Originally at http://www.business2community.com/content-marketing/6-steps-make-content-shine-01210958

On average, marketers spend more than a quarter of their budget on content marketing, with 24% now devoting more than 50% to content.

With massive amounts of content being published and shared every day, competition for attention is fierce. So, how can you rise above the competition and ensure that your content reaches its intended target market?

Stand out from the crowd with content marketing

Stand out from the crowd

Build a reputation

If you’re reading this post, you probably aren’t new to Business2Community. You’ll have used the site before and found it to be a reliable source of high-quality content and that’s why you’ve come back for more. It’s built a reputation within the marketing industry and, for content to get noticed, brands need to carve out a similar reputation in their own field of expertise.

Here are 5 steps to ensure you’re on the right track:

1.  Be genuine

The ultimate goal of any marketing activity is to generate more business, but this doesn’t mean direct sales. If you genuinely want to help your prospective customers, think about the challenges they face and what information you can offer to make their lives a little bit easier. Good content should educate, empower or entertain.

2.  Be passionate

If you don’t care about your content, why should anybody else? Content is a chance to show your passion for what you do and, in turn, this will assure the person consuming the content that they’re in safe hands.

3.  Be focused

Stick to what you know. Carve out a niche for yourself and talk about the things you understand better than anyone else. No one can be an expert in everything, so provide real value within a specific area and before long you’ll start to cement a reputation within that niche.

4.  Be strategic

A content calendar is different to a strategy. Rather than saying “we’ll post 1 blog post per week, produce 1 infographic every month and write one ebook per quarter”, think about how one piece of content can flow into another as part of the same content campaign. Think carefully about the topics you choose, how content can be repurposed and optimised for different channels, how you will promote the content and how you will measure its success.

5.  Be consistent

One successful piece of content doesn’t mean you can rest on your laurels. All content should aim to reach (or surpass) those same high-standards and a single low-grade campaign can seriously damage your reputation as a great content brand, so don’t let the levels drop!

6.  Learn and improve

As with any marketing activity, measure your success. What worked well and what wasn’t so successful? What can be done differently to build on this success? Regularly reviewing your activities and tweaking your content strategy accordingly is essential in order to progress.

By following these steps you can establish a reputation within your industry for being a reliable source of genuinely insightful content. Rather than getting lost amongst the mass of run-of-the-mill content that’s being churned out, potential customers will actively look out for what you have to say.

For innovative content marketing ideas, techniques and case studies, register for a free webinar on April 28th. Luke Brynley-Jones of Our Social Times will be joined by Subi Gnanaseharam (Jamie Oliver Ltd), Nathalie Bosshard (Wander AG) and Adam Kay (Shoutlet) to explore the latest techniques for creating and sharing content, and analyse innovative content marketing case studies from leading brands.

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