What's the most important part of the content marketing process - but also the one you pay the least attention to?
Or some of us call it content distribution.
Which is ironic because we never spend enough time sharing our content.
That's okay - because I was exactly the same.
UNTIL I WASN'T!
Okay, we've got the CAPS out here. And for a good reason.
It wasn't until I documented exactly where I would share my content that I could class myself as "good" at content promotion.
Over the last 5 years, I've collated places that do and don't work for different types of content.
And now I share those places with you.
Using my content promotion tracker, you get 50 different instructions on how to distribute your content.
Instead of wondering where to share your content next (or at all), use this tracker as a prompt to share content in new places - and track your performance as you learn about the distribution areas for your own content.
The premise is simple (it's a Google Sheet or Notion board - and I made an Excel version for those who don't operate outside the Microsoft stack but I do urge you to choose the Google or Notion version).
But nobody does this because it takes forever to:
1) Trial where does and doesn't work.
2) Document your process when busy promoting content
3) Get free time to dedicate to content promotion because you're busy creating.
Each content distribution technique includes an instruction, a description of how to share, an example of that technique in the real world, and some columns you can customise for tracking purposes.
Who is this content promotion checklist for?
The cop-out answer is "all marketers". In fact, this checklist can be used by anybody who creates content and wants it to be seen.
Why you wouldn't want content you spent time and effort on not to be seen is a crazy notion that I can't comprehend. But, hey, some people just leave their post there.
Don't be one of those people.
This template is for you if you are a:
- Content marketer
- Outreach manager
- Affiliate marketer
- Social media manager
- Founder of a startup
- Manager of a small business
- Marketing agency owner
- Video producer
- Graphic designer
...you get the idea, right?
Content promotion isn't a job just for the marketing team. There are benefits for everyone.
Benefits of content promotion
If, like me and thousands of others, your primary channel is organic traffic, how would you like to add 67% more traffic?
Especially true in the case of low-volume keywords you're targetting, sharing content (without paying for adverts) is incredibly powerful and delivers near-immediate results.
Check out this post that ranks top of page 1 on Google. Without content promotion efforts, it would only have 33% of the views it does today.
The obvious benefit of content promotion is that your content gets seen.
Ross Simonds, CEO at Foundation, is a big believer in this:
If your SEO isn't great or is still a work-in-progress, content promotion is a must. If you can't hit page 1 of Google, who else is going to see your content?
Yet, there are still tons of objections to content promotion. I've documented the most common ones here:
Objections to content promotion
1 - SEO is our main channel so we don't need to promote elsewhere.
A: Same here. But one very scary October in 2020 taught me that Google can de-index all your posts by mistake. I will never take that risk again.
There's also the enormous benefit that content promotion has on SEO. The more people that see your content, the more potential links you gain. Why spend time on cold backlink building when you could share your content, gain views, and potentially gain links from an engaged audience?
2 - I don't have time to promote content because I'm always creating.
A - Same here. Until I documented where to share, it would take AGES to simply find somewhere to promote my content. Now I have a list of where to share and what to do at each stage, I spend a few hours on content promotion instead of days finding places to share without getting views or conversions.
3 - Our social media is fine. We don't need to promote anywhere.
A - Same here. But who wants to be just fine? In a world of doomscrolling and when capturing people's attention is harder than ever, why limit yourself? In this tracker, 50 different ways of sharing your content exist - so 2 or 3 is really the tip of the iceberg.
4 - It's not time yet.
When you're product isn't ready or you're an early-stage startup, it might feel like keeping everything a secret is the right strategy. This is where technical founders fall foul of their lack of marketing prowess. Generating brand or product awareness at an early stage makes getting your first, tenth, and hundredth customers ever so much easier. You can build up to launch day, create a waitlist, or find beta users through content marketing (and associated promotion).
5 - I don't know where to share my content.
And you will never find out until you start promoting it.
6 - We don't have a social media team.
Same here. That's why it took nearly 5 years to document this distribution strategy. You don't have to take that long because I've documented it all for you.
With that said and done, I have nothing left to convince you to start paying attention to content promotion.
Although, one of the techniques documented got your attention to get you this far, didn't it? 😉