02 May 7 Simple Rules for Amazing Content Marketing
I just keynoted LinkedIn’s Brand Connect Asia-Pacific ’13 conference in beautiful Singapore, so I figured what better place to share my presentation from a LinkedIn conference than, well, LinkedIn! So here are the 7 simple rules I just shared about how to do amazing content marketing across social media, and why it pays to be likeable:
1) Be consistent.
When we launched our first blog, Buzz Marketing Daily, six years ago, early employees complained, “But Dave, this means we’ll have to post daily.”
“Exactly!” I replied. We did post daily to our blog, and within a year we had become one of the most read blogs in marketing and advertising in the world. The days of static websites are long gone. Even if you have good content today, you’ve got to consistently “feed the beast”, adding and distributing new content on a monthly, weekly or even daily basis. Every brand is a publisher today.
2) Be useful.
You can be consistent but if your content isn’t useful or valuable, then it’s a waste. How can you help your customers? Are you there to educate them or to entertain them, or both?
We’ve shared so much useful content over the years, that twice, people have walked up to be at conferences and said, “Dave, I just want to thank you for all of your useful content. I’ve taken it all and started my own social media agency!”
Huh? Not only are we helping competitors, but we’re actually inspiring new ones? But the reality is, even for the competitors we’ve helped with our useful content, we’ve gotten thousands of inbound leads from companies who know, like and trust us because of that content. I once even got a phone call from a CMO of a large company in the US who said, “We have to do a RFP, but I’ve been reading your blog for a year now, and I know we’re going to hire you. I have $250,000 for our first project.”
3) Be authentic.
Authenticity breeds trust, and trust breeds business. If you can share authentic, even vulnerable content, it will resonate with people. Your CEO should lead the way when it comes to content marketing and social media, and the more employees you have sharing their authentic stories on behalf of your organization, the better.
Here is an article I wrote which includes some very authentic, vulnerable statements. This could have been risky, but it ended up resonating with people and didn’t result in any lost clients.
4) Tie into your customer’s emotions.
It’s always been a core concept of marketing and advertising to tap into what resonates emotionally with your audience, but now, more than ever, with so much online content competition, if you can create an emotional connection with your customers, you’ll be one step ahead of your competitors.
Take a look at this online video from Malaysian rice company BERNAS that does an amazing job connecting emotionally. (You may need to grab your tissues)
You can have all the great content in the world, but if you don’t share it in the right places, with the right people, it won’t matter. If you’re a retailer targeting urban men, you should be on Foursquare. A consumer product? Facebook. A B2B company? LinkedIn. You don’t have the resources to create and share content across every social network, so pick and choose based on where your audience is.
And if you’re not sure, just ask your customers!
6) Advertise, better.
You don’t have to spend a lot of money on advertising to be a great content marketer. But spending a little money to help reach the right people sure does help. Use Sponsored Updates on LinkedIn, Sponsored Posts on Facebook, and Promoted Tweets to get your best content seen by more people.
Use the amazing targeting features on social networks to have your content reach the right people with your advertising. You know what’s cooler than reaching 1 billion people on Facebook? Reaching the right 1,000, 100 or 10.
7) Tell, don’t sell.
Nobody wants to be sold to but everyone loves a good story. Use storytelling to create content that people actually want to share.
Ideas for “your story”?
Check out our Likeable story if you haven’t seen it yet.
These seven simple rules will help you create and distribute amazing content marketing across social media, to build better relationships with your customers, prospects and employees, and to grow your business – the right way.
Now it’s your turn. How important do you think content marketing is? Which of these seven simple rules resonate with you? What would you add or subtract? Please let me know in the Comments section below.