Giving to your audience is one of the foundations of any smart content marketing strategy.
To grow your audience and get better results for your business, it might be time to expand your content beyond blog posts, podcast episodes, or newsletters and find more ways to be truly generous.
The idea is:
Looking to become a “giver,” rather than a “taker?” Let’s talk about why generosity works and how you can give your audience more value.
Why giving generously works
You might be thinking:
Generosity works when you’re marketing your business because it:
What to give away
Wondering what you should give to your audience?
There are the usual content marketing possibilities, like blog posts, videos, podcast episodes, webinars, and ebooks. These are all great choices.
Also consider giving:
Think about your perfect client or customer and ask yourself:
With some creativity, you’ll be able to create high-value resources that don’t hurt your business model.
The three methods below will help you become extraordinarily generous.
1. Don’t err on the side of caution
Chris Garrett’s article, How to Decide Which Content to Sell and What to Give Away for Free, answers a lot of common questions about this topic.
The entire article is helpful, but what I like best about the post is that Chris advises content marketers to not be concerned about giving away too much:
Don’t be afraid to give generously on a regular basis. No matter how much you give away, there will still be people who need implementation advice or additional products and services.
Before you sell to your prospects, they must see you as an authority — and giving freely helps you achieve that.
2. Try content curation
Your prospects — regardless of what niche or industry you’re in — are most likely swimming in a giant river of content. They need someone to help filter out the noise and gather the best resources, tools, and content on a particular topic.
That’s exactly what smart content curators do. They pick the most useful articles, videos, and podcast episodes on the web and compile them together into an easy-to-consume format (like a blog post or email newsletter).
When you publish your curated content regularly, people will learn to count on you as a reliable source of up-to-date, useful information, and you’ll become their go-to person for that topic.
Ryan Hanley’s weekly newsletter is a great example of how to practice smart content curation. Each week, Ryan sends his subscribers seven important articles on content marketing that he’s selected, along with a little insight of his own to help people understand and integrate the information in the articles.
For more advice on curated email newsletters (and a decision tree that helps you assess if curating content is right for you), check out this Copyblogger article and infographic.
3. Adopt a policy of generosity
Adam Grant, author of the extraordinary book Give and Take: Why Helping Others Drives Our Success, said:
The way I look at it, we all want our businesses to grow stronger. If you adopt an attitude of generosity with your prospects, you’ll be positioned to grow stronger and more profitable.
Always ask yourself, “Is this something my community would find useful?”
For example, you can shine the spotlight on a community member who is making great progress or collaborate with a strategic partner on a project that benefits your audience.
Gather your ideas in a computer file or notebook, so you always have a list of content options to pull from.
Become a radically generous content marketer
As content marketers, we already provide value for our audience members. But taking your giving game up a notch could help spark new breakthroughs for your business.
So ask questions. Pay attention. Stay open. And keep giving, over and over and over again.
Your prospects lives will improve dramatically, and so will yours.
Ready to discover what a winning content marketing strategy actually looks like?
Check out our new series that walks you through the Who, What, and How of focused and effective content marketing:
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