Today, we’re excited to share upcoming improvements for Verblio (formerly BlogMutt). There’s a lot going on here, but stay with us—these changes will impact the price you pay and the way you interact with our system—but they will also improve your Verblio experience.
Verblio was founded seven years ago. To put this in perspective, when Verblio was founded, content marketing was in its infancy: quantity ruled over quality and competition was practically non-existent. We offered just one product: one 250-word blog post delivered once per week. An enormous amount has changed since then, both in digital marketing and at Verblio.
One thing that’s become truer over time: “Creating content is the hardest part of inbound,” said Angela DeFranco at HubSpot. Between topic ideation, managing writers, editing, publishing, and creating content is hard. Because of this, creating content often falls to the bottom of our to-do lists. At Verbio, our goal remains to help you create content that generates more traffic, more leads, and more customers for your business or your clients, and to do so in a way that makes us a seamless and powerful extension of your internal team.
You’ll see upcoming improvements outlined below happening on January 3rd, and we’ll be continuing to make improvements and adding new, exciting services throughout 2018.
Content Marketing Today & Tomorrow
To ensure our products are helping customers create truly great content, we spend a lot of time learning and thinking about the current state of content marketing, and where it’s headed.
You can read about this in more detail here, but here’s a summary.
- Content marketing continues to be one of the most effective ways to acquire and engage new customers. Study after study shows that leads and customers delivered via SEO and content are among the most cost effective and highest quality.
- The quality of that content is more important than ever. When we first started, proverbial ‘words on digital paper’ were enough. In today’s competitive landscape, businesses need quality content to stand out.
- Outstanding content starts with great writing. And there’s a formula for finding and working with great writers for content marketing.
- Even small marketing teams can leverage cutting-edge SEO and content strategies. Content creation is hard, but anyone who can solve that can utilize cutting-edge content marketing and SEO. We wrote about one strategy to get you started here.
- To remain competitive, marketing agencies and businesses need to embrace outsourcing in marketing. Sure, this is a bit self-serving, but we’ve heard from enough experts to be confident. To remain flexible, achieve scale, and utilize specialized skill sets most effectively, outsourcing needs to be part of the way you execute, and you need to figure out how to do it seamlessly.
Upcoming Improvements, and Why They Matter to You
Based on our team’s deep knowledge of content marketing, and on countless discussions with our customers over the past year, we have already been making upcoming improvements. These changes are being made to our product for better support for the needs of our customers. Also, to make content marketing more attainable and accessible. Over the next six months, you’ll see us put the pedal down to help you get more from your content marketing with upcoming improvements.
Verblio has always been a great way to get content in a flexible, scalable way. As content marketing continues to evolve, we’re focused on making it easier to get great content, increasing the quality of content, adding new content types & lengths, further improving the speed at which we deliver content, and providing tools that ensure your content works harder for you.
In short, we’re making changes that make it easier for you to create high-quality content consistently. If you’re a marketing agency, we’re also making content creation easier at scale and across diverse industries.
Here’s our in-depth guide to the changes and improvements we’ll be making. We’ve grouped changes into sections (Click a link to jump to a section):
- New content lengths
- New pricing and payment options
- New content types
- Quality, speed, and writer communication improvements
- Timing changes for interaction with writers
- Credit expiration
- Content that works harder, made easier – the new Verblio platform and additional services
If you have questions about all of this, please reach out—we’re here to help!
Our new word lengths are longer than previous lengths to match expert recommendations. We’re also providing increased flexibility if these lengths don’t meet your needs—just customize.
Our new word lengths are: 300+ words / 600+ words / 1,000+ words / 1,500+ words / 2,000+ words
Our new minimum of 300 words is based both on expert feedback that this is the new minimum for effective content and because our average word-length for this product is over 300 words anyway, so we want to be fair to the writers for the work they’re already doing. If you’re currently on a 250-word plan, you’ll be upgraded to a 300-word plan on January 3rd.
The other increased lengths were also based on aligning word-lengths with expert recommendations and creating a more logical progression of word-lengths. If you’re currently on a 900-word plan, you’ll be upgraded to 1,000 words, and 1,200 to 1,500, on January 3rd.
Custom word-lengths. Writing is a deeply personal affair, and we recognize that different businesses and clients have different requirements for length. So, have a client that needs 550 or 750 word posts? You got it. Loved our 1,200-word length and want to stick with it? You can use custom word-lengths to switch back.
New pricing. To support our efforts to continually improve the service and bring in great writers, we’re also increasing the price of our content. On January 3rd, 2018, our new plans will be: 300+ words: $29.95 each, 600+ words: $59.95, 1,000+ words: $99.95, 1,500+ words: $179.95, and a 2,000+ word piece of pillar content or e-book for $249.95. You will be billed at the new price for your first complete billing cycle that begins after January 3rd.
However, you can also lock in your existing price and get an additional 2 months free when you switch to an annual plan before the new year.
PayPal. As of today, you can now pay with PayPal.
Savings with annual pricing. Any time you’re ready to switch to paying annually, you’ll get 2 months free.
A new, long-form content offering. Many of our customers have asked our team how they can use Verblio to create e-books, whitepapers, and lately, pillar content for HubSpot’s topic cluster SEO strategy. With this new option, our team will hand-select a writer to produce this content for you and will work with you to ensure you’re getting the content you need.
We have clients who are already using Verblio to get newsletter content, emails, product descriptions, posts for social media, and more. Throughout 2018, you’ll see the formal addition of new content types to make this process even easier.
Throughout 2018, we’ll be rolling out updates to the platform and allowing you to choose the types of writers that will make your content even more powerful.
Subject matter and local expert writers. Better writer matching will help us connect you with writers who are subject-matter experts or have local knowledge to create more authentic writing for your business or client.
Control of writer expertise and certification. Looking to have our expert-level writers create 300-word posts for you? Need a writer with a deep understanding of SEO to write all of your posts? We’ll be adding controls to help you dial in your Verblio writer experience with more precision.
Additional quality initiatives. We’ll be adding additional controls to ensure that our elite writers are at the top of their game, collecting new information to help us better match you with the best writers for your industry, and using customer feedback to optimize our crowd of writers.
Speed. This isn’t one of the benefits of Verblio we talk about much, but we recently ran the numbers and most new customers get their first post within 24 hours of putting up a topic, and continue to enjoy rapidly delivered blog posts thereafter. We’re making further changes to support the delivery of quality content, fast.
Communication with writers. As we expand to longer-form content and new content types, communication with writers becomes more important. We’ll be adding new ways for our customers to communicate and work more closely with writers.
One of our core beliefs at Verblio is that to create great content for our customers, we need to build a system that is reliable and effective for customers, while also being fair and rewarding for writers. We also understand that it’s easy to let content marketing slip to the bottom of your to-do list, but many customers don’t realize our writers don’t get paid until a post is accepted. Under the current system, a writer can write a post that sits in a customer queue for months. The writer has done work, but is unsure if a post will ever be accepted. That writer might have great content that’s hasn’t yet gotten published to start working hard for your business.
In service of this core belief in both consistency and fairness to writers, we’re making some upcoming improvements to the mechanics of our platform that are designed to prevent you from falling behind in putting out consistent content, while also keeping our writers happier and putting their all into the content they write.
Time limit for post feedback. When you receive content for a topic you requested, you will have 30 days (about 400% longer than industry averages) to decide whether that content is right for you. If it’s not quite there, you can still request edits (resetting the 30-day clock) or you can decline the content at any time to get a new submission from a different writer (also resetting the 30-day clock). If you like the content you’ve received, you can purchase the post or simply leave it in your queue and it will be delivered to you automatically after 30 days, as long as there are unused credits available on your subscription.
This change will begin to take effect in January, and we’ll send you a reminder closer-to with instructions and exactly what you’ll need to know for these upcoming imporovements.
Anyone who runs a business will know that a build-up of credits can create major financial uncertainty. While most clients use up their credits by the end of each month, we have a small number of clients who let Verblio credits accumulate, and we’ve reached a point where we need to address this.
To correct this, we’re going to give our customers six months to use up credits before they expire. We’ll always use your oldest credits first, and if you’re worried about losing credits, contact our top-notch customer support team who can help you get the content you need and understand the status of your credits. We want to emphasize that we want everyone to use their credits, and the system is designed to be as generous as possible. (We’ve also added an extra month to use your unused credits after canceling and are actively working on a pause feature.)
This change will also begin to take effect in January, and we’ll send you a reminder closer-to with instructions on exactly what you’ll need to know.
An easier-to-use & friendlier user experience. Throughout 2018 the Verblio interface will continue to be overhauled to make it more intuitive and faster to use.
Get topic ideas from our writers, for free. One of the challenges we hear frequently from our customers is: ”What should I write about next?” We realize it’s hard to consistently come up with ideas for your blog posts and content, so we’ve created a way for our writers to more effectively generate ideas for you to review and approve.
Content rating and writer management. One of the most powerful, but somewhat hidden, features of Verblio is that the system ‘learns’ over time when you give feedback, edits, and choose writers you do or don’t want to work with. In just a few days, these controls will be front and center.
Advanced SEO options. With so many of our clients using Verblio content to drive SEO results, we’ve added tools on each individual topic that make it easier for you to tell our writers how they should write for SEO.
Make your content work harder with our optimization services. We’ll add a copyrights-secured stock photo to your posts, or optimize it for SEO and publishing within your blogging platform. If you haven’t seen our new pricing for +Photo and +Optimize, it now starts at just $9.95 and $19.95 for shorter posts. Add these services from your dashboard by clicking More, Change Plans, then scrolling to Step 3.
Let us manage Verblio for you. If you’re short on time, our Verblio Complete offering changes Verblio from a self-service platform to a fully-managed service. You’ll get an Inbound-Certified Content Strategist to help drive your content strategy and use Verblio on your behalf to execute on it. Verblio Complete is now out of beta, and you can learn more here or by contacting our sales team for upcoming improvements.
Here’s to the Future of Your Content
That was a lot. Thanks for sticking with us about our upcoming improvements. We can’t tell you how excited the team at Verblio HQ is to deliver on the future of Verblio, and to power outstanding content marketing that aligns with your vision and voice of your business or your clients.
Again, you’ll see the first of these changes at the beginning of the new year, and additional upcoming improvements and services throughout 2018.
Stay tuned. We’ve got much more on the way, all in service of helping you create better content.
Again, if you have questions, please reach out! We’re here to help!