28 March 2016
Unless you‘ve been living on another planet, you‘ve heard or read that ‘content marketing‘ works.
Wikipedia defines content marketing as, ‘any marketing that involves the creation and sharing of media and publishing content in order to acquire and retain customers.‘
So, how do you go about it?
You can hire a content marketing company (expensive), or you can market yourself and your business. Online marketing has changed over the past 15 years. The long-form sales letter has gone the way of the dinosaur, but there are still plenty of hacks out there selling content stuffed with keywords ‘" search engine spider food.
As a business owner, you have a story to tell and you‘re the best one to tell it. You know the benefits, the values, the dedication and drive you bring to every project, every sale.
Now, tell the world with these simple tips to market your content.
- Create accounts on content syndication sites. There are plenty of websites looking for your well-developed content. There are industry-specific sites, blogs and forums looking for well-written content about the latest industry news.For example, www.socialmediatoday.com is a great place to post your thoughts on the use of social media, and tips to improve readers‘ business performance.
If you‘re in the venture capital business segment, check out
www.myventurepad.com ‘" an industry specific site for venture capitalists, small business owners, and self-directed investors looking for opportunities to grow wealth.
There are general content syndication sites like
www.ezine.com and www.goarticles.com. You can post content that is available for download by other site owners who must provide a link back to the website you designate. So, for example, if you write a piece on how to conduct a job search and post it on ezine.com, it may be downloaded to dozens (hundreds) of websites, each providing an in-bound link to your website.
You build credibility as an authority, you spread your name around, and before long you are a major influencer in your business sphere, directing the conversation, not simply listening passively. You become a player in your business arena.
- Be generous with your knowledge and experience. Answer questions on Yahoo‘s Q & A section. Join relevant groups on LinkedIn ‘" groups with active discussion boards that welcome your advice.By sharing experiences, good and bad, you establish yourself as a straight-up authority with the years of experience to prove it. Sharing what you know establishes your authority.
- Pump up your LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn is more than a business networking site. Customers and would be customers read individual profiles. Major, global companies advertise job openings. Employers check you out there. Be sure to list your achievements, your biggest business successes, and publish a few short, helpful pieces to demonstrate your writing and critical thinking skills.
- You need a blog. Creating a blog using Google‘s Blogger or the WordPress blog platform is easy. Use templates to create an attractive outlet for your content, and add to your blog regularly.Be sure to Tweet on Twitter throughout the days that you put up new blog posts. If the content is helpful, it won‘t take long to build a following ‘" subscribers waiting for your next blog post.Also, once your blog is up and running, and you have some articles in place, create an account on technorati ‘" the search engine for blogs. Choose keywords associated with your area of expertise and see more blog traffic delivered by a search engine designed to crawl the blog band.
- Guest post. You can demonstrate your business acumen by posting to other blogs, and having industry experts post to your blog. Over time, you‘ll start to see a growing Internet presence as your name and your work are indexed. In just a few months of guest posting you can develop a reputation as an authority ‘" and that generates more leads, and more highly qualified leads, at that.
- Create profiles on quality job boards. Job boards, like Monster.com, Careerbuilder.com, Indeed.com, and Simplyhired.com are great websites to post your content, even if you aren‘t looking for a full-time job. Human resources professionals visit these sites regularly, recording contact information of well-represented prospects.You may not be looking for a new position today, but getting your content and your name out there today will enable you to build a more expansive Internet presence if you do start looking for a new job.
- Use the expertise of others in your business sphere. Interview the movers in your business realm ‘" the men and women known for their expertise, insight, and practical advice. Often, on the Internet, you‘re judged by the company you keep.Stick with top-tier experts, quote them, interview them, spread their names around. It helps the experts and makes you an expert by association.
- Plan your content marketing strategy. If you simply throw reams of content out there on the Internet, some may stick, some may not. To effectively disseminate content and create a reputation, develop a strategy focusing, first, on content you‘ve already written or content that can be developed quickly.The Internet gobbles up content so lots of blog administrators and website owners are looking for good content that helps them and helps you.
In the meantime…
- Create a range of content samples. A tri-fold brochure, a white paper, a website home page, a business plan ‘" use your spare time to flesh out the content in your portfolio. Refine what you have until it‘s letter-perfect.
- Write a ‘how-to‘ guide. This can actually generate revenue ‘" a good thing.
You can post to popular sites like
dmoz.org, and even self-publish on Amazon.com. You may not have a best seller on your hands, but you will sell some books, and you will be a published content marketer.
Content marketing is a great way to build a reputation as an industry insider ‘" even an industry leader who has answers to prospects‘ questions. So, get the word out in writing and start developing your reputation for quality and for results.