I’m still facing massive jet lag (for me, it’s roughly 3:30 in the morning at the moment), so today’s Two for Tuesdays will be brief and to the point (and hopefully make sense!). We’re still focused on content marketing for our Tuesdays’ posts, and today, I’m piggybacking off an excellent post from Forbes, The Only 6 Content Marketing Tips You Need for 2015.
From the title, you can tell that Drew Hendricks, the author, looks at six tips – we’ll check back in on a couple more next week, but for today, there are two that I want to examine as they relate to the legal industry.
Tip One: Learn to Curate
This is my absolute favorite tip, since I’ve seen it be the most successful for lawyers and legal professionals.
What does Hendricks say?
It’s becoming increasingly clear that customers are less interested in promotional content and more drawn to thought leadership quality content. In other words, you should stop trying to force-feed sales copy and invest in developing yourself as a reputable source of valuable content. The best way to do this is by learning to curate relevant content from across the web and providing your followers with information they want and need."
It sounds hard, right? But it’s actually VERY simple, and there are a couple of ways to accomplish this:
- Start with an RSS reader, such as Feedly: Subscribe to blogs in your field of interest, set up key word searches for terms of interest, etc. If you’re not sure what blogs there are, ask your colleagues and clients for their recommendations. Check the reader daily, and share the content you think your friends and connections will find most relevant (and why) through your social channels, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.
- Use Twitter: Get yourself set up on Twitter and follow the thought leaders in your industry. See who they follow and engage with, and follow those people too. Use a twitter management tool such as Tweetdeck, and set up columns to search for keywords or phrases in your industry that are relevant, so you don’t miss conversations among those you don’t follow. Engage with, and retweet content from, those of interest.
- Blog: You’ll start to find as you’re reading the content of these thought leaders that you have something to say as well. And it will often be more than the limited character space that you have on Twitter or LinkedIn when you share the links. Use your blog (or get started with one) to share your own perspective, while linking back to the original content (as I did in this post). Then share your post via your social networks, and engage with the author of the original inspiration to connect with them.
Doing the above regularly will help establish you as a thought leader through content marketing – you don’t have to be doing these things constantly, but you do need to be doing them on a fairly regular basis to continue the momentum.
Tip Two: Invest in Visual Content
This may seem unimportant, especially for something like the legal industry, but I assure you that it’s not.
As Hendricks says:
As Jeff Bullas emphasizes, we live in a visual world. When it comes to content marketing, this is convenient. Digital technology is evolving at a rapid pace and has given marketers the chance to tell stories through the use of videos, infographics, and compelling imagery. Using the fact that 94 percent of content with visuals get more total views than textual content, you should be aiming to incorporate visual elements in every single post, article, and tweet you produce."
94% of content with visuals gets more total views than textual content.
That’s even true in the legal industry – we’re all in a rush these days, so it’s about what catches our attention. And what catches our attention is images.
You don’t have to put crazy photos up or have obnoxious videos – that’s not what I’m suggesting. But there are a lot of ways to add visual content to your content marketing mix that are professional and take advantage of this statistic:
- Use images with all of your text content: Include a related image with all of your blog content (make sure you have the rights to use it), and then include that image when sharing it on your social networks. You may sometimes have to upload it separately, such as on Twitter, but since it draws attention to your post and link, it’s worth the extra effort.
- Use your content to create visuals: How can your content be repurposed visually? Put together a short video that summarizes your latest blog post. Interview a thought leader in the industry via Skype and post that to your blog. Create a YouTube or Vimeo channel that you use for informational videos. Share your recent PowerPoint presentation on SlideShare. Not all content has to be in text form, so how can you share it in a visual way?
- Leverage the visual social channels: This suggestion is more about showing you as a well-rounded thought leader, and less about sharing your content directly, but it’s a valuable one. Use tools like Instagram and Vine to add depth to your written content. Share photos from industry conferences and events you’re attending & speaking at, do a Throwback Thursday or Friday Funny post, etc. Once in a while, you can share short videos with educational content and suggest your followers check out the longer ones at your YouTube or Vimeo channels. Give people a "behind the scenes" look at your offices and co-workers. Take photos with your colleagues and share those. There are a number of ways that this can be both creative, and professional, so that followers get to know and like you, and want to read your content.
We’ll look at a couple of Hendricks’ other tips next week, but in the meantime, what are some of your content marketing tips for 2015?