In December, I interviewed Allee Creative CEO Melissa Harrison about her marketing predictions for the new year and the one piece of advice that stuck out from that interview was all about distribution plans. As she stated, “It’s all about a distribution plan. As many of us are predicting, marketers are going to continue to create a ridiculous amount of content in 2017. However, the brands that will prove successful will have a strategic distribution plan.”
To her point, you can have the most innovative team of content creators, but without a content distribution plan, your content will likely not even be seen. A content distribution plan puts your content in front of your audience, builds relationships with them and encourages them to take action.
Ask yourself the following:
- Why am I distributing this content? Why do you want your audience to read the content you are putting out and what is your content marketing goal?
- Who is my audience? Prospective or existing customers? Millennials or Baby Boomers? Men or women?
- How does my audience consume content? Millennials might prefer social media advertisements, while Baby Boomers prefer an email—it is important to narrow down how your audience consumes content.
Once you’ve answered these questions, it’s time to craft the how, where and when your content will be distributed–your content distribution plan.
Take advantage of your paid, earned and owned media
SimpliLearn breaks down distribution channels into 3 broad categories: Paid media, owned media and earned media.
Paid channels are those that your brand pays to leverage, which often include social and Google ads, paid search and sponsorships. Owned media are the channels that your brand actually controls, such as your blog or website. Finally, earned media, is when your customers become the channel—think word of mouth, “viral” videos, industry influencers or traditional PR/media relations (e.g. byline articles).
It is important for your brand to figure out how you’re going to approach each channel and how much time and resources should be put into each.
Where do we go from here?
Once you’ve determined your goals, audience, and the channels you want to distribute on, it’s time to make your plan. Create your content using any of these handy content creation tools. Then go ahead and schedule out your content on the various channels you have chosen. We highly suggest the use of content calendars and regular check-ins to make sure you’re following through and that the content is effective on each channel to where it is being distributed.
Using Google analytics on a regular basis will also help you see which referrals/channels are driving traffic to your website. Taking a deeper diver into your social media stats is key as well as any email marketing platforms or other tools you are using to distribute. Rather than splash your content out every which way, use the stats to make informed decisions on where to post next time, how often to post and which platforms are supporting your content in the way you need for your business.
Still struggling? Why not consider a content marketing consultant? Consultants navigate the many avenues and channels by which to distribute content in order to engage your audience and create a connection. They bring the expertise of today’s marketing trends and tools to propel a brand’s identity. In a survey conducted by the Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs, businesses use an average of eight different content marketing tactics and allocate over a quarter of their marketing budget to achieve their marketing objectives through this content. I know just the team to help you work through those goals. Allee Creative can help!