How to crack the Content Code
Sales & Marketing for Professional Services

How to crack the Content Code

October 11, 2013

by Tony Vidler

……Yeah, I think social media would be useful….but I have nothing to write about and nothing to say….

What content to share seems to be one of the main barriers to financial advisers using social media and digital marketing.

There are several strategies you can use, either in isolation or tandem, for your content sharing.

You can:

1.  Create you own content

2.  Curate others content

3.  Aggregate content

4.  Distill others content

Which method, or combination of methods, is best for you depends on the time you have available for content creation (and the time it takes you to create it); the budget and support levels you are able to allocate to it, and your strategic objective in terms of personal positioning.

For instance, if you wish to establish a reputation as an authority in a certain area, then creation and original content is a significant element in establishing your expertise and credibility.  If you are aiming to achieve a place in your target markets minds as being a trusted source of valuable information that is relevant to them, then content curation is effective.

Creation is simply arranging and delivering your own thinking and ideas.  The variety of content methods are enormous, including written articles (whitepapers, blogs, expert commentary in groups and forums, media releases or articles you feature in), info graphs (your presentations shared to Slideshare, visual aids and charts, graphics designed to convey thoughts, statistics or concepts in an instant), video’s, podcasts, webinars and so on…

This is an area that many financial advisers struggle with….yet….every day in client engagements we create content.  Clients ask questions, or highlight an area of confusion that requires more information, or we find ourselves expressing a complex thought in a new and easy to comprehend method during a conversation….THAT is content worth sharing with others!

Any of the areas where we find ourselves having to explain or provide comprehension or context to clients is potentially content for other potential customers.  What is of relevance or interest to your existing customers is highly likely to be of relevance and interest to future potential customers.

Curation is essentially sharing other people’s content.  If others are producing really useful and relevant content that your target market will enjoy, then it is worth sharing with your target market.   Good information is good information….whether you thought it up or not.

Aggregation is gathering good content and compiling it into an easy to find, or easy to read digest.  That can be a combination of content you produce, and content from others, but it is presented in a composite format, which is in itself new content.

Distillation is picking out the highlights from others content, and then presenting that in a digest form, or as the base for further commentary by yourself.

Each of these methods have merit and purpose, and it is worth considering using a blend of techniques to deliver a consistent stream of relevant and useful content.  Some methods of content creation are harder than others, requiring either more time, or effort & creativity, or financial resources.  A fabulous depiction of the degree of difficulty, or effort, required for the different types of content is shown below:

This superb graph is from a great article on creating content:

5 Content Creation Infographics

The best graphical explanation of how modern marketing works, and where different content fits into the overall marketing and sales process is here:

The Content Marketing Mix Infographic

Creating content is not as difficult as most believe it to be….in fact you don’t even have to create it at all to begin with.  Cracking the content code for professionals is a simple as understanding your choices to begin with; choosing a strategy to start with; and being mindful that you are already producing content worth sharing in virtually every client engagement.


© 2013 Tony Vidler.  All rights reserved.
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