As writers and small business people, we use content in various ways. Most discussion is about ideas and content creation, but what about content promotion?
When it comes to promotion, some content is more worthy of promotion than others. Unfortunately, you can’t be certain about the fate of anything you produce. Some of the weirdest ideas get traffic, and the results can be far from good.
For example, years ago I “lucked” onto a viral term by accident. The luck was all bad. Yes, the post received thousands of visitors, all of whom came, read, and left. Because of all the traffic, my hosting company asked me to consider a dedicated server. Over time, that wretched post cost me a lot of money.
The result? A sharp lesson in the value of traffic. Your content doesn’t need traffic: it needs a targeted audience.
Content promotion: it’s not about the traffic
When you’re developing content for a company as a freelance writer, and are asked for traffic, be wary. Yes, you can create clickbait content for content promotion, but it’s rarely worthwhile.
What your client really wants is results. So, nail it down. Discuss traffic and results with your client, then add your client’s decision to the brief.
Let’s look content promotion which will be useful to you, or to your client.
1. Estimate value: does this content benefit from promotion?
Much of the content you create needs minimal promotion—extensive promotion of this type of content wastes time.
For example, let’s say you’re an online store and you’re creating content for holiday sales.
- Special buys, just for the holidays;
- Big sale items: the products you need to push;
- Customer-themed content, to draw customers into the store;
- EDM marketing (electronic digital marketing) for your customer list.
You may decide that only your big-sale-items and customer-themed materials need content promotion.
One essential: remember SEO for organic reach.
2. Pay attention to search engine optimization (SEO) and organic reach
The search engines are giant collections of indexing scripts; you want your materials indexed. So, always add the basics of SEO:
- Page titles and SEO titles;
- Page descriptions;
- Meta tags.
Every little helps. You may find that a description you created in 30 seconds draws wonderful and relevant traffic.
3. Link and post: plant your content into a garden
As the saying goes, no man is an island, nor is any of your content. If you don’t have time to link internally and externally judiciously, make a note to do it later.
Links ensure that your content is indexed well; this provides gateways to the content.
4. Build it before you need it: nurture social media
Ah, social media. If you’re a content creator, you know that some clients are wary of spending time and money on social media, even if you know they’d benefit.
My suggestion: when a client isn’t interested, sneak in your social media promotions. Promote the content to your own networks. Whatever benefits the client, benefits you.
Which brings us to relationships on social media…
5. Develop relationships: engage and help
Your customers expect you to engage, as well, particularly when it comes to providing support. Social media is the number one choice for customer care — every month, people and businesses exchange 8 billion Facebook messages.
Engagement takes time. Budget the time if you’re developing your own materials.
6. The content’s goal: is it action?
This post on Content Promotion Hacks has good advice:
Promoted content now will help you meet your immediate goals, while organic can help with long-term goals.
Whenever your goal for content promotion is an immediate response, use paid promotions.
You're a writer. You know that there's a market for your words, right around the globe. But how do you tap into that market? It's challenging, but social media makes sales for businesses both huge and tiny.
More info →
Copywriter and marketing pro Angela Booth maintains a busy copywriting and ghostwriting practice. Fascinated by online marketing, she wrote one of the first business books for internet marketing, published by Allen & Unwin. She’s been an enthusiastic blogger since the late 1990s.