An Experiment That Shows How Content Marketing Works

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Jerry Silfwer Digital Strategist, Mad Science Digital

Posted on March 20th 2014

An Experiment That Shows How Content Marketing Works

Screen Shot 2014 03 19 at 16.21.28 300x176With a little twist, I wanted to demonstrate how content marketing works — in particular for smaller companies. And how it could work for your business.

This little experiment of mine has yielded some specific results and I thought it would be fun and interesting to share them with you.

Curious? Let’s get down to it:

 

The Idea: A Blogger Outreach Focus

About 6 months ago I decided to practise some focus here on the blog. I’m passionate about most things related to digital marketing, but I decided to bring a little more focus to blogger outreach specifically.

Why? Well, why not?

I hadn’t exactly written extensively about the topic in the past, but I had at least a couple of relevant posts published. So here’s what I did:

  • I wrote a couple of new posts specifically about blogger outreach during the course of a couple of months. Not excessively many, but a few.
  • I set up a simple Resource Page (Get Started With Blogger Outreach) where I collected all relevant posts, simply to connect them with each other and to show search engines that these posts belong together. I also linked the resource page from my universal sidebar to show that I care a little extra about this content.
  • If I had gone all-in on this, I should’ve also made sure to secure som influential inlinks and done some keyword research. But I didn’t. I was too lazy, ha!
  • I also started pushing a little extra for a specific technique, Honeymoon Outreach, sort of to stand out a little.

So, what happened?

The Outcome Of My Little Experiment

I did get a little more organic search engine traffic on blogger outreach-related queries, but nothing extravagant. If I had been serious about ranking better in search, I should’ve gone the extra mile with links, keyword research and formatting. But unfortunately, I didn’t do this.

But in spite of how small-scaled this experiment was, I still got some pretty remarkable results (yes, I kept track of them). This is the outcome from 6 months:

I got 3 invitations to do unpaid talks on blogger outreach. Compared to none before on this particular subject. I did a few and got a chance to get my message out there.

I got 4 invitations to to paid talks on blogger outreach. Compared to none before on this particular subject. I did three of them and managed to get my message across to some more companies.

I got 11 hot sales leads to execute blogger outreach — or help with a strategy for it. This is probably triple the leads I’d normally get for this particular service.

I got at least 5 incredible endorsements that I know of. “Who knows blogger outreach?” It’s impossible to know how often my name came up in these types of discussions, but some of them got through to me. Good stuff.

National television wanted to use me as an expert source in a news story related to blogger outreach. I actually declined because I didn’t like the premise of the story, but still. My name came up.

And 2 agencies got in touch for help to fine-tune their own blogger outreach service. It’s always tricky to establish partner relationships within the same industry, but I was still very happy about this.

Countless offers to host paid guest blog posts on the subject. No real good ones, unfortunately.

Also, 2 blogger outreach software companies got in touch to establish a relationship. Since I’m in the business myself, I value having direct contact with marketing softwares. It might just prove useful for clients down the line.

Pretty okay, right? Considering that we’re only talking about a couple of blog posts, some very weak SEO efforts on my part and a couple of speaking gigs where I promoted my cause a bit further.

I didn’t even use my mailing list to push for this experiment.

What Does This Say About Content Marketing?

Sure, 6 months might sound like a long time. But the outcomes listed above was something very tangible to me. So tangible in fact, I almost became a bit worried that my potential clients would forget that I’m really about digital marketing strategy!

But in any case, with very little effort, I was able to affect the very perception of myself as a brand. Of course, I had some credibility to draw from going into this experiment. And that helped, of course.

But the key point remains:

The secret behind getting through the noise via content marketing — FOCUS! <<< Click to tweet!

Make sure to try this at home, folks. Create a Content Calendar that focuses on THEMES with starts and stops — and stick to them. The real power of content marketing isn’t just about what you say, it’s also about having the discipline to avoid covering too many topics at the time.

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Jerry Silfwer

Digital Strategist, Mad Science Digital

Swedish social media blogger based in Stockholm and New York. CEO of strategy firm Mad Science Digital and Advisory Board for social media agency Whispr Group. Founder of PR of Sweden, the no. 1 online community for communication professionals in the Nordics. Nominated twice for most influential PR pro in Sweden by Cision.

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