AMG Newsletter: Want To Make Your Business Improve? Set Your Content Marketing Free

Published: Tue, 09/21/21

Dear ,

Hi from a refreshingly cool New York City where Fall is in the air.

Last week, the marketing conference season kicked into high gear!

Heidi Cohen at MAICON 2019I appreciate that conference marketers are assessing whether their participants are ready to meet again in-person.

Paul Roetzer and Cathy McPhillips had a star-studded line up for MAICON. This conference provides marketers with an understanding of how to integrate AI into your marketing mix. (BTW—I was at the inaugural MAICON IRL in Cleveland in July 2019.)

I loved Mathew Sweezey’s keynote on his bestselling book, The Context Marketing Revolution. When you add voice to your marketing mix, context becomes a critical path consideration since voice provides more information about where, what device and when a prospect contacts you.

On Friday, I presented “Marketing Inside & Outside The Book: How To Improve Your Results!” at Digital Book World Global. This virtual conference included speakers involved in expanding audio books to voice and other devices.

Why am I discussing events with you as a marketer?
Because, as I mentioned last week, conferences and events provide a great way to tap into other people’s audiences.

Additionally, they offer great venues to see what’s happening in your category and who the up and coming thought leaders and vendors are.


Actionable Marketing Lesson of The Week

Last week, I attended religious services via Zoom. Starting during the lockdown and continuing to the present, my religious community broadcast Zoom sessions of their services, educational offerings and social events. So they reached people across the US and around the world.

What surprised me and matters to marketers is:
These Zoom meetings attracted tens of thousands of viewers in total beyond the local membership.

Further, these long distance viewers developed a strong bond with the community. As a result, they collectively donated hundreds of thousands of dollars.

So, what actions would your broader audience take after consuming your content if it was ungated?

Then ask your management team:
What level of results do they need to let you set your content free to reach a larger audience?

And it’s not just my religious organization!

Ahava Leibtag of Aha Media ungated her content during COVID. She started by testing a COVID-related cheat sheet before extending the practice to the entire website.

What did Leibtag learn?

  • Newsletter sign-ups increased 14%;
  • Publication downloads increased 100+% in 6 months; and
  • Website traffic grew 48% year-over-year.

With results like these, isn’t it worth testing ungating your content marketing?

Actionable Marketing Tips:

  • Use chatbots or connected content to engage visitors. Help them to act after reading ungated content.
  • Start by testing an attractive piece of content.

Voice Notes

Audiobook Publishing US Market Size Are audiobooks part of your content marketing mix?

If not, consider adding them.


Because the audiobook market in the US is projected to be $1.1 billion in 2021. And, this market segment grew 10.6% on an annualized basis between 2016 and 2021. (Source: Ibis, April 2021.)

If you create, publish and distribute audiobooks to support your content marketing, you may not care about market revenues. BUT these sales indicate how this market continues to grow.

More importantly to get your content marketing noticed and consumed, audiobooks are a less crowded option. Even better, your audience listens to audiobooks when they don’t want to look at a screen or read a book. 

In addition, publishing your audiobooks on Audible (owned by Amazon) or voice-first options (such as Alexa, Google Assistant or the Apple Store) extends your content marketing distribution.

The main drawback of audiobooks for a content marketer is cost. To create a great user experience (or UX) requires investing in voice talent or actors. The good news: synthetic (or AI-driven) voice options are starting to be good quality and available at significantly lower costs.

Actionable Marketing Tip:

  • Test adding audiobooks to your content marketing mix. Start by having internal experts read them. This adds to your branding since you use your employees' voices.

 Interested in Learning More About Voice Marketing?

Then join me on Friday, September 24th at 12pm EDT/9am PDT for Voice Lunch Marketing. This week we’re discussing “How Voice Works”.

Voice Lunch Marketing meets every other Friday at 12pm EDT/ 9am EDT. Get your FREE invite and reminders HERE!


Social Scene

 How Do You Build Your Community?

Everyday, I get LinkedIn requests from people. Most arrive in my inbox without any message. Since I don’t know how they found me or why they want to connect with me, I ignore their messages.

What do I recommend that you do instead?
Reach out to influencers when they’re paying attention. 
And, more importantly, the initial interaction doesn’t have to take place on social media.

How do you do this to get better results?
Actively participate in virtual conferences and other events you attend.
This translates to contributing to the chat and asking relevant questions.

This establishes a “warm” introduction to the speakers and other attendees at the event. So you can reach out to them on a different platform and get a better response.

For example, at Digital Book World Global, a virtual event, I engaged in the chat and reached out to a number of speakers and others during the event. When I moved the conversation to LinkedIn, I sent a message referencing their presentation. In each case, they connected, often with a note.

During the pandemic, I used this process to connect with people around the world.

Actionable Marketing Tip:

  • Make networking part of your event attendance, both in-person and virtually.

NYC Marketing Marketing Minute

 Make Your Business Contextually Relevant

Last week, my husband and I bought bagels from Brooklyn Bagel and Coffee Company on Eighth Avenue and West 24th Street. On the weekends, there’s always a line out the door waiting to get this New York speciality. In New York City, a line is the best sign that a business or restaurant is good. New Yorkers often get on line first and ask why second!

Blooklyn Bagel's Unusual Bagel SpecialitiesUnlike the bagels of my childhood, these bagels are monster size and come in an assortment of unorthodox flavors such as pumpkin for the Fall. During the Spring, they had “Rainbow” and “Oreo Cake Batter” bagels, two bagel flavors I had never seen before!

By itself, the way Brooklyn Bagels adapts and tailors its core product offering to win the hearts and taste buds of their local fans is marketing worthy.

But having just read Dan Gingiss’s The Experience Maker, I was inspired by the signs inside of Brooklyn Bagel. Their “Signature Sandwiches” referenced major streets in New York City.

Brooklyn Bagel Signature Sandwhiches

In addition, they had a painting of the various reviews by local media.

Brooklyn Bagel Collage

Actionable Marketing Tip:

  • Make your business stand out for your customers by delighting and surprising them!

Marketing Reads

 Book Stand

I just finished reading John Jantsch’s The Ultimate Marketing Machine and I agree with him!

Grounded in marketing theory, Jantsch adds important nuances to long accepted ideas such as the customer journey. For example, he focuses on “Customer Success” so your business succeeds when your customers do!

 New Posts on the Actionable Marketing Guide

How Book Marketing Can Actually Improve Your Content Marketing ResultsHow Book Marketing Can Actually Improve Your Content Marketing Results

This in-depth article focuses on how to add books to your content marketing mix. It was inspired by my Digital Book World Global Presentation (Hat Tip: Bradley Metrock.)

What does this mean for you marketing?

With the expanded consumption of voice and audio content, there’s a good chance a portion of your audience listens to content when they can’t read it.

So expand your content marketing by reading this article packed with case studies and tips from top marketers like David Meerman Scott, Mark Schaefer, John Lee Dumas, Andy Crestodina, Joe Pulizzi, Gini Dietrich, Paul Roetzer and Dan Gingiss.


5 Pricing Challenges: What you need to know to improve outcomes5 Pricing Challenges: What You Need To Know To Improve Outcomes

Let’s face reality:
Pricing is one of the hardest marketing strategies to develop and implement.

And, it’s gotten more difficult in today’s always connected world. Since your customers can access your competitors and near substitutes on any device (including voice-first), anywhere, any time and in any context.

To help you, we examine 5 Pricing Challenges with examples and tips to increase profitable sales.

Plan Ahead: Mark Your Calendar

Join me at these marketing events:

 September 24 - Voice Lunch Marketing, 12pm ET / 9am PT.  Sign up to get your Zoom invitation and reminders. This week’s topic is “How Voice Marketing Works”. It will include a brief presentation followed by an open and unrecorded discussion. So please join us!

 September 28th to October 1st.​​​​​​ – Content Marketing World Kicks off in-person and virtually in Cleveland, Ohio. I’m sorry to miss this conference fav of mine but I’m staying home this year.

 September 29th – The Voice Den with Dr. Teri Fisher, 8pm EDT/5pm PDT. This is the online “Happy Hour of Voice” so please join the party. I’ll be there.

Welcome New SubscribersWelcome new members: Heidi, Amber, Ingrid, Jon, Kabya, David, Andrew, Sumit, Anne, Claude, Ram, Bukky, Martin, Kim, Juliet, Uju, Ani, Arayya, Aniekan, Emily, Andreea, Lisa, Metabeal, and Sdaasd.

Happy Marketing,

P.S.: If you like the content in this newsletter, would you please share it with a friend or colleague.

P.P.S: Did you miss last week's AMG Newsletter?
Previous newsletters can be found in the AMG Newsletter Archive.


The fine print
  • Unless noted otherwise, all photos are ©2021 by Heidi Cohen
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