There's a definite feeling of satisfaction when you finish an awesome piece of content. You grind away at it, work it, poke it, pound it to fit your voice, and finally after much effort, you let out a slow and long exhale, sit back with a cheshire cat smile, and marvel at your finished work. But before you light up that cigarette in your post-creation bliss, here's a heads up:
Your job isn’t done once you hit "publish."
Whether it be a blog post, video, photo gallery, podcast, or infographic, those gems ain't gonna sell themselves, honey. It's now on to the marketing phase of the content cycle, which is lovingly referred to as “grunt work” in most circles, but here’s how to make it easy as pie.
Time Required: 1-2 hours
Tools Needed: Finished content URLS, social scheduling platform.
On Day 7, we talked about brainstorming and creating content in blocks of time. Here's a brief recap as a refresher:
- Once a month: brainstorm all content for the following three months
- Once a month: schedule content on your editorial calendar
- Once a week: produce content
Now that you've produced your content and it's all timered and ready to go live on the dates you've planned, we can work on the next phase of the process: scheduling out your social media posts for the upcoming content.
Do this in one block of time for the entire week.
Me? I schedule all of my social media posts for the upcoming week on Tuesdays.
Why are we doing it this way?
So you can get these menial tasks out of the way and focus on bigger and better things: like establishing relationships with other bloggers and creating pitches to send to brands for sponsored post content. Or spending more time with your family. You know, the real good stuff.
So let's get into the details.
First, let's talk about the tools you'll need for this phase. You’ll need a social scheduler, like Hootsuite — it’s a social media tool that allows you to link up and post to most of the major social media accounts and monitor them all from one place.
Post content to Twitter, Facebook (pages and groups), Linkedin, and now — hold on to your asses — Instagram! I have an “Pro” plan ($10/mo) that allows me to link all of these platforms and manage them from one dashboard. Another alternative that I love is Buffer because of it’s Pinterest scheduling feature. Yup, you can now schedule your Pins. #Win
Which social networks should you be on? Depends on your blog and who your ideal reader is. Finding the right social networks is key since trying to be on ALL of them is a big source of overwhelm for people, but here are some action items and suggestions for the biggest networks right now:
It’s where you post your content that evokes emotion and demands conversation. There are billions of people on Facebook, and millions of Business pages, so it’ll be hard to break in here.
Try using your personal account to promote your blog at first (pro tip: mark all of your “blog” posts as public versus friends only so anyone searching for you can see them!), or even better — start a Facebook Group!
The reason Facebook business pages are performing so poorly these days is due to Facebook's algorithms, and the fact that Facebook wants you to pay to reach your audience. Recent stats indicate that Facebook business pages only reach about 0.6% of your fanbase. Insane, right? Fortunately, Facebook Groups are not subject to these algorithms, so every post you publish to your Facebook group is seen by your group members.
Twitter is for news and business. It’s become the new RSS feed and the new global chat room. Your goal here is to create headlines that howl for attention. Don't be afraid to come up with a few different versions and post your link more than once throughout the day. Twitter moves fast, and you want to make sure you're seen.
YouTube has been the top video network since 2006, and is still hugely popular for vloggers of many industries. But as such, there’s a ton of competition. Not surprisingly, since targeting video, Facebook has crept up and in some cases, surpassed YouTube for video plays, so plan on uploading your videos directly to Facebook, too.
If your content is full of beautiful images, an infographic, a video, or some other visually-appealing imagery, submitting it to Pinterest is a natural fit. Think about why people use Pinterest: to be inspired. DIYs and how-to’s perform exceptionally well here, along with food, fashion, and travel-related content. Pinterest is the new Google, so make sure your pins are optimized for search the same way you optimize your blog posts for Google SEO.
The latest darling of the social media world (well, for business, anyway), Instagram can be used to promote beautiful images from your content, be a 15-second video of you talking about your content, or be a clip from your larger video.
This one is pretty obvious, but if your blog surrounds money, career, or building a network of professionals, Linkedin should command your attention.
For every piece of content you create, you should be promoting it several times afterwards across your various platforms. The Internet moves fast and you don’t want anyone to miss the great content you just poured your heart, sweat, and tears into. The key here is to make the same piece of content relevant for the different networks. For example:
- Facebook: Use a quote from your post that will spark emotion or curiosity in your audience
- Twitter: Make sure your headline is highly clickable. Use hashtags!
- Instagram: Create a graphic tip from your post, or use “quoteables” that are extremely popular.
- Video: Give a “special bonus” piece of advice in a video, and drive your audience back to the post on your blog
For one blog post or podcast I might post in a week:
- Two times to Facebook, once highlighting a moving or inspiring quote from the content, once providing “bonus” content in the form of a video.
- 10-12 times to Twitter with my best headlines and images
- Twice to Instagram: once with a graphic tip, once with the image from the post
- Once to YouTube as a video version of the entire post.
- Once to Linkedin with a more “business-y” angle
- Twice to Pinterest, once with a graphic quote, once with a killer image
This is why it’s SO INCREDIBLY IMPORTANT to find a social scheduler that works for you. I’ve tried a ton of platforms, and Hootsuite does just about everything I need it to do.
Decide which day you want to designate your "social media scheduling" day each week. Block an hour or two off on your calendar so that you can create and schedule all social media posts related to your content for that week.
Lots of bloggers get fearful that they're scheduling too many social posts throughout the day or week. But I wouldn't worry too much about that.
I've got TWO bonuses today to help you with this promotional process:
- A social scheduling cheat sheet that shows you how often I schedule posts for my content.
- A cheat sheet that tells you about eight free ways you can promote your blog content. Because here's the deal: you should be spending more time promoting your work than you do creating it, so study this list and start investing more time promoting your blog posts so that you can begin to grow your audience.
Don't forget: you'll get a special discount for future programs if you sign up for the FREE 30-Day Blog to Business Challenge by tomorrow, 9/15. So if you haven't yet, sign up on this page, and send it out to your friends that could use a program like this!