I posted a blog, as I do every week, and followed my usual email distribution and social sharing routine. A few people viewed my profile on Linkedin, and one person in particular caught my eye – the president of a marketing firm that specializes in content marketing for information technology (IT) companies.
I thought this was a great niche because the IT industry is constantly innovating. And great content is needed to introduce and explain those innovations.
Soon after I viewed her profile, she invited me to connect.
I eagerly accepted.
And so we danced.
I followed with a brief note about how I enjoyed reading her company’s website and that we seemed to have a similar approach to content.
We spoke the next day and really hit it off. I quickly learned that she had a run of bad luck with copywriters.
I asked her why other copywriters failed to meet her standards. Were they flaky, unable to learn the subject matter or just bad writers? She said it was a combination of all three.
I admitted to being anything but an IT expert, but I wasn’t an expert out of the gates on most of the topics that I now write about every week. This usually turns out to be a good thing because experts can be too comfortable with certain topics and tend to speak over the heads of their audience.
She agreed and gave me a test assignment.
After receiving my initial draft, she sent me an email that said, “This makes me very happy.”
Within a week, we drew up an agreement and began living happily ever after, working together on blog posts and other marketing content for her company’s clients. And I already know more about the inner workings of corporate IT infrastructure than I thought possible.
This particular encounter had a fairy tale ending. While you can’t expect everyone who finds value in your content to commit after the first date, you can certainly plant the seed for a healthy and productive relationship every time you share quality content.
I’m not telling you this story because I think I’m some kind of content marketing genius. I’m telling you this story because what I did was so ridiculously simple. It was Content Marketing 101.
I wrote a blog, promoting real ideas and solutions instead of myself, and shared it with an audience that I believed would find it valuable and relevant.
Fortunately, Cheryl Cooper from Cooper Marketing Solutions read my post on the B2B Content Marketing group page on Linkedin and happened to have a need for a copywriter.
And today I have a new, biggest client.
On the home page of my website, you’ll find the following sentence:
When you create and share relevant, valuable content on a regular basis, you build the relationships that build and sustain your business.
It’s not a question of whether or not it can be done. Any business on the face of the earth, whether it’s a one-man shop like mine or large corporation, can create content – a blog, newsletter, whatever – and get it in front of the right people. You just have to make the decision to do it.
Then, instead of constantly chasing down new business, the business will start finding you.
Hi Scott, thanks again, I’m sure it will help!
No problem. Thanks for reading!
Scott, thanks for your encouraging story! Can you also share something about the best ways to get your content in front of the right people? To me, that’s the tricky part.
Hi Richard – Well, that’s a loaded question that’s difficult to completely answer here. The first step is to identify your target audience as specifically as possible. For example, if you say your audience is women, you’re not being specific enough. If you say your audience is on-the-go professional moms age 30-50 who make six figures, you’re off to a good start. Then, determine who your audience consumes content. What social platforms do they use? What groups on those platforms do they belong to? Also, build and update an email database. Finally, make sure your content is mobile friendly or you’ll lose a large, valuable portion of your audience before they even get a chance to read your content. There’s more to it, but I hope this helps! Thanks – Scott
Arlene O'Reilly says
Kevin, Great story! You’ve showed the value of doing this work for the right and best reasons.
Thanks, Arlene! It just seems like a no-brainer to me, and I wonder why any business would not be creating and sharing content on a regular basis.