Why every Business Should Create Content and How

Here’s my philosophy on content creation. Also how to add value to demonstrate thought leadership in your space – B2B or B2C.

There are two ways you can create “content” to support a business. The first revolves around low-cost ways individuals can produce content for themselves and their company

Be a curator or…

If you’re keeping up on the news in your vertical via newsletters or reading, share them via your LinkedIn posts and Twitter updates. Don’t just post the link. Tell people why you’re sharing it specifically.

Quick and from you or your brand. Why you’re sharing and what’s the reason for someone to spend some time with it. It can be four to eight sentences tops for LinkedIn, you’re forced to be shorter via Twitter.

Twitter is where I keep in the conversation about my industry. I can share outside news three to four times a day, adding context headlines for my followers. I can share one or two quick Tweets related to me and my company. If you don’t have “new” news, just talk about your thoughts and your market space.

Then I share one or two of those things daily via LinkedIn, early in my day or later right around 4:30.

It’s easy if that’s the extent of your original “content” to create. If you’re at an event, you can turn it up a little.

Social in particular gives a great way to stay timely without it all being about releases, features, etc. Give context and value to your market and it will pay off. And you don’t have to be everywhere.

If you’re good on camera and bring personality to your organization, that has a ton of value for recruiting and credibility.

Curating is much easier than taking on the full pressure to produce “original” content. Done well, being a curator has a great ROI.

You’re skimming off the educational things you’re already doing and demonstrating your value actively without the pressure to be a publisher. Much, much easier for most customer facing professionals to do.

Be a creator of original content.

The trick here is once you set a schedule, you must stick to it for a good length of time for it to pay off. So spread it out. From my experience, set a lower bar – publishing curatorial content weekly and original market or product related short-form content twice a month.

That’s a healthy clip to start. You may quickly pick up the pace but you don’t have to. Get in a rhythm first.

People are reading on mobile, take advantage of the platform to be brief.

You can write an original article in 5 to 8 paragraphs or longer with a few pictures. Everyone has a phone and a few people where you work have an amazing Instagram account already.

That “original content” can be published on social and as accompanied by short articles on a blog. Mix it up though and think about the POV for the channel. LinkedIn you can add more context and relevance. Twitter you can just add perspective and be active.

Find the people in your org that can spend 10-15 minutes a day doing this and plug them in. It’s easy to get a small group excited and you can share from each other as well. This really gets people feeling empowered to show their customers and competitors just who you are.

You might also invest in original content creation from outside sources. That’s usually at the much larger organizations that have larger budgets.

The emerging workforce that will fuel B2B businesses over the the next few years will expect relationships to be maintained via device and in person. So companies can stand out today when they choose to at least actively show who you are.

It’s really cost effective “marketing” that’s not marketing. Much more about what Seth Godin talks about. It’s good for the culture too. It brings people to life.

Or do both.

I think the best companies are doing both. Curating with the addition of original content shows everyone you’re not going to just read them another press release every time they see something from you online. And curating alone with some personality can be done by any company.

Then when you’re in person and your customers or prospects are asking about the things they saw on their feeds from you, you’ll have even more to talk about.

It really is a win for you and your company. You get the value of people knowing you’re providing value to them. And your company gets your expertise in a way that adds credibility and market to their competitive edge. It can be done.

photo credit: The Library of Congress Florence Sutton (LOC) via photopin (license)

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