“This post is a part of our Content Salad series, where we invite industry experts to share their knowledge. FactorDaily is a technology news site from India that offers us insights on technology and the world around us. This interview with Abhash Kumar, who was the Head of Marketing at FactorDaily till February this year is offered to give you a glimpse of the thought process of leaders in the industry and a chance to learn from the best.”
An MIT Alumnus, Abhash Kumar has gained marketing experience from renowned companies like YourStory Media and FactorDaily. He is passionate about humanizing the online marketing space, psychology, and experimentation-based systems. In this interview, he has provided valuable insights about the importance of content marketing with FactorDaily as an example.
Promotion through flashy ad banners might catch the attention of your users for a small while. But soon, it will be a forgotten memory for them. So, if you want to go for something permanent that doesn’t constantly burn a hole in your pocket – then look no further.
Your answer lies in content marketing, Content is the most powerful tool for any brand that works multiway – It drives brand awareness, creates brand authority and most importantly forms a connection between the brand and its users.
We discussed the importance of content marketing with Abhash who, at the time of this interview, headed marketing at FactorDaily. And he gave us some really interesting insights. We will get to them. But first, take a moment and read up a little on FactorDaily and also get to know Abhash.
FactorDaily is a technology news site based in India that provides insights on companies, culture, future, and lifestyles.
Abhash is a seasoned professional in digital marketing and has over 4 years of experience in the same. Before FactorDaily, he has been an early employee at now renowned brands like YourStory and Byju’s. He had also helped co-found Gyan Lab (kidovators.com in its current avatar) and has freelanced for a variety of education and training based projects. He is crazily passionate about humanizing the Online marketing space. And believes that education will turn on its head by 2035. He specialises in helping organizations with their online outreach, blogging, marketing products to netizens effectively and building reputations via human connections for Online businesses
Why is content important?
Content is the king according to me. For a media company like FactorDaily, it is their bread and butter. Even for the non-media companies content serves as a crucial element in communicating the brand’s language to the audience. You should not go wrong with your content marketing strategy and it should be in sync with your audience’s thought process
What’s your target audience?
Well, at FactorDaily, we cater to the tech Junta, people who live and breathe technology. These guys want to be on the top of their technology game. This set of people are looking for insights that will help them make sense of the way our world is changing because of technology, and also empower them with ideas to compete in this new world. They are specifically interested in upcoming tech trends and topics such as blockchain, artificial intelligence, robotics, drones and machine learning etc.
Tell us about your team. How do they work around creating good content?
Well, the team is comprised of veteran tech journalists, who work their fingers to the bone to deliver quality content. This is pure-play journalism.
The reporters go out and get the scoops. And the stories are original, in-depth, fact-based and very comprehensive. The reporters do a maximum of 1 to 2 stories a week. This results in a high-quality output.
What is the revenue model?
At this stage, our aim is to build a strong set of loyal readers, and that is the utmost priority. Ensuring that will take care of the revenue and the revenue channels are being figured out along the way.
We want to be in the league of ” WIRED” and “Harvard Business Review”. Currently, there is the website and mobile web version where serve quality, fact-based, deeply-researched journalism to our audience. This content is free for consumption.
What social media channel works the best for you?
Twitter works very well for us as opposed to Facebook. The reason is our audience – our audience is discerned and well-read. Secondly, our content does not fall into the category of “viral content” and is of the deeply-researched and long-form kind and hence, Twitter is our realm.
Also currently we are not investing in paid ads – our kind of content is not the one that you shove into people’s feeds with a google or a facebook ad. The high quality of journalism speaks for itself and our readers refer our work to newer set of audiences. Apart from Twitter, we do very well on Google News also.
Is there any referral traffic?
Yes, there is. Our content is very unique – most of our pieces are breaking news. This leads to us being quoted and backlinked by established media players. So, there is a lot of referral traffic as well.
What’s your customer journey like?
Well, the reader lands on our website to read one of our pieces, and there we have two lead capture forms – Email Newsletter and Whatsapp Capture form. The first one which is a newsletter – if someone subscribes to that, we start sending them the day’s stories through email. These stories are about companies with a huge technological footprint in India or about frontier technologies (like AI, Blockchain, Drones, Robotics etc)
The other is a WhatsApp capture box, where the user can choose to subscribe to our stories and breaking news on their whatsapp. It is a simple process. They will be redirected to their phone whatsapp or whatsapp web after entering their name in the capture box.
What are your core priorities in terms of content?
Like I said earlier, our high quality of journalism speaks for itself. But as far as marketing is concerned, we want to focus on emails as our primary channel. We want to make email our content hub, and not just a place where people click and get redirected to other places. The email campaign content should be extremely powerful.
Any tools that you use for measuring the impact of content?
We don’t invest in a lot of unnecessary tools. We stick to Google Analytics. Impressions and pageviews don’t matter as much as subscriptions to newsletters, Whatsapp does. Another important metric that we track is the time spent on each article. That helps us in gathering information about what our reader’s preference is.
What’s your strong suit?
There are three. And I am proud to talk about them. One is the editorial perspective that we get from the seasoned journalists who have previously worked with media giants. The content they produce is first rate and first hand. Second is the clean design that we have – many of our design creatives have the look of graphic novels. The best part is that our designers sit with the editorial team, so the story ideas are discussed at the same time as creative ideas. Therefore, the results are streamlined well.
The third is our readability – Since we don’t have myriad of ads on our websites, our readers find it easy to browse through our site. Their experience is by default good.
Any tip to young marketers?
Yes. Content marketers today should focus on content distribution. Most of the marketers spend all their time in creating content but don’t promote it well.
80% of the time should be spent on distribution. An example of good content distribution is ClearTax- They are in the right forums such as Quora and they do their content distribution very well.
Secondly, Content marketing can be a trap for many. Content marketing doesn’t come for cheap considering the resources that are involved from ideating to implementing it. For example, I was in touch with this ticketing company who wanted to start their blog from scratch.
The ideal advice to them would be to leverage an already existing platforms that have massive distribution instead of investing in creating content themselves. The idea is – You should invest in content the right way through the right channels. The event company would get far more traffic by a) sticking to their domain of expertise c) creating awareness through an established content platform with good outreach
Goals of the near future
One of the immediate goals is to build a personalization engine based on user logins so that readers spend time reading stories of their interest. There are some major updates in the works but I am not at liberty to discuss them currently in public
Coming to an end
We had a great time interviewing Abhash, and we would like to extend our heartfelt gratitude to him for taking out the time for answering our questions,and telling us about the importance of content marketing. Content was, is and will always be the king. Employing content the right way will take you a long way. If you want content that is meaningful, and can create value for your brand, then download the e-book right below!