Has your marketing and communication team identified the role content marketing plays in your public relations strategy? Producing relevant content that positions your business and its leaders and industry experts, along with collaborating with influential partners, can have a profound effect on your ability to expand reach, expand relationships and strengthen your brand. Part one of Notable Ways Content Marketing is Making an Impression on PR focused on collaborative content – specifically guest blogs, influencer outreach and establishing partnerships. In part two, the focus shifts to four additional key areas that can improve your brand’s PR evolution and content marketing integration.
1. Brand Credibility and Approachability:
Content marketing should be an element of a long-term marketing and public relations strategy. By using valuable and relevant content in conjunction with your business’s brand messaging and overall goals, you will draw in more prospects, transform customer buying behavior, become more approachable and build brand loyalty. Content marketing as part of your PR strategy enhances approachability and credibility by:
· Attracting new customers and further engaging current customers. Producing good content and sharing it with your network, partner’s networks and media representatives can engage your customers throughout the entire buying process.
· Positioning your company and your leadership as experts in your field. By offering relevant content and placing it strategically, you position your company as the go-to expert for other industry representatives and your target audience.
· Giving your company a voice improves approachability. Beyond the product or service you’re selling, content marketing gives your company and its representatives a voice and personality. When a personalized and unified message is shared among channels, the strategy not only builds trust, but also humanizes your business – making it approachable.
· Increasing sales and customer referrals. When content is created in a way that it is editorial in nature rather than a paid ad, it oftentimes speaks to your target market in a way that will refrain from coming across pushy, or specifically endorsing products or services.
2. Angle and Storytelling
An important element of content marketing strategy is to be focused on the reader / buyer by producing information that your target market finds important and interesting. However, it is not uncommon to become derailed by demands of various department requests (product marketers, sales, engineering, customers service, etc.).
Focusing on public relations will remind teams to keep the business’s personas and the readers of targeted networks or publications as the key focus. What stories are most interesting for these audiences? What current events are impacting our industry and how are we involved? Working together will allow PR to bring new insights, creative angles and a broadened perspective of specific audiences into the creation of content.
Keep in mind, a PR professional’s main goal is to generate and provide stories that are so compelling that media representatives view it as a prominent story to share among their readership. If we approached content marketing in the same way – readers of our owned media channels would respond in the same way. The bottom line is – a good story, and good overall content… is sure to connect with your target audience.
3. Be The Media Outlet
Have you noticed in recent years that more and more publications are sharing submitted content as their own? You may notice on sites like Forbes.com, Hubspot.com, or Inc.com, etc., that many of the “reporters” are actually industry experts who have provided a relevant article for the publication to share. Those who are able to produce quality content that is not overly promotional is an easy way to build brand awareness and credibility for individuals within your organization. Oftentimes, it is as simple as reviewing and following a publication’s contributor guidelines.
In addition to submitting relevant content to outlets willing to share your information, leveraging your own company blog as a media outlet will help you drive traffic to your site – with the goal of generating leads and converting customers. In fact, some company and trade publication blogs have greater readership than certain media outlets.
Developing a content collaboration strategy (working with other industry influencers to share their expertise on your blog or for one of your contributors to share on their blog) is another great way to cast your net wider and lean on additional resources to develop mutually beneficial partnerships.
4. Sponsored and Native Content
The significance of a company’s PR successes are held in high regard for good reason. Consumers inherently trust editorial content to be more credible and forthcoming than paid advertising. This is one of the reasons why sponsored and native advertising have been such a focus among marketers and online publishers in recent years.
Sponsored and native content is an article written by a paid advertiser that uses the same form as an article that was written by an editorial representative. While some view the concept to be deceitful, many marketers view it to be an effective, PR-centric approach, that has the ability to attract the attention of prospects.
These key tactics are just a few of the ways that brands continue to evolve and integrate areas of content marketing and public relations. While it is increasingly important for marketers to understand the importance of editorial writing styles and practices, it is equally important for public relations professionals to understand and be able to tactically execute the areas of paid media. Here are a few other ways good content and PR strategy go hand in hand.
How has your team successfully integrated marketing content with PR and media relations efforts?