Making any change happen in your business takes more than good intentions. Getting up and running with content marketing is no different. So how do you get into action?
There’s a lot to learn and do. If you’re determined to create content that’s going to be valuable to your customers and help you win more of the right work, you’ll need space in your schedule (and in your head) for that learning to happen.
So how do you do it? Well, you have a lot of choices.
What’s right for you will depend on the type of learner you are, where you are in the process, and the time and budget you have to devote to it right now.
Everything you ever wanted to know about content marketing is out there on the internet already. There have probably been more words about published about it in the last hour than you’d have time to read in a month. But if you’re a patient, savvy reader and have the time, you could teach yourself for free, just using the wealth of no-cost tools and advice.
You’ll find oodles of free resources and help on this website (here’s a good place to start your search), and check out the Content Marketing Institute – they’ve got it covered. If you’re a B2B content marketer you might like Velocity Partner’s irreverent content too.
DIY-er who likes a trusted guide
Using the internet as your key source of information for a new subject can be a hit and miss affair. The good stuff is there, but finding it can be like picking through the world’s biggest and best jumble sale – jewels to be found but they’re hiding under a lot of crap!
A good book that leads you through a subject step by step can be an invaluable time saver and a great way to get orientated. Ours is called Valuable Content Marketing and also try Epic Content Marketing by Joe Pulizzi, Inbound Marketing, Dharmesh Shah and Brian Halligan, and that Daddy of them all – The New Rules of Marketing and PR by David Meerman Scott.
Reading, whether online or in a book, will only get you so far. It’s listening, seeing and doing that sparks action for you.
Face to face with other people, talking it through, working through exercises that put learning in context – these are the conditions that move learning on for you faster and further than straight words on a page.
Face-to-face workshops can serve as shots of adrenalin and inspiration to fire your content marketing change. We run a programme of content marketing workshops here in Bristol, and can create bespoke in-house workshops for businesses. Search Eventbrite for workshops near you.
Time-poor, web-savvy solo learner
Online learning is big, and there are courses on the web to teach you just about anything. From free YouTube tutorials to intensive web-based programmes, if you want to learn it, there will be someone happy to teach you it online.
If you’re busy starting up a business, or caught up in the day-to-day running of one, getting skilled up in your spare time can be a great option.
Our first online course teaches you how to use social media for business, and we have more in the pipeline. The Content Marketing Institute runs online content marketing courses. So does Econsultancy. And if what you really want to improve is your writing then Henneke Duistermaat’s online courses are awesome.
Learn best in a group
Put a good group together and the power of learning multiplies. You don’t just learn by listening to a teacher, but you also learn by sharing experiences, talking it through, testing ideas, trying things out.
The group dynamic can spur you on to be more creative and more productive – and it can be a lot more fun than struggling through a course alone. When it comes to putting content marketing into action a group holds you to account – a sure fire way of making you keep your promises.
We run small group content marketing programmes in a pub – yes, Pub School! Group therapy for the content challenged – with a happy band of savvy business owners like you.
Lots of ways to learn, and if you’re determined to get to grips with content marketing then one of them will be right for you.
Buy a book, book a workshop, come to Pub School – think about how you learn best and then get something in your diary that will kick you into action.