Content Marketing: Quality vs Quantity for Your Audience

In the past, associations often had a stated goal of producing a lot of content, but now it’s proven that members don’t see much of it. A recent report from PAN Communications [registration] finds that consumers engage with only one to five pieces of branded content per month…but many organizations produce 16 or more pieces per month. What is an association for?

According to Hilary Marsh, Content Company founder and digital strategist focused on nonprofits and nonprofits, there’s a risk in flooding your content feeds with too much information.

“The more we send, the more we create, the fewer individual things people can consume,” she said. “It’s a bit like Marie Kondo’s approach to content. So when there’s too much, you can’t even absorb what there is. You cannot absorb it. You can’t remember it and you certainly can’t use it.

And that’s just from the end user’s perspective. There is also a cost to your team: if you create too much content, your team can be overwhelmed and not meet your goals. Marsh offered some tips for balancing content production with your real needs.

Focus on relevance, not metrics

While your instinct might be to maximize traffic for reach and advertising metrics, Marsh discourages that mindset, saying the goal should be to create content with maximum relevance to the target audience.

“We want people to come to our website because they need what we have,” she said. “It’s not necessarily more people. It could be the same people but with better actions. We must therefore set our objectives well and coordinate marketing efforts with the general work of the organization.

Marsh added that it’s important to think about the audience you’re trying to reach and how they fit into your content, and then set expectations accordingly.

“They won’t necessarily remember what you posted last week,” she said.

You might end up posting less but promoting more, to meet the needs of your audience.

Translating research into content marketing

Marsh describes associations as “content machines” that already produce many types of content, which positions them perfectly to generate useful content marketing.

In particular, research produced by associations can be of great value for expert voices, but this information needs to be translated for a wider audience. Marsh said organizations can break down this richer, expert-focused content into formats well suited to content marketing, such as snackable content.

She said good content marketing would leverage other departments in the organization, which would translate into webinars, articles, and many other content formats.

“I truly believe that if you have a good content strategy, the content you create comes from the programs, products, and services that your organization produces,” Marsh said. “And it’s easier to market that without creating other marketing content.”

Build a content schedule, but not too rigidly

Content calendars are important because they provide ways for departments within the organization to participate in what you produce, Marsh said. But she cautioned against letting a schedule lock you into creating only one type of content for a certain period of time.

Ideally, she says, “the calendar isn’t trying to drive the association, but the association as a whole drives the calendar.”

A good point of comparison for this is how magazines can have themed issues, but these themes are not universal throughout the magazine. If a good piece of news content goes off the schedule, don’t be afraid to build it out of turn.

Understand audience behavior

One of the keys to producing better content is making sure it matches the needs of the audience. Better targeted content produces better results, regardless of format.

Marsh points out the different ways certain types of professionals tend to use their content. Real estate agents might be interested in content for Facebook that they can share on their own pages as promotional material, for example. But those who work in legal fields cannot use Facebook at all to share legal information. This understanding of your audience can inform the content you create.

“What’s going to work in any given association depends on who its members are, why their members are there in the world of different channels, and then how those things play out in the relationship members have with that association,” he said. she declared.

(PeopleImages/E+/Getty Images Plus)