One surprising thing about companies using content marketing is that they often don’t do it very effectively. Some use a scattergun approach, while others release a glut of content once a week or even once a fortnight, then they wonder why they lose readers.
Consistency is key
It seems that producing consistent good-quality content is the biggest barrier, followed closely by not knowing how to space it all out so that readers always have something new to engage them.
If you have a few good ideas for content, then that’s half the battle won, but if you don’t know how to layer them, then you’ll have some problems with your campaigns.
You need a plan
Think of your content plan as a set of levels – at the top, you have your big pieces, which come out once a week, maybe; then some medium-sized articles twice or three times a week, then smaller bite-sized content that you can deliver once or twice a day.
This means you can’t just focus on your big campaigns, because then you may have six or thirteen days of virtual tumbleweed. No-one’s going to keep coming back to you to see the same old stuff – not after the second or third time, anyway. It really doesn’t matter how awesome your fortnightly think-piece-from-world-renowned-expert is if it’s the first thing your readers keep seeing. They need variety; your big think-pieces from your WRE’s should be a highlight, not the only game in town.
It doesn’t have to be hard work
Those think-pieces and the bigger articles you write yourself are hard work, right? No-one can produce those day-in, day-out. Well, no-one’s asking you to. You bring out the big guns once a week and the rest of the time you fill your digital space with smaller guns. This doesn’t mean lower quality, though; just shorter; sometimes, you can even be cheeky and let your readers do some of it for you…
Think of your smaller chunks of content – listicles, embedded videos and so on – as the glue that keeps your readers with you.
So, what can you use as this glue?
There’s lots of different formats and ideas you can use. Start off with:
A double interview
The two people could be big fans, or even someone from your team and a competitor. It could be a debate or even a love-in. You write a short intro about why they’re talking, then just tidy up their answers!
Get out and about in the town with a camera and a notebook and ask random people for their opinions on an industry news item or, well, anything.
A day in my life
Choose a team member and get them to write a brief outline of their day (two-hour slots are best).
A video or diagrammed tutorial
These are really handy as people tend to come back to them several times, so they’ll pick up on anything you’ve added in the meantime.