As a B2B marketer, I LOVE LinkedIN — some of my best friends (and prospects) hang out there. So, when I saw this on Mashable today, I just had to share LinkedIN’s ideas for creating a balanced content marketing strategy.
Obviously, you need a content marketing strategy. If you still don’t believe that, you need to look at the image from Hubspot. Posting less than 1/week you really see a drop in new customers and you see a big gain when you publish more than once a day.
But, before you quickly scroll down to view this awesome infographic, let me share my perspective on creating a snackable content marketing strategy.
Snackability is one of the 3 important elements of a sound content marketing strategy — the others are searchability and sharability.
Snackable content marketing strategy
In creating a snackable content marketing strategy, I think you have to think about your readers — duh, that’s a no-brainer. The content you create should FIT the needs of your readers — providing rich insights and value, while being snackable. That’s because readers often consumer content in short little bites — waiting for an appointment, standing in line at the grocery story, waiting to pick up the kids from soccer, whatever.
Readers don’t want War and Peace, they want something they can snack on and fill the few minutes they have to consume content.
Of course, that doesn’t mean they don’t want really great meals — longer content that fills them up. For instance, a recent study found pages containing over 2400 words were shared more often on Twitter and Facebook.
But, don’t get me wrong. Creating valuable content on a consistent basis is crucial for success in today’s crowded social media marketing world. In fact, content marketing is responsible for significant improvements to your ROI.
Creating a balanced content marketing strategy
I really like the infographic and the way LinkedIN defined elements like Desserts, Grains, Meat, Condiments, etc.
But, I would change some of this.
First off, I’d include a LOT more desserts — of course, that’s my strategy for planning my real meals, as well. In fact, now that the kids are grown, I often substitute a dessert for a meal.
My experience tells me the same thing is true for readers — they want lots of desserts. Load up your site with great graphics, video, and other easily digestible and yummy content (then get a great hosting company that can deliver your image-rich site FAST), and visitors will leave happy. Don’t just take my word for it — the link is from Jeff Bullas who shares the case study of ShuttleRock, which increased just about everything (shares, ROI …) by increasing visual content on the site.
And just like condiments add flavor and zest to just about everything, use condiments liberally across your entire content marketing strategy — don’t just drop it in occasionally. I think readers really respond to my somewhat folksy style and I certainly get a lot of comments to that effect.
Plus, as an academic, it’s just natural for me to include a bunch of links in my posts. After all, why should you believe anything I have to say? So, I like to back up my statements with facts and link to the original sources of those facts whenever possible.
Just as dietitians recommend easing up on your meat consumption and researchers show how meat clogs up your digestive system, I think your blog can easily become overloaded with meat.
For instance, it seems I get at least 1 email from Hubspot every week inviting me to download a white paper or ebook. After a while, I begin to question how ANYONE can produce that much VALUABLE long-form content every week. In fact, after downloading many of their ebooks and other resources, I’ve discovered they contain little of value, so I’ve stopped downloading them.
My advice is to provide meat sparingly and make sure it’s of the highest quality. But, don’t overdo it. I’m working with a client right now who has an entire novel he’s willing to share. I suggested we just share the first chapter, then distribute the rest of the book in smaller, snackable content marketing chunks.
Also, meat is expensive, so you should get a little more for sharing yours. I usually distribute meat in 1 of 3 ways:
- after subscribing to an email
- in exchange for sharing a link to the content to encourage others to read the content
- as a premium for becoming a member
Besides, readers think something is more valuable when it’s not just given away.
Veggies and grains
I actually like to create few posts that fall into these categories, so I diverge from LinkedIN’s advice and from that of dietitians everywhere.
You’re content should sparkle. If you don’t have something valuable to share, then don’t post anything. Now, I’m not going to say that every post I create is fabulous, but I don’t post if I don’t think what I say is new and interesting.
I don’t talk just to hear the sound of my own voice.
And, with Google’s new semantics and natural language processing, re-purposing old content can be a little dangerous.
That said, I do like to share great content from other smart folks — like the infographic below. But, as you can see from this post, I only share things that meet 3 criterion:
- They create tremendous value
- They’re unique
- I have something to add to make the content my own — after all, if I’m just sharing someone else’s content, I’ll simply Tweet it out.
So, do you think I’ve done a good job with sharing this infographic?
Do you agree with my notion of creating a snackable content marketing strategy or do you prefer LinkedIN’s balanced content marketing strategy?
Definitely grab my FREE ebook on content marketing strategy. That’s some of the meat I’m sharing with you today.
Whether you need a complete analytics strategy, some help with brand marketing, or some consulting to optimize your existing social media marketing, we can fill your digital marketing funnel. We can help you do your own social media marketing better or do it for you with our community managers, strategists, and account executives. You can request a FREE introductory meeting or sign up for my email newsletter to learn more about social media marketing.