We’ve engaged in creating compelling content to engage customers and prospective customers for more than two decades. For us, content marketing (we’re not fans of the phrase, but the industry calls it that) has always been about contextual commerce – bringing people in with relevant content onsite and through social channels with the focus on revenue.
Our team has developed, designed and created the strategies for sites geared toward a wide variety of interests, including fashion, boating and fishing, comic books, sci-fi and pop-culture collectibles, music, sewing and quilting, scrapbooking, home improvement, RVing/camping, small business interests and other niche markets.
Our work in this space began in 1995, at American Entertainment, which was then a leading direct marketing retailer in the comic book and pop-culture collectible space. We developed an online platform which became the company’s highest grossing and highest growth channel. Our work – far ahead of the game at the time for content and e-commerce – caught the attention of Marvel, The Sci-Fi Channel and others who private labeled our technology and resources for their own e-commerce presence. The company renamed itself anotheruniverse.com based on the success of our online efforts.
By 2000, we had perfected our model, which we brought to Raytheon. Raytheon Marine was the first business under the Raytheon umbrella to engage us, and we created the strategy, design, and development for Boaters.com. Through the site, we connected Raytheon Marine with people who valued a certain lifestyle by posting relevant content, sharing information about social activities and contests and directing consumers to the company’s retail network. Our work for Raytheon Marine created an entirely new sales and marketing channel, opened new revenue streams, and added over $55 million dollars to the company’s valuation, one year after launch.
In 2005, members of our team joined with best-selling author and speaker Seth Godin to create Squidoo.com – one of the first user-generated content sites on the web – at the dawn of what is referred to as “Web 2.0”. By 2012, Squidoo was ranked #35 on the web for traffic in the U.S. (with a worldwide monthly reach of 82 million visits). Squidoo’s social/user generated content platform was built with contextual commerce in mind, which yielded highly successful partnerships with Amazon, eBay, Google, Facebook, and others. Squidoo was acquired in 2014.
Four years later, in 2009, we launched No Treble, an online magazine for bass players and bass enthusiasts. At the time, the leading publication (print) was Bass Player Magazine – the industry standard for over a quarter of a century. Due to changes in the print magazine landscape, Bass Player saw readership decline by 2009. Our team saw an opportunity for No Treble to become the leading bass-focused publication in the world (via an online-only presence) and launched the site in May of that year. We developed a feature we refer to as “Subscriber 2.0” to reach and grow a global audience. Because many people suffer from “email fatigue”, we equally promoted various forms of “subscribing” to No Treble’s daily news feed via Facebook, Twitter, MySpace (at the time), email and RSS. We developed new technology to automatically “push” their news, as it is published, to the various social platforms (and email). No Treble has grown to become the gold standard in the bass playing world, and its numbers exceed all competitors, combined.
In 2014, Chico’s FAS recruited our team for a variety of services, including helping them launch blogs for two of their brands. We collaborated with their social, design, and marketing teams to develop the blogs and content strategy to attract new and existing customers through content which resonates with their interests.
Our Content Marketing process delivers a clear blueprint, focused on these important areas:
- Explore content distribution channel opportunities, including search, social, email
- Review existing content assets
- Review website analytics
- Conduct competitive landscape review and analysis
- Build effective storytelling around the brand, customer interests and lifestyle
- Provide guidance and direction on sophisticated visuals and multi-media content
- Establish best practices for SEO
- Develop a rich social media integration with onsite content and publishing
- Establish an editorial calendar
- Build a taxonomy for the relationship between content and commerce/revenue generation