Content marketing is the key to building your company’s online presence. But it’s not enough to simply produce sponsored content just so you can have some. You can make or break a great brand just by the content shared with prospects and customers. We’ve determined some sure-fire ways to ignite your brand through the effective use of sponsored content marketing.
Always be authentic.
People want to know who you are and what your business stands for—not just what you produce. They want to know that they’re engaging with a company that stands for the same values that they have, and that has their best interests behind everything they do. Make sure that your brand voice and personality come through consistently in every piece of content.
Use the right tools.
Content marketing tactics include social media sites, blogs, videos, podcasts, websites, etc. Building your brand will likely include a combination of these at some time or other based on your marketing objectives. Some will be put into use more than others based on your company and brand’s promise. It’s fine to revise the tools and make them your own based on the nature of your content and the frequency of your engagement.
Consider all company information as sponsored content.
Almost anything related to news about your company can be converted into meaningful content. Customer successes make great case studies and perfect opportunities for brand storytelling. New product releases are prime content for social media posts. Thought leadership comes across well in blogs and articles. Almost everything can be re-purposed for different media in order to extend your messaging and brand presence.
Create fresh content.
Some companies employ branded or sponsored content companies to assist with content development services and SEO content creation. Other businesses have in-house teams to strategize and execute on their content strategies. Either way, it’s critical to always be developing and sharing new content with prospects, customers, and other shareholders. The influx of fresh content validates that your brand is progressive, and companies will appreciate your proactive stance.
Share, share, share.
The best sponsored content in the world doesn’t mean anything unless it’s read by your target audience. Distributing sponsored content is an art in itself because for it to have value it has to be relevant for those who read it. In order to avoid a content vacuum, determine how you will distribute your content based on the type you have—owned, earned or paid.
Especially in the world of B2B content creation, distribution timing and tactics can be critical. Sponsored content can take the form of blog posts, white papers, infographics, videos, etc. Owned content can then be shared as newsletters, followers on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc., while external content is distributed through exposure via channels like forums, online communities, and other routes.
Measure sponsored content effectiveness.
Just when you think you have content marketing conquered, it’s time to employ measurement tactics to help understand how successful your brand efforts are. Content measurement is a mercurial process at best, and companies shouldn’t expect to see immediate results.
Your measurement will vary based on the tactics and objectives, but there are some standards to work by, as exhibited in the chart below.
In the B2B world, especially, where the sales cycle can last months, it’s not uncommon to see content results for 18 months or more. One of the most important things to determine early on is what your objectives are for your content marketing. Are you looking for increased traffic, social shares or email conversions?
Content marketing is an invaluable asset for improving ROI and growing a brand. Marketers who understand the fundamental principles and continue to learn and explore will build a robust brand with a loyal following of authentic, relevant readers.