In this final part of our four part series, we’re discussing how to build and maintain community relationships using your content. One of the best parts of creating and sharing great content is connecting with your community. You can learn a lot from your community if you take the time to listen. Though the members of your community can give you a good indication of whether or not they find your content valuable, through various social options, (sharing your posts, comments, tweets and quoting your content) it is always a good idea to get direct feedback.
Get Feedback from Your Community
You can collect feedback from your community in a number of ways. Consider periodic online surveys, feedback forms, attendee surveys at your next webinar or conference, or even building a questionnaire into your next email newsletter. If you plan on measuring and analyzing this information (and why wouldn’t you?) just be sure you are consistent and ask the same questions across your selected time period so you can measure any changes in awareness, sentiment, etc.
Categorizing your content to provide relevance to your community can be very helpful. For example, if you’ve categorized all of your content about your corporate events as “Events”, someone visiting your website or this information would only have to select that category to see all the content you’ve shared on the subject.
You can also help build a strong relationship with your community by providing them with informational and educational content. In other words, content that will help them be more successful, do their jobs better or make them that much wiser in their field.
How will you know what type of content your community will find valuable or educational? It all goes back to asking the right questions. Take the responses you have received from your feedback forms, surveys, etc. and spend some time evaluating them to see if there are areas for improvement. Are you covering the topics your community is looking to learn more about? Are they asking for information you can provide? If so, and you plan to put their suggestions to good use, be sure to let your community know that you will be incorporating their suggestions. One way to acknowledge your community’s contributions would be to thank them publicly on your site. Give them all the credit they deserve for helping you to continue to grow and improve. Keep an open line of communication between you and your community members. Let them know they are one of the most important, if not the most important, driving force behind your brand.
Both your content and relationships are blooming. It’s an exciting time and more opportunities await. We may be winding down, but we’re not done yet! Our last chapter wraps it up and throws in a few more nuggets.
Putting it all Together
There are always ways to enhance your content. So before we wrap up, let’s stretch this content-aboutcontent eBook a bit further with some final food for thought.
Put content at the center of your marketing strategy – The content you create will be a traffic-driver, conversation starter, information-enricher and an awareness-builder. It can even be a conversion-leader. What marketer wouldn’t want that as part of their approach? Marketing can even allocate dollars to your content and help promote your eBooks and webinars.
To make that happen, ensure the entire team is on-board with your content strategy and make sure it aligns with marketing’s goals as well. Communication and dialogue are key and it can only lead to great things for your brand.
Be in the know – We all know the social web is constantly changing and that means new ways to promote content and new content formats. Keep up on the latest news and information in this space to ensure you remain relevant. Attend conferences, follow content and social media experts on Twitter and read blog posts. You can even share your knowledge and be seen as an expert yourself!
It’s okay to reach out – Remember when you had to sell cookies in school and you asked your Mom to buy some? If you’re just starting out with your content, feel free to talk to close friends, colleagues, brand advocates (and why not Mom, especially if she’s in your industry!) about your new venture. Share it with them, get their feedback and ask if they know anyone who would also enjoy it. We all have networks and it’s a great way to get your feet off the ground.
In this 4 part series, we explored ways for your content to spread throughout social media, enabling you to build and enhance relationships and empower your community. We did this through the development of a successful content strategy, looking at the different types of content, how to share this great content with your community and how to build relationships as a result. We hope you will be able to take this information and begin to develop or refine your content strategy.
Are you feeling empowered to start your content strategy? Or if you have one in place, do you feel there are some updates that can be made to make it even stronger? Consider your community along with your brand goals and your content will go further than ever before.