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7 Steps To Elevating Your Content Distribution Strategy

November 18, 2022
  • 2,012
  • 9 min

Content marketing is undoubtedly one of the most effective ways for online businesses to reach their target audience and generate qualified leads. 

However, producing quality content is just one part of a successful content marketing strategy.

If you want to win at content marketing, content distribution is just as crucial as content production. Unfortunately, content distribution is still an afterthought for most online businesses. 

But if you want to generate the highest level of engagement and qualified leads from the content assets you’re producing, you need to start distributing your content immediately after you’ve published it. 

In this article, we’ll explore content distribution in more detail and provide you with a 7-step process to help you elevate your content distribution strategy.

What is content distribution?

Content distribution refers to the process of publishing, sharing, and promoting your content to your target audience using different channels & various media formats. It helps online businesses to outrank competitors in SERPs, increase engagement, and boost CTR for each piece of content they produce & publish.

Conversely, it is not possible to churn out the maximum return on investment (ROI) without having a solid content distribution strategy.

According to Ahrefs, over 60% of marketers produce at least one piece of content every day, yet over 90% of them generate zero traffic from Google. 

Why? — They don’t have a clear content distribution strategy in place. 

If you want to make your content more visible to your target audience and generate qualified leads, having a content distribution strategy is a must.

Below, we’ve shared a foolproof step-by-step process for elevating your content distribution game.

7- Step process to elevate your content distribution strategy

Step 1: Research your target audience

As explained earlier, content distribution is about getting in front of your audience — but not just any audience.

You ought to conduct thorough research so that you can know precisely who’ll be consuming your content. Creating a unique set of target market examples will help you to identify the relevant target audience.

The best way to do this is by creating buyer personas (an ideal customer profile). For the uninitiated, a buyer persona is a research-based, fictional illustration of your target customers.

Building buyer personas help to discover & understand the current pain points, channel preferences, and motivations of your target audience.

Step 2: Set clear KPIs & relevant metrics

Once you’ve researched your target audience, the next thing you need to do is set clear KPIs & relevant metrics to define what success will look like. 

Following are some of the KPIs & related metrics you can consider tracking to measure the success of your content distribution strategy:

  • Traffic — Unique page views
  • Engagement — Average time on page & bounce rate
  • Top content — Highest page views
  • Failing content — Top exit pages
  • Impact — Highest click-throughs/conversions/backlinks
  • Sentiment — Comments & social shares

Note that the subsequent metrics of your KPIs may vary depending on your content distribution channel. 

For example, you cannot track comments on your email newsletter or top exits on your social media posts. 

So, make sure you’re tracking the right metrics that correspond best with each content distribution channel you use. 

Step 3: Audit your existing content for recycling opportunities

If you have some published content before such as blog posts, social media posts, videos, etc., conducting a thorough content audit can help to 

  • Recall what topics you’ve already written on
  • Discover content gaps to improve upon
  • And which topics you can expand on by recycling your existing content

Content recycling refers to the process of repurposing existing content on new channels, using a different angle and format.

For example, suppose you’ve published a blog post on 5 content marketing strategies to implement for maximum ROI. 

Can you repurpose the content of this blog post from a new angle, or in a different format, and publish it on a new channel?

    • Angle — To repurpose your existing content, you can consider expanding on one or more points you made and reuse them for a new piece of content.
    • Format — Alternatively, you can also consider repurposing your existing content in a different format, such as creating a Slideshare or an infographic for example.
  • Channel — If not, see if you can repurpose your existing content with minimal editing for a new channel.

For example, can your blog post be used as an answer to a Quora question? If not, can you turn your blog post into a PowerPoint presentation and share it on Slideshare?

The best content marketers always keep in mind how they can recycle their content when choosing topics for new content production. 

Similarly, you can also consider making a list of angles, formats, and channels you can use for content recycling when deciding on new topics.

Step 4: Select your content distribution channels

Once you’ve audited your existing content for recycling opportunities, you need to decide the channels to distribute your repurposed as well as new content. 

Content distribution channels are basically the platforms on which you share and promote your content. 

The channels you can use for distributing your content may vary depending on your target audience and content marketing goals.

To identify the best content distribution channels, you need to go through the buyer persona(s) you created earlier and find out what channels they spend most of their time on.

That said, all content distribution channels fall into one of the following three categories:

  • Owned — Owned distribution channels are the channels that your company owns. They generally include your website blog, email newsletter, social media accounts, mobile apps, and so on. Each of the owned distribution channels is branded with an iconic logo to create a memorable brand experience.
  • Earned — Earned distribution channels are when a third party shares or promotes your content using various mediums & formats such as guest articles, expert roundups, social shares & mentions, press releases, product reviews, product feedback,  interviews, etc.
  • Paid — Paid distribution channels refer to the methods where businesses pay for distributing their content. Some of the paid channels include PPC, social media ads, sponsored posts, paid influencer content, and so on.

Many businesses prefer using just owned content distribution channels over others. But it is more helpful to use a mixture of channels from all three categories at some point. This way you can reach your target audience on all channels they use instead of just your owned channels.

Step 5: Determine your content types

After you select your content distribution channels, you need to consider the types of content you will create.

As I just said, many businesses choose to publish all their content on their website blog and then repurpose it for other channels and publish it. 

This is undoubtedly a good content distribution strategy, considering that not only blog posts are consumed universally, but they’re also easy to repurpose and simple to share.

More importantly, nearly 50% of buyers now prefer reading a company’s blog when making purchase decisions. 

For this reason, we strongly suggest producing high-quality, SEO-optimized blog posts on your company website and then repurposing them into different content types to distribute on other channels. Fortunately, there’s a range of tools like AI writers, design, and more that can help you produce quality material. 

Step 6: Build & distribute content

Once all the logistics are set, it’s time to start creating your content. 

During content creation, you need to make sure that the overall style and messaging of each piece of content you create align with your brand. 

Here is the list of content creation platforms you can use for producing different types of content.

And once you’ve created your content, you need to put it out in the world on your chosen distribution channels.

For every distribution channel that you use, make sure to follow its rules to optimize your content for each channel.

For example, if you’re writing blog posts for your company blog, be sure to go through this various blog post SEO checklist to make sure every piece of content you create secures the highest possible ranking on Google search results. Need more care on SEO for e-commerce businesses and online stores because Google will shuffle the SERP just before Black Friday. 

Similarly, if you’re leveraging social media channels, be sure to follow each social media platform’s guidelines such as the best time to post content, image dimensions, number of hashtags, and so on.

You can also use different content distribution channels like emails using a CRM email marketing tool for timely delivery of your content without much manual hassles.

Step 7: Evaluate performance & recalibrate your strategy accordingly

The final step in elevating your content distribution strategy is to monitor its performance and evaluate its effectiveness based on how well your content is performing against your pre-determined KPIs & their relevant metrics.

Ideally, you should set a routine (daily, weekly, monthly) to check and analyze the performance of each piece of content you create and distribute. 

For example, if you’re publishing blog posts, see which posts are bringing in the most traffic. In case you’re creating different types of content and distributing them on multiple channels, try to find out which content types are attracting the most customers back to your site.

Based on these performance data, establish a baseline & recalibrate your strategy for new content so that you know which numbers you need to beat in the next week or month.

End note 

Having a content distribution strategy is a crucial part of content marketing. Without a solid content distribution plan, your company can easily lose direction and focus. 

After all, you put in incredible effort in content moderation and creation, so it only makes sense that you take efforts to ensure that it is seen by the target audience through a distribution strategy.

Hopefully, this 7-step process will help to develop & elevate your content distribution strategy that helps you generate the highest engagement & qualified leads for your business.

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