You may have learned and forgotten about the 4 P’s in a marketing class long ago. But the 4 P’s is a useful framework in the digital marketing world, particularly for content marketers. This week, we introduce the second of four P’s, “Place.”

The 4 P’s for Content Marketers in the Digital Age: Place

Going back to our example from last week, let’s say you are a B2B content marketer for a SaaS company that sells an analytics tool to marketers. You’ve established that your “Product” is your content and you’ve detailed use cases on how, when, and why customers will read your content. Now it is time to figure out “Place.”

Place

In the world of content, “Place” means distribution. In other words, where will your content live? MindTools has some helpful questions to get us started establishing the “Place” for our content:

Where do buyers look for your content?

Where people look for content varies depending on why they are looking for content in the first place. We must return to our foundation of  7 use cases for content consumption. For the sake of defining “Place” (distribution), we can distill these 7 use cases into 3 overarching reasons people consume content:

  1. Seeking a specific piece of information: When people are looking for something specific, they generally turn to a search engine. Thus, an important part of your “Place” strategy is to conduct careful keyword research and fulfill a missing niche of information where there is high search volume but limited relevant content.
  2. Content shared by a trusted source: People often watch videos they wouldn’t otherwise watch or read articles they wouldn’t otherwise read simply because of who shared it with them. Thus, distributing quality content through social channels is a critical component of your “Place” strategy. When measuring the value of social engagement, “shares” should be weighted more heavily than “likes”.
  3. Discovery of new ideas, news and trends: Where does your audience go to discover new ideas and trends? In our example of our B2B SaaS company, the audience likely turns to industry news sites and events. Thus, we should bake guest blogging, webinars, and speaking engagements into our distribution recipe.

What do your competitors do, and how can you learn from that and/or differentiate?

Wherever you aren’t, you can assume that competitors probably are. Potential customers are consuming content from your competitors. So it is important to cover all the same bases as your competition. At the same time, you must provide value that your audience cannot get from anywhere else.

There is a lot you can do with the content itself (product) to differentiate from the competition. But in terms of distribution, you can also differentiate. Set aside a percentage of your budget and resources to testing new distribution channels. Perhaps as a B2B marketer, you might not think to distribute content on Pinterest or use Snapchat as a means to communicate with potential customers. But if you aren’t thinking to do it, that means your competition isn’t either. Maybe it is worth testing?

Putting content distribution in it’s “Place”

  • As a content marketer, distribution equates to “Place” within the 4 P’s framework.
  • Planning where to distribute content should be based on your use cases of when and why people consume your content in the first place.
  • Don’t be afraid to test unusual distribution channels within a small segment of your overall plan. You might find captive audiences in unlikely places outside the reach of competitors’ content.

Stay tuned next week for our post on Price. You can also check out our posts on Product and Promotion.


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