Marketing is, and always has been, about capturing the attention of your potential customers, building brand awareness and eventually converting this attention into business. The methods have changed, from TV, newspaper and radio, to the current world where these things still exist, and a multitude of other options have joined the market. To win at marketing in today’s world, you need to be delivering a consistent, yet platform-appropriate, message wherever your customers may encounter you.
Today there are multiple mediums and channels competing for customers’ attention. To increase exposure of your message and allow for potential customers to encounter it wherever their attention is, we suggest producing content to be published across different platforms.
This approach helps ensure an integrated and consistent message is delivered to potential customers in the likely event that they are exposed to your message on more than one platform. It also means that a customer who does not engage with one delivery method, a magazine article for example, has the opportunity to engage with the same message in another way, perhaps via an infographic.
The rule of being useful still applies
If you’re not familiar with the concept of content marketing, in a nutshell, it’s about producing content that is of use to your potential customers. Share a message that addresses a pain point for them rather than just something that just highlights the benefits of your own products or services.
If you’re going to put in all the work to capture the attention of your potential customers, be sure you’re delivering something that will keep that attention for more than a couple of seconds. People care about their own business, not yours, so position yourself as a helper, expert or authority figure in the space.
Once you’re clear on the message you’re delivering to your customers, it’s time to work out where and how you’re sharing it.
One topic, multiple places
Gone are the days when a case study is the only way you can talk about a particular job. If your business has completed a job worthy of a case study, you should be creating a suite of content to help spread the word about your project.
This might mean putting together the standard text and photograph style case study, where you highlight the project, challenges, method and outcome. You could use this to enhance future bids or as an example of what you can do.
You could also make use of a few photos from the project and overlay text on these to create a short video that highlights the challenges you faced or the methods you used. Better still, create a few of these videos that address different parts of the project from different angles. That way, someone interested in the challenges you faced might pay attention to one video that features this, when they would have ignored the video that detailed the method.
For larger or more complex topics, you could produce a magazine article, shorter blog post, a number of explanatory infographics and one or more videos around the same message. This content would then be combined as appropriate to create detailed packages of information, but also used individually as a way of capturing audience attention.
This means you might embed the video inside an article or email, but you can also use it as a standalone item to share on social media or to be housed on your website. The infographic may be the drawcard on social media to get people to read your article, or as a downloadable item in an email to help you gauge interest in that topic by particular contacts.
It takes a village
The benefit of this approach for content creation is that the information can be researched and learnt once by the content creation team, then used in multiple ways to make a variety of useful content.
A word of warning: be realistic about what any one person can achieve.
Someone who is trained as a content writer might have you covered for blogs, articles and social media posts, but you shouldn’t expect them to also be able to create video or infographics.
A fantastic designer may be able to sort you out with infographics and layout, but they probably don’t have the skills to efficiently create the volume of videos you need.
One approach is to appoint a project manager for content suite creation (or act in this role yourself), and then have that person manage the outsourcing to different specialists. Another option, and one that usually brings fewer headaches, is to appoint a marketing agency or specific team who can step in and handle all of these elements on your behalf.
Ideally you want to use the same team or agency long term, so they get to know your business and style preferences. And if they already know your industry, you’ll make your own life even easier. Let them manage your marketing and content suite creation, giving you time to do what you do best.