Wonderful! You know what you want your content marketing program to achieve and you’ve inventoried your existing content (Content marketing for B2B: Start with a plan and an inventory). But now you’re stumped. There are so many channels you could use—websites, blogs, and social media vehicles. Where should your content go?
There’s no simple way to answer that question, but here are a few things to consider:
Find out where your audience goes for information
Identifying the online vehicles your audience uses is critical for successful content marketing. It’s just like identifying vehicles for advertising and public relations, though print and broadcast media make your job easier by providing readership/viewer stats.
Content marketing involves Internet channels, and these outlets often provide little information about their visitors so you’ll need to do some research on your own. Ask customers or prospects where they go for your type of information. Ask if and how they use social media. Find out what blogs and e-newsletters they read and what websites they visit.
Combine what you learn with your own thinking. If you were advertising or conducting a PR campaign, which publications would you consider? Do they have websites, blogs, e-newsletters that might publish your content? If your audience is using these sites or vehicles to find your kind of information, you want to include these venues as part of your content marketing program.
Make your content fit the channel
You wouldn’t try to place an article on the benefits of granite countertops in a hunting magazine—and the same sense of “fit” applies to when you’re considering online channels as potential vehicles. You’ll want your content to fit not only the topics and audiences of a channel, but also match the content type used by the channel. Some channels are exclusive to one type of content—like YouTube for videos or SlideShare for slide presentations. Other websites publish all sorts of content, so your question of fit will relate more to topics. No matter what the channel, if your audience is going there for information, you’ll want to produce content in the right form and post it where your targets will find it. If you already have good videos or slideshows, put them on the right vehicles and promote them.
The top social media channels (Linked In, Twitter, Google+ and Facebook) have their own ways of operating. If you’ll be using one or more of these, take time to study these vehicles first. Look at competitors, learn from other companies and read current articles.
Try, measure, learn…repeat
Content marketing is new. The Internet and social media are evolving rapidly. Given these factors it’s not surprising that some experimentation may be in order. While a plan is essential, we strongly recommend you keep flexible so you can take advantage of new ideas. A white paper may lead to a blogpost, the blogpost to an infographic that’s offered in an e-ad or marketing email.
Your plan should have some measurable objectives (website visitors, for example), so measure outcomes regularly, learn from them and try again. Measurement of web programs is fast, so programs can be revamped and retried quickly. It’s fast-paced and fun.
Need help developing a winning content marketing program or producing engaging content? Contact your CCC account manager or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Creative Communications Consultants, Inc. (CCC) is a business-to-business marketing communications agency. We specialize in providing strategic marketing communications for marketers of industrial and commercial products who target B2B audiences.