By @TheMarkDalton

Content marketing is not instant, it takes time, a lot of time. Content is the hot buzzword at the moment and any good marketer knows this and is creating content at scale. However, we also know that creating content is a marathon, not a sprint and a lot of people expect overnight success.

How much time is it going to take? Lets start with this, it will take more than weeks. It will take months of hard work and great quality content before you start to see results. So many of you think you are going to be churning out content and people will flock to your page that you will become internet famous overnight. Not going to happen.

Playing the long game.

You need to be thinking of the long game. You are going to start to find that you might have to work harder than before to reach people because we are in a world now where attention is limited to certain places. People use ad blockers, a lot of people use ad blockers! We don’t look at TV commercials because we either change to another channel while the commercial is on or bury our heads in our phones, so while the commercial plays on the TV we watch with somewhat of a passive interest or no interest at all.

Marketers have to get smart, this is why storytelling through Instagram and Snapchat has come into play and why it will be important with Twitter moments. This is why visual content has come into play, online video has come into play and podcasts have come into play.

You can’t jam things down the consumers throat and expect them to bite, now you need to create quality content that has value. Give them something, ask for nothing in return.

Why content marketing?

Content marketing works, simple as that. Why does it work? Because it gives the consumer value and information without asking for anything in return. Consumers don’t want to interact with invasive, obnoxious ads on the screen that are of a poor quality and you struggle to close. That is not providing them value, that is taking from them in both time and attention which they don’t want.

Content also helps consumers develop a trust and relationship with your brand, which in turn will help grow your business. Content marketing is growing because it works, if it didn’t work we wouldn’t have to bother putting all our time and effort into creating content.

But as I keep mentioning, it takes time and if you give up on it because you were too impatient to stick with it without seeing results then you are never going to see the success it can bring.

The numbers grow over time but you have to work hard at growing it and stick with it. So what can you do and what should you be doing to help your awesome content rank? How can you increase visibility and exposure as soon as possible?

Publish frequently

Some of you may have a large following behind you online, if you do then this may make the whole process easier. However you need to start by posting often in the beginning. When I started my old blog, 60 Second Social I was posting regularly on all kinds of new topics.

This is because you will give Google more pages and content to index and it also starts to establish your presence. A few weeks in and people will start getting the impression that you are here to stick around and are not going anywhere so they may start becoming more invested in your content if they know you are in it for the long haul.

Frequent posting is good at the start when you are getting off the ground and then once you are up and running you can look at dialling it back to something more comfortable but don’t be afraid to go in hard from the start.

Repurpose and repost old content

If you are creating content which has true value and is of great quality then much of it will probably fall into the category of evergreen content. Don’t write off evergreen content, keep it and re-share it again at a later stage. People who missed it the first time may catch it the second, third, fourth time ect.

Long form and in-depth content more often than not can be used again, it is up to you how you want to save and re-share that content. Personally I save my content to Pinterest boards which are organised by month and year, then I simply dive in, pick a piece of content and throw it back out there to my social media channels.

Knowing what is important – quality or quantity?

Both are important to be honest. You need to have quantity so people know you are still around and you haven’t just vanished off the face of the Earth. However if content is of poor quality then it won’t matter how often you post, nobody will read it.

There is a reason why I only published one piece of content a day up until recently and there is a reason why I won’t be going above two pieces of content when it is just me doing it. The reason is because the content is of a high quality which provides value and as a result it takes time to put together and get out there online. The reason why I only post two pieces of blog content per day is because the quality is a high standard.

The reason why I have dialled back to one post per day again is because I found that two per day was compromising the quality with how busy I am at the moment and that is not good for me and not good for you.

Optimise your content for wherever you are posting to

Optimise your content for SEO (I do this using Yoast on WordPress for my personal blog) and also optimise for social media channels you are posting to. Every piece of content you post should have some form of visual. You can use Twitter cards or attach an optimised image.

I prefer to create an image in Canva optimised for the social network of choice and attach it to the content. Images display different ways on each platform so make sure you optimise them so that your content stands out for the right reasons and looks the best.

Both strategies will have an effect so it is simply which one you prefer.

Be patient

I keep coming back to this but the point can’t be emphasised enough. There are too few overnight sensations for you to be betting all your chips on being one of them. Work hard and keep grinding it out each day, the results will start to come slowly but they will come.

It can take months to a year + to see the results you want, this is normal but if you create awesome content that is optimised well and you keep pumping it out , even if nobody is watching then you will have success.

Once you crack it then you will see great results over a long term period, the rewards are there when you go for it. So don’t get down about the struggle and keep pushing for the next height.

Mark is the founder and CEO of Mark Dalton Media and helps businesses with their content and digital strategies. Follow him on Instagram or Twitter for more.

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