Providing the best brand experience and playing by your own rules.
If you’re following along from last week’s post on Content Marketing, you’re probably ready to start providing valuable content to your target audience. That also probably means that you’re thinking of going straight to Social Media to publish your content since it’s readily available in any media form you want. But the biggest issue that you might not realize yet, is you’re going to have to abide by someone else’s rules to play in their court. Have you ever noticed how often Facebook updates their policy? Did you know that YouTube didn’t use to play ads before videos? At the time of writing this, within the past year, Instagram started allowing sponsored (advertisement) posts in your feed. These changes quickly start to have an effect on how effective your own content is whether it’s distractions or the way you have to create a post. So what is the best way to avoid these obstacles? Have your own platform. What do I mean by this? You need to have your own place where you can share your content and where people are able to experience your brand the way it should be. Let’s get meta for a second. This post is content I created for you (my audience), on my own platform (website) so I can teach you about branding design (valuable content about my field). And you know that you can come back any time to learn more about branding design. Alright, let’s dig into the benefits of having your own platform.

You will have a place to call home

Having your own platform means having a central location where you keep all of your content. Your audience will know exactly where to go to find all of the content you have created. They don’t have to guess which social media site you used to share a tutorial video or informative post. They know they can go straight to your site and find it. Your platform can be built to specifications that best suit your brand and allow you to create and share content the way that works best for your audience. The color scheme matches your brand. The image sizes can be as big as they need to be. The typefaces can match or compliment your logo. And all of the content is relatable to your field. Compared to social media, no one is limiting you on character counts. No one can take your audience’s attention away from your content. And you can share content using any media (video, images, writing, etc.) that works best for you. Essentially, having your own platform allows your target audience to experience your brand the clearest and best way possible.

No Distractions

When you send someone to your website, you know exactly what is there. You know what they’re going to see, what content they’re going to receive, and everything will be pertaining to your brand. This is very different from social media where as someone scrolls through their feed, comes across your post and can easily get distracted by someone else’s post or an ad right in the middle of the feed. With your website, it’s only your content. You don’t have to fight for your audience’s attention. You already have it.

You’ll have a place of reference for other people

As you direct people to your website to learn the valuable information you share, they are going to start relying on your site as a source for that content. Then, when someone they know is looking for information in your field, they can send them your site and the cycle starts over again growing your audience.

You Establish Yourself as a Professional

By having your own place where you’re teaching your audience, you’re also establishing yourself as a professional because you’re showing that you’re knowledgeable in your field. Teaching what you know shows your knowledge and your audience, including your clients, will trust you.

Utilize Social Media to introduce people to your platform

Just because you create content on your own website doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be available in other places. In fact, you should be creating posts in social media as well. Social media is where you audience already is. They check their Facebook and Instagram feeds regularly and they’re on Twitter at all times of the day. And guess what? There are other people in your field that are sharing content on these platforms already. You need to join in and be the biggest sharer of them all. When you create a new post in your blog, share it across social media. Let your audience know you have valuable information that will help them. The best way for your audience to find you is by you going out and finding them. But this is just the beginning of using social media. There’s a lot to utilizing social media while maintaining your own platform, so I will cover it in the next post.

Don’t Overdo It, but Be Consistent

Don’t intimidate yourself by thinking maintaining your own platform is going to be too difficult, or you won’t have time to do it. It can take up as much of you as you allow it. The best practice is to make it part of your routine. The key, is publishing new content consistently on a regular basis. This will keep your audience coming back to your site for new content regularly. And by having your own platform, you know you’ll have a place to share your content that speaks directly to your audience in a way that will build their trust with your brand.

Are you still struggling with the idea of having your own platform? Let me know on my Contact Page.

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