In Content Marketing Tips for Small Businesses, Part 1, we talked about basics, trends, and creating great content. But marketing with content doesn’t end there.
The best content involves lots of people to make creation and promotion easier. And when you’re a small business counting every minute and dollar, maximizing your content for the most exposure is critical.
So in part 2 of Content Marketing Tips for Small Businesses, you’ll find tips for involving people and promoting and maximizing your content.
15. Use your own experts. Everyone is an expert at something, including your company partners, management, and employees. Find out your employees’ expertise and take advantage of their skills and knowledge.
For example, someone with a smooth voice and public speaking skills could be the voice (and sometimes face) of your videos, podcasts, and webinars, while a closet filmmaker could help record and edit videos and a graphics whiz could create stellar slideshows and infographics.
16. Write and ask for guest posts. Writing guest posts for other blogs in your industry is an effective way to spread awareness of your brand to bigger audiences and can generate a lot of traffic to your website the day the post is published (and you can delegate this responsibility to employees). Accepting guest posts from other bloggers helps you focus on other content marketing initiatives without neglecting your business blog, so everyone wins.
17. Involve everyone in your business. Getting everyone involved with your content marketing strategy illustrates your company culture and eases the burden of content creation and promotion.
For example, you could ask employees to:
- regularly contribute to the business blog
- promote company content on their personal social media accounts
- participate in research
- help create videos, infographics, and other types of content
18. Join HARO and Reporter Connection. Resources like HARO (Help A Reporter Out) and Reporter Connection give you free publicity and content if you can help a journalist with a story. Once you prove your expertise on a timely subject, the reporter may interview you and your staff to flesh out a story.
19. Leverage your network. The people you’re connected to can help you create better content. Some ways you can use your network include:
- ask questions on LinkedIn Answers and use the best responses as quotes in your content or to help you generate more content ideas
- email or private message experts you know for interviews
- use twitter conversations in your content or to spark ideas for content
If you’re going to quote someone, make sure you ask their permission first and send them a link to the content containing their words.
Promote Your Content
20. Comment on related blogs and forums. A few minutes a day spent building relationships via comments and forums goes a long way. As the people you talk to and those reading your comments begin to trust you, they’ll visit your site and any links to useful content you might offer, eventually becoming fans, leads, brand ambassadors, and customers.
A word of caution: your blog comments and forum posts must be relevant, helpful, and valuable. This technique works best when you focus on helping people. Traffic and leads will come naturally.
21. Respond to comments on your content. Unlike traditional advertising that interrupts prospects, content marketing is a dialogue. Start conversations and build relationships (and goodwill) by always responding to your prospects and leads, whether comments appear on your blog, Facebook page, as retweets, or anywhere else. A few minutes a day will do the trick.
22. Make sharing a habit. Share everything you create as well as excellent content from other sources. Sharing your own content gets the word out, while sharing others’ resources is good form and can genuinely help your customers.
23. Make it easy for your audience to share your content. Lots of readers sharing is how things go viral! Some of the most popular social sharing plugins and code snippets include:
24. Drip useful content into relevant LinkedIn groups. You can join 50 groups on LinkedIn and unlimited subgroups, and some of those groups have tens of thousands of members. Make a plan to regularly share your content in relevant groups and stick to it. Just make sure your content is extremely useful to group members and don’t spam the discussion area.
25. Link to helpful content in your Q&A answers. Many Q&A platforms allow you to link to external resources that support your answer or help the asker. This technique works really well if you use questions as inspiration for content (see tip 19).
26. Share visual content on media-specific channels. The recent rise of visual social media proves the importance of creating and using great photos, graphics, presentations, and videos. Even when they’re connected with blog posts and other types of content, visual content should be shared in as many places as possible, including:
27. Mix creative and tried-and-true promotion tactics. What has worked well for you or your competitors before? Repeat that. Then supplement your email blasts and press releases with more outside-the-box ideas, such as sneak peeks of upcoming content or contests and giveaways.
Maximize Your Content
28. Reuse content for your blog. Recycling content you’ve already created saves a lot of time and stress. Some ideas to try include:
- embed a YouTube video or SlideShare presentation in a blog post
- collect related LinkedIn and Quora answers and publish them as a post (then use tip 25)
- combine newsletter or email articles into one post
- optimize sales literature for search engines and publish as a post
29. Repackage & repurpose old content. Your blog isn’t the only way you can recycle content. You could also:
- combine several related blog posts into an ebook
- turn data from research or case studies into an infographic
- record a webinar and offer it as a subscriber-only video
30. Publish traditional content online. You already create a lot of content offline, such as white papers, brochures, catalogs, spec sheets, and other sales and marketing literature. Publishing them online can increase visibility and helps your customers.
For example, you could offer brochures and catalogs as free downloads on your website and publish white papers and other materials on directories like WhitePaperCentral.com.
Could these content marketing tips for small businesses work for you?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
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