Content helps to build your brand, establish expertise, develop trust, and generate leads. Whether you’re a startup tech company or a mature organization serving the legal community, potential customer and industry leaders use content to find and validate you, what you do, and the products and services you offer.
Here are top ideas, formats, and tactics to consider when devising your content strategy.
1. Website – You need a website. It’s your calling card on the web. A place to showcase your company and demonstrate your product and speak to the problems of your potential customers.
2. Microsites – Does a particular problem your customers face keep popping up? Do you offer a unique feature or solution? Have you designed an interactive engagement that tells a story? You should consider creating a simple site addressing just that issue, solution, or interaction. These sites have their own domain or a subdomain of the main site.
3. Blogging – This is a no-brainer. “I don’t have the time” is simply not an excuse for not blogging. This is where you produce content that is helpful to your current and potential customers – usually, lawyers and law firms. This is also where you create original content that can be repurposed to other formats, including lead-generating content.
4. Social Media – You must have a social media presence. It’s today’s word-of-mouth and one of the first places potential clients look to validate and engage. Social media, particularly Twitter, is useful for building meaningful relationships with industry leaders. It’s also become a help desk of sorts for many companies.
5. Webinars – Put on regular webinars on topics and trends that are relevant to your prospective customers. Create Vimeo and SlideShare accounts for your presentations. Get a current customer or industry leader to co-present. This is an effective lead generating activity so remember to closely align your topics with the service, tools, and solutions you offer.
6. Ebooks & White Papers – Creating ebooks and white papers is not as burdensome as you think. Repurpose the content you’ve already created in the prior efforts: blogging and webinars. This is also a great lead-generating tool. Early-stage companies can go a bit broader with topics to generate awareness, referred to as top or middle of the funnel leads.
7. Videos – I’m not a fan of the popular cartoon characters that explain your product or service in two minutes. Instead, get a product expert and customer to talk about their problem and how you solve it. Build a “resources” page to house your webinar recordings, which, after a bit of post-production work, you can “gate” – require an email address to view. Sit down for an hour and produce ten 2-minute video clips. Write a blog post about each. That’s one blog post for 10 weeks. Your content strategy is starting to come into shape.
8. Email Newsletter – Your webinars, ebooks and white papers have helped you grow your email subscriber list. Now it’s time create a weekly or monthly newsletter which provides useful content for your subscribers. It’s also an opportunity to keep top of mind with potential clients – folks who downloaded your content or attended your event.
9. Case Studies and testimonials – These still work. Other voices – actual users – proclaiming the value of your product speak volumes. Ask your customers for testimonials. It’s an advantage for them to show they’re up on the latest technology and productivity tools and services. Don’t get hamstrung by the “perfect” case study format. I’ve seen this happen way too often. In fact, the old tired format could do with a refresh. Avoid marketing speak and let the customer’s voice lead the way. Case studies and testimonials are essential for repurposing to other marketing collateral such as flyers at trade shows.
10. Podcast – It’s the golden age of podcasting and there’s a reason for it: convenience and quick, actionable takeaways. You can listen at the gym, during your commute, or when you have down time and don’t want to stare at a screen. Producing a podcast does take some effort. Focus on a specific topic. Don’t try to appeal to everyone in an effort to get more downloads. A focused, loyal following is what you need. If you don’t have the time, reach out to do guest spots on other podcasts. The Legal Talk Network has an ever expanding library of podcasts. Get in touch with them.
Finally, “Build it and they will come” does not work with digital properties. In addition to creating useful content, you must let people know where it is and how to find you. You do this by optimizing for search so that when someone is searching for answers to a problem which your product or service helps to solve they’ll find you.
Updated and republished May 11, 2018.