“Content is King.” How many times have you heard it?
It’s paraded around like a map to the holy grail, like some sacred piece of advice that will make all the bricks fall together and reveal the yellow brick road. It’s advice from the wizard, don’t you think? The man behind the curtain spouts out some vague yet wise sounding command and you nod your head, not wanting to say “But I don’t understand, my content is great and yet...yet, something is wrong. Something isn’t bringing people to read it.”
You accept this advice too easily
Instead of questioning this advice you go back to your laptops and you try harder. You fuss with your Joomla template. You try to make that piece of content the best it can be. You finesse the headline so people can’t help but click on it and you spend hours upgrading images to be ‘pinable.’ But after all that, you still don’t see any improvement. It’s not the content. Your content is good. It’s wonderful even. It’s useful and it teaches people or entertains them or makes them feel inspired. And yet still. There is no King on the throne. So what is King then?
If it’s not content then what? Consider your platform...
plat·form /ˈplatfôrm/ noun
- 1. A raised level surface on which people or things can stand.
- 2. A raised floor or stage used by public speakers or performers so thatthey can be seen by their audience
Start thinking of your Platform
Now, I’m not just talking about your Joomla template and your website but rather what you stand on when you put your content out there. What is going to get you seen by your audience? Your content might as well be sitting at the bottom of a pit if you aren’t making any effort in elevating it to your audience. I hear you saying “ok, but if it’s not my content and it’s not my website... then what exactly is my platform?” Well, it’s all of the ways your content can be put ‘out there.’ All of the ways you can elevate your performance so it can be seen.
What lifts your content up, higher than your neighbors and drags it out of that pit? Is it twitter? Is it your facebook page? Your SEO? Pinterest? Affiliations with other sites? There are many facets to an outstanding platform but the best part about social networking platforms apart from SEO platforms or content curation platforms is that you really have unlimited possibilities when it comes to having your stuff shared.
If you have allies out there, who are willing to shoot you a RT, a like or a +1 because they believe in you and consider you a friend then you’re doing something right. And those types of relationships take time to build and nurture. Don’t sign up for every single network that pops out of the blue. Instead, build your platform with an intentional hand. Connect with people. Bring them to your side and be on theirs. When it comes to your platform you’re looking to build it with steel and bolts. You want quality and strength. Not only do you need to put your content out to your platform but you also need your platform to put it out to theirs. "You need allies out there son, it’s a war and one that can’t be fought alone". It’s a good idea to review your Joomla extensions to make sure you’ve got things set up for easy sharing.
Broaden your Platform and You'll see Results
Check out the Easy Social Icons extension and consider some SEO training. Set your platform on a strong foundation. If you’re looking to add site affiliations to your repertoire, make a list of places that will showcase you. Submit your work to online magazines or rss aggregators. Once you’ve built and raised a platform you’ll see your content start to gain traction. You’ll see shares here and there and you’ll find your audience. An audience who will read and appreciate all that content you worked so hard to generate. And then they will share it too. Creating a platform takes time but it is pretty straight forward. Instead of a yellow brick road, look to the golden rule and set members of your network on their rightful throne.
By Heather Eigler