If content is king, then marketing is queen. Marketing is what moves your content forward and gives it renewed life with every new platform it reaches and audience it captures. So how do you market your content? Content marketing is all about creating a content framework. It’s about determining the core of your content, how it’s created and then how it’s marketed. It’s about identifying the best platforms to reach out with, and how you’re going to remold your content along the way so that it’s fresh and dynamic.
Building a Content Framework
All your content should revolve around one central theme, with several sub-themes. Your content should never just be a regurgitation of news or facts, because anyone can do that. Rather, it should offer compelling analysis, forecast trends, even tackle a controversial topic…anything to set you apart from the flock.
The key is to think like your reader. Think of what information they want (you can even send out polls and surveys, or source topics through social media interaction), and how they could use (and share) the information.
Compelling content needs to have a voice, and that voice must fit with Tetris-like precision inside your website. It should be visually engaging like entertainment media (as any audience now demands to be entertained even when schooled) but it should be as easily accessible and pragmatically filed like you’d expect of any file within a library. Your content framework starts with your own network, and it should be both aesthetic and functional. Herein you need to employ a great creative copywriter that knows SEO and a web-design/SEO guru that can position the content for maximum exposure.
Going beyond just web articles and blog posts, content can also take the form of marketing materials through white papers, data sheets, case studies, power points, podcasts and more. This type of content gets treated like a tool and has a lot of marketing power over time since it gets used and shared by data seekers.
Remember that no matter what the content type might be, a new media savvy audience demands to be dazzled, so make sure you include graphics, images/photos, audio and video.
Creating Your Content Framework across a New Media Landscape
Marketing, Public Relations and Sales were previously independent departments with separate goals and strategies. With the advent of digital media and the fact that even your grandmother can navigate new media, all those lines have been blurred. You can untangle the new media mess by working backwards.
The mistake a lot of companies make is trying to reach out across as many major social media platforms as possible. This just doesn’t work. It looks amateur and it frustrates the executive who doesn’t get the results s/he demands. Instead of launching an all-out social media blitz, try this instead…
Choose the best outlets to establish a presence on. Your best bet is Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube. Let people know you’re smart enough to be there and have some activity. Once that’s done, work backwards by creating a content framework based on the content rather than the outlet.
Whether it’s a blog entry, a video, a contest or a free resource, think of what type of audience it’s best suited for and which platform that audience tends to flock to. If it’s a free resource like a 52 page white paper, then Scribd, LinkedIn and email campaigns are the best way to get the word out; and the latter two should have an optimized landing page created for the announcement. If it’s a pulling-at-the-heartstrings story, then use Facebook and Twitter, maybe even YouTube. If the goal is to create a business persona, strengthen your bond with your audience, then go with short and sweet YouTube videos.