Imagine giving the latest smartphone with the most sophisticated features to a person who only needs to make phone calls. He may not even bother to send texts.The phone maker did a great job creating a product to impress the public, but the phone never reached the right customer. If the smartphone was awarded to a gadget enthusiast instead, he or she would use the phone to its maximum potential. The high-resolution camera, brand, and specifications all play into the gadget enthusiast’s purchase decision. So how do you target the enthusiast and not the Nokia user?
This scenario pretty much sums up media distribution. As the world grows more dependent on content marketing, companies increasingly focus on how their content represents them. Good content is wasted if it goes unnoticed, or worse, noticed by the wrong people.
“Content is king, but distribution is queen,” said Jonathan Perelman, VP of Agency Strategy and Industry Development at Buzzfeed. He explained that people who check their phones before going to bed and just after waking up usually check their emails and social media instead of Googling things. This is just one thing you should consider when planning how you get your message across on certain platforms. He made it clear that distribution on these platforms needs to be taken as seriously as the content itself. People will not go looking for your content if it does not intersect with their normal routines.
Developing the strategy for content distribution is done largely with the following three steps:
1. Identify the purpose and audience
Is the content created to generate new leads? To raise brand awareness? To promote new ideas? Do you want to gain a huge number of sign-ups or followers? Or do you simply want to share posts? Is the audience made up of college students? Or are they professionals?
Define the purpose of your content and who your potential audience is so you can decide what distribution strategy works best.
2. Choose which channels to use
Content distribution is conducted through a variety of channels that can be applied to different targets and circumstances. Some people access certain media more frequently than others. You may also be limited to a certain budget, existing brand image, social relationships, resources, and other factors that require consideration. A few primary types of channels to distribute your content are:
- Owned: Your own media and accounts, such as blogs, social media accounts, websites, email newsletters, etc. These tools are often free, guarantee placement, and allow you to control the message. Owned channels make up the basic tools of content distribution, and are also the simplest ones to manage.
- Earned: Promotional efforts and outreach on platforms not owned by you, such as public relations, product reviews, social media groups, etc.
- Paid: Various types of advertising, including social media ads, sponsored content, paid influencers, pay per click, etc. These channels are highly targeted, offer elevated exposure, and guarantee placement.
3. Put them together
Now that you are clear about your purpose, your audience, and the distribution channels available, stitch them together. Which of the channels offer the most exposure to your audience? Develop a strategy based on the current activity in the channel that you plan to use.
E-commerce businesses spend a great deal of resources on maximizing marketing strategies via media distribution. Analyzing trends in social media (which dominates the other distribution alternatives) will tell you what your audience and potential customers are buzzing about, thus giving you the advantage of developing a tailored approach.
Most of the options in all three types of media distribution channels include the use of social media. According to We Are Social, as of January 2016, the growth in the number of active social media users around the world increased by 10 percent from a year earlier.
31 percent of the total population now uses some form of social media. The data shows that social media has become a world where you can find and be found by people. You need only decide by whom you want to be found and how you want your company to be perceived. When you choose the right distribution channels to ‘attack’ the right segment with killer content, you can spread the word, grab new prospects, and engage with your customers, clients, and shareholders.
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