Letting Users Do All the Work for You – Free

You don't always need to spend time and money on content.
You don’t always need to spend time and money on content.

A digital content strategy – managing your website, blog, social media – is imperative as we head into 2015. But as its importance escalates in our increasingly virtual world, our budget and free time do not. The biggest trick this year for managing your content online sounds sneaky but is actually a pretty easy and mundane way to get more done: Let other people do the work for you. Here are three tips that explain what we’re talking about (trust us, you’re not breaking any labor laws here): Round-ups. On a lazy day, it doesn’t hurt to simply round up topical content from other places (with credit, of course). That’s because readers actually love round-ups, especially when it comes to lists or snippets from eclectic, opinionated posts on Facebook and Twitter. Here’s the biggest snag you want to watch out for: If too much of your content is sourced from other websites, that’s not necessarily great for SEO. Citing quotes as images (or, for example, embedded tweets) can help you keep a smart balance of original to Internet-redundant copy in a round-up entry. Guest bloggers. Like round-ups, guest writers should be used sparingly. But it can keep your platform fresh to welcome new voices, especially from experts. Many professionals are happy to write small entries for the exposure and the links to their own websites and social media accounts. So you’re not paying them in cash, but they’re actually happy about it. C’mon, it’s a win-win situation! Comments. “Do not read the comments,” a popular Web adage goes. That’s where trolls lurk and arguments between total strangers spiral into vortexes of ridiculousness. However, this is also where your readers are able to share their own voices and interact with you. And more importantly, getting involved in a conversation gets visitors coming back to your page repeatedly, driving traffic. It’s important to have an open and carefully moderated comments section on your website or blog. If you can curate a space for thoughtful discussion pursuant to your business, it gets your audience talking about and, better yet, with you. And, of course, they are creating fresh content that might be of interest to your readership – free.

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