This post was originally written by Tom De Baere on his blog, B2B Marketing Experiences.
Online competition is intense. Soon, great content is only going to make it to page 3 of Google. Bigger competitors have more content and better content. And bigger budgets to promote that content.
To compete, you need to focus on a topic, and keep focussing on that topic to create a compounding effect. A content hub, along with a content hub strategy, helps you to focus on a topic, by publishing focused content on a central place.
This blog post covers some fundamental questions that need to be answered to build your content hub strategy:
- What decisions you need to make before starting a content hub.
- The concept of a content hub, and the different types of content hubs (branded and native),
- a special case: e-commerce and content hubs.
- and how to run a content hub operation.
Let’s get started!
Why a content hub and a content hub strategy?
Websites and blogs are well understood. We understand what they are, and what they do. But the term “content hub” gets many confused. Is it a blog? Is it a website? Both?
In it’s core, it’s a place on the web that is entirely brand owned, a place where brands act like publishers. A content hub can serve the following objectives:
- Build and Show your Authority: online buyers follow the leaders and trust the authorities. Consistently publishing trustworthy content is a proven way to build thought leadership;
- Create Visibility and Traffic: consistently publishing content assets or media assets on a content hub, at least content that buyers seek, creates a compounding amount of traffic that grows in value over time.
- Create Engagement: as content hubs are not as sales pages, readers are more inclined to sharing, signing-up, trying, attending, …
- Control the experience: a content hub is entirely under your control. This is different to social media or content platforms such as WordPress or Medium, where the owners of that platform can change the rules any time to fit their objective, but not yours.
- Generate leads: content on content hubs can serve any purpose, ranging from awareness, consideration or acting upon call to actions.
- Provide Data & Insights: content hubs provide you with a ton of data, which can inform you on the domains of interest of your audience. This new insight will help you in progressively be more effective at publishing. In some cases data is the only thing you want from a content hub, to spot trends, predict trends, or test new concepts or ideas.
Engaging your customers is at the heart of successful marketing programs. For more than 20 years, Cheryl has been building and executing content and thought leadership strategies designed to do just that. She is excited to be applying that well-honed skill to a help companies like Microsoft, Cisco, 3M, Intel, Capital One and Barclaycard tap into their stakeholder communities and build sophisticated content strategies.
Her experience base spans a range of industries – from technology and financial services to retail, travel, consumer products and healthcare. Cheryl has served as an integral member of her clients’ marketing teams, providing counsel on marketing and brand strategy, thought leadership, media relations, product introductions, and event management.
Prior to joining ComBlu, Cheryl spent 10 years leading corporate marketing for large, complex organizations.