We sat down with Matt Osborn, senior marketing manager at Apruve, a B2B credit management software service headquartered in Minneapolis. This bustling startup has been using ClearVoice content marketing software to find freelance writers and create and manage their blog content since October 2016. We wanted to know: How’s that working out for you? So we asked. Here’s what Matt said.
What content marketing challenges were you facing that brought you to ClearVoice?
We have three people on our in-house marketing team, and we didn’t always have the time — or in some instances, the expertise — to consistently write content. This lead to a smaller SEO rank and decreased lead generation. We knew if we wanted to compete digitally, we would have to ask for help.
Tell us about your content strategy and process.
At Apruve, we have over 10 distinct buyer personas. To attract qualified leads that match these personas, we need to create content that boosts our SEO around their pain points and needs, while establishing ourselves as a thought leader in their industry and department. Our content creation takes into consideration all of our personas to continually stay top of mind and top of search. We continually alternate our keywords, industry and departments to make sure we always have recent content. Once we have selected a target persona, we look for relevant topics. We do this by looking at competitors, looking at recent news, searching common industry keywords, and using ClearVoice Content Studio. The concept is then handed off to a writer of our choice.
You formed a team of freelancers using the ClearVoice talent network, right?
We did — we established a great team of freelance writers, actually, each with their own specialty. After months of working with our freelance team, each writer knows exactly what our brand voice and expectations are, leading to quicker turnarounds and fewer revisions.
ClearVoice has not only allowed us to better manage our content creation process, but it’s also supplied us with qualified writers who can produce inspiring and shareable content — in less time and effort than we thought possible, too.
We are sooo glad to hear that. What are the most valuable features and/or components of ClearVoice?
I’d rank them like this:
- The workflow tools — revisions, messaging, teams, auto-publishing, etc.
- Organization and editorial tools such as campaigns, personas and tone of voice
- The freelancer marketplace (access to writers)
- Content Studio
- Editorial Calendar
How has ClearVoice improved your content marketing?
ClearVoice has essentially been the spark for our content marketing. Without a dedicated writer on staff, we were only able to write content when we had downtime, sadly… and we never had downtime. ClearVoice has allowed us to generate content regularly to drastically increase our company’s reach, branding and lead generation.
That’s what we do. What tips and best practices would you offer to other companies using ClearVoice?
Content marketing is an intricate balance of SEO, thought leadership and product selling. When creating content, think about your reader first and ask, “Would I want to read this?” If it is one long sales pitch, the answer is probably no. Create content that hits your product’s SEO targets without selling hard. Offer a benefit (outside of your product) to your readers. This will lead to higher traffic, lead generations, shares, branding and overall reach.
What tools were you using before ClearVoice that you have been able to replace?
WordPress and a keyboard. Very sad times.
How much time does ClearVoice save you in a week compared to the tools you were previously using for content creation and management?
I will occasionally write a blog post myself. To create the concept, do the research and get my ideas written down and then edited by our internal team, it commonly takes a half of a day (at least). At Apruve, we’re blogging five times a week, adding up to 20 hours (4 hours X 5 days) if we did it ourselves. With ClearVoice, I can handle the content generation and management in just 2.5 hours, saving us 17.5 hours a week!
How much time does ClearVoice save you a week compared to the tools you were previously using for writer recruiting?
At least 17.5 hours a week. Our previous tools were very problematic.
Are you developing content aligned with a keyword strategy? If yes, has the content you created using ClearVoice helped you achieve a higher search engine ranking?
We have increased our SEO ranking across the board. Letting our freelance writers know our targeted keywords has drastically helped us reach our keyword goals. Using an SEO/SEM software in tandem with ClearVoice is highly recommend — we use SEMRush to help us plan our content needs and then HubSpot for the lead generation.
Are you using content to help drive sales leads? If yes, have you seen an increase in leads as a result of the content you’ve created using ClearVoice?
Our main metric is lead generation to boost the sales pipeline. In our time using ClearVoice we have seen an increase of organic leads that have increased the size of our pipeline drastically.
Thank you, Matt! ClearVoice Apruve.
Right backatcha, ClearVoice.