Content Marketing Lessons from the Greatest Content Marketer Who Ever Lived

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Greatest Content Marketer

Imagine this…

When he’s around 30, a man from a small town decides to turn his back on the family business and strike out on his own. He wants to follow his passion and help teach people how to live better lives.

The odds are stacked against him.

Nobody knows who he is. He has no network, no budget, and no platform.

Basically, he’s a nobody.

Well, by the time everything was said and done, this “nobody” had grown in size and influence and his message spread across the world like wildfires in California. He went from an obscure nobody struggling to promote a message, to influencing more than 2 billion people—almost a third of the global population.

I’m going to pull the curtain back on the most successful content marketer who ever lived… break down the strategy behind his success so you can use it to get people to notice you. So you can become an authority in your industry, spread your message, influence thousands, and compete online with the big boys.

Sound like a plan? Then let’s go…

The biggest content marketing problem facing marketers

Everybody online wants to attract attention. You daydream about more traffic. You fantasize about going viral.

Reality is…

…the Internet has changed how people buy.

The global economic recession and technological innovation have combined to permanently alter how buyers interact with brands.

There’s too much information and too little time. Don’t believe me?

  • Contently compiled data revealing that there are 1.6 million blogs, 140 million Tweets, 2 million videos, 5 million images, and 1.5 billion Facebook content posts/status updates/comments created every day.
  • Every 24 hours 60,000 new websites launch online.
  • A weekly edition of the New York Times includes more information than the average person in 17th Century England was liable to come across during an entire lifetime.
  • The average person produces six newspapers worth of information every day. From the beginning of the world until 2003, there were five exabytes of information created. Now we create five exabytes every 48 hours.

So what does all of this have to do with you?

Think about it…

If you want to succeed online, somehow you’re going to have to cut through the noise to get the attention of your audience.

It’s only natural that most people seek help separating the wheat from the chaff. With so many things vying for our attention, how do people decide if they’ll do business with a particular brand?

Most people use their laptop, mobile phone, or some other device to start learning about a product or service. They seek out social proof and recommendations from people they trust. Maybe that’s why 70% of Americans now say they look at product reviews before making a purchase. In other words, they look for information and then they go with who they know and trust.

Do you know what the biggest problem facing online marketers is?

Obscurity. 

Your marketing message is a tree falling in the forest and nobody is around to notice.

Nobody knows who you are. They’ve never heard of you or your product. And since they’ve never heard of you, they don’t trust you.

So how do you get them to notice you and earn their trust?

Easy, content marketing.

The Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing as “creating or distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience with the objective of driving profitable customer action.

Pay close attention to the definition. Generic content is isn’t valuable. If the content you share is dull as dishwater you won’t engage your audience. You have to be relevant. What’s relevant? When someone is online looking for information, everything that’s not what they need at that exact moment is irrelevant.

To be effective at content marketing you’ll have to cut through the ‘noise’ and engage with your customer.

It all comes down to this…

Why It’s Essential to Be an Online Authority 

You can fast-track your online business by becoming the authority in your industry.

In today’s marketing environment you need people to know, like, and trust you to be successful. That’s much easier if you’re viewed as a trusted resource and not a relentless pitchman (There is a time for sales and it’s after you’ve established a relationship with your audience.).

How can you go from an unknown to someone viewed as an authority? How do you gain this coveted authority?

You establish authority by using content marketing. Content is the best way to get people to know, like, and trust your brand. Remember, valuable content is the foundation of content marketing and online lead generation.

One more thing about authority: Remember the young man from the small town? His name was Jesus and he’s considered the founder of the world’s largest religion. 78.5 million copies of his book are distributed globally per year.

No matter your religious views his influence is indisputable and the message he was promoting quickly spread around the world. He became an authority by using content marketing. And you can too.

Let me show you exactly how this works…

7 Ways You Can Build Online Authority like Jesus

So how can you go from an unknown to someone viewed as an authority?

1. Deliver value first…for free 

Historians and scholars estimate that Jesus gave hundreds of “keynote” speeches and performed 35 or 36 miracles during his short ministry. Aside from teaching, he was involved with healing the sick and feeding large crowds. There’s no record of him accepting any payment. If you want to build trust with your audience, give them your best content. When people get great results with your free material, it goes a long way towards strengthening your relationship.

2. Focus on the message and the audience more than yourself 

Jesus made Peter the leader of the Christian church for a reason. He was more focused on spreading his message than gaining fame. Remember it’s more about the message and solving people’s problems than it is about you. Uplift and promote other people without worrying about what they can do in return.

3. Find some disciples 

Can you imagine Jesus walking from village to village by himself trying to challenge traditional beliefs? Of course not. First, he promoted his message to a few individuals. Once he’d established influence within this small group they decided to help him reach more people. His influence within a small group grew into influence within the general society through powerful word-of-mouth exposure. Stop trying to market on your own. Instead, get people to help you spread your message.

4. Leverage the power of story and metaphor 

Jesus taught through parables and allegories. Part of what made his message compelling and memorable was that he was teaching in a way that people could relate to. Everyone’s heard the stories of the Prodigal Son and the Good Samaritan. Learn from this and use stories and metaphors to make complex ideas memorable and easy to understand.

5. Demonstrate your expertise 

You can’t just proclaim yourself an authority. Others must recognize you as an expert. Share your expertise by teaching and answering questions. One of the best ways to learn something is to teach it to someone else.  The great part about this tactic is that not only will people consider you an authority, but if you’re constantly answering questions and publishing content on a specific topic, eventually the search engines will recognize you as an authority too.

6. Be accessible 

If you want to establish authority online, go into the marketplace and interact with the people. This will help you engage and understand your audience. That’s why Jesus went where the people were. Don’t stay cooped up in your ivory tower like the Pharisees. Instead, get to know your audience. Find out their hopes and fears.

7. Don’t be afraid to challenge the status quo 

Sometimes you may have to go against the establishment. Don’t be afraid because you can gain attention through controversial behavior. Your new views will demand attention.

The bottom line

Content marketing can help you cut through the clutter and connect with your customer. To solve the biggest problem facing content marketers you need to create content that stands out. When you are helpful, entertaining, authentic, and consistent, people will grant you authority status because you have helped them with their problems. You’ve demonstrated your expertise. You’ve answered their questions. You’ve been around long enough for them to trust you.

Over to you…

Question: What are you doing to establish authority in your niche?

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9 comments

  1. Danny Brown

    You’re forgetting one key point – the content marketer was already “famous”, as his birth had been predicted, wise men tracked his parents down to give him gifts, angels proclaimed him a saviour for all people, Herod decreed a rule that all boys less than two be murdered to try and stop this content marketer from becoming a man, and so on (depending on what gospel you read).
    I’m not even religious, but these little (and well-known) basic “facts” kinda negate the “struck out at 30 as an unknown” statement. And let’s face it, this post is a bit of a stretch to start with. But, that’s just a personal opinion and I’m sure your target audience will disagree.

  2. Danny Brown

    You’re forgetting one key point – the content marketer was already “famous”, as his birth had been predicted, wise men tracked his parents down to give him gifts, angels proclaimed him a saviour for all people, Herod decreed a rule that all boys less than two be murdered to try and stop this content marketer from becoming a man, and so on (depending on what gospel you read).
    I’m not even religious, but these little (and well-known) basic “facts” seem to negate the “struck out at 30 as an unknown” premise, no?

  3. Anthony Sills

    Danny, thanks for reading! 
    All of what you say is correct, however, during his time most people did not believe that Jesus was the same individual spoken about in those stories. They also doubted his teachings and his credibility. So in terms of establishing his platform, attracting followers, and spreading his message he was in fact, “an unknown” entity.
    In fact, even in areas where he was known–such as his hometown of Nazareth–people largely refused to listen to him.  You could compare this to someone who is known in their profession, or day job, but unknown as a marketer online. Although they’re not strictly “unknown”, they don’t have any clout in their new field. In both cases, creating or distributing relevant and valuable content to attract  and engage is a great way to build authority.
    BTW, hopefully even if you’re not “religious” I hope the greater lessons here are helpful to you!

  4. Douglas Idugboe

    Danny Brown Anthony explained it clearer in his reply to your comment. I’d akin this to a local professional that’s great at what she does but needs to spread message farther.

  5. HotelDesigns

    Nice post. Reminds me of some basics I was forgetting, and need to add back in, for my audience on http://www.HotelDesigns.net. Thank you

  6. Anthony Sills

    HotelDesigns  I’m glad you found it helpful. I see that you’re already working to establish authority in your niche through your “Ask and Expert” section. How’s that working for you so far?

  7. HotelDesigns

    Anthony Sills HotelDesigns It doesn’t work. We have a few that use it but rarely

  8. Chaddrbox

    Excellent post. So it’s Jesus who is the universe’s greatest content marketer. Didn’t see that coming but boy is it true. The trick is now to stand out above all the other big time influencers in your general niche. That can get tricky. My advice is to not be afraid to share your views even if they can be a bit controversial. You never know, that can attract just the right persons’ attention.

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