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#Demand13 Liveblog: Joe Pulizzi on the Content Revolution

Customers buy only after they thoroughly research their options, and social media revolves around topics often published on websites. The two forces combined have created a content marketing revolution. Joe Pulizzi shared top tips for developing quality content, leveraging emerging trends and connecting with social media.

Demand13 Joe PulizziHas your content marketing strategy stalled?

The truth is 91 percent of businesses do content marketing, but just 36 percent of businesses believe their efforts are effective.

Demand Success presenter Joe Pulizzi knows why.

Joe said content marketing takes time, consistency and 10 steps to develop relationships that result in business success.

“We don’t always want to go for the sell,” Joe says. “We want to create a relationship where when we go for the sell, they don’t mind.”

Here are Joe’s 10 steps to content marketing success:

1. Find your why

Businesses know why they do content marketing: to get leads and make sales.

Top marketers, though, examine why customers and prospects should be interested in their content and develop a mission statement.

Home Made Simple, a website by Procter and Gamble, has 10 million subscribers dedicated to reading content that enables “women to have more quality time with their families.”

The content they produce matches that mission by providing tips for doing chores quickly and more efficiently.

2. Specify your outcomes

“Content marketing is to change or enhance a behavior,” Joe says.

Producing content isn’t enough. You must know what action you hope to inspire with your content.

Include a call to action within your content. It could be as simple as directing people to more information or to check out more research materials.

3. Create a buyer persona

You’re not selling to a group of people. You are selling to individuals.

Content marketers must know exactly who they’re talking to. Create a one-page summary of your typical customer, addressing demographics and her needs.

Even though you now have a picture of your audience, refrain from making an immediate hard sell.

“Ninety-nine percent of the time (your customer’s) not ready to buy,” Joe says, noting what they primarily want is solutions to their problems.

4. Organize your company

“If you have multiple divisions or have multiple people doing content creation, you have to get together and talk to each other,” Joe says.

Joe cited SAS as an example. At one point, the business analytics software company had several departments working on the same initiative but didn’t know it.

Now the company’s social media, PR, marketing, email, mobile and search teams have a content ambassador meet regularly to discuss content initiatives.

5. Plan to repurpose

Content marketers know that no good piece of content should be a one-off.

However, far too often people think about repurposing once a piece of content takes off, Joe says. Instead, businesses should have a plan to repurpose the content before it’s published.

When Kelly Services, a temporary staffing agency, creates a story, they try to reimagine it through all its channels and turn it into 20 pieces of content.

As they produce the content, they map out what they plan to do on each of its channels and how they can adapt it for the company’s different buyer personas.

They can excerpt relevant content to the CEO on Slideshare, an infographic for the CFO and another piece of content for the Director of Human Resources.

“It sounds complicated, but it makes the process so much easier if we just plan for it up front,” Joe says

6. Use influencers

Joe’s Content Marketing Institute (CMI) had an event in Australia, so in planning for it, he targeted an Australian author as a guest blogger.

“If we make (the author) look like a rock star, what’s he going to do? He’s going to share that content,” Joe says. “I want (the author’s) group in my subscription network.”

But once you get a piece of guest content, your work isn’t done.

“Most of these influencer programs I see, they just throw up the content as is,” Joe says. “We actually go through three editorial cycles.”

The first editor ensures the content targets the CMI’s target audience, another proofs and the final reviews the title and the keywords in the article.

7. Focus on subscriptions

“I would bet most of the people don’t know why they’re in the channels they’re in,” Joe says.

And a big reason to be marketing on any channel is to increase subscriptions.

One way to deliver subscriptions to your content? Pop ups.

Four out of every five people who visit your blog will never return. CMI included a pop up and that accounts for 60 percent of its daily signups, which asks for only a name and email address.

Not only does CMI get some of its best subscribers through pop up, Joe says 90 percent of business revenue comes from subscribers.

Note: Joe prefers to keep his content on his websites and within emails as opposed to “rented land” like Facebook.

That’s because Facebook could theoretically shut down his page. He has more control over his website and email lists.

8. Social media 411

Do research to discover where your customers are hanging out when they’re not on your site and engage the influencer running that platform.

Start relationships by liberally sharing the content of 10 to 15 influencers. As the relationship becomes more established you can engage them and see if they’d be willing to be a guest contributor.

9. Give content gifts

Pain points aren’t just for customers. Your influencers have needs, too.

Take your list of influencers and try to create content that solves their needs.

CMI used this strategy and found that 24 of the 26 influencers it targeted with one piece of content shared it.

10. Leverage Slideshare

“There’s more potential in (Slideshare) than almost any other social channel right now,” Joe says. “For all you people who say I’m not going to give away content for free because I need to generate leads, here’s a great way to do both.”

A CMI presentation uploaded to Slideshare earned 62,000 views in one day and a substantial amount of high-quality B2B leads because they had the pro version of Slideshare, which allows you to add pop ups that secure high-quality leads.

For more #Demand13 coverage, click here. 

Tags : Social Media

About Brian Conlin

Brian Conlin is a content marketing manager for Cision. A former journalist, he enjoys researching and developing accessible content. When not writing, you will find him watching baseball and college basketball, sampling craft beer and enjoying Baltimore. Find him on Twitter @BrianConlin13.

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