Businesses have known for a long time that content marketingreally works. That’s why they do research, produce white papers and sendnewsletters and email newsletters.

However, they begin to hesitate when it comes to socialmedia. Some fear unvetted feedback or simply don’t know how to use thetechnology.

This week, my colleague RichDonley and I will talk to small businesses at AutomationAlley about content marketing.

Extending content marketing through social media is an idealway to extend thought leadership, raise brand awareness and generate businessinterest and leads. Consumers use the Internet to research, gather informationand educate themselves. Instead of being sold through direct channels, today’sconsumers want to discover information and new services themselves and byreading about others’ experiences.

Taking traditional content and extending it online throughdocument-sharing sites such as SlideShareand docstoc, using press releases forsearch engine optimization and connecting to consumers through social networkscan raise the visibility of a company without a significant financialinvestment. A time investment is involved but once these sites are set up forcompany, extending the content becomes second nature.

As we lay out in our point of view, companies need to thinklike media companies and produce content. Through social media, businesses canquickly gain a wider audience and remain top of mind with current customers.

Edited to add: The presentation is now available: 

Marketing Success: How Content Drives the New Conversation

View more presentations from Airfoil Public Relations.

Tonja Deegan