Where Should You Put Your Content?

Print Room Beamish

I’ve been asked by subscribers of my personal newsletter how I decide what goes on my blog and what goes into my newsletter. I think the answer differs depending on your strategy, but I’m more than happy to tell you how I view it. I put information that sells on my blog, and information that nurtures in my newsletter.

Information that Sells

My job, because people seem confused these days as to what exactly it is I do or am selling, is to help mid-sized to larger companies build business (revenue and growth) by improving their use of the human digital channel (social media, email marketing, mobile marketing, content marketing, and other business applications). When I write something here on [chrisbrogan.com], the goal is to help YOU, and then also to entice potential clients who are seeking ideas on how to build up business.

Thus, what goes onto my blog is information that I hope gets indexed by Google, that I hope gets shared by you, and that I hope is found to be useful to the kinds of clients I like to work with (primarily B2C, but I get some B2B as well). Lots of times, however, I write for my community and not my marketplace. This article is for you. It’s not really as useful for a bigger company, unless that company is just as uncertain where to put which kind of content. See the difference?

Information that Nurtures

On my newsletter, I write personally to you. I write with ideas that I think will help you grow yourself, and sometimes your business. Last week, I wrote about how to start an email marketing program to grow your community. This week, I’m going to write about how one starts charging for services, and/or the whole money thing in general. (If you want that information for free, subscribe here.)

My idea is that my newsletter content is built to nurture my community.

That doesn’t mean you can’t or shouldn’t sell to your community. Don’t forget: if you’re doing it right, your community is very willing to hear what you’re offering for sale, because they know that you’re only offering products and services that are of value to their own needs. So you can sell. You just have to spend more time nurturing than selling, lest you lose the privilege of having a strong email newsletter community.

What About the Outposts?

As your primary site is your Home Base, social networks are Outposts. What should you create for those places? On Google+, for instance, I might write a piece that isn’t a blog post. What I do there, quite often, is just write the “liner notes” to this site. I write information that I find interesting, or that might tell you more about me, but that isn’t exactly the bread-and-butter of [chrisbrogan.com]. For instance, when I write about music, I tend to write about it there. Same thing with Twitter and LinkedIn. If I still belonged on Facebook, I would write posts that were specific to my community and try to help nurture it even more.

How About You?

Does this line up with what you’re doing? Does this make sense? How have you found this kind of approach helpful, or how has the opposite treated you?

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  • http://bloggingwithsuccess.net Ishan

    It does not line up at all with what I am doing and now I know where I’m doing mistakes. 

    I’ll be giving this approach a try for sure.

    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      Let me know how it works out, and wishing you success with your work. : ) 

  • http://owengreaves.com/ owengreaves

    Hmmm….I don’t think I’m all that strategic with my content, I blog it always, I put it out there on my Outposts, that includes Google+, my goal is to reach as many Entrepreneurs and Business Owners as possible. You would think I would be more specific in my targeting. The truth is, in my research, the new JOB is self-employment, Entrepreneurship, which would lead me to believe my content is for everyone. Mostly because I believe everyone will be self-employed, and or will be an affiliate of something.

    I merely share my thoughts and findings, not necassarily to sell something, because most of the time I don’t, but when I do, I’m grateful.

    We all put our content out here on the Interwebs with the hope someone wioll find useful, helpful, and even interesting, but I don’t expect that, I leave that in the hands of the people.

    I tend to put my content out here as a faith walk, I give away 90% and charge for 10% – it’s the Open & Free Business Model I preach & teach.

    I don’t teach Social Media, I use it. I don’t teach the Internet, I use it. I do teach a better way of thinking about business, and I share my findings on how business will be changed in the future. The under 20 generation, that’s where we should be focusing our time, they will re-write the rules on business, not us.

    Just a couple thoughts, content is only part of the equation, how we think is the bigger part.


    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      We agree a lot. : ) 

      • http://owengreaves.com/ owengreaves

         You are clearly a man of many words : )

  • http://www.owenmarcus.com Owen Marcus

    Thanks to you I’m loving what Google+ offers me that other social networks don’t offer – a chance to share what I wouldn’t share on my blog.

    My blog is like my magazine, Google+ is hanging with my friends. 

    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      Agreed, Owen. I look at it similarly. : ) 

  • http://conversioncues.com/loyal-audience-development Dewane Mutunga


    Your approach makes sense after seeing your explanation. As for me, I use my blog and newsletter to serve and provide value to my community/audience. 

    On social networks, I share helpful and entertaining content. I try to initiate more personal, one on one engagement while on social networks.

    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      I love that mindset, Dewane. Great way to split it up. 

  • http://www.ferreemoney.com/blog/ Neil Ferree

    It took me a couple of laps around the track to decide where and when to post, publish and share my content. Once I decided which Web 2.0 properties to include in my Web 2.0 Link Wheel, I added the “Share This” widget to my WP blogs (all 5 of them) so I could use the Chrome extension to quickly “push” this content to these web 2.0 sites that I control so that I know who would see what on these sites like Pinterest, Posterous, YouTube, LI etc.

    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      How’s that working for you? Where is it taking root? Where else? 

      • http://www.ferreemoney.com/blog/ Neil Ferree

        Usual suspects [G+, Twitter, FB and Pinterest] however, I just took the SEOmoz SEO survey and noticed the SMM sites in Q12 of the survey, which I suspect are likely the top tier SMM sites, else they wouldn’t have made it into his survey?

  • http://www.courtneyengle.com Courtney Engle

    I’ve been struggling with this at times to- but also adding in podcasts, Youtube content, etc. all to draw the crowd into services I offer, speaking opportunities, or membership communities.  The balance of what is free for them to find, how much to give out freely and in which places, and what goes into newsletters and/or paid access only.  At times I also struggle with when to share the recap in the newsletter of what was shared already in other places too.  Exclusive content there, or a summary of it all?  I think you’re helping clear it up, but I’ll be thinking on this a bit more today for sure.  

    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      I think that newsletters that do summaries are tricky, because they have the sense of “what you’ve missed, but that I’m going to give it to you again.” Leftovers. 

      • http://www.mybizperforms.com/ Bettina Horvath

        That’s an interesting point to consider. Leftovers. Never seen it like that! 

  • John Murphy

    I like this article as it makes me think a bit more about the split between the different ways of communicating. I use my blog/site as my hub and everything is a satellite of that.
    I tend to use the blog as useful information or tips for my audience and then I select what I think are very specific to my email list and create a connection to that. I suppose in that sense my emails are ore personal.
    Since I don’t have “products” that I sell online, the blog and the emails are really about maintaining and building relationships.

    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      I think that’s a great way to do it, John. : ) 

  • http://www.turndog-millionaire.com/ Turndog Millionaire

    makes sense, thanks for the rather simple yet effective advice :)

    My email newsletter at this rate maybe just a 2.0 version of yours haha

    Matt (Turndog Millionaire)

  • http://www.mybizperforms.com/ Bettina Horvath

    Oh I’m asking myself this question all the time! Thanks for helping with the answer! :)

     I’ve now settled on a “newsletter” that is written in a very personal style, just like any email I’d write individually. I’ve changed to that half a year ago or so and it has been well received. I tend to sell in those but usually I wrap it up in useful content. But I often thought I’d like to get away from that (the selling). You’ve given a renewed boost in that direction. Many thanks! 

    It makes me think … I’d really like to know how many of my newsletter subscribers are actually also following me on at least one other network somewhere. Surely there must be an app for that? If anyone knows …. ta :)

  • alexandralevit

    Excellent, excellent post, Chris!

  • Marie-Louise

    Hi Chris, thanks for this clear article. I have not gotten that far yet in setting up a newsletter, as I am still in the process of finding out what it is my followers are really looking for.

    Are you not using Facebook any more? (hope this is not a dump question, to which everybody already knows the answer, if so, sorry about that) Did it not work for you?

    Warm regards,

  • Nikki Teller

    Brilliant article Chris. So freakin’ simple, love it!

  • http://theme-dutch.com/cesare-portfolio-wp-theme Theme-Dutch

    This provides a very simple yet clear distinction, and yes,
    you’re using two of the most effective media when it comes to creating and
    publishing content. I certainly like what you said about newsletters—that they
    are meant to nurture communities. It’s therefore annoying for a lot of companies,
    interestingly many of them start-ups, tapping on them in order to hard sell.
    Where’s the information? How do we know you’re really trying to help us out? Before
    I end this, let me also commend you for doing a fantastic job. I love your blog
    (though “love” seems to be an understatement). 

  • http://twitter.com/Sparta_PT Jen Brown

    A fascinating blog post, Chris. Thank you.

    I confess that I had never really given any deliberate consideration as to how I divide my content between my blog & newsletter. 

    Thinking about it now, I think the divide for me is educational/informative material for the blog & more personal/intimate/specific content for the newsletter. I almost want to describe it as impersonal for the blog & personal for the newsletter but that’s not quite right either.

    Thanks for making me think about it!

    Best wishes,Jen

  • http://twitter.com/RobinDickinson Robin Dickinson

    Chris, I really appreciate that your strategy adds value on all channels and that you don’t just duplicate or echo content across them. This way, you honour the ‘heavy user’, the person who really appreciates your content and subscribes to all channels.

    Best, Robin

  • http://www.LukeARyan.com Luke Ryan

    Hi Chris, regarding online video – do you recommend using only one service like Youtube to store and promote your videos or is it better to upload your videos onto multiple channels (youtube, vimeo, viddler etc) in the hopes of building a larger audience.   

  • http://www.stamford-consultants.com/ Mary Jo Knappich

    Thanks Chris, good content that helps clarify information content and location.

  • http://twitter.com/bonniejeffers Bonnie Jeffers

    Really appreciated this article, Chris! I hadn’t thought about the division between blog content and newsletter content. I am fairly “newish” at content marketing. I read your “leftovers” comment regarding newsletter content a bit further down in the comments. In your opinion, is it wrong to create blog posts and then include them within the newsletter AS the content? Should there be other content that cannot be found on the blog? I write B2B and B2C content for my company. 

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  • http://CreativeJourneyman.com Nando

    I’m struggling with this “leftovers” analogy. I’d be interested to know what the perception of email subscribers is. Do they think less of the “rehashing” of blog content as newsletter, or do they appreciate the delivery of content they may have otherwise missed?I’m torn, but also biased, ’cause it’s what I do. Food for though, for shure.

  • Lisa

    Interesting about Google+ – I tend to share links there on interesting tidbits but have not done micro-blogging there. Good idea Chris, thanks!

  • http://twitter.com/RCONNOR111 ROBERT CONNOR III

    Like your pic….Have a great day on purpose!

  • http://www.marcensign.com/blog Marc Ensign

    I’m still trying to find my home on Google+. I like it. I see it’s valuable. I just haven’t found my groove there yet. If only there were a book that taught how to use Google+ for business!  I know, I know…it’s the next book on my list, I promise.

  • http://www.webpartnergroup.com/ Web Marketing Dallas

    This was a really helpful post. Light bulb moment when it comes to putting which content where. thanks.

  • http://www.centuryglobalservices.com/ Angela Brown

    Chris thanks for sharing your knowledge . It’s really very much use full and informative post .

  • http://www.indian-seo-company.com/ Aditi Datta

    Content plays an important part and should  be written with proper keywords, being appropriate to the website and also there should not be keyword stuffing that is excessive use of keywords. I think keywords should be used  a minimum amount. Content should also relate to the website.

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  • http://www.seorus.com.au/ seo training mellbourne

    Great artice about put your contents 

  • Deborah

    Excellent comments.  But it is all taking sooo much time- posting here, blogging there, tweeting somewhere else. I told somebody that i now spend 80% of my time marketing myself and 20% of the time actually doing the work ( and getting paid).

    Life was easier 20 years ago.   The network was key as was the referral. It still is but now I also have to ‘prove’ my worth, be a thought leader, writer, blogger and marketer.  So I’m working longer and harder making the same amount of money. 

  • http://mariasconsulting.com Maria Snyder Consulting

    Your nurture is important, interest is retained resulting in a relationship.  I appreciate the care that goes into crafting words as such to bring about concern and thought as your newsletter has.  I see tremendous value and lesson within your blog posts.  They’re human, real and challenge me to think. This absolutely makes sense.  After all the connection is established and you have hooked me because I always seek more.  Thank you. 

  • http://mariasconsulting.com Maria Snyder Consulting

    Your nurture is important, interest is retained resulting in a relationship.  I appreciate the care that goes into crafting words as such to bring about concern and thought as your newsletter has.  I see tremendous value and lesson within your blog posts.  They’re human, real and challenge me to think. This absolutely makes sense.  After all the connection is established and you have hooked me because I always seek more.  Thank you. 

  • Darlene Hildebrandt

    I actually don’t have a newsletter.  I just recently (4 months ago) started collecting emails and added a subscription form to my site.  I’m getting a few new ones a week but my only broadcasts that go out to them are notices of new posts.  Do you have any other articles on newsletters?  How often should I send one?

    I have enough trouble finding time to blog  once a week, not sure how I’ll find different content for a newsletter.  I’d love to know how you do it?  Or anyone else?


    • http://www.BillHibbler.com Bill Hibbler

      Darlene, if you do some searching on the site, you’ll find some good articles where Chris lays out his strategies and tactics for creating blog posts. Dig around and find the gems. 

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  • vsoriano

    I completely get this. Separating the branding of blogs with commercial interests VS those that are “editorial”, I think goes a long way towards viewer loyalty. No one really likes being sold to much less marketed to. But people do like getting other people’s opinions – especially if they are provided in small, standalone chunks that are helpful and informative. Like this one!

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    Thank you Chris for nurturing me more with your knowledge in the right way to handle your content. Great Article!

  • http://www.kooldesignmaker.com/ web development services

    Very important point you have shared in this article and often webmasters don’t know where they should put content on their website.

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  • http://aaronhoos.com/ Aaron Hoos

    Thanks for this valuable post, Chris.  You’re describing something I’m very passionate about: Applying content to your sales funnel. And it’s true not only in the “marketing” (i.e. the blog posts you’ve mentioned) and the “nurturing” (i.e. newsletters) but also in post-sales communication as well.

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