Why you need current online content (or, one reason to prove to your customers that your firm is an ongoing, viable concern)

This is a follow up to my post from two days ago…with a critical data point.

In that prior post, I listed some ways that a company’s website and social media channels could look attractive or unattractive to customers. I focused on the second of my three issues, which was whether the website/channels have current content.

But that prior post consisted of my opinions regarding why your company should hire Bredemarket to work with you on written content creation. Obviously self-serving.

But to be honest, is current content all that important? “Does website and social media content really matter?” you may ask. “Don’t B2B customers gather data by word of mouth anyway?”

The Demand Gen Report June 2020 B2B Buyer Behavior Study

Um…word of mouth is not that prevalent, according to Demand Gen Report, which released a B2B study last June entitled “2020 B2B Buyer Behavior Study.” You can download that study yourself for free here.

Much of the study concentrated specifically on COVID-19 related effects, but one item on pages 7 and 8 of the study caught my eye.

This portion of the study concentrated on the sources that B2B purchasers referenced when making buying decisions. Specifically, the survey participants were asked, “What were the first three resources that informed you about the solution in question?” Responses were as follows:

  • Web search: 53%
  • Vendor web sites: 41%
  • Review sites: 30%
  • Prior experience with the vendor: 28%
  • Peers/colleagues: 27%

Yes, almost twice as many B2B buyers depend upon the web for initial research rather than asking peers and colleagues.

Demand Gen Report offered the following comments on these and related responses (emphasis mine):

Making a positive first impression is important in any buying situation, but the survey showed that it is becoming an even more critical part of the buyer journey. Not surprisingly, most buying journeys start online, with a general web search, specific vendor websites and review sites as the first resources buyers used to inform them about a specific topic area related to their purchase….

The survey underscored that content remains a critical influence on B2B buying decisions, with 76% of respondents saying the winning vendor’s content had a significant impact on their buying decision.

Demand Gen Report, 2020 B2B Buyer Behavior Study, page 7. Available via download (5,664KB).

Now I don’t want to quote the entire study: again, you can download the study yourself. And I’ll admit that I’m only concentrating on a portion of the entire study.

But there’s no denying that a company’s online content is critical in B2B buying decisions.

Does your content cater to potential buyer behavior?

So, is your website and social media content the content that you want your customers to see?

  • Have you posted product-specific content on your website blog and/or your website “news” page in the last 3 months?
  • How about your website case studies, product data sheets, testimonials, white papers, and/or presentations? Are these recent, or is your company relying on past successes and failing to communicate present successes?
  • Have you posted relevant content on your company LinkedIn page in the last 3 months?
  • How about your other company social media outlets? Facebook? Instagram? Twitter? YouTube?

Although I refrain from linking to them, I know of countless bad examples of outdated content. Web “news” pages or social media accounts with no posts in years. LinkedIn company pages with no posts at all. Companies that haven’t posted presentations in a decade. Data sheets that prominently mention a product’s compatibility with Windows 7. Companies that post wonderful YouTube videos, but then fail to share the video link on their other social media channels or on their own website.

Call to (your) action

This is the part of the post where I share my “contact with me!” pitch, but before I do that, perhaps you should take the following steps yourself.

  1. Take a look at your website and your social media channels from the view of one of your potential customers. When putting the “customer” hat on, do you like what you see?
  2. If you don’t like what you see, what are you going to do about it?

Now perhaps Bredemarket is NOT the answer to question 2. Perhaps you have an employee who has the time to update your content, and do so on a regular basis.

But if you find that you need outside help in creating content (short blog posts, longer white papers, whatever), feel free to contact Bredemarket.

As a reminder, my process to work with a client to create content is a collaborative process. For example, here’s the process that Bredemarket uses when working with a client to produce written text of approximately 2800 to 3200 words, such as the content for a white paper.

  • Agree upon topic (and, if necessary, outline) with client.
  • Client provides relevant technical details.
  • Bredemarket conducts any necessary research and provides the first review copy within seven (7) calendar days.
  • Client provides changes and any additional requested detail within seven (7) calendar days.
  • Bredemarket provides the second review copy within seven (7) calendar days.
  • Client provides changes and any requested detail within seven (7) calendar days.
  • Bredemarket provides the third review copy within seven (7) calendar days.
  • Client prepares the final formatted copy and provides any post-formatting comments within seven (7) calendar days.
  • Bredemarket provides the final version within seven (7) calendar days.

(By the way, these times are maximum times. For the white papers that I have written, both the client and I have provided our deliverables in less than seven days, and we didn’t need all of the review cycles. Better preparation up-front minimizes the need to fix things at the end.)

A similar (but simpler) process is used for shorter Bredemarket writing projects of approximately 400 to 600 words, such as blog posts or LinkedIn posts.

Regardless of the specifics of the process, the goal is to work together to create text that states your company’s message and attracts your company’s desired clients.

And letting your potential customers know that you exist.

Three ways to prove to your customers that your firm is an ongoing, viable concern

[Update, January 27, 2021: a July 2020 study from Demand Gen Report explains WHY up-to-date content is important. I addressed that study in this post.]

When a customer is looking for a business to provide products and/or services, the customer would probably prefer to deal with a business that is not bankrupt.

Now I haven’t conducted specific surveys on this topic. This is just a wild hunch that I have. (As the meme says, prove me wrong.)

The search for viable businesses also applies in B2B relationships also, or businesses that provide services to businesses. Bredemarket, of course, provides marketing and writing services to businesses, and I’d be wasting my time if I pursued businesses that no longer existed.

What if your business IS still an active business, but just LOOKS like it no longer exists?

I’m going to list a few things that I check out, either when Bredemarket is looking at selling something to potential clients, or when I as a potential customer want to buy something. If you’re a business owner, here is a three question checklist to ask yourself when you look at your website and your social media channels.

  1. Make sure your business website still exists.
  2. Make sure the business website and social media channels have current content.
  3. Get the copyright date right.

After looking at these three items in the checklist, I’ll then have a few more comments on the SECOND of these three items, current (NOT outdated) content, because this is the one for which Bredemarket (or another consultant, or perhaps one of your own employees) can have the most impact.

Checklist Item 1: Make sure your business website still exists

This sounds like a no-brainer, but I’ll say it anyway. If a business website no longer exists, either the business is bankrupt, or the business has changed its marketing and forgot to take care of a loose end or two.

Just today I was surveying local businesses in a particular industry, and I ran across the Google listing for a particular business. The business was highly rated in Google reviews, so I checked out the business a little more. In the process of checking out the business, I found its Yelp page, which had one negative review (and an explanatory reply from the business owner). I also found a social media page for the business, which included a post about the company’s brand new location and how wonderful it was.

But in between checking out the Google listing and the Yelp page, I happened to check the business’ own website. This website was prominently mentioned on Google, Yelp, and the social media channel. And when I followed the link to that website, I saw this.

Now I’m going to give the business the benefit of the doubt and assume that the business DIDN’T send unsolicited commercial email, violate copyright, or used fraudulent credit cards. (If it did, the business owner is in REAL trouble right now.)

I’m just going to assume that the company didn’t pay its web hosting bill.

Why am I assuming this? Because after I visited the web page, I looked at the Google listing again, and took a more careful look at the other content that I found on Yelp and the social media channel. When doing so, I noticed that no reviews or other content had been posted about the business in more than a year. (See the second item on the checklist, below.) So my guess is that the business is no more.

Now, of course it’s possible that the business is still operating in a minimal way, without a website. (If I felt like it, I could drive by the new location advertised on its social media channel and see what’s there.) Or perhaps the business created a new website with a different URL and never closed the old one.

But do people really want to do business with a company that doesn’t pay its bills?

Checklist Item 2: Make sure the business website and social media channels have current content

Lack of current content is something that troubles bankrupt companies and ongoing companies alike. Ever since I started Bredemarket, I’ve dealt with several companies that are facing a “dated content” problem. Now I know that these companies aren’t bankrupt, and are in fact bringing in revenue; it’s just that their content is outdated.

What usually happens, in small and large companies alike, is that an effort is made at some point to “spruce up” the content of a website and/or its social media channels. Perhaps an employee is assigned to this task, or perhaps a consultant does it. (I’ve done both.) A heroic effort is undertaken, and a bunch of new content is produced, impressing the company heads and the company’s clients.

But then…things happen, and next thing you know your online channels have content that is three years old…or ten years old.

Or if the exact year of the content isn’t explicitly identified, there are clues within the content itself as to its age, such as “Our product is now supported on Windows 7.”

What are the ramifications of dated content? Visitors begin to wonder why there isn’t any new content.

  • Perhaps the company went bankrupt; see my first checklist item, above.
  • Perhaps the company is still a going concern, but hasn’t done anything in the last few years. Maybe that great customer reference from three years ago was the last new customer that the company got, or maybe that great presentation from several years ago was the last time the company presented anything.
  • Perhaps the company has continued to do business, but its more recent business isn’t as impressive as its previous business.
  • The most positive explanation is that the company HAS done amazing things in the last few years, but hasn’t taken the time to tell the story of its most recent accomplishments. (TL;DR: I can help.)

Now I don’t always eat my own wildebeest food myself in this regard. I’ve previously noted that my Empoprise-NTN blog isn’t updated regularly; in fact, it has only had one update in the last five years. (And no, I can’t really use COVID as an excuse.)

If you’re a business owner, ask yourself: do you want your business social media channels to look as outdated as the Empoprise-NTN blog? I don’t think you do.

Checklist Item 3: Get the copyright date right

This is a simple little thing, but it can stick out when it’s not fixed.

Now I’m writing this in January of a new year, so I’ll cut a little bit of slack here for companies with a “Copyright © 2020” notice on their web pages that hasn’t been updated to 2021 yet.

But if your website still says “Copyright © 2019,” fix it. Now.

Incidentally, I found a site that says “Copyright © 1996-2019” at the top of the page, and “Copyright © 2021” at the bottom of the page. Confusing.

But let’s get back to Checklist Item 2

Outdated copyright notices are more of a nuisance than anything else, and if your company has already gone bankrupt there isn’t much that can be done.

Outdated content is something that a company CAN remedy. And it’s something that the company SHOULD remedy.

Neil Patel provides one practical reason for removing outdated content:

The more low-quality content you have on your site, the less authoritative you’ll look to Google, and the harder it will be to rank.

But that’s just Google. Google and Bing are important, but perhaps not as important as real people.

Hugh Duffy wonders how those real people react to outdated content.

An outdated site makes your firm seem behind the times. These days, that can be cause for potential clients to steer clear. They think if you’re not updating your site, there may be other aspects of your business left unattended.

You don’t want your dated website to cause Google to question it, and you certainly don’t want your dated website to cause living breathing people to question it.

So fix the content in the website and the social media channels!

To fix an outdated content issue, you just have to ask yourself a few questions.

  • What do you want your online channels to say (the message)?
  • What recent examples can you cite in your online channels that support your desired message?
  • Who knows about these recent examples? (The account manager? The program manager? The customer?)
  • Who can talk to these subject matter experts (SMEs) and convert the examples into the proper messaging?

Now of course the step of eliciting the correct information from the SMEs and finalizing a written message has its own sub-process. For example, here’s the process that Bredemarket uses when working with a client to produce written text of approximately 2800 to 3200 words, such as the content for a white paper.

  • Agree upon topic (and, if necessary, outline) with client.
  • Client provides relevant technical details.
  • Bredemarket conducts any necessary research and provides the first review copy within seven (7) calendar days.
  • Client provides changes and any additional requested detail within seven (7) calendar days.
  • Bredemarket provides the second review copy within seven (7) calendar days.
  • Client provides changes and any requested detail within seven (7) calendar days.
  • Bredemarket provides the third review copy within seven (7) calendar days.
  • Client prepares the final formatted copy and provides any post-formatting comments within seven (7) calendar days.
  • Bredemarket provides the final version within seven (7) calendar days.

(By the way, these times are maximum times. For the white papers that I have written, both the client and I have provided our deliverables in less than seven days, and we didn’t need all of the review cycles. Better preparation up-front minimizes the need to fix things at the end.)

A similar (but simpler) process is used for shorter Bredemarket writing projects of approximately 400 to 600 words, such as blog posts or LinkedIn posts.

Regardless of the process(es) that I use, or that another consultant uses, or perhaps one of your employees uses, the goal is to create written text that meets your company’s needs.

And if you have an outdated content problem and need a consultant to help you fix it, contact me.

Revisiting my “have fun” goal

When thinking about content to create, there’s one idea that I’ve had. “Over the course of 2021, why don’t I make a point of revisiting my 2021 goals and seeing how I’m doing on them?” (Content repurposing and extending for the win.)

I hope to soon revisit my multiple income streams goal. But for now, this is an ideal time to revisit my “have fun” goal.

I’ve already talked about how I snuck iguanas into a proposal for a potential client.

Well, I just had the opportunity to write a proposal for a particular opportunity.

The title of the opportunity?

“Funny and Witty Creative Writer.”

The potential client needs to create some content, but fears that if the content is too dry, it won’t be digested by the people who read the content.

So the opportunity description talked about how the content needs to be funny and witty.

I certainly had fun when I wrote my proposal to this client. Iguanas made another appearance, for example. But I also pointed out that funny and witty is NOT enough.

Here’s how my proposal began.

Having read your description of the work needed, I believe that I can provide the balance that you implicitly requested – namely, a balance between conveying the necessary content, but conveying it in an interesting manner. A service provider that can only do one without the other is as useful as a two-wheeled automobile – you’re not going to get anywhere.

My proposal continued by describing the types of content that I could provide before veering into…iguanas. (I’m going to need to find another example. The poor iguana is getting tired of being used over and over again.)

My iguana content started with a story about my former coworker who despises the cliché “best of breed.” She managed technical proposals, not entrants to the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.

By Kjunstorm (Lori) – https://www.flickr.com/photos/kjunstorm/3346671755/, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=6605832

This example served to explain why one of my 2021 goals was NOT to “eat my own dog food.” Continuing my story, I then reproduced some of the text that I’ve already reproduced in this post.

After some more of the same, I changed from a yuk-yuk tone to a more serious tone. Leaving out some of the “fun” text, this is what I said to my potential client.

So what have I done here?

I have satisfied the requirements in your description by using a conversational tone that employs storytelling.

I’ve provided you with links to my web and social media content, and given you an incentive to explore them….

I have ensured that you understand my distinction between “fun writing” and “fun writing with a purpose.” You still need to convey the content.

The examples that were provided, including the attachment, exhibit different facets of my writing style, and also exhibit the breadth of topics that I can address.

We’ll see if my conversational, iguana-infused tone will actually help me get business with this particular client, and if the client is prepared to address more serious topics, such as the overall goal of the content that the client wants me to create.

While it’s important to have fun, it’s important that the fun contributes to the overall goal. Remember when I told a group of people at work that I was going to “play” with something? Some of my coworkers understood that I wasn’t going to play for play’s sake. They understood that I was going to play and ensure that the item in question achieved the goals set by the corporation.

Have fun…with a purpose.

And remember that different clients have different needs and require different conversational tones. Perhaps I may have fun while RESEARCHING the benefits and risks of using temperature sensors as a COVID-19 response, but I may choose NOT to exhibit a “fun” tone while WRITING about these benefits and risks.

(Oh, and if the “funny and witty creative writer” potential client happens to read this particular post while reviewing my writing examples, I’ll give you a bonus iguana color: orange. Let’s talk about that…and other things.)

While the contractors test the service providers, the service providers also test the contractors

When I wrote Bredemarket’s goals for 2021 (latest version here), my second goal was to pursue multiple income streams. This requires me to sign up with various middlepersons that marry service providers (such as Bredemarket) to contractors.

Or to TRY to sign up to such middlepersons.

I signed up with one such middleperson a month and a half ago, and never heard back from them. I had occasion to ask someone from the middleperson how long signup takes, and the person indicated that the process should complete within 10 business days. So I contacted the middleperson to see where my application stood, and waited…and waited…and eventually re-read the signup process instructions and realized that the middleperson only contacted SUCCESSFUL applicants. Non-successful applicants receive no response.

Anyway, there’s another middleperson that’s much better at these sorts of things, and I’m trying to solicit work from that service. Essentially you bid on jobs by providing a rate and a text-based technical proposal. After that you either hear from the potential contractor…or you don’t.

I began wondering if there was a way to increase my chances of hearing from the potential contractor.

As I was bidding on a content and social media strategy opportunity, I hit upon an idea.

After describing the service that I would provide, but before my call to action, I included the following section in my text proposal. (If you read my goal 2, you already know why I talk about iguanas.) Pay special attention to the last paragraph.

REFERENCE WEBSITES

If you’re contracting with someone to manage your company’s social media, you’re probably asking if I eat my own iguana food. (Dog food is boring.) Please check out my Bredemarket and Bredemarket-related online channels:

Website: https://bredemarket.com/

Blog: https://bredemarket.com/blog/

LinkedIn page: https://www.linkedin.com/company/bredemarket/

LinkedIn identity showcase page: https://www.linkedin.com/showcase/bredemarket-identity-firm-services/

LinkedIn technology showcase page: https://www.linkedin.com/showcase/bredemarket-technology-firm-services/

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Bredemarket/

Professional Twitter account: https://twitter.com/jebredcal

Personal Instagram account: https://www.instagram.com/johnebredehoft/

I do not have Pinterest, Snapchat, or TikTok accounts, and I have not posted YouTube videos in years.

Incidentally, if you check out the links above, one of them will specify the color of the iguana. Let me know if you see it.

I have no idea who the potential contractor is, but I’m hoping that he/she is an ex-IDEMIA employee who exhibits curiosity. If so, the person may click on the links to discover the color of the iguana.

If so, I could be really cruel and wait to reveal the iguana’s color until the very last link (Instagram).

But I’m a nice guy. The color of the iguana is being revealed right here, in the second link (the Bredemarket blog). THE COLOR OF THE IGUANA IS PURPLE. (Color purple. Geddit?)

Then again…perhaps I’ll specify a DIFFERENT iguana color in one, or more, of my OTHER social media channels.

There may be an entire army of multicolored iguanas waiting to be discovered.

Obviously I’m wondering if my potential contractor is curious. And I might be wondering if others are curious.

Have fun. (Goal 5.)

Are longer posts better? It depends.

I may be a writer who specializes in biometrics, but I write about other things also.

Perhaps you didn’t know this, but my favorite record album of all time is The Beatles, more commonly known as The White Album. Side 3 of that album concludes with a George Harrison song, “Long, Long, Long.”

Harrison was NOT talking about blogging when he wrote “Long, Long, Long.” Heck, we didn’t even have Usenet back in 1968. But if “Long, Long, Long” had been about blogging, most people would think that Harrison lived in a crackerbox palace.

Ain’t She Sweet, when sweet is a blog post?

For years, I’ve subscribed to the theory that blog posts need to be short and sweet, and have corrected myself when I thought that my blog posts were getting too long. After all, my first blog post in October 2003 was only two paragraphs long. My second consisted of a single sentence.

However, the vast majority of my subsequent posts were much longer, which finally led me to try to embrace succinct writing. Or try to, anyway.

Even Bredemarket’s business tactics are geared toward shorter blog posts. The reason that Bredemarket 400 is called Bredemarket 400 is because the target minimum length is 400 words. I’d certainly be open to writing a 2800 word blog post—after all, it provides me with more revenue—but so far my blog post customers have preferred the shorter length.

And the shorter length seems to fit the consumption preferences of some people. When seeking information, many people prefer a few minutes of reading to an hour of reading. Even if something is broken up into a series of posts, do you really want to read a 27-part series?

But what if posts aren’t read by people?

Which brings me to a comment that I made toward the end of a recent, short blog post.

Perhaps you’ve seen my post “Rhonda Salvestrini and her secret salesperson.” As I concluded that post, I inserted the following:

And yes, Rhonda, this blog post has far fewer than 3,000 words…

Most of the people who read the post may not have had any idea why I said that. But Rhonda certainly knew, because in the interview that formed the basis for my post, Salvestrini briefly referred to a preferred blog post length of 3,000 words or more. She didn’t really go into detail about WHY longer blog posts are better, since this was outside of the scope of the interview.

So I looked up the topic.

One of the items that came up in my search was a Neil Patel post entitled “Why 3,000+ Word Blog Posts Get More Traffic (A Data-Driven Answer).”

Yes, friends, the reason that longer blog posts are better is derived from…science. (No, I won’t post the song. You can find it yourself.)

By dm4244 – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=63061280

You see, short blog posts can be great if a human is reading them. (Or perhaps not. We’ll come back to this later, when I give you 70 reasons why longer posts can be better in some cases.)

But in many cases, HUMANS AREN’T THE ONES READING BLOG POSTS. At least not directly.

Perhaps I’m going out on a limb here, but I suspect that most of you don’t wake up every morning and say to yourselves, “I’d better go check the Bredemarket web site and see if there’s a new blog post.” That’s NOT how this website, or many websites, get the majority of their traffic. In many cases, people visit a particular blog post because they’re searching for an answer to a question.

A question that they asked a search engine.

As a result, the people aren’t reading the blog posts. THE SEARCH ENGINE is reading them.

And how do search engines find content? Patel’s post links to another post that discusses long-tail search engine optimization. In brief, this post asserts (and Patel agrees) that more descriptive phrases are more beneficial than single words.

Let’s use an example, and say that you’re looking for a writer who specializes in biometrics. If you search for “biometrics,” you will get a lot of results that don’t really pertain to what you’re seeking. Perhaps “biometric writing” might be better, but, as I found out (iguana food, you know), that presented a number of results about a particular biometric modality. “A writer who specializes in biometrics,” while not yielding perfect results (yet), appears to provide results that are much closer to what you’re seeking.

Back to Neil Patel. His post includes a graphic (I don’t have permission to reproduce it here, so you’ll have to find it) that asserts that 70% of search traffic is long-tail traffic. And it stands to reason that longer posts will tend to have more of those longer phrases that are search engine gold. (Don’t try shorter posts that use keyword stuffing; Google’s on to that.)

In summary, posts often AREN’T read by people, but by search engines that are seeking the phrases for which searchers desire the answers to questions.

Why not go to seventy different sites to answer your question?

But Patel asserts that there are other advantages to longer posts. One of these is the fact that a comprehensive post on a particular topic will serve the reader better, since it can answer all of his or her questions.

How many of you groaned when you saw my question above about visiting seventy different sites? If you want a comprehensive answer to your question, I’m sure that most people would prefer to read one comprehensive well-written post instead of reading seventy different posts.

Here’s part of what Patel said on this particular topic:

You’re perceived as an authority in your industry. Your audience appreciates comprehensive posts that delve into intricacies of their pain points. They won’t need to jump on 10 different websites to get the same information.

Yeah, Patel referenced ten sites while I referenced seventy. My pain points are truly painful.

A few moments ago, I made the statement that “short blog posts can be great if a human is reading them.” This is sometimes true, and sometimes not true, depending upon what the human wants to know.

  • If the human’s question is fairly simple—for example, “When did the Cuban Missile Crisis occur?”—then a short post with a single sentence may be sufficient.
  • But what if the human asks a more complex question—for example, “WHY did the Cuban Missile Crisis occur?”—many people aren’t going to be satisfied with a one-sentence answer. This article devotes over 2,500 words to the topic.

So, who’s right on blog post length?

If you’ve come to this post to find the definitive answer on blog post length, I’m going to have to disappoint you.

Blog posts are designed to do one of the following three things:

Regardless of attention span, SEO, or anything else, a blog post will be as long as it needs to be to satisfy its purpose. (Yes, I’m channeling Abraham Lincoln here.)

This particular post is roughly 1,200 words long, which is too long for a “succinct” blog post and too short for a Patel-optimized blog post. But I don’t feel like padding it to get to an optimum word length, and I don’t feel like cutting anything.

I especially don’t want to cut the George Harrison song.

Rhonda Salvestrini and her secret salesperson

I just listened to an interview of Rhonda Salvestrini, conducted by Sumair Abro. During the interview, Salvestrini made the following point:

Content for your business is one of the best ways to drive organic traffic. It’s your secret salesperson because it’s out there working for you 24/7. And it’s evergreen, so not only is it working…day in and day out…it’s available years down the road.

Rhonda Salvestrini
By Luke Rauscher – James Bond (Daniel Craig) figure at Madame Tussauds London, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=86705881

Excellent point. In my 17 years of online writing, I’m consistently surprised when someone contacts me about something that I wrote years ago. The Internet, for better or worse, never forgets.

So if you’re reading this quote in 2029, and the quote inspires you, let Rhonda know.

And if you’re reading this in 2020 or 2021 and are looking for a writing coach to give your enterprise a voice, Rhonda is available to assist you.

(If you’d prefer to outsource the writing rather than doing it yourself, Bredemarket can help.)

Finally, if you want to hear the rest of the conversation between Salvestrini and Abro, here it is. Both the interviewee and the interviewer share many other insights on content creation.

And yes, Rhonda, this blog post has far fewer than 3,000 words, which kinda sorta limits its repurposing.

Or maybe not.

What type of content? As Nathan Ellering notes, you have choices.

There is one similarity between Bredemarket’s clients (and potential clients) and Bredemarket itself.

  • My clients and potential clients need to generate content to increase the visibility of their firms.
  • I need to generate content to increase the visibility of Bredemarket.

Once a content creator has determined its strategy, the creator then needs to decide upon the type of content to execute that strategy. While the answer is sometimes blindingly obvious, sometimes the content creator ends up staring at the wall, wondering what to do next.

Today I found a way to jump-start that thinking process, when I ran across Nathan Ellering’s article entitled “105 Types of Content to Fill Up Your Editorial Calendar.”

Yes, 105 types. Even Buzzfeed couldn’t handle a listicle that long.

https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/listicle – Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-SA 3.0)

But if you don’t have the time to read all 105 of Ellering’s suggestions (I confess I haven’t read them all myself), how about just looking at one of the 105 types? For purposes of this post, I decided to choose one at random by selecting a number between 1 and 105. Thinking of ketchup, I figured I’d see what Ellering’s type 57 was.

It turns out it was “News Releases and Pitches,” with the goal of using the news release “to get coverage in influential publications.” I’ve actually pitched my freelancing experience and been quoted in an article, and now may be one of the best-known freelancers in Austria.

Or possibly not.

But I’m sure that there are a ton of the 105 types of content that I haven’t created. At present I have no use for type 10, for example. But I plan to review Ellering’s article the next time that I’m stuck for ideas.

And perhaps you’ll find it helpful yourself.

(For those following along at home, this post itself is type 11, where the “product” is Ellering’s post itself.)

You go back, Jack, do it again

Creating content can sometimes be hard.

Repurposing content, however, is usually easier.

Your basic message has already been created, and the only additional effort that is required is formatting. For example, if you decide to turn a textual list post into an infographic, the primary task would be the graphic formatting. The content is already there.

Why repurpose content?

To reach audiences that you didn’t reach with your original content, and thus amplify your message. (There’s data behind this.)

Let me provide an example.

Repurposing example

While researching a potential client, I found an informational webinar that the client was promoting. Without giving anything away, let me just say that the webinar was outstanding, and that the primary speaker effectively addressed many of the questions and concerns about the client’s offering.

But all of this information was locked into a webinar. A one-hour plus webinar. Now I don’t know about you, but I’m not going to take an hour out of my day to listen to a webinar unless the speakers or the topics are REALLY important to me.

The client realized this barrier, and has worked (and continues to work) on repurposing the main themes that the primary speaker addressed in the webinar. The content is now available in formats that don’t require you to sit and listen to something for a good chunk of your working day. You can now consume the information in much less time, and in a format that is more attuned to your needs of the moment.

Repurpose…or don’t

Now before I address the question of who can help you repurpose your existing content in textual form (you already know how THAT question will be answered), take a moment and start to think about some content that you may want to repurpose.

And perhaps you don’t want to pursue the all-out repurpose route. Perhaps you just want to reshare a link on another platform. For example, I usually reshare the links to my Bredemarket posts on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.

But sometimes I actually go ahead and repurpose the content. Some of the informational brochures on my website are repurposed blog posts. The Facebook ad that I recently ran was a shortened version of a brochure that started as a blog post. (In retrospect, I didn’t shorten it enough.)

Let me go off on one little tangent

A few of you may have seen the title of this post, and now you have a particular song running through your head.

Well, you have the wrong song in your head.

You see, Steely Dan’s song has been covered by a number of artists, including Waylon Jennings.

Waylon Jennings promotional picture for RCA, circa 1974. By Waylon_Jennings_RCA.jpg: RCA Records derivative work: GDuwenTell me! – This file was derived from:  Waylon Jennings RCA.jpg:, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=17091525

And Waylon’s version is outstanding, and is just as good as his covers of “Gold Dust Woman” and “MacArthur Park.” That growl on “ROUND and round” really gets me, along with the instrumental break.

OK, back on topic

By the way, that was an example of repurposing. If you’re not going to invest three-plus minutes of your time to click on the link and listen to the YouTube recording of the song, at least you know that the song contains a classic Waylon Jennings growl. The critical information has been imparted in your preferred medium.

But you’re not looking for someone to textually describe your songs. Well, maybe you are. But it’s much more likely that you’re looking for someone to convey critical marketing messages via text of short or medium length. Or, for that matter, long length.

If this post has inspired you to have Bredemarket help you repurpose your existing content in textual form:

By the way, while writing this post, I was inspired to pursue a repurposing project of my own, distinctly different from the repurposing that I mentioned earlier in this post. I’m not ready to announce anything yet, but stay tuned for (potentially) an announcement.

If your marketing channels lack content, your potential customers may not know that you exist

[Update, January 27, 2021: a July 2020 study from Demand Gen Report explains WHY up-to-date content is important. I addressed that study in this post.]

One of Bredemarket’s most popular services is the Short Writing Service. It can help small (or large) businesses solve the content problem.

You know what the content problem is. Your business has established one or more marketing channels: a website, blog, email list, Google My Business site, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Tumblr, Twitter…or many others.

But the marketing channels are useless IF THEY HAVE NO CONTENT.

Or old content.

Or poorly-written content.

Maybe the information on the marketing channel is six months old, or a year old, or nine years old. (Trust me, this happens.) Or maybe there’s content on one marketing channel, but it’s never cross-posted to the other marketing channels for your business.

What are the ramifications of this? If your channels lack content, your potential customers may forget about you. And that’s NOT good for business.

I’ll use myself as a BAD example. In addition to my business blogs at Bredemarket (https://bredemarket.com/blog/) and JEBredCal (https://jebredcal.wordpress.com/blog/), I maintain several personal blogs. One of those personal blogs is Empoprise-NTN (https://empoprise-ntn.blogspot.com/), and that blog is obviously the ugly stepchild of the bunch. Between 2016 and 2019 I authored exactly ZERO posts on that blog. So if someone is looking for authoritative commentary on NTN Buzztime games, they’re obviously NOT going to look to me.

The obvious solution to the content problem is to CREATE CONTENT. Some people have no problem creating content, but others may need some help. They may not have the time (https://bredemarket.com/2020/09/25/when-you-dont-have-the-time-to-craft-your-own-text/), or they may need some help in selecting the right words to say.

Bredemarket can help you solve the content problem, one post at a time. The Bredemarket 400 Short Writing Service (https://bredemarket.com/bredemarket-400-short-writing-service/) uses a collaborative process, in which you and Bredemarket agree on a topic, Bredemarket provides a draft of the text, and the text goes through two review cycles. At the end of the process, you have the text, you own the text (this is a “work for hire”), and you can post the text on your blog or Facebook or wherever you please. Your content problem is solved! And if the post includes a call for action, your potential customers can ACT, potentially providing you with new business.

Speaking of a call for action…

If you would like to talk to Bredemarket about ways to solve your business’ content problem, contact me!

Bredemarket 400 Short Writing Service

(new text of approximately 400 to 600 words)