Content marketing takes more than content


“Content marketing is more than a marketing strategy that uses content to attract an audience. Content marketing also is a full-on skill set. It’s no longer enough to market with content. You must understand how to market the content itself,” writes A. Lee Judge in a recent guest post for the Content Marketing Institute.

Whether there needs to be a second definition or not, the important message is that simply producing content isn’t going to drive the results your business needs.

Content marketing is a vehicle that will help drive sales. But this is no Sunday drive. You can’t just hop in your content and drive off to Salesville. Think of it this way: Content marketing is more like the Indy 500. You don’t just show up with a car and hope to win. You need:

  • A great car (aka the content): If your content isn’t interesting and relevant then you’ll loose the audience and you’re out of the race.
  • A great team: Just like a single person can’t drive while simultaneously maintaining and fuelling a car, you can’t expect one person to create, version, distribute, promote, and ultimately sell your content to an audience.
  • A strategy: Just getting off the line quickly won’t guarantee success. You need a plan that takes into consideration your competitors, the conditions, and your final goals if you hope to win.

Next time you’re working on a content piece, or briefing a team, take a minute to pause and consider whether you have a plan and all the pieces that will allow you to win.

Whether the pandemic has left you swamped with work or making tough decisions about reducing resources, you’re likely faced with the need to create content more efficiently.

The answer shouldn’t be to lower quality and join the Cult of Efficiency. Something isn’t efficient if you’re failing to achieve your goal. It’s just cheap.

One way we recommend to avoid this trap is to make sure the quality content is used multiple ways. Think of it as content upcycling. Some examples:

  • If you’ve launched an interview-based podcast, you can transcribe the interview to turn that in a blog post, social media posts, even Twitter audio posts.
  • If you’re producing live content for Facebook and Instagram, be sure to post the recording to YouTube, turn the transcription into articles, embed the recording on your site and share stand alone insights on social media with links back to the articles.
  • If you’re part of a virtual event —whether you’re hosting, sponsoring or even just attending — take advantage of the opportunity to capture thought leadership. Live tweet the event by sharing great facts, quotes and insights from the speakers. Then embed those tweets into a blog post that can be shared in your newsletter.

With July now in the rear view mirror, have you found yourself wondering what happened to that Facebook boycott? Oh, no? Only us? …well, it looks like Facebook’s 2nd quarter financials suggest any financial pain from the boycott has been manageable.

It’s unclear what will happen next for the #StopHateforProfit movement.

As Digiday reported some brands like Unliver have announced that they will continue to avoid Facebook for the remainder of the year while others say that Facebook has been making progress and are starting to turn the taps back on. While we applaud the actions taken by many brands, at the end of the day it’s the users — the audience — that will determine the future of the platform.

This content originally appeared in our weekly newsletter called TARGET:AUDIENCE where we explore ways to find, understand, grow, engage and inspire digital audiences — so you don’t have to. Want this in your inbox? Signup below