3 things every B2B Marketer needs to know about “viral” content

1. Unless you’re a kitten, there’s no free ride

I’ve known several very talentimagesed public relations professionals who’ve lost contracts in recent years, because a CEO attended a Social Media class or a self-proclaimed Internet “guru” joined a company — and then demanded to know, “Why are we paying for PR when we can get our message out on social media for free?”

Of course, you can upload a video for free — but unless you’re a kitten or Beyoncé, people won’t readily find it.

2. Original content beats shared content

It can be both useful and inexpensive to post links on your site to content that you think your customers will find interesting. Those links may contain keywords that will draw additional visitors to your site. You may serve as a curator for people who trust your site to discover things they find of value. That’s good news until they click those links and they’re gone.

If your site is all press releases and links to other people’s content, there’s no compelling reason to stay.

Original content gives you an opportunity to tell equally interesting stories — that often highlight a role your product or company played in that story. They also contain the most important link – for more information, contact.

3. Editorial buzz is more likely “earned” than “free”

Nothing generates word-of-mouth interest in your product or company like a positive mention in a consumer or trade article. Most trade publications are eager for well-developed stories that can be published with little to no effort on the part of their editorial staff. They appreciate hearing from PR professionals who know what they want and can be trusted to deliver it.

It’s not “free.” It’s hard-earned placement. I don’t pitch stories, I just develop content — but I think the PR people who do the pitching are worth their weight in gold.

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