Build brand authority and awareness in your industry online and over social media, by connecting and collaborating with experts. Creating an expert roundup is not a new tactic but it still works like a charm.
An expert roundup is an article that consists of contributions from notable niche influencers who were invited to provide short answers to one or more questions.
By associating your brand with a notable industry expert, you are able to:
- Create a better-researched guide
- Refer to a well-known expert in your social media updates and email outreach (and thus increase your social media engagement)
- Get links from your experts/contributors
Generally, expert roundup can boost both your SEO and social media efforts bridging the gap between those marketing channels.
Here’s how to put together a successful and sharable expert roundup:
1. Pick a Topic That Can Rank
Don’t forget to always use keyword research tools when coming up with your expert roundup question: The goal is to get that resource to rank high in Google.
Once your article shows up for a high-volume search query, it will continue bringing steady traffic on auto-pilot without you having to do anything.
So the first step to any content-based campaign is to always start with keyword research. It shows you the demand for any topic and helps you with driving traffic over time. It is the foundation of any article’s success.
At this point, any of your current keyword research tools would do. I find it easiest to rely on a “keyword difficulty” metric inside Serpstat, Ahrefs, or SEMrush. Simply put, keyword difficulty reflects how difficult it would be to rank for a particular query on the first page of Google.
Here’s I am using Serpstat filters to see search queries with a lower search difficulty:
Generally, the lower the keyword difficulty and the higher the search volume, the higher the traffic you can expect after the piece is live.
Additionally, I usually do brief question research to find popular questions around the query I found. Text Optimizer is the best tool for providing a quick list of questions people ask when searching for any query:
TextOptimizer’s question research helps find a popular question to collect answers from your experts.
2. Find & Approach Your Experts
The next step is identifying niche experts who would be willing to both:
- Provide in-depth answers to your question
- Engage with you after the article is published helping you spread the word.
I use a combination of tools and tricks to find niche experts to collaborate with, including:
- Those people who often interact with me or my brand by commenting, retweeting, liking, etc. my social media updates.
- Niche influencers who actively participate in niche Twitter chats
- Experts who often contribute to other blogs or roundups I was able to find using Buzzsumo
I am not using any specific emailing solution to reach out and monitor responses. I simply use my Gmail. But I do set up a new form in Google docs to make it easier for experts to contribute.
Here’s how to set up and share a Google form to collect responses to your expert roundup:
3. Put Your Expert Roundup Together
When you collect enough answers to turn into an article, consider how you are going to pay it out:
Structure Your Expert Round-up for Better Readability
Simply listing your experts and what they had to say is not the most effective way to structure your article. This format makes it hard for a reader to get the actual gist of the article.
And frankly speaking, this basic type of expert roundup is getting overused.
I suggest identifying a key takeaway from each contribution and use it as a subheading for each section. This makes your roundup so much more reader-friendly and also opens up some long-tail ranking opportunities.
Here’s a good example of what I am talking about:
This link building roundup is another great idea of an effective structure. Notice how each subhead is an actual tip provided by an expert:
Prepare It for Sharing
The key to a successful expert roundup is social media tagging. The more tweets there will be tagging one or more of your experts, the more often they will be there to help spread the word by liking and retweeting those tweets.
Everyone likes meaningful interactions.
I suggest picking the best quotes from each contribution and allow your readers to tweet them. These are called “tweetable quotes” and in the new WordPress editor called Gutenberg, you can add a special block to create those:
Don’t forget to tag each contributor in every click-to-tweet quote you create.
4. Create More Assets to Share
If you really want to make it right, turn each roundup article into a campaign rather than one article. The more work you put into creating an article, the more your contributors will be impressed. This will bring more links and shares.
One idea is to put together a video containing your experts’ quotes. This will make your article more sharable and create an additional asset for your YouTube channel. An easy tool to do that is InVideo which automates video creation and lets you easily turn text into slideshow-style video.
- Use the structure you created in step #3
- Copy-paste it into InVideo
- Upload your experts’ photos to personalize it better
- Select a template and an audio track. You are done!
You can see lots of examples of videos you can create here.
Another cool idea is to create a featured image for each featured expert and use those images to publicize your article later. You can also email those images to your contributors to prompt them to share the article more.
You can create these visual quotes using Mavsocial’s built-in photo editor:
5. Publish and Share
If you “seed” your asset the right away, you’ll see many people discover it.
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Use Alter to Engage Those Readers
Finally, those social media readers are hard to keep on your site for more than a few seconds.
To prevent those visitors from leaving promptly, try using Alter which is a content recommendation engine that helps keep your site visitors reading your site:
There are more tools to engage your readers and keep them on your site, so keep experimenting!
Email Your Contributors to Get Their Help Spreading the Word
Finally, you have those influencers collaborating with you on creating that content. Now don’t forget to congratulate them on going live and inviting them to spread a word.
One of the most impressive emails I’ve received as a contributor was this nice notice inviting me to both share and vote for the piece on third-party platforms:
I think that’s a great template to use: It’s short, polite and highly actionable.
Summary and Takeaways
- When used correctly, expert roundups can work well for increasing your brand’s exposure and social media engagement as you are able to tap into your contributors’ micro-communities and authority
- Start by finding a topic that has the potential to bring you Google rankings as well as by identifying interesting questions
- Use a variety of tools to find niche influencers that like collaborating with blogs and brands, as well as actively interact on social media
- Structure the roundup to highlight takeaways to make it a more useful and engaging reading
- Create tweetable quotes for your readers to tag your contributors and get them to promote your content on a regular basis
- Email all your contributors to invite them to help you promote the piece
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