The content marketing revolution is a reality, so how do you take advantage of its beneficial results as a representative of a small or medium-sized business? Learn from experienced publishers!
Joe Pulizzi, the evangelist for content marketing, encourages small or medium-sized companies to take part in the content marketing revolution. In his opinion, an entrepreneur who creates content is different from a publisher, in only one aspect: the way of earning money. See how experienced publishers use various successfully adopted rules in content marketing, and follow their example:
1. Start with a publishing mission
In the case of the company mission and its publishing activity, it is necessary to say a few words in both about “what for” and “for whom”. This will be the principle statement from you, and an informative message for your recipients.
Let’s see how one on-line magazine, INC, does it. Both short and precise, they write on their website – “We invite you to Inc.com – where entrepreneurs and owners of small companies may find useful information, advice and insights regarding running a business”.
And how do companies do it? Joe Pulizzi gave the example of the Indium Corporation whose blog “helps engineers answer the most challenging industrial problems.” Why does All 4 Comms run a blog? To help companies create content that will tell the story of their brand.
2. Find contact points with your audience
Act as a professional publisher and write about things that are important for your reader, not for you. There are fewer things interesting for the audience than for you – more than you could even suppose! Joe Pulizzi calls them ”sweet spots” and encourages us to discover them.
An example of a “sweet spot” from the Polish press is, “Wysokie Obcasy” (High Heels), a supplement to the most popular Polish daily, which recently published a series called “Kobiety w Polsce” (Women in Poland), an article about 30 and 40-year-olds! “Good writing (and therefore crafting good experiences) requires us to understand and have empathy for our audience, their situation, their needs and goals”, says Jonathon Colman of Facebook.
3. Develop (pathological) empathy
How do you approach content marketing in the most effective way? Ann Handley from Marketing Profs, in her recently published book “Everybody Writes”, advises us to develop pathological empathy. How do we do this? By taking examples from journalists! Journalists look for their heroes in companies, schools and on the streets. They prepare “sympathising” reports, by talking with the main characters, and interviewing witnesses. Follow their example and spend some time with your clients and potential customers.
4. Write simple, but not simplistic texts
Business and life may be very complicated. However, as Ann Handley says, “good content deconstructs the complex to make it easily understood”. No matter that you are writing to specialists or to amateurs, use simple, concise language. Assume that your readers do not know anything. However, do NOT assume that they are stupid!
If you think that your B2B concept is too complicated to present in a simple way, look at the first paragraphs of The Economist magazine style guide: “The first requirement of The Economist is that it should be readily understandable. Clarity of writing usually follows clarity of thought. So think about what you want to say, then say it as simply as possible.”
5. Employ your readers
Content marketing may have various faces and forms. Do you remember letters to editors? This is the oldest example of “user-generated content”! Apart from the content created by the brand, use stories from your client’s life and work experiences. In Poland, an example of such an activity is the Antyweb blogging platform, which “employs” readers to produce content through a special blogging platform.
However, before you ask your community for something, you must first invest in your relationships. Give something first. Remember about understandable form. Photos accompanying texts should be like “appetizers” – short and intense.
Do you want to know how we create content? Contact us, and check out what we can do for you!