Great content rarely markets itself. To get it in front of your target audience you need to implement a content promotion strategy. Here are some ideas to get you started.
Let’s see if this sounds familiar. You are the content writer for your company. You started strong, writing blog post after blog post, often staying up late and burning midnight oil. But after a while, your traffic data starts waning your excitement off.
It seems that you just can’t get anyone to read what you write.
But wouldn’t it be great if whatever you post would immediately reach your target audience? Sadly, in a world of content overabundance, this won’t happen without any content promotion.
You see, creating content is just half of the story. No matter how great your blog posts, videos, graphics or other content types might be, there is just too much of content out there for you to break through.
For that to happen you need to implement and deliver a content promotion strategy.
There is a number of ways you can promote your content. Some offer almost instantaneous results, while with others you may have to wait for traffic to show up. Nonetheless, you should try to implement all of them in your strategy.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is a long terms strategy of optimising content to be found in search engines. By following certain practices you can ensure the content appears in search results when a reader searches for specific keyphrases your content relates to.
There is a wealth of advice around the web on optimising your content for search discovery. Resources I would recommend include: Content Marketing Institute’s Introduction to Content Optimization for Beginners or the Copybogger’s SEO Copywriting ebook (free).
2. Social Media
Social Media on the other hand offers a more instantaneous results. The advantage of using social media is that you first and foremost promote your content to people who already follow your company.
There are number of social networks on which your company could be engaging with its audience. Each of them offers distinct opportunities for content promotion.
Twitter, given its very conversational and instant nature is ideal for publishing content multiple times, reminding users about it over the course of days and months. Because content posted on Twitter changes so fast, its audience doesn’t mind if you repost your one more than once, as long as this happens in intervals of course.
In his advanced content marketing guide, Neil Patel recommends tweeting about your blog post even up to three times on the publication day. he then recommends to wane the frequency of posting on any subsequent days.
When posting to Twitter, experiment with different messages promoting your content. Start off with a title but consider to also post a quote from your article, make a comment about it, tell your audience what they might benefit from reading your post and so on. The more you differentiate those messages, the greater chance you have to reach different kinds of people.
In contrast, it is better if you submit your content only once on sites like Facebook and Google+, where each post stays relevant for much longer. In fact, users on those networks, might perceive multiple posting of the same content as spamming.
Both Facebook and Google+ allow you to submit your post along with an introductory comment. Use this as an opportunity to tell your followers about your content and what they might benefit from reading it.
Note: A good content promotion strategy is to include a reference to an influencer in your post. By doing so, you add authority to your content but also put it on their radar which might result in them sharing it with their followers, increasing your content’s reach.
To achieve this, make sure that you tag the influencer in your social media promotion. On Twitter, do it by including their @handle in the message. on Google+ by using +GoogleName.
Similarly you can use hashtags on all social networks to further define what your content is about. Simple preface the keyword with the # symbol to create a hashtag. If you want to find out more about them, nothing introduces them better than this introduction by Buffer.
Your company’s mailing list offers you another opportunity to promote your content. Each time you publish something new, notify your email subscribers about it. There is a number of ways you can handle this:
- If you post one to two posts a week, email your list every time you publish new content. Many email newsletter systems, like Mailchimp or Aweber offer an option to connect them with your RSS feed to send an automated new content notification every time you post.
- If you post more than twice a week, sending a weekly or monthly digest with links to latest content might be a better idea. Your company’s subscribers might feel otherwise overwhelmed by the amount of emails coming from you and quickly abandon your list.
You should also promote your content to influencers in your industry. Many bloggers or journalists for instance constantly look for new content to promote to their audiences or include in roundup posts they often run on their blogs. Therefore, you should reach out to them or other connections you have to let them know about content you publish.
You need to be smart to gain their attention though. Even though you would be promoting your content in hope for them to promote it, you should not reveal your intentions in your outreach.
You shouldn’t email anyone asking for linking or sharing your content. Rather find influencers who might be interested in what you published or have published on similar topic and notify them about your content.
TIP: Find a hook that would interest them to check your content. After all, they most likely get many content notifications like yours each day. But if for instance, they posted on the same topics as well and you are state different points, you can use that to gain their attention. Or perhaps your content is based on in-depth research you conducted or presents a completely unique take on a common industry problem. All this will offer more chances to catch the influencers attention.
When reaching out to influencers use common sense. Naturally you shouldn’t be e-mailing the same people about every content you publish. Instead, build a list of influencers and their favourite topics and only notify them when you post something that will catch their attention.
Is It All Not Tedious?
It might be. Certainly for may of us, myself included, the fun is in creating content. Without promotion however, you risk writing or developing content which not many people will see. So tedious or not, without investing this extra time in promoting, there is simply no chance for your content to achieve its objectives.