In the world of tighter budgets, less staff and more workflow, who has time to write content? How much do you have to write to be effective? Why write it at all?
A recent business study
showed that 75 percent of buyers are likely to use social media
in the purchase process, and 55 percent of business-to-business survey respondents search for information using social sites.
Remember all those social platforms you put up for your company? Better have something to say on them, or better yet, have something to pass along. Content is your currency, make it worth sharing within your target community.
Below are five ideas on how you can create expert content, with limited resources:
This is the cornerstone of a robust content management
program. Similar to a museum curator
, you don’t create the artwork; you collect and assemble it into a relevant showpiece. This involves organizing the places you’ll find your content—and that’s not Wikipedia
. A well-organized collection of useful information will motivate your audience not only to read, but also share with others.
Just ask Guy Kawasaki
. He’s a master curator, employing a staff to help sort through the mountains of information buzzing across the Web. In fact, he uses Twitter
to send folks to his website at Alltop.com
by tweeting links to his “online magazine rack.” In other words, the content he has aggregated from original sources.
Trusted, credible sources are key to curating good content. Start by building a go-to list of sites that you rely on regularly. For me, as a social businessperson, a few I subscribe to via email for updates are:
• Daily Infographic
• Ragan Communications
In addition, I use Facebook
to like pages such as Mashable.com/tech
to get all the technology news by the master curated site on the Web.
Here’s yet another way of collecting knowledge from different sources, where the aggregated collection is the value. You’ll want to ask subject matter experts in your network a specific topic-based question or two and aggregate your findings. Here’s an example of expert shared tips, which makes for a perfect published piece: Laptop Life Tips: Experts Share 10 Tricks To Make Your Computer Last Longer
Or you can take a more public poll. Facebook recently added a Poll app called “Ask a Question
.” Survey Monkey
also allows free surveys and gives you a link to drive traffic to. LinkedIn Answers
offers a chance to ask industry professionals for feedback and opinions.
Here’s a question: “What percentage of your marketing budget are you going to use on creating content this year?”
I just read a story about Big Data
and where it’s headed. Well, if I’m a systems architect
, I may have a lot to say about that. I cite the story, and then add my commentary. It’s also good practice to notify its author and build a warm relationship. Follow him/her on their social sites as well, you’re building press credentials for later.
4. Use Numbers and Lists
shows that the highest rated posts on the Web organize their content into numerical lists: 5 ways to create content; 3 top server consolidation methods; 7 of your favorite blogs. A list that is well sourced and has meaning will inspire your readers to comment and engage. No room for fluff here. Quality is the key as shown in this article by HubSpot
, “The Top 10 Qualities of High Quality List Posts
My colleague, Kathy Tito
, from New England Sales & Marketing
does this very well. In “The Bootstrap
” blog, she finds people of interest in technology marketing and interviews them Q and A style in a candid, no-nonsense way. Not only does it make for some great storytelling, but also she has acquired some great business contacts along the way.
What would you add to this list? How are you creating content with limited resources?
Anita O’Malley is a social and marketing business communications expert. She recently curated her own company, Perspectiv3. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. A version of this story first appeared on Knowledge Enthusiast blog.