risk drastic hits to search visibility and performance.

If you haven’t already, get on the stick and invest in a mobile-friendly overhaul that touches every aspect of your ecommerce operation — including ancillary pieces like confirmation emails and tracking tools. An ounce of prevention really is worth a pound of cure here.

Which ecommerce trend are you most looking forward to in 2016? Which are you most skeptical about?

Here’s What You Need to Know About Mobile Ad Networks

Sometime in 2014, mobile’s total share of U.S. Internet traffic surpassed that of traditional access points — desktops, laptops, mainframes (just kidding) — for the first time.

It’s unlikely to ever lose its lead. At least, not until the Singularity happens.

But mobile’s rapid rise and newfound dominance present tremendous challenges for marketers who, quite frankly, have grown complacent with old-school digital outreach techniques. Like the original shift to digital, the mobile revolution caught many brands flat-footed. Independent marketers — the workhorses who grease the wheels of digital commerce and often earn tidy (if hard-won) sums in the process — were no less put out.

Seems like few knew what to do about what some are calling Web 3.0. Many still don’t.

One particular aspect of mobile marketing offers some promise for change-weary marketers. Digital advertising pioneers like Jeff Kamikow have been crowing about mobile ad networks for years, and folks are finally starting to take them seriously. If you rely on mobile marketing to drive revenues or simply wish to get more involved with a rapidly growing, increasingly lucrative slice of the ad space, here’s what you need to know about mobile ad networks.

  1. Mobile Ad Targeting Now Surpasses Desktop Targeting

Mobile ad growth has lagged mobile use for some time, mostly because many blue-chip brands (and some marketers) have been skeptical about its potential. That corner has finally been turned. According to a study by eXelate, advertisers now target mobile users at nearly the same rates as desktop users, and that percentage continues to rise. Moreover, mobile ad spend passed desktop and other traditional digital channels to claim a majority share of total digital ad spend for the first time ever in 2014.

  1. Mobile Ad Targeting Teaches Marketers About Their Prospects

Marketing can sometimes feel like a chicken-and-egg game: The best way to gather data and insight about customers and prospects is to analyze their purchase histories, but it’s hard to convince people to buy when you don’t really know what they want.

Thanks to low (at least for now) CPC rates and plenty of available mobile real estate, mobile ad targeting is a relatively cost-effective way to segment audiences by trial and error. The longer you run your mobile ad network campaigns, the more actionable data you’ll gather, the better you’ll target hyper-specific consumer groups, and the higher you’ll push your ROI.

  1. Mobile Networks Support Opportunistic Ad Service

“Omnichannel” — basically, the merging of online and brick-and-mortar — is all the rage in B2C circles these days.

Buyers have been “showrooming” in person and buying online for years, challenging the traditional retail model. Thanks to mobile ad targeting, retailers and brick-and-mortar service providers (restaurants, in particular) are going on the offensive.

Using GPS (longer-range) or RF (in-store) mobile beacons that sense when a prospect is nearby, merchants can laser-target high-value prospects with relevant, opportunistic ads that dovetail with previous purchase records or browsing histories. Say a customer purchases clothing from a retailer’s e-store, then walks past that retailer’s physical storefront a week or two later, smartphone in hand. The retailer serves a “Like your new purchase? Check out this deal at our XXX Retail Lane store!” ad, the customer turns around and walks into the store, and everyone wins.

Are you excited about the promise of mobile ad networks, or are you still waiting to be convinced?

Ready to Meet the World? Follow Jeff Kamikow’s Top 5 Brand Marketing Tips

Brand positioning isn’t for the faint of heart. There’s quite a bit that can go wrong between “This is who we are as a brand, now let’s turn it into an unforgettable ad spot” and “Mom, why isn’t Dad going to work anymore?”

Marketing expert Jeff Kamikow cut his chops in the rough-and-tumble print advertising space and made the transition to digital before “online marketing” was a thing — certainly long before anything to do with the Internet was profitable for anyone but the phone company and, okay, probably old-school modem manufacturers too. In fact, one of Jeff’s favorite stories harkens back to his days in print, when he’d literally give away online banner ad space to companies that bought extra ad spots in his magazines.

“I’d say, ‘Buy a couple extra spots in the next issue and we’ll give you this thing called the Internet for free,’” he recalls.

These days, Kamikow is brand marketing expert in a mobile-first world. During a decade-long career in the digital advertising and lead gen space, he has architected more brand turnarounds than his superiors can count — including some that no one thought he could pull off.

Problem is, changing technologies and ever-evolving consumer tastes mean that the online branding goalposts are forever shifting. At the same time, putting forward a first-rate brand is increasingly table stakes for companies looking to compete in any market, period. As anyone who’s had to perform in the clutch knows, the combination of complexity, high stakes and unfamiliar players can lead to tremendous — sometimes spectacular and job-ending, too — failures of execution. Forbes has a great look at some of the brand strategies that CMOs and other key decision-makers fail to execute.

Knowing what to avoid is a great start. If you’re keen on learning critical brand marketing strategies to try, check out Jeff Kamikow’s top tips and see which fit your organization best.

  1. Make Your Brand Aspirational

Everyone loves a good story, particularly when that story offers hope that the future will be better than the past.

That’s the essence of aspirational marketing, an increasingly common hallmark of well-executed corporate branding campaigns. Think back to the last Coke or McDonald’s commercial you saw: Unless you’re a certified cynic, the message likely resonated —  even if the product didn’t.

When Jeff Kamikow worked at digital trade publications back in the 1990s, he was most definitely in the aspirational marketing business. After all, the promise of the PC revolution — a powerful machine, and later a bona fide connection to the rest of the world, in every home — was the quintessential aspirational message. These days, he’s built aspirational campaigns for successive clients in a wide variety of industries, all of which have positive stories to tell.

  1. Emphasize Your Human Side, No Matter What You Do

It’s a bit cliche to say that you should treat your brand as you’d treat a fellow human being, but that’s actually not a bad way to approach things at the outset.

When Jeff Kamikow helped Time Inc develop its first sustainable revenue strategy, he focused on connecting with readers on a personal level — demonstrating that his employer wasn’t just a faceless, profit-driven publisher, but a thoughtful member of the business community.

Kamikow’s gamble paid off big time: By the time he exited, he’d left Time with a multimillion-dollar revenue machine at the properties he’d managed.

  1. Make Sure It’s Cashflow-Positive

Speaking of revenue: It’s not a good idea to build a brand around a revenue strategy, but it’s also not a good idea to focus on aesthetics and other non-financial considerations to the detriment of revenue.

Once you have the bones of your refreshed brand in place, every step of the process — and every branded component or property that you deploy — should have a clear path to lead generation, conversion and revenue. Ask the question every time. Remember, the perception problems that necessitate brand refreshes are very often financial in nature — or so closely bound up with revenue as to be indistinguishable from true financial issues.

  1. Play Up Your Philanthropic Activities

Let’s clear the air: It’s not cynical or disingenuous to claim that you’re an upstanding member of the community if you really are.

Investing a few hours per month or a small percentage of your net income in charitable activities, such as volunteering at shelters or clean-up sites, or donating funds to reputable local and national nonprofits, is a great way to reinforce your company’s fundamental decency without breaking the bank. A decent brand is a strong brand. Sometimes, doing the right thing for others is also the right thing to do for yourself.

  1. Make Sure You Can Deploy and Respond in a Hurry

Jeff Kamikow recommends investing in a brand refresh every year or two, regardless of whether you feel like your brand “needs” it. By the time you recognize a pressing need to change, after all, you’re liable to have already threatened your brand’s integrity.

On the other hand: During the course of your campaign, you’re sure to encounter lots of situations in which a rapid, responsive turn is imperative. These situations take numerous forms, some more dangerous than others.

A benign example: A breaking news story perfectly dovetails with your solution or value proposition, so you spring into action to create and deploy complementary website, blog or social content. Brands with in-house marketing departments or on-call externals can turn such content around — conception to publishing — in a couple hours flat, and perhaps even sooner for raw pieces (like an off-the-cuff webcam video or unedited blog post).

A malign example: A serious employee gaffe (possibly the person in charge of your social media accounts) demands immediate damage control. Apologies are one thing; branded content that helps suppress and ultimately erase the online (and, to an extent, offline) record of the damage is another. If you’re set up to produce slick spots on timelines that stretch to days or weeks, you’re simply not equipped to handle the digital cycle.

What’s your favorite brand marketing strategy?