How can you leverage your content online?
The following is an excerpt from Marketing Shortcuts for the Self-Employed (2011, Wiley) by Patrick Schwerdtfeger. The book has 80 chapters covering dozens of online marketing tactics that deliver results, especially for small business owners and self-employed professionals. The book is being released on June 7th, 2011. Learn more at 80shortcuts.com.
If you’re smart about content creation, you can create it once … and then repurpose it seven different ways! You can literally flood the Internet with your expertise and work less than most of your competition.
Think about your content as either beginner, intermediate, and advanced. The idea is to give the beginner content away for free to demonstrate your expertise and build trust with your audience. Your beginner content becomes your blog posts, your articles, your podcasts and your videos. The intermediate content is free as well, but only in exchange for their email address. Your intermediate content is used to build your list. And your advanced content is what you’re actually selling; it’s where you drive revenue.
Well, your website or blog is the perfect place for some of that beginner content. Try to organize your beginner content into a series of “lessons” and then write an article about each one. Always make sure your articles are at least 500 words long. If you write an article that’s longer than 1,500 words, break it into two separate articles. Are you ready? We’ll be using your articles in seven different ways, maximizing the bang you get for your buck.
If you don’t have your website built yet, don’t worry. The important thing is to realize how your content can be repurposed on the Internet. Knowing this process will help you deploy your online strategy once you start building.
Step 1 – publish on your blog
First, publish your article as a post on your blog. Easy enough. Your blog is the center of your online identity and any content you publish should also be published (or at least summarized) on your blog.
Step 2 – social bookmarking
Second, ask some of your friends to bookmark your new blog post on a few of the large social bookmarking sites like Digg, Delicious, Reddit, and StumbleUpon. Doing so will introduce your content to a huge audience who then have an opportunity to endorse it and pass it along to others.
Step 3 – blog carnivals
Third, visit BlogCarnival.com and submit your new blog post to a bunch of upcoming blog carnivals. Carnivals are like online magazines. There are large prominent bloggers on the internet who host “carnivals” about one topic or another, and they can feature your blog post within their carnival, exposing your content to their readership in the process.
Step 4 – article directories
Fourth, modify your article slightly and publish it on EzineArticles.com and some of the other article directories on the Internet. You could even use a distribution platform like iSnare.com to get it on hundreds of article directories within days. Each directory will allow you to include a link back to your website so this strategy will result in hundreds of one-way inbound links to your website.
Step 5 – ebook directories
Fifth, summarize your article into a punchy bullet-point PDF file and make sure it includes plenty of links to your website. Upload your new PDF to the many free e-book directories such as ebookdirectory.com or ebook2u.com. Yes, it’s true. There are dozens of e-book directories and their visitors are searching for information. They can find your information . . . but only if you upload it.
Step 6 – audio podcasts
Sixth, read your article into a microphone and record it. Now you have a podcast that you can register on iTunes and dozens of ‘‘podcast directories.’’ Podcasts accumulate incredibly loyal listeners over time with 90% of them listening to your podcasts at the gym, commuting to work or walking their dog. Not only that but audio content does a great job of inspiring trust among listeners.
Step 7 – YouTube videos
Seventh, get a Flip digital video recorder (about $200) and record yourself as you explain the topic you wrote about in your article. Don’t worry. It doesn’t have to be fancy. Just speak about the concept as if you were explaining it to a friend. Once you’re done, add your website address to the video and upload it to YouTube. Video inspires trust better than any other type of content. And besides, YouTube is the third highest traffic website on the internet (after Google and Facebook).
These seven effective ways to get your beginner content out into the world will cost you next to nothing (except perhaps if you need to invest in the Flip recorder). Yet very few people take advantage of these opportunities to spread their message across the Internet. By following these steps, you can take one piece of beginner content – one lesson – and use it in seven different formats, populating multiple platforms with your expertise.
This is powerful stuff. It’s extremely efficient and caters to the different ways people use the Internet. Don’t make this more difficult than it needs to be. Most people think they need to create new content for every platform. No way! That’s too much work. You could write one lesson every week or two and end up with a massive online identity within a few months.