Creating a marketing strategy nowadays is harder than ever: it is tempting to think that simply producing content is enough to improve your brand recognition and boost business performance. However, a quick look at the online landscape of today will reveal that producing content is, in fact, far from the hardest part — it’s all about helping it come in the spotlight.
Our experience tells us that the ultimate goal of any company is to connect with their audience. Whatever your industry is, chances are that you are battling with your competitors for your audience’s attention — you know precisely in what areas your competitors lack and how your product is superior… however, your audience doesn’t. And they don’t really care about these intricacies; your audience, instead, is looking whether they can connect with you.
This is the riddle that marketing strategists spend countless hours trying to solve: how to let our followers/readers/users/clients know that we are special? Although strategies like clickbait and manipulation may seem alluring, they only damage your brand in the long term. Instead of racing other websites for page views and clicks, you should aim higher — create a community and engage your audience. In this article, we’ll examine the techniques and tips you can utilize to become the go-to resource for your audience when they’re looking for something.
Offer Your Expertise & Useful Content
When browsing through a constant stream of news, your audience may suffer from information oversaturation — each event results in numerous articles, most of them just repeating what others have already said. To avoid this and make your platform engaging, you need to offer your expertise, ensuring that the content is useful. Whether a topic you’d like to cover is directly related to your industry or only tangentially, use your professional knowledge and tell your audience what this event or trend really means and how it can influence our society.
To make your expertise even more clear and self-evident, you can establish your online identity — this will help your followers perceive your brand as something real and useful rather than “just another corporate blog”. Curiously enough, this is the problem we experienced when improving our own blog — we thought: “Alright, there’s no point in constantly telling our audience that we connect remote web developers with clients… so what else can we talk about?”
We then realized that we needed an identity. This term can be interpreted in several ways — e.g. design identity or company’s social media presence — but for us, it meant the scope of topics and issues we’d like to cover. We chose topics that would help our clients (contracts, hiring, and productivity tips), occasionally adding tech-related write-ups to the mix. There is no magic formula for building the right online identity that fits you. Our experience, at least, highlights that your expertise and identity should match well — otherwise, your audience may find your content dissonant.
Invite Other People to Talk
Of course, it’s impossible to be proficient in every field — and this is where guest experts step in. You can ask your in-house professionals to speak on a topic they deem interesting — a good example would be inviting an HR manager to reveal just a few tips on acing a technical interview, or interviewing the CEO and discussing the company’s past, present, and future. All in all, your in-house professionals are an incredibly valuable source of applied, real-world knowledge that your audience will greatly appreciate.
Furthermore, we can take this idea up a notch and invite industry professionals to speak (well, write) — this creates a whole user-generated community which your audience will love even more. In essence, you’ll establish a platform where your industry can be encouraged to communicate — and this puts your brand at the forefront of this discussion.
Optimize Social Media Channels
It goes without saying that social media is a powerful tool that can amplify your content’s reach — but like with any powerful tool, we should examine how to use it effectively. Social media channels are often perceived as some abstract collection of web platforms whose only differences lie in their logos.
In many cases, companies approach their social media presence somewhat carelessly: “Alright, so we’ve written a great blog post. Now it’s time to share it on every platform imaginable!” This mindset will probably not yield significant results: posting your content to all social media platforms only shows that you haven’t focused yet. Instead, you should analyze what type of content you produce and how your target audience usually reacts to it.
Generally, social media channels can be divided into two groups: “Outlets” that include Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn; and “Creative Networks” consisting of Instagram, Youtube, Pinterest, Flickr, etc. On the surface, their only difference seems to concern visual content vs. textual content — whether the use
Once you actually decide on a few social media channels, you start to appreciate how unique they are — and that your marketing strategy should be tailored according to their distinct features.