Let’s face it, no one is going to visit your blog for the heck of it unless you’re known for providing valuable insight. What your customers, leads, and audience are looking for is valuable content on how their business can do better through your insights. But in order to hit this on the nail, you will have to do this in a way that is organic rather than annoyingly disruptive.
Some of you are probably asking why investing in content marketing matters. Well, as people grow increasingly addicted to their phones and computer screens, they will be searching for content that is engaging and adds value to their lives and/or business (which oftentimes *are* their lives). This, dear reader, is crucial for increasing conversions, building brand awareness, and cementing yourself as a thought leader in your respective industry. While the pen truly is still stronger than the sword, the battle for entrepreneurial supremacy in 2020 has largely gone digital.
In other words, a business that lacks an online presence risks becoming irrelevant in an age when our lives revolve largely around the digital realm.
What Is Content Marketing & Why Is It Important?
Content marketing is defined as the process of interacting with your audience through printed media with the ultimate aim of ensuring brand loyalty. This includes planning, creating, distributing, sharing, and publishing thoughtful written materials that increases your audience’s awareness of your brand and hopefully increasing sales. Earned media is a great outlet to reach the audiences you’re looking to target.
But why is content marketing in particular crucial to ensuring this end goal? To put it simply, audiences generally resonate better with brands they can relate to, and producing content they like to consume acts as a way of letting them know who you are and what you can offer them. Businesses that are able to effectively use content marketing often build solid relationships with their audiences, which in turn results in greater loyalty. Take for example the digital bank Revolut which invests heavily in content marketing to educate their audiences about their products and why their services solve the challenges faced by their consumers. In doing this, they have established themselves as leaders in their industry, making them one of the go-to companies for those seeking the services of a digital bank.
Also, as consumers grow increasingly conscious about their community, content marketing is also a way for businesses to build rapport around their goals which their customers might be staunch believers in. This is especially the case for business involved in disruptive technologies or services that seek to shake the status quo.
Must content be strictly limited to articles? Of course not! That would be boring! Besides, the content you produce largely depends on what your audiences look for. Content you can use to engage with your audience include:
– Social media content which can be used to capture the attention of 3.6 billion social media users around the world on platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
– Infographics, which generally work better for audiences that are more visually inclined, that make use of graphics and easily digestible text to educate readers about certain subject matters.
– Blog posts that discuss certain subject matters that may be of interest to audiences.
– Video content that engages with audiences in a dynamic way.
– Paid ad content, which often coincides with inbound marketing, that broadens the reach of your marketing efforts to a greater audience.
Strategizing Your Content Marketing Plan
The most crucial part of executing an effecting content marketing strategy is recognizing your goals. These must be specific to your business and should act as complementary tools to other goals you may have outside of marketing. Other than the obvious goals of boosting brand awareness and building loyalty among customers, goals can include attracting prospective partners and building trust with prospective customers. These goals should also be supplemented with quantifiable indices that measure whether or not you are meeting these goals to help you properly assess the effectiveness of your strategy. It is also important to schedule content ahead of time to ensure consistency which is crucial for this to work.
In terms of deciding what content you should work with, you must be able to put yourselves in the shoes of your audience – what do they need to know? What challenges do they want to overcome? What sort of products or services are they looking for? You should also gauge whether the tone in which you deliver your content. Think about it this way, the way you talk to your buddies may not be same way you speak to your grandmother.
Once you have figured out what content you’ll be putting out there, you must then decide where you are going to distribute your content. For the most part, this will be obvious based on the content you’re creating, but it’s worth bearing in mind which platforms your audiences are most active in. For example, those involved in the crypto space often use Telegram while those into fashion and travel may frequent platforms like Instagram. After deciding on a viable distribution channel, you should consider setting a budget to add ammunition to your content marketing initiatives. Things to consider include whether or not you need to invest in software such as social media management tools (i.e. Buffer and Hootsuite) and graphic software (i.e. Adobe Illustrator), content creators, ads spaces, or even brand mentions from influencers. Though keep in mind that these investments should be measured to determine whether they provide value to your content marketing initiatives.
All in all, content marketing is a simple yet effective way of engaging your audience and increasing brand awareness in a way that feels organic and thoughtful. The hardest part is simply figuring out what content you should produce and where you should distribute them, but once you have figured those out, they become one of the most important elements of your brand.
Just remember that everyone and everything has a distinct identity – including your business. So it’s important to make sure it shines through effectively.
Still struggling to figure out what on earth content marketing is and how to run it effectively? You’ve come to the right place. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill in the contact form available on this page.