Let’s assume you’ve just written an incredible piece of content. Congratulations, you’ve done it. You’ve written the most amazing, witty, awe-inspiring article ever imagined. Angels weep over this content. It’s informative, it’s funny, it’s memorable and the world should know about it. Nay, the world needs to know about it.

With nervous trepidation and hopeful aplomb, you upload this sun-melting piece of content to your site. World, stand still and behold. Heavens, observe and rejoice. Internet, read this and share.

But wait! How can this monument of creative expression change the world if the world doesn’t know about it? How can I make sure I’m getting the most mileage out of my content?

Let’s assume that you’ve already done some SEO legwork on this. You’ve done outreach, found some great partners to promote the post, and dropped this content bombshell all over your own social media footprint. What more can be done?

That’s where paid advertising comes into play. Paid ads to help promote your content are beneficial for one ultimate reason: they are extremely targeted.

Take a moment and think about who exactly you would like to find your new piece of content. What job title do they hold? What are their other interests? How often are they on social media? Paid advertising on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn can find those people for you and, more importantly, can put your content in front of their eyeballs.

To put it most simply, identify who needs to see your content the most (those most likely to care about it and share it with others) and use paid advertising to get in front of those people. A small upfront investment can lead to thousands of extra shares.

One prime example of success with this strategy was outlined by the great Larry Kim (CEO at Wordstream.com) at a recent SLC|SEM event. Larry described a very average piece of content that he created about the efficacy of Facebook ads and posted it onto his site. He invested $50 of ad spend to run some highly targeted, paid social ads to influencers he thought would be interested in his content. That led to him being contacted by Business Insider, who asked to use his content on their site as a guest post. Success! This allowed his content to reach an entirely new and influential audience, but Larry didn’t stop there.

He invested an additional $50 to promote the Business Insider guest post, which led to him being contacted by Fox News to film a TV segment talking about Facebook advertising. The reach of appearing on television is massive compared to the original audience of the post and he achieved it all through two small rounds of paid advertising. More success!!

Now we can’t all be Larry Kim (not yet), but we can all use the same tools he utilized for his simple post about Facebook ads. Reach and total shares can be increased dramatically for a relatively small investment of time and ad spend.

To develop your strategy, you should ask yourself these two great questions: who should we be targeting with our paid advertising and what content is worthy of such promotion?

Your target for this type of promotion will depend to a great extent on industry research. Try to find industry experts who have a decent-sized following of their own. Getting a share from someone with no followers is like opening an empty box on Christmas morning. It might look nice, but ultimately the whole ordeal is a very hollow experience. Utilize tools like Buzzsumo to help you along the way.

Even if you’ve already identified who you should target with your paid advertising campaigns, the fact remains that you still need to know which content is worthy of a push. We again turn to Larry Kim for guidance. During his SLCSEM presentation, Larry gave us his secret for discovering push worthy content.

Larry recommends using Twitter as a content proving ground. Post all your content to Twitter as a link, and whatever gets the most interactions on that platform is usually a good candidate for further development. Even if your interaction rate is very low, this process for finding a standout is all relative.

Let’s say for example that your average number of interactions on Twitter is 1. What you need is to find a post with at least 2 and use that as the content to promote. If your average is 1,000, make a list of posts that have more than that and choose from there. It’s that simple.

Once you’ve selected a piece of killer content and identified who exactly is most likely to share that post, all that remains is to run a small ad spend budget to see what results you get. While it might not guarantee your post will become the next viral sensation, it can definitely have a bigger impact than you might think.

Contact me today to learn how your business can benefit from Paid Advertising.