If a content Hub is built in a digital forest, and no one is around to visit… does it make a difference?
The answer to this hypothetical question, unlike its better-known philosophical cousin, is pretty clear-cut. Without a well-developed distribution strategy to bring in the right sets of eyes, a content Hub isn’t much use to you.
It’s like buying a Ferrari and leaving it parked in your garage forever.
If you’ve put in the time and effort to build a killer content Hub, you need to market that content Hub before it can help you market your content.
Here are a few ways to ensure that happens.
If you’re like most B2B marketers, email plays a key role in your day-to-day activities. If you’re a marketing automation user, email is central to just about everything you do. And all this despite the growth of a large number of new communication channels.
In fact, in a recent study conducted by Pardot, 73% of marketers agreed that email marketing is still core to their business.
A few of the ways you can promote your Hub through email:
- Introduce your Hub to your customers and prospects with an email announcement
- Introduce your Hub to your internal stakeholders (e.g. your sales, customer support, and management teams) to foster adoption organization-wide
- Ensure you have Hub content integrated into your regular email newsletters
- Send out daily blog update emails that feature Tile Embeds (or links to your blog posts in the Hub)
- When a visitor downloads a piece of premium content from your Hub, send follow-up emails that feature other relevant pieces of Hub content
- Make your Hub content a key part of your marketing automation workflows
- Include links to your content Hub front and center in your email signature
According to the Content Marketing Institute, B2B marketers use six different social networking platforms on average. And it makes sense, since it’s estimated that social media can have a lead-to-close rate as much as 100% greater than outbound marketing methods.
Now, you don’t need to immediately start promoting your Hub on six social networks to find that kind of success (and arguably, you shouldn’t), but here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Repurpose your Hub content into bite-sized pieces you can share across your various social media channels
- Leverage your Hub’s Hootsuite integration to automate the sharing of your content
- Run a Twitter Lead Generation Campaign using Lead Generation Cards
- Sponsor Hub Content as LinkedIn Direct Sponsored Content
- Seed your presentations and visual content to SlideShare
- Share your content in relevant social groups and forums to spark discussion
- Ensure your Hub is integrated with AddThis to promote sharing and content consumption
Once your Hub has been up and running for a few weeks, take a look at your Hub’s referral traffic through your Google Analytics integration and in concert with your Hub’s Social Share report. You’ll have a great idea of which social media platforms you should be investing in moving forwards.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a pillar of inbound and content marketing. With internet users conducting over 12 billion searches per month in the United States alone and SEO-driven leads closing at a 850% higher rate than outbound leads, getting found organically can be huge.
The good news? Your Hub is SEO-friendly right out of the box. With a little bit of work, you can turn your Hub into an SEO powerhouse.
So when thinking about SEO and your Hub, consider these questions:
- Have you set meta descriptions for each piece of content that appears in your Hub?
- Have you set appropriate Stream-level introductions (H2 tags, essentially)?
- Have you configured your Flipbook Folder SEO settings?
- Are you using alt-tags with your Hub images?
- Are you building links to internal and external sources the right way?
- Have you appropriately configured your no-robots and canonical tags?
Commenting & Communities
It’s every content marketer’s dream to be able to transform content into a community.
There’s no better indication that content has found traction with an audience than when that audience feels compelled enough to leave a comment, share it with their own network, or give you constructive feedback.
Here at Uberflip, we use our Hub’s Disqus commenting integration as well as the Uberflip A-List (our Advocate Hub) to spur engagement with our passionate community of content marketers.
- Are you using your Hub’s Disqus integration?
- If so, do you have a process in place to reply to the comments and feedback your content receives?
- Are you encouraging your audience to engage with you in the body of your content (i.e. asking for feedback, comments, and opinions)?
- Are you using a tool like Influitive to build and nurture a community of advocates?
Ultimately, your Hub is a final destination for content consumption, engagement and lead capture.
Having said that, there are a number of ways you can embed your Hub content in other platforms to drive traffic, including Stream Embeds, Tile Embeds, Animated Grids, Animated Mini Flipbooks, Website Embeds, and Reverse Embeds.
- Embed dynamic Tiles onto the static pages of your website, such as a home page, product pages, or About pages
- Embed Tiles or Animated Mini Flipbooks onto ‘Thank You’ pages
- Embed Tiles or Grids into sidebars and footers
- Embed your Hub onto your organization’s intranet portal to encourage internal consumption and sharing of your Hub content
You can learn more about each of these embed options in more detail here.
Paid Search & Advertising
According the Content Marketing Institute, “search engine marketing (SEM) is the paid promotion method that B2B marketers not only use most often but also find most effective.”
Once you’ve got a handle on the basics, you might want to experiment with:
- Google AdWords (Search & Display)
- Bing & Yahoo (Search)
- Advertising your content strategically with services like Outbrain
- Retargeting to your visitors through platforms like AdRoll and Retargeter
When done right, all of the above can be highly effective ways of promoting your content Hub.
How Are You Promoting Your Hub?
As a marketer, you just can’t afford to let your content Hub get lost in the digital forest.
Luckily, there’s a number of powerful ways you can promote your content Hub as part of your overall strategy.
Whether you embrace email marketing, social media marketing, SEO, community building, strategic embeds, or paid search/advertising, the only real must is that you work to ensure your Hub lives at the center.
To realize the kind of value you expect, your content Hub needs to become the actual Hub of your content distribution strategy.