Many blog owners think that regularly publishing content (even if it is optimised for SEO standards) will result in having a magically transformed website audience that will love and cherish your work for years to come. I’m sorry, but you have the wrong expectations if you think this is the case.
There was a recent White Board Friday post on Moz about content amplification which outlines statistics from them and Bitly outlining that a piece of contents half-life once launched can range from anywhere between 3-18 minutes. This clearly shows that your work is not done once you publish your content, rather there is still some work to do once you publish your content so that it can develop mass adoption.
This post is will outline a proposed content syndication process/framework that you can use during and after your content creation planning efforts, in order to maximise your earned media, whilst satisfying the following objectives:
- Traffic and an engaged audience
- Social media buzz
- SEO & improved online visibility
- Opt-in email list growth
- Online community building & thought leadership
- Brand Loyalty & returning visitors.
(credit: This list of objectives is from Digital Relevance’s Guide to Earn Media)
But before, we outline the process, there are two one important principles (to outline the fundamental truths around why we do things in the first place) that you need to have in mind.
- Content syndication starts from peer sharing and not from tribes or crowds – Unless your website has a large tribe which can spread it to the mass crowds (the networking effect) your content can never achieve critical mass or even goes viral.
2. The theory of change – people/websites are central to making your content syndication efforts effective. Understand the theory of change to regularly produce and content to a mobilized audience for the long term.
Without further ado, here are the steps towards effectively syndicating your content, assuming that you have already researched and put together your piece of content:
1. Discovery – tag your posts with the right markup for both search i.e. schema and social i.e. open graph tags to make sure that they can be effectively found and spread on the web.
2. The Teaser/s – Introduce the topic idea of your content to your existing audience. This is a tactic that magazine publishers employ on their cover to encourage visitors to go to specific sections of a magazine. From a digital perspective this can be done via several methods:
- Introducing and pushing the content topic idea straight up on your website and owned properties well in advance of the launch. Think about how movie producers release trailers in order to introduce the story of their movie. From a digital perspective, it might be using a similar method, using PR or through engagement and link building on existing communities online.
- Coming up with topically related initiatives i.e. surveys, polls to build anticipation & hype.
Ideally, allot of this will be devised as part of an over-encompassing strategy for key website posts that would involve many members, an editorial calendar, and all digital channels.
3. Seed – Get your ducks in the row and spread the topics to people whom you know will spread this online once it launches and include the teasers if necessary. This might be anyone from your family members, to influential colleagues, business and or/direct industry partners, but essentially sharing content to peers who you know will promote this once the full content centerpiece is launch and have their own tribes relevant to your mission. They are also critical in getting initial feedback for your work, so spend time engaging with them and the ideal people you want to promote your content by answering their questions and being open to their suggestions.
4. Launch full content piece – Launch the content on your site in a unique hub.
5. Promotion – Notify and share the content with your peers and existing audience members via your owned properties. Push RSS feed updates of your launched content to existing content/media syndication partners i.e. editorial/news sites. Conduct manual submissions to niche sites or communities who you think will also value the content or work that you have produced and new users that have popped up.
6. Amplification & Deep Connection – Amplify your content topic by curating your content with other timely articles on other sites, Repurpose your content into different content formats in order to expand your reach (including for link building) and if within your means conduct paid promotion with content promotional tools i.e. Outbrain.
When thinking about connecting with your audience launch topic related events that help build loyalty via other sites can guest blogging/co-authoring initiatives on other sites blogs. Use your website and tools on your website in order to personalize the experience of how people consume the content i.e. allowing people to contribute back to your ideas via guest opinions, social creating widgets on the site which provide recommended articles for users to stay
Amalgamate all the successful elements of the campaign back into to the central category hub as an evergreen content resource which can be timeless and constantly encourage new visitors to the site.
8. Repeat –
Consistently deploy iterative campaigns around that topic and objectives, however gradually accelerate the timeline of launching these content pieces in order to overlap with the previous campaign.
Doing this provides two benefits:
- It reduces the risk of your campaign failing as existing visitors are already familiar with the topic
- It helps build loyalty and returning visitors to the site.