Let me let you in on a little secret: I have a Skillshare course on content promotion and marketing that recently launched.
It’s an 11-video course with 1 hour and 21 minutes of footage and it’s something I’m pleased with. Send this to anyone you know that is interested in getting started with content marketing and this will fast forward them a couple of months.
Here’s a video intro:
As of this writing, there are 2,048 students taking the class with a 100% average review rating (which I’m incredibly grateful for):
You can get free access here for a limited time.
For this post, my target is hitting 50 people individually.
No automated messages; all one by one.
To make things simpler, I’m going to segment out my targets into two groups:
- Warm – People who already know me.
- Examples: e-mail list, website visitors, people that I know personally who I’ve mentioned in the course, people that I don’t know personally who I’ve mentioned in the course (this is borderline ‘cold’ but I’m putting this in ‘warm’ because people like it when they’re mentioned 🙂 ).
- Cold – People who have no idea who I am but are interested in this type of content.
- Examples: people who have mentioned or linked to similar content, people that I don’t know who I mentioned in the course.
Let’s get started!
Building Your Warm List
Skillshare did some of the work for me by listing out some resources/tools I mentioned, so let’s start there:
Let’s make a Google spreadsheet to keep track of all this. One tab for ‘Warm’ and one tab for ‘Cold’ to keep things organized.
Look at column C. Column C is sad because it has no love. 🙁
We need to find some e-mails or else we’re stuck in the water.
Enter… Email Hunter!
E-mail Hunter allows me to find who I’m looking for pretty quickly. All I need to do is type in the URL and viola:
But wait… we live in an age where we can automate a lot of our work. Why not automate this?
Because people know when they’re being put into an automation sequence. In this case, we’re aiming for a higher conversion rate because we’re only sending a set amount of e-mails.
If we were sending thousands of e-mails, it might be a different story.
People can tell when something is personalized towards them and it creates a good experience. When it’s purely automated, it’s very easy to see through. And this is coming from a guy who loves to automated sales e-mails!
So now I’m able to find e-mails when I know the name of the individual.
But in some cases, I don’t know who I should be reaching out to. Who should I speak to at Canva?
Let’s try LinkedIn.
First, let’s look for people who work at Canva and have the keyword ‘Community’ in their title:
Not quite what we’re looking for yet, but if we scroll down, we find someone who might be a fit:
And if he isn’t the right guy? No problem, just ask him if he’d be kind enough to refer you to the right person.
Let’s try to find his e-mail address now…
Now we just need to rinse and repeat until the list is filled.
Templates to use:
There are a few different types of groups in the ‘warm list’:
- People who I already have a relationship with – someone that I can genuinely consider more than an ‘acquaintance’. Meaning that we have helped each other out in some way, shape or form.
- People who I haven’t spoken to at all that were directly mentioned – anybody that was mentioned in the content.
- People who I haven’t spoken to at all that were indirectly mentioned – somebody that is mentioned inside a source I cited. For example, if I linked to ’10 Influencers of 2016’, this would be the actual 10 influencers mentioned in whatever source I linked to.
People who I already have a relationship with:
This one is simpler because I can get to the point immediately. Here’s an example:
I hope all is well! Wanted to let you know that I mentioned you in this Skillshare content marketing course that I did right here. Let me know what you think!
People who I haven’t spoken to at all that were directly mentioned:
I love the work that you do over at [COMPANY]. So much in fact that I mentioned you in this Skillshare content marketing course that I did right here.
Curious to know what your thoughts are when you have time!
Notice how I say I’m ‘curious’ to know what they think ‘when they have time’? There’s zero expectation to have them check it out immediately and give me their feedback. After all, they don’t know me or owe me anything.
People who I haven’t spoken to at all that were indirectly mentioned:
I wanted to let you know that I mentioned a piece that you’re featured in this Skillshare content marketing course that I did right here.
Curious to know what your thoughts are when you have time!
Building Your Cold List
The next step is to start building a cold e-mail list of people who have shared similar content. The idea is that people who have shared similar content are already interested in the topic and have shown a willingness to share posts around that topic.
Google ‘content marketing course’ to see what people are linking to:
Plug one of the URLs into Buzzsumo:
Click on ‘View Sharers’ and select individuals who you think would be a fit for promoting your post:
Go into Buzzsumo and repeat the same phrase ‘content marketing course’:
It’s important to set some type of criteria when you are reaching out to people to share. Think of it as qualifying a lead. For example, you might only want to target people who:
- Have a good retweet ratio – a good retweet ratio means a higher probability of getting your content shared (as opposed to a bot that won’t share someone else’s content).
- Have more than 5,000 Twitter followers – bigger reach never hurts.
- Have a website domain authority of more than 45 – the higher a website’s domain authority, the more SEO equity you’ll get when they link to you.
Content distribution can be broken down into two parts: paid and manual outreach. Paid can scale quickly while manual is great to do when you’re just starting out and have budget constraints. When used in conjunction, they can be extremely powerful.
Remember, your content won’t take off if you don’t promote it. Give this a shot for at least a month and see what your results are. I’d recommend making a spreadsheet to track your outreach efforts because what gets measured, gets managed.
Let me know in the comments below how this process went for you, or if you have any other tips on personalized content promotion that you’d like to share!
Disclaimer: As with any digital marketing campaign, your individual results may vary.