Image by Gavin Llewellyn.
I imagine that most of you will have heard of the concept of a ‘vicious circle’, those horrible situations where one thing going wrong leads to another, and every mistake compounds the first one.
I’m assuming most of you have also heard of the phrase ‘virtuous circle’, where everything turns out for the best and feeds into the first awesome thing you did.
In terms of marketing, virtuous circles are very important, but with all the focus commercial marketing places on one-shot campaigns, client briefs and new opportunities, in can be hard to retain sight of these all-important virtuous marketing circles.
I think this is a mistake.
So How Do I Get A Virtuous Circle Started?
There’s no one way to start a virtuous circle, but there are a lot of methods that are easier and more reliable.
Human relationships are the best examples of virtuous circles outside marketing, so it stands to reason that they’re also awesome within that world.
I say something interesting to you, so you’re happy, and you say something interesting back in the comments section (hint hint!), and we keep adding knowledge to each other until we’ve come up with a complete system for world (marketing) domination!
Reaching out to important bloggers for marketing purposes means you’ve built a relationship just like that, but many marketers move on once they’ve got some PR, or a link, from their targeted influencer. Mistake!
To sustain a virtuous circle, you have to keep offering value to the relationship. Make sure that they think of you as an ally, or even better, a friend. How? By acting friendly! Simple, right?
What you get in return is a constant stream of positive mentions and feeling, with relatively little effort on your part.
Use Multiple Platforms
One of the coolest ways of generating and sustaining a virtuous marketing circle is using multiple platforms.
If your client lacks credibility as a thought leader, you might promote them on one social media platform, for instance. If it gets a good reaction there, you can use that as instant evidence of your client’s credibility on a separate social media platform, and another, and another – and then talk about the positive reaction on the first platform all over again!
Once people are talking about them, others will start to blog about and link to your client. Free PR. Once people are blogging about and linking to your client, you can promote these blogs even more on social media, building relationships and maintaining a constant source of goodwill on the internet.
It’s almost more of a virtuous snowball than a virtuous circle, as opportunities in one area of a campaign improve your ability to exploit opportunities elsewhere. Make the most out of it!
Almost every area of marketing has links to some other area that can be exploited. Email marketing can be tied to social campaigns, social campaigns into search engine optimisation, and optimisation into fiddling with checkout processes, conversion rates and usability studies.
With almost everything feeding into almost everything else, it’s child’s play to generate a situation where your email marketing ends up promoting your PR, which feeds your blog, which feeds your email newsletter!
Virtuous marketing circles are everywhere, you just have to start looking for them.
James Duval writes about marketing for Strategy Internet Marketing, who are a digital marketing agency based in Bristol offering Pay on Results SEO and CRO packages.