The Stand-Alone Strategy
Having the best content means nothing without proper distribution.
I love the look on people’s faces when I suggest that they give away their best stuff for free.
It goes against everything they’ve been taught in business.
But trust me, the give-to-get approach works.
Gone are the days when simply sharing a post with a link would suffice. Content marketing has changed.
In this edition, I share how you can stay top-of-mind with a straightforward content strategy that anyone can use.
You’ll learn how to boost your followers and sales with budget-friendly content marketing.
It’s a 2-minute watch and a 5-minute read.
When I started my YouTube channel, I already had around 60k followers on LinkedIn.
I figured a good percentage of that audience would migrate over when I asked them.
“I’ve got a new YouTube channel - click the link and smash that subscribe button”
But they didn’t.
I’d made a common mistake, one I see lots of businesses still making on their socials.
“If you build it, they will come”
Well, no, actually.
“It’s harder than ever to get audiences to click that call-to-action” - Amanda Natividad
And that’s for two main reasons:
People are lazy - we don’t want to click on links that take us away from our current platform.
Algorithms reward platform-native content - they don’t promote content that pushes users away from their own platform.
This is the best write-up I’ve read on the topic - zero-click content
In it, Amanda explains that Google is continually updating the Search Engine Results Page (SERP) so that users don’t even need to click on a result in order to satisfy their query.
Information is displayed directly on the search engine results page, so the user does not need to visit the source website.
You’ll notice this with content like
And direct answers to simple questions:
You get all the info you need without having to click through to a website.
The challenge for marketers and business owners has only escalated with the rise of social platforms that either penalize or outright ban the use of links.
This makes it even more difficult to reach and engage with audiences
If you’re only publishing your best content (video, images, blogs, and guides) on your own website or behind a paywall, it’s going to go unnoticed.
Make stuff for the platform you’re on. Native text posts, videos, and images.
We call it our stand-alone strategy.
Here’s how not to do it:
I’ve picked a random tile company on LinkedIn. But loads do it.
Now, the idea behind this post is solid. Educational content linked to topics their ideal client would be interested in. We know that strategy works.
But here’s the f*ck up.
They’ve gone to all that effort of creating a collection of guides (23 in total), but only used the info on their website.
“For more information visit our official website”
2 Likes, and we know that link isn’t getting clicked anytime soon.
Instead, they should have shared the “how to” demonstration natively.
People are often worried about giving away the crown jewels, but content marketing has changed.
You’ve got to give away the good stuff up front.
The Tile Shop “how to” could easily be shared as an image carousel on LinkedIn, a 60-second video on TikTok, or a short thread on Twitter.
People are busy. They don’t have time to click on your link to read more.
The best content doesn’t win. Success is down to distribution.
“Ok, this sounds right, but I haven’t got time, I’ve got a job to do Mike”
I get it. But do what I do.
Block out time to make long-form content. It could be educational or entertaining. It doesn’t matter as long as it’s value driven.
Not sure where to start? Write down the questions you get asked by clients every week.
Start by answering those. Write them down or record yourself answering the questions.
Then repurpose the long-form content into short-form pieces suitable for whichever platform you do best on.
Remember. It’s better to establish yourself on one platform first before migrating to others.
That said, if you’re clever, it’s not too difficult to produce lots of different content with a system.
In our tiling example, I would create a long “how to” video to be shared on YouTube and native on any platforms that support video.
I’d also chop it up into a shorter 60-second version for TikTok, YouTube Shorts, and Reels.
Then I’d take the transcript and turn it into a short bullet point post for LinkedIn and Facebook.
I’d then recycle that content.
Don’t worry about sharing something you’ve already posted. There are always new followers who haven’t seen it, and chances are they won’t remember it if they have.
Measuring the success of a content marketing strategy can be challenging as it's not as straightforward as tracking SEO clicks or web page visits.
However, the benefits are unmistakable. The more engagement, trust, and followers you build on social platforms, the more you'll elevate your brand and increase your chances of success.
This effect is commonly known as 'brand lift.'
Brand lift refers to a positive shift in how prospective customers perceive your brand, although it may not immediately translate into sales. Brand lift is typically measured via survey, using a variety of metrics, including brand awareness, brand perception, intent to buy
More simply, you’ll stay “top of mind” and the audience will remember you when they’re ready to buy.
If your profile is optimised and your landing page ready to convert (full article VAMO here) you’ll be ready for them when they do, eventually, click.
Play to the platform algorithms with native content.
Invest time in platforms that offer improved organic engagement (e.g. YouTube shorts right now).
The best content doesn’t win, it’s a game of distribution.
Bulk record long-form content and repurpose it as shorter pieces to save time.
Recycle old content shamelessly.
That’s it for this week.
As always, I’m more than happy to answer any questions about the newsletter over in the private VAMO slack community.
Leave me a comment and I’ll get back to you.
If you’ve not already, don’t forget to subscribe to our paid community.
You’ll get all of these:
⚡1 x email per week that covers sales/marketing/grow your following with a coaching video.
⚡Access to the private Slack community
⚡Early access to watch the VAMO Podcast (1 week early)
⚡Submit questions to be answered on the VAMO Podcast by Mike, Dan and the guests
⚡Early access and discount to training sessions
For £150 for the year, it’s a real no-brainer 🧠