B2B Growth: Your Daily B2B Marketing Podcast
B2B Growth: Your Daily B2B Marketing Podcast

Episode 1668 · 1 month ago

Creation vs. Distribution with Justin Simon

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

In this episode, Benji talks to Justin Simon, Head of Content Marketing at Metadata.io.

If you struggle to get the most out of your content, Justin is here to help. Today, Justin shares how to spread out content so you get more pipeline, traffic, and attention.

Conversations from the front lines of marketing. This is be tob growth. Hey friends, welcome back to be to be growth. Today I am joined by Justin Simon. He is in charge of content marketing at Metadata and Justin, we are so glad to have you here with us on B Tob Growth. Man, awesome. Yeah, I have to be here. Okay. So, Justin as it pertains to content marketing, particularly in the beat to be space that you and I are in, I wondered if there was something right off the top that you wish you saw less of. That's going to be my first question to you. Is there something you wish you saw less of than the beat to be space, in the content space? I wish I saw less direct posting of content and like selfserving content. So the you know, the idea of like we have a Webinar, we have a you know, a even a podcast episode, or we have, you know, here's our thing, here's our newest you know, this is our stuff. I'd much rather prefer you pull the content out of what that thing is and just share that content on the platform. I would agree. If you follow Hashtags, man, on Linkedin and you go for the whole it is like just you reposted your company's thing again, didn't you, and you didn't add anything to it. You just posted that graphic for that that Webinar. Huh, Hashtag Webinar. Hello, okay, cool. Well, today I actually I think it's the first way I ever really became aware of the work you're doing around repurposing, which I think is a great conversation to have. But there was a specific post that I saw on Linkedin, your content right, not about some Webinar or anything, and I'm going to read it for us here to set up where I want to want to take my questions and this conversation. But you said that it's really easy to say that you are repurposing content,...

...but it's harder to do because most people don't know what's holding them back and the problem is the wrong mindset, which here at be to be growth just and we talked about mindset all the time, so it lined up so perfectly with with the conversations we're having. You said you're creating too much content with no plan to actually get it in front of people. I bet you have no shortage of content being created, but it's probably not being distributed and repurpose so you need to shift your mindset from a creation mindset to a distribution mindset. And you went on from there and that's where you know we're going to jump off that conversation. So, okay, I hear repurpose content and that phrase is tossed out a lot. So I want to start with giving you an opportunity to just define it for us. And what does it mean to you? Yeah, I mean, the reason it's defined different ways because it truly can mean different things to different people. Out of that is base core form. repurposing contents nothing more than taking one thing and remixing it, reusing it, chopping it into either another thing or many other things. So repurpose content for one person might mean taking a blog post and turning that into social for another person that might mean taking a youtube video and turning that into tick tock. Another person that might be, you know, shooting a whole bunch of shorts videos, merging them all together and putting them as a long form youtube video. It's all repurposed, it's all readone in different ways. It's just kind of taking one thing and yeah, I kind of like to think of it as like you're just taking one thing and remixing into another. Right. I think what's interesting is that the history of repurpose content in the lexicon of content marketing has had these ebbs and flows. Right. So I remember like maybe two thousand and eighteen when it when repurpose meant basically like well, we need to get five tweets out of this and we need just like...

...more, more and more, like get is like the maximount you can and get in front of people as often as possible. But we aren't really going exactly in that same stream here in two thousand and twenty two. That was great maybe back then, but you see sort of an evolution and you often speak to that, talk about how the mindset of what you're talking about when talk about repurposes may be slightly different than that. Yeah, it's not necessarily. I think it's being strategic at the end of the day and being realistic. So yeah, that two thousand and eighteen. That that classic Gary v Slide Deck. The you know, I'll take one thing and cut it up into a thousand things. Super Inspirational and I think in I'd be lying if I said that wasn't actually an inspiration. Probably at the you know, very beginning. For me and a lot of and for a lot of this right, but I think the the react when the rubber meets the road in the reality sets in as a as a content marketer who's got to actually get it done, and a lot of times at orgs where their support needed to actually make that happen. So, like m brand guidelines need to be followed and you know, especially if you're talking about doing this for a company like there, it's very easy on a personal brand for instance, to kind of just say, okay, I'm going to go crazy and just post a bunch of stuff and try a bunch of different meanings. It's not always as easy when you're trying to do it for corporate brand. And so yeah, I think thinking through the strategy of that, though, I'm always asking the question of like why, what's the purpose? What's the function? How do we maximize what we're doing? I'm a classic maximizer in that form of of like strengths finder, if you're familiar with any of that stuff. Like my what what drives me is to get the most out of what we have and especially as a content leader, we're creating stuff all the time. That's what we're being tasked with. Hey, you are the content leader, you have the content team, or you're working freelance or you're figuring this out like we, thankfully company. He's now understand the importance of content marketing and the value and it's...

...actually becoming more and more valuable in a more sought out position at companies. So like that's awesome, but then the spotlight gets turned and so, okay, you gotta, you gotta perform now, like what does that look like? In for a lot of people, that's that's run in the hamster wheel of content creation and just we're going to create its output. It's we're going to create as much stuff as we humanly possibly can as a team, and that's where it stops. One thing I want to follow up with is is team. You mentioned it. Their team size is eat a real thing. You came from a larger team, now you work with a smaller team and you've seen this strategy of repurposing really provide like a ton of reward. It's not just about and we did like new content, new content, new content, but there's went, like you said, strategy in a small team setting. Obviously now you're seeing tons of reward. They're right. Totally. Yeah, at my last company, if you included like our interns who were who were worked throughout the year, I had a larger content team than I we have a marketing team at Metadata, and so this is just interesting how those things work out. And that was, honestly, the other a huge thing for me and in my evolution of this was going from having a full on content team with full time video people, full time social people, full time writers, and they each had their own jobs and I sort of played the coach role of like getting them and play and understanding what you know, what plays we were going to run and what we're going to do and help. You know, I really played that role. Come over to Metadata, it's content team of one, it's marketing team of three, it's we gotta get stuff out, and so for me that I was like, oh shoot, I'm only one person here. Now I've really got to think about maximizing right, you've got I've really got to think about getting the most out of what we have. And so that's where my mindset started as far as like, okay, we can actually create less original stuff, because when I came in,...

...we are creating multiple original pieces of content every single week at metadata and it was it was just the constant of like all right, what's next? All right, what's next? All right, what are we creating next? What's the what's the next thing? And so being able to kind of pump the brakes there and say like that's awesome, we've got all the stuff. What if we got more out of what we did and then spread that calendar out a little bit to allow us to really give ourselves breathing room to do more important work like strategy, creativity, saying through how to make this land the best possible way, because when you're just constantly creating and constantly turning out content, all of those other things kind of falls to the wayside. Before we get to like an example of how you would do this, I want to ask a couple follow up questions there. So, for Metadata specifically, what were those pieces of content that you guys were churning out often when you first came on the team? Justin yeah, at the time it was really blog heavy. We were writing post, we were getting post written for us. We had a series going at the time, an nofluffs given series, where we were working with other awesome marketers to have them essentially guest post and write on our blog and being able to do stuff like that. So it was a really blog heavy strategy to start, which for me made it easy because I had come from that world. But yeah, just trying to figure out how best to utilize what we had, but then also kind of plan and figure out what kind of what came next. So I guess in a real world example, before we just throw out hypotheticals, as you re evaluate, what was the change in mindset in maybe if there was a change in distribution, what did you what did you kind of hone in on? Yeah, for me, the the honing in not so I had I had set up some of these particular frameworks before I came to Metadata, and so we were I was already kind of set up with these ideas of like distribution doc so like you have a post and you're actually figure out what you want and...

...where you want to post at and try to come up with the the end game plan for it. So I kind of already knew how I wanted to set that was up and come up with the distribution for it. But it was just a it didn't take much work, but a convincing the other people on the team like hey, let's like pause this down, like I know it's worth it, this is worth it. We don't have to do you know, we don't have to do this, and then be able to this is the other reality and the other side of coin is being able to prove it out and show reason volts. And so that was the next step. was like, okay, we're going to take a break, we're going to try to reassess what we're doing on the on the content, that distribution side, but then it's got to prove itself out. If it didn't work, I'd be at the same point I was at for and maybe I would have had a reassess. Thankfully it worked and we're able to kind of get traction on it and make that work. For I find that we don't have to do this, like take a break, is so rough. That conversation for marketers who are especially in something that is seemingly working, like in your guys situation, where you have guest bloggers writing and you have a system down, it's like, well, we don't really need to take a break, can we like evolved it as we go, but sometimes in that taking a step back, you see things that you don't you literally just don't have time for, like it's there. So I love that you said that we don't have to do this, we can, we can take a quick pause. We want a better outcome and obviously that's what we're going to be judged on ultimately. But that strategy pieces is so huge and all this. Okay, so let me do this. I'm going to hit you with like let's say I work at a company and we have an original research piece and I'm coming to you and I'm going, how should I be thinking about repurposing this? Justin like break it down for me. Yeah, the first thing, the I mean at the tippy top, as the content person, you have to be super familiar with what that research is, who it's for, why it matters, because maybe you're not the one who initiated that even the first place. Like, so at the top, and the reason I sin that seems super...

...fundamental, because it is, but the reason you need to be able to do that as so then you can understand what can come out of that, because I think that's what you're trying to figure out. What can I take out of this research or out of this you know, let's say, if it's original research, you probably put together some sort of document, Ebook, PDF, slide deck, whatever, where it breaks the actual the the data down, and then what I would do is I would go through it and find the best subtopics, the best you know, if you I did this at text mess we had, and they still do it, had an original research piece on video research and essentially it was taking that and figuring out what are the best pieces that are coming out of it. Video length, of the he was a huge part, or video titles or thumbnails, anything you can pull out, and so then you can take those subtopics and you can create other pieces of content around that. So, for instance, we had a blog post around video length or we had a podcast episode around video length. There were, you know, and then we had tweets pointing to the podcast and put so you can start to see how that stuff starts to formulate. But for me it really starts at the you know I call it like the cornerstone piece of that content and then breaking that down into subtopics and sub pieces of content from there. HMM, okay, so that's with original research. I'm going to just throw out like another piece that people might have. So if we play this game again, I'm at a company. We hold a monthly Webinar and it's already something that we're pulling off. It's in our regular rotation. How would you be strategically thinking about repurposing that content? Yep, it's literally this is the best part. It's the almost the exact same format. You're just thinking through different maybe channels. So the format for a Webinar. You're getting that in video, you're getting that in audio. So...

...now I'm starting to think through. Okay, what are the up? Maybe there's some audio stuff we could do. Maybe definitely video stuff we can do. Maybe it's as simple as housing it on our website or housing it on Youtube. We're cutting up those best parts out of the Webinar. It could be taking any it. A lot of webinars have q and a attached to him. So taking the questions that came out of that and maybe we're going to create more content off of those questions to answer those. Maybe there are questions I got answered in the Webinar that we knew ahead of time, very specific. So if we're going to cover X, Y and Z thing, if I know I have this very maybe it's a ten minute clip that I know and that's in that Webinar. I know I can take that ten minute clip ahead of time, answer the question and then post that on Youtube. That might be able to answer a question that somebody searching. And that's where it's really become cyclical, because if you're thinking about the distribution ahead of time, it impacts your planning before you even do the thing. Yeah, that's what's so crucial about this one. Honestly, just in this is what has made your content so helpful for me. Is Because, when you think about distribution, this almost should be a no brainer for marketing. But like, because there's so many distribution channels and the tendency is to go well, if we just create more content, that's some sort of strategy, right, like just push out good content or like push out content that ranks only valuable. Whatever valuable means. That that shifting target, but I love that. Okay, and the part that you said that I wanted to focus in on for a second was know the content, which sounds so practical, but in a sense, like with a Webinar, you don't have to know anything about the Webinar if all you do is just repost the whole thing on Linkedin. So it's it's an easy cop outlook, we shared a piece of content. Here's the Webinar. Versus, if I go hey, there's a forty five second clip in here that speaks to some specific problem our customers are having and we just focused on that little bit. We're going to add value. We're not. We're no longer just promoting the Webinar, which is a frustration you and...

I both feel, and it you start to see how this obviously repurposing content becomes highly valuable. But knowing the content man like it takes time to write. Yeah, and I think even going back to the mindset shift piece of it like that really is the core foundation. And and a huge part of that is you aren't doing the Webin are for the Webin are sake, HMM, as a team. You're doing the Webin are so that you can cut it up and share it and have content that you can put emails and reach out to customers about. And you know what I mean. That's that's why you're doing it. You have a hundred people show up, that's awesome. Yeah, but that's a hundred people. And so if in what companies end up doing is I say, okay, sweet, next shot, especially in the monthly cadence of that. It's awesome, we got a hundred next month. Can we get a hundred and ten or a hundred and twenty? But you're only focused on that singular thing and so you're constantly having to come up with new ideas, new ways, new how to. It's only on that. At the same time, you have another probably if it's a larger or you have another group or a person that's focused on the blog and they're trying to do the same thing in the blog. You have another group people focused on the podcast and trying to do the same thing on the podcast. Yep, when they're all trying to do the exact same thing, hit the exact same topics and reach the exact same audience through different mediums, but they're all just churning, churning, turning, churning versus working together and trying to create a cohesive, actual system to make it work. Yeah, when I think of our like distribution plans, there's a couple projects a year where I think we operate at a very high level. We do it what you're saying because, like the stakes are raised. So of course we're going to do it. This is a no brainer project to do it on. But it's when we get to like that monthly cadence where it almost feels easier to pump out new content consistently because all you just worry about that over there you just were about, and it feels to me this might not be everybody situation, but like that's we lack some of the strategy where there could be. Hey,...

...focus lesson just create new stuff, focus more on how do we distribute this and get maximum return for the efforts here. You provide context around how you think about all this in a framework kind of like three pillars. So we have a cornerstone, core and cut content. Break that down for US Justin to give us that how you're thinking about it. Yeah, so I call it the the C method, and really what it is it's trying to group your content. And again there's nuance to all this. So but of course, in at least it as as a base level, group your content and to both a timing and a size and importance kind of level. So cornerstone content at the top of the pyramid, this is the stuff you should be creating at least, probably once a year, bare minimum twice a year. Great, every quarter even better. This. These are the digital events, these are the original research pieces, these are the big, you know, core things that you have going out, cornerstone things that you have going out every every single quarter or beyond. These are the things that every if you do it right, every single thing you do for that quarter or that half could come off of it. okayretically, so even on a personal level. So like for me, if you go Super Meta, my course is cornerstone content every I can create blogs, I can create videos, I can create I could have a Webinar, I could have a series, I could have so much stuff that comes off of the information inside that course, and so that's kind of how and then from there you can eat and that stuff would be kind of the core content. So if you have, if you plan...

...out a piece of original research, something that could come off of that would be very clearly a blog post that might talk about it. So you have a written format, you might do a podcast episode where you go over some of the interesting ideas around that particular data set and what you have and the report, and so that's kind of your core level. Is the things that the initial things that really drive a typical content strategy, Lebon ours event, you know, smaller events, smaller blog posts and stuff like that, and then underneath that as the cut content, and so that is, at its base level, social content. I think it could be pulled for like email newsletters or email content as well, youtube shorts, Tick Tock, any of those type of things where you're pulling and you're just taking this corner stone and core level content and bringing it down to a level where people don't even need to know that those other things exist to see the content. HMM. Okay, so maybe walks are an example. You kind of gave us a little Meta example there for a second, but is there a cornerstone piece right now that comes to mind that you could show us how that breaks down into core and cut content for you? Sure, absolutely so. A good example. We did this with our digital event demand last fall for METADATA. So we had a digital event. Typically, what most people do when they have a digital event is they push at sort of like we're talking about, with like a monthly Webinar, and you can see where this really like. It fits. It just fits regardless of what you're doing. But typically, when people have a digital event. They spend all this time, effort, energy, months. I know because we've worked on them month. I Live Wanning, getting speakers, getting, you know, all this stuff figured out. They have the event, it's awesome, everybody feels great, event ends, that...

...content is no longer good. They don't even think. It's not even content, it's just a event. It's done and so and then they send out the recordings after word, like or House Amana on a landing page. Why do we do it? Really, that's typically what happens, but we're all we do that. What we did at Metadata was say I saw it as a an amazing opportunity to take this. We had twelve sessions that were tied like directly into like be to be, into our market, bb marketing, like content we knew people wanted and would be interested in. And so what we did was we took that content and planned out, literally before we even had the event, I had all the content planned out into January what was going to launch and how it was going to launch and where it was going to launch and really just having a plan to be able to cut that up. And so for us we decided, hey, we're going to post we're going to get out of each video, because that's what they were. They were sessions, but at the core of their medium there were videos, and it was like, okay, we're going to get cornerstone, maybe even a session, and then we're going to get out of that session. We're going to we're going to be able to have written content, we're going to take the top highlights out of that section and we're going to be able to put it on there so that people can read it and read through it if they want to. Traditionally maybe people would do a blog post. We just thought that was going to be a more consumable way to do it and then from there, and then from there we're going to take and literally I watched probably thousands of hours worth of these sessions. I could probably repeat them before they even launched at certain points because I had watched them so much, because I was pulling the clips and I was pulling the best clips out of those posts. It's not glamorous work by any means, but it's better too. I feel like it's going to be better if you do it in house and if you off shoot it, because you know your audience best, and so cut those up into social videos and then also made longer cut so if we expanded...

...on a topic, made longer cuts and put those videos out on Youtube to where somebody wouldn't have to necessarily watch the forty minute session or the twenty minute session to get a good chunk of information there and and then we'd literally would drip those out, the social videos, the youtube videos, every single week, multiple times a week, for four months. And we're still putting that content out and recycling it and putting it back into our onto social. This is a hit, a non beat of B example. But one thing I have paid a lot of attention to because I love sports, is ESPN, over time, has totally learned this model where now, once I say this, you won't be able to UNSEE it, but watch the stuff that they share. They are so good now at baking in old clips, things that are memorable from like years back in sports, and they never used to do it. It always used to be what's the event that's happening today that everybody's thinking about, and now they're going we have an archive that is justin you and I would kill for that amount of plant that they can post for infinity right, but they're like strategically going back and just say, Oh no, people would love to watch that play again. And I love how you're breaking that down, because you're right, four months of content sitting there and I can think of all sorts of events from the last ten years where we could have use that in marketing and we didn't. We literally let it die as soon as that event was passed. Yeah, it's it felt silly to me and a lot of it like literally silly not to do it, like foolish not to do it. So but some people feel silly and foolish for doing it. That's like one of the hurdles. Yeah, I think it's intra that's when you're internally focusing and I externally focus if I'm focused on my audience, my audience, as long as the content is still relevant, solid, beneficial, useful. You know, we had Dave gearhart on as a speaker.

We had kyle like, if they say something useful on October, why is that not useful in March, like, why is that not useful in July? That is still awesome. You know, unless it's like talking about a current event or or something happening, the advice is probably going to be beneficial, especially in marketing, for I mean six months minium. Yeah, wow. Okay. So, as we start to wrap this this up, any sort of just challenge you would give us sort of on a practical how do we go out and do this? Is it identify a corner stone piece, like where would you tell people to sort of take action? which we're all going to be in different places. So you don't have to make a blanket statement. I'll take that out, but like you get what I'm saying. Yeah, yeah, no, I think. Yeah, everybody's in a different spot. I think to start it's pause and assess. So basically what I did when I started at meditate it. You can do this if you you know, I would almost advised doing this every quarter. You know, pause where you're at, look at what you got going out, look at your content calendar, quote unquote, or whatever you have kind of you're publishing schedule, and just ask the question, are we getting the most out of this content? The question the answers probably know, and so then you start to ask more questions. Okay, what is it? What does it mean to get the most out of this content? And then just plan that out and then, yeah, so and then the next quae. Okay, what channels are we active on? Do we have a newsletter? Do we have a social channel that we're active on? Do we have a couple? And then think about how you can maximize those pieces throughout that. So okay, cool, we do have a newsletter. All right. Well, let's mention this piece of content and our next newsletter. Okay, we are. We're active on twitter. Okay, cool. While then we should be talking, we should be putting a thread that lists everything out from this, you know, the two or three things out of this Webinar we should put the can...

...we create twitter threats out of those, or can we create linkedin posts and then, and then just give it a number. I think that's the other thing that people get hung up on is like repurposing unlimited amounts of content. I could get unlimited amounts of content out of this blog, Yep, but what if you just boxed it to five? What what if you got five linkedin post out of that blog post? Because once you get five, you might say I could squeeze to more out, and then you write the two more, but at least gives you a goal to say we're going to get five out of each of these blog posts and then maybe you can make a note and say, like, and there's a lot in here. I could probably get double that, but you know, just set yourself a number there, because otherwise it's like it's too overwhelming to look at a blog and say, like, what are all the what are all the content piece I get out of here? So and then just set a number and figure it out. So, yeah, just reassess your situation, kind of audit your content, figure out what's a working at us, honestly, for a super, super easy first level. Start what is your best content? What's your bet? What's your like number one bet? It could be a blog, it could be a podcast episode, like what is the piece of content that resonates with your audience? And then figure out how to remix and recut that one piece of content for your audience. That's what I was suggest doing, because then you're going to get the bug and you're going to do it for everything. Yeah, starting there with what's best is is definitely going to give you highest Roi. And then, for sure, when there's like that thing, I guess we could repurpose this, but you've already seen it work, so you got the results. Okay, I love the question. What does it mean to get the most out of this content as well? So I think that's something I'm walking away with. The practical remix. What's best? Give it a number, as you just said, and then earlier just to kind of Ping this back at the end so that everybody remembers we're talking about breaking it down and Justin said, to know the content in think through like what can I get out of this and those subtopics. I love that as well, just going making a list right from the beginning subtopics, and then where...

...is this actually getting distributed? What channels? So so much here that people can go back to. But you also have obviously far more content around repurposing that you've already created Justin so tell us where we can connect with you metadata and also the course and things on repurposing as well. Yeah, absolutely. So I would say if you're interested in learning more about kind of be to be marketing and paid ads and kind of the future of of where be tob is headed, I would definitely say follow metadata. That's my metadata plug. You can follow me on Linkedin as well, and I'm posting there regularly every single week. About content marketing, content repurposing and trying to get help people get the most out of their content. And then, yeah, if you're interested in actually figuring out how to put together a plan and really set this up for your company, especially if you're on smaller teams, these super helpful is. I did put together a course content repurposing road map and you can find it at content repurposing road Mapcom and everything's laid out there. You can actually try it for free if you're interested. There's a section in there to where you can preview one of the lessons, to get one of the spreadsheets and kind of start to audit and pull your stuff out for yourself. But Yeah, love Adjustin. Thanks for spending time here with us on B Tob Growth. It's been an honor to have you here. Awesome. Thanks, beggie. Well, we're having conversations like this all the time on BB growth helping fuel your growth, your innovation. So if you aren't subscribed to the show, we would love for you to do that on whatever your favorite podcast platform is, and you can connect with me on Linkedin as well. I'm always talking about business marketing life over there and would love to hear from you so just search Benjie Block on Linkedin. Keep doing work that matters. Will be back rous soon with another episode of BB growth. Cheers.

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