How to Get Started with Tangential Content Marketing
What is tangential content? It is content on a topic that’s indirectly related to your brand’s niche. An apparel retailer offering personal grooming content, and a travel luggage maker creating curated lists of ‘The Top 10 places to Visit’ – these are examples of tangential content.
In an era where content marketing is becoming increasingly fluidic, and publishers becoming increasingly willing to experiment with ideas, tangential content has a lot of scope. Also, for brands that have failed at inciting some activity with their traditional sales and promotions focused content, tangential content marketing is another shot at making ‘content marketing’ work for them. Let’s talk more on how you can get started on content marketing.
Why Consider Investing Resources In Tangential Content?
Here are 5 stellar reasons for you to consider tangential content marketing for your brand:
- Increase Your Appeal: With a tangential content campaign, you can significantly expand the reach of your brand.
- Top of the Sales Funnel Activity: If you’ve seldom enjoyed any bustling activity on your sales-y content posts, tangential topics can come to the rescue.
- Better Link Building and Outreach: With tangential content, you can reach out to publishers from a wide market, and get more backlinks.
- Appeal to Audience’s Emotions: Content marketing campaign studies show that content that appeals to emotions enjoys more engagement and media mentions than other content; tangential content is your license to attempt to do the same.
- Unfetter Your Content: Any brand can quickly run out of ideas if the content is solely focused on its business niche and products; tangential content helps you open up and keep your content campaigns fresh.
How to Begin With Tangential Content?
Tangential content can be tricky; that’s because your content might never nudge your brand’s core theme at all, or might even confuse your social followers. To choose themes intelligently, trust these methods.
- Target Specific Buyer Persons: Instead of creating a list of content themes relevant to your brand, identify your most valuable user persons and see what kind of content would appeal to them.
- Trending News: Ask your content team to keep a strong watch on trending topics from the news world, to identify opportunities to latch on to a theme that’s likely to resonate with audiences. Here’s a comprehensive list of sources to locate trendy content ideas.
- Test if Unsure: Social media offers a great platform to test the waters of tangential content; you can create short content pieces across several indirectly related themes, and gauge which gets the most engagement.
- Use Mind Maps: When at a loss of ideas, leverage mind-mapping techniques. Write the core idea at the center of a blank page, and start extending related ideas in all directions. Use images, curved lines, branches, and colors to make your mind map more exciting, and to keep the brain aligned with the idea of being ‘divergent’ and ‘creative’.
Note: Remember, while working on tangential content, it can be easy enough for your content team to lose sight of the brand’s tone, its content goals, and its social image. Make sure your choice of content themes is easy enough for you to link back to your brand.
Lessons from Success Stories
To best understand how you can embark on a tangential content adventure, here are some success stories to study.
Adventurous Content That Skirts Around Controversy Without Inciting It
Abodo, an apartment search service, got more than 67,000 social shares for a sponsored content piece titled ‘Here’s which state posts the nastiest tweets.’ Lessons to learn:
- Present data; don’t take a stance
- Present multiple dimensions to the story
- State your sources
- Be very accurate with data
This content was tangentially relevant to Abodo’s niche, as the market for apartment search also entails understanding more about local communities.
Target a Multitude of Related Groups
Busbud, an intercity bus ticket price comparison service in the US, published a piece called ‘This US Map Reveals the Most Instagrammed Locations in Each Stage’ and gained tremendous social media traction, with the post getting 40,000+ shares. Lessons:
- Regional egos are a great theme to create content that can be targeted at geographically differentiated groups.
- The inclusion of ‘Instagram’ aspect of the story helped in targeting Instagram users, in particular, bringing focus to the tangential content.
- Appealing to the audience’s sense of wanderlust, the content also initiated top of the sales funnel action for the brand.
Content teams create content for their bosses, and not the audience – that’s a sad reality for many brands. Tangential marketing, however, can help them take another shot at connecting with a larger audience. Moving the focus away from sales and promotions to expanding the mouth of your content funnel could just be the pivot your content marketing needs.