How to Use Content Marketing Effectively

April 9, 2014 | 2,342 views

Content Marketing

Content Marketing

For many entrepreneurs, marketing is just one of many tasks they take on. The problem is: many of them don’t use it effectively. Take content marketing. How regularly are you writing blog content or whitepapers? How are you amplifying your content on social media and other channels?


Don’t have the answers? This post will help.


First, Understand Your Strategy

Before you even lift a finger to write any content, you need to have a solid understanding of what your strategy is. For most, it’s to educate their audience and hopefully reach new contacts who will turn into customers.


But how will you convert a blog reader into a customer? This should be part of your strategy. Maybe you have an email signup on the sidebar, or a button for a free consultation.


And also part of your strategy is: who are you trying to reach? It’s imperative that you zero in on your audience and craft content to what they’re interested in.


Now, the Media

Blogs are the obvious superstar of content marketing, but there are plenty of other options you can (and should) use as well:


● Whitepapers or ebooks
● Press releases
● Email


Rather than write and release these willy-nilly, consider a campaign or theme for each. So, for ScheduleBase, I might suggest creating content around hiring your first employee. Here’s what it would look like across the board:


● Blog post: Are You Ready to Hire Your First Employee?
● Whitepaper: The Small Business Guide to Hiring Your First Employee
● Press Release: announces publication of the whitepaper
● Email: encourages subscribers to download the whitepaper


You see how all of these tie into one another? Your blog post can mention the whitepaper, as should the press release and email. Your content all targets one pain point that your customers have, and addresses it on varying levels.


Don’t Forget to Spread the Word

A blog post is only as good as the number of people who read it. And no, they won’t magically find it on their own; it’s up to you to amplify it.


Start on social media. You’ve already got followers on Twitter, Facebook, Google +, LinkedIn, et cetera, so share your content with them. And don’t just do it once; schedule several updates over the coming weeks, each written differently, to maximize the number of people who see the update and click to read your content.


You can set up tools like Twitterfeed so that each time a new post publishes to your blog, it’s automatically sent to Twitter. You can schedule tweets/updates in advance on HootSuite. And you can get more followers by posting your links on BizSugar and Social Buzz Club. The more people that click your links now, the more steady readers you’ll attract long-term.


A Final Note

I’ll end by saying: pay attention to results. You can glean a lot from your analytics about what types of content resonate with people and which fall flat. Write more of what works, and avoid the rest.


And if it’s still too much for you, hire a professional marketer or agency. Marketing isn’t an area you want to do a poor job, or to skimp on.

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