It would be great if after hitting “publish” on a new piece of content that your connections will notice it and it will be widely read. But in reality, it takes a lot of work to build a successful content marketing strategy.

You can’t solely rely on search engines and a handful of followers and blog subscribers to boost your organic volume, content producers need to establish syndication connections and build a strategy to ensure that each piece of content is read by key influencers and your target audiences.

Also remember that when you post new content to social media via a status update, only a small percentage of your friends/followers will actually be online at that moment to see it. Many of them will never see your content depending on the time of day and their settings. To maximize the likelihood of your followers seeing and reading your posts, you should post content at the optimal times of day and send out multiple updates on different days and at different times.

Successful content writers are social media specialists, marketing and SEO specialists. And it’s not hard to master all of these. Here are some tips:

  • Write short copy to introduce the content for posting on social media
  • Research the right hashtags to accompany your post
  • Ask a select group of others to promote your content to their networks and do the same for them
  • Post your content in various LinkedIn groups to reach others outside your immediate network –LinkedIn Groups have exploded in its power over the past few months.
  • Most social networking sites and online forums allow content promotion as long as it’s valuable, relevant to the community, and not blatant self-promotion
  • Promote content through partnerships (also to reach prospects outside your network)
  • Utilize a content syndicator to enhance the reach of your posts
  • If your content covers multiple topics, create a different status update for each topic and then spread those out over the course of a few days.
  • Keep it short, simple and easy to read by using headings, bullets and lists. Keep paragraphs to only two or three sentences.
  • Add your latest blog post or client alert to your email signature. You never know when a prospect, vendor or client might read a post that sparks a conversation or creates an opportunity.
  • Use images, graphics and videos to tell a story where possible. Visual content is more engaging, and can often tell the story quicker and more succinctly than words alone.
  • Keyword research and integration can have a big impact on search engine rankings and traffic. Scan through your content and pick out the main topics covered in your post. Plug those terms/phrases into Google Adwords’ free keyword suggestion tool. Note the most popular search terms and variations in phrasing and wording. Go back to your content and enhance your post title, content, meta description and tags with those popular terms/phrases.
  • One of the most powerful and misunderstood mechanisms of a blog is its RSS feed. This enables you to automatically feed your blog’s content to many social networking sites. This can significantly expand your reach and save you hours of time versus posting content manually.
  • Send certain VIP contacts an email with a link to your new article and a note that says something along the lines of “I thought you might find this article of interest.” Make sure to look at your analytics to see if they actually clicked on it.
  • If you have an e-newsletter (which you should), you should incorporate your blog posts and client alerts. Look at your analytics to see which posts get the most clicks and do follow-up blog posts on those topics.

I hope I’ve given you some ideas on how to take your content to the next level. Remember that content marketing is a long-term marketing investment that will show ROI if you are patient. Every piece of content you produce helps to build your brand and your authority as a subject-matter expert, which can help lead to new clients and referrals.