Content is the secret weapon of marketing.
Good content not only makes the case for your brand, but it also shows your customers you have their best interests at heart. But the value of getting published really comes from what you do after publication.
Leveraging published content shifts your marketing from selling to consulting — a longer term and ultimately more profitable image for your company. Here are five ways to put your published content to work:
At Influence & Co., we publish summaries of our guest contributions on our site, giving our own audience the chance to engage with our external contributions. This is the simplest way to increase the exposure of your content, engage your audience, and showcase your valuable industry knowledge your website visitors. Don’t forget to link directly to the published article as well. Be careful: You could be penalized by search engines if you don’t tag your repurposed content correctly with rel="canonical" tags.
Learn how to track your content: Download our eBook on "Content Life."
If you're already talking to someone who’s interested in your brand, send him links to your published content — especially if it’s an article you think he would enjoy or a piece that answers a concern or question. This demonstrates your company’s credibility and authority in a natural way. Place links to your published content in the signature line of your email as a way to share valuable content in an unobtrusive way.
When considering what type of content to share, think about what's important to your leads. What are their objections or questions? These types of questions can guide future content development as well.
A simple newsletter is a great way to share published content with subscribers, but be careful to offer something your customers really want. Well-done email or drip campaigns are powerful tools, but no one wants to be flooded with boring stock content. Develop individualized campaigns for customers who are at different stages of the buying process and who may have different values.
One of my favorite newsletters is from Write2Market’s CEO Lisa Calhoun, who regularly includes links to her articles published on sites like Forbes, Fast Company, and Entrepreneur. The articles are engaging, relevant, and naturally affirm her expertise.
Some people prefer infographics, videos, or even speeches to in-depth articles. Repurpose great ideas, insights, and actionable steps from your published content to reach a wider audience. It’s better to deliver a single high-quality, consistent message than three or four disjointed, low-quality articles.
HubSpot does a great job at this. Its YouTube channel and infographics are full of fascinating tips using repurposed content. The marketing is consistent, interesting, and provides real value to readers.
Anyone who’s following you on social media is already interested in what you’re offering, so don't hesitate to link to your content.
Sharing content on social media is a good way to humanize your brand. Clients create relationships with people, not companies, so engage directly with your audience. Find LinkedIn groups or Twitter conversations and join in. If you're engaged with influencers in your field, they’ll be more likely share your content. Find a niche you identify with, and share your most valuable content there. Don't advertise; interact and participate in the conversation.
A great example of someone leveraging social media to drive traffic to his published content is Zapier founder Wade Foster, who outlined his process in this blog post. Foster not only uses mainstream social networks to reach others, but he also targets unique segments of his audience on more niche sites and platforms. (Full disclosure: Influence & Co. and Zapier have done business together.)
Your published content is a tool for connecting and engaging with your audience. By sharing your expertise, you demonstrate competence in your industry, break down trust barriers, establish relationships, and make your customers feel more confident in your brand. But if you simply let the “publish” button be the last step, you are losing out on numerous opportunities.
Imagine investing the time and money into creating a TV commercial and then shelving it forever. Getting content written and published is the hard part. Don’t let all that effort go to waste.
Post by Joshua Johnson.
I'm passionate about entrepreneurship, technology, Mizzou, and all St. Louis sports teams. I've contributed to Forbes, Entrepreneur, Under30CEO, and Linked2Leadership.