How I Prioritize My Marketing Content
More and more, I’ve been talking to business owners and marketing managers that feel overwhelmed by all the marketing channels out there.
You know you can’t possibly do it all. You believe that your job as a leader is to decide where to put your focus each day.
But it’s a lot easier to give lip service to those ideas than to live with the feeling that there’s always something more that you can be doing.
What keeps me steady and focused is having my own hierarchy that helps me prioritize the marketing I do for B. I’ve recently revised and updated that hierarchy, and I thought I’d share it with you today to see if it gives you some food for thought for your own marketing to do list.
Here’s the basic hierarchy I’m using now:
Owned content, or the content I create and publish on my own platforms, is the foundation of my marketing plan.
Time spent: It can take me anywhere from 1-3 hours a week to produce 1-2 pieces of unique content.
There are a few reasons I prioritize producing blog and email content above all else:
- It’s the best way for me to share my expertise and build trust with business leaders and marketing pros looking for PR and marketing insights for their business.
- Blogging more than once a week has been shown to exponentially increase traffic to your website.
- No matter what changes Facebook or any other social media site makes, I know that I have ultimate control over how the content on my own site is presented.
- The more I blog, the easier the content flows. When I take long breaks, starting up again is much harder. It’s easier for me to maintain a regular writing schedule to be hot-and-cold about creating content.
- When you communicate regularly to your list, it’s easier to launch. It can feel awkward to promote a new program when you haven’t been regularly providing value with content, and it should! All taking and no giving is no good for anyone. When you make a point to email your list regularly, sales emails don’t feel like a big deal. They’re welcomed by the people who have been gratefully and interestedly following your emails all along.
I also want to note here that people tend to get hung up on the difference between a blog and an email. But this is a false distinction. The words “blog” and “email” and even “podcast” describe the container of the content — not the substance. In other words, you can create one piece of content and share it with your blog for people who like to subscribe to RSS Feeds and to your email list for people who like to subscribe to email lists.
It’s like the difference between reading a book in hardcover, paperback or on a Kindle. Your audience will have different preferences, but ultimately, what they want is to read the content of the book in their preferred container.
Most business owners tend to give their email lists a little extra love in the form of bonus content or opportunities, because of how valuable it is when someone gives you their email address. It shows a high level of trust and engagement. But if you’ve been stressed out about what to put in your blog versus your in email, just publish the lion’s share of your content to both!
When I’m releasing a course or program, launch-specific content comes next.
Time spent: This can be up to 30 hours a week in the 2 weeks leading up to a first-time launch, because I do all the back-end work myself. I need a VA! :-)
Often this encompasses blog and email content, but launches often require a little extra, so I break it down a little differently:
- If I’m launching to an interest list, I don’t want to stop communicating with my main list.
- Webinars have become a big part of my launch process and require extra creation above my normal blog posts and emails.
- I tend to group any special social media content here like a new Facebook page cover (these get shown to more of your fans than regular status shares).
PR opportunities are the next step.
Time spent: Roughly 1 hour a week to pitch + up to 2 hours to follow-through on opportunities.
I used to do a lot of PR for my own business, but when I started working with clients, I let it slide.
I was fortunate. Before I opened up for PR clients, I had been online blogging and doing guest posts and interviews for years. Gosh, I was design blogging on the side back in 2010. I already had an email list full of email that knew, liked and trusted my business. People who were waiting for me to say I was taking on clients.
So I slacked off on the PR side. And it hurt. A lot.
My site traffic, domain authority (that’s the measure of how google and other search engines rank your site), and email subscriptions all went down quite considerably.
So now I’m making PR for B a much bigger priority. At this point, it only takes me about an hour or so to put together a new blog post, so there’s no reason I can’t spend another hour doing PR. I just started this up again, and I’m excited to see the results. Right now, I’ve got 5 guest posts and interviews in the hopper.
Social media comes last, if at all.
Time spent: Maybe 30 minutes a week.
I used to love Twitter so much, but social media has felt more like a promotion ground than one where people are genuinely connecting. I haven’t given up social media (for business — my instagram is full of cat photos) entirely, but I’m strongly considering it.
My plan is to run a 1 or 2 month-long test and see what happens. I’m going to track how much traffic and engagement I can generate with social media before deciding to give it up entirely.
I want to be clear that I’m not recommending you quit social media or make it last on your priority list. My friend Megan Auman gets amazing results using Pinterest for her jewelry business. This one definitely depends on your audience. You can look into social media demographics to see where your audience is spending their time.
Ultimately, I try to find a balance in my marketing between what I can track and measure and the intangibles. You can’t easily measure the way your blog content builds trust (although I do get very nice emails that help!), but based on what we know about human nature, it’s reasonable that this is a widespread conclusion and strategy. After all, trust in relationships is fostered when people show up. When they’re there for you when you need them. For me, blogging, emails and podcasting are the equivalent.
I want to be here for you when you navigate over to B, looking for something to get you unstuck around your marketing strategy or PR.
So there you have it. My marketing priorities each week. Sometimes when I have a little extra time, I take on a special project. Like this week, I made a little graphic for you to reference if you want to follow a similar plan. 😊