content marketingAcademia is known for its rule of “publish or perish,” but did you know that content marketing has that rule too? If you’re not publishing content, you’re giving your customers away to your competitors who are publishing content. Publishing is key to content marketing and in order to publish, you need to think like a publisher.

Jon Goldman, president of Brand Launcher, gave a fascinating presentation at the last meeting of the NJ chapter of MENG (Marketing Executives Networking Group) discussingthe secret all good content marketers know.

According to Goldman, without content, us marketers live and die by the price sword, meaning we have to rely on discounts or giveaways to attract customers. A better way to drive sales though is by giving away free information (content), not free stuff or discounts. Giving away free stuff will draw a lot of people to you, but they will leave as soon as you run out of freebies to give away. Giving discounts hurts your bottom line. Giving information however, pulls in people who are really interested in your product/industry and they are more likely to buy from (and buy at full price!).

Why will giving away free information bring you great potential customers? Education leads to trust and trust leads to sales. Teach me, don’t sell me.

So, what sort of information should you give out? First, don’t give out information like a phone book, instead, build mystique with your content and make people feel like they are learning great secrets. This is the difference between old marketing and new marketing. With old marketing, you would layout it out as “we do XY & Z,” but with new marketing, present it instead as “how to do XY & Z.” It’s the difference between writing “we help non-profits raise money,” and “the secret to raising money for your non-profit.” One is engaging and interesting and one isn’t.

Need ideas for content? Try some of these headlines on for size and see if you can’t come up with a couple ideas to fill in the blanks for your company:

  • “What you must know before you…”
  • “Insider tips for…”
  • “The 7 biggest myths of…”
  • “10 secrets on…”
  • “People who…”

See how easy that is? Now, for the body of your content, find a subject matter expert in your company and ask them seven questions. Have them talk for a few minutes on each question and record the interview. Transcribe and edit the answers, and viola, you have an e-book! Instant content. See Jon Goldman on our youtube channel: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6nvJnNB4Tg

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