A few months ago, I listed the 7 ways content marketing can grow sales. Today, I thought I would list some of the tools you can use for content marketing.
5 Platforms for Content Marketing
Some content is best as a one-way form of communication, and traditional media platforms are great for this purpose. I prefer to use platforms that allow for more engagement, however, and I am going to focus on the environments that allow your customers to respond.
1. Company website / blog
Your website should be your “home base” for all of your online activities. I recommend you make your website as interactive as your team can manage. Blogs make great points of interaction between you and your customers. Forums on your website are another option. Keep the communication public and honest.
For businesses selling to consumers, Facebook fan pages are now a must have. (One fan page I manage has also had success using their fan page to increase business-to-business sales.) I know of at least two Cincinnati start-ups that launched a fanpage before having a company website, and both businesses were able to quickly attract business through their fan page.
3. Niche forums
You don’t hear about these as much as other platforms because the audiences are much smaller. However, properly engaged, forum members can become your greatest brand ambassadors. By choosing the correct forums, the audience is much more relevant to your business. There are forums and chat groups for almost every topic and dedicated to almost any geography. (If you want a forum for hound-dog lovers in Cincinnati, you can find it.) Seek these groups out, and earn their trust.
Many social media gurus will try to convince you otherwise, but email can be a great engagement tool. Most folks use email to drive traffic to their website, market products, or expand their readership base. These are valid objectives. However, email can also be used to engage your customers on a platform they are comfortable using. For example, when you sign-up for my marketing tips, you receive marketing short and easy to execute tips. Usually, about 4% of my subscribers respond, and this allows me to have a dialogue with several people throughout the week.
You probably do not currently use Twitter. For many businesses, Twitter is not an efficient way to engage your customers. If your business is creating great content for your other platforms, though, Twitter can amplify your reach, bringing more visitors to your content. Plus, Twitter users tend to engage more frequently in online settings, so your other conversations will become more interesting. (follow me @jpJeremy)
- 7 Ways Content Marketing can Grow Sales
- Web Marketing-How to spend less time and get more results
- Service Business Marketing: Communicate the Obvious