The Content, Commerce & Social Media Revolution

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A Trillion Dollars At Risk All At Once

Global ecommerce moved past a trillion last year. Ecommerce will continue to grow. Continued growth is GOOD and BAD news. When a category is growing at better than 20% a year for five years big trends can mask important sub-trends.

Social media is an important ecommerce sub-trend. After seven years as a Director of Ecommerce (2003 – 2010) content was a constant struggle. Ecommerce needs a new drug.

Content Merchant and the new Ecommerce grahpic Data is a drug when you are an Ecommerce Director.

Current Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) focus on conversion. Conversion by traffic, traffic source, brand, page and persona (customer archetypes) is great and important information, but there’s a problem. There is little to no information about how CONTENT influences conversions (money or opting in to your email list).

When I was an Ecommerce Director content produced headaches. Should we tell stories? We did and anything more than 100 words without bullet points lowered conversions. Should we create videos? We did and finally found a video script recipe that worked:

  • Less than 2 minutes.
  • Soft music in with tempo build to slightly faster paced by end of the video.
  • Voice over narration showing hands demonstrating the product.
  • End with Buzz Team star rating.

Their Content on OUR Websites

Today it is important to find ways to curate THEIR content on our websites. The shift from CREATION to CURATION is a HUGE SHIFT. A huge shift with the same Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) as before. If my content engine was barely tuned as a Director of Ecommerce THEN tuning an ecommerce site to understand its content metrics is no better today.

Today there is a higher penalty. Why? Because today, post Google’s many changes, content is truly KING and context is QUEEN. How can today’s ecommerce directors know what kinds of content increase Lifetime Value (LTV) from a customer segment while others decrease LTV and lower conversion?

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The Content & Commerce Revolution

Ecommerce merchants are missing something. Merchants who know what kinds of content create positive or negative reaction has an advantage, but there’s a problem.

There are several problems.

Content doesn’t happen in a vacuum. Content, particularly User Generated Content (UGC), happens rarely and only when THINKING proceeds an ASK. “No one writes any comments or reviews,” my friend complained. He was ready to toss baby and bathwater. “Of course no one is sharing content,” I said with a smile, “you don’t value their input so why should they share it”.

At the CORE of my friend’s problem was…HIM. The site he constructed wasn’t conversational. His site lectured. Adding comments to a site like his creates dissonance. The site seems to be a huge LECTURE. Lecture websites were popular before social media made everything and anything a conversation. Now his lecture site was being used for reference material, but relationships were being formed with competitors more social version of his lecture site.

These “upstart” “clean slate” sites STATED with social and worked backwards putting my friend at a distinct disadvantage. Instead of rethinking everything including how and were he found content the solution was to slap a “comments” section on every page. If you don’t believe in the conversation it shows.

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CrowdFunde To The Rescue

CrowdFunde is pioneering new Key Performance Indicators. Our KPIs are designed to help merchants and content marketers tap wisdom of crowds to KNOW what content does what. Some content is great for traffic while other content helps with conversion. Really special content helps with both traffic and conversion. Know your content to know your future.

The right feedback will help our friend with the lecture website make a fully informed decision about content types, sources and subject. Content is KING and context is QUEEN. Our friend needs to know where to start. We used to create keyword research to know what PPC to buy. Now we do similar research to know what content to create.

We look for “blue oceans” or oversubscribed and under published content. Blue ocean content, content not turned red by competition, is harder and harder to find, but there is always some content overlooked by others that can contribute with just the right spin. “Just the right spin” sounds too random.

CrowdFunde’s dashboard will help our “lecture site” friend know how to create “just the right spin” because she can quickly connect to similar content. You never step in the same content river twice, but having SOME information about past performance based on our friend’s audience is much better than taking such a huge risk COLD.

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