Content marketing is a long-term investment in your company’s future, and a major strategy for gathering business leads.
It would be a shame if you invested heavily in content marketing, and then saw a low return on your investment. Your content marketing ROI is the single most important factor in determining how much of your advertising budget should be earmarked for content.
One thing is for sure: you should start devoting more and more of your budget to content writing and improving your content marketing ROI. The more relevant content you have online, the more visibility you will have. People will look up to you as a reliable expert, and trust you with their business.
You need a two-pronged approach that involves equal measures of high-quality content and aggressive distribution.
Promote Your Content – Inbound Marketing
Let’s face it, you need a large (and targeted) audience for your content in order to maximize its ROI, and nothing beats high search engine rankings for gaining widespread exposure. Here are a few pointers for getting the most return from your marketing content:
Tantalize To Optimize
To get the most bang from your content, you need to catch the attention of human readers but don’t completely forget the search engines, and we can’t stress this enough. If you concentrate your energy on only one or the other, you may miss out on the big picture.
In order to stimulate the search engine crawlers, include links on all your content pages to other pages with like-minded topics. This will keep your content circulating in the right circles, and it will silently build your database.
Social Media Can Double Your Content Marketing ROI
You know you have to get on the social media bandwagon these days in order to compete with everyone else, but did you realize there is a science to posting on Facebook and Twitter? For maximum exposure on Facebook, plan your posts between Thursday and Sunday; to get a more robust Twitter content marketing ROI , send tweets at 9 AM, 12 noon, 3PM and 6 PM; Google+ is most effective if you post on Fridays in the early afternoon, especially if you use as many appropriate images as you can.
Promote Your Content – Outbound Marketing
Without promotion, your content will just sit there taking up web space. You can aggressively use SEO and social media for lead gen, but they are strategies to develop and promote inbound marketing.
However, you also need to reach out to prospective customers via outbound marketing tactics like direct mail and email.
You have to start with exemplary content, of course, but then you need to spend at least as much time actively promoting it as you did writing, editing and perfecting it. This 50/50 ratio is the rule of thumb recommended by experts.
Once you have a blog post or landing page you’re proud of, let everyone know about it.
Here’s where you can reap the most ROI from your content. Send an email to everyone in your database that is in your target market for that piece of content, along with a link to your brilliant content and an intriguing or teasing subject line that compels your audience to learn more. Of course, it’s not a bad idea to challenge your readers to explore the topic further. Here are some good examples of email subject lines that will get your content opened:
- Open With Caution – This Email Will Make You Pig-Biting Mad
- Have You Seen This Post About Google’s New PPC Rates? It’s A Doozy!
- Can You Believe What People Are Saying About B2B Marketing? Read This…
This tactic works well with links from your eNewsletter, especially if you reward those who share your links with a free white paper download, or a discount on their next purchase. In this way, you can make your content work for you, instead of the other way around.
Use Local Media To Your Advantage
In days of yore, a smart businessman sent out hundreds of self-promoting press releases to newspaper editors near and far. Their hope was that the editor might reach for their little story if he had a space to fill. It worked like a charm, and small businessmen were able to get local or national publicity for free.
Not much has changed. Newspapers are now multimedia, and they still influence a lot of people, so try to get your brand in the news, anyway you can.
Send press releases to your local newspaper, radio and television stations whenever you publish new content, but be sure to give it a newsworthy angle. By corresponding with reporters and columnists (their email address is usually published), you can build a rapport with them. The first step is to make the media aware of your brand, and the next step is to get them talking about it.
It is estimated that half the people in the world are dying to get their names in the newspaper, and the other half are dying to keep their names out. Which group are you in? Then go for it!
Keep Your Content Current And Correct
Just as one bad apple can spoil the whole barrel, one blog post with inaccuracies or spelling/ grammar errors may sour your whole audience forever.
Enlist a competent proofreader to double-check every single piece of content and correspondence. Remember, a skilled proofreader doesn’t just scour your content for spelling mistakes. He or she also checks the facts for accuracy.
Responsive Design Improves Your Chances
You can improve your content marketing ROI dramatically by employing the principles of responsive design, and you will be sure your web page and content can be viewed across multiple platforms.
As an added bonus, using responsive design is guaranteed to help you score with the search engines, who dole out better rankings to mobile-friendly sites.
In today’s do-or-die business climate, having great content is not enough; it’s what you do with your content that counts.