Content Marketing Advice with Colin Campbell of Sales Hacker

by ComparisonX Editorial Feb 22, 2019

This week Colin Campbell of Sales Hacker shares valuable insights into content marketing and advice for businesses looking to excel in this area.

Can you describe Sales Hacker and your role at the organization?

Colin Campbell

Colin Campbell of Sales Hacker

Sales Hacker is a leading community for sales professionals. Simply put, we gather the best minds in sales and help them share insights that elevate sales teams and sales professionals all over the world.

My role is to ensure we’re always growing – always finding new salespeople to help, and solving problems for them.

Can you tell us a little about experience prior to joining Sales Hacker, how did you get into content marketing?

I started in content marketing while running sales, marketing, customer service, and retention (as a team of one) for my parents’ small business in 2011. They had a small retail electricity supply company that focused on homeowners and small businesses in Massachusetts.

I quickly got to the point where I could no longer grow faster. I can only enroll so many customers myself by phone! So hired a developer to rebuild our website, include an online enrollment, and set about trying to get some traffic to the site. Content marketing worked! I then spent some time at a content marketing agency called Brafton, and ended up leading the account service and strategy team.

There are hundreds of content marketing and SEO tools on the market. How do you decide which tools to trial and use?

All the available tools are very nearly commoditized in my opinion. We’re a scrappy, small team, and we try not to deal too much with edge cases. We’d rather do the fundamentals really, really well.

So, I don’t spend much time researching new tools. I know which ones I need to make our content the best on the web for salespeople, and I’m sticking with those for the most part.

When I do look at or trial new tools, it’s because I think they can massively reduce manual work we’re already doing without a decrease in quality, and at favorable cost.

What content marketing software do you use, and why?

Our stack is: WordPress, Yoast, SEMrush, Moz, AHrefs, BuzzSumo, Sumo, Instapage, Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Asana.

Content marketing and SEO best practice have changed dramatically in recent years. What industry resources or people do you follow to keep up to date?

I’m not actually sure best practices have ever changed in content marketing. I think people gravitate to good stories told well. Even if you look at some of the old magazine ads from David Ogilvy, they were really content marketing. He’d write a “how-to” article that gave good housekeeping tips and put a laundry detergent logo on it. Or he’d tell an interesting story about a fascinating character that used a specific product. So good information and good stories have been and will always be the only best practice.

Certainly, public perception of what’s best has changed, though. I think we all get a little too excited about new technologies like web search, social media, email, forms, chat bots, etc. At the core, there are some things that make people tick, and there are some things that just make them ticked off. Those are still the same.

I try not to spend too much time following others, because I think most of the important and correct things have been said. But I do appreciate content from Rand Fishkin, Jeff Baker, Paul Shapiro, Kieran Flanagan, Brian Balfour, Dana DiTomaso and Kevin Indig.

Some of the major marketing stack companies like Adobe and Oracle have acquired niche content marketing tools and folded them into their tech stacks. What are your views on this? Should businesses align with one stack of technology or are they better choosing specialist tools?

Businesses I’ve been a part of whether as an employee or in a consulting capacity (small, high-growth, and mid-size companies) should choose the tools they need to do the job. I imagine it would make sense for an enterprise managing multiple brands, or large web properties to align with a stack.

SEO is often cited as the most challenging area for marketers. Often there is conflicting advice online as to what works. What tips would you have for someone wanting to rank highly in Google?

Know the subject matter. Love the subject matter. There is absolutely no substitute for passion and knowledge, because creating impactful content is still the best thing one can do for SEO.

What tips would you have for someone starting out in content marketing?

You’re better off trying things and learning for yourself than trying to learn by observing others. Also, a tight focus on fewer pieces of content can be a competitive advantage.

 

Colin Campbell is Director of Marketing at Sales Hacker

Connect with Colin on Linked-In

ComparisonX Editorial

ComparisonX articles are written by a panel of independent experts. If you would like to join an expert panel or submit an article for consideration, drop us a line at hello@comparisonx.com. We welcome users with a range of experience. Key for our readers is having people who actually use the products we are reviewing on a daily basis.

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