1. Watch and learn
Look at what others are doing in your industry both locally and around the world.
- What kind of content do companies create?
- How do companies like yours use blogs, social media, e-newsletters and videos to create engagement with customers?
- What strategies do they use to turn content traffic into leads?
- What strategies could you use to differentiate yourself in this space?
2. Figure out what your customers like
What type of media is most appealing to your audience? What expertise do you have that could be turned into content? For example, an auto dealership could develop a blog and series of simple videos offering car care tips.
3. Do an inventory
You don’t have to create all your content from scratch. Look for existing content in your business.
You may be able to easily revise and use existing articles, brochures, presentations and client success stories.
4. Be strategic
You should develop a content marketing strategy to engage customers and tell your company’s story over time. As part of the strategy, make a schedule for publishing content regularly and be disciplined about updating it. Don’t just randomly throw things out there when the spirit moves you.
5. Find a content champion
Online marketing isn’t a sprint, it’s a marathon. It takes time to build an audience. That’s why it’s important to find someone who has a passion for your content, a knack for producing it and is committed for the long haul.
6. Avoid hard sales messages
Remember you want to engage with people and build relationships. Flogging product is a turn off.
7. Encourage audience contributions and feedback
Ask your fans to post comments, stories, photos and videos on your website and social media pages.
8. Build a fan base
Make sure your team learns and applies search engine optimization techniques (SEO) to increase traffic to your site. You can also attract and retain followers by conducting online surveys and holding contests. Contests should be designed to appeal to people who are genuinely interested in your business, not just looking for a freebie.
9. Put a human face on your business
Use photos and videos to give people a peak behind the scenes at your company and events. Research indicates that photos and video create more audience engagement than plain text articles.
10. Have fun and be imaginative
Look for something unique to offer. You never know, it just might go viral.