How does it work?
Tuts+ partners with brands to create and promote educational content in the areas of Web and Mobile App Development (Code.tutsplus.com), WebDesign, Design, and Photography. There is an editorial review process – the sponsor, product and proposed topic must be relevant, high quality and appropriate for the audience, and original and exclusive to Tuts+
Overall, a good sponsored content program must be:
• Educational for the readers, and marked as sponsored content
• Consistent with the tone and style of the site
• Turnkey content creation process for the marketer
• Measurable ROI with a strong call to action and engagement metrics
What does it look like, and what are some good topics/examples?
Good sponsored content topics are educational in nature and not a straight sales pitch. They often show how to set up/use your product effectively, often in terms of a specific project outcome. A good strategy is often an overview/101 tutorial drawing people in on the overall problem/market, and then additional tutorials drilling down on specific use cases, features, or point products. Good tutorials show a product in action helping to build or create something or solve a problem.
With Tuts+, sponsored content can be either:
1. Tutorials – typically written with Screenshots, although sometimes video. Here are some examples:
New Relic: Series of 13 examples on Performance Monitoring of Web and Mobile Apps
Atlassian/BitBucket: Using Pull Requests as Code Reviews
Dolby: 3 Part Series on Dolby’s Mobile API
Wacom: How to Design a Weathered Illustrative Logo Set in Adobe Illustrator (video)
Who produces it?
Tuts+ editors spearhead the collaboration process to agree on topic and outline. A Tuts+ editor or third party author is typically contracted as part of the program and produces the content. If the vendor has the ability to create content to a suitable standard and can adhere to Tuts+ style guides that is also an option.
How is it promoted? How long do the tutorials stay live?
Tutorials stay live as long as they are relevant, often driving significant traffic for years. Each tutorial is published on Tuts+ and promoted out via social media (Twitter/Facebook/Google+), email newsletter, and RSS.
Codetuts+ for example has 138K Twitter followers and 102K Facebook fans.
Can I include a special offer or other call to action?
Yes, it’s best practice to include a backlink or two in the tutorials driving people to your site to learn more, take advantage of a discount or free trial, etc. Programs often tie in banner ads, newsletters or sponsored social media to drive more direct response.
How do we measure success?
Success metrics for sponsored content include:
Unique visitors to tutorials
Time spent (engagement)
Social Shares and conversation
Comments on page
CTR on banner ads and newsletters
Other traffic and links back to your site and offers – there you can of course measure new signups, trials, purchases, opt-ins, leads, etc.
Can I use this content on my site?
You can link to it, share it, promote it, etc. There is also an option to turn a written tutorial into a co-branded PDF for use in lead nurturing/email marketing programs.
Have other questions or want to get started? Email me – Jeremy (@) techcrowds.com