Smart marketers know they need to build a presence on the information giants, Facebook and Google, to remain relevant in today’s digital age. Facebook and Google currently dominate online advertising, search, and traffic. The problem many businesses face is that the two companies constantly change their algorithms making it difficult for businesses to be found. Lack of online visibility makes it even harder for businesses to monetize their content.
It’s time to focus on change, context, and website traffic to remain relevant online and generate revenue from your content. If you’re not willing to do that, then you’re leaving money on the ground for your competition to pick up.
Ways to monetize content
Here are four ways to monetize your content in the age of Facebook and Google dominance.
1. Native Advertising.
Google and Facebook account for more than 49% of digital advertising dollars spent by businesses. This continued growth is partially contributed to being household names. Native advertising drives leads back to your blog, website, or landing page through paid advertising efforts.
Facebook recently announced a change to their newsfeed algorithm with plans show more family and friends updates and less business content. This change forces businesses to spend more on advertising if they want their content viewed by users.
Make native advertising work for your business by promoting valuable content instead of your Facebook page or website. Native ads work best when:
- They tell your brand’s story.
- They deliver content the user can relate to.
- They don’t focus on selling your products or services.
Native advertising is predicted to be a $21 billion industry by 2018, making it too big to ignore. They are gaining traction from mobile users with click through rates being 137% higher on mobile devices than desktop.
Native advertising is the best way to get your content seen by a large audience, drive traffic to your website, and increase sales. They work because they are less invasive than traditional advertising and users are genuinely interested in the message you are sharing.
2. Content Upgrades
Content upgrades are special bonus content pieces or mini-lead magnets placed in your existing content. Businesses create eBooks, free reports, subscription membership sites, and online workshops based on the content they already wrote about on their blog or website.
Don’t just place content upgrades on every page of your website or blog. Use your Google Analytics account to pinpoint which pages are the highest performing. Add content upgrades to the pages that are already performing well. This bonus content is a more in-depth look at a topic the website visitor is already interested in making them more likely to hand over their e-mail address.
Leads responding to free content upgrades are a better quality because not every website visitor will find the upgrades. Those that do are invested in finding more information, highly engaged in the information you are providing, and are more likely to start a customer relationship with you.
Your number of paying leads will increase drastically when your membership website or online workshops offer value your visitors can’t find for free somewhere else. Partner with influencers to make these offers more appealing.
3. Instant Articles.
Google and Facebook launched instant articles solutions to publishers in the past year. Facebook Instant articles were opened to the public in April 2016. Google Accelerated Mobile Pages were released in January of 2016. Both offer Internet users, especially mobile users, a better user experience. They load instantly unlike articles published on your unique URL.
Facebook’s research shows 70% of users are less likely to abandon an instant article – which means more individuals are actually reading your content, seeing your offer, and taking action. More importantly, 70% of mobile users take action within an hour of completing their online search.
At this point, it doesn’t seem like businesses have anything to lose by publishing content via instant article solutions. They experience a decrease in abandonment rates, increase in audience reach, and increase in engagement rates. However, businesses have been slow to make the move, making this a valuable resource.
Take action now before your competitors. You’ll be known for your instant load times, easy access, and positive experience. Why now? You never know when Facebook and Google will give ‘extra credit’ to those already using the features and move you up in your search results.
If you browse the Internet at any given time, you are likely to see videos in your news feeds and search results. Google and Facebook like video and they both give businesses using video more power in their algorithm by showing them first.
In addition, Facebook is investing a lot in securing live video as an important trend in 2017. They recently paid $50 million to companies and celebrities willing to publish content using Facebook Live.
Videos help generate revenue when they:
- Offer unique and valuable information to users.
- Use the right metadata.
- Are shareable.
- Are interactive.
Businesses using video today in their online marketing strategies see higher engagement, increased lead conversions, and a better quality of leads. Individuals want you to make it easy for them to understand your message and they want to feel like they know you on a personal level. Video makes it possible to accomplish both at one time.
Use videos to demo products, share your mission, highlight customer testimonials, and interview team members. Viewers will gain an instant connection to your brand and will want to start a relationship with you.
5. Don’t want to join them? Beat them.
Of course, if you are not too keen on joining the cartel-like hegemony of Facebook and Google, you can always opt to build your own content powerhouse. The web offers a number of solutions that help you control the means of creating content, from inception to distribution. Try a solution like Kajabi which allows you to create a website, sell your digital products, and grow your customers – through one platform. With the platform, you can set up your own course and sell your knowledge to a wide audience. There are of course a number of tools that allow you to create and distribute content, and more often than not, your best bet for distribution is – rather surprisingly – Facebook and Google.
There is no predicting Facebook or Google’s next step. The secret to keeping up with both is to create a well-rounded and unwavering online marketing strategy. Stay updated on their rules to make sure you are easily found online. Being found is the first step to monetizing your online content. Businesses not willing to play by their rules become a tiny speck in business history.
About the Author
Itai Elizur is the COO at Inbound Junction, a content marketing agency specializing in helping startups and business increase their online visibility. Prior to joining the Inbound Junction team, Itai worked as a Creative Manager at Wix.com, and as the Director of Marketing at Infolinks, the 3rd largest website network in the world. Itai specializes in helping business develop and optimize large-scale user acquisition strategies through content, brand messaging and marketing automation.
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