Content Marketing: 9 tips for a successful blog promotion
There’s more to running a blog than just producing content. After all, the effort invested in the content production is meant to pay off in terms of reach, visibility and traffic, thereby contributing to content marketing and ultimately customer acquisition. But how do you go about promoting your blog content to achieve as wide and effective a web distribution as possible? Here, you can find the best tips and tricks for successful blog content marketing!
Naturally, the actual content of your blog comes first. If the blog content isn’t up to scratch, even the best promotion strategy will be in vain. Users will be disappointed, they won’t share your content and they won’t return to your blog. The content of your blog will only be read if the quality is good and it creates added value. And it can only achieve that if it aims at a very specific target group and caters to their needs and interests.
When you develop your content strategy, you should therefore definitely take our 5 Tips for a more successful blog to heart, rather than just launch yourself into writing for the heck of it. Your target group analysis and a target group specific keyword analysis also make up a big chunk of your content strategy planning. Which keywords matter to your target group? In our article Your successful content marketing cycle in 6 steps, we explain how you should approach your research. If you use the right keywords in your blog and you use the right number of them, your potential customers will find you and there’s no need for you to actively approach them. So, the first step towards successful blog marketing is inbound marketing, and only the next step requires your efforts to distribute and seed your content on external websites.
Image: The Keep Calm-o-matic
2. Recognise and cater for the needs of your target group
You want to produce content that is both exciting and novel for your target group? A really effective way of achieving this is to tackle your target group’s fundamental interest in particular subjects, while offering an individual perspective on these issues or placing a unique focus on a really unusual aspect. One of the golden rules in content marketing: Be unique. Stand out from the competition.
Another tip that allows you to kill two birds with one stone – to produce helpful content and distribute it directly, reaching the right consumers – is this: Have a look around the social media groups (such as LinkedIn) in your particular content niche. Are there any live discussions or issues to which you know the right answer? Sit down and write a blog entry on this particular issue and share it directly with the group!
3. Know your influencers: Targeted networking
Who are the people and companies that are highly regarded and therefore influential in your sector? A competitor analysis will provide useful insights, which are also helpful in other respects. Who promotes your competitors and why?
Find the influencers in your niche and utilise their influence for your purposes, to implement your content marketing strategy. In the ideal case scenario, you can combine the added value of your content with an increased reach: Why not enrich your next blog entry with an expert opinion from one of the most influential people in your sector? Get him to make a statement on your topic, integrate it into your next article, or write an article about this expert yourself. As long as you paint him in a positive light, he may gladly distribute your article amongst his followers and thereby increase your reader circle substantially. You can equally benefit from referencing the sources you utilised in your research for your blog content and offering a backlink or hashtag, drawing their attention to yourself and thereby encouraging the sharing of your content.
4. Social media marketing give-and-take
The internet is a give-and-take business, in particular in the area of social media marketing. So, before you try to promote your own content, you should focus on promoting the content of some of the most important publishers within your niche. Win them over by supporting their content marketing! Connect with influential bloggers and interesting companies in social networks. If you evaluate, share and like their content, they will be more likely to push you and your content. And this results in yet another win-win situation: Your content curation of third party content provides your social media profile with fresh, high quality content, while creating a basis for likes and shares of your own content.
Image: Screenshot Crispy Content on Twitter
5. No. 1 Rule of networking: Personal reference
You have compiled a list of influential bloggers and portals with whom and in which you would like to place your content to drive your content marketing. You want to utilise other people. Rather than pouncing on them by sending off a direct link to your most recent content via email or social media, you should take a more careful approach and start by building common ground on a personal level. A personal contact (online or offline) has a far higher propensity for mutual support. Utilise social networks to engage in discussions about your common interest, attend relevant trade fairs and events and promote yourself and your content offline.
6. Realising your social media potential: Utilising profiles and channels
In recent years, social media has moved away from its initial purpose, developing into a very effective and extensively employed marketing tool. But what stops you from using it the way it was intended? Use Facebook and the like as a social NETWORK to connect with your influencers, other bloggers and your target group, to communicate with them and get to know them. This is way more promising than simply adding links to your latest article in social media entries and hoping that they land in your interest group’s newsfeed. Interact with people who react to your posts, communicate with them. Personal relationships create commitment and thereby contribute to your content marketing directly.
Many bloggers also neglect to push the limits of their social media marketing potential. Your objective shouldn’t be limited to providing content to existing followers, but to reach their followers as well: Design your posts in a manner that encourages sharing. If you can reach a level at which your posts are spread around the net virally, the automatic process of viral marketing will do the hard work for you.
Moreover, you should be aware of the differences between the networks. You can’t place the same information on all your profiles: LinkedIn users expect different types of content and a different form of communication from your Twitter followers or Facebook fans. If your social media posts look like a thoughtless link-copy-and-paste job, you are not creating a good impression. You should consider this in the development of your content marketing strategy.
7. Visual content marketing: Letting images do the talking
You may already know that when you seed interest on Pinterest, Tumblr and Instagram, adding a meaningful and strong image to your post along with a link to your blog content is crucial. But it has a major impact on how your post is received in other networks as well. Ideally, the image should provide an introduction to your subject and convey to the viewer, in an instant, what he can expect when he clicks your link. You should aim to use a picture that provokes a reaction even if it’s removed from the context of your blog text. Images are magnets for attention, they improve the understanding of your content and make for more interesting reading. The more individual and interesting your photograph is, the more effective it will prove. This is why you should avoid stock photographs. Your seeding posts also need to convey high quality standards and look appealing to attract users to your page. My article 8 ways to win over your content marketing audience with strong images shows you how to make your content marketing more visual.
Image: Crispy Content
8. Once doesn’t count: Reposting
Sharing your new content on a few social media profiles once does not drive it up the seeding or content marketing highway. It’s perfectly acceptable to share your content more than once. Your followers may not all be active at the same time and they may have missed your last post, because they live in a different time-zone. However, you should remember one thing when you repost: Variation! Varying your posts has a number of positive effects:
1. Users who have already seen your first post for your latest article don’t get bored or even annoyed.
2. You have the opportunity to highlight different aspects of your article.
3. Different users have different preferences and therefore react differently to content – variation allows you to reach a broader spectrum of people.
4. Using different hashtags also allows you to cross-promote your influencers and push yourself into larger circles.
There is no limit to the possibilities for variation: Vary the title, use short quotes from your content, post an impressive statistic from your article… let your imagination run wild. Or go down the multi-media path; package your content in a new format and share it as a video, PowerPoint presentation or infographic. This can provide your users with an entirely new perspective on your content, appeal to a huge range of recipients and therefore drive the success of your content marketing.
9. Simply the best: Re-seeding of top content
Do you have some blog content that was really popular with your readers and stood out in your analytics, which remains current and interesting? If this is the case, you may well consider sending your evergreen content on another journey through the web and seeding it. Of course, you can pull the master stroke here and incorporate a few links to your latest articles into your top content, thereby moving your readers’ attention from your old content to your new content and keeping them on your blog for longer. Your content marketing strategy will benefit!
Image: Google Analytics, Crispy Content
The fundamental principle is to attract the right people’s attention to yourself and your content in the right place and in the right way to drive your content marketing. There are a few ways to achieve this, which allows you to come closer to your readers, one step at a time. Remember to set realistic goals and bear in mind that some of the strategies introduced here require a longer time to reach fruition. Acknowledge that you need to start optimising the inbound marketing of your content strategy before even thinking about outbound marketing. Gradually build up a personal network of influential partners. Design your seeding posts to be appealing and share-worthy. Repost and cross-link your different content. These steps will help your content marketing strategy flourish and your content will reach the far corners of the online world and the minds of a large number of readers.