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Think your brand’s not a publisher? Think again. Brand publishing and content marketing are more than just buzzwords – they’re at the heart of how people are doing business today.
In today’s business climate, where potential and current customers have come to expect great content from companies, business can’t just be publishers – they have to be great at it.
They must produce blogs, magazines, videos, music, eBooks, brochures and other high quality content pieces designed to earn the trust and loyalty of their current customer bases and to attract new customers.
Brands are understanding that the rules have changed. Marketers know that they can’t just blast one-way, pure sales messaging at their target audiences. In today’s business climate, where customers have become empowered by digital and social, businesses must change the way they go about communicating with their audiences.
To succeed, businesses must find ways to engage, inform and even entertain their target audiences. A key way businesses are achieving this is through brand publishing. They are producing blogs, magazines, videos, music, eBooks, brochures and other high quality content pieces to earn the trust and loyalty of their customer bases and to attract new customers.
It should come as no surprise that many companies with big budgets have invested heavily in content marketing.
Many are doing a better job of content creation and distribution than traditional publishers. At the highest levels, Red Bull has established a publishing and entertainment arm.
Starting a content campaign can be daunting for companies of any size. To execute it well, you need to produce high quality content that serves the needs of your target audiences, find a way to efficiently and effectively distribute that content, monitor the impact of that content and then use that information to shape further content.
When you have a small budget and a limited staff, this can be especially daunting. It should be. Content marketing takes time, effort and dedication. But the payoff can be huge. By creating a stream of content that stands out from the crowd, you can:
Share of marketing budget allocated to content marketing
(based on effectiveness)
Companies often make the mistake of merely dipping their toes in the content marketing waters. This lack of commitment will invariably end in failure.
Successful brand publishers, on the other hand are investing more and more in their content marketing efforts.
Two recent studies from the Content Marketing Institute found that the overwhelming percentage of B2C (86%) and B2B (94%) companies were employing content marketing tactics.
It seems to be well worth the investment. The BtoB study, for example, found that 55% of the businesses polled would either be increasing their content marketing budgets, while only 1% said they’d be decreasing their content marketing budgets.
A comment on an article related to the info you're providing
A lengthy answer on a site like Quora
A guest article
A blog post
The same content can
be repurposed as:
When you’re just getting started, creating a mountain of content can be a challenge – especially a mountain of quality content. While you are never going to be creating content on the scale of Red Bull or IBM (SmartPlanet), you can greatly increase your volume by intelligently leveraging your content.
An editorial calendar also helps you prepare, well in advance, for key holidays and benchmarks for content creation. For example, specific content can be centered around holidays or events. Think of content geared to the winter holiday season, back-to-school, Fourth of July or even the Super Bowl.
On the calendar, include all of the content marketing platforms you’ll be employing and make a schedule you can keep to. For example, it can be as simple as one blog post every Monday, three Tweets daily, 5 Facebook posts a week, one newsletter per month and one email every Monday and Thursday.
Probably the best way to strategize and organize your content marketing efforts is to create an editorial calendar. An editorial calendar gives you the big picture and a tremendous tool for organizing, motivating and evaluating your content creation team.
The answer to this question will depend entirely on what types of content you plan on creating.
Now that you’ve chosen the content marketing avenues you’ll be pursuing and have established the frequency with which you’ll be producing content, you’ve got a huge question that will need immediate answering:
One great solution
is to bring an editor in-house, and then
have he/she manage
a team of freelancers.
If you’re looking for freelancers- try Contently!
Hiring a big in-house team can be a significant expense and some companies do not see this expense as directly tied to specific revenues. There are quality freelancers out there, and using them allows you to have different kinds of writing talent without having to build a huge in-house team.
If you’re looking for full-time journalists, try Journalism Jobs, Poynter Institute, or Media Bistro.
The good news for companies is that due to huge cutbacks in traditional media, there are a lot of amazing journalists available – both freelance and full-time.
The advantages of having someone in-house are obvious. They know your brand better than someone from the outside. They know your voice better than someone from the outside. They also have a personal stake in the success of your company.
Content goes so much further than just words.
To make your content resonate with your audiences, to engage and inspire them, visuals
are extremely important.
Make sure to have someone either on staff or at your call (freelancers) with design, photo editing and video skills. Whether looking for full-time staff or freelancers, one of our favorite places to find them is by browsing dribbble.com. On this social network for designers, you can see various projects, find the ones you like, and then reach out to those whose design matches your vision.
Fortunately design tools are getting more and more intuitive, giving fairly inexperienced designers the ability to create eye-catching work. Similarly it now costs a fraction of what it used to to create professional, well-edited videos and images. In fact, there are a host of free video editing and photo editing software packages.
Social media engagement has become the great equalizer for businesses with limited budgets. It doesn’t cost anything to comment on articles, participate in groups, engage on Twitter or post on Pinterest. These are also perfect venues for sending out links to content you’ve created.
The only real cost associated with social media is time and manpower. Fortunately, fairly junior team members can be taught the key brand messaging and it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to provide your followers with links to the content you’ve created.
Even better, use the content you’ve created to build your own audience. If consumers trust you as a place to come for quality content and trustworthy information, you can become your own media outlet, and you’ll hardly even need PR.
If your brand has a great story to tell, then there are ways to get the media’s attention without breaking the bank.
Use the content you’ve created as a hook for getting the attention of the media. For example, if you’ve created multiple blog posts showing your expertise, then link to those posts when you’re making your pitch.
Not only are you demonstrating your expertise to the media, you’re providing the journalist/blogger with readymade quotes.
Once you’ve created this kind of content (multiple blog posts), then those posts can be attached to pitches to both traditional media and bloggers. Essentially, you are both legitimizing the writer as a source and providing readymade quotes.
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Want to learn more about Contently? We encourage you to visit
Media Bistro, Journalism Jobs, or Poynter Institute.
2013 B2B marketing trends study.
2012 B2C marketing trends study.
"2020 Content Strategy" initiatives.
Red Bull's publishing empire.
"Content Marketing Revolution".
What happens when you Google
Take a look at
Read about Coca Cola's
The Content Marketing Institute's
The Content Marketing Institute's
Free tools for public relations outreach,
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