Content Marketing for Startups [Review]

Ashley Hobb
The amazing EventMobi posted this photo to Twitter. The Growth Hacking event took place at their office.

EventMobi posted this photo of Brian speaking to a packed house, on Twitter. The Growth Hacking with Content Marketing event took place at their spacious office.

When you think of content marketing, you might think automatically think of big-budget viral videos such as Red Bull’s Stratus mission with Felix Baumgartner or Volvo’s “The Epic Split” featuring Jean-Claude Van Damme. CIMA President, Brian Rotsztein, recently demystified content marketing to a group of more than 40 people from the startup community at a Growth Hacking Toronto event.

Content marketing is not a useful marketing tool because of its ability to go viral. It’s useful because of its ability to connect with target customers in a meaningful way. Brian explained to the audience how content marketing doesn’t have to be big-budget and outlined some key steps to getting the most out of their content marketing.

Knowing your customer

Startups that launch their business thinking “we have to target everyone” are at a disadvantage. No business can effectively service everybody, especially not in the beginning stages. It is helpful to take the time and really get to know your target market.

Brian outlined how to pin down your target market:

  • Brainstorm what your product or service is and who is most likely to find it useful.
  • Explore online data sources to gather and interpret demographics and psychographics.
  • Develop customer profiles and keep those profiles in mind when creating marketing content.

Think of content marketing as a lead-generator for a niche audience

While a guest blog post or video content might not go viral, it could strike a chord with your target customer. Chances are, if they find value in the information you are sharing, they are more likely to visit your website to see what you have to offer.

Brian advised looking for bloggers with a big audience that are writing about your field of interest. Offer to contribute content that their audience will find informative and useful. There many free resources to help create a variety of content including videos and infographics.

Encourage sharing

Sometimes social currency can go a long way to generate leads. Brian outlined a number of ways to encourage content sharing.

For example, you can embed Click to Tweet in the middle of your blog posts. This invites your visitors to share your information, while allowing you to control the message.

You could also hide a portion of your content, which can be unlocked by either sharing on Twitter or Facebook or by hitting +1 on Google+. If you use WordPress, this can be done using Social Locker.

It is amazing to think that when a small organization does a few activities with excellent execution, it can make a monumental different in generating client leads. The audience at Growth Hacking Toronto certainly appreciated the actionable takeaways they received during the presentation.

Brian’s book, Content Marketing Ideas, on which the presentation was based will be published this summer.

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