Content marketing is highly competitive today. Last year surveys from CMI found that 88% of B2B and 76% of B2C companies use it for conducting their marketing campaigns. With that in mind, you should have it both ways to stand out from competitors and make your content strategy play.
Surprise-surprise, but content marketing is not about content but what you want to achieve with it. The 80/20 rule works best here: spend 80% of your time promoting content and only 20% of time creating it.
Easier say than do. We all know so many tactics on content promotion, but we all have one more thing in common: a lack of time, which is one of top 5 challenges for marketers striving to deal with multitasking.
I’ve undertaken attempts to overcome the problem of time management for content marketers in my articles at Moz and Tor Refsland’s blog. Being a writer, I focused on saving time for content creation though it went hand in hand with promotion or, more precisely, no time for promotion. (Read: no brand recognition, no conversion, and no ROI.)
Creating lip-smacking content is not enough. Obviously, we all still need nontrivial promotion tactics leading to increased conversion rates while also saving time for other tasks, no less significant for success. So, if you don’t want to join that 62% of marketers considering their content strategies inefficient – try the below ones.
You might hear of them, but you hardly made the most out of them.
1) Outreach influencers ingeniously
Before bumping all influencers in your niche and begging to share your content, decide who of them would best serve your campaign. It may appear that 2-3 people will do much more for your content than 10-15 altogether. Aspects to consider are many: your niche, topics, your goal (d’you want to drive traffic or strengthen your brand awareness?); what the influencer thinks on your brand; or, what tone he or she addresses a reader.
Save time on finding their contacts
These tools will help you:
- Email Hunter from Google to get emails from websites and LinkedIn profiles.
- BuzzStream to reach influencers via emails and social media. Here’s the guide on using it.
- Lumanu to discover interesting content and identify your influencer targets.
- OutreachPlus to send highly-personalized emails automatically
Start promoting your content even before publishing it
Reach out to influencers, tell them about your piece, and ask if they would like to provide their point of view on it. Cite them with backlinks to their websites. They will promote your content after it goes live because it’s about their promotion as well.
Not the worst way to save some time, huh?
You are welcome to use this template:
Let them know you mentioned them
We all do this by emailing influencers, but they are busy people who can likely miss or simply ignore it. To increase the open rate of your emails, follow the advanced tips on email writing from Aaron Orendorff that he introduced together with Backlinko and shared in his article on Inc.
Also, we use Twitter to mention influencers and let them know about new content they would be willing to share:
But big chances are they will miss it, too.
So, an alternative way to reach influencers is sending them direct messages on LinkedIn, which is a good approach to save time on follow-up.
2) Invite guest writers to promote content for you
If you welcome guest blogging at your business website, you can delegate its promotion to guest writers. As authors, they are interested in making it viral and open to as many readers as possible.
For example, Venngage motivates their guest writers to promote articles and joins the promotion of a guest post on their website only after it becomes more or less popular in the online community. When my fellow Mike Hanski from Bid4Papers submitted the article to their blog, he helped managers to save time by promoting the post himself. So, mention this detail in your guest post guidelines, mapping out energy and time between staff workers and guest authors.
3) Stop chasing after quantity
Pro marketers know that more content doesn’t equal more ROI. They don’t spend time on creating hundreds of blog posts or infographics, fussing over where to promote this bulk afterward.
More efficient would be creating the best piece of content and then focusing on its promotion to the most relevant resources.
Stay picky while building the outreach list and don’t cram as many sites as possible: while nothing is wrong with big lists of contacts, they take too many hours from you. More fruitful would be concentration on quality over quantity. Yes, you’ll have fewer resources for promotion but all dead-on and more beneficial than hundreds of mediocre though still relevant websites.
How to build this outreach list?
The fastest method is Google: search for your industry + blog/site. Let’s say your piece is about content marketing (yeah, creative enough, I know):
You might want to check out all those links, as they contain the most popular resources within the niche. Yet, your competitors are likely to contact them too, which means you’ll need to take the best shot for standing out.
This process of finding websites for promotion saves your time initially, yet demands to check all the results to identify the most relevant resources for outreach.
Choose the best ones
The next step is to decide if all resources from search results are worth your time. Check them all for:
- Domain authority: MozBar will calculate it for you.
- Social search: What’s the website’s social following? Even if they can’t link to your content directly, a social share might be valuable for promotion.
- Content they post: Do they welcome contributions? If they post original content only, yours is unlikely to make a difference.
To save time for promotion, identify the best person to contact. For that, avoid generic contact forms and email addresses a la firstname.lastname@example.org.
Send a request to the person who will make a decision about your content: an editor of the category for your content, a sub-editor, or a content manager. When impossible to determine direct contacts, you might want to reach them on LinkedIn or Twitter.
4) Make others want to share your content
Your best promotion source is the people reading your content, so make it easy for them to find and share your story. For that, make sure to optimize it for search, as well as social sharing.
Source: Scoop.it blog
- Optimize it for a keyword.
- Add social sharing buttons. (Click to Tweet and Pin it work, too.)
- Use awesome images.
You can save time for content promotion by linking to it from the most popular page on your website. Use your analytics program to determine and highlight the current most trafficked content, and add the link to your newly created content there.
For your content to grab a wider audience, adapt it for channels other than text blogs. For example, it could become a video, infographic, SlideShare presentation, or webinar. Such a trick will also help to prolong your content’s lifespan.
5) Choose time for promotion wisely
Time matters, so refer to the study from KISSmetrics on the best time for content promotion.
Promotion is repetitive work that you can automate by tools and, therefore, save tens of hours a month. Tools are many, and every blog holds it their duty to publish an ultimate list of tools for content marketers. The longer it is, the faster we want to try they all; however, it would be wise to choose one tool for each task, thus improving the promotion quality.
Neil Patel shares 11 tools that will save you time with content marketing, naming ContentMarketer.io, Buffer, and Narrow.io those helping with promotion in particular. It’s your play now.
What’s worked for you?
Have you tried any tactics from mentioned here? What worked best? What didn’t work? Share your comments below and don’t hesitate to tell about your tactics that save time on content promotion.
About the author:
Bid4Papers blogger, passionate guest writer, and ghostwriter, Lesley specializes in data research, content creation, and distribution. Struggling with grammar nazi every day, she polishes her writing skills and does her best to avoid “really” and “very” in her web copies. “Nearly impossible” goes to her rubbish bin, too.
If you want to get 30 effective techniques to master content marketing along with valuable insights from 10+ influencers like Mark Schaefer, Rebecca Lieb, Lee Odden, Jason Miller or Ian Cleary, download our free eBook now!
Image by Ashley Adcox
Great. That’s what I needed. Thanks for awesome post.