Why You Need More Than Social Shares To Amplify Content

By Al Gomez

Jun 2, 2017

Content Amplification

A statistics from Hubspot revealed that B2B marketers allocate 28% of their marketing budget to content marketing. However, about 55% of these B2B marketers also admitted that they are not sure of what content marketing success looks like. 

Marketers like you would probably think that perhaps getting a lot of social shares from different social media channels means that you have been effective in your content marketing strategy. But the truth is, you are far from content marketing success.

Success in content marketing is not measured by the number of shares you got from social media.

I came across a lot of viral contents such as videos, memes, and quizzes on Facebook and other social media and frankly, it’s amazing how these contents captured the attention of thousands and even millions of users. But the real question is; how many of these users have actually read and linked to such contents? 

Truth be told, the real work begins with content amplification.

Content marketing does not end after hitting “publish” nor does it end after you have gained a decent amount of shares. Your content needs to help you build authority, drive traffic and increase conversions to be considered effective. This is where content amplification comes in handy.

Content amplification is a process that makes your content stand out amidst the competition. A recent survey shows that over the last five years, the average blog post published per brand increased by a whopping 800%. With such competition, it is really crucial for brands to amplify their content. 

Content must gain enough number of both links and shares to have a sustainable growth.

Here are some noteworthy tips you can try for to build an effective content amplification strategy.

Find The Balance Between Shares And Links

As much as you want to attract more shares, you also need people to link to your content. While shares can help in content awareness, it will only last for a short period of time. If social media users miss a post on their feed, it’s likely they won’t find it again.

Backlinks are there to stay. As more people link to your content, chances are it will only grow. They stay much longer than your status or tweet. Moreover, backlinks are still a powerful ranking factor in SERPS.

Some content like listicles, infographics and quizzes may attract more shares while white papers and long, in-depth articles usually get more links. You need to find a way to compromise both to gain both shares and links.

So what kind of content do people share and what kind of content would they want to link to?

That’s the question you need to answer to create content that attracts both links and shares.

According to Content Marketing Institute, there are different reasons why people share or link to content. But if there is one thing in common among them is that people love valuable content.

Social Shares Vs Links

With this in mind, as a marketer, you should experiment with different content types which drive shares and links towards your content. Here are some tips to get you started.

  • Focus your content on answering popular questions
  • Be clear with your stand on a topic you discuss
  • Offer practical advice to new developments and updates
  • Make your content concise but insightful
  • Support your content with well-researched data

Content amplification starts from the moment you have chosen your topic and started your content creation. From that point, think about how will your content perform and how will your readers respond to what they read.

Create An Effective Amplification Strategy

Choose The Right Content To Amplify: This is a very common misconception among most marketers. Not all content you publish is excellent. You cannot waste your time amplifying a content, which, in the first place, would not work.

Content amplification doesn’t mean you should amplify everything. Start your content amplification right by choosing the best content. If you want the best out of your campaign, make use of the best.

Utilise Targeted Emailing: One of the most straightforward ways to encourage people to share and link to your content is to email them. However, it can be tricky. Readers are already bombarded with irrelevant and sale pitches in their emails. So how will you make them open and read yours? 

Here are a few things to remember: 

Avoid copy/paste messages. Customise them and if possible, use the names of the receivers to address them. Avoid being pushy and keep your messages short but concise. And don’t forget advertising polite.

Do Your SEO: Manual promotion is still a very important factor when it comes to search visibility. Through addressing some technical SEO factors such as meta tags and keywords you can improve the visibility of your content in search.

Tap Into Influencers Through Niche Communities: Contrary to what you may think, you don’t tap into influencers just to make them share your content. You need to tap into them so they are genuinely interested in your content. 

By interacting with them through various niche communities such as Linkedin, Growth Hackers and Inbound.org, you will be able to connect with influencers and engage with them. This may be a long shot, but when you finally build a genuine connection with them, it becomes a lot easier for you to encourage them to share and link to your content.

Add Some Paid Promotion: You can no longer deny the fact that free promotion is getting more and more difficult. Somehow, you need to get into paid advertising, such as Facebook and Google ads to expand your reach. You can also use paid platforms such as Outbrain, Taboola and nRelate to amplify content discovery.

Invest In Content Amplification Tools: If you stick with manual promotion, you will end up far behind the race. You need these amplification tools to speed up the process. Content marketing tools like Buzzsumo and Almighty.Press update you with trending news and topics relevant to your industry. While online tools like Buffer, Quuu and Oktopost allow you to streamline your content promotion.

Overall, Social Sharing Isn’t Enough To Amplify Your Content (Not Even Close)

We, too, once thought that social sharing is enough to promote our content. But to our disappointment, we rarely enjoyed the return of investment we expected from our content social shares.

Similarly, you may gain a lot of content shares but what else does it do aside from that? Can you gain links? Does it build authority? Does it drive traffic? Does it convert? There’s a lot more to do before you can say you’ve reached “content marketing success”.

Content amplification is a process, and social sharing is just a tiny detail of the whole process. It is just one piece of the puzzle. Your job is to put together every piece to form a complete image. You can only do that if you evaluate your content amplification strategy and focus on both shares and links.

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