Maximise outreach potential beyond links with integrated campaigns

Chris Scott

Imagine if Google announced that links were no longer an SEO ranking factor and therefore wouldn’t carry any form of value. How would this impact your strategy?

A knee jerk response might be to downgrade content as a priority. But once you’ve taken off your SEO goggles, you’ll likely ask yourself what other uses content has beyond link building?

Content that reaches, engages and converts your audience directly as well as excites journalists enough to cover it across their audience-relevant publication is the sweet spot. But if we solely focus on one over the other, we’re doing brands a disservice. To maximise the outreach potential of your campaign, both publication and audience outreach should be baked into your promotional strategy.

The answer? Integrated campaigns.

Content consultant Chris Scott explores how powerful these can be.

What is an integrated campaign?

An integrated campaign uses multiple online channels and added techniques to hit the trifecta of link building, audience engagement and maximised reach in one fell swoop.

Campaign objectives compared

To ensure each factor reaches its full potential, you can distribute integrated campaign content via online media channels in three ways: owned, earned and paid.

Integrated content distribution

Owned

This is the act of promoting content via channels that already belong to you such as:

While promoting content across owned channels can be effective, it won’t allow you to reach a new audience unless your existing base shares it.

Earned

To build an owned audience, you must first earn it. Earned methods include:

Paid

Paid distribution involves paying a media owner – be it a publisher, social network or influencer – to distribute your content to their owned audience. Payment takes many forms, but it will usually be a Cost Per Click (CPC) model, whereby the advertiser is only charged when a user engages with your content. Done right, paid distribution can be immensely effective. Here are some methods:

Combination is king

Hopefully, the above has proven that all your eggs shouldn’t be in one basket when it comes to running content marketing campaigns. To really ‘win’ at creating content, the goal should be to engage and convert your audience alongside building links. By combining your distribution channels, you can make your content work even harder. Here are examples of how that can look:

How to overcome potential barriers

Working for a brand or agency, the same barriers involved in activating an integrated content promotion strategy apply – particularly if you work within the SEO team.

Ultimately, you’ve been employed to enhance organic performance. But not all of these promotion techniques enhance organic performance. To this we argue: why wouldn’t you want to invest in activity that is going to help you reach the overarching objective?

Well, the problem lies in the objective.

The key is working with budget holders to educate them around how content is being sold short when it’s being created purely for only one job. Map KPIs to each campaign and channel that go beyond organic performance, setting the remit to reach, engage and convert your audience. The end result is a business case that’s hard to argue with.

Finally, when developing content campaigns, ensure you’re working with other wider channel teams from the outset to ensure the smooth integration of additional distribution methods.

Key takeaways

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