5 Ways Social Media Boosts Your Content Marketing Results

Social Media Runs On Content

Social Media Runs On ContentSocial media runs on content, including articles, images, videos and comments.

To maximize your content marketing distribution, provide useful information that your target audience wants and needs.

It also helps if your content is entertaining.

Even better, re-envision your content so that it’s contextually relevant to the specific social media platform where you’re sharing it. Consider your commentary, images and hashtags.

As Social Triggers’ Derek Halpern preaches with the 80/20 rule of content: “Spend 80% of your time promoting your content and 20% of your time creating it.”Derek Halpern 80-20 rul2

From March 2011 to April 2012, Halpern averaged 2.54 blog posts per month that yielded almost 27,000 subscribers.

How did Halpern accomplish this?

“I focused on creating great content… and then focused on getting that content into the hands of more people.”

Social media is one of the best ways to help distribute your content.

5 Key ways social media boosts your content marketing results

Social media isn’t a once and done process. It’s iterative. You have to keep listening, sharing and participating in the conversation for it to extend your content marketing’s reach.Social Media Runs On Content

Here are 5 key ways social media boosts your content marketing results along with actionable tips.

1. Distribute your content marketing

It’s difficult to maximize your content marketing reach without using social media.

Ensure that your content distribution checklist encompasses the breadth of social media platforms that are relevant to your target audience, including prospects, customers, influencers, fans and followers.

Actionable Content Marketing Tips:

  • Tailor your content to each specific social media platform. Take a page from digital media entities that have specialists who re-imagine content to target particular social media venues.
  • Encourage your employees to share your content. Ask your employees to distribute your content via their personal social media accounts. Explain your social media guidelines and don’t forget to alert them when you publish new content.
  • Let your customers and other followers know that you’ve published new content. Send them an email and make it easy to share via social media.
  • Add hashtags to broaden your reach. Reach people who are interested in your topic.

2. Curate existing content

Many marketers only focus on promoting their newest content. They follow a once and done approach to the content that they’ve invested time and resources into creating.

Result: Older content languishes on your website, blog and other locations.

Solution: Curate existing content based on topic relevance.

Actionable Content Marketing Tips:

  • Apply metadata to your content to make it easier to find. Don’t assume that your staff will remember that it exists!
  • Schedule existing content promotion on social media. Don’t allow existing content to languish unpromoted.
  • Create regular features of curated content. Weekly newsletters or roundup posts are a great example.
  • Develop mega-content on key topics at least quarterly. Where possible, make this content evergreen.
  • Link to older content in your blog and guest posts. Don’t assume that readers will look for your related information.
  • Update existing content on a regular basis where appropriate. This is important for information that changes on a regular basis. Plan these updates in your editorial calendar. (BTW—This also helps your search results.)

3. Support search optimization

Ensure that all of your social media content is findable via search. This is particularly important for images and videos.

Think of search as your content marketing safety school!

Actionable Content Marketing Tips:

  • Optimize all non-text content for findability. Change your image names and add captions to maximize social media reach.
  • Post content on YouTube. While YouTube is a video site owned by Google, it’s also the second largest search engine after Google.

4. Improve long tail content discoverability

While social media is notorious for its short lifespan, it can help extend your content’s reach over time.

Actionable Content Marketing Tips:

  • Use social media platforms that provide useful content over time such as YouTube, Pinterest and LinkedIn’s Slideshare.
  • Add social media sharing to all of your content that’s posted online. This facilitates your readers’ ability to share your information when they see it.

5. Build thought leadership

Thought leadership is closely aligned with both social media and content marketing. Being associated with someone who is considered a thought leader increases the trustworthiness of your offering.

It’s a major reason that influencer outreach is a key element of many content marketing plans. (BTW, this article by Lee Odden is a must read on what not to do when you approach influencers!)

Actionable Content Marketing Tips:

  • Share useful content by thought leaders in your category. This not only helps you to get noticed by the influencers but also it helps build your own authority.
  • Develop relationships with thought leaders in your field. Don’t assume that there are short cuts! Do your homework and think about how you can help them before you ever ask for help.
  • Become an active member of your community. Contribute to existing communities without being spammy or self promotional.
  • Get out and network IRL. Take a page from the Ian Cleary playbook. He attended key conferences and networked. Even better, he created content with thought leaders. BTW, Orbit Media’s Andy Crestodina also excels at this tactic. He always tries helping folks.


The bottom line: use social media to boost your content marketing.

Invest the time and resources into getting the right people to see your content.

Keep your older content visible and up-to-date so that it’s relevant to your key audiences. If you don’t think that it’s worth another view, neither will your potential readers.

How do you use social media to boost your content marketing?

Happy Marketing,
Heidi Cohen

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