Creating great content takes time. It also takes a considerable amount of investment, both financial and emotional. We all care about our content, and we're all really proud when it's finished. But we also all share that deflating feeling: after spending weeks on creating something that is visually stunning, and crammed with authoritative information, you post it, and then you wait. One view, maybe five. And then nothing.
But, this only happens when we focus on simply creating content, and not on promoting it. When you've created your content, the work does not stop there. You have to work hard to make sure that the right people see it. In this blog post we're going to present our 3 step plan to increase your content marketing reach.
STEP ONE: Social Media
I'm going to assume that by now you are already using social media to increase your content marketing reach. If you're not, then I would advise that you read this before going any further.
So, using social media is all fine and well. What you're going to learn now is how to use it correctly in order to increase your content marketing reach! For the purposes of this article, I'm mainly going to focus on Facebook and Twitter.
Rule One: Treat them differently
Twitter is a lot more fast-paced than Facebook. Studies have found that a Facebook post has a lifespan of 3 hours, on average, but Twitter can be as little as minutes, depending on how many other people your followers are following.
With this in mind, we would recommend that you promote your content once a day on Facebook (so one post per day, per content; not one post per day, period). For Twitter, you should look to post around three or four times per day, every couple of hours. But make sure you aren't just copying and pasting, use different phrases, and different hashtags to find out which works best.
Rule Two: No selling!
This is a short and simple rule. Social media is NOT a place to sell, it's a place to build relationships with existing and potential customers. Showing a more personal side to your brand, and actually interacting with your customers will give you the edge over your competitors because it shows that you care and that you are trustworthy.
Rule Three: Copy what works
I did a simple search and found these statistics:
- 68% of people are likely to buy a product recommended by a friend on Facebook
- Photos on Facebook generate 53% more likes than the average post
- The most common reason for a Facebook user to unlike a brand is 'uninteresting posts' at 32%
From these statistics it's clear that to keep your brand popular on Facebook you should encourage customers to give reviews; post images regularly; and, keep your posts interesting. There are statistics on lots of different aspects of Facebook and Twitter, and if you take a few minutes out to do a little research then your social media posts will be more engaging, and as a result, your content marketing will reach further.
STEP TWO: Outreach
If you're not sure on what outreach actually means, it's basically the process of getting the industry leaders within your niche to post your content on their blog or website so that you will get more exposure, and more backlinks. Easier said than done, I know.
So, how is it done?
Well, first you have to find the blogs that are receiving the most traffic within your industry. You can do this by a detailed search on a search engine, or by using a website like Alltop, which is a collection of the highest performing blogs online.
So, once you've found a couple of blogs that are similar to yours but receive much more traffic, you can begin the outreach process, right? Not quite.
First, you have to show them that you are interested. Maybe post a few positive comments on their blog, ask an insightful question about their infographic. Maybe even share their content on your own blog. All of this will just make sure that you're less of a stranger when you contact them in the future.
Okay, so you want them to share your content, but the key is NOT to ask them for it. At first you should just send polite emails, like so:
Really love your post on [TOPIC]. I actually wrote something similar last week [LINK].
If you have any constructive criticism, I'd be happy to hear it! :)
I know you're interested in [TOPIC]. So, I wanted to give you the first look at the post I'm putting live next week [LINK].
Both of the examples above focus plainly on massaging the ego of your contact, and not asking them to boost your content. Once you have built some base contact with them you can then begin to ask if they will feature your content on their site. The reason for building a friendship with them first is to make yourself stand out amongst the thousands of other outreach-hopefuls that email them each day.
STEP THREE: Get Outside the Box
It's not enough to just think outside the box anymore, everyone's doing that. You need to literally climb out of the box and make sure that you are seen by everyone, everywhere.
We've talked about social media as one of the main steps towards increasing your content marketing reach, but that doesn't mean you should only post on social media! Sure, websites like Twitter and Facebook have billions of users, but that also means there's a lot of noise for you to compete with.
So you need to branch out. There are lots of other sites that you can post your content on. And, a lot of them are much more targeted than the big social media giants, giving your content a better chance of being seen.
With more than 30 million users, you should definitely not overlook StumbleUpon. StumbleUpon is like a search engine that only displays content to it's users. And, content is organised based on the users interests so it usually finds the right people.
Reddit is a popular social news platform that allows users to share content with one another. Users are encouraged to vote on content so useful and appealing content is rewarded, and spammy posts are caught out quickly. Sub-Reddits are a great way to create a mini community for your business and gives you another avenue to communicate with your customers, and show off that human side of your brand.
So, that was our 3 step plan to help you increase your content marketing reach! If you liked that post, why not check out last week's article: 7 Powerful Stats That'll Make You Better at Content Marketing.