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You’re probably familiar with the term “content marketing.” But what is it, really?
And more importantly, why should you care?
What is Content Marketing?
Sounds pretty good so far, right? But wait, there’s more (say that in your best infomercial voice)!
What is the Purpose of Content Marketing?
The purpose of content marketing is to attract and retain customers by creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content.
Content marketing can help businesses build trust and credibility, establish thought leadership, generate leads and sales, and drive website traffic by providing customers with the information they value.
How Effective is Content Marketing?
Content marketing is an effective way to reach and engage customers. Businesses can attract and retain customers by creating and sharing relevant and valuable content.
Additionally, content marketing can help businesses build trust and credibility with their customers.
And now that you know the basics. Here are our top 5 benefits of content marketing …
1. Increased Reach and Visibility
Content marketing can reach new people interested in what you have to offer. By creating and sharing high-quality content, you can attract attention and drive traffic back to your website or blog.
In addition to increasing your reach, content marketing can also be an extremely effective way to increase organic traffic. By creating content that is shareable and optimizing it for search engines, you can ensure that your content is seen by more people.
But once your content is created, your job isn’t done. Nothing is more satisfying than smashing that big, beautiful “publish” button on your blog post.
But traffic is not guaranteed, so spoon-feed your fresh masterpiece to your audience.
Publish it on social. Share it in your newsletters. Send an email to your subscribers that you’ve made a new post. Repurpose it into a video, podcast, or graphic.
Give your ideal customers every possible chance to find your content so they can see that your product or service is the one for them.
Optimize your content to be found in search results to drive traffic to your website. Be sure it’s shareable and you have a distribution strategy to complement your content marketing.
2. Improved Engagement Across All Stages of the Funnel
Content marketing is a great way to do it if you’re looking to improve engagement across all stages of your marketing funnel.
By creating relevant, targeted content, you can attract prospects at the top of the sales funnel and keep them engaged through to the bottom.
When you have a valuable, informative piece of content, you show that you’re an authority in your industry worth listening to while nurturing your audience from prospect to customer.
Content marketing is powerful for engaging prospects and customers at all funnel stages:
- Top of the funnel — Draw in your audience by telling your brand story and unique value proposition. Do this through social posts, podcasts, or paid ads landing pages.
- Middle of the funnel — Let your audience know your product will solve their problem. Start to segment your audience. Not sure how? Start by inviting them to participate in surveys or interviews to understand better how they encounter your product.
- Bottom of the funnel — This is where you get conversions. Give a free trial, incorporate customer testimonials, or create how-to articles that eliminate any doubts your prospects may still have.
By providing your audience with content relevant to their needs and interests, you can move seamlessly move them from one stage in the funnel to the next.
Learn and understand your audience. Get to know what makes them tick, and fully incorporate that in your content to build their trust.
3. Greater ROI Than Traditional Marketing Tactics
Are you looking for ways to improve your marketing return on investment? High-quality content marketing can also lend itself to higher ROI. It can provide many benefits, including enhanced leads, higher conversion rates, and greater brand awareness.
Traditional marketing tactics, such as print ads and television commercials, can be expensive and difficult to measure. Content marketing costs, on the other hand, are relatively inexpensive and easy to track.
When creating and distributing content, there are no hard upfront costs, and you don’t pay for traffic. The initial time investment in writing quality content isn’t cheap, but it pays off over time.
But when discussing content marketing concerning ROI, you must be clear on what you want your content marketing strategy to accomplish. And this needs to be directly related to your overall goals as a business.
Oftentimes, general terms are considered to be a goal of content marketing — such as “brand awareness.” Great. But how will you measure it? Subscribers? Leads? Number of downloads?
The number of subscribers makes sense if you’re penetrating a new market. In that case, track how many email sign-ups you’re getting.
Want leads? Who doesn’t? That’s a relevant goal when your sales team is using content marketing as a tool to find new prospects, but tie it to the number of landing page conversions.
Content marketing can improve ROI but you must tie it to a specific business goal rather than a general concept.
4. More Opportunities to Demonstrate Thought Leadership
By establishing thought leadership and publishing authoritative content, you are positioning yourself as an expert in your field. This will also allow you to better define ways for those in your industry to conduct business, but it will also move your target audience through the customer journey.
There are three types of thought leadership:
Industry Thought Leadership
Keep an eye on the news, new products — new, well, anything that pertains to your industry—report on the updates. Share insights on the innovations. Predict trends.
This will get you to stand out in your industry and train your future and existing customers to look to you for information.
Organizational Thought Leadership
The blog posts, videos, and other content you publish about your organization should be about your organization’s culture, how you attract and retain talent, how you operate that sets you apart from your competition, and everything in between.
This should also be tied into your company’s vision and why it’s unique. After all, if you’re doing or saying what everyone else is, then you’re not producing thought leadership.
Product Thought Leadership
Becoming a thought leader isn’t what your actual goal should be. Becoming a thought leader should be a product of you conducting business as you intended.
Publish your best practices. Provide how-tos on what you’re an expert in—product roadmaps for those who seek advice to become more strategic.
Creating blog posts and other types of content allows you to share your knowledge and bring value to potential and current customers. You demonstrate your expertise and give readers valuable information when you write informative content. This, in turn, builds trust and confidence in your business.
Be original and be creative. Publish and repurpose your content in a variety of forms to establish your authority in as many ways as possible.
5. Build Customer Relationships
You should create various types of content that provide real value to your audience.
People don’t care about how much you know until they know how much you care. So show your audience that you’re invested in their success. Share helpful tips and tricks to save money, time, and energy.
Show that you understand their struggles and frustrations. Bring up their pain points, and provide resources that solve those to make their lives easier.
Say you’re a vacuum company that specializes in a model for pet owners. If you know your audience loves their pets, but hate pet hair, bring it up.
Better yet, agitate that point.
Remind them that they can’t wear black and make it out the door without getting little visible dog hair on their pants. Or, they need a lint roller in their car, purse, desk drawer, and hall end table.
Then, once they know you understand their struggle — introduce your top-of-line vacuum and all of its features that make pet hair disappear. (Cue angelic music.) No more are they relegated to a life of light colors to mask the fur of their beloved pet.
Once you’ve built credibility with your audience, they seek guidance and advice. And they will turn to you for solutions to their problems.
This creates opportunities for you to earn their loyalty and repeat business through content creation.
Your customers need to know you’re not just trying to sell them a product. They want you to solve their problems and make life easier. The more you connect with them in your content, the more they’ll trust you, and eventually become a loyal customer.
The advantages of content marketing are plentiful. You can achieve many important business objectives, including increased reach and visibility, improved engagement across all stages of the funnel, more significant ROI than traditional marketing tactics, more opportunities to demonstrate thought leadership, and building better relationships with your target audience.
Now is the time to start if you’re not already incorporating content marketing into your digital strategy.
Not sure where to start? RedShift’s got your back.
By partnering with us, we’ll ensure that your strategy incorporates all four elements of effective content marketing: relevant content, a targeted audience, smart placement, and impeccable timing.
Contact us today to learn more about our content marketing services.