Here’s five tricks to improve content marketing initiatives. As in most professions, an experienced social media consultant knows certain tricks of the trade to make content marketing work better, faster, easier.
Trick 1: Be specific when setting goals
If the brief is PR, the goal is awareness, and if it’s a marketing strategy the goal is more likely conversions. It’s important to any campaign’s success to have the right goals in mind and to be as specific right from the start. Then campaigns are easy to test, and to prove the return on investment (ROI). Be specific when setting goals.
Awareness campaigns focus on reaching and engaging a specific audience. Reach, visits, shares, comments, likes, follower growth and cost per engagement are the evaluation metrics. Conversion campaigns focus on getting audiences to take action and are results oriented. Campaigns are measured by leads generated, cost per acquisition, lead quality and average order size.
Having defined goals will inform every part of a campaign from messaging to content formats, channel selection, paid promotion tactics and more. Then campaigns are easy to test, and to prove the return on investment (ROI).
Trick 2: Repurpose content
Developing great, effective content requires investment in time and resources. Why not make the most of that investment by repurposing it? Search engines love sites that have several pieces of content on the same topic; it will boost a website up the ranking for a desirable keyword. Getting stories published on other sites delivers those important links back that also improve site ranking.
Using different formats to tell a story will help reach new audiences. For example, a 30-second video story will engage people who don’t want to spend time reading long stories. It will also reinforce messages with those who have read the long-form article. Research shows that most people will see a message seven time before they take action.
Trick 3: Use automation
There is no doubt that social media, when done right, is a time suck. A social media consultant should be invested in productive work, and use automation to perform repetitive tasks.
Using curated content in social media brings many benefits, but it can take a lot of time searching for relevant, quality stories to share. Luckily there many automation tools for content discovery. Feedly and Scoop.it are two examples. These services provide daily updates on the topics of interest and have share buttons built right in to make curation almost effortless.
Scheduling content sharing is a must. Hootsuite, TweetDeck and Buffer are some of the most popular tools and all offer free and paid for services, and there are plenty of others.
It’s important to keep up on what’s happening in online communities and where a brand or its issues are being mentioned. Automating monitoring will save hours of search efforts. There are free tools such as Google Alerts, Social Mention and Mentionmapp. These will provide good actionable insights. There are dozens (hundreds?) of paid-for tools that go much deeper, analyzing trends, identifying influencers, tracking ongoing discussions and conversations. These are worth the money, if there is the budget.
Trick 4: Use a content calendar
The content calendar is a crucial part of a smart strategy. It improves organization and provides a broad overview of the whole campaign. It’s an at-a-glance view of what and when to produce content, which channels to support and who on the team handles each task.
The calendar will boost productivity too. Writers and other creators will begin with a clear focus for each story and it reduces ideation and research time and effort. Additionally, it supports the development of a range of story types and content formats.
Trick 5: video video video
The statistics speak for themselves. If you are not including video in your social media and content marketing campaigns, what’s the point of having them? Video is 80 per cent of all Internet traffic. Customers prefer product video over articles four to one. Using the word ‘video’ in an email subject line boosts open rates by 65 per cent. Social video generates 1,200 per cent more shares than text and images combined.
Need to sharpen your content marketing strategy and programs? Contact me to set up a call.