How should you publish your content?

What are your goals?

There are so many options for publishing content that it’s easy to get overwhelmed: blogs, websites, LinkedIn, Facebook, Google+, email, online forums, etc. "How should you choose?" is really the wrong question. How you publish your content depends on your goals:

  • If you are trying to attract anonymous strangers to your website, search engine optimization matters
  • If you are trying to directly engage with potential customers, then social networking provides opportunities
  • If you are trying to channel potential customers into a funnel with multiple stages or options, then you need to bring potential customers to a landing page with an appropriate call to action
  • If you are trying to build an audience, then you need to consider where you want their contact information stored and how you will interact with them
  • And don’t forget that hardcopy printing and direct mail are still options

Also remember, you can publish in one place and promote from all.

For relationship marketing and the pursuit of contracts, the media you publish in is far less important than the way you engage your customers. It’s the interaction with the customer, whether that interaction delivers an information advantage, and how it influences the procurement that matter. 

It doesn't matter whether you distribute your content on a blog, in LinkedIn posts, on Facebook, using Google+, in online forums, or via email. It does matter whether it’s an article, post, podcast, tweet, video, or even on paper. If you want to use it to attract customers, you must make it accessible and preferably shareable. A good place to start is knowing where the customer prefers to consume their media. Do they spend time on LinkedIn or Facebook? Or would a link to your website be better? Or maybe just an email or attachment?

If you want to use it to capture customers, then the most important thing is that it has to be useful to the customer. Relationships rarely start because of an ad or description of your firm’s capabilities. They start because the customer learned something relevant to what they are trying to accomplish and engaged with you to explore how much more they might learn. It’s only once after relationship is established and found to be beneficial that they start considering things you might do together or the benefits of what they might procure.

There is very little difference in what you are trying to accomplish between relationship marketing and content marketing. The difference is in how you go about doing it and how you get your message across.

The challenges of content marketing are articulating your messages, developing relationships in writing, and producing your content. While figuring out your message is more important, a lot of struggle goes into figuring out how to produce it. The simple answer is that writers write. If they don’t, nothing gets produced. The question becomes who should do the writing.

The challenge with conducting relationship marketing in writing, is that the staff who see their role as primarily about personal contact have to become intimately involved in writing the content. That’s a big shift. You can’t conduct relationship marketing by outsourcing the contacts. You can’t conduct relationship marketing in writing by outsourcing the message, presentation, and/or delivery. 

To embrace content marketing you have to engage the people who shape your customer relationships in the content creation and production workflows. It not only has to become part of their jobs, it has to become part of their daily routines. The result will be an integrated approach that makes both your relationship marketing and content marketing efforts more successful contributors to your ability to win contracts.
 


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Carl Dickson

Carl is the Founder and President of CapturePlanning.com and PropLIBRARY

Carl is an expert at winning in writing. The materials he has published have helped millions of people develop business and write better proposals. Carl is also a prolific author, frequent speaker, trainer, and consultant and can be reached at carl.dickson@captureplanning.com. To find out more about him, you can also connect with Carl on LinkedIn.

Click here to learn how to engage Carl as a consultant.

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