Your team invests resources, time, effort, and creativity into creating top-notch content for your clients. So, when you’re finally able to hit that “publish” button, it’s tempting to breathe a sigh of relief and turn your attention to whatever’s next.
But, if you think your work is done simply because you’ve made that content live, you’re sorely mistaken. Content isn’t a “build it and they will come” sort of initiative—it takes even more time and energy to actively promote it and attract the eyeballs that it undoubtedly deserves.
Unfortunately, we all know that content promotion can be one of the most tedious and time-consuming parts of the process—particularly when you need to do it for a lot of clients week after week.
However, that doesn’t mean you can skip it. If you don’t promote, your content won’t perform. If it doesn’t perform, your clients won’t see the value in your service. If your clients don’t see the value in your service… you see where this cycle is going, don’t you?
Yes, content promotion is essential. Fortunately, there are quite a few things you can do to make the entire process easier to manage and far more scalable for your team. It involves automating the tasks that you can and then streamlining and standardizing the ones that you can’t.
Here’s what you need to know to create a scalable (and less headache-inducing) content promotion process for your team.
This is part 4 in our playbook for agencies. Download the entire eBook here. Or dive into specific sections:
- Why Your Client Onboarding Process Matters
- Defining The Roles on Your Marketing Team
- A Repeatable Content Production Process
- A Scalable Content Promotion Process
- Prove Your Value to Clients With Better Marketing Reports
Building Content Promotion Into Your Topic Research
While there are plenty of promotion-related tasks you’ll need to take care of after a piece of content is completed, a smart strategy to garner some more organic promotion is to incorporate it early on as part of your topic generation process.
With this in mind, there are a couple of strategies your team can use to increase your content’s reach:
- Mention high-profile people in your content. When you use a quote, strategy, tip, or idea from an influential person and provide appropriate attribution, your team can let that person know when your piece is live. That person is far more likely to share your content with his or her audience in return for the free promotion you provided in your own article.
- Interview influential people. Whether it’s for a blog post, podcast, video, or a different content medium, actually including that high-profile person (as opposed to simply mentioning him or her) will increase your chances of having that interview subject promote your content as well.
Have your team consider what influencers they could include in content as they’re coming up with ideas. That way, you can start with a solid foundation for promotion already in place.
3 Ways to Automate Content Promotion
When it comes to lightening the load of content promotion, automation can have a huge impact. While it’ll involve a little bit of elbow grease to get it set up, having some promotional tasks happen on autopilot will ensure that your clients’ content is getting out there—without so much manual work.
Here are a few different ways that you can use automation for content promotion.
1. Social Loops
You know that evergreen content that consistently performs well with your clients’ audiences? That’s stuff that can (and should) be shared again and again.
Fortunately, setting up social loops makes that easy. Put simply, a social loop involves creating multiple social media posts that promote that evergreen content, and then automating them so that they’re broadcast to audiences on a repeating basis. This continues to drive traffic to your best-performing content.
Want to make this even simpler? Ops Calendar’s built-in social loops feature will make setting up these loops a total breeze.
2. Email Automation
Email automation is another tactic that works well for continuing to get more eyeballs on evergreen content. One thing that you should be sure to establish? A “best of” newsletter campaign.
To do this, you should look back to find at least four pieces of content that have performed exceptionally well with your client’s audience. When you have those identified, you’ll set up an automated campaign in your email marketing tool.
Over a series of days or weeks (we recommend sending one “best of” newsletter a week for at least four weeks), that top-performing content will be re-distributed to subscribers. Those who didn’t see it when it was originally published can then click through and consume that content.
It’s an easy, efficient, and effective way garner more traffic for content that has already been live for a while.
3. Retargeting Ads
Similarly to how you’re hoping to re-engage subscribers with your “best of” newsletters campaign, you can implement a similar strategy by using social media advertisements to retarget people who have visited your site previously.
You can set up these ads in an evergreen sequence—just like the above email campaign, except you’re using a sequence of ads as opposed to a sequence of emails. You can also establish a specific timeframe, which dictates how long after that person’s original visit you want to retarget them (we recommend retargeting within 14 days of that that first visit).
Again, pull out your client’s best-performing pieces of content and then setup an ad sequence to bring them back to your client’s site and content.
While it involves a little bit of money, it’s a powerful and totally automated way to get some more views from people who were obviously already interested in what you had to offer.
3 Ways to Streamline Content Promotion
Automation is great but, there are some things you just can’t be totally hands-off with. In those cases, you should still make an effort to streamline those tasks and processes as much as possible.
The more strategic and efficient you can be, the less content promotion will seem like a time-consuming headache.
1. Social Queues
At our own content marketing agency, Audience Ops, we’re big believers in pre-writing social posts. After our writers have completed a piece of content, they’ll also draft numerous social media posts that will promote that specific blog article.
When that’s done, an assistant on our team will queue up all of those tweets, Facebook posts, and LinkedIn posts so that they begin promoting that article as soon as it has been published.
By batching the drafting and setup tasks, our team is able to knock out the social promotion for each blog post relatively quickly.
Using Ops Calendar’s social queues feature has helped us streamline this process even more. Because the social posts within Ops Calendar sync with WordPress, those promotion dates are automatically adjusted with the publish date. For example, if we move a publish date back by a week, the social posts move back a week as well—meaning promotions never go out with broken links.
2. Email Newsletters
Automated email campaigns can be a great asset. However, to actively promote your new content, it’s also smart to send out a newsletter announcing each new piece of content that you create.
Before you roll your eyes and write this off as yet another thing that will be spilling off of your already full plate, hear us out—this doesn’t need to be an overwhelming undertaking. At Audience Ops, we’ve identified a few tactics that make the newsletter process far more efficient:
- The writer drafts the newsletter along with the piece of content. It’s much easier to write an engaging newsletter message when the content is still fresh in their brains.
- A technical assistant should be the one responsible for getting the newsletter setup and scheduled—not the writer or content creator. As we’ve discussed previously, it’s important to have clearly defined roles and responsibilities on your team.
- Utilize standard plain-text templates for these newsletters. They’re far easier to set up week after week, and we’ve also noticed that plain text performs much better than graphic-heavy newsletters.
3. PPC Ads
We’ve already talked about pay-per-click advertising in the form of Facebook ads but, if you’ve ever taken a crack at it for your clients before, you know that it’s easy to fall down the rabbit hole and allow PPC ads to monopolize a large chunk of your time.
While automating an evergreen campaign like we discussed can help to ease some of the burden, we also recommend standardizing your processes for your other PPC ads.
What do we mean? You should establish consistent processes for your common PPC-related efforts like:
- Ad setup
- Bidding strategy
- Targeting strategy
- Measurement process
Put simply, by having refined and easy-to-follow processes in place, your team will have a roadmap that they can follow to make your PPC ad efforts far easier to manage.
Periodic Content Promotion Processes
Although we’ve touched on some of the big promotional efforts that we’ve seen great success with, we’ve barely scratched the surface on all of the different ways that you can promote content for your clients.
There are numerous other things that—while they may not make sense to do on a weekly basis—might deserve to be built into your processes on a monthly, quarterly, or more periodic basis. Or, they could also be offered as an “add-on” service that any interested clients could pay for separately.
These periodic content efforts could include:
- Influencer outreach
- Answering questions on Quora, Reddit, or other niche and community forums
- Republishing content on other Mediums, such as LinkedIn or Medium
- Guest blogging
These can be a great complement to the other promotional activities you’re already doing and can help to drive even more traffic to your client’s content.
Standardizing Your Content Promotion Processes
There’s a theme that you likely saw pop up throughout the different tactics we discussed above: process. If you want to make scaling your content marketing business far easier (and, who doesn’t?), processes are the key ingredient.
By having those standard and predictable ways of getting key tasks taken care of, your team is able to focus on crafting great content—without worrying about what needs to be done or who should be taking care of it. Additionally, processes help you ensure that deadlines are met, expectations are satisfied, and that nothing slips through the cracks.
It’s for that reason that we made processes a core pillar of how Ops Calendar functions. The reusable checklist templates, for example, make it that much easier to ensure you’re being consistent with each and every piece of content that your team creates.Content promotion doesn’t need to be tedious and time-consuming. Click To Tweet
Over to You
You know that promoting content is important but, that thought alone doesn’t change the fact that you view it as tedious, time-consuming, and yet another thing that will take your team’s attention away from actually creating content.
Fortunately, actively promoting content for your clients doesn’t need to be a major headache or time suck. The answer lies in planning ahead, automating whatever tasks you can, and then standardizing and streamlining the rest.
Do that, and content promotion will be much less of a hassle.
Don’t forget to grab our free resource that will help you keep your content promotion process organized: