Guide To Content Promotion

I’m sure you know this already:

  • You can create the best content in the World,
  • Solve your audience’s biggest problems better than anyone else, and
  • Share all the knowledge and expertise they lack.

But unless you get your content in front of them in the first place, all your efforts will be in vain.

The web has become a very crowded space.

According to Content Marketing Institute:

16% of B2B marketers publish new content daily, 26% a few times a week and 17% weekly.

That’s a huge amount of content and so, let’s face it, given such a vast amount, the chances for your blog posts or videos to break through on their own are pretty much slim.

 

how-often-businesses-publish

 

That’s why the best marketers spend equal if not greater amount of time on content promotion.

And if you’re wondering how and where to promote your content too, you’re in luck. Today we have a real treat for you – the most comprehensive list of content promotion channels and strategies.

It doesn’t matter if you’re trying to grow a blog, use content to attract customers to your store or new users to your app, you’ll find plenty of ideas you could use.

We’ve broken this list into 3 sections by the techniques’ difficulty. If you’re only starting to learn about different ways to promote content, focus on beginner strategies first. If you’ve been promoting content already though, you could pick strategies from intermediate and advanced sections to see which ones would work best for you.

Enjoy!

 

Basic Content Promotion Techniques

 

 

Share your content on Twitter

This is the most basic content promotion strategy …. But it works!

The moment you publish your content, copy its headline plus URL and post it to Twitter.

You could also include an image from the post plus some relevant hashtags to ensure people searching for them come across it too.

adespresso

And then…

Post it at least 3 more times throughout the day.

For one, it will help you reach your audience members in different time zones.

Two, it will also ensure that people who missed the first tweet could still notice it when you post it again.

TIP: Use software like Buffer to schedule your updates for the whole day. Or if you’re running a bigger site, plan your tweets in CoSchedule.

 

Include popular hashtags in your tweets

Hashtags are a popular way to mark or identify conversations on social media on a specific topic. They are preceded by the hash sign (#), hence their name and help users search Twitter for conversations on topic they’re interested in.

Just take a look at the tweet above and you’ll see 3 hastags:

  • #FacebookAds
  • #PPC, and
  • #CRO.

Thanks to them anyone searching for information related to these topics will be able to find that tweet.

And thus including relevant hashtags in tweets promoting your content may increase the likelihood of users interested in this topic finding them.

 

Post a longer summary of your content to Facebook

Facebook is another social network you should submit your content to. Unlike Twitter however, on Facebook you are not restricted by a 140-character limit. And thus you can post a much longer explanation of what your content is about and state the benefits of reading it.

buyer-persona

When submitting your content to Facebook however, remember that posting it once is enough. Sharing it more than once with your audience might get it perceived as spam.

 

Post your content to Google+ as well

Even though the Google’s social network’s days seem to be numbered, the network still offers some opportunities to promote your content.

Just like with Facebook you can submit a longer comment introducing your post to Google+ and give your audience a good teaser about what they might find there.

You can also tag anyone whom you’ve mentioned in the content (to do so, type + and their name) to let them know directly about the content.

 

If your post is relevant to B2B audience, submit it to Linkedin too

Linkedin is a powerful force in business. The social network has over 300 million users worldwide and is the leading social networking site for businesses and professionals.

If your post is relevant to this audience too, submit it to the site. Simply log into your account, click the “Share an update” button and type in a short introduction to your content plus paste a link to it.

linkedin-share

 

Email your subscribers about the new content

Email is the best channel for reaching out to the most engaged of your followers and nurturing them until they’re ready to buy.

When you come to think of it, these people have signed up to hear from you and most likely they’ll be interested in any new content you may publish.

Therefore, email your list to notify them of any new content.

There is however one thing you need to remember when sending content notifications to your list:

It’s easy to overdo it.

If you post new content often, sending your list an email each time a new piece goes live might result in many people unsubscribing due to overloading their inboxes.

If that’s the case, consider sending a weekly or even monthly digest of all the content you published recently.

 

Reach out to your connections to let them know about the content

Your peers, colleagues, business connections, friends or associates could help you spread the word on your content too.

Once your content is live, reach out to them and let them know about it. Depending on the type of relation you have with the person, you might openly ask them to retweet or post the content to Facebook. Otherwise, simply suggest they read it. And if they like it, they might share it too.

 

Submit your content to relevant community sites

This is a very simple strategy that could bring great results almost at an instant.

There are community sites in many industries aiming to deliver the best content suggestions to their users.

A good example of such site from our industry would be inbound.org. Another similar site is Growth Hackers.

What these sites have in common is that they allow members to submit content they’ve come across and consider worthy of sharing with the rest of the community.

Naturally you shouldn’t submit your every piece to the site. In most cases, you would quickly be banned from it for spamming. However, you could submit your best stuff on occasion to promote it to highly relevant users.

Just remember, community sites are exactly that, communities. To make the most of this strategy, spend time with other people on it. Share their content too, comment, like or vote up any articles you enjoyed reading.

 

Make it easy for readers to share your content

It’s an easy mistake:

You publish great content without giving readers a way to share it other than manually it to their social media apps of choice.

And as you can image, not many would.

Therefore, install social sharing buttons to allow users post your content to social media with a single click.

Some great social sharing platforms include GetsocialSumoMe or Simple Share Buttons Plus.

 

Ask readers to share your content

You know, that’s a common mistake too:

We often leave it for the reader to figure out what we want them to do next.

But they rarely do.

To increase your chances of users sharing your content, include a call to action beside any social sharing buttons you use.

Ask readers to share this content or even better, present them with good reasons to do so.

Here’s how Rachel Foster does that in her Linkedin posts:

3-ways

 

Tweet images from the post

Images engage users better than text.

It’s no surprise then that tweets containing images receive 18% more clicks than those without.

twitter-with-images

They also receive 150% more retweets.

twitter-image-retweets

And thus, including images from posts in tweets can increase their engagement and the chance for retweets.

TIP: You can also allow readers to share images from your content with SumoMe’s Image Shearer. This simple plugin will add sharing buttons to your images, visible when a reader rollovers the cursor over them.

social-share

(Image courtesy of SumoMe)

Intermediate Content Promotion Techniques

These are more advanced content promotion strategies. They might not be suitable for every content type and also, they often require slightly more effort to bear fruit.

But they work and you should consider incorporating them into your content promotion strategies.

 

Submit post to online communities

There are many sites allowing users to submit content for their audience to see. They also often feature a grading system for users to promote or denote content.

Some of these sites include:

An important thing to remember is that competition on these sites is huge. There are hundreds if not more pieces of content submitted to the site each day. That doesn’t mean your content will be ignored. But of course it helps if you submit mind-blowing content that gets plenty of up votes.

 

Promote your content with Facebook Ads

Paid advertising has become one of the most effective ways to get online content in front of a targeted audience.

With just few clicks you can set up an ad targeting very specific people. And Facebook is by far one of the best platforms to achieve it.

First of all, Facebook has quite a knowledge about its users and allows you to dip into it when targeting your ads.

Secondly, the cost of using Facebook to promote content is minimal.

According to Content Marketing Institute, the cost of reaching 1000 people with a newspaper ad is $32, with a Facebook ad… 25 cents.

If you’re planning to use Facebook regularly to promote content, consider using a dedicated ad management app like AdEspresso, for instance.

ad-distribution

Run content ads on Outbrain

Outbrain is a service that can promote your content in another piece of content.

The platform allows you to include your content in “recommended from the web” section you see on many websites.

outbrain

Outbrain charges you on the Pay Per Click basis and the cost per click is relatively low but, with the platform you can promote your content on many large websites, potentially exposing it to enormous audiences.

 

Promote your content with snip.ly

Snip.ly is a quite extraordinary app. It allows you to add a call to action to your content to any link.

In practice it means that you can add a bar promoting your content to any content you share on social media, for example.

This means that you could find a highly popular piece of content, share it with snip.ly and promote your content in turn.

 

Reach out to bloggers posting regular roundups on your topic and recommend your content

There’s a good reason why so many websites publish weekly roundups:

They’re easy to create and engage the audience.

If you’re not familiar with the idea of a roundup, let me explain very quickly. They are blog posts that round up (hence the name) the best content from the web and present as direct links.

Here’s how Ahrefs do it on their blog:

seo-research-trends

Notice that each item contains a link and a short introduction of the content.

To promote your content, you could reach out to bloggers posting regular roundups and suggest your content for potential inclusion.

 

Promote your content to Google+ Communities

Google+ Communities are, as the name suggests, groups of like-minded people meeting online to talk about the passion they share etc.

You can consider them a variation of a forum, where people passionate about certain subject can gather together to talk and build relations with one another.

Google+ allows to create both private and public Communities. And if you manage to find ones relating to your topic, join them and share your content with them.

To do so, head over to Google+, select Communities from the left navigation and type in your topic in the search bar.

Google will display any communities related to that topic you could join. Once in, submit your content for the others to see.

 

Share your content with Linkedin Groups

Linkedin Groups are very similar to Google+ Communities, they gather like-minded business people interested in a particular area of business, in case of Linkedin.

You can search for Linkedin Groups from the main search bar by selecting Groups as the search criteria:

linkedin-groups

If there are any groups your content might be relevant to, join them and share your content with their members.

TIP: It’s never a good idea to just submit a URL to any group. Instead share some insight about it and tell other members why the content is special.

BONUS TIP: Don’t just publish your content. Engage with the group, comment on other posts, upvote them and so on to show that you’re not merely a spammer but value the group.

 

Submit your content to Reddit

Oh I’m sure you’ve heard of Reddit before.

There is in fact no content promotion guide online that doesn’t contain this social media community.

And that’s for a good reason:

The site offers enormous possibilities to promote your content to users.

Reddit is in fact made up of a bunch of “subreddits”. You can think of them as categories users create to discuss very specific topics.

Given the popularity of the site, there’s definitely a subreddit on your topic already (you can check that by going to:

www.reddit.com/r/yourtopic

Simply find a subreddit relating to your content and submit your content to it.

TIP: Just like with any other community based site, it’s vital that you engage with its users first. Reddit users don’t take spammers very lightly and if considered one you can face not only ban from the site but some harsh criticism too.

 

Submit your content to Digg

Digg is quite similar to Reddit.

It’s another community site where you could submit your content to a specific category.

And just like with Reddit, it’s always a good idea to first engage with its users before submitting your content.

 

Look at referral traffic in Google Analytics and recommend your content to sites sending you the most traffic

You know:

Your traffic data could potentially reveal some amazing content promotion opportunities.

Take referral traffic for example.

A referral traffic is any visit that came to your site from other source than a search engine. Any traffic landing on your site through a link from another site, social media posts or anywhere else apart from search engines is a referral traffic.

And many sites sending you referral traffic could become partners in promoting your content.

Research your Analytics history looking for sites that send you regular or large traffic and see if you could connect with them, asking to mention your new content as well.

 

Use retargeting links to target visitors interested in similar content

Most companies use retargeting to rescue abandoned shopping carts, for instance. Or remind customers who visited their site about their interest in purchasing their services.

But there is another use of retargeting:

You can use it to target display ads at users who have clicked on similar content and thus, might potentially be interested in your content.

How to do it?

First of all, you need an account with one of the leading retargeting platforms (Adwords, Adroll or Criteo). You then need to create a snippet of code that you’d normally include on your page to install a cookie in a visitor’s browser that would help to identify them and display relevant ads.

But since you’re going to build retargeting list based on links users click, you need to attach the retargeting code to a link.

There are a number of platform on the market that allow creating retargeting links, i.e. ClickMeter. With just few clicks you can create a link to a piece of content that also includes a retargeting link.

Now anyone clicking it will be automatically added to your retargeting list allowing you to advertise your new content to them on other sites they visit.

 

Share your content on industry related forums

Forums are the oldest version of online communities.

Created at the dawn of the Internet, today they’re often disregarded in lieu of Facebook or other social networks.

But many industries still boast popular forums with thousands of active members who, providing it is relevant to them, might be interested in your content.

To use this technique, find relevant online forums, subscribe to them and post summary of your content as a new thread.

TIP: Since forums are ultimately the first version of community sites, they follow the same principle that members will perceive posts from someone who engages with the community as more valuable to an occasional poster.

Therefore, engage with forum members regularly before shooting over your content to them.

 

Search Quora for relevant questions and mention your content in your answer

Personally I find Quora one of the best source of research. Questions your potential audience asks could spun quite a lot of ideas for content.

But…

Quora is also a great place to promote your content.

If you’re not familiar with what Quora is, let me go over this very quickly.

Quora is a question and answer site where you can ask questions and answer queries by others. It’s the best place to find answers for what you want to know but also, build your authority by sharing your knowledge with others.

quora-questions

Questions posted to the site are organized in topics and you can follow any topic you like. If you do, you’ll receive notifications of new questions other users submit to this category.

What’s important, you can search for specific questions and find out if anyone’s been inquiring about issues you answer in your content.

You can search Quora directly or use Google to find relevant questions (simply add “inurl:Quora.com” modifier to your search query. Note, remember to paste it WITHOUT the quote marks).

quora-search

Include link to your content in email signature

Email is the basis of business communications. I’m sure like many others you send and receive hundreds of messages a day.

And many of your recipients could be interested in your content.

The easiest way to tell them about it is to include a link to it in your email signature.

Here’s how Calin from Inbound Interactive does it:

link-to-content

Here’s another example of text only link:

text-only-link

 

Advanced Content Promotion Strategies

I won’t deny it:

These strategies require a lot of effort and often need to be planned before you even create the content.

But they work like crazy.

They are in fact the very strategies many of the leading content marketers have been using to attract swarms of readers, build their impressive authorities and expand their following.

 

Include a quote from an influencer in your content

This is the simplest way to piggy back on someone else’s popularity.

When working on the content, reach out to some influencers and authorities in your field and ask them for a comment to be included in your content. Tell them what your content is all about and what question you’d like them to answer.

Note that this isn’t a roundup strategy. What you’re looking for is just one, maybe two comments from influential and well-recognized people from your industry.

Once you publish the content, email the influencer to let them know about it and ask them to share it with their audience.  Make sure that you reference them properly in the copy, link to their site and ideally also at least one social media profile to increase the chances of them sharing it.

 

Share snippets of copy on social media

You know already that posting about your content on social media is one of the most basic content promotion strategies.

But the truth is, if you only share the title and the link, there’s a chance that many people will overlook it.

That’s why you could prepare a number of different social media updates to attract your audience’s attention:

  • Share quotes from the copy,
  • Ask the very question you’re answering in the copy,
  • Tell your audience why they should read the content,
  • Mention sources you’re citing and so on.

There are in fact quite a lot of copywriting tricks you could use to make your copy more enticing to your audience. You can find a great list of them here.

 

CC your sources on social media

Sometimes the best way to promote your content is by notifying the very sources, people, companies or publications you referenced in the copy about it.

And the best way to do it is by simply cc’ing them in your social media updates.

There’s a big chance that seeing they’ve been included in your content; they’ll retweet and repost it on social media. Some might also include it in their newsletter which is an extra bonus.

 

Email your sources too

This is a similar strategy to the method above. If you’ve mentioned or referenced any particular people in your content, email them to tell them about it.

Tell them why you’ve decided to include them and how much this advice could help your audience.

Include a link to the copy but in this case, do not ask for shares or any other help with promotion. Let them decide if they want to share it with their audience (and many will do).

Asking for shares in this situation might suggest the person that the only reason you’ve included them is to promote the content (which might be the case but you don’t have to announce that).

 

Recommend your content to people who share similar content

This strategy requires good outreach skills, time and a lot of effort. But if done well, it could be very effective in spreading the word about your piece.

Here’s how it works:

You first need to find people who are not only heavily interested in your topic but also post a lot about it on social media.

One way to do it is research the people who have shared the content you came across while researching yours. Find out who shared this content on Twitter (you can do so by searching for the content’s URL), then review at these people individually. See what content they share and how often.

This way you’ll be able to make a list of potential people to reach out to.

Next, connect with them on the social network and send them a direct message with a link to your piece and asking to share it.

Note that as with any outreach based strategy, for it to work you will have to connect with large number of people. For one, only some of them will accept you as a connection. And then, only a percentage of these people will share your content.

 

Repurpose your content

Regardless of which format you published your content in, it probably won’t reach your entire audience. And the reason for that is simple:

Not everyone prefers the same content type.

Some people you want to reach follow blogs or content recommendations from Twitter. Others might be more interested in visual content and thus, prefer to flick through Slideshare for advice.

And then there are those who might prefer longer content, an ebook, guide or video.

So…

You should repurpose your content into many different content types.

A blog post could easily become a Slideshare presentation; video or you could expand it into a full blown eBook. You could repurpose an eBook into an email course or a drip campaign.

The opportunities are endless.

 

Promote the content through StumbleUpon Ads

If you have advertising budget you can try to promote the content via paid distribution channels.

StumbleUpon is one of them.

StumbleUpon Ads allow you to distribute any kind of content – articles, videos, slideshows etc. to a vast audience. You can specify the demographics of the audience you want to reach, device, location, interests and more to better target your content.

SU ads work on pay per click basis, meaning that you’ll only pay per visit.

Important thing to remember, StumbleUpon’s audience is generally in the college demographic and they’re more prone to respond to visual content than text based one.

 

Advertise on Reddit

We’ve already talked about using Reddit to promote content in front of the target audience.

But if you want to ensure that it doesn’t get lost among all the content submitted to the site every day, you can also promote it with Reddit Ads.

Just like with StumbleUpon you can select an audience based on their intersts, location and also, Reddit communities they signed up to.

 

Use Promoted Tweets

Tweeted is another social network that offers a chance to purchase clicks via sponsored Tweets.

Twitter gives this explanation of what promoted tweets are:

“Promoted Tweets are ordinary Tweets purchased by advertisers who want to reach a wider group of users or to spark engagement from their existing followers.”

 

Use guest posting to promote content

This method may seem illogical but it works:

You can drive more readers to your content by sharing advice they lack on sites they visit.

Guest posting is a great way to grow readership and audience. Posting advice on other sites your audience already follows is a surefire way to build your authority and convince them to you.

There are two main strategies to promote your content through guest posts:

Link to it or include it in the content. If the content you’re promoting is a video or a Slideshare presentation, embed it in the guest post. If you’re promoting a blog post or other text based content, mention it in the copy.

Include it in your byline. This is probably a better way. Every time you publish a guest post on a site, you add a byline, an author bio that tells readers who you are and often links to your site. If possible, announce your content in the byline to get readers go to it.

 

Sponsor articles

This is a variation of the guest posting method I mentioned above. Many sites offer an opportunity to sponsor an article or even an entire category.

If you sponsor an article or category, the site you’re working with will display banners and information about you and your content to everyone who visits it.

content-marketing

This is a great opportunity to promote big content you’ve published – ebook, report or other major lead generation asset.

 

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