I’m a BIG fan of using leverage in a business.
Content marketing online IS leverage, period. But some businesses see the preparation and delivery of that content as an expense.
WRONG. It’s an investment.
Personally, my blog, social media accounts, and various pieces of content that someone could download have more than leveraged the time I’ve put into developing them.
I’m not great at SEO either.
But, as an example, I view my Twitter account as an asset in and of itself… not one I own (because Twitter owns it), but one I “rent” with the time I make available for it. I post content on Twitter, someone finds it (short “blog” posts), and visits my website as a result.
Once they visit my website, there are a percentage that contact me, follow me on Twitter, or in rare cases… inquire about a potential project.
Notice I haven’t YET focused on money in this exchange, because I know I have something much more valuable, their attention… and here is where this particular “asset” pays off (Twitter in combination with my blog etc…)…
When I’m available to work on a project, I simply use Twitter, say I’m available, and get inquiries… then pick from those inquiries. And, Twitter is only one example of content that accomplishes this for me.
I also use Google + in a similar fashion.
I use my blog, where my blog posts, which are MY assets, have been found on Twitter, Google +, or simply found online… and the above happens again.
BUT… this goes MUCH farther than that…
Through this whole process, and THIS is where I think companies miss the boat BIG time, besides attention, I also have something you can’t “track” or “profit from”… relationships with people.
People like David Meerman Scott.
Now, with David, it’s not a project based relationship of course, although there may be a time when David refers someone who might be in need of a marketing copywriter to me in the future… but ours is a relationship where when I send an email he reads it.
I value that. I have David’s attention. We have a relationship.
But aside from that, I have valuable relationships with other folks for other reasons, I can book a room in certain hotels for instance, FREE, because of relationships I have developed. I can better learn my business from free books from authors, I can form partnerships with people at will etc…
And those you can track, but I just chalk it up as “worth the effort in building my content assets.”
So quit the “ROI” bullshit… and focus on the “I” part. If your content is worth talking about, you’ll get return on it.