If you’ve read this blog in the past, you already know the value of content marketing. It’s a natural way to connect with your target audience and educate them on industry issues or even alleviate pain points they’re experiencing.
You’ve also probably heard the saying “Content is king, but distribution is queen.” And it’s true. Getting published on high-quality publications and regularly updating your blog with fresh content is great, and you’ll definitely see financial rewards as a result. However, you’ll maximize the value with a distribution strategy driving your content.
Placing your content in front of the right people is arguably the most crucial step. Through proper distribution, you’re putting your content — and brand — front and center with interested eyeballs, fueling conversions and ultimately sales. This is where paid advertising comes into play.
Let’s take a look at a few paid advertising methods and how they can benefit your content distribution strategy:
Sharing your content via social channels is a great start to distribution. However, relying on social media alone limits your organic reach to people your business is already connected with and their networks. That’s where paid social really shines. By using LinkedIn Sponsored Updates, Facebook Promoted Posts, or Promoted Tweets, you can fine-tune the type of person you want to target and reach more people by expanding beyond your follower base.
For example, this is a Facebook Sponsored Update we created for one of our whitepapers, “The Science Behind Getting 100+ Leads From 1 Piece of Content.” As a result, we reached 105,000 business professionals and drove 1,200 new people to our site.
Twitter and LinkedIn offer similar targeting options, with LinkedIn touting targeting features including seniority level, company name or industry, job title, and more.
Because these platforms are social by nature, there’s a good chance that people will like your posts or share them with their connections, too.
Paid search offers a unique advantage because you can target people already looking for a solution related to your content, similar to organic search. But you’re also securing a top placement, regardless of how your content ranks organically. It can be a relatively low-cost way to promote your content, especially if you’re bidding on low-competition, high-ROI keywords.
If you aren’t using Google Keyword Planner to identify concepts to incorporate into your content strategy, it’s time to get started. By writing content with specific keywords in mind and using those in paid search bids, you’re delivering content that’s relevant to searchers and improving your chances of reaching interested people as they look for information.
This strategy also applies to your organic ranking.
Content networks are a growing method of paid distribution and one of the most relevant. Content discovery platforms will get your content in front of readers on major sites like Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, and CNN. While they’re in the reading mindset, they’ll see recommended articles like these from Outbrain on ESPN:
Most of these services allow you to get started with a fairly small budget on a self-serve platform, so it’s easy to test the waters and see whether a content network would be a good fit for your distribution strategy.
With so many distribution methods to choose from, it’s important to remember that your audience will tell you what’s working and what isn’t — in the form of clicks and conversions. Create multiple versions of each ad you place, and systematically optimize each to make sure you’re getting the most out of your advertising spend.
Don’t forget — hitting “publish” doesn’t mean you can abandon that content. It’s your responsibility to maximize exposure for your published articles and, by extension, your brand. And paid advertising is a vital piece of the puzzle you can’t afford to ignore.