5 Affordable Content Marketing Solutions You Need to Try

“You should really try content marketing.” — someone you know

As a small business owner, how often have you heard that advice?

Businesses know they’re missing out on huge opportunities as they sit and watch the content marketing game from the sidelines, but doubts and fears hold them back:

  • Content marketing is going to cost me a lot;
  • I don’t have time to do content marketing;
  • Where would I even start?

It’s true — to really succeed at content marketing and create a high-ROI/lead-generating machine, it’s going to take time, resources and a decent amount of persistence. But that doesn’t mean it’s necessarily difficult to get started.

The key to content marketing is momentum. Once you start generating content and turn it into a repeatable task, it becomes easy to find success.

There are a number of easy content marketing solutions for small businesses — especially for those who don’t know where to start. They’re not expensive, and done well, they’re quite effective.

Content Marketing Solutions for Small Businesses

Before you decide which content marketing solution is right for your business, it is important you consider three goals:

  • Find content channels with large communities you can leverage;
  • Make sure you’re speaking to your audience and answering the right questions;
  • Figure out how to make things easier on yourself — work smarter.

Given the content you produce is appropriate and well-received, content channels with built-in audiences do a lot of the heavy lifting for you. You won’t need to hunt people down to gain impressions. However, if your key audience (i.e. your customers) doesn’t use that content channel, your hard work is all for not.

Keep user personas in mind and you’ll walk the right path.

1. Medium


Launched in 2012 by Twitter co-founder, Evan Williams, Medium was originally designed as a way to publish content longer than 140-character limit on Twitter. It has since evolved into a platform of its own with similarities to Twitter, Reddit and Tumblr in how you’re able to recommend, share, up-vote, down-vote and theme posts.

A smart strategy is to repurpose blog posts you’ve already written and put them on Medium, or write content specifically for Medium. This works especially well for small business owners looking to get their content in front of a large audience without building one from the ground up.

A well-written, well-tagged piece will gain popularity —  ideally Medium’s site editors will feature it.

2. YouTube


When you think of something “going viral,” you think of YouTube videos. We’re quick to share engaging videos we’ve seen online, and you should tap into this behavior when producing video content.

Sometimes video is better received by your customers than a blog post, or perhaps your product is better shown to your customer rather than explained in writing. In these cases, a robust YouTube channel with lots of great content is your best solution.

Unfortunately, great videos can still go unseen. YouTube is the second largest search engine, and must still be treated as such. This means SEO is in play — necessitating keyword driven titles, descriptions and tags among other factors.

However, as you build your YouTube channel, don’t neglect your website and search engines. Leverage your videos further by turning them into quick blog posts — generating important new content for your site.

3. SlideShare


Referred to as the quiet giant of content marketing, SlideShare is another great channel through which you can repurpose blog posts or share presentations. It was purchased by LinkedIn back in 2012, and is now a large resource for statistics, interesting facts and inspiration.

Of course, there are ways to optimize your Slide decks, and following best practices will give you the best chance for success.

If you have marketing or sales decks you often show clients, you’re already ahead of the game. You can post these on SlideShare with little editing as ready-made content.

4. iTunes Podcast


Perhaps your customers prefer audio content — you’ll have a better chance of educating and telling your brand story through podcasts.

While iTunes is one of the largest podcast marketplaces, there certainly a number of different places in which you can publish your content — such as the Google Play Store — and it may be worth publishing on multiple platforms.

Consider developing a regular weekly series to discuss your content pieces in more depth. Or, use it in the same way you would a blog and cover a valuable topic each podcast.

If you need an inexpensive (free) way to record your content, use your smartphone. Most phones come equipped with decent audio recording capabilities. Just make sure to listen to your content for sound quality.

5. Facebook Promoted Posts


Many small business owners shy away from paid advertising for fear of spending too much money. However a small-scale Facebook campaign promoting your content can actually be very cost effective — costs-per-click are typically much lower on Facebook than other paid channels.

Target the promoted posts to your customers (based on interests, occupation or geography), and they tend to outperform regular Facebook ads. This is because you’re offering valuable information to readers who are likely interested in your topics, and not just pushing your product.

To start, try it out with some of your best performing content. Make sure new readers are given a next step (a clear CTA) or shown related posts after reading the blog post — this will give them incentive to dig deeper into your site and build a relationship with your content.

This strategy works particularly well for companies with a small following who need to reach a wider audience. Sometimes you need an extra boost in the beginning stages before you let your content speak for itself.

Make Your Life Easier

You don’t want to create more work than necessary, and making sure each blog post and social message goes out at the correct time can consume much of your week.

Make your life easier by using a content scheduler to manage your calendar. Produce your blog posts and social media messages well in advance of their publish date, schedule them to post and sit back as all your hard work is released to the world at the perfect moment — well, don’t sit back, go create more content with your extra time!

At Facet, we use CoSchedule. It not only helps us manage content publishing, but it allows us to stay organized and keep tabs on when our content calendar is getting a bit light.

A Note About Quality

For any of these solutions, nothing beats high-quality content. Whether you’re producing a video, podcast or blog post, make sure your content is well-researched and well-produced.

It is not easy or quick to produce outstanding content in these formats, but it is important to put something out there and start somewhere.

Why is Content Marketing Important?

Content is King — as the saying goes, but why?

When we look at the marketing landscape and its shift toward Inbound Marketing over the last few years, it’s quickly apparent why digital content is so important.

Search engines empower consumers to seek out information before making every decision — where to go for lunch, which doctor to visit, where to get a car fixed or which phone to buy. Mobile devices allow us to search for a solution to any problem, from anywhere at any time, and Google data shows we do just that.


Think about it: we use our phones to search for where we buy our next phone.

With so many questions in need of answers and problems in need of solutions, we must ensure our products, services and brands show up as the best solution in our respective industries. The easiest way to do that? Develop high-quality content.

Keep Your Site Alive

Beyond answering the right questions for potential customers and site visitors (which should always be our number one focus), there are technical advantages to consistent content development.

As part of determining which web pages rank higher than others in search results, Google uses bots — called spiders — to index, or crawl the internet regularly. Spiders strive to interpret each page on the web, learn what it is about, and determine whether or not its information is valuable for searchers. The more information you give spiders, the better they understand your website.

Spiders also take note of how often sites are updated and nurtured. A site in which new content is published is understood to be alive and well. A site in which there is little-to-no change in content after many crawls, must not be important — Google will likely rank this website lower, and show it in search results less often.

Some Content is Better Than No Content

At the bare minimum, Google wants to make sure your website is up to date and relevant before serving it to searchers.

The simplest way to ensure a regular stream of new content on your site is to add a blog — there’s a reason why it’s the starting place for most content marketers and why many of our solutions revolve around blog posts.

However, creating the blog is only the first step and real value comes with a consistent posting schedule. If you’re a small business owner without a lot of free time to sit there and crank out 3 blog posts per week, that’s ok.

Dedicate a small portion of each week to content development, and commit to finishing a piece of content every other week, or once a month.

With this strategy, you likely aren’t posting often enough to build a large reader base (unless your content is amazing), but that might not be necessary. Your biggest outcomes here will be consistent signals sent to Google, and an increase in valuable content for your customers — both of which are great results when compared to no content strategy at all.

If you do have the time and resources to develop multiple pieces quickly, it is in your best interest to create a rich backlog of content and space out publishing with content schedulers — perhaps you have enough to post twice per week. Don’t post them all right away, be strategic in your efforts and you’ll thank yourself later.

The More You Create, The Easier It Gets

As with anything, mastery comes through consistent practice. The more content you develop, the easier it will get — both in creation and distribution. We mentioned at the start the key to content marketing is in gaining momentum, and it’s worth repeating.

Many content marketers fail because they give up after early efforts don’t quite pan out.

Content marketing is a lot of work and it is possible you’ll want an expert in your corner to help guide your strategy. Even so, remember you’re playing the long-game — it could take some time before your efforts bare fruit. But once they do, it’s all worth it, and better yet, it’s sustainable.