To attract and keep attention in today’s information-rich landscape, it’s important to keep sharing new content with your audience. I encourage companies to publish new blog posts weekly.
In between blog posts, you can discuss and promote those posts on social networking sites like Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook, along with starting and participating in other conversations.
Ideally, the bulk of your blog content and social media posts will be planned and created to meet your customers’ needs and improve their lives or businesses (Amy Porterfield recommends that all of your content be designed to educate, entertain or empower). Ultimately, this will solidify your expertise and encourage them to hire or refer you when the need arises for what you do.
At last week’s Social Media Week conference in Toronto, Dave Fleet, SVP at Edelman Canada, suggested that along with the content you’ve planned, 10-20% of what you share might be what he calls “real-time” content.
(Note: In the weekly blogging method I teach, this would be part of the “connective content” you use in between your longer feature articles.)
Real-time content transforms something that’s happening right now and relates it back to your business. An example that many marketers have been talking about is from Super Bowl 2013, when Oreo tweeted out a timely message about the power outage.
Power out? No problem. pic.twitter.com/dnQ7pOgC
— Oreo Cookie (@Oreo) February 4, 2013
Dave noted that many companies have since tried to capture the magic of creating real-time content, but without any strategy behind their efforts. He says this just leads to a lot of ineffective content without a clear audience or outcome in mind.
— Linda Dessau (@lindadessau) September 24, 2013
Here are three questions Dave suggests when deciding whether to turn news into content:
- Is it timely? In another Social Media Week presentation, Boyd Neil, senior digital strategist at H+K Strategies talked about the trends of seamless interactivity and our digitized life. People are used to being able to immediately find whatever they’re looking for, from wherever they are, and to watch the news as it happens. That being said, with a little creativity you can distill learning and value from news items weeks or even months later, as long as you can answer “yes” to the next two questions.
- Is it resonant with your audience’s interests? Just because something seems important or interesting to you, does not mean it is to your audience. For example, when Gmail tabs were coming out, many marketers sent “urgent” emails and posts about how to override the tabs (personally, Gmail tabs have been the best thing to ever happen to my Inbox).
— Linda Dessau (@lindadessau) September 26, 2013
- Is it relevant to your company priorities? Whatever you’re posting should be aligned with the topics and themes you’ve been sharing all along, which were ideally planned to educate, entertain or empower your ideal customers.
To turn news or a trend into timely, resonant and relevant blog content for your business, step into the shoes of your ideal customer. Always be looking through the lens of what this person would find educational, entertaining or empowering. Then as you monitor the news, social networking sites, your Inbox (or Gmail tabs) and daily conversations, look for the items that match.
For detailed suggestions about tracking news and trends for blog content ideas, check out: Top 10 Blog Post Idea Generators.