For all its conceptual highs, digital marketing is not all about the expert input. In fact, when it comes down to gaining some extra traffic through Google and through social media, user-generated content powers you further and gives you the confidence to take bigger strides (at times, if not always).
Getting your content marketing endeavor to follow the right tone is about hitting more than one sweet spot. And facilitating quality user-generated content in the right measure lets you achieve exactly that. Having said that, how do you really bring in the results without having to spend a fortune on ads and contests?
The Emotional Quotient
Are you running a Facebook page for a real estate firm that apparently nobody has heard of? Getting the virality factor on Facebook and gaining followers for a brand no one knows exist is a challenge, particularly when there isn’t a large budget attached to achieving that goal.
There is however a strategy that banks on touching the emotional cord of customers. A real estate product, for example, can spin around a contest where they ask their followers to share a picture of the favorite corners of their home; best picture wins a prize. For a soft drink brand, a contest revolving around friends can work remarkably well.
Irrespective of the brand you are representing, creating campaigns around relevant themes to make an emotional connection can really do the trick. The level of engagement they offer you is unbeatable and you can really leverage this engagement to get more and more heads turn for the page.
- Emotion & Storytelling: How Telling Stories Can Nail You More Clients
- The Basics Of Emotional Design
- 5 Common Characteristics Of A Viral Web Video
Listen to Them
So, you have got your brand pages on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and on a few more social networks. So far so good, but if you continue with the unidirectional communication between you and the consumers, it beats the whole purpose of being on social media in the first place.
Platforms like Twitter are meant for you to have a one-on-one interaction with your followers, and more importantly, you also need to keep a close tab on the feedback you receive on these mediums.
"You Spoke, We Listened"
Take the case of the liquor giant, Maker’s Mark, for instance. Keeping in mind that the sharp rise in the demand, Maker’s Mark made the announcement that they would be diluting the alcohol percentage in their whiskey. Apparently, it didn’t take long for their consumers to take over Twitter and express their disappointment with the decision, with some even requesting the brand to instead raise the price.
The brand was wise enough to not keep its ears and eyes to the ground and instead soak in all the feedback with effect. They retracted and reversed their decision and turned a bad decision into a social media win: customers were glad that their tweets could actually make management change product-related decisions.
The more content you have on your website, the better the chance of it being indexed by search engines. Google likes content-heavy websites, and if your website contains a lot of user generated content, it doesn’t hurt. There are various tools available for the same and all you got to do is to use those for your advantage. Wikipedia is a fine testament to how remarkably the practice of crowdsourcing can work.
If you indeed decide to go for content crowdsourcing, make sure that your content contributors aren’t being asked to fill out the long-winded registration forms that require tons of redundant information.
Pay Attention To These Basics
Going bonkers with creativity is admirable, but it shouldn’t be done at the cost of missing out on the most elementary details. There are some basics which have to be taken along:
Appropriately Designed Website
On the surface, it seems pretty obvious that your website’s design will go a long way in getting you numbers, but the whole practice of having an inspiring design for your website requires serious attention to all the rudiments. Good design doesn’t mean showering your site with flamboyance.
Content That Intrigues
Content is king and it will remain to be so, no matter how many madcap content marketing strategies keep mounting. Every content marketing strategy relies heavily on the quality of the content. The content has to be intriguing and valuable enough for your visitors to share it and come back to your website frequently with the hope that they will continue finding valuable content on your site.
The content on your site has to not only be original and unique but adequately so to show off your brand’s personality. You can also craft it in a way that it triggers discussions. Ending your articles with questions is the easiest way to do so when you can ask people to express themselves in the comment box, which would further boost the user engagement on the website.
Social media has an indispensable worth when it comes to content marketing. You are pitching yourself directly to your target audience when you are sharing your articles on the social media platforms. As and when you have created a piece of content or included images that have the virality potential, you can garner quality traffic for your website.
Create separate accounts on major platforms like Google+, Twitter and Facebook if you wish to make the most out of the benefits each of them has to offer. You can eye gaining as many followers as possible, something which can really give a push to your numbers.
Social Media Quirks
Whenever you put a post of your website on the page, do include the relevant hashtags for enhancing post visibility. The hashtags are aimed to make your posts reach those who aren’t yet following you. Here are a few guides and articles to help you make full use of hashtags:
- Hashtagging In Social Networking – A Guide To Using Them Right
- Facebook Hashtags: How It Works And How To Use It Right
- 10 Useful Hashtag Tools For Social Media Marketing
Again, in order to extract maximum benefits out of this strategy, you need to have a crisp and interesting enough content.
Keep an Eye on the Stats
Once all the hard-worked efforts are made, it is recommended that you use a tool that lets you seamlessly keep track of the results achieved. I would recommend Google Analytics. Whilst there are multiple tools available to give you a fair insight into your site’s performance, not all are as streamlined and simple as the Google Analytics. Insights into customers’ demographics and their behavior can be seamlessly gained.
- 6 Powerful Google Analytics Features
- A Guide To: Goals And Funnels In Google Analytics
- 20 Must-Know Tips & Tricks To Master Google Analytics Data
- Piwik – Open Source Web Analytics Platform
Motivating your followers to share your content is what you need to further your reach. Have you tried any of the methods mentioned here, or do you have something new to add? Do add a comment below.
Editor’s note: This post is written by Maria Mincey for Hongkiat.com. Maria is a full-time blogger passionate about digital marketing and new technology initiatives. Boiling her writings with pertinent insight, she aims to make an instant personal connection with every reader. Maria is employed with Xicom Technologies Ltd. You can find her on Twitter.