John McDougall Site

Using the Content Authority Flywheel for Advanced Digital Marketing

Below is part six of a podcast series that we recorded in order to create our book, Talk Marketing – How to Gain Authority and Expert Status, Even If No One Has Ever Heard of You. In this episode, John McDougall and John Maher talk about the Authority Content Flywheel, which utilizes SEO, blog posts, podcasts, video, and social media to generate and share content that users and Google will love.

Following the audio file is the transcript of the podcast, which we would normally simply edit and add sub-headings to in order to create a simple blog post from a podcast. However, here we’re presenting the fully edited, prose-version of the transcript that we used in the book.

To be effective, your web marketing needs high-quality, consistent content that is both optimized and strategized. But for even better results, you need to go a step further by repurposing the content and automating aspects of your marketing strategy. I refer to this as the authority content flywheel.

The flywheel is a marketing model representing the energy you can create when you leverage content and automation to drive your marketing campaigns. You build the flywheel by generating content, repurposing content, and using automation to drive marketing campaigns. Then, over time, your flywheel has so much energy that is just releasing more content makes it spin even more. If your wheel’s not spinning, you’re not winning.

Repurpose Content and Use Automation to Strengthen Marketing

I started this book by saying that my number one golden nugget from almost three decades of search engine optimization is the idea that you need to have consistent, high-quality content and make sure it’s optimized and strategic, not just dumped on your site.

My number two golden nugget is that you’re really missing out on a big, easy win if you don’t repurpose that content in a variety of ways. All the content you generate for search engine optimization purposes can be fed into your social media channels. Using a tool like MeetEdgar, you can set up a list of hundreds of blog posts and website pages in a spreadsheet and have that feed and refeed to Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.

Just sharing a blog post once is not nearly as effective as putting it out there several times over the course of months or even years. If it’s good, evergreen content, then it should go into your content archive to be shared and re-shared.

That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t also post some personal things on your social channels and ideally have conversations there. But having consistent thought leadership content holds down the fort by giving you great stuff to share, even when you don’t have time for the deeper conversational part of social media. This can also keep your social media costs low, especially if you’re not interested in paying a social media agency or an employee.

Don’t stop at social media. Make sure that you’re also sending emails. Email marketing and marketing automation are two of the most overlooked tactics out there. It’s easy to make a template so that once a week or once a month, you can send an email with a list of your latest blog posts or links to your podcasts. The people on your list will appreciate the information. Remember, if you don’t use your email list, you’ll lose it faster than you will if you use it to share helpful insights.

Maintaining constant contact is much easier when you have a series of podcasts, videos, case studies, testimonials, and blog posts highlighting your insights, and there are tools that can help. HubSpot is a great tool if you want a powerful Swiss Army knife. MailChimp has solid deliverability and inexpensive marketing automation. Keap, formally known as Infusionsoft, is the choice of information marketers, because it’s flexible, even though it’s a little bit more complicated to learn.

Marketing automation where you send a series of follow-up emails can make or break a campaign, but many people don’t do it. After the pandemic, the number of customer touches required for a sale went up significantly, and marketing automation is a part of the flywheel that will save you time and keep your leads alive.

Following up fast is also critical for your website leads. If you get a lead from the web and follow up in five minutes, you will likely close that deal. If you follow up within an hour, you have a chance. If you follow up after an hour, your chances plummet. I mean, if it’s a referral or a really, really good lead, you might have a chance, but a lot of times when people fill out a form or contact you from the internet, they’re doing that with a bunch of sites. So, you have to follow up quickly to get the most out of it.

According to ServiceBell:

  • Businesses that respond within an hour are almost seven times more likely to have meaningful conversations with decision-makers.
  • Fast responders win up to 50% of sales.
  • Calling after 30 minutes is 21 times less effective.

According to a study by Brevet, 80% of sales require an average of five follow-ups to close the deal. However, 44% of sales reps follow up with a prospect only once before giving up. After four follow-ups, 94% of salespeople have given up. A simple five or seven-email marketing automation email sequence can easily solve this.

The most important thing with a lot of this stuff is just to pick any of the tools I mentioned above and start using them. Don’t be intimated. And don’t only think about it. Just pick one of the tools and start playing.

Golden Nuggets of Digital Marketing

Let’s recap the golden nuggets. Number one, you must consistently generate content, which is WAY EASIER to do if you use talk marketing. That positions you as an expert, builds authority, and maybe even makes you a bit of a celebrity in your niche.

Use the power and popularity of podcasting and videos with a healthy dose of search-engine-optimized transcripts to your advantage. Repurpose your content into eBooks, books, social media posts, sales emails, and marketing automation drip campaigns.

Then, take it up another notch. Leverage your powerful content, especially your videos, to get PR coverage. Convince people to do joint venture partnerships, co-create content, or be on your podcast so you can get in front of their audiences. Then, use your eBooks and books to get more speaking engagements. Turn your blog posts into topic clusters for advanced SEO. And then you can turn down your ads if you feel like it.

When you are consistently visible in search engines and on social media because of your high-quality insights and thought leadership content, customers will come to you instead of you reaching out to them. They’ll find you on Google throughout the sales funnel and buyer’s journey. They’ll download your eBook when researching, and they will fill out your forms or email you when they’re ready to buy.

Because they’ve interacted so much with your content, they will be more educated on your processes and more aligned with your thinking. They will already feel as if they know, like, and trust you. And isn’t that exactly how you want them to feel?

Use the Flywheel, so You Don’t Get Stuck in a Rut

Many people who do SEO and blogging get stuck in a rut. They hire an employee or an agency to fill their quota of 500-word blog posts or whatever they’ve decided on. This doesn’t maximize their efforts, and it compromises the potential of their marketing.

In contrast, when you make an authority content flywheel, you use marketing automation to improve your efforts. The flywheel keeps turning. Nothing slows it down. This is much more effective than standard digital marketing.

For instance, your blog posts can become part of a seven-step follow-up email sequence that happens when someone downloads your eBook, which might also be a collection of your blog posts and customer stories. When you repurpose content and use automated drip email campaigns, your marketing processes keep happening while you sleep.

With a tool like MeetEdgar, you draw attention to your hard-made blog content not just once but multiple times. Although it’s automatic, you still have to set it up and ensure that you’re highlighting the evergreen blog posts, not time-sensitive posts such as when you’re going to a conference and what you expect to get out of it.

Once you set up the automation, it will keep feeding your content to social, email, and things like that. That’s the flywheel — even while you’re sleeping, this wheel keeps turning and bringing in customers.

Taking the First Step and Creating Habits

Effective marketing is critical for the growth and success of your business — but that doesn’t mean wasting time or money. You can spend tens of thousands of dollars and countless hours launching marketing campaigns or creating web content, but if the right strategies don’t back your efforts, they’re futile.

Great marketing takes hard work, but more importantly, it takes smart work.

Well-written, well-placed content can help drive people to your site and convert them into customers, but to optimize your time and resources, you must avoid high-priced, time-consuming, single-use content. Instead, leverage your knowledge, turn what you know about your niche into podcasts and videos, and then give it multiple lives as site content, newsletters, social posts, eBooks, and even courses.

Showing prospects that you’re an authority and convincing them to trust you is as simple as talking.

To take the first step, you need to identify your goal. So, what’s your goal? Increased web traffic? Better conversion rates? More content? Better content? Stronger leads? More cost-effective marketing? More time? More money? Talk marketing can help you reach all of these goals.

Once you have a goal, you must establish a habit to reach it. That requires you to create joyful, productive actions that you want to repeat. With talk marketing, that’s as simple as setting aside half an hour once a week or a block of time every month. Then, all you need to do is talk.

Talk about your business. Answer your customers’ most pressing questions. Educate listeners about your industry. Explain why you’re different from the competition. Interview experts. And then, just keep talking. As we’ve shown in this book, you can create powerful content for multiple marketing channels just by talking.

We’ve given you everything you need to get started, but if you want the most bang for your efforts, our Talk Marketing Academy can provide customized guidance as you learn how to turn talking into a full-scale content generation factory.

We have distilled generations of experience into our courses, and we’re excited to see how they can help your marketing get to the next level. For detailed instructions on every part of this process and weekly coaching tailored to your business’s specific growth goals, book a free discovery call at talkmarketing.com. There’s plenty of information out there, but with a coach, you can implement it much more effectively and save an enormous amount of wasted time. Just click the schedule button, and you will see our availability via the Calendly application.

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