I've talked about how a start-up marketing plan can be summarize in four simple words: create content, get found and outlined the most important elements of compelling content. But that's only part of the story. Now that this content is created you need to share it to get found.
Most would automatically associate that with search engines which is the most powerful way but there are others as well which I want to explore, including social media sharing on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and others, posting to more industry-specific site, working with other bloggers, and other "traditional" marketing techniques. Let's look briefly at each.
A recent study reported on Search Engine Land that nearly 60 percent of cases that end in a purchase begin with search. There is no question that ranking high in a search result is key to getting found so his is a great way to share your content. Putting some precious time into search engine optimization or even buying ads on search engines can be very effective. But it's not just a matter of producing the content, you need to build links from reputable sources to help you rank higher.
Social Media Sharing
Social media, including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and others, can make sharing very easy and the tools are free or inexpensive. You can also look into sharing your content on other sites such as Slideshare, YouTube and others, depending on format. It's easy to add links to, or within, your content so that people can share it with their friends and colleagues. The Share This button makes is easy to share your content across many different sites. Make use of Tweet This, Facebook Like and other similar buttons throughout your site, blog and content.
Many industries have sites built around a certain technology or vertical market. Quite often you can post content to these sites for free while for others you may need to pay. These sites though can be an effective way to share your content and get found by a very focused audience. However, not all of these communities are created equal so you'll want to check out how much traffic they will get for your content. One of the best ways to do that would be to see if they rank highly on Google searches.
Creating a blog is one of the more common ways to publish content but don't forget to leverage blogging as a way to share your content too. You could write many posts on how to get more traffic to your blog but one of the best ways to share you content is to do guest posts on other blogs related to yours or that target your market. This will expose your content to a new, and hopefully, bigger audience while also adding more links back to your blog and site.
While this one may fall outside of the budget for many start-ups, you don't want to forget "traditional" marketing tactics as a way to share your content and get found. By "traditional", I'm talking direct mail, advertising and email marketing (although I think it's too early to call this last one traditional). Many dismiss these tactics in the age of social media but they have been proven through time. In particular, start building an email list today so you can leverage it going forward to share content. But don't forget to use a strong call to action for your content in order to make these effective.
Combining these tactics, and others, to share your content and get found will ultimately drive more conversions. Also, make sure it's easy for your audience to subscribe to your content using RSS and email. There are other techniques that I didn't cover above but it's important to start using these to share all the valuable content you created. How else have you shared content to get found?