Every smart marketer knows that interviews are a gold mine of valuable content. Not only are they an incredibly efficient way of generating material, but they leave you with tons of options for future content pieces.
Andrew Garner at Mixergy, for example, has built an incredibly lucrative business on little more than repackaged interviews with various founders and thought leaders.
That’s all perfect for a content marketer, but what does it have to do with community management? Aside from the obvious content advantages mentioned above, here are three tangible benefits for your community building efforts.
Increased Content Value
One of your primary jobs as a community manager is to connect people with helpful information.
Sure, that means writing your own stuff, but it also means bringing in other voices as well. While the internet is teeming with all kinds of valuable content, that material often fails to meet your community members exactly where they are.
Conducting an interview gives you the opportunity to (gently!) grab a thought leader by the scruff of the neck and make him or her speak directly to your people and their concerns.
You can’t pull that kind of applied wisdom off of a random blog post.
I have no doubt you have plenty of great things to say and share with your community. A well-conceived interview with a thought leader in your space, however, will bring tremendous value to your online community.
Deepen Strategic Partnerships
When you invite someone else to speak to your people, you give them your implicit stamp of approval. You take a big risk by telling your community that this man or woman is worth listening to and even hiring.
That kind of risk can be scary. Is it worth it?
You have to spend money to make money, right? If wisely invest your social capital in this way, you can count on reaping a generous return.
If you find thought leaders who are genuinely appreciative of the opportunity and willing to reciprocate, you’ll find yourself developing significant relationships that will eventually yield fruit in all kinds of ways.
Find leaders in sympathetic community spaces. Figure out how an interview exchange could benefit each of you. Then, make it happen. As long as you pick interesting people with important things to say, you’ll never regret it.
Guest blogging is one of the oldest tricks in a blogger’s bag.
When you write a post for someone else’s blog, you expose yourself to an entire circle of people who have probably never heard of you. At the same time, you direct your existing readership to check out your guest post on that new blog.
The result? A net growth in subscribers for both authors.
This same dynamic applies on the community management level. When you invite a leader to speak into your space in some meaningful way, they're inevitably going to direct their people to listen in.
In the process, additional voices will make their way into the discussion which never would have been there before. As that conversation grows, so will your community.
The beauty of interviewing is that it doesn’t take much more than a willingness to reach out and offer someone a forum. Most thought leaders are more than happy to lend their voice because they intuitively understand the benefits listed above.
Send a few emails. Make a call of two. Set up an interview this week. Your people will love it.