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Upon realizing that her decision to pursue a theatre degree would lead to a life of little to no financial growth, Nadya decided to complete a Masters Degree in Digital Media. 

Soon after that she began her work at Venngage Infographics, where she was told she would be trained in digital marketing en lieu of her lack of experience. Three years later and Nadya is still at Venngage wondering when she will get the training she was promised. 

Eventually Nadya became obsessed will all things related to Lead Generation, SEO and Content Marketing, and with the help of her team, managed to lead to a 2000% growth in acquisition and monetization for Venngage, but she prefers to take sole credit for it when asked. Her co-workers have described her as “wildly unpredictable”, “a weirdo” and “bald”, all of which are true. 

Nadya has written for and been featured on publications such as Forbes, The Next Web, Huffington Post, Entrepreneur, Mashable, Wired and CBC News. She also speaks at a number of events every year on topics ranging from principles and strategies for creating viral content, to the importance of visual communication and how they can lead to acquisition growth. 

Here are some recent articles:

https://venngage.com/blog/growth-strategy/

https://venngage.com/blog/presentation-design-statistics/

When Nadya is not at Venngage, she spends much of her free time drinking and contemplating her existence. In an effort to transform her unhealthy hobby into a productive project, she decided to start Drunk Entrepreneurs, a web-series where she drunkenly shares marketing advice with whoever is depressed enough to watch. She considers her dog, Scooby, to be her best friend. 

Nadya will be live on Tuesday, July 17 starting at 930 AM PT for one and a half hours during which she will answer as many questions as possible.

  • SP

    Sujan Patel

    12 days ago #

    I've got a lot of questions for you:

    1. Do infographics for link building still work?

    2. What's the best use (not your own) of visual communication you've seen?

    3. As a marketer, what's most impactful thing you've done at Venngage?

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 7 hours ago #

      Hey Sujan!

      Well you're in luck because I've got some answers:

      1) Do infographics for link building still work?

      100% - one thing to keep in mind is that infographics are very easy to repurpose. In fact, that’s been the primary way Venngage has built its links over the past 3 years.

      Almost every single article we publish summarizes the content into an infographic-
      but we’ve also conducted a number of studies on our own content and learned that the more we use visuals throughout our content, the better the overall engagement is as well (ie. higher time on page, lower bounce rates, more pages per session) which of course is a very important Google ranking factor as well.

      4 Share
    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 7 hours ago #

      To your next question,

      2. What's the best use (not your own) of visual communication you've seen?

      I think MailChimp does a great job with their annual reports (here is one example: https://mailchimp.com/2016/).

      You get a much better sense of their company culture and personality with these reports- plus they actually educate you on how their users are engaging with their product.

      1 Share
    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 7 hours ago #

      and then finally to answer your 3rd question:

      3. As a marketer, what's most impactful thing you've done at Venngage?

      I mean, I hate to toot my own horn (just kidding, I love to do that) but I think it’s being able to trust my team to take ownership of their own jobs and understanding that I can’t possibly know everything that is going on all the time.

      But by giving others an opportunity to run with their own ideas (and at times make their own mistakes) they are able to learn and grow a lot faster, and become much more well-rounded marketers and contributors.

      Thanks for the questions and hope this answers you, Sujan :)

      1 Share
  • OM

    Orbit Media

    12 days ago #

    "Nadya became obsessed will all things related to Lead Generation, SEO and Content Marketing, and with the help of her team, managed to lead to a 2000% growth in acquisition and monetization..."

    What tactics did you use specifically to generate that growth?

    Thank you!

    • JQ

      Jason Quey

      11 days ago #

      To add to Amanda's question: what tactics/strategies do you believe are still relevant today?

      Thanks for doing this AMA! :)

      • NK

        Nadya Khoja

        about 6 hours ago #

        And hey Jason, to answer your question:

        Like I mentioned in my response to Amanda’s question, I think relying on trends and tactics doesn’t work.

        Strategies vary per company, per product and per team. But again, you need to double down on what you know how to do and avoid getting distracted by other trends just because someone else you know was able to turn a bit of a profit from a new channel.

        The second you stop focusing on/improving on what you already know is working, you risk losing out on a lot of growth from a reliable channel.

        A lot of managers also take on too much on their own, and don’t trust or rely on their teams to execute effectively.

        I actually do very little of the actual execution myself now, and focus more on training my team or helping them understand how to continue and scale what is already working well. Only then do I have an opportunity to test new channels on my own.

        So in sum:

        1. Figure out a channel and strategy that is already working
        2. Scale it.
        3. Train people to do it as good, or better than you.
        4. Move on to figuring something else out.
        5. Repeat.

        Thanks for asking and I hope this helps!

        3 Share
    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      Hi Orbit Media (aka AMANDA)

      This is a really loaded question but I’ll give you the high level overview.

      1. We identified which channels were already working (even a little bit) and where there was still a lot of room for improvement.

      2. We worked on improving very specific inputs of that channel→ ie. To improve our SEO, we needed to get more links.

      And that in turn lead to experiments on figuring out how to get more links, and also better quality links, which in turn lead to a realization that by creating better content, or more engaging content it would be easier to get more quality links organically, and so on and so forth.

      3. So by doubling down on that process and continuously focusing on improvement (even down to the most specific metrics) we were able to see significant growth over time.

      2 Share
    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      But, Amanda, the main thing I’d take away from it all is that when one thing is working, don’t get distracted by trendy new channels and tactics- keep working on that channel and figuring out what else you can do to scale it.

      At first, we focused on just trying to get 1 page to rank for a specific keyword. When we learned how to make that happen, we applied it to various other pages and keywords and started taking a very strategic approach to what type of content to create, which pages to prioritize for organic growth etc.

      At the beginning it was only me, and then eventually one other person executing on our organic growth. Now I have a marketing team of 6 people- 60% of their efforts are dedicated to doing what we know, and 40% is working towards testing new strategies and channels.

      2 Share
  • RS

    Ross Simmonds

    12 days ago #

    What is the #1 most important thing to you when identifying marketing talent to work with you at Venngage?

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 7 hours ago #

      Hey Ross!

      Hmm, this is a great question- I have a lot of possible responses but here's what I'll say:

      Do they fit our core values? I’d rather hire on mindset vs skill. Because if they fit all of our core values, they WILL be a strong contributor on our team.

      Ultimately I’m looking for someone who is resourceful, takes ownership, who is intuitive, who is ambitious and motivated, who is a team player, who is competitive and who is constantly trying to be better at something.

      I’m also looking for people with a track record of hitting their goals. If they have those things, I will hire them.

      Now, I have a lot of different ways of testing those things out, so if they fail my tests and interviews then no matter how many “years” of experience they have-- in the words of Drake and Michael Jackson in that new song they “don’t matter to me”...(ie. I won’t hire them)

      Hope that helps :)

      1 Share
  • AO

    Aaron Orendorff

    12 days ago #

    What skills must develop before going after a CMO position ... and what skills can you "fake" to then develop an the job?

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 7 hours ago #

      Hello Aaron! Thanks for the question :)

      This is a bit of a difficult question for me, since my journey into leadership is kind of unconventional.

      Anyone can be the CMO or a Head of a department of a company if they founded it, or joined very early as a partner/at a very early stage (technically speaking). Which was kind of the case with me, BUT that being said I didn’t start out as Head of marketing- I got promoted later on as we grew.

      And if I hadn’t already been a natural go-to person for other members of the marketing team (ie. someone they looked to for answers or guidance) I wouldn’t have been promoted.

      Now, I definitely don’t have the qualifications ON PAPER to Head Marketing at a major corporation since most large organization look for proven experience over many years.

      I’ve kind of had to jump in the deep-end and figure out how to swim while being at Venngage, and there isn’t a moment when I don’t feel the imposter syndrome.

      1 Share
    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 7 hours ago #

      Buuuut that being said, I’ve always been a strong believer in faking it till you make it- but calculated faking.

      Don’t promise anything that seems impossible to achieve, only make the promises that seem somewhat within your reach (even if you haven’t figured it out JUST yet, but you think you know the path to getting there). Does that make sense?

      In my opinion, soft skills that reflect the culture and values of a company are usually more important than the technical skills (don’t get me wrong, those are important too)- but if someone is resourceful and has a proven track-record of doing things right and executing their ideas, that to me is more valuable than a degree in “marketing” or “business”.

      Does that provide somewhat of an answer to your question?

      1 Share
  • MN

    Midori Nediger

    12 days ago #

    What drove you to start Drunk Entrepreneurs? What's the most helpful entrepreneurship tip you've learned so far on the series?

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 7 hours ago #

      Hi Midori thanks for the question :)

      Straight up? I was drinking with a friend...who is an entrepreneur. And as we continued to drink, I realized he was telling me a lot of great gold about business growth/marketing.

      And then I thought to myself “Man, I would watch a show like this” and then I thought “Man, I should do a show like this.”

      That being said, my web-series is a serious work in progress right now, but I have some really exciting guests lined up that I will be releasing episodes for in the next few months.

      But I’m really excited for the next episode with Calendy’s former Director of Marketing, Claire Suellentrop who shared some really insightful tips on user research and retention, and also about steps for transitioning into your own business. Don’t want to share too much right now, but keep an eye out for the interview!

  • SS

    Susan Su

    12 days ago #

    Nadya, where do you think the state of SEO is headed this year and in 2019? How does your team think about evolving your SEO strategy as those channel dynamics change? Specifically, do you revisit quarterly, yearly, etc? How do you plan for future SEO initiatives if past results are getting worse at guaranteeing future returns?

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      Susan, appreciate the question.

      I always enjoy when people get scared about SEO changing, or freaked out that suddenly their results will get wiped out etc etc.

      But here is the thing, people are always going to seek out information, right? When we have a question about anything, where do we go? Google. If we want to purchase something, we’re likely to do the initial research on Google.

      So, keeping that in mind, as long as SEO strategies are focused on providing quality results for people’s queries, and ensuring a good user experience- I don’t think there is anything to worry about. Google keeps pushing towards better User Experience, so always consider that with any SEO efforts.

      2 Share
    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      As per what our team does- we take a very keyword driven approach to the content we create, but we also strongly consider our audience’s feedback and questions while creating that content.

      On top of that, we track a range of metrics which we refer to as “engagement” metrics (and these numbers correlate directly with user experience for us).

      So as long as we continue to create content our users want to engage with, we know our SEO initiatives will work in our favour. By switching gears and working with UX in mind, our organic traffic has improved tremendously in the past year.

      But the people who should worry are the ones using shady tactics to drive a ton of low quality links to their sites, or relying on outdated “grey” or “black” hat SEO trends etc.

      Does that answer your question?

  • JT

    Jason Thibault

    12 days ago #

    Thanks for doing this Nadya!

    1. You guys create some pretty epic content assets. What does your content promotion process look like in 2018?

    2. My wife and I usually make it to Toronto once or twice a year [we're Mtl based]. And we like *the spirits*. Which 🥃 cool bars 🥃 are the locals hiding from us?

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      Hey Jason,

      Our content creation follows an 80/20 rule- 20% of the effort goes into the actual creation of the content asset, 80% of it takes promotion into account (and that means thinking about promotion during the creation process).

      Our content is broken down into categories: content that is meant to educate users, and content that is meant to inspire and content that is created with the goal of generating PR/high quality links.

      Each member of the team is also trained on content promotion best practices- we have a playbook that continuously gets updated and as different people identify new methods of promotion that work, we add a new playbook chapter (this is part of the deliverables required per person on our team as well as everyone at a high level is striving to “master” a certain area of marketing).

      Everyone has minimum requirements for their content and specific goals to hit in terms of traffic- so by setting the expectations of content performance upfront, it pushes people to take serious ownership of their own content creation and promotion efforts.

      It’s not a perfect strategy yet, but it’s something that is continuously improved upon. The main thing I’ll say is that relationship building goes a long way, and the more each member of the team is working towards building a strong and reliable network, the better they are at hitting their goals with content.

      2 Share
      • NK

        Nadya Khoja

        about 6 hours ago #

        2) And OMG there are so many good bars- what do you prefer?

        If you like good cocktails/speakeasies I would check out:

        Gift Shop (it’s located at the back of a barber shop on Ossington near Queen)

        The Walton (in Little italy- I just went the other day and they also have a gorgeous patio)

        Rush Lane

        Pretty Ugly (I go here a lot because it’s next to my house and has a great atmosphere and cocktails as well)

        For craft beer , wine and whiskey:

        The Craft in Liberty Village

        Folly Brewpub (over 400 whiskeys and a great micro brew)

        L’unita (tons of wine and on Tuesdays their whole menu is half price)

        And let me know next time you're in Toronto because I will gladly accompany you to any of the above places!

  • BJ

    Ben Jacobson

    12 days ago #

    The growth strategy process framework you outline here (https://venngage.com/blog/growth-strategy/) is just awesome. But today's marketers are spread in so many different directions. How to you manage to stick to a methodically outlined process, even when you're getting barraged with new priorities?

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      This is a great question, and I would look at that framework as a guide for breaking down goals. However, I’m interested in getting a bit more of an understanding of what you mean by “new priorities”- because in terms of setting and hitting growth goals, I think there needs to be SOME constraint to what needs to be done, and how much room you are willing to allot to new priorities.

      1 Share
      • NK

        Nadya Khoja

        about 6 hours ago #

        If the new priorities are related to the goals you break down, then yes that should be taken into consideration, but I don’t think anyone should be doing “work” for the sake of doing work- everything should have a direct tie in to the goals established.

        This is where creating a detailed roadmap and strategy becomes crucial. By outlining exactly what tasks and experiments need to be run within a strict time frame, you become aware of what is realistic and possible.

        Here’s an example- let’s say you’ve identified that your goal for the year is to increase the activation metrics of your users. For Venngage, we measure that by the number of successfully completed infographics. But having that as a goal is too vast and hard to measure, so we need to break it down more.

        From doing so we may identify that the problem is actually an onboarding issue, and so we may decide to focus only on that first.

        After further breaking down our onboarding flow, we may identify that there are 4 main metrics we need to influence, and in order to influence them we need to start tracking and experimenting with some new product/feature implementations.

        By roadmapping all of that, we can actually take into account the effort required per team and per person, and then based on how many outside priorities we need to account for, we can adjust our roadmap.

        But to summarize all that- I think that setting a limitation or constraint is the only way to ACTUALLY hit the goal. If you’re too loose with the process, you won’t accomplish anything, and if the constraints are way too specific, you miss out on opportunities to run new and potentially important experiments. There is a fine line and it takes practice to get right, and of course the process is different for every single company too!

  • IA

    its abbie

    5 days ago #

    Hi Nadya!

    I saw you were a theatre major in college, I'm actually in a similar boat as you!

    I'm a motion designer on a small marketing team, and I haven't had any strategic marketing experience before this job (I'm a year out of college). Although I got hired for my creative skills, I want to be a contributing member to the strategic side of the marketing team, especially since we're so small.

    But marketing and growth seem like a vast ocean of info, especially in the digital marketing realm where everything is so targeted yet oversaturated. Any advice for a creative wanting to dive into strategic marketing? Where do I even start?

    Thank you!!

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      Hey Abbie! That's amazing and great to hear :)

      My honest answer is that there is no silver bullet. I wouldn’t consider myself an expert at marketing strategy either and it’s something I’ve been working on improving for a while.

      The best thing I would recommend and what has and continues to be working for me would be to keep breaking down your goals into the smallest doable tasks/deliverables (what you can accomplish on a weekly basis) and then setting deadlines for those goals. That simple.

      Strategy and hitting goals always starts at the end- I like to think of the analogy of a recipe. Let’s say you want to make a pizza from scratch- that’s the end result.

      First, you need all the ingredients- the dough, the toppings, the sauce etc.

      But if you break that down further, you actually need to make the dough and the sauce from scratch- so now you need not only the ingredients for that, but you need the right process of combining them so it turns out right.

      At the risk of sounding like a complete cliché, strategy is like making a pizza (I am reading this as I type it and I’m cringing and hate myself already) - you need to see all the little inputs and piece together how they will result in the output you want.

      THEN only once you have the little inputs can you start diving deeper in how to achieve them (ie. you need to google the recipe for creating the dough before you can achieve making the pizza- ya hear?)

      On that note, I am now craving pizza.

      • IA

        its abbie

        about 4 hours ago #

        This makes so much sense, definitely going to work on looking for smaller goals to tackle, thank you!

  • DH

    Dani Hart

    1 day ago #

    Hi Nadya - thanks for joining us!

    You had 7 questions from people within an hour of your AMA going live. I'd love to understand more about how you promoted the AMA and any recommendations you have for other AMA hosts.

    Looking forward to learning from you!

    Cheers!
    Dani

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      Hey Dani,

      Here is the honest answer...
      I made a bunch of fake accounts and asked them myself.

      Just kidding. But I did message people in my network 1-1 and let them know I was doing the AMA and if they felt like asking any questions, that I would be happy to have them contribute.

      This was done through a variety of places- LinkedIn, Facebook, Slack, Twitter DMs, carrier pigeon, etc.

      I also emailed my own personal list to let them know about the AMA, as well as shared the link across social channels.

      But I’ve always been a huge advocate of building personal relationships and helping people out on a 1-1 basis. It also helps when you are trying to build your own influence and expertise (as I share in a comedy talk that is actually pretty serious that I did at CMC which is posted here: https://thisisnadya.com/speaking/).

      • DH

        Dani Hart

        about 6 hours ago #

        This is awesome. Thanks for sharing! I'll use this to help future guests amp up their AMAs.

        Totally agree personal relationships & helping others are hugely important in getting good responses..

  • NK

    Nadya Khoja

    about 5 hours ago #

    Thanks for all the questions everyone! I never thought it was possible to exhaust my fingers from typing so much...but you guys proved me wrong.

    If you have any follow-up questions, I'm happy to answer them over Twitter (@nadyakhoja) or just keep adding them here and I'll come back and reply as best I can :)

  • JD

    Jeilan Devanesan

    12 days ago #

    Hey Nadya,

    Is growth absolutely necessary? What does growth look like for a company that wants to stay small? Like, you don't want to expand and hire dozens of new people. But you can't quite go on doing the same thing over and over, right? Anyway, looking forward to your AMA!

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 5 hours ago #

      Hey Jeilan.

      Are you suggesting that there are some companies who don't want to grow? In that case I'm not sure I can help since my expertise is not in shrinking revenue or keeping it stagnant :P

      BUT growth doesn't always mean you need to hire tons of people- sustainable growth can be achieved with a small team.

      Look at companies like Basecamp - a 100 million dollar company with about 50 people on the team.

      If you have a team made up of A players- you can probably afford to stay small and lean for a long time while experiencing high user and revenue growth.

      Does that somewhat answer your question?

  • SM

    Sara McGuire

    12 days ago #

    If a piece of content you produce performs well, what can you do to try and repeat your success?

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      Hello hello, Sara!

      This is a solid question and there are a few things I would do.

      1. I’d do an analysis of why that piece of content performed well, and look at some other articles that also performed well.

      2. Then I’d look at articles that didn’t perform well and compare them to see if I can identify any patterns between the ones that did much better. (the title, the formatting of the article, the promotion process of the article, the author, the visuals in the article, etc etc etc)

      3. Then based on those patterns I’d try to create something that followed the same trends.

      But I would also try to milk the content that performed well as much as possible. Let’s say you write a piece and you notice that your audience is really engaging well with it (ie. the time on page is really high, you’re getting lots of comments and shares etc) and as a result driving lots of traffic to that article.

      Well, you could probably transform that into something else, like an ebook, or a webinar or a video etc.

      Then you could also repurpose that as guest posts for other sites (because if people liked the original article, chances are other sites would like variations of that same content).

      Keep doing that, and paired with the first points on identifying the patterns of your top content, you should have a pretty decent track record of content that performs well.

      I strongly believe that there is no point in producing content if the goal is not for it to drive traffic and new users, and if you’re not actively trying to create and promote that kind of content, you’re seriously wasting your time and underutilizing your resources.

      1 Share
  • NB

    Nasser Basim

    12 days ago #

    Hi Nadya, thanks for doing this AMA! I have a few questions:

    1) What's your process for identifying, choosing and scaling a new marketing channel?

    2) How much emphasis do you put on Automation. And which platforms have worked for you?

    Looking forward to this AMA :)
    Thanks!

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      Hi Nasser,

      1) This is a similar question to Amanda’s. With Venngage, there was already a little bit of traction on the product when I joined, but most of our traffic was coming in through a referral from one single article about infographics. As a result, we also had some traffic coming from organic search as well.

      At the time, the conversion rates from organic were a bit higher and it seemed like a lower cost channel for us, which is why we went after it, but there are a few things to keep in mind when deciding which channel to go after:

      1. How much time are you willing to put into this channel?
      2. How much money can you put into this channel?
      3. What is the effort required to scale?
      4. What is the LTV of your product?
      5. What are the conversion rates?

      If your product has a very high LTV (life time value), then using a paid channel (ie. Adwords or Social Paid) might be worthwhile to explore. But if you don’t have funding and your LTV isn’t that high, you probably need a more cost efficient channel (referral or SEO could work in this case).

      SEO however requires a lot of time, whereas paid advertising can get you results relatively quickly in most cases.

      The first thing I’d do is always check your Google Analytics to see which areas seem to be benefiting your business most, if this is possible. And you can run some tests in the best performing area to try and scale it.

      However it also really depends on the product itself and the industry. For instance if you are in the ecommerce space and sell high-end fashion at a low cost, you might benefit more for social channels like Instagram and Facebook rather than Linkedin or SEO - or even consider Amazon to be a channel for you.

      1 Share
      • NK

        Nadya Khoja

        about 6 hours ago #

        2) Automation is a HUGE topic, and there are a lot of little things we automate like lead flows, email drip campaigns-- basically anything really simple that needs to be repeated frequently and that doesn’t require a living person to do the job in order for it to be well done.

        Does that make sense? The use of automation at Venngage though is to make a process easier for the person doing it, but not to completely take over the process. I hope that helps!

  • WH

    Wilson Hung

    12 days ago #

    Is there a "hit or success %" KPI ya'll track to understand the effectiveness of getting ranked on the 1st page for SEO? Something like "of X articles we produce each quarter, Y% get ranked to the 1st page, Z % get ranked on 2nd page"

    If not, how do you determine the effectiveness/probability of success of the SEO/content team? If so, how do you do this?

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      My honest answer is yes and no.

      From my understanding and experience creating content and trying to get it to rank, there are obviously a lot of best practices that are known and frequently written about when it comes to ranking (which we follow).

      Such as best practices for optimizing content, link building, keyword prioritization etc etc etc.

      But, like I said before it all comes down to whether or not Google thinks you’re creating the best user experience for your audience.

      • NK

        Nadya Khoja

        about 6 hours ago #

        I also know that creating content “hubs” or clusters is an important step in improving overall rankings.

        Here’s an example:

        Venngage is known as an infographic tool, not only to our users but to Google as well. So when we publish an article about infographics (it can be almost anything on the topic of infographics) we have noticed that we have a much better chance in ranking higher for infographic related keywords.

        Now, if we were to suddenly start talking about a subject like “bone broth”, there is a really slim chance we would appear very high in search results for that term- because we are not an authority on the subject.

        Be creating content clusters however, you are building these little bubbles of authority on a specific subject so that Google can start to push your pages up. This is mostly my understanding from observation and practice of course.

        Now, let’s say we not only want to be known as an infographic tool but we also want to become known as a presentation making tool- we need to start building out a lot of content (and features) that can help us become known for that area or that domain.

        Then we do our keyword research (mostly for inspiration) and focus on creating content that falls into the above categories I mentioned. If you take a look at our blog, you’ll see what I’m talking about. Just search “presentation” and you’ll get a better idea of what I’m talking about: https://venngage.com/blog

        In terms of what KPI we track, I do set goals for ranking, but it’s not to rank 1st per-say on a specific terms, it’s more geared towards the traffic that article is bringing in and the number of keywords we are ranking for (I’d rather rank on 5k long tail keywords then put all our effort into trying to rank on a single high volume keyword).

        But I will set milestones each quarter along the lines of “6 out of 10 of these landing pages need to be ranking on the 1st page by end of the quarter. And then maybe 2 should be in the top 3 positions in the US, etc etc etc.

  • BW

    Bill Widmer

    12 days ago #

    What have you found to be the easiest and most effective way to build links?
    Have you found a way of easily finding low-difficulty keywords to rank for?

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      Hey Bill!

      1) I wish there was an “easy” way to build links, haha. But what has worked for us is to focus on creating quality content, or creating content that positions us as a source for information. Conducting surveys or doing original research has probably been one of the most effective types of content that generates links organically.

      In terms of generating high quality press links, we create what we refer to as “viral” content. Whenever I have an opportunity to reinforce a relationship with an editor or writer at a site we want to get featured by, I take it. That means if I’m in the same city as that editor, I try to meet up with them and get to know them more on a personal level.

      This way I have an opportunity of contacting them before we even start working on a new piece to see if it’s something that would be of interest to them. If they like the idea, there is a chance others might be willing to pick it up as well.

      1 Share
      • NK

        Nadya Khoja

        about 6 hours ago #

        2) Yes, but the nature of our tool makes it work. If you take a look at the structure of our templates page (we recently revamped the design and structure of the site) and this allows us to rank our templates on a wide range of long-tail keywords.

        We optimize every single individual template so that it not only has a better chance at ranking on a long tail term (ie. “Colorful Flyer Template”) but because people are more likely to spend a longer time on that page creating the template, that also plays a major role in our rankings since the time on page is so high.

        So what I would ask yourself with any new content or pages that you are trying to rank is:

        How can I format or build this page in a way that encourages people to stay on it for much longer?
        How can I structure it so that I cover a wide range of long-tail keywords (or get it ranking for a large number of terms rather than just a few)?

        I cover (somewhat) of the process for content ideation in this video as well: https://www.drinkwithnadya.com/content-ideas/

  • VG

    Val Geisler

    8 days ago #

    Hi Nadya! What has surprised you the most about viral content? Have you seen a campaign that truly resulted in big gains for the brand (not just a quick win and 15-Internet-minutes of fame)? On the flip side, what are brands missing when it comes to viral campaigns? Who has really missed the mark lately?

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      Hey Val! Nice to see ya here :)

      Yes and we now refer to this content as “hybrid content”. Something that latches onto theme or topic that may be trending, but also has some evergreen benefits. We did a piece on Star Wars Design trends that we launched for the new movie, and another on sorting different companies into their Hogwarts houses based on culture and core values.

      But like I mentioned above, we have different categories of content ranging from education, to inspiration to viral. The strategy behind it is creating a content hub that features an aspect in each of those categories.

      Let’s say we are talking about Infographic Resumes- we might have an article about How to Create an Infographic Resume, then another with 70 Examples of Great Infographic Resumes, and then a viral piece on Kardashian Infographic Resumes. Then we interlink all of those pieces- so if one does really well and drives a lot of traffic, the SEO impact trickles down to everything else that makes up that “cluster”.

      1 Share
      • NK

        Nadya Khoja

        about 6 hours ago #

        And I’d say the main things brands can focus on is trying to think of how that viral piece can directly tie into their product or main offering. Just because memes and funny videos are working, or clickbait titles get shared on a site like Buzzfeed, doesn’t mean it will actually have long-term value for you, but it also really depends on what your goal is.

        If you want to get some high value links for instance because your goal is to increase your site’s domain authority, then a fun trendy article could be beneficial. But if you’re trying to drive sales or conversions, you need to find a way to tie both of those things together.

        Pepsi is a big brand that really missed the mark with their ad featuring Kendall Jenner who handed the police officer a pop can- they didn’t understand why people were protesting against police officers and as a result faced major backlash.

        I think if you’re going to attempt running a viral campaign, know what you want to achieve with it and understand who you are trying to get that campaign in front of.

  • ES

    Emma Siemasko

    7 days ago #

    Hi Nadya! What is the biggest thing that you think contributed to the 2000% growth you were able to achieve at Vengage? And how did you define growth? Very curious on the specific tactics that moved the needle most, and how they all worked together to create amazing results.

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      Thanks for the question, Emma!

      I think I addressed this with Amanda’s question, but the main thing was staying focused on what was working, and continuously working towards improving that thing rather than getting distracted by all the shiny new channels.

      Ultimately we focused on creating content our users wanted, and also considering how we could build our growth strategy (in our case it was SEO and increasing our organic traffic) directly into our product so we could maintain or improve conversion rates as well.

      We saw what was working and applied that to various parts of the product and marketing rather than trying to do a ton of new things.

      It would take me a novel to explain all the tactics (which is our marketing playbook and which is in fact almost 200 pages long much to the chagrin of the marketing team).

  • PH

    Pradyut Hande

    5 days ago #

    Hey Nadya,

    Great to have you here!

    Infographics definitely constitute an important content creation package for B2B businesses.

    What I'd like to know is how such companies can leverage quality infographics in terms of distribution and discoverability. Would love to hear your thoughts on the same!

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 5 hours ago #

      Hello Pradyut thanks for participating,

      Considering we use infographics and other visual assets in everything we do (content creation and promotion) I’m obviously going to tell you that there is massive opportunity for discoverability using infographics.

      One main thing that excited me recently was Google changing up their image search and which now redirects users to the page that the image is featured on rather than opening a preview of that image.

      You know what that means? It means Google understands that visual content has an impact on engagement and user experience so they want more people to use it. Brian Dean has also stated in some studies that even having one image in an article can greatly impact SEO.

      We ran our own tests on our top and lowest performing content and found that articles with more images has way higher engagement that those with fewer images. In fact the content that had a visual every 150-200 words outperformed anything else.

      So to answer your question- companies can leverage infographics to drive up engagement and as a result their discoverability via search engines like Google.

      Does that answer your question?

  • TC

    Tad Chef

    4 days ago #

    Hey Nadya!

    Thank you for answering our questions!

    I wonder about the current state of infographics as it seems to be one of the main focal points of Venngage.

    What is your personal and professional assessment of the demand and supply of infographics and other visual content in 2018?

    Isn't the market over-saturated with (often low quality) infographics by now? Haven't we reached content shock or peak content in this case yet?

    What are the other types of content that work nowadays which are maybe less redundant?

    On a side note: are you really advocating drunkenness? To be honest the name puts me off a bit so I haven't yet found out myself.

    I hope it's about having a funny name and not an actual agenda. When I was younger - like 30 years ago - I used to listen to a group called "Tha Alkaholics" because they were great rappers but I never really appreciated their message as I had some alcoholics in my family who died early.

    Sincerely, tad

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 5 hours ago #

      Hi Tad,

      Since I addressed some of the above questions with other responses I'll try to touch on what wasn't covered before we are out of time.

      Quick answer:

      1) Yes the market is over-saturated with low quality infographics. But like I mentioned above, infographics should be considered a way to summarize complex information and act as a way of repurposing content. Not just created for the sake of putting out MORE content. You still need to focus on quality.

      As for what works which is not redundant? I don't think this is something you should worry about. People tend to copy what they notice is working (which is why there is so much content out there). So if you keep focusing your efforts on finding something that no one else is doing, you will have a very slim chance of succeeding.

      Rather, spend your time identifying what people are doing, and figuring out how you can do the same thing better (if it's a medium that is working well and contributing to growth).

      Does that make sense?

      • NK

        Nadya Khoja

        about 5 hours ago #

        And to your next question,

        I do not in anyway condone unsafe drinking habits (ie. no one should ever be drinking and driving). Which is why I should all my videos in the comfort of my home where I can just go to bed after and where I am safe.

        It's more for the name and the brand though (most of my guests don't really want to get WASTED).

  • BB

    Brittany Berger

    about 22 hours ago #

    Hey Nadya, can't wait to hear from you!

    I'd love to know what you think content creators can do to help infographics stand out these days. Like, what separates good infographics from bad in terms of content? Examples of your favorites from this year or so would be amazing!

    I think they're so incredibly valuable for certain types of information, but know that with so many shitty infogs out there, the content quality needs to be better than what would've passed a few years ago.

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      Hey Brittany!

      I think content creators need to consider infographics as a way to repurpose content that is already working.

      Jumping off of what I told Sara above, if you have a piece of content that is already driving lots of traffic, this would be a good place to test including an infographic.

      And when you think about it, an infographic is really a way of summarizing complex information and making it more skimmable, so you actually need to take design best practices into consideration.

      This is a great article on summarizing information that I would recommend taking a look at if you’re getting started with using infographics:
      https://venngage.com/blog/how-to-summarize/

      and this one also shares some tips on customizing infographics from templates:
      https://venngage.com/blog/amazing-infographics/

      • NK

        Nadya Khoja

        about 6 hours ago #

        I like a lot of Anna Vital’s infographics and find them really interesting, but I think my favourite infographic is one that Joanna Lu made for Venngage which sorted companies into their Hogwarts Houses.

        Not only was it well designed thematically, but it got a ton of engagement from a very specific audience: https://venngage.com/blog/hogwarts-company-culture-infographic/

        But I agree with you that the quality of content needs to be high, as well as the design. If you can create an article people want to read, chances are they would also appreciate a visual summary of that content that gives them the most important information.

  • VB

    Vipul Bansal

    about 11 hours ago #

    1. How big is your marketing team?
    2. Could you give us a peek into your typical day at work?

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      Hey Vipul,

      1) Our marketing team is made up of myself and 5 other full-stack marketers. We also work closely with our information designer to create educational content for our users and informative webinars.

      • NK

        Nadya Khoja

        about 6 hours ago #

        2) Well, everyday is pretty different and I wouldn’t say I have a “typical” day anymore- but on Monday’s I stroll in around 10:30-11 (yes I like to start pretty late in the day).

        We have our company meeting (everyone at Venngage joins this) around that time and we discuss project status, go over any demos from product and marketing, and go over some important metrics as well as our mission and core values.

        Then I sit in on the product sprint meeting where we plan out new features and tasks for our next sprint.

        Then there is lunch.

        Then I have a little bit of time to plan for the week, and then I have 1-1s with half of my team (the other half is on Fridays) where we go over what they are working on that week, and address any questions or issues they might have regarding their work or anything else really.

        And then my day is done.

        Now, at a higher level, my role is very split. Since Venngage is still a pretty small company, my main priorities are not just to manage my team. I am actually very fortunate to have a team where every individual is highly self-sufficient and take ownership of their jobs.

        It gives me an opportunity to test out and own new channels until I can find someone else who can come in and take that over.

        I also spend a lot of my day looking at metrics, prioritizing tasks and experiments in our sprint board, and roadmapping/strategizing different projects in order to hit the company’s goals.

  • VM

    Vijay Mandeep

    about 7 hours ago #

    Hey Nadya,

    Glad to have you here.

    I have followed and used Venngage to create infographics for personal learnings. However, I'd like to understand a couple of things

    1. What strategies/tactics did you use to scale your growth at Venngage to a staggering 2000%?
    2. What is the future of infographics in terms of SEO?

    I'd like to hear your thoughts.

    • NK

      Nadya Khoja

      about 6 hours ago #

      Hi Vijay! Thanks for asking :)

      To answer your first question, I'm going to summarize the same thing I said to Amanda from Orbit Media, which is that we identified a channel that was working and we doubled down on it.

      • NK

        Nadya Khoja

        about 6 hours ago #

        And to reply to your second question, as I mentioned above with Brittany and Susan- since Google is really focusing a lot more on user experience and changing up the way their image search functions- I think the use of infographics in marketing and SEO specifically has a lot more potential.

        They aren't only tools for engaging audiences anymore, or as a form of gated content for lead gen. Placing more focus into optimizing your infographics to rank in image results can drive valuable traffic.

        We tested this on an article we did where we redesigned popular movie posters. By spending some time on optimizing and promoting the images within that piece, we saw our designs climbing up the ranks in Google image search for competitive and high volume keywords like "movie poster".

        For some keywords where we have images ranking we drive as much as 5k unique visits a month from one visual in image search results to the specific article where that infographic is featured.

        So that's where I think the future of infographics in SEO is headed. Hope that helps!

  • DA

    Dee Anyaegbunam

    about 6 hours ago #

    Hi Nadya, everyone seems to be talking about chatbots, AI, and interactive video. Are these fads in content marketing? Or you think they are here to stay?

  • PV

    Philip Verghese

    about 5 hours ago #

    Hi Nadya, Greetings from India. So glad to be part of this AMA with you. :-)
    Though I received your email on time, I think I am a bit late here.
    I have a small question for you. Is visual media is the key here, I mean the future of online marketing and other activities?
    I think and believe that as the age-old saying goes: visual images can speak volumes, is that the reason why you and your team putting more time on Infographics? Would like to know the future of Infographic in SEO and other online activities. Thanks.

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