Our longest-standing Brafton client Paul Banas is unlike the average marketer. Most businesses have started investing in content marketing in recent years, but Paul has been in publishing industry for quite some time. As GreatDad.com and Pregnancy Magazine’s founder, he’s both a writer and editor with a strong understanding of brand voice and writing for specific audiences.
His similarity to our other clients lies in time management and resourcing – Paul is understandably busy, and he needed a content marketing agency partnership that would provide fresh, daily content – while also providing consultancy and strategic expertise.
Here’s a look at how our relationship has evolved over the years:
How did you decide on a content marketing agency?
I met Brafton at a tradeshow almost 10 years ago when content marketing was “new.” The team and I immediately had a connection about where I was trying to go with my content strategy and what Brafton could offer. I was really interested in a partnership with a provider who could offer something beyond the basic service. I immediately knew I could grow with Brafton, and learn a lot from their content marketing consultants in terms of SEO and having a content solution.
Tell us about the setting up your strategy with Brafton’s creative brief.
The briefing process with Brafton was very valuable. It started out with a discussion about my business goals and layered on that is Brafton’s knowledge. It wasn’t a stagnant document that I signed and was locked into for six months – It changes as strategic needs change, as keyword information comes in, as more and more business opportunities come in that could drive that strategy. It’s an ongoing process that in general has been very productive.
You’ve talked about SEO being an important goal. What made you choose a content marketing agency over an SEO firm?
Opposed to hiring an SEO firm that would sell me specific services related to SEO, Brafton’s coming at it from a different point of view in developing content. I was attracted to the idea that I could get SEO consulting alongside content development.
What’s it like working with Brafton’s content writers and editors?
The partnership has always been 100 percent collaborative, always “how can we get you the thing that you want.” My Brafton content writers bring an invaluable point of view, but it’s always making sure that I’m happy at the end of the day and getting what’s going to make the most sense to our readers, our SEO strategy and the other things that we’re doing on the site or within the magazine.
Do you feel that your Brafton team understands your unique marketing goals?
We have some interesting challenges with both Pregnancy Magazine and GreatDad. We’ve got a male target audience, and then for Pregnancy Magazine we have a mostly female target audience. What I hired Brafton for, and what we’ve really got is the ability to speak in all those different kinds of voices, whether it’s writing a movie review that has a “snarky, bored Dad” feeling to it, or a pregnancy article that’s on some really hard, scientific facts that’s breaking news on health and pregnancy – the voice changes for those different articles, and I don’t have to worry about if the voice is going to be correct.
“I needed articles that fit into the framework of what a lot of consumers want, which is short-form articles that come out on a regular basis. So my decision was, could I write all those on a regular basis, writing three or four of those a day? No. I’ve got other things to do, I can’t manage my time that way. And that’s where Brafton comes in. The articles were automatically streamed into my website and there’s no real minute-by-minute management of the process.”
The reporting hasn’t been completely ad-hoc or completely mechanized. It’s very much been adjusted to what I want to look at as well as what Brafton feels it’s important to look at. Brafton sets the stage for ongoing strategic conversations on how we need to tweak out content, voice and keywords so that we achieve the results we’re looking for.
You joined Brafton before our social media services were available. What made you want to jump on board?
It’s a credit to Brafton that they’ve jumped into the social media space and have developed a service that is really focused on not just using that content but how to do some of the work for marketers that needs to get done in the social media space.
I was a little bit late to the social media space. We’re playing a strong game of catch up right now, leaning very heavily on Brafton to provide that momentum. What I really enjoy about the relationship is we’re always trying to come up with what else we can do with that content, whether it’s incorporating the content in our magazine as special news, using it on our website, in our newsletters, some of which are automated and completely run by Brafton and on social media. That’s really where the magic is – being able to repurpose our content for more success.