In the last couple of years, content marketing has become an effective form of marketing that numerous businesses use on a regular basis. Due to its origin as a digital marketing strategy, content marketing is entirely different from traditional marketing. Rather than interrupt potential customers while watching TV or listening to the radio, content marketing seeks to create appropriate and engaging content that drives organic website traffic, increases leads, and inspires sales teams.
Many business owners have a surface level idea of what content marketing is. In fact, most believe content marketing simply revolves around blog creation and social media posts. And while both are important, content marketing goes beyond just creating posts online. Before you can begin to create a content marketing strategy, you must understand it first. That way, you can increase your leads, improve brand awareness, and reach other business goals without facing many challenges along the way.
What is content marketing?
According to Entrepreneur, “content marketing is the art of seducing highly targeted leads into taking the desired actions.” And that’s exactly what goes on.
In its most basic definition, content marketing is a digital marketing process that involves planning, creating, producing, publishing, sharing all types of content to engage your audience. This careful process helps your brand in various ways such as build connections with your target audience, boost revenue, and enhance brand awareness.
Why is content marketing important?
Marketing has changed forms in the past few decades. As media moves towards digital channels, previous traditional marketing strategies are losing their effectiveness in reaching and converting audience members. That’s where content marketing comes into the mix.
Content marketing combats the issue that traditional marketing can’t seem to handle. Besides furthering a brand’s reach, content marketing allows your business to perform various tactics that impresses your target audience. For instance, through content marketing, your business can:
- Educate your audience about your brand
- Interact and build relationships with customers
- Show your audience the value of your products and services
- Boost lead conversion rates and sales
What are the different types of content marketing?
Content marketing is rarely a one-size-fits-all tactic. Many businesses may leverage a variety of content forms into their brand’s strategies. Of course, brainstorming creative and engaging any type of strategy requires a lot of planning. Take the time to learn about the forms of content that are popular today before incorporating them into your marketing plans.
- Social media. It’s no secret that social media is booming in today’s world. According to Statista, social media usage is one of the most popular activities with over 3.6 billion users around the world. These numbers make it super enticing for businesses to invest and work on building their social media presence. Many social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram contain helpful marketing tools that allow you to produce and distribute social media posts. These include photos, videos, and stories. Most social media platforms provide you with a massive amount of opportunities to engage with your target audience as well as potential customers. If you would like to learn more about how social media can help your business, take a look at our blog, 5 Ways to Use Social Media for Brand Awareness.
- Infographics. Infographics are images that display informative content such as graphs, charts, statistics, and other data in a simple, readable format. Most infographics also blend in short statements and images about a particular topic. As such, this type of content can be very effective in communicating your brand through education. If it is well-designed and presented, an infographic can be posted and shared for years.
- Blogs. Blogs is one of the most powerful forms of content marketing. Along with sharing information about any topic to your customers, blogs can be used to convert your readers into prospective customers, build your brand as an industry leader, and form relationships with your audience. Every blog should have an intent or goal behind it. When you decide on the goal behind your blog, you can decide on whether you would like to create a short-form or long-form blog. However, it should be noted that “on average, long-form blog posts generate nine times more leads than short-form posts,” according to Curata. Also, depending on your goal, you may decide to further promote your blog on other channels like social media or link to relevant websites. Check out our blog, How to Write a Successful Blog Post to learn more about creating effective blog posts.
- Podcasts. Since its inception in 2004, podcasts have become an increasingly popular medium. In 2020, as many as 55% of Americans 12 years or older listened to a podcast. That’s why countless businesses are investing their time in creating podcasts. Podcasts can help a brand boost their awareness and customer relationships while simultaneously promoting their products and services.
- Video. According to a study on Hubspot, around 54% of consumers want to see more video content from a brand or business they support. Video marketing is an engaging way to enhance conversions, ROI, and establish relationships with your target audience. Make sure the video content you create is relevant for your audience to share across social media platforms and websites.
How do you create a content marketing strategy?
Not all content marketing strategies are created equal—and they shouldn’t be. To create an effective content marketing strategy, you need to take the tactics, targets, and objectives into consideration so it’s designed for your brand’s goals. Here are a few tips you can take into each individual content strategy:
- Set clear goals. The most crucial part of every content marketing strategy is to set specific goals you would like to reach. For instance, you may want your piece of content to boost brand awareness or brand loyalty. This would mean taking specific actions to ensure that your content attracts your audience and teaches them about what your brand has to offer in their lives.
- Decide how your team will deliver. It’s also important to establish how your marketing team will create, produce, and distribute your content. It helps to have a detailed plan that determines who will produce what content and how it will be delivered.
- Determine what content you will create. Remember that the content that’s created must help push your target audience towards your set goals. You can do this by thinking about your target audience and their interests. This can help you create buyer personas, which allows you to create the right type of content for them.
- Choose the channels for your content. Some types of content work better on some platforms than others. For instance, if you choose to work on social media posts, you will need to decide what platforms to use for your posts. If you decide to create an infographic, you may choose to share it on your social media profiles or website.
- Create and deliver the content. Create and deliver your content through your chosen channels. To ensure the best results for your content, have a social media or editorial content calendar ready. This helps your content and social media team to stay on top of the content that’s created and scheduled throughout the week.
- Measure your content’s results. Of course, you cannot have an impactful content marketing strategy without measuring the results. By tracking and measuring your content’s progress, you can review any mishaps and necessary changes that can improve your overall content marketing strategy. You also need to know if your content has achieved your set goals. Some helpful analytics tools you can use include Google Analytics, Hubspot, and Sprout Social.
One of the primary goals of content marketing is determining the kind of content that fits your brand while also engaging your audience. Once you have your audience, content, and channels determined, you can develop a sufficient content marketing strategy that meets your marketing efforts efficiently. If you would like to learn more about how to further improve your brand, check out our blog, How To Strengthen Your Brand Right Now.