If you’re in business, you’re in the business of marketing and today that means you’re in the business of creating and distributing content. While you may not be a big streamer like Disney, Netflix or Amazon, you can be like Warner Media and produce your content with a muli-purpose mindset.
Your digital marketing strategy demands you feed the digital beast and this can be an all consuming effort, especially for small business, so here’s a quick guide to maximising the value of your efforts:
Determine the presence of your brand: Brand impression and recall is hugely dominated first by visual impact and then by auditory effects, so choosing the look and feel you attach to your brand will speak volumes. If a picture paints a thousand words, imagine what video can do and we don’t need to be Mozart to understand how effective music is moving emotions. Funny, sombre, light, intellectual or irreverent, whatever flavour or style you choose, be consistent and legal.
Decide on the purpose of the content piece: Content is always determined to tell a brand’s story in a way that demonstrates the brand values and personality, but it should also have an underlying commercial objective as well. Are you seeking brand awareness, brand perception, engagement or conversions? The objective of the content can be a moving feast.
Identify the preferred channels to use: There are a lot of alternative media channels to choose from, but you will know which of them is used most prolifically and when, by your target people. Learn about the top two or three and get really good at feeding them content that delivers really useful information or entertainment value to your audience.
Identify a lifecycle of content: Create a strategy for your content to exist across multiple touch points for your people. One piece of content can be repurposed for use in multiple scenarios. As different segments of your target people may use the different mediums in different ways, repurposing and making different iterations of your content, feeds the beast as it provides different access points for your target people.
Creating your own content gives you total control of the message, format and delivery, like a video version of a custom magazine. It may help to check out some print magazines for inspiration on the type of content they offer, but here are some content ideas to kick off your digital content strategy:
- Product Introduction/Launch/Information/Referral – One of the biggest reasons people use the Internet is to conduct research, a lot of it to assist in making a purchase decision. Creating videos that demonstrate or compare your product to others, or even preview a complimentary product eg. the coffee machine and coffee, the mattress and linen, the car test drive with a destination can add depth, colour and movement to your product. Tell stories that fit your product and brand persona and build different headlines or taglines for use in different mediums eg. for male vs female, for twitter vs YouTube.
- Company Centric – This is where you announce Awards, new contracts or staff hires, relocation and cause related activities. A smaller business with local community clientele might share a deeper level of detail around what the business is doing and who is in the business eg. staff interviews to expose skillset, birthdays, holiday tales etc. Expand the exposure of your posts by pairing with complimentary businesses eg a cafe pairs with a neighbouring travel business to tell stories of the holiday. The objective here is to expose the company culture and values to create rapore with people.
- Top Tips List – (AKA listicles) These are a quick roundup of how to do something in the best way to do something. They’re short, visual, entertaining and must deliver true value to the viewer. Written or video, these lists can help establish your expertise and if used in group discussions, can stimulate discussion and engagement. Great for use around seasonal occasions or events.
- Behind The Scenes/Making Of: How do you make that hat, train that dog? What happened when you made that video post, went to that event, met that person? With a bit of forethought to have someone take good quality images/video, you bring your audience in to share an experience, understand the value of craftmanship, that underpins price, expose brand values expressed through the causes supported and exposure respect garnered from people of influence – like that time you were on Ellen and your staff filmed your arrival, green room time and from the audience! So if you were in LA, you can create your own little mini series of the event from announcing you’ve been booked as a guest, to traveling there and then ending with the appearance.
- Vlogs – Short videos are the video version of the written word blog. Easy to produce and a great way to draw your audience in and create connection – if what you present is relevant, interesting, informative or entertaining! The potential to make money from your vlogs also exists through apps like Vloggi, a UGC video library platform for the sharing economy. It’s a handy production tool anyway because it automatically edits and brands the content. You’ll make money if you have a good eye for composition and timing.
- Interviews/Case Studies/Testimonials – Anything that has relevance to your product or brand can be the basis of an interview piece, case study or testimonial. This content is useful to expose a value proposition, endorsement by association of the interviewee, product uses and applications that expand value and inspire referral. Align yourself with interesting people with products or services that compliment your brand, interview staff to expose their skill-set or share their personality. Prepare your questions and let the subject do the talking. An interview opportunity is wasted if you use the time to overshare your own viewpoint or experiences. If the discussion prompts something you want to share in detail, make a note and explore it another post. The interview door swings both ways too, you can be interviewed and seek to use the content for your brand. Both parties win when the content is shared on the others channels.
- Q & A/Tips/How To Videos – Pre-recorded guides to complex issues offer a wonderful opportunity to showcase product benefits and features, especially for complex issues where guidance is sought eg. health insurance or aged care facilities. Q & A offers a great opportunity to engage with your people to solicit questions they want answers to as you set up the recording and each question and answer can be used as a separate post on twitter, discussion point on LinkedIn or vlog item too. Tips and How To’s can raise customer product satisfaction (providing education on how to use the product eg. how to tune in your new TV) and decrease returns, refunds and undesirable product reviews. All this content can be sliced and diced to be repurposed to fit other channels and niche audiences in your target.
For social channels, keep your content brief, under four minutes for series episodes and preferably 15 or 90 seconds for programmatic. But just make sure all your content is well targeted, relevant, valued and consistent with your brand image.
If you would like to know how to make commercial entertainment or marketing content that works harder for you, contact Wanted Consulting – Reward Offered.