Creating effective marketing content takes a lot of work. You have to come up with the idea, develop it, research it, cite your sources and go through countless rounds of editing with colleagues before it’s ready to produce. But then what? How will you get the most views, leads, interest and comments? It’s a mistake to think audiences will find their own way to your all-important messages. Just as important as the content itself is how you distribute it. Without a proactive content distribution plan to share and build traffic, a perfectly good article, blog or white paper will collect dust in the fast-paced realm of digital content.
Play the Social Game
Today, sharing content via social media is part of the muscle memory process of posting content. The reality is: it isn’t considered published until it’s been distributed via the big three: Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. LinkedIn, in particular, has become vital to B2B marketing campaigns with 80% of social media leads coming through the platform. LinkedIn is still the B2B platform of choice. However, Facebook and Twitter are still effective in reaching customers, prospects, employees and other audiences. Yet, simply throwing a link at your followers isn’t enough to get the clicks.
Each platform is different, and users expect a different style of messaging dependent on the site they’re frequenting. Tailor your posts to the audience and platform to actively engage them. And don’t forget about the other rising social platforms such as Instagram, Google+, Slideshare or Vimeo. Not only do these channels place your content in more locations, your outreach ratio increases. Smaller audiences who are active within niche platforms are more likely to discover your content, rather than competing with the endless stream of information located on sites such as Facebook or Twitter.
Email is still the most used tool for B2B content distribution and also ranked the most important. When compared to social media or other forms of sharing, email ranks higher. This is because it can be tailored to a carefully targeted audience rather than a sea of followers. Essentially, you’re sending out a line instead of casting a net. It’s your job to make sure you’re choosing the right bait. Savvy marketers understand that a personalized email makes a prospect or client twice as likely to click into your content.
Segmented and targeted emails generate 58% of all revenue according to The Direct Marketing Association. So, segment your email list and customize information based on status in the sales cycle, industry, job title and other important target areas. Additionally, conduct research through analytics tools or surveys to further narrow the target field and boost click-through rates. Seemingly small facets such as the subject line, the sender name, the word count and the location of your call to action all will affect whether your content reaches the recipient, so be sure to follow successful email marketing guidelines.
Influence Via Influencers
Thought leaders in your industry have a lot of clout when it comes to appealing to your audiences. They’re viewed as experts in the field, and their content is considered “king” within the marketplace. In fact, 74% of people turn to social networks for guidance on purchase decisions and major influencers come first in line to help make those decisions. Network with fellow thought leaders and encourage them to share your content to vastly increase your outreach. A shared piece of content via thought leaders can result an 11x increase in ROI. Take a piece of content that normally reaches 200 people, depending on the size of your audience. It can gather the attention of more than 2,000 people after a single though leader shares the piece. Just imagine the chain reaction from there.
Research influencers who align with your brand and help establish your company’s credibility and expertise. The content you want to share should align with their goals, and vice versa. And don’t go only for the big fish. Mutual sharing between companies and individuals in the power middle can go a long way for your range of outreach and encourages audience cross-over. It’s also important to not only focus on companies. Authors and speakers are a great target for influencer marketing because, if they’re self-employed, they don’t usually have affiliation to other brands which makes collaboration much easier.
Content Distribution: Ride the Wave
In the world of digital marketing, it’s easy for blogs, articles, whitepapers and case studies to fall into the black hole of endless online content. Rather than fighting upstream, learn how to ride the wave. Work with fellow content creators, take advantage of copious digital data and use the information at your fingertips as stepping stones to increase content sharing. Get smart about how your multichannel content distribution, and there’s no doubt your exposure will increase.