We are all about content. We read it and, if it’s compelling enough, we share it.
But before reaching your peepers, a single piece of content may have already journeyed much further than you could imagine.
Think about the effort that goes into planning and creating our content—and it’s a gamble. It often turns out that after long hours spent on content creation, there is absolutely nobody to read it afterward.
The best marketers can create jaw-dropping content, but when it comes to distribution, this seems to be an impossible thing to accomplish for many. The era of simply sharing your post on social media is long gone. We need to use our creativity, resourcefulness, and maybe even a growth hacking method too, if we are to ‘spread the word’ about their content.
Getting into the swing of social media marketing and content promotion can be difficult at first. Whether you’re a one-man-shop, member a marketing team, or even part of a digital marketing agency. It’s essential to take this first step, but it’s challenging to start from scratch.
We’re here to lend a helping hand and guide you towards the light: think of us as your content guardians.
Why should you promote content?
First, by utilizing smart distribution, you can increase the reach of your content pieces. If you choose those groups, outlets, and other niches of the Internet where your target audience gathers, then you are on the right path to improving both reach and engagement, which will ultimately drive traffic, leads and sales.
Without distributing your content properly, however, your blog posts and articles might be forgotten about within a few hours or even ignored altogether. The horror.
Smart distribution can also win you some media interest. Some sources may be interested in republishing your articles, exchanging backlinks (get them if you can, because backlinks can be expensive), or covering your topic in their own pieces of content. It’s a win-win situation: they get access to valuable content, and your content is taken places far and wide.
And by promoting your content, position yourself as a thought-leader and influencer, right?
How can you promote your content?
Now that you know how beneficial content promotion can be, it’s time to act!
We know that this is easier said than done, but have faith because we know you’ll find our list of ideas very helpful.
Use media outlets and content aggregators
Depending on what kind of content your brand (even your personal brand) is creating, there are a few content aggregators that you can use to redistribute articles in the form of sneak peeks.
What is a sneak peek? It’s just as it sounds—an opportunity to see or experience something before it is officially presented or released to the public. For content distribution, you can use it as a set of key takeaways or a “trailer” for your article, and distribute it along with a link to your blog post.
For example, if you want to share some content related to technology, marketing or business, head to Growthhackers:
More general content? Then Medium might be a good idea.
Do you have a very geeky article prepared? Hackernews or Hackernoon may be suitable spots for sneak peeks of those.
When you share content with these communities, you can generate valuable and highly targeted traffic. What’s not to like?
If you want to pitch some media with your content (let’s say that you have a great blog post about technology that you want to share further and that you want the media to cover as well), then HARO (Help A Reporter Out) could be an excellent way to validate your idea. Join their newsletter and answer their requests and you might be featured in media outlets like Forbes, Entrepreneur or Business Insider, if you’re a good match.
Join relevant Facebook groups
Communities can drive results like gangbusters. You can both manage them (but this is a story for another day since it’s not simple!) or join some existing communities that are a good fit for your content and, therefore, your brand or products.
There are some mixed opinions about Facebook groups—some say they are full of spam. Indeed, there is a good chance that you’ll encounter one or two spammy groups, but if you focus on your target niche, you’ll be able to narrow your search and weed out the, well, weeds.
Let’s say that you publish how-to business articles for Canadian entrepreneurs. In particular, the nature of the content concerns legal issues in Canada. Joining local Facebook groups for business owners (e.g. Canadian Entrepreneurs) and even looking for professional groups on LinkedIn (Young Social Entrepreneurs of Canada) can provide support with reaching out to the right people in the right place.
Remember about not being spammy and pushy? Beware or your posts could be deleted. You may even get banned from the group (and from Facebook, if you do it regularly), and you clearly won’t gain the desired recognition.
Publish sneak peeks on LinkedIn
Speaking of sneak peeks (again!), LinkedIn is a hugely underestimated and underrated tool for publishing content.
Using the LinkedIn Publishing platform for uploading your sneak peeks helps you to increase the reach of your original content.
Spice up your personal branding
Many are successful in promoting their content simply because they’re personable on social media. They engage on their own profiles to share content and they are building their networks to reach more people. If some of their connections share their content further, then its reach increases further still. If you’re lucky, things can go viral. So, your personal branding really can boost your content strategy.
Marketers are often afraid that their content might not align with their personal branding, but they shouldn’t be: as long as it’s in line with your profession or interests and supported by building a network.
What can you do right here and right now?
- leverage social shares on your Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn (plus Instagram and Pinterest if applicable) profiles
- add links to your blog/content pieces on your social media platforms
- create a list of blog posts to share and decide how you can pair them with some content to share on your social media profiles
Make the most of Quora
Quora is a fantastic wealth of knowledge: both from a question and answer perspective. By answering questions—sharing your insights and expertise—you can build your personal brand and deliver heavy traffic to your blog posts, for instance.
If, for example, you’ve covered ‘The daily routine of a PPC manager’ in a post, you can look for relevant questions to answer on Quora. Then, you can highlight a few key points from your article and redirect your audience to the actual post. Boom!
Quora is free to use, so the traffic costs nothing except for your time, know-how and research.
Involve your team or employees
If you have a team, use them. After all, we don’t want work silos! Don’t force your team into sharing your blog posts, but you can encourage them to do so by presenting the value behind their involvement. If they know that their likes, comments or shares can help the company or the client to gain recognition, then they may be more willing to engage. Let’s also not forget about their own personal branding as well. Sharing for the sake of sharing may not impress them, however.
For example, if your employees like your content updates on LinkedIn, then there is a chance that some people from their network would like it too. It’s a natural and easy way to increase the reach of a particular piece of content.
Distribute content via paid ads
You shouldn’t say no to paid ads. If done well and with the right message, creatives and targeting, they can deliver powerful results. Of course, this won’t work without some trial and error.
Start out by testing campaign goals. It may turn out that, for example, ‘engagement’ objectives actually provide better results than ‘traffic’ or ‘reach’ do.
If you only want to deliver traffic to your blog post, then think outside the box: juggle with some different Facebook post formats, and if your blog looks beautiful on mobile, then make the most of it by trying some mobile placements. Mobile ads are often cheaper and, even if the visitor bounces off of your site quickly, they are already caught up in remarketing 😊
Paid social doesn’t hurt, and the ROAS can be really satisfying.
Collaborate with influencers or industry partners
For some types of content (for example, reviews, promotional material, or launches), it’s best to provide a content boost from the very beginning; this is where influencers—or folks from your industry—might swoop in to save the day.
You can offer partners cross-promotion or a backlink exchange if they don’t already promote any content of your competitors, of course. If you’re planning to launch an influencer marketing campaign, there are a few factors to consider before you seal the deal with a chosen bunch of influencers. Otherwise, this tactic can be a dud.
Influencers can share your content on their social media channels, generating you extra traffic from their well-targeted audiences. Industry partners can also use their networks to spread the word about your content. Whether it’s a blog post, a landing page, an e-book, or just a campaign, they can, and most likely will, help.
Hire a marketing agency to do it all for you
A content marketing strategy should include both content creation and content distribution. We, as a digital marketing agency in Hamilton, get that this may make the whole process quite troublesome and time consuming, which is why we’re here for you. If you’d like your content to be seen, read and shared, don’t hesitate to give us a shout and work with one of the best social media marketing agencies in Canada.
Think outside the box
Don’t consider this list as the be-all and end-all. Every day, you will be inspired by new tools and practices—even by your competitors’ actions.
Even if you have your checklist for content promotion already compiled, you shouldn’t kneel to the god of complacency. Look for new ideas and test out new ways to reach your desired target group with your content. And who knows? Maybe the god’s will favor your content.