Shweiki Media Printing Company teams up with Joe Pulizzi, founder of The Content Marketing Institute and author of Epic Content Marketing, to present a must-watch webinar educating viewers on his fourth book, Content Inc.
I have a goal to write a book every two years. My third book, Epic Content Marketing, was geared more toward large businesses and I wanted to do something that focused on small businesses and startup entrepreneurs. I found many case studies of successful businesses and reversed engineered their models. Universally, there were six steps that every successful company employed.
- The Sweet Spot: Find the sweet spot and determine the story you should be telling.
- The Content Tilt:Telling a different story that will break through all the content clutter.
- Building the Base: Drive one content type consistently over time.
- Harvesting the Audience: It is extremely important to gather email subscribers and newsletters.
- Diversification: Once you build a strong audience from your first content channel, it is time to diversify.
- Monetization: There are a lot of different ways a business can make money such as advertising, sponsorships, events, data, donations, selling more products and services, creating more loyal customers, etc.
All these companies took over 12 months to really work. If you want to build a loyal relationship with the audience and create an asset over time, then the Content Inc. model is something you want to look at.
If you cannot invest 12 months of time, this model might not work out for you. To test it out, you can start a six month pilot program that focuses on one type of content, one type of customer and how to deliver it consistently. It takes a while to build audiences organically. You can put some sponsorships advertising, pay per click, and social advertising around content to get more attention faster. However, normally you are not going to see direct revenue until around month 12.
B2B companies have seven to nine decision makers, influencers and gatekeepers. As you create a content marketing approach, you want to focus on one of them and that’s why you need to figure out who you are talking to. If you are talking to different groups at the same time, you will never be relevant enough because they have different needs.
Having a content marketing mission statement is very important. Companies need to know exactly who they are targeting, what content they are going to deliver and what is in it for the audience. Go back to each audience you target, and create a singular mission statement for each one. At first, it is not about selling more widgets, it is about helping the audience in some way. The mission statement helps everybody in the company stay on the same page. As you create each individual piece of content, there is a particular outcome it is trying to achieve. What is the purpose of the blog post or webinar?
For more information on content marketing mission statements, go to Google and type it in. The first few search results will yield articles I have written about this topic based on examples from media and small and large businesses.
Doing this work in the beginning, it will make less work in the long run. You do not want to execute something without building a strategy.
There are hundreds, if not thousands, of ways to communicate in today’s world. Many ways are either free or relatively inexpensive. This has led to many businesses doing a lot of different things because it does not cost a lot of money. We have gotten into this mentality of “We should because we can.” That is the wrong way to go about this. Everyone who has been successful, has approached content marketing in the same way. They target an audience and focus for the most part on one content line. Then, they focus on one content channel like a blog, website, magazine or YouTube and finally, they consistently deliver that content. Focus on building that core, that hub and then you diversify once you built that audience.
There are three to four ways to promote content which is different from content channels. Promotions can be paid or on social networks like Facebook. Content channels are blogs, magazines, websites, podcasts, etc. You can use different social promotions for promoting content, but you should stick to one content channel at first.
Do not build your house on rented land. The fact is, we have no control over connections on social platforms. If you are a brand and have over 10,000 people that like your page, less than 1% of those likes will actually see an organic update from you. If you want to get in touch with people on one of these social platforms like Facebook, then you are going to need to pay. You should use social media, but with the mentality that it can be gone the next day. It is important to focus on platforms that you have control over like email. Email gives you the most control to deliver content directly.
Nowadays, people can be wary of incorporating an email approach comes up because people see it as old school. However, email is vital and so inexpensive its basically free. Building an email subscriber list takes time. If you are a small business that needs to be kickstarted, you can rent or purchase a list. It is very important to remember that the people on these lists have not opted in to your content. Therefore, you can give them a sample and ask them if they would like to subscribe. The best way to use these types of lists is giving people a chance to opt in instead of adding them to the email subscriber list right away.
First, you have to make a decision on whether or not you are going to commit to this content marketing plan. Focus on one audience and then focus on an area where you can actually be the leading expert in. You should set expectations properly with the team so they know what it will take to build these inroads. Lastly, what you are doing is building an audience, an asset that will know, like and trust you. If they know, like and trust you, they are more willing to buy from you.
To buy my book, visit content-inc.com.