This original blog post is written by insanely gifted Stephanie Briggs. Though it’s been heavily updated, it’s astonishing that a lot of initial information is still true. To stay updated with the latest happenings, visit Briggsby.
A lot of content marketers think of “promotion” as a phase that starts when the content is live. In reality, it’s a process that should be much earlier than it and should be running in parallel with production. In fact, the majority of the promotional work must be done prior to launch.
Here’s a strategy framework you can follow for your next content marketing campaign.
A successful promotion strategy starts with research into your target audience and creation of targeted messages. In this article, you’ll see that the more time you place into understanding and structuring, the more smooth and efficient your campaign will run.
Define Audience Types
There are many types of people who could use your content to spread the word.
The first one is the content collaborators, which can be from a collaborator who helps make the content to an influencer with a quote you’re using or an acknowledged part of a community in which you’re requesting feedback.
The other group is the bread-and-butter promotors. They include bloggers, journalists as well as business people who post links or share your article.
Now, you’ve got your amplifying devices. They’re the people who are actually taking a look and sharing your work in the interest of their own or to gain credibility in the subject.
The kind of people you select to connect with will have a major impact on the timing (i.e., If you wish to partner with a large player, you should get in touch with them earlier).
They are also likely to have very different goals, and you have to identify the goals to ensure you create the appropriate context-specific triggers to convince them to cooperate with you.
After you’ve identified the kinds of people you’d like to attract to your content, You’ll have to break down the details and conduct some studies to determine which message will be most effective.
When you’ve finished your study, you’ll want to have a clear concept of these things:
- Types of content and topics are relevant to your intended audience(s)
- The sharing and linking behavior of your outreach will help you reach your goals.
- What you can provide of worth that will earn you the share or link from each segment
There are many ways to conduct this study.
If you’re collecting data from interviews, surveys, or data analysis, it is recommended to schedule, at the very least, for a couple of weeks to have everything sorted out.
However, that doesn’t mean you need to be formal.
At BuzzStream, our planning process typically involves a discussion of the audience we’re making this content and what those expectations are. We use data on analytics from previous pieces, data about the types of content that have performed well on social media, as well as information from our conversations with our customers to help us plan our content.
Once you’ve gathered enough data about your target customers, look to divide your audience in terms of the type of messages and value-added content that will most appeal to them.
Determine Messaging Segments
Generally speaking, organizations that have to speed up their processes will design unifying messages that make sense for a huge contact list and then tweak it in small ways as they progress. In reality, this method could actually extend the time needed to meet your outreach goals due to the fact that the message is generally not attractive.
Segmenting your communication is the most effective way to boost the response to your content-related promotions.
To ensure that you’ve got segmentation correct, you’ll need to look back at your research on your target audience. Particularly, you’ll want to ensure that your message is relevant to the context and clearly communicates its value.
Personas are a great way to create help, especially in the case of managing an extensive outreach team. I’d suggest you keep an open doc that you share and take notes of the people that you’re targeting for every campaign so that your team can reference it whenever they participate in future campaigns.