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Content Marketing and Social Media – JUST START!

I listened to a very informative webinar on content marketing from Curata. They had recognized marketers talk about their strategies and experience. I use many of these strategies in my work with you, so it was (1) good to validate my thoughts from recognized experts and (2) the organization of the webinar led to taking notes to share with you!

Point 1: Just Start

I know its hard to get started with content marketing. And I think many of us think “content marketing” is a data sheet or a white paper, but it’s more than that. It’s every touch you have to your audience with the written word. (I will exclude web content from this definition just for simplicity in this article.)

It’s easy to start if you take a step approach into it:

1: “Micro Blogging”: Another way of saying you are posting to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+. I do this with many of you – promoting your original content, finding 3rd party content to share, and re-sharing other social media posts.

2: Blog: This is the core activity in your content and social media strategy. It shows your expertise, it helps the audience know who you are, it’s interesting content. With some of you we are blogging. Many of you, we are not. For those that are not blogging – we really need to start!

First, blogs do not need to be long. They can be if the content warrants it, but 400 – 500 words is a nice blog. 

Second, we want to focus on a topic. It’s ideal if it’s a topic that your competitors are not talking about, but it’s not mandatory. Whatever the topic, own it! Put your unique spin on it!

Third, you don’t have to write all of them yourself. Take some content from something else you have written and use that as a blog. Give your ideas to your marketing person and have them write 400 words for you. And definitely distribute the blogging authors throughout the organization – it shows that you have a lot of smart people on your team.

3: “Curated Content”: This is another word for “3rd party content” that I talk about. Share content that is relevant to your area of expertise. You are trying to show that you are the expert in <insert your market, business, and/or product here>. That is why with all of you we have keywords I search on to find content that is relevant to your business and show that you understand the market.

4: “Pick One Piece of Content”: This was an interesting discussion and a way to share more focused content with your audience. Take one piece of content that the audience has reacted favorably to. Break up that content piece into smaller pieces and share. The smaller piece can be a picture from that content piece or a quote. Or as I mentioned in the Blog section above, you can share portions of the full content piece that can stand alone. This is truly getting the full use out of one piece of content.

Addendum to the “One Piece of Content”. If you have a content piece that did really well when you shared it, think of ways to repurpose it. Maybe it can be a blog, a PowerPoint, a webinar, or an infographic. Take the same information and present it in different ways and re-share. The human brain will hear the concept over and over from you and begin to associate that concept with you. Brilliant!

5: eBooks, White Papers, and Infographics: This is what takes time! These all take longer to produce, but there is a lot of use you can get out of this one content piece. See above.

Point 2: To use or not to use gated content: This was an interesting question. Do we make someone enter their email address and if we do does it turn them off? The Answer:

  • The goal of marketing is to provide leads. We get leads from many places and one is content that requires an email address to access it. So – yes to gated content.
  • But also slice up the content into smaller pieces and provide it to your audience outside the gate. Promote the full piece behind the gate.

Point 3: How much 3rd party versus original? I have shared with you my philosophy – 70% 3rd party, 30% original. On the webinar, they said 65% 3rd party, 25% original, and 10% paid or published. 

Point 4: This is not hard. It’s just a little up front planning. You can do it!

Point 5: Always be yourself and genuine. It’s your voice the audience wants to hear and it’s way easier to talk in your real voice that a fake voice.

I hope you enjoyed this and found something that can help you just get started!

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About the author: Kim McMahon has done sales and marketing for more years than she cares to count. She writes frequently on marketing, life, the world and how they sometimes all come together.