How to keep moving without seizing the engine
If your organization is on social media, you know that you have to keep those channels up-to-date with new content on a regular basis. You probably also know that some days, coming up with something to post can seem like the biggest challenge.
Give your content strategy a tune-up with the content pyramid
The content pyramid below is a model of how you can structure your content strategy. Here’s how it works: The bulk of your content strategy should include material found from your community—curated content from around the web—which you can then simply re-post as links.
As the resources, time and effort needed to produce content increases, the frequency with which you post that type of content decreases. You post content that’s easiest to produce frequently, and content that takes more effort, time and resources less frequently.
That probably sounds pretty good—in theory. However, regardless how little effort, time and resources the lower tiers take, It's still a drain on your content engine.
Put your content strategy on High Octane: Add 10%
Wait—how does adding time, effort, and resources reduce the strain on them? Simple: by adding 10 per cent more, you’re going to effectively double, triple, or even quadruple your content pieces.
1. Remember that content is everywhere
First of all, don't think of content as social content only. Depending on your industry, chances are someone somewhere in your organization is giving speeches, writing white papers, doing presentations, and answering customer questions. Often, that content is coming through the communications department for vetting, proofreading, or to ensure nothing proprietary is being disclosed. Track it down, and with +10% more effort repurpose it for social.
For example, you could set up a partnership with your customer service folk to find out the top 5 questions (and their answers) each week. All that is already written down for the call centre; with a little more effort, you’ve got a weekly blog post. And, as a bonus, you’re probably going to save a few people the trouble of calling in, freeing up resources inside your organization.
2. Curate your own content
In some industries, community curation won’t work as well as in others. However, you can—and should—curate your own content. Here’s how this works.
Always use high-effort content to create lower effort content. The higher it is on the pyramid, the more use you should get out of it. Every time you produce something big, post it on your site and link to it on social channels like Facebook and Twitter.
For example, if you write a blog post, share the link on social sites. If you create a video, embed the video in your blog, and share the link to the blog on your social sites. Better yet, extract some stills from that video, or use the footage to create a short, or a blooper reel, or a 6-second loop for Vine. A little bit extra planning and time will let you squeeze a lot of extra mileage out of that high-effort content.
3. Get out and push
Your blog is not a Field of Dreams: just because you’ve built it doesn’t mean they’ll come. Maximize your blogging and the efforts you put into your online newsroom by building a list of subscribers and then sending them the content on a schedule.
If you’ve already got an e-newsletter, tweak your strategy to reduce the “OMG I HAVE TO WRITE THE NEWSLETTER” stress that happens right before it’s set to go out. If your newsletter consists of your last four, two, or even one blog post, you’ve doubled your mileage with only the effort required to copy, paste and format.
One of my favourite weekly newsletters from a few years ago used to consist of the organization’s weekly blog post (in summary; get those clicks!), a quick analysis of a particularly good piece of industry-related content from somewhere else on the web (summarized and linked), and a silly, funny link. Once, it was to Calming Manatee. I still use that site when I get stressed out.
You know you have to keep your social communities’ motors running with a consistent schedule of useful, interesting content. So, make sure the effort you put into producing that content is maximized by looking for ways to double or triple its usefulness by strategizing ways to make it go just a little bit further.