If you’ve been reading the Bright Planning blog for a while, then you know how much importance we place on your marketing content.
It’s how you converse with your audience.
It’s how your customers keep up to date with your business.
It’s how you learn what your clients think of your brand.
Content truly is king.
But the greatest content known to mankind is only as great as its visibility.
You cannot stop at creating the fantastic posts and stories if you want to maximize the conversation you have with your customer base. Content distribution is as much a key factor in your business’s success as the content itself, and if you’re not maximizing every opportunity for distribution, you’re passing on a wealth of potential success.
Get Your Content in Front of the Right People
Who are the right people? Your target audience, of course.
That seems like a no brainer, but it’s not as easy as it sounds.
The most straightforward way to put your content in the hands of your target audience is to send it to them directly, and the best way to do that is to make sure every person in your company can access the content to pass it along.
Your employees are your best advocates, and they may run into opportunities to talk up your brand in any situation. If the HR Director runs into the perfect new hire, being able to whip out the greatest description of your company culture that’s every been written could mean the difference between signing fantastic new talent or seeing them go to work for your biggest competitor. The reluctant lead who isn’t sure your product could help them might be on the bowling team of your best customer service rep, who can quickly answer the questions they might have thanks to having the information they need. Opportunities can happen anywhere. Ensuring your sales team, account managers, and designers can maximize those right-place-right-time moments helps you distribute your message beyond the pixels we’ve so come to rely on.
Spread the Wealth
You have a lot to say about your company. Any passionate business owner does. You wouldn’t be doing what you do if you didn’t believe you could help people with your expertise or products. But if you’re speaking to the same people over and over, you’re not reaching new eyes and ears.
Consider guest posting as part of an affiliate marketing arrangement with another brand whose business compliments yours. You can give each other access to leads you wouldn’t normally receive, not to mention strengthening both reputations by putting forward a unique combination of your brands. Chocolate is awesome, and peanut butter is wonderful, but together, they elevate each other to a level beyond what they could each achieve on their own. Just ask Reese’s, who knows they’re the candy everyone really wants.
This partnership could take many forms, the most obvious being cross-posting website articles to give value to the leads reading one or the other. But it doesn’t stop there. Consider local partnerships with businesses on your block. If your business lends itself to workshops and how-tos, partner with a complimentary brand to produce instruction videos together or sponsor conventions within your shared industry space.
Use Your Biggest Tools
Social media may be a cornerstone of your content distribution, but it’s only the tip of the distribution iceberg. Is your product conducive to sample sizes? Sephora made a huge splash on their customers by offering samples to their customers. Not just any samples on some of the orders, either. Customers got samples every time, and they got to choose them from a selection of some of the best products Sephora offered. It was more than anyone else was doing, and it was generous enough for their customers to be wowed.
Up to that point, regular cosmetics consumers were used to getting samples of something they’d never try if they were given a little packet to try at all. But the company knew they had a goldmine of information from their customers just from order history alone.
By tailoring the sample choices to the individual, they opened up a whole new shopping experience for their customers. It was like Christmas whenever an order arrived.
Consider Existing Customers, Not Just New
Some of your most loyal audience members are just influencers waiting to happen.
Is there a way your company can specifically reach out to bigger accounts or frequent flyers of your company’s wares? You’d be surprised the partnerships you can form by checking out your past customers through a different lens. Perhaps they have a wishlist of products they’d love your company to create, or their next purchase can be customized for them in some way.
Making such an arrangement could result in a client so happy, they sing your praises to their friends and family, and before you know it, you’re growing, and your word-of-mouth is off the charts.
Think Outside the Platform
Distribution doesn’t only have to be digital, or even product- and service-related.
It takes a lot of knowledge to run a business, and to get where you are, you’ve picked up some expertise along the way, and sharing that expertise could bring you a whole new avenue of leads.
For example, let’s say you make the best sandwiches known to man.
You have a wonderful menu filled with the healthiest meats, artisan cheeses, and delectable breads. You’ve learned through sourcing your ingredients how to set up relationships with as many local farmers as you can, and how to create as small an impact on the environment as possible while still selling the best sandwiches on Earth.
You are an expert. Perhaps other restaurateurs in your city, or even state, would love to build their own relationships with local growers, but they don’t know where to start. If you hold a workshop to explain everything you’ve learned—cultivating the right relationships, what to look for in product quality, and avoiding imposter products that claim to be healthy but aren’t—you have a different distribution channel for your content than the traditional social media or newsletter campaign. Those who attend your workshop would know you’re the real deal, and they’d learn something from you. What’s more is your knowledge, and therefore your brand, reach a wider audience than just the people looking to buy a sandwich. Your reach grows, as does your company name.
We live in a unique time where small businesses are positioned to compete in ways that were never possible before, thanks to the internet. But in concentrating on producing great content online, some of the tried and true methods of marketing and content distribution are being forgotten.
The best of both worlds is a marriage of digital and real-life opportunities that entice your customers online and off.
By remembering the physical distribution methods as well as the digital ones, you can create content that reaches a greater number of people in the most effective way possible.