Finally, after more than a month’s work, you’re ready to hit “submit” on your latest company blog post.
You’ve painstakingly collected the necessary stats and figures to make the piece relevant and credible. You’ve shepherded it through the editing process and approval hierarchy. There’s a clear and demonstrable value to the reader, and you’re excited to see readers engage with it.
The thing is, posting is just Step 1.
If your blog is the only place the content lives, you’re limiting its exposure to people who come across your company’s website. But if you take strategic steps to distribute valuable content to the right audience in the best format, you’ll draw more traffic to your site and establish your brand as credible—both of which ultimately drive up sales.
Here’s how to maximize the impact of the content you create:
1. Be smart about social media.
“If you build it, they will come” is well and good when you’re talking about building a magical baseball field, but you can’t just post content willy-nilly to your blog and expect your audience to show up.
You need a social strategy.
But not every social platform is one-size-fits-all, so determine what platforms make the most sense for you. If you’re a consumer-facing brand, you’ll benefit from being active on places like Instagram and Facebook. If you’re a B2B company, post on LinkedIn and Twitter. And give your long-form, thought-provoking pieces a home on social sites like Medium and Quora.
If your piece is as valuable to your audience as you think it is, their interactions with your content make it visible to your followers’ followers—exponentially expanding your network.
According to a recent study, companies currently spend 12% of their marketing budgets on social media, and this figure is projected to climb to more than 20% in the next five years. To remain competitive, you might want to consider putting a budget behind your social media strategy. You can use tools to organize your posting schedule and monitor your social media engagement, and don’t be afraid to put a boost budget behind popular posts.
Without a good social strategy, your content is only going out to the audience you’ve already built—which means you’re missing a major opportunity.
2. Put a personal touch on it.
When content comes from your team, it’s more personal—and more appealing to potential customers.
There are lots of little ways you can do this. First, you should encourage all employees—from company executives to sales reps and everyone in between—to share content on their personal accounts, in addition to posting on your company social media pages. When your individual team members share content, they’re helping build credibility in their industry by distributing to their personal network and ultimately bringing in a larger audience.
It’s also a good idea to promote and share engaging content generated by industry peers—if it’s compelling and useful, that reflects back to your company and gives you greater exposure. They may even return the favor.
Finally, encourage employees to add a company piece in their email signature. While not outright sales-y, it’s a subtle way to further position your company as an industry leader.
You already have a ton of connections at your fingertips—use them.
3. Integrate content throughout every stage of the consumer lifecycle.
Think about a typical customer service conversation.
What are the major pain points that come up during those chats? What would the client find most helpful in addressing those pain points? Go a step further. Think about how and when to use that content to show people from the get-go that you’re a credible partner.
In the sales process at Digital Press, I often come across CEOs and founders who aren’t necessarily interested in self-promotion, or who question whether or not they have enough to talk about to make them a thought leader. I explain to them that by promoting and leveraging their expertise as company leaders, they can directly impact their organization and possibly open new doors of opportunity. And I offer content that helps alleviate their concerns—usually by sending them this article as an example.
I use these conversations as a barometer, creating content to help answer their questions—it’s really nice when you have some content in your back pocket that speaks to consumer concerns.
When you go the extra mile (and, really, it doesn’t take much effort) you’re giving the client something valuable—something they didn’t even realize they needed.
4. What you’re saying is just as important as where and how you say it.
Content for content’s sake just adds more clutter to an already crowded web.
But content created with the medium in mind can make a much bigger impact. Marketing teams today have access to more customers across more platforms than ever. It’s all content, and it’s all useful somewhere, but you have to be strategic about it.
- Whitepapers and other gated materials skew more technical and are particularly useful for industry peers, who might delve through them on their lunch break, or folks a little further along in the buying process.
- Blog posts and short-form articles are great vehicles for thought-provoking concepts or interviews to offer high-level quick tips and build awareness.
- Video content, naturally, helps prospective consumers visualize how your product or service could improve their lives—you can lure audiences while they wait for the train.
- Podcasts are great when you have a charismatic spokesperson to share insightful information.
You’ve already put the time in putting together the perfect post, true to your narrative, so why stop there? With the right medium, your content’s core message can impact people at any stage of interaction, and you can help generate the largest return on investment over time.
Think of your content as an ongoing conversation. It has the potential to take on a life of its own, to help move things forward. It can change how someone views you, your company, or even your industry.
Make sure you’re giving it every opportunity to thrive.