In 2013 we saw a huge push for the right content appearing in the right context. If content is King then context has to be throne in which that king sits. It makes all the difference. Marketers learned that content created for Facebook doesn’t work on Twitter just as-is. Pinterest-specific content duplicated for Twitter was unappealing. We learned that the more “native” the content is to its context (social media platform) the more effective it will be in accomplishing its goals. So here we are, in a new year – a new opportunity to be smart about the way we market our content using social media.
I titled this post #ContentWars, not because it’s a bad thing, but because it can sometimes be a struggle for online publishing companies who have a lot of content they want the world to see. What goes on our website or blog? What goes to Social? What goes into our email newsletter? What content and where?
Let’s take a look at 3 specific hubs where your content will appear in 2014:
Your website is your home base. It’s where you do business. It’s where you convert leads to customers. It’s where you let your product or service shine. Its role can vary from first impression to deal closer. Whether you are posting articles or blog posts on a regular basis, it is extremely important that your website function as your Content Hub. We build our client’s websites using WordPress as the CMS. One of the main reasons for doing so is the ease of use when it comes to publishing content effectively. We believe that your web content should drive, inform and create content for all other publishing platforms like social media and email.
Social Media websites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest must function as Embassies to your brand. Think of them as extensions and extenders of your brand. Think of them as a magnet pulling people into your culture and where you do business – your website. Your web content must be repurposed for social so that it pulls people into the full story. For example, the easy thing to do would be to write a blog post, then copy the link, paste it into a status update, click “Post” and call it a day. Sure, you shared your blog content to a social network. No, you didn’t do it effectively or natively. We live in a visual society and visual content is a must for any social network these days. When you are wanting to bring awareness to your blog content through social media it’s very important to create engaging graphics to post along with the link to your blog. To go along with your graphics, your status update still needs to draw folks into your update. Whether using humor, shock or just solid and valuable information. Most of the time simply writing the Post Title again as the status update itself won’t get it done. Think creatively. Think natively. Why do you click links on social media? What pulls you in? Think like your customers.
When taking your content from your website (articles or blog posts) to an email list, the goal remains the same – You want the vehicle of email to take your readers (who have opted in) for a ride to the full story on your website. You don’t want to give them absolutely everything here, just enough to peak their interest and click to read the rest. With this in mind, your email could be a weekly roundup of the top blogs for that week. Or the only 3 new articles that were published that week. It could also be a daily publication that ties back to new content on your site each and every day.
Your CTAs (calls-to-action) will need to be very prominent in your email. If you are highlighting multiple stories, you’ll need a CTA button or link with every story. Obviously these will need to direct back to the content and full story on your website. Don’t just assume the reader will know what to do next. At the same time, don’t clutter your email. We recommend using a service like MailChimp to send beautiful email.
This is where it can get a little tricky because in either situation you are not linking to your home base. You’re linking from embassy to embassy. In my experience most of the time the purpose of linking between these two is to either build the email list or build the social network fan or follower base. It is very CTA-based, meaning you will always have a point of action for your reader to take. A newsletter to sign up for, a Twitter account to follow, and so on.
When we reach that moment of “Cyclical Content Utopia” we have a lot of content vehicles driving around, but they are all purposeful and aimed at the same target. More importantly, they are all sharing your content in a very native way – in a voice that just fits and feels right. It may be the same article appearing in all places, but the inbound links are manifested in a way that hits the user demographic right between the eyes.
If your content isn’t native to its context, you’re doing it wrong. [Tweet this]
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