You’re no stranger to the quality vs. quantity argument. You understand that for any digital marketing method to be effective, you must reach qualified followers. But, doesn’t it still drive you crazy when a competitor has 10k Facebook likes, and you only have 5,000? Sure, maybe you’re cranking out the best content, and your product/service is second to none. But, for branding purposes alone, wouldn’t it be great if you had 25k Facebook likes?
The sad truth is, this competitive numbers game is destroying content development and limiting new growth. Marketing managers would rather put up a front of unqualified followers than focus on curating a list of qualified contacts.
I have news for you. Your number of Facebook likes does not have a direct effect on your bottom line, none whatsoever. In this day and age, 100k Facebook likes means absolutely nothing.
To pull yourself out of the numbers game, first ask yourself these 5 questions.
- What do I define as a brand engagement? (Sale, post share, etc.)
- How many followers actually engage with my brand?
- How regularly do they engage?
- Is my content a direct representation of my brand? (Are you sharing pictures of puppies just to get likes, or are you providing fans with qualified industry content?)
- Which would you pick: 100k Facebook Likes with an engagement rate of 10%, or 20k Facebook likes with a 50% engagement rate? (This may or may not be a trick question, are you paying attention?)
Instead of tallying up social count, focus on creating valuable content.
Now more than ever, valuable content tailored to suit a specific audience is crucial. We’ve all seen the same regurgitated blog posts online. Take this as a challenge. Make an effort to stand out with crafty content. Don’t be afraid to toss aside old ideas and come up with an out of the box way to present information.
Content marketing isn’t black and white. Sure, some methods are better than others. At the end of the day, it all depends on what peaks your reader’s interest.
Here’s 4 content formats that have led the pack in 2015. I challenge you to pick one out of these four, and give it a try for your business.
Comic strips generated in house that strengthen brand identity and encourage social shares.
Informative industry related graphics that educate your customer.
Possibly a company backstory or meet the team video.
Stir up some online conversation with controversial industry debates.
Stop focusing on generating more likes or followers. Instead, cultivate an engaged community by producing valuable and shareable content. You know your customer or reader better than anyone else. Give the people what they want. Don’t bore them to tears with outdated facts and statistics, but at the same time, don’t share irrelevant link bait. Find that happy medium, and you’ll watch reads and shares soar.
Here’s some quick takeaway statistics about the growth of content marketing in 2015. I pulled this information from a recent report released by Content Marketing Institute.
- Infographics have seen the greatest increase in usage (from 51% last year to 62% this year).
- 70% of B2B marketers are creating more content than they did one year ago
- When asked how many times new content is developed, 42% of marketers say “multiple times per week” or “daily.”
If you’re too focused on growing social numbers, you’ll miss out on engaging customers who are ready to touch base. Focus on generating content that yields results.