In this episode of the PR series, I interview Erika Heald on all things content creation and digital marketing. Today, managing your digital marketing can become frustrating and overwhelming. When it comes to content, it's easy to get wrapped up in the idea you’re creating content for the sake of it, but it is crucial to focus on the goals. The goal of today’s episode is to provide you with practical tips and tricks for navigating the world of content strategy that will build your confidence and your business growth. 

Some top tips … 

Thought leadership has become a must-include component of most brands' PR and brand-building efforts. It is so easy to post content for the sake of posting but focus on posting content that is authentic and starts conversations within your online community.  

Staying organized is the best way to reduce stress when planning your content. Utilize tools such as editorial calendars, content templates, and AI to maximize your efficiency and to ensure no aspect of your content strategy or plan is overlooked; even the smallest details matter! 

Make sure your content strategies are rooted in solid goals and objectives. Whether creating content for your next post or trying to determine the channel that best fits you, remember that your goals and objectives are the ultimate destinations for success among your audience and your strategy. 

Going viral should not be your goal! Going viral is a vanity objective, not a business objective, and it will not add monetary value to your brand. Remember, you are trying to share your message with a specific audience, not a giant one.

Commit to avoiding random acts of content marketing. Create useful content that your audience will enjoy consuming; don’t create something to fill your editorial calendar, create content you would spend time engaging with if you didn’t work for your company. 

This episode at glance … 

>>  (2:45-4:13) Thought leadership has become a must-include component of most brands' PR and brand-building efforts. But what exactly IS thought leadership? Thought leadership is conveyed by a person who is unafraid to share their opinions, even the unpopular ones. Thought leaders make a huge difference in your content, stand out from the crowd and truly connect with your audience. 

>>(4:16-5:30) Find different people to be thought leaders for your content. Utilizing various expertise will ensure you can meet all of your content strategy needs and allow your audience to connect with your brand more uniquely and authentically. 

>>(5:40-8:07) Content pillars are essential to marketing on every channel because they help you define what you want to talk about and what you want to be known for. You don’t always need to rely on keywords for pillars; focus on what drives a true connection with your audience. 

>>(8:10-8:59) Content marketing is all about getting to know your audience. Similar to servant leadership, you’re trying to be helpful. Rather than trying to sell your content you’re trying to be relentlessly helpful with your content. 

>>(9:33-13:33) How do I know my content drives business growth? Take a look at Gini Dietrich’s ‘PESO Model’. This model will help you understand that all content is interconnected, and you can create content that works best for your audience, messages, and objectives. 

>>(13:42-17:57) Editorial calendars help you organize your ideas, objectives, and pillars. This calendar is a flexible way to help you determine what you want to do and when you want to do it; it will also keep you accountable for committing to a specific time and activity. 

>>(18:11-21:30) A common mistake in creating growth-focused content strategies is focusing too much on what your competitors do. If you only focus on sharing your version of what your competitors share, you won’t stand out as a unique voice in your space. 

>>(21:40-24:55) The best way to gain momentum on a small budget is to make sure you’re creating and designing content with all the repurposing options in mind. Utilizing tools such as, Grammarly, Tailwind, and Canva are great AI tools for creating content and copy. 

>> (25:40-33:51) Erika’s Twitter chat and Linkedin live were ultimately inspired by the questions, ‘How can we have a great conversation with an expert while also allowing our community to give their input, share opinions, and ask questions?’ It is a great way to drive brand recognition, engage the audience, and receive helpful feedback.

>>(31:49-31:24) When developing a plan and determining the right channels for your brand, focus on the places where you have a solid audience to engage with. Try a new form of content per quarter and figure out what you’re comfortable with. Be realistic with your expectations and try things that are manageable for you. 

>> (33:55-36:26) While going viral seems exciting, that should never be the main goal of your post. Going viral is a vanity objective, not a business objective. Viral content does not serve your brand because it is a broad approach, not one that is focused around your target market. You aren’t trying to reach a vast audience, you’re trying to reach a specific audience. 

>>(36:56-42:27) When pursuing paid speaking opportunities, start by defining your thought leadership strategy and what you really want to be known for, knowing you can offer something unique to the conversation. Start with pieces that are in your comfort zone and pursue opportunities where you know someone involved in selecting the speakers or where you can get an intro. Taking advantage of low-hanging fruit is a great place to start. 

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Links Mentioned in Today's Episode





Ways to reach Erika Heald & Christie Bilbrey

Twitter: @sferika  

Erika’s free download: Tools and Templates to Accelerate Your Work

Erika’s free download: How to Build a Thought Leadership Platform

Erika’s free download: How to share company content in an authentic and meaningful way  



Download my free guide: Create Your Buyer Persona

Download my free guide: 10 Tips to Grow Your Business as a Podcast Guest

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