Content creation when time is money.

February 20, 2013

Google loves authoritative, fresh, keyword rich content, and will reward you for being an expert in your field by sending searching traffic your way. Online content is key in creating a conversation around your services, building your brand, demonstrating your authority in your area of expertise, and influencing potential clients in your favor.

Every item of information you put online about your company is content. No matter how long or short.

With only 24 hours in the day, sometimes there’s only so much you can do. Yes, it could take time to create useful content that you can be proud of, an investment of billable hours you think you can’t afford.

(Note the word “investment”. Definition: undertaking an activity for material gain.)

With so many different types of content for you to choose from, there’s no excuse. You can choose a channel which maximizes the audience impact and minimizes billable hour investment.

Some of the ideas could even be implemented into something you’re already doing.

The point is; do a little, do a lot, just make sure you do something.

Social Media – Time requirement – Very Low

Twitter posts: with a limit of 140 characters you can begin to build authority with minimum time investment

Answer a question: Go on. Jump on an industry specific forum or go to LinkedIn Answers. You know you know the answer. Why not demonstrate your expertise and maybe win yourself a profitable contact? According to a Hubspot report, 61% of B2B companies it surveyed acquired a customer through LinkedIn in 2011.

Facebook post: If your clients hang out there then go, engage them on their turf.

Blog – Time requirement – Low to medium

It doesn’t have to be war and peace. Really.

Seth Godin is the absolute master of the concise blog. Here’s a tip; Choose your subject, choose your busiest client, you have 5 minutes to explain it to them before they show you the other side of the door. Go!

Case Studies – Time requirement – Low to Medium

I love, love, love case studies for professional services businesses. It’s a fantastic opportunity to demonstrate your expertise in a real-life context. You should be collecting case studies where ever you accomplish something you’re proud of for a client. Make a note, take a photo/video, and make sure you get that testimonial to support it.

It can later be organized into a brilliantly targeted piece of marketing content for your business with little time expenditure on your part. Use it on your website, in a published article, on your blog, tweet about it, pop it into a presentation. Endless possibilities.

Presentations – Time requirement – Low (on the basis you already have it)

Don’t limit your valuable pearls of wisdom to your speaking audience at any conference or meeting. The slides used in your presentation are valuable content, put them to work as a marketing tool and post it as online content using a platform like Slideshare. It’ll give your audience both physical and online, a valuable resource that they can refer to repeatedly, and an additional way to connect with you.

Newsletters – Time requirement – Medium

Creating the template is half the battle. Identifying sources of news stories to interest and engage your audience is the other half. The trick here is to ask yourself, “What problem does this piece of information solve for my client.”

If it doesn’t don’t waste your time including it. Clients engage with you because you offer them a way to achieve a goal. Your newsletter should demonstrate just that.

Content offers a myriad of possibilities for professional services and knowledge business to demonstrate authority and build credibility, and it needn’t eat into valuable billable time to create.

The most effective content strategy incorporates a number of different channels, determined by your clients’ your audience’s interests and requirements, and based on your schedule.