In the past, content distribution was simple. You would publish your blog, post a link to social media or email, and your readers would come flooding in. But things have changed.
Today, brands are producing more content than ever, but much of that content is going unread. The traditional methods of distributing content have stopped working. And that’s why it’s becoming increasingly important to think outside the box.
In this article, we’ll share six content distribution channels most brands overlook. Try these out, and you should notice better results with your next post.
The first distribution channel we recommend trying is your email signature. You may be thinking, how does my email signature help with content promotion? The answer is simple — it helps a lot. Think about the number of emails you send in a day, a week, or a month. If you’re like most people, sending an email is the first thing you do in the morning. And it’s also likely the last thing you check at the end of the day.
For every email you send, there’s an opportunity to promote your content. Let’s say your company has a conference coming up. Rather than sending out an email blast, you can use your email signature to let everyone know about it. Your Call to Action could be a simple line of text, or it could be a design like in the example below.
The best part about using your email signature as a distribution channel is that it’s free. You won’t have to subscribe to an email marketing tool or anything like that. You only have to set up your signature once, and you’ll be good to go.
Microsites are another distribution channel you can use to promote your content. These content sites have their own URL and don’t include the name of the sponsoring website. You can use them to either promote a specific campaign or to publish ongoing content.
For example, Red Bull has a microsite called Red Bulletin, where it publishes regular updates related to its brand. Although it’s impressive, this type of microsite is not what most businesses would use as it would take a lot of effort to launch, grow, and maintain something of this scale.
In most cases, businesses opt for microsites that focus on a single campaign. A perfect example is Prudential’s “Bring Your Challenges” site. Their microsite covers different the financial life cycle of the average middle-class American, and it also contains lots of videos, quizzes, and other interesting stats.
You can also use online forums to distribute your content to users. They are great for boosting your SEO traffic and developing your brand’s credibility. Here are a few tips to keep in mind before you start:
- Understand your audience. Whether you’re joining a forum on Quora, Facebook, or Reddit, it’s vital that you take some time to know your audience. Understand what topics they’re interested in learning about and what problems they face.
- Follow the rules. Forums are a place to share information, not spam links to your content. Always read the rules before participating, so you don’t get banned.
- Gain credibility and trust.Provide tips and advice to gain the confidence of others on forums. People will be more receptive to your content if you have a track record of providing value.
Forum marketing is a long term strategy. It will take some time to see results from your efforts, but stick with it. The benefits will be worth it.
Mobile marketing is often overlooked as a content distribution channel. Some companies avoid it because they think it’s too intrusive or spammy. But that’s far from the truth. Text message marketing is actually one of the most effective ways to reach customers. On average, text messages have an open rate of 98% open rate, and people reply to them within 90 seconds.
If you provide value through your content, you’ll see amazing results. Take a look at the example below.
You can see how Leanin.org used SMS to drive traffic to their female empowerment campaign. Visitors who subscribed to the campaign were segmented into three categories and their details added to a text messaging platform. Once subscribed, the company was able to send relevant content to each one of them.
SlideShare is another gold mine for content distribution. 70 million people visit the site every month. Furthermore, every uploaded slide is automatically transcribed and indexed by Google. That means you’ll benefit from an SEO boost every time you upload new content.
SlideShare can also help you reach new audiences. You’ll be able to position yourself as an authority on any topic and use your content to generate high-quality leads.
Best of all, you won’t have to worry about too many competitors. The site only has around 20 million registered users, which means there’s a lot of opportunity to build your presence on the platform.
The last distribution channel you should consider using is Gmail ads. Gmail ads are managed through AdWords, and they appear at the top of tabs in Gmail.
You can target users based on a variety of factors — for example, keywords, demographics, topical interests, and placements. This detailed targeting allows you to reach the right people, with the right interests, at the right time.
Promoting your content using keyword targeting can be especially beneficial. It will increase the likelihood of your content, showing up to a user who has had many emails about the keyword.
No matter which method you use to distribute your content, always keep your readers in mind. Focus on creating valuable content that helps them solve a problem. Experiment with different channels until you find one that works best for your brand.
It may take some time before you have a solid distribution plan, but the effort will be worth it. Not only will you gain more traffic, but you’ll also gain the trust of your customers.