Content creation can feel like a treadmill you can’t get off, especially for a small business managing its own content. Looking for shortcuts isn’t the best place to start when you want to end up with an excellent product, but there’s no shame in streamlining your process to save time and money while still creating the best content possible.
Determine What Works
It’s vitally important to measure interaction with your content. You need to know how much traffic it’s generating, how much customer interaction is happening, and which content seems to impact your sales most. If you’re not collecting this data, start now. You can use a CRM with social media integration to help you keep track of how and when customers interact with your brand on social networks. We all want to save time and money, but you must take the time to listen to your customers. They’re already telling you what they want more of.
Creating a working content plan must be more involved that jotting down a list of ideas and when you plan to write them. Start with the content you’ve identified as working well for you. That will give you ideas for topics to revisit in the future. Use buyer personas to help you identify topics of interest to your prospective customers, as well as places they’re most active with your brand. Be sure your content will grab customers’ attention by choosing topics that have interested them in the past.
This advice persists because it’s incredibly useful. It saves time and money. Yet it’s frequently done poorly. How can you get more life out of your content with simply recycling the same tired pieces? Think beyond re-writing or editing. Come up with fresh takes on existing content by changing your perspective. Create content that is optimized for particular social media networks (also known as SMO — Social Media Optimization). Personalize content to reach the customers most likely to interact with you.
Don’t be afraid to use the vast array of media available to you; text, pictures, video, and any combination of those. You can use one well-performing past blog post to create an infographic, a meme, a snap, a tweet, and a video. When you’re choosing which types of content to create, revisit your content plan and personas to determine which networks you’re creating for. Where you intend to publish is just as important as what you intend to publish.
Marketing on social media isn’t all about you. You know you need to interact directly with your customers, that your response times should be as quick as possible, and that you should be listening carefully to your customers. While you create content, you make sure it’s valuable and interesting to your customers. How does sharing content fit into the equation? Shared content also should be valuable and interesting to your followers. It should be relevant, but doesn’t always need to be directly related to your business. It’s fine to share an article about dogs if, for example, you run a pet-friendly coffee shop. Sharing content from other sources keeps your content fresh without requiring you to create original content all the time, and you can spotlight bloggers and businesses you want to build relationships with.
Hire a Writer
Small businesses owners often feel they need to do everything themselves. It doesn’t take long before you realize one person cannot do all things, all the time. Hiring a professional writer to take some or all of your content creation work off your plate is a smart move. It doesn’t cost a fortune to hire a writer, and what you do spend is an investment. You’ll be delivering quality content your customers want to interact with, driving sales, and freeing yourself up to focus more on the interaction and customer service side of content.
Producing great content all the time doesn’t have to be a constant source of stress. It’s a part of marketing your business that will become part of your routine. As you streamline your content planning and creation, always be sure to focus on keeping it fresh and interesting to your audience.