Content distribution is a term often used in digital marketing. It can mean many different things. It’s important to understand what it means for your marketing strategy before adding it as a line item to your budget.
Content distribution has become increasingly more essential to the success of your content marketing efforts.
In our article, we cover the topic of content distribution, how to build a content strategy, and choose your distribution channels.
What is content distribution?
Publishing and promoting content is called content distribution. It provides the content to your audience through various channels and media formats.
Content distribution can be as simple as just publishing your social media post. However, having an effective content distribution strategy can increase brand awareness and bring you more profits!
Why is content distribution important?
Content distribution is a vital part of your digital marketing strategy. It can increase brand awareness, increase your brand authority, and help build a loyal customer base.
Growing your audience also increases your chances of earning media mentions, backlinks, and social media shares. In addition, it helps grow your organic traffic, which brings more conversions.
Even the best content is useless if it’s not reaching anybody. So a content distribution strategy is about getting your content in front of the right eyes.
Moreover, an effective content distribution plan can contribute to greater content marketing ROI for your brand by increasing visibility.
It enables you to collaborate to create and share the content. A content distribution strategy aligns all parties and ensures you’re all collaborating efficiently.
Content distribution strategy can help you stay in check distribution performance. In addition, it can help you set benchmarks and goals to pursue when publishing and promoting your content.
Content types you can distribute
You can create many types of content in marketing for your business. However, there are several content types, and each type requires its content distribution plan.
Here are the most common content types used in content marketing:
Articles you publish on your blog can effectively reach a new audience through search engines. Consistently publishing high-quality original content optimized for relevant keywords will increase organic traffic.
Long blog posts give you a great opportunity to incorporate long-tail keywords into your content. As a result, you’ll rank higher in Google and have more website traffic.
If your goal is to drive more traffic to your website, it’s important to remember you shouldn’t syndicate it.
Content syndication means the republication of the content on your website or other platforms.
It may bring you more readers. However, there’s the possibility that Google will rank the syndicated piece instead of your article. It’s especially common when the syndicated website has a higher authority.
An email newsletter is a great way to bring more people to your website. You can send out a daily or weekly newsletter with a round-up of your best or recently published articles.
Webinars are another great way to create content that is perfect for distribution. They allow you to demonstrate your expertise on a particular topic. In addition, sharing knowledge on your company’s niche can provide educational value to your audience.
You can publish live webinars, which allow you to interact with viewers in real-time. For example, you will answer questions your potential customers may have or run polls to determine what they need.
You can publish the recording of a webinar in a variety of ways. For example, you can make a YouTube channel and post it there or publish it as evergreen content on your website.
Short clips from the webinar can be posted on social media channels or placed within relevant blog posts.
Publish your webinar content through a dedicated webinar page on your website, as well as calls-to-action (CTAs) on your blog posts.
This method was used by HubSpot’s Webinars webpage, where visitors can browse and access free webinar content.
Creating ebooks is another way to share your expertise on a particular topic. In addition, ebooks are a great way to distribute in-depth content to your audience.
It’s also a great way to expand your email list.
You can put your ebook in multiple locations across your website, for example, at the end of blog posts or in a pop-up.
Also, you can create a dedicated landing page and distribute your ebook through a gated form.
The popularity of podcasts has grown tremendously in the last few years. It’s an effective way to give your audience audio content that they can listen to on the go.
Podcasts are particularly useful for distributing longer content, for example, interviews with experts, employees, customers, or influencers in your industry.
If you create videos, you can easily convert them into podcasts. You can put the same content on different platforms and reach more people.
Moreover, you can publish a transcription from the podcast as an article on your blog. It can boost your SEO and bring more traffic to your page.
You can distribute your podcast through various platforms like Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, or even SoundCloud.
Check out our Ultimate Content Writing Checklist!
Video content distribution
Videos are another type of content you can distribute on multiple channels. YouTube has 2.3 billion active users every day.
People also watch videos on various social media platforms like Instagram or TikTok. So you can easily post a video on YouTube and post short clips from the videos on social media platforms.
According to Wistia, just in the first half of 2019, video minutes viewed on their platform have increased by 84.8 percent. Their 2021 State of Video report also reveals significant increases in various aspects of video production and consumption.
Case studies are a great content type for distribution as you can publish them on different platforms in various forms. They provide details about customers you’ve worked with, the challenges they faced, and how you helped them.
Showing your company can solve problems for your target audience is a great marketing strategy. It develops trust in prospects considering whether to work with you.
Creating a dedicated case study page is a great way to put that into work. Visitors can find all kinds of case studies featuring real customers.
Highlight one or more case studies on the home page or in relevant locations on the website.
Infographics are a great way to show a large amount of information. It’s a form of content that’s easy to digest and visually appealing at the same time.
Visual content is easily shared on social media platforms, driving traffic to your website.
If you want to boost your SEO, create a snippet of HTML code that will allow other people to embed the image on their blogs with a link back to your website.
Distribute your infographic content through Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, and your blog. You can create a Pinterest account on which it shares its infographics in addition to other brands.
A white paper is a report that showcases a specific problem and then presents a solution to that problem. White papers are usually more technical than articles or ebooks. They are more dedicated towards professionals, like a Chief Marketing Officer or Director of Human Resources.
By adding an opt-in form, you can expand your email list. However, you can make them available without gating to demonstrate your expertise. Putting a CTA in a relevant article that takes a reader to a white paper is also a great way to promote your content.
Content distribution channels
Promoting content to online audiences can happen through various channels. Therefore, choosing the right distribution channels for your marketing strategy is key in promoting any type of content. There are three types of content distribution channels:
Owned Content Distribution Channels – you distribute content on platforms that belong to you, like your blog, email newsletter, social media, or microsite.
Earned Content Distribution Channels – other people or businesses publish your content or content about you through press coverage, guest articles, retweets or shares, product reviews, or press releases.
Paid Content Distribution Channels – you explicitly pay for content distribution. Paid distribution channels usually include cost-per-click (CPC), where the content owner pays a certain amount every time someone clicks to view the content.
How to distribute different content types
If you want to create a foolproof content marketing strategy, you need a repeatable process. You can’t just share content randomly on different channels. Your results will be significantly better if you take the time to create an effective content distribution system.
Knowledge of distributing different content types is key for building a successful content distribution strategy.
You shouldn’t limit yourself to promoting the content of one type on one distribution channel.
For example, case studies can be distributed in various forms, such as blog articles, videos, or podcasts.
You can promote your ebook via email marketing, social media, or guest blog post.
Repurposing your content to suit different media channels can bring you more traffic. As a result, your content will reach different types of customers.
Tips for building content distribution strategy
Content distribution is a big part of any content strategy. To help you achieve the business goals, we present to you our tips on creating a solid content distribution strategy:
Research your target audience
For a solid content distribution strategy, start with audience research. Next, you need to distribute your content to the right audience. This will help you organize your marketing efforts.
Research your target audience in the context of content types they prefer and where they spend their time online. Then, you can create a buyer persona and map the customer journey. It also helps you identify the different types of content to produce for the different spots on the path to purchase.
You should also analyze who comes to your website, follows you on social media, subscribes to your email list, and what they like about your content. Google Analytics gathers data on your website visitors, and almost every social media platform can give you insights regarding following.
Set your content distribution goals
At this point, you should also set the goals for your content distribution marketing to measure the effectiveness of your actions. For example, if your goal is to increase website traffic, a goal would be getting a specific number of website visits in a specific period.
It’s also important to track what content generates the most organic traffic that brings conversions.
If your goal is lead generation, you would want to track the overall number of leads, which pieces of content generated leads, and the percentage of qualified leads.
The key to outlining your business goals is to make them as specific as possible. Some examples of effective KPIs include:
Brand Awareness: Grow new user visits to the website by 25% in six months.
Leads: Increase sales qualified leads by 10% over three months
Marketing: Lower pay-per-click ad spend by 10% by better evaluating what content performs better with the audience
Audit your content
For effective content distribution, you have to analyze the existing content you have published.
Are there any types of content or a publishing platform that have worked particularly well? For example, maybe a particular blog post got more social shares or reactions than other posts you have shared?
A content audit can show you which topics your audience cares about.
Competitive research is also important in content marketing. Go to your competition’s websites and social media accounts to see what content they share. It can give you a competitive advantage and additional insights into what your audience wants in terms of content.
Choose your content distribution channels.
Your content distribution channels can turn out to be even more important than your content. Once you know your target audience and what worked in the past, you’ll have a much better idea of how to get your content in front of the right crowd.
For particular niches posting on forums and communities like Reddit or Quora — and paying to promote your content on those sites can be a great idea. On the other hand, you can exclusively share content on social media channels. However, at times traditional PR is your best bet.
Also, optimize your owned channels – your blog, email newsletter, and social media profiles – as these are quite affordable and under your control.
Even if research indicates that audiences prefer forums to social media or news sites to company blogs, don’t overlook your own channels since they represent your brand and product.
Decide on your content types.
Next, you should think about the types of content you’d like and have the resources to create.
In content marketing, it’s common to publish content on the blog and then repurpose and re-publish it on social media. Blog posts are universally consumed easily to repurpose and translate to other languages.
Creating a business blog and then building your other content types around the blog content to share on other platforms is essential.
Create content calendar
A content calendar is an important component of your overall content marketing plan. This ensures that you have a complete list of all the material you intend to release and when it will be published and how it will be distributed.
It might also include who is responsible for each stage in the content production process and the due date. This ensures that everything goes off without a hitch and on schedule.
Content marketing and distribution require lots of planning to be successful. This is where an editorial content calendar can come in handy. You can create one in Excel or Google Sheets or even use Google Calendar. Tools like CoSchedule, Asana, and Trello are helpful, too.
Like your content distribution strategy, your editorial calendar helps your team stay aligned and work towards common goals. It also gives your writers and editors a roadmap for what they’ll be working on in the coming weeks and months.
Distribute and market your content
Publish and market your new content following your editorial calendar and chosen distribution channels. As for any marketing channel, be sure you follow the rules to optimize your posts on each channel.
For example, our team at HubSpot paid for ads on Reddit and found that it was helpful to organically engage with Redditors and pay for ad space. Alternatively, if you’re posting on (or paying for) social media, be sure to follow the guidelines for the best times to post and share content — the same goes for sending emails.
Measure your results and optimize the content
You’ll want to track the outcomes and then use them to enhance present content and plan future actions based on your objectives and KPIs. Therefore, your goals and KPIs should determine the metrics you measure.
You must first examine the cause of any underperformance. Determine whether it’s due to a flaw in the content, a fault in the channel, or a combination of both. You can then alter the content to make it more useful to your audience or change your approach.
As always, be sure to keep an eye on your content distribution results. Remember those KPIs, metrics, and goals you established previously? Time to pull those out.
After you’ve published your content, take a look at Google Analytics, your social media analytics dashboards, and your blog performance — depending on where and how you distributed the content. Make sure you set a routine time to measure and analyze (weekly, monthly, or quarterly) so that you can establish a baseline and know which numbers you can beat the following week or month.
Whew! So, that’s what it takes to build a content distribution strategy. Be sure to iterate on this process; these guidelines may change as you expand your content and scale your team.
Content distribution tools
To round out your content distribution strategy, there are many tools you can use. Here is a list of the most prominent tools for content distribution:
Mailshake.com – it’s a tool great for personalized email outreach. However, notifying customers manually of new content is very time-consuming. Mailshake helps you automate this process that will save you tons of time.
Medium – it’s a content platform you can use in addition to posting on your blog. Publishing to Medium can increase the number of people who see your content.
Wisestamp.com – it’s a tool that allows you to include links to your most recent piece of content in place of a signature of your emails.
ClicktoTweet.com – it’s a tool that allows you to add share buttons to your content. It also actively identifies portions of each piece, making it easy for people to share a specific part of your article.
GaggleAmp.com – it’s software that allows you to coordinate all your social media shares. It hooks up all the social networks to a central hub, controlling everything about the sharing process in one place.
HubSpot.com – it’s a content management platform for various types of content like social media posts, blog posts, and SEO optimization.
CoSchedule.com – it’s a tool that helps you manage content distribution and schedule social media posts.
Quuu.com – it’s a platform that connects businesses with influencers to promote content.
Taboola.com – it’s a platform that recommends your content at the end of related articles on other blogs.
MeetCortex.com – it’s a tool that enables the analysis of your content to determine what is working and why
Goodbits.io – it allows you to convert your content and put it into an email newsletter.
SocialLocker.org – it’s a tool that makes readers share a piece of content before they can access your page.
Zapier.com – it’s a software letting content distribution tasks like sharing articles on social media platforms as soon as they’re published.
PR Newswire – it’s a platform for press release distribution that connects you with journalists and outlets by specific industries and topics. It allows distribution in the regional and national press.
HARO (Help a Reporter Out) – it’s a platform that brings journalists and sources together. It’s a great tool to get press mentions and backlinks.
AddThis – it’s a social sharing tool. That allows your readers to share your content without leaving your page. It also allows incorporating share buttons into your email newsletter and other pieces of content.
Mention– it’s a social media monitoring tool that provides social media listening and publishing. For example, you can monitor any mentions of your brand name, content, or social networks and respond accordingly.
SharedCount – it’s a tool that measures the engagement of your social media posts. SharedCount reports on your posts’ likes, shares, and comments.
Whether your company is big or small, you always need to promote yourself. Creating and promoting content is the core of content marketing.
Content distribution is a complex process that takes time, research, and effort. The good news is there are many tools to help you along the way. Whether it’s writing content or distributing your articles on social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn, we hope our tips were helpful!