How to Efficiently Promote Your Coworking Space with Content
Coworking spaces have been popping up all over the world. And you have jumped into this market full force, finding a couple of perfectly located buildings, getting them renovated, furnished, and digitally updated. Now it’s time to fill those spaces with the growing numbers who need permanent or temporary places to conduct business.
To do this, of course, you must market your products just as any other business would. So, what is your plan? It’s one thing to just try to throw all kinds of advertising and content out there, hoping that some of it are found by the right people. It is quite another to develop an overall content marketing strategy that will target and engage the right audiences. The latter is the better choice—it will ultimately save time and money and give you a much better ROI.
Let’s unpack two things here: how you develop a content marketing strategy, and then how that strategy should be translated into content creation and placement.
A content strategy is based on your business goals. Any content you create and publish must support those goals.
Your overall goal is to fill your spaces with happy tenants. But what are your sub-goals? One of these, for example, might be for your website/content to pop up on the first page of search engine results. For this, you will want to focus on SEO, so that when generic searches are conducted for coworking spaces in your locale, you will be there, and potential tenants will be driven to your website. This is a bit more complex than you might think. An entrepreneur might search for something like, benefits of coworking spaces. Do you have a blog post that speaks to that, with the right keywords/phrases that will get you found by search engine algorithms?
To identify those sub-goals, you need to ask yourself some key questions:
You may have several—freelancers, entrepreneurs, small businesses, etc. They may patronize a variety of online platforms, and you will need to do the research to discover where they hang out online and when.
Once you have crafted a persona for each of your audiences, you will understand the types of content they want, the solutions they want, and how you can market your value to them.
Your coworking space is going to solve problems that your audiences have. Identify those problems and what your solution offers. This should drive much of the content you create. Suppose, for example, there is an entrepreneur who simply needs to reserve temporary space for meetings. How does your space provide that solution? On the other hand, a freelancer might need to ditch the isolation of working from home and be around other freelancers, share ideas, etc. The type of content you create for this audience may be very different.
Competition is getting stiffer in this sector. You need to identify how you are different (and better) than your competition. Consider and identify what you can offer—an initial discount? 24-hour access? Lounge with snacks available? Common areas where people can meet informally and exchange ideas? Large spaces that can be reserved for events? Small conference rooms to meet with clients? Figure out what you offer and build some of your content around this.
If you have done the right research about your audiences and personas, then you will have the data to drive where each type of content should be published. These content platforms may include your website, your blog, social media, forums, etc.
You may want to use a variety of formats depending upon your audience and the platform to which the content will be published. These include text, photos, video, other forms of multimedia, etc. And consider that all of your content should be compatible with mobile devices (iOS and Android), as these devices now surpass PC use.
You will need to develop a schedule/calendar for the publication of your content, usually monthly. You may want to schedule by topic, crafting different types of content for separate platforms and audiences. You must also keep in mind the frequency of publication, depending on the platform. If followers are used to new blog posts once a week, then you need to keep that up; you may want to post on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram more often than that. Emails to those who have subscribed to your newsletter or who have provided an email address to download a piece of content (e.g., an e-book) should be placed on that calendar as well, but are subject to change based upon the analytics you receive about them.
Begin with a calendar that you realize may be altered, based upon the data you gather regarding response rates.
A key element of your content strategy will be to analyze its effectiveness on all platforms. Fortunately, there are plenty of tools to get this done. All major social media platforms provide analytics capabilities. Email service providers do the same. And you can use any number of tools to track traffic on your website and blog.
Plan to study these reports carefully. They will tell you what is working and what is not, and you will then be able to re-model content that needs more work.
Now that your strategy has been developed, it’s time to put it into action by actually crafting that content and placing/publishing as you have determined will resonate most with your audiences. Here are the key steps to make your content marketing most efficient and effective.
Most of your other content will drive potential tenants to your website. This is where you provide the content that will allow potential tenants to explore all that you offer and the value you provide. And this is where it all happens. Here you must have an amazing design, a great user experience, and all types of content—text, photos, videos, etc.—to appeal to all the visitors who arrive. This is your chance to make the best impression of all, to guide potential tenants to their problem solutions, and to begin the process of getting or finalizing tenant agreements. You will want to have great textual explanations of all that you offer; you will want to have photos and videos of your space; you will want to describe all the unique aspects of what you offer; perhaps you want to offer free trials or great initial discounts.
And make no mistake about this. You need to constantly monitor traffic and determine what on your website is popular and what is not. A website is not a set-in-stone piece of content. It must be fluid.
The key concept here is that you must be current and relevant. The topics you choose for content must resonate with those looking not just for coworking space but for lots of other information and inspiration relative to their specific circumstances. Your job is to find those topics that will satisfy these needs.
So, where do you go to find those topics? The answer is that you have a wealth of sources here.
- Look at your competition. What are they publishing that is getting lots of play? You can check out their websites, their blog, and their social media platforms.
- Use some great tools to identify those topics that are of high interest to your audiences.—Feedly and Buzzsumo are two examples. These tools will allow you to type in general categories and find the most highly trending topics in that specific niche.
Remember this: All of your topics do not have to directly relate to coworking. What are the other issues that freelancers, entrepreneurs, and start-ups face? Address some of those with your content. If you engage your audiences with quality content that resonates, they will see you as an expert resource, even if they are not yet ready to jump into a coworking environment. When they are, you will be their first choice.
If you are located in a city that is a transportation hub, do not discount direct advertising in airports, hotels, train stations, etc. These can be in the form of banner advertising—you will pay for space, of course. If you choose to use this method, be certain that your ads are highly engaging and compelling, that they contain more visuals than text, and that they show off your space well. This specific clientele may be a bit transient, but many are looking for a temporary space other than a coffee shop or a hotel room. Using a creative graphic artist to create these ads is a good idea.
Your content marketing on social media should begin long before you open your doors. This is the perfect platform to announce what is coming, to show photos and videos of your progress toward completion of your space. You want to capture as much interest as possible beforehand so that when you do launch and show the final product to your audiences, they have been watching and waiting.
Author's note: Recurpost social media scheduler can help to promote your best-performing content on various social media platforms.
Once you have launched, you will want to keep up your content presence on all the platforms you chose in the beginning. Do some research here about the best times of day and week to post, based upon the demographics of your audiences. And then, of course, run your analytics to determine your own best times for each platform.
Every post you publish on social media must have a link to a page on your website that directly relates to that content.
Social media is also the perfect venue for posting events—have an open house for your grand opening; host other events and tours periodically. Garner enthusiasm for them via your social media posts.
Here is where you can promote yourself as an expert in your niche. And here is where your content can shine, if it is creative and engaging. This involves educating, entertaining, and inspiring your reading/viewing audience so that they continue to return for more and share your content with others. You will want compelling headlines, and there are tools to help with this. Beyond that, however, you must create compelling content to go along with that headline.
You are focused on the business of launching and managing a coworking space. You are not necessarily a great content writer. Should you need help crafting that engaging content, you should check out UnemployedProfessors, a writing service with a department of creatives who create compelling content for a large variety of businesses. They have a great reputation for getting results.
If you choose to create your content, be certain that you follow some clear rules:
- Keep it simple. Use a style and reading level that approximates that of a middle school student. You can check your reading level with any number of tools.
- Divide your content into snackable sections with sub-headings.
- Use visuals and media whenever possible. People tend to focus more on visuals and absorb that type of content much faster than text.
- Provide lots of opportunities for sharing your content, as well as the ability to react, ask questions, and begin discussions.
It’s rather a trite statement to say that Content is King. But, in the end, it is. As you work to get your coworking space out there, you must use content—all kinds of content. Develop your strategy first, use all the platforms that are logical for your niche, and craft content that will set you apart from all others. Is it hard work? Yes, it is. But if you do this right, your business will thrive.
The article was written by Jessica Fender, a copywriter and blogger at Writeload with a background in marketing and sales. She enjoys sharing her experience with like-minded professionals who aim to provide customers with high-quality services.