Content marketing can be time-consuming, there’s no doubt about it. But, you also know it’s also crucial for your firm’s marketing practice. So how do you rev up your company’s content marketing engine?
The CAM Foundation ranked content marketing as the most commercially important digital marketing trend by a landslide.
No other marketing strategy offers you the opportunity to truly engage with your consumers, capture leads, build long-term brand loyalty and establish yourself as a knowledge leader.
So, where do you start when you’ve let things get behind (or even if you’ve never started)?
Here are five relatively painless ways to get your content marketing engine humming along…
Maybe you’ve struggled to launch or maintain your content marketing plan because you’re unsure of what it means for your business.
Ask: What is the purpose of content marketing and what results should you expect?
Everything you do to market your business must have a purpose — whether it’s driving awareness or generating leads. Creating content is no different.
Content creation and distribution provides an opportunity to build a brand voice, interact with your consumers and “show ’em what ya got.” Ultimately, those efforts should translate into new business.
Tackle Ideas First, Write Second
A content marketing engine requires fuel to run effectively.
Rather than putting all your energy into formulating a topic and then producing the associated content, take some time to develop an editorial calendar for your firm.
Pick a moment when you feel inspired and invigorated about your business or industry. Sketch out the topics and ideas you feel passionate about when you think about your customers. If you met your ideal customer at lunch today, what would you be excited to tell them about your products or services? Jot down these topics in as much or as little detail as you feel compelled to.
Heck, if you’re really fired up, you might end up “accidentally” writing an entire post fueled by excitement alone.
Next, take a look at the calendar. What time periods, occasions and holidays are important for your business? What product or service launches are upcoming? When are the relevant conferences for your industry? What can you share with your customers that will help them during these occasions? And lastly, when are the best moments to discuss those passionate ideas you formulated above?
Once you’ve formulated a loose content marketing editorial calendar, you’ll probably find you’re much less overwhelmed by the thought of actually creating content.
Swipe, Swipe, Swipe
Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but the real purpose of a swipe file is to act as a launch pad for your creative content marketing engine. By collecting content that resonates with you or your colleagues, you’ll be building a pool of inspiration when your own creative well has run dry.
Want to write a blog post on future trends in your industry? What have your peers written on the topic? What do you think they missed or got plain wrong? What do the most-shared articles on the topic have in common? What new perspective can you provide? What type of tone and graphics best fit the topic? And, perhaps most importantly, what was audience reaction?
Once you have your swipe file, you’ll be armed with the information you need to make your content compelling and on-trend.
Everything Old Is New Again
Old content can keep the content marketing engine alive!
Have you checked your analytics on your past content lately? If not, you might be surprised to learn that a big chunk of your new visitors are coming to your site to read “old” content.
In fact, content marketing adheres to the “80/20 Rule” — 20% of your content will usually generate around 80% of the engagement results. Old content is part of your marketing portfolio, so why shouldn’t it continue to generate results if it’s good?
While that may surprise you, it’s logical — older content has had time to be read and shared more often, expanding its footprint and punching up its search ranking. Don’t think of old content as garbage, think of it as gold waiting to be mined — again.
Once or twice a year go back and update old content and its associated offers and landing pages. This will give it new life on Google, and ensure all your content is optimized to drive new business leads. Plus, updating and republishing your major “Flagship” work saves time by avoiding the need to create more and more content that essentially says the same thing.
Get Content Marketing Help
Some of the best decisions you make as a business owner involve prioritization and getting tasks that aren’t the best use of your time off your plate. At some point, you’ll realize you can’t do it all (nor should you).
If writing ad copy and landing pages isn’t your forte, farm it out. If you find the idea of creating an e-book tedious, outsource it. If you have no interest in or passion for creating a webinar, don’t. You probably started your business so that you could do what you love. Do that and get rid of the rest.
BONUS…outsourcing to a rock-solid content marketing team can significantly boost your revenue for a relatively small cost (click to learn more).
The FunnelProfit team specializes in building and running high-ROI content marketing engines for our clients. From producing tailored B2B content to distributing and engaging potential buyers, our team of experts work with you to drive your business growth. Learn more about our content marketing funnel services here >