“Content Marketing” appears to be the buzz word for 2013. While the word, or phrase, may be showing up everywhere, the concept and practice has been around for years. Business bloggers have been practicing content marketing since the early the part of the twenty-first century.
Content marketing goes way beyond blogs now. As I’ve been working on the marketing for the inaugural Digital Publishing Online Intensive, it struck me how many ways Ellen Britt and I are using content to get the word out about the event.
If you’ve got an online event or a live in-person event that you’re promoting, here are 11 content marketing tactics you can model to build the buzz. NOTE: this may seem self-serving because I’m using my own event as an example. I want you to see how we are repurposing content in multiple formats, posting on many platforms, and using various tools to reach people.
1. If you’re hosting a multi-speaker event, have each person create an audio tip about their topic. Post the audio tips on the sales page so prospects can get a sense of each speaker. To make it easy for the speakers, we created a special number on AudioAcrobat that the speakers could dial in to and record their tip.
2. Transcribe the audio tips. Pull out one or two sentences and create a quote image you can post on Facebook, Pinterest and Google+.
3. Create a video from each speakers’ tips. Upload the video to your Facebook page or group. Then upload it to YouTube. Remember that transcript? You can also upload the text file with the video so you have captions with your video.
4. Use excerpts from the transcripts in blog posts, tweets, articles and press releases.
5. You’ll probably have head shots of your speakers, right? Create a video with the images to introduce them to the public. [Video created by Lou Bortone]
6. Create a photo album on Facebook with images of the speakers.
7. Post speaker photos on Pinterest and Google+. Remember to include a description, title of their session and the URL to register for the event.
8. Want to use more video? How about hosting Google+ hangouts with each speaker? Or use an app like Qwiki (iphone only) to make a video, like Ellen Britt did when she attended a conference along with six of our featured speakers.
9. Need a digital brochure? I recently discovered Glossi, a platform for creating digital magazines. It is so cool and you do not have to be a designer to use it. Check out the brochure I created with speaker bios and the online workshop schedule:
10. Want to go mobile? Using the the photos and text from other content, I used a free app called Yapp to create a smartphone app for registered participants. When they install the app, they’ll have the schedule at their finger tips, along with links for all the speakers. We’ll also be able to send reminders about session start times when the event starts.
11. Last, but hardly least, use your blog! Invite each speaker to submit a guest post relating to their speaking topic. It’s a great way to introduce your existing audience to your experts and their topics. Your speakers get a lot of exposure, you get juicy content, and your audience gets informed and inspired about what they’ll learn when they attend your event.
What You Need
If you study this list, you’ll see most of the content is used multiple times. The audio files are repurposed into transcripts that are used as tips, tweets, status updates, quote images and blog content.
Most of the tools are free. Use this list of free image sites for creating quotes. Yapp is free. Glossi is free. Qwiki is free. AudioAcrobat requires a fee. Your biggest expense though, is going to be time – the time it takes to create the foundational content and collect your image assets.
I know some people will look at this list and say, “This is a lot of work! I don’t have time to do all this.”
Well, if you want your event to be successful, you have to calculate how much you’re willing to do to make it happen. Personally, if I’m going to all the effort to put together an event and invite my colleagues to speak, then I’m going to do everything I can think of to make it successful. Yes, it takes time. Yes, it takes energy and yes, it will take a bit of a financial investment. What are you willing to do? Create a plan that accommodates your time and then find the resources you need (a VA), and execute.
This list of tactics is not complete. What do you do, that you’ve found to be really effective, to get the word out about your events? How do you use content to create buzz for your programs? Post your tips in the comments below!