3 Easy Ways to Make Content Work Harder for Your Brand

More than twenty years ago, in January 1996, Bill Gates penned an essay titled “Content is King” in which he discussed a prediction that quality content would one day drive the informational and financial impact of brands on the Internet. Calling the Internet the “multimedia equivalent of the photocopier,” Gates imagined the Internet to serve as platform where any contributor, regardless of dollar power, could share ideas, experiences and products with audiences across the globe.

 

His prediction was correct. Then, he called it king. Today, it remains. But the water in which content lives in 2017 is murky. Cluttered with clever quips, how-to video recipe tutorials and SEO-driven jargon.

 

How, then, can a brand break through the clutter and clear the waters to reach audiences in a financially sound, yet authentic way? Words matter. And, stories matter. Here’s three ways to help you tell yours:

 

1. Know your voice and own it. This one seems obvious, I know. But the truth is most brands are trying to tell stories they think their audience wants to hear. Instead, create a plan that’s grounded in your marketing goals – simply: who you are, what you’re selling, why you’re selling it, and how you’re getting there. Identify what makes your brand unique and use that qualifier as your storyteller home base. There’s something to be said about authenticity (and frankly, audiences have become quite good at sniffing out a phony). So, discover, or rediscover, your voice and own it. Your stories will show it and your audiences will embrace it (and with some hard work, they’ll click through for more).

 

2. Promote that voice.  Authentic and informative content is a fantastic way to connect with your audience…if they can find you. The second part of the equation in successful content marketing is making sure people see (and hear) your brand’s voice. So, promote it. Promote it online, offline and everywhere in between. Your content cannot serve you until it is consumed. A good place to start is on your brand’s social channels – think Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Don’t shy away from paid opportunities on said social sites either; you can maximize eyeballs on your content for a minimal cost on most channels. Also, consider uploading your content to your brand’s website or blog page – having a home base to point readers can convert content consumers into clients.

 

3. Measure. Edit. Then, try again.  How will you know if your content is working for you? Get your yardstick out and take a measure. Set KPI’s that make sense for your business goals and / or invest in measurement tools to get an even deeper look into your audience preferences (here’s a good place to start: MOZ’s Beginners Guide to SEO.  Content not working for you? Edit your angles (remember to revisit your storytelling home base) and re-write your story. Then, tell it again. Once you gain traction on a particular angle or area of expertise, use those figures as a benchmark for your follow-up pieces. With measurement insight, you can more easily see what’s sticking and what’s not. Write, promote, measure, edit and repeat. You’re on your way!

 

For more insight on how to cut the clutter and make your content work for you and your brand, connect with us at Kimberly@thepressplace.com