Want To Succeed At Content Marketing? Rip Yourself Off!

While reviewing a recent DemandCon session on content marketing, I was reminded that good content isn’t just about creativity. It’s also about knowing when and how to rip yourself off.

Thief in Tamilnadu 1954

Consider a typical example: A marketing organization spends several thousand dollars to create a white paper. It posts the paper to its site and (maybe) gates it with a lead capture form. It also promotes the paper via email and social media.

So far so good. But if this is as far as you get, you’re throwing away opportunities.

Here’s what you need to do next:

1. Plot your heist. You want to break into that white paper, size up the juiciest nuggets of knowledge and haul them off. Pay special attention to the real gems like research findings, summary lists, pull quotes and other stuff that can work well in a stand-alone content format.

2. Fence the goods. Now that you’ve got a sack full of good ideas, where do you unload them? That white paper is probably good for a few blog posts, a webinar, maybe a video whiteboard or SlideShark presentation, and a whole slew of Twitter or LinkedIn posts.

3. Don’t spend it all at once. By now, you probably realize what you’ve got when you loot that white paper: The makings of a whole content mini-campaign. Spread out your additional content over a period of weeks and even months, and that white paper will keep giving up the goods for a long time.

4. Plan a life of crime. This approach can work on almost any type of long-form content. Did you just commission a research study? Issue an e-book? Conduct a webinar with an industry heavyweight? As part of your content creation process, always look for at least four or five ways to break up the main piece of content, repackage it and republish it on as many formats and platforms as possible.

Now — who said crime doesn’t pay?

-Matthew McKenzie


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