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ServiceScape Incorporated
ServiceScape Incorporated

10 Easy Content Marketing Ideas to Grow Your Business Online

Tonya Thompson

Published on
Last Modified on

You've gone through all the legal hoops to get your business off the ground and running. Permits, employer identification number, business accounts and business credit cards—now it's time to, well, get down to business!

A lot of fledgling companies go through the startup process, only to find themselves overwhelmed on the other side by how to market their services or brand to attract customers. As a result, content strategy gets pushed to the back burner, even though it's one of the most powerful drivers for business growth and marketing. Without an Internet presence, most businesses lose potential customers, simply because people are looking online when they seek out services. It's just the easiest way to do it, and online reviews are a powerful motivator for purchasing behavior.

Without an Internet presence, most businesses lose potential customers.
Without an Internet presence, most businesses lose potential customers, simply because people are looking online when they seek out services. Photo by NordWood Themes on Unsplash.

Easy content ideas

So, maybe you don't have enough internal resources to curate, write and publish content on a daily basis. A lot of businesses hire this task out, and there are several online freelance marketplaces that offer access to writers and content curators at reasonable prices. But if your business is in its infancy stages and you don't have the funds to do this, here are a few ideas that are easy to do in-house, with minimal time and effort, that will build your social media presence and populate your blog with engaging, sharable content.

1. Ask for customer submissions

If you offer a service or a product, you're likely to have several past customers who will be more than happy to submit their personal experiences or reviews. For example, you could ask for photos of your present and past customers enjoying whatever service or product you offer them, and then share those photos on your blog or social media. In marketing circles, this is called "user-generated content" and is especially powerful in reaching out to potential new customers who follow your blog and social media feeds and are considering your product or service.

2. Inspire

With social media feeds full of bad news and political arguments, a lot of people prefer to keep their media consumption limited to what's positive and uplifting, and will actively seek out accounts or bloggers who provide it. So, finding examples of uplifting local stories to share (from local media) or encouraging quotes are always a great way to elicit more engagement on your business or organization's social media posts.

3. Make instructional videos

People like watching video on their social media feeds. It's engaging and any kind of content that's informative is always a good bet for attracting attention, likes and shares. You can use this to your advantage by creating instructional videos that help your audiences understand your product a little more, or even information in your industry that they would find valuable and useful that might not be related specifically to the product or service you offer.

4. Run contests offering giveaways

People love participating in a contest, especially if there's a reward of free products or services being offered. Use your blog and social media to spread the word about contests you're running and ask for user-generated content related to your business or product as contest entries. For example, if you run a swimming pool installation company, you could run a photo contest requesting your social media followers to submit photos of their family members enjoying time in the pool. All photos can be posted online over a period of weeks or months and one can be chosen as the winner of the contest, with a grand price of a pool installation service or product.

As a result, you'll have:

  • Engaging content to post on your blog and social media feed that is submitted to you, rather than you having to spend the time creating it.
  • Content that is sharable and therefore a great marketing opportunity for your business, especially if you make it a rule for entry that all participants share the photo on their own social media and tag your business in it.

5. Profile a customer

One powerful driver of return business is establishing relationships with your customers and getting to know them on a personal level. Offering a Q&A-type profile on your individual customers is a great way to do this while also populating your blog and social media with engaging, sharable content. Another benefit is when a customer sees themselves or their business profiled on your social media feed, they generally celebrate that acknowledgement by sharing it on their own social media and blog feeds. The result is a win-win for you, with extended reach of your branding efforts combined with easily created, sharable content for your own various marketing channels.

6. Write about a new hire

Your relationship with your current and potential customers is built on their perception of you, your employees, and your business ethics. One good way to nourish this relationship in your social media and blogging efforts is to spotlight your employees, especially new hires who have recently come on board. You can task the employee himself or herself to write it, and offer general guidelines about what should be included. A few possibilities could be:

  • Their experience in the field or business
  • A brief introduction to who they are, where they're from and why they're passionate about joining your team
  • Some hobbies they do outside of work, since this helps them become more personable and accessible to your current and potential customers.
  • Their favorite music or books, or anything that inspires them.
  • A photo (either a headshot or other picture of them doing something they love)

7. Offer guest posts

If your following includes other bloggers and influencers, it's never a bad idea to pitch guest post spots. These can serve two purposes. First, it will provide easy, effortless content to include on your social media feeds and blog. Second, it will provide other bloggers and influencers with an opportunity to gain additional followers. As is the case with several of the content ideas I'm suggesting, this one is a win-win for you and the person or business supplying the content. It also gives your followers an opportunity to gain valuable information about a topic that interests them—so really, everyone wins.

8. Show a day in the life of….

Your followers will enjoy seeing posts that offer an insider's view of what a typical day in your business or office looks like. Think of this as a kind of behind-the-scenes post, letting your followers see what your employees do throughout the day and how they go about getting their job accomplished. These types of posts are usually easy to create and are only a matter of collecting a few snapshots around the office of your team having fun doing what they love to do.

This kind of content not only builds your brand identity, but it also allows your past, current, and future customers to feel like they know your company and the people they'll be working with if they choose to hire you.

9. Recommend reading material

When you recommend reading material and useful sources within your niche or industry, you're doing two things. First, you're showing that you are an expert in what you do, and you've done the research and legwork to ensure it. Second, you're offering helpful information to your followers, who can benefit from the advice and are likely to share it with others.

Best of all, providing a link to a book on Amazon and writing a brief blurb about why you found the book helpful can be done within a matter of minutes. It's easy, sharable content that your followers are going to appreciate and find useful in their day-to-day lives.

Providing a link to a book on Amazon and writing a brief blurb about why you found the book helpful can be done within a matter of minutes.
Providing a link to a book on Amazon and writing a brief blurb about why you found the book helpful can be done within a matter of minutes. It's easy, sharable content that your followers are going to appreciate and find useful in their day-to-day lives. Photo by Gaelle Marcel on Unsplash.

10. Discuss trends

If there's one thing the rise in social media use has taught us, it's that people love to have discussions about topics that are important to them. You can use this to your advantage when creating engaging, sharable content for your business blog or social media feeds. Sometimes, starting the discussion is just a matter of posting a newspaper article about a certain trend related to your business or service, and asking your followers to chime in. For example, if your company is a landscaping service, an article on city codes for yards or national debates about whether front yards can be used for gardening and growing food could be excellent conversation starters. You'd be surprised at how many of your followers might have something to say about their experiences or feelings on the topic.

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