There are only 24 hours in a day. A good chunk of them you need to spend sleeping, eating, and not working. The rest? Doing work! And for me, that means creating content, promoting it and building relationships across the web.
So in terms of content marketing, the problem is, people end up spending all the time creating the content and then drop the ball when it comes to promotion. They don’t have the time, and they allow content promotion to take the hit. So how do you promote content in less than 30 minutes?
- Have a plan. And by this, I mean write it down on paper. What content will you promote? What does your audience want? How often do they want it? Do you even know much about your audience? What tools do you have?
- Break the plan up into segments. Promoting content well is a process that involves finding, packaging, publishing, responding, repeat. Break this process up into short time segments so you don’t spend hours
on just one thing. Set aside 30-minute chunks of time and focus on doing one part of the plan well.
- Keep tools and platforms to a minimum. Using too many tools, or tools that don’t work together, will add time to your content promotion. In addition, you don’t need to be on every social network. Some networks your audience just isn’t on, and it takes too much time to publish, monitor, and maintain large numbers of social profiles.
Saving time is about managing time. And managing time, as you can see from the list above, is as much about the right tools as it is about the plan.
Tools You Can Use That Will Promote Your Content
There are no shortage of tools available to help you promote your own content, but not all of them do it well. In order to be truly useful, the tool has to be flexible and allow customization based on where you want to publish. It has to be intuitive to use, or you’re going to waste a ton of time every time you go to publish.
Here are a few tools that fit the bill.
Hootsuite is probably the most popular social media tool around, and has been steadily undergoing a facelift to its dashboard. With Hootsuite, you can quickly set up a publishing schedule to many social networks, including Twitter, Facebook, Google+, WordPress.
Hootsuite also allows you to easily respond to the conversations that happen around your promoted content.
CoSchedule is an editorial calendar that focuses on the publishing aspect of content marketing. Its selling point is that you can comprehensively promote your WordPress blog content fast and easy on social media, right alongside your blog post. It comes with a great dashboard that lets you see how well your content is doing, and the ability to share again with a click.
While you won’t be using it to respond to followers, you can set up extremely customizable, and repeated, social media posts to Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and more.
MailChimp is one of the most popular email clients around. It offers a broad range of capabilities, including some painless methods to automate your content promotion. Email, after all, is still the number one lead conversion method out there. How does MailChimp make it easy?
- RSS to Email. Set up an email that automatically populates content whenever you publish new content to your site.
- Drag-and-Drop Templates. MailChimp has made it easy to build a beautiful email using drag-and-drop elements, or pre-made templates.
- Simple list segmentation. MailChimp allows you to send emails to different lists or sub-lists with a simple radio button interface.
There are other email providers, such as Constant Contact or TinyLetter. While the abilities of each tool varies, your email
Tweetdeck is owned by Twitter and is a great free tool for anyone with multiple Twitter accounts. You can monitor, respond, and publish to any of your Twitter profiles, even scheduling your content in advance (although you cannot publish image posts via scheduling in advance).
What’s nice about Tweetdeck is that you can customize how you want your dashboard to look. Even if you are only monitoring one or two profiles, you can set up custom columns–such as mentions, new followers, trending, or favorites–to track activity.
Leave Tweetdeck open in a browser tab, get notifications, and stay on top of all Twitter activity.
Tools That Promote Other People’s Content
It’s easy to forget the importance of curation and promoting the content of others, but this is an important part of building your brand and your audience. Promoting outside content helps you meet and connect with others in your niche (and connect with their audience), and it also shows your audience you want to find helpful content for them, even if it isn’t yours.
Swayy makes it extremely easy to find valuable content to share with your audience. Swayy analyzes content, user behavior, and what’s happening on social media. It then helps find content for you to share with one click. There are also analytics and other features to help you get the most out of the content you share.
Instead of spending hours trying to find great content, Swayy shaves that time down substantially, brings the content to you, and makes it simple to share to your connected accounts.
Buffer is a tool that practically needs no introduction. This popular queuing app lets you save content you’ve found (including yours) into the queue. This content is published across the social networks you’ve connected based on the schedule you set up in the app.
Buffer is an excellent choice for time management in chunks. You can load up your queue periodically, and then move on to other tasks.
Tools That Automate Content Promotion
There’s a bit of crossover in this category. Tools like Buffer and CoSchedule definitely help automate the content promotion process. But, if you’re looking for true content promotion automation where you don’t have to think about it, this is what you’re looking for.
While customizing your content promotion is always best, there are times you need automation.
IFTTT, which stands for “if this then that”, is a site (also available as a mobile app) that allows you to automate some of the tasks you find yourself doing repeatedly. While it goes far beyond content promotion and can handle a broad range of duties, it is an excellent tool for content marketers.
IFTTT is based on the idea of channels that trigger actions to other channels. Channels include everything from Facebook to Evernote to Weather. You set up channels and the actions that trigger them, and from then on, it’s automated. There are many great IFTTT recipes for content marketers, like sending RSS feeds to social accounts and much more.
Zapier is somewhat similar to IFTTT in that it allows you to connect different tools together to function automatically based on the triggers you define.
Twitterfeed is a service that takes any RSS feed and publishes it to social media profiles like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and App.net. Though there are only a few controls (such as how clicks will appear in your analytics, for example), it is a simple way to be sure that all new content gets sent automatically to a social profile.
10. Yahoo Pipes
Yahoo Pipes helps you setup a custom RSS feed, and so it isn’t exactly a content promotion tool. But, if you create content for a variety of websites, you can combine the RSS feeds of those sources into one feed. This makes it easy to use tools like Twitterfeed, Zapier, or an RSS-driven email to pull together all of the content you create across the web.
Bonus: Crowdsource Your Social Promotion
Why not let your own readers promote your content and increase the benefits beyond the 30 minutes you do yourself?
Inserting specific sharable content inside your content has become a popular way to let readers share what you specifically want them to share. They promote your content as you want them to, on their own time.
Click To Tweet App
The Click To Tweet app allows you to insert tweetable quotes with links in your website that, when shared, bring people back to your content. It’s simple to use, and works with any website.
Click To Tweet Plugin
The Click To Tweet WordPress plugin allows you to create simple tweetable text boxes in your WordPress blog posts. Grab a quote or idea from your content, and make it easy for your readers to share it.
Make social share buttons prominent on your site, images a simple one-click share, and more. App Sumo has the tools to make it easy for your reader to promote your content for you.
So the next time you decide to half ass your content promotion because you don’t have the time, understand that content promotion, when planned out, broken into specific tasks, and combined with the perfect tools, can easily be done in 30 minutes or less.