Content Marketing – Show Me The Money

Where To Find Budget For Content Marketing

Marketers are slowly embracing content marketing as they find push advertising less effective. With 2012 marketing budgets already set, where do you find the content marketing resources you need to succeed?

Here are fifteen areas across your organization where you can find editorial, copywriting, graphic and/or financial budget to develop valuable content marketing. Your goal is to convert existing resources into must-see, pull content consumers want and actively seek.

  1. Legacy advertising. While your business may still need advertising in third party media, assess how you can also create more effective content marketing that supports customer needs at every step of the purchase process. Utilize print, radio and television advertising development. To this end, create additional content while your developing various types of advertising to minimize costs.
  2. Existing MarketingLeverage your existing marketing with improved content. Think in terms of direct mail, catalogs and emailings. Use these communications to deliver high value information, not just push products and promotions.
  3. Corporate communications. Give your corporate communications a new look and feel to make them more effective by drawing on the strengths of content marketing. Consider your newsletters, product collateral, and other formal communications. Eliminate the corporate-speak and sound like a human being.
  4. Website. Expand the content on your website to deliver a variety of content formats to engage prospects. Integrate a blog to provide an on-going publishing platform that supports your search optimization and purchase process.
  5. Product packaging. For many products, their packaging is often cramped with must have content. Expand your ability to communicate with customers by sharing additional content via URLs and QR codes.
  6. In-store signage and other packaging. Assess how you can work together with your retail establishments to develop more engaging content where appropriate. Consider in-store demonstrations and events – live content that attracts prospects to your location. Alternatively, add a bulletin board highlighting the customer of the week.
  7. Corporate presentations. Depending on your organization’s focus, presentations may be at sales meetings, conferences or investor relations meetings. Leverage your organization’s presentations to create engaging content that can be shared, on your website, via emailings or on social media sites such as slideshare.
  8. PR. PR professionals that understand your brand and have strong writing skills that can be used to expand content creation. They can be particularly helpful with blogs and other forms of social media content. Bear in mind that press releases are condensed content that’s widely distributed. Don’t forget to use them to link to other forms of your organization’s content.
  9. Editorial. Consider how your employees can contribute to relevant industry magazines, newsletters, websites and blogs. Depending on how your organization is set up, bring in your advertising, marketing and PR teams. If you’re advertising in a special edition of an industry publication, ask to submit an article. (One of my students did this successfully for a B2B product.) Don’t overlook blogs in your category. Remember your content has to add value. Your goal is to get your name in print.
  10. Events. Think in terms of live events such as meetings and conferences as well as online events like webinars and Twitter chats. Use these opportunities to create additional content by engaging with presenters and attendees.
  11. Trade show collateral. Trade shows are rife with content. Although many attendees don’t want it, especially if they’ve traveled by air! Brainstorm how you can integrate additional content into ways prospects will keep and use it. (My favorites are photographs with your brand integrated into the photo and additional information on the paper frame.)
  12. Social media marketing. With growing budgets, social media resources are ripe for supporting content marketing because content fuels social media conversation. One of the major sources of content marketing should be your organization’s blog. Social media also provides real time content in the form of social media exchanges.
  13. Customer service. As the front line of customer engagement, work with customer service to create content to answer common customer queries and reduce phone calls. Use video and photographs to show customers how to use your product. Also leverage customer service email to promote your content marketing.
  14. Investor relations. Partner with investor relations to offer more effective communications such as podcasts or videocasts. Don’t overlook the Annual Report.
  15. Employee communications.  Many organizations have some form of internal communications. Consider how you can enhance it and use the opportunity to get other staff involved in your content development. You may never have known that Joe in accounting is a photographer in his spare time.

To expand your content marketing without a dedicated budget requires some creative thinking and good skills at partnering across your organization. Examine this list and you’ll find that there are a lot of areas of your business that either create or distribute content. Work together to maximize your bottom line!

Do you have any other suggestions as to where find internal content marketing resources you can leverage?

Happy marketing,
Heidi Cohen

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