How to Use Content Distribution to Your Advantage

6 minutes

Millions of Blog Posts are Written and Published Every Day

This does not include posts on Instagram, LinkedIn, Reddit, and other social platforms … or tweets. You get the idea.

So no matter how much time and thought you put into understanding your ideal customers, building your content strategy, developing your editorial plan, or crafting engaging, high-quality copy, the success of your content often lives or dies by your distribution and promotion choices.

It takes more than posting your content on social media or linking to it via email or newsletter. Of course these channels are essential, but they should not be considered the entire content marketing puzzle.

This article will help you to develop a content distribution strategy. It will also show you how to promote your content to increase reach.

What is Content Distribution?

The process of publishing and promoting content is called content distribution. Effective content distribution involves promotion via various media channels to ensure that you reach your target audience.

Types of Content That You Can Distribute

Before you begin to evaluate available content distribution channels, it’s vital to assess your content assets. There are many content types you can promote, including:

  • Blog posts
  • Guides and white papers
  • Research studies
  • Research, pillar pages, and other lengthy reads (e.g., how-to guides)
  • Success stories and case studies
  • Infographics
  • Checklists
  • Templates and ebooks
  • Articles (nonblog post)
  • Landing pages for product products
  • Videos
  • Podcast episodes
  • Newsletters

It’s best to establish your goals and KPIs so you can choose the best promotional channel for each format if you want to increase brand awareness.

Distribution Channels: What to Focus On

The channels for content distribution are the media and platforms where you can share your content. Depending on the audience and your resources, specific channels might be different. However, we can generally divide them into three categories:

  • Your company’s owned channels are content distribution facilities. These include your blog, social media profiles, and an email database. In some cases, you may also have a mobile application.
  • Loyal third parties own earned/shared channels. These could be forums, review sites, and friendly bloggers. This channel has one feature: although posting is free, you do not own the content.
  • Paid channels charge a fee to promote your content. These platforms host social media advertising, paid ads, and media that post sponsored content. They also have paid influencers who are available to talk about your brand.
Key Types of Content Distribution Channels

Choose the Right Media to Promote Your Content

There are many factors to consider when deciding how, where, or when to promote your content. Paid channels are quick, but they require investment to maintain their results. While organic (owned and earned media channels) may take a while to see results, they are stable and long-lasting. It’s important to find a healthy balance.

Remember that “spray and pray” marketing tactics aren’t reliable in today’s turbulent marketplace. Spray and pray marketing involves sending ads or other forms of marketing content to as many people as possible (spray) and hoping that some are motivated to buy your product or at least show interest. Unfortunately, a paid ad won’t bring you the same number of leads as a how-to guide with ungated content.

Semrush has created comparison charts to help you evaluate which content distribution channels are best for your content. These charts illustrate the most common content formats and the KPIs that you can track.

Owned Content Distribution Channels

These channels are essential for brands because you own all the content and can modify it to improve performance. You can also quickly reach out and contact the owner of the referring domain if there is a broken link. You can also communicate with your “owned” audience to nurture them and move them up the funnel.

Owned Content Distribution Channels

Earned Content Distribution Channels

You have less control over these channels as the resource that you post your content is not yours. It becomes more challenging to review and track the performance of outdated content and convert users into leads and contacts. The platform owner can also decide to delete your publication at any moment. It’s worth it if the earned platform is an industry leader or influencer.

Earned Content Distribution Channels

These channels are often considered the most difficult because they require careful budget planning and ROI forecasting. However, they offer the opportunity to launch a promotion campaign quickly and achieve measurable results that impact the bottom line.

Paid Content Distribution Channels

Example Tools and Platforms Where You Can Distribute Your Content and Measure Its Performance

Automation is becoming more critical for marketers who deal with content distribution. As a result, there are more owned and paid platforms than ever before. Below is a brief overview of resources that will help you promote and measure your content’s performance.

Earned Distribution Platforms

  • Medium is an open digital publishing platform with 170M readers.
  • HARO (Help a Reporter Out) connects journalists and bloggers seeking expertise with sources who have that expertise, one of which could be you.
  • GaggleAMP is an employee advocacy platform where your employees and stakeholders feel comfortable sharing your content with their networks.
  • Disqus is a networked comment system where you can promote your products and services in discussions about similar topics.
  • Quora is a social question-and-answer platform where people gain and share knowledge.

  • PR Newswire is an online portal that helps you create and distribute press releases locally and/or internationally. It can also help you identify influencers in your space, contact media outlets, and measure ROI.
  • Outbrain displays native content and ads on websites and mobile platforms. It helps brands connect with 1/3 of the world’s consumers. 
  • WiseStamp is a tool for creating and managing custom-branded email signatures across organizations.
  • Semrush Brand Monitoring tracks your brand along with those of your competitors. You can monitor estimated reach, analyze mention sentiment, track referral traffic and, evaluate your PR effectiveness.
  • Prowly is a PR, Media Relations, and communications platform that helps you manage all your PR activities in one place.

To promote growth, distribute your content carefully.

Content distribution is not a one-size-fits-all approach. It’s a waste of time and money not to have a strategy. You will need to research, test, and analyze your data to find the best fit for your business. It won’t take too long to see the results if you do it right. These are the final tips to help you get started:

  • Don’t be afraid to explore channels that you’ve never used before —they may hold great potential.
  • Automate as much as possible.
  • Make sure you optimize your content so it is easy to find and read wherever you publish it.

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