How could an episodic content strategy benefit your business?
If you have a consistent, driven approach to creating content, then you’re likely seeing results, in many shapes and forms, build steadily over time.
But if you have no strategy at all, or if your approach is to create content only when you’re inspired, that’s a bit like throwing your content against the wall and hoping it sticks…
If you want to…
- Build a business and brand
- Get your product or service well known in the marketplace
- Become a recognized authority in your industry
… then creating consistent, high-quality content and distributing it to your audience can help you achieve your goal.
The three main pillars to a successful content strategy are consistency, quality and distribution. I talk about these three things all the time because I know they’re what makes content marketing so effective.
It’s why I create episodic content every week with my videos and podcast. It’s also why I recommend all our Content 10x clients use the same strategy – because it works!
In this podcast episode, I share why episodic content is the sweet spot between these three main pillars and what benefits it could bring to your business.
Listen to the podcast episode…
Or watch the video podcast…
What is episodic content?
You could say episodic content is any form of content that is broken down and delivered as episodes. Your favorite TV shows are often a type of episodic content because they are on at the same time, in the same place, every week (well...before the days of binging whole series on Netflix, Amazon Prime, etc. but you get the gist!).
In the world of content marketing for businesses, episodic content has a reliable, set structure. It should be regular content that follows a schedule and is in the same format.
Take The Content 10x Podcast, for example. This is my episodic content. It’s a weekly show that goes live on Thursdays and has done since 2018.
Episodic content can come in many different formats. It could be a blog, video, podcast, or livestream, but it should be a “core” piece of content that people can revisit again and again after it’s been released. These episodes could make up a series, or a content library for your audience to access at later dates.
But your episodic content must stay in the same format (so you can maintain quality), be posted in the same location (distribution) and follow a regular cadence (consistency).
This way your audience will know when to expect your content, and look forward to it – just like they do with their favorite TV shows! They might even start to treat it like an event and make sure they never miss the next installment.
Episodic content sounds like a lot of work – what’s the alternative?
If you’re not a consistent content creator, then what are you?
If you only wait for inspiration to strike before you create content, then you’re not really adhering to a content marketing strategy at all. In fact, you’re just creating “random acts of content”.
I love this phrase. I think I first heard it from my friend and client Jay Baer. He believes that random acts of content are the #1 reason that content marketing fails. In his Convince & Convert blog he writes about why random acts of content fail:
“We create content for no reason and without any real thought put into who this content is for and what the objective is.”
To be clear, random acts of content are when you create a video here, a podcast episode there, the occasional blog post, livestream once in a blue moon. Whether it’s daily, monthly, or annually, you only pop up as and when you feel like it.
Your audience might feel like you’re difficult to follow. Even if they enjoy your content, they’ll likely lose interest when they have to constantly be on the lookout for it and not be able to rely on you.
The difference between episodic content and random acts of content is a lot like saving money in a high-interest account. With random acts of content, your money might grow, but your contributions are few and far between. But with episodic content, your consistent contributions accumulate quickly – and get more compound interest to boot.
How episodic content can benefit you
There are 7 reasons why episodic content is a beneficial content marketing strategy.
1. Episodic content grows a loyal audience
Just as people return to TV shows after they’ve been hooked in once, people will continue to come back to your content if they enjoyed it. They might even become a fan – subscribing and following – and binge your past episodes. People are way more likely to subscribe to you if they see there’s something worth subscribing for.
People love consistency. So if you can show up for your audience, they’ll show up for you. As the saying goes “build it and they will come” – but remember, you need to keep building consistently, otherwise, what are they coming back for?
2. Social media platforms reward consistency
Everyone’s always talking about ways you can outsmart social media algorithms, but really, they’re not that dissimilar to people. They seek out high-value, reliable and consistent content to show people and keep them on the platforms. If this is what you’re creating, then they’ll be far more likely to feature you at the top of your audiences’ feeds.
3. Episodic content is great for SEO
That’s right, it’s not just social media bots that like consistent content – it’s SEO bots too!
Search engines look for updated and reliable content to give to their audience. Think about it, if it can provide lots of people with great content, then more people will trust the search engine. If your content is consistently published and frequently generating repeated user interest, then the search engines will reward you with a higher ranking. It’s a win-win.
4. Episodic content streamlines your content creation process
If you know me, you’ll know that I thrive on processes and systems. I’m always looking for ways to optimize and streamline our processes at Content 10x to make more efficient use of our time and energy. Episodic content is perfect for any content creator who wants a one-size-fits-all creation and repurposing workflow.
Managing one-off pieces of content can be really time-consuming. But with episodic content, you’re always creating the same core content in the same format, so you can use the same processes to create and repurpose that content episode after episode. No reinventing the wheel here!
That’s why all of our Content 10x clients create episode content. It’s a requirement to work with us, because we know it’s going to give you the best chance at success. It also means we can work together easily and seamlessly to publish lots of high-quality, regular content.
5. Episodic content helps you develop and share ideas over time
If you want to discuss a big or complex topic then episodic content gives you an opportunity to break it down into smaller, easier-to-understand chunks. This is fantastic for any business looking to discuss or explain ideas without excluding people who don’t have prior knowledge on the topic.
One of our Content 10x clients, Peace of Mind Wealth Management, have done this brilliantly with their annuities series on their Secure Your Retirement podcast. They took a very complex product and, instead of trying to cram lots of information into one long, overwhelming and difficult to understand piece of content, they broke it down into a mini-series with more than 5 separate episodes.
Episodes give you the space to develop and frame your thinking further on a topic. If your content addresses current events, for example, then episodic content will keep you on top of changes, and won’t date as quickly as more sporadic content might.
6. Episodic content keeps you front of mind
According to a well-known marketing principle, people need to have more than 7 “touches” with your brand before they act upon a call to action. This means you need to be consistently showing up and getting in front of your audience.
There is a lot of competition and noise online, especially on social channels, so you need to make a repeated effort to impact your audience. This way, they’ll be more likely to remember your brand when they need a solution or product like yours.
To learn more about how your content can impact your customer’s journey, check out this blog post I wrote, or listen to podcast episode 134, “The Content Repurposing Customer Journey: from Mobile to Long-Form to Buying”.
7. Episodic content builds credibility
Finally, there’s no doubt that showing up regularly builds trust and credibility.
Even if your content is the best content in your industry, trust won’t build up over time with your audience if you’re not showing up regularly. People look for dependable sources of content and trust comes from that reliability.
As more people put trust in you, it’ll help you establish more authority, more interest and help you make more sales.
Like I mentioned before, episodic content can be a lot of hard work, but the benefits definitely make it worth it. And, if you want to streamline the process even further, it’s easy to enlist help. If you can commit to creating just the raw content, then our content repurposing service could be just what you’re looking for – we can do everything else for you.
Some examples of GREAT episodic content
Now, you might be considering what episodic content you could create. Remember that you’re going to have to stick to a format, so it’s best to choose something that suits you so you can create it time and time again.
One example is talk show style content. Here you might be joined by a guest or perhaps have a panel discussing a particular topic every week. You could host it in podcast, video or livestream form (which can be excellent for broadcasting to multiple channels at once.)
A great example of this is TechSmith, who host a weekly livestream called The Visual Lounge. Presenter Matt Pierce is joined nearly every week by a guest to talk about a hot topic. This is streamed live across YouTube and their social platforms, and after gets repurposed into a podcast, a blog, and plenty of extra material for their social media channels.
Another example is a behind-the-scenes show. This is almost like a reality show – and we know how much people love those! Drawing back the curtains on a regular basis and showing people what’s going on inside your business.
This is exactly what Startup Diary Podcast do. Host Adam Callow shares the inside scoop on running his business and people keep coming back to hear more of his stories.
Another form of episodic content could be a documentary style show. Your content can take people on a journey as you work through projects or learn new things, for example. This could be similar to behind-the-scenes content, or you could go one step further and script or plan out how you’re going to share your story.
One great documentary-style content creator is Ben Francis, the Founder of the breakout UK fitness brand Gymshark. Ben creates fantastic YouTube videos that really tap into the power of storytelling and keep his audience coming back for more.
Ben doesn’t currently create his videos in episodic form but they’re so successful, it proves there’s an audience appetite for this style. This could be a perfect opportunity for a content creator looking to do something different!
Finally, there’s the thought-leadership style. These can be solo shows or co-hosted. In this type of content, people seek to deliver direct information to educate and help their audience.
As I mentioned previously, our client Peace of Mind Wealth Management, achieve this by aiming to educate people about retirement and finances with their podcast shows.
But also, The Content 10x podcast is thought-leadership episodic content, which I hope helps you learn more about repurposing and content marketing.
Episodic content can have big benefits for your business. It's far more preferable than committing random acts of content!
The more you invest in episodic content, the quicker you’re going to see results.
I hope this post has inspired you to make episodic content part of your content marketing strategy. Do share your shows with me, I’d love to see them!
If you’re serious about consistently producing high-quality episodes but need some help with the repurposing and distribution, we can help.
Our services offer end-to-end repurposing, from creating a final edit of your raw content, through to publishing dozens of assets across all of your platforms. All we ask is that you send us the core content – we take care of the rest! To find out more, check out our services.