marketing channels

Across the board, content marketing is (in itself) a very involved task. It requires the creation of content on a regular basis and the ability to put these pieces of content out to the most viable audience.

Directly targeting an audience is the single best way of making your content work for you, but the issue is not about targeting the audience. It’s about targeting the right audience.

One thing that sets successful businesses that utilize content marketing from unsuccessful ones is their ability to find the right channels in which to promote their work.

But how do you figure out that you’re in the right channels? Let’s take a look.

Domination Leads to Diversity

There is a clear theme that shows up when you inspect the most popular companies that have become multi-billion dollar corporations over the years. Each one of them dedicated themselves to a single channel, whether that was sports television, printed media or some other area of expertise. This underscores the fact that dominating a single channels can allow you the room to branch out once you have managed to achieve the pinnacle of that particular market. Brands such as ESPN and The New York Times have all benefited from this type of dominance and their business is now seen bleeding through into other areas where their interests have diversified into.

What Modern Companies Often Get Wrong

A very key point that many modern companies tend to fall short when considering is the idea of focusing on a single channel. With so many different channels open for use for spreading the word about your company and garnering feedback from your audience, it can be difficult for a modern company to focus on a single target while ignoring all the others.

There are rare occasions where “tunnel vision” is a good thing, but this is one of those situations. Directing all your marketing power into a single channel allows you to put extra focus on this channel. This in turn translates into a much deeper investment and a higher likelihood that your company will dominate this area of communication.

Remember: Divide and Conquer

Colonial powers in the eighteenth century used to base their military campaigns on the idea of dividing an enemy and then conquering the small, disparate packets that cannot put up a serious resistance. In many cases it worked well and allowed the Europeans to dominate places around the world. The modern analogy is the idea of diversifying your presence into multiple channels. It will get you noticed in a couple channels, but you won’t be considered an expert in any of them.

When a larger, more directed company comes along in one of those channels you’ll just be another bystander, a victim of your propensity to diversify too early. By dividing yourself, you are making your business easier to conquer.

3 Ways To Avoid this Pitfall

the wrong content

Recent research has shown that current B2B marketers tend to invest time and effort in no less than five social channels during any one marketing campaign. Even though this gets them a lot of views and quite a lot of conversions, it has a heavy downside. It results in people considering them as a short-term fad and doesn’t garner support in terms of a solid fan base that is ready to jump in at a moment’s notice. Compared to brands such as HuffPo, these content marketers are utilizing the wrong end of the proverbial marketing stick. Developing a loyal opt-in audience is a lot more valuable to a company than a handful of single click conversions. By having a loyal fan base you avoid having to go through the process of convincing the same people each time you advertise of the same things. There are a few things that a business can aim for to make themselves more of a presence in their chosen field. These include:

1: Stop Watering Down your Content. As was said before, the more you introduce content into multiple channels, the less impact those bits of content have. You’re usually expected to produce brand new content for each arm of the campaign, so if you are adopting five social media channels, you are going to have to develop five ways to say the very same thing instead of a single, bold, decisive statement. Your impact is much greater when directed at a single target and what you should be aiming for is to produce high quality content that is specifically designed to reach out to your audience and make them feel welcome.

2: Build a Loyal Audience. Loyalty is one of the hardest things to garner online. There are just so many alternatives out there that if you slip up once, you can lose a large portion of your audience and thereby your revenue. In order to develop a loyal audience following you are going to need to focus your efforts on one particular channel. Get people talking, offer channel-specific discussions and giveaways. Make people understand that you’re dedicating yourself to this particular arm of media interaction. If you are loyal to your fans they will be more inclined to trust you in the long run.

3: Be Direct. A common misconception that a lot of content marketing plans have is that they are aiming to get their message out to as many people as possible, and that means covering as many channels and as many different niches that fall into your product scheme as is possible. There is no more effective way to dilute your message than to spread it across a wide variety of niches. For you to truly be effective, you need to pick a niche and stick with it. Direct your efforts and your content to appeal to this niche. Eventually you can diversify, but first you have to conquer your primary audience.

3 Exceptions to a Single Target Campaign

As with anything that comes under the umbrella title of content marketing there will always be exceptions to the rule of focusing your efforts into a single channel. As was said before, multiple channels allow you exposure and at the same time gives you a lot of coverage in a number of different niches. Although what you’re looking for is more along the lines of a particular audience group, there is no such thing as bad publicity. In order to increase your outreach while at the same time keeping true to your own content and marketing directives you should consider the following:

1. Guest Blogs: Appearing as a guest blogger on other blogs is a very good way to promote your utility as well as reach out to new readers and consumers that are in the same niche as your target audience. You must be careful when searching out blogs to appear on since you still need to keep in mind your target audience. Appearing on a blog as a guest that has no relation to your target audience is a waste of your time. Be discerning when choosing where you appear because by doing so you stick to the original plan of attracting your target audience without sacrificing too much in terms of diverting your efforts from the channel you’re aiming for.

2. Public Relations: Doing interviews and other public relations work is very good for your exposure. It gets the message out there that you exist and as a content-based provider, sometimes all you need to do is inform people that you’re around. You still need to keep an eye on where you do your interviews. Targeting your audience does not stop once you leave the confined of your own blog or social network. On the contrary, any work done outside of the confines of your regular blogging counts towards making your site more marketable and attracting traffic that would constitute (hopefully) people that make up your target demographic.

3. Social Media Discussions: Single channels are great for directing your efforts with the aim of dominating the niche that makes up your target audience. However, neglecting such useful tools such as social media won’t end well at all. You have to remember that social media represents the place where most people go to discuss things and to exchange ideas. Tapping into the immense power of social media platforms and networks outside your own gives you the option of attracting far more members of your target audience. Interacting with social media can be as simple as having a link to your blog shared on pages that promote to your target audience. You don’t need a dedicated presence on social media to utilize it, you just need to contact the right channels.

Long Vs. Short Term Content Perspectives: One Step At A Time

In developing a marketing strategy, you have to get the idea that more coverage is better. From a short term perspective it is a good thing to have a lot of different people across multiple channels seeing your content and noticing you. However, in a long-term marketing campaign your short strikes of brilliance in multiple social media networks are short-lived and you expend far more energy trying to do it again rather than consolidating and growing. Directing your efforts along a single channel has the benefit of getting you a loyal following. Dominating this niche audience in this channel will then allow you further opportunities to grow. You need to take one step a time, however. Rome was not built in a day, and neither was any content marketing multinational.