You’ve planned and created content. Now let’s look at how to distribute and promote it. In this article, you’ll review ways to promote and distribute content, create a content calendar, and examine content trends.
The next step after content creation is distribution of that content.
Let’s hear from HubSpot to learn more.
There’s a certain way you want to leverage your content through distribution. The right distribution technique gets the right content in front of the right person at the right time.
Your content can be a powerful tool to attract visitors, convert leads, and so on, but you have to distribute it to help it actually achieve those feats.
Use your website pages and business blogs, not only for the content, but to also host the different content offers that you’ve created.
Landing pages will act as that gatekeeper for your content offers.
Social media is a fantastic tool to use when promoting your content.
There are many different social channels you can use, so keep your buyer persona in mind and think about where they might be spending their time.
Use a social media scheduling tool to help you save time.
Calls to action can be placed on your website to entice your website visitors to download or request your different offers, and use email to let prospects know about the exciting new pieces of content you’ve created.
All of these methods work, you just have to be promoting continuously.
If that e-book is still relevant six months after you created it, promote it again.
Just make sure to freshen up the promotion of it, as opposed to sending out a tweet, an email, and so on, with the same verbiage as the first update.
Think of the content distribution as a way to maximize the shelf life of your content.
Amplify that content.
Don’t make the mistake of getting a lot less engagement than you should for the amount of time you’re spending on creating content.
Promote your content
Content on its own won’t do much. You have to distribute it and promote it.
You can categorize the promotion of content in three ways: paid, owned or earned, also called POE.
Paid media or content is content you pay to place on a website that you don’t control.
When you pay for placement, it’s also called advertising.
Owned media or content is content you author and typically runs on your own website or properties.
Earned media or content is media that others write about you.
The most effective marketing utilizes all three types of content: paid, owned and earned.
For example, if you are a new company and have low traffic on your website and blog, you will not generate enough sales just by publishing on your own channel.
You’ll need to publish to other channels and, perhaps, pay for promotion via Twitter or Facebook ad or find influencers who can spread the word about your content and message to their audience.
Hubspot breaks down promotion as organic and paid. Let’s hear more.
Organic content promotion is designed to increase the visibility of your content and the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns without spending money on ad space, boosted content or promoted content.
Some of the most effective organic content promotion channels are search engine optimization, email marketing, social media, live promotions, live events or webinars, influencer networks and let’s not forget the good old fashioned word of mouth.
A benefit of doing organic promotion is increased brand authority across various platforms.
Because the amount of content you can promote is not limited by a budget, you’re able to use multiple platforms to promote quality content and increase awareness about your business and brand.
However, the challenge is that you’ll need to ensure consistency around developing and publishing content regularly.
In contrast, paid content promotion allows you to show your content to a highly specific audience.
In most cases, you’re able to customize the target audience pool as well as the message.
But you’ll have to spend money in order for anyone to see your content.
The most common channels for paid promotion are search engine ads that are placed on platforms, such as Google, Yahoo or Bing and paid social media campaigns on platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram.
A benefit of paid promotion is the ability to develop and deliver highly targeted content to consumers who will find the content most relevant.
A challenge when doing paid promotion is securing enough budget in order to achieve your desired results.
To overcome this challenge, its best to experiment with a small budget to discover the best ways to achieve your desired outcome.
The most efficient way for organic and paid content promotion to work together is promote well-performing content.
Content that performs well will have above average engagement with it such as likes, shares, retweets and link clicks, which drive traffic to your website.
As you are likely starting to see, there is a ton of content out there and new content popping up every day.
In general content tends to follow emerging consumer behavior.
Let’s take a look at some content trends.
One of the big turning points in digital marketing, is when brands started to incorporate user-generated content.
User-generated content is content like blogs, pictures, videos that consumers themselves carry around their brand, product or service.
At first, many brands feared user-generated content because they wanted to maintain control of their brand.
But digital marketing now is a two way conversation and that means consumers are going to have their say.
And as the tools they have like iPhone, social media platforms or messaging apps get more advanced, users have become more and more creative.
But the good news is, you can leverage their enthusiasm and they can become a valuable source of content creation, distribution and promotion.
BuzzFeed has successfully harnessed the power of user generated content.
Well, what’s been so interesting about this whole notion of user-generated content, is we are growing up in a generation that is so not afraid to be in front of camera, so not afraid of using technology to create post-production and create valuable clips and videos of themselves.
And so, what we even term and define as user-generated is completely changed.
What I see next is that content is going to play a much greater role in helping marketers create these smaller news groups and target them in a way that is much more powerful and speak to them through that content so that their brands actually resonate.
The Future of Content
As consumer behavior shifts over time marketers have to respond with new content.
Let’s look at what the future of content marketing looks like.
Nearly two thirds of smartphone owners use messaging more than five times a day to communicate with others.
From Facebook’s mobile messenger to the popularity of apps in non-Western markets like WeChat, consumers increasingly communicate outside of public social network pages.
Where consumers go, marketers follow.
And as a result paid media has begun to appear on messaging apps.
Google has jumped on the trend with this new click to message ads.
Companies can set up a message extension that gives users an easy way to text companies by launching a users SMS app with a pre-written message tailored to the product or service they’re interested in.
For example, if you’re a travel advertiser and someone messages you after searching for New York City hotels, they can send or edit your pre-written message text.
Like “I’m interested in a reservation. Please, text me back with more information”.
Chat bots are computer programs designed to simulate a conversation with the human using audio or text.
Brands are developing chat bots that give consumers assistance.
For example, Hyatt Hotel Group developed a chat bot application based on Facebook’s messenger API that allows users to chat with a bot that can help book reservations, ask for bouquet recommendations and order flowers without leaving Facebook.
There’s even a chat bot for marketers.
Virtual reality. VR is a computer generated simulation of a three dimensional image or environment that users interact with in a seemingly real way by using special electronic equipment such as goggles or gloves fitted with sensors.
Brands are already using the medium to deliver experiential marketing.
Marketing that makes you feel like you’re actually experiencing the product or service versus just hearing or reading about it.
With virtual reality brands can teleport customers anywhere and put them inside the story.
You’ve probably heard of Amazon’s Echo or Google home.
These are smart home devices that consumers can use to order delivery, set the room temperature, and even play music with verbal commands.
Domino’s was the first fast food brand to create an app on the Echo platform that allows users to order pizza with verbal commands.
As more devices or appliances like refrigerators and coffee makers become smart, more marketing opportunities are sure to follow.
Artificial intelligence, AI, uses algorithms to figure out increasingly complex tasks.
Tasks that have been largely left to humans.
AI powers Apple’s Siri and her counterparts, Microsoft’s Cortana, IBM’s Watson, and Google assistant.
As these voice operated assistance grow in adoption it’s likely marketers will vie to be top of these virtual minds, much like they did when search engines emerged.
Further, AI in its subset machine learning will be used to handle marketing tasks that require a lot of resources like content production or content analytics.
Already companies such as Narrativa and Narrative Science use AI to create human quality text based content.
New consumer behaviors emerge all the time and content follows them.
Be sure to keep an eye on these content trends and utilize them when it makes sense for your audience.
For even more on the future of content marketing check out HubSpot research.
If you’re not going to fully commit to a content marketing strategy, don’t do it until you can.
But if you’re ready commit, whether it’s blogging, podcasting or another kind of content, pick one platform where you’re going to build subscribers and deliver content consistently over a long period of time.
It can take 12 to 24 months to see results.
We’ll cover what kind of results you’ll look for in other article.
You need to distribute and promote your content for it to work for you.
A content calendar will keep your plan on track, and keep an eye on content trends.
Okay. You’ve planned, created and distributed your content.
Now what? It’s a piece of the puzzle many marketers forget.