When you hear content marketing, what do you think that means?
Do you think it's just posting pictures on your Instagram or Facebook pages?
Well, Bill Gates didn’t famously say, “Content is King” for no reason, but what did he actually mean?
Want to watch the video where I explain this? Click here
Today I explain what exactly is content, why you need a plan and strategy behind it and how to create content that drives engagement and conversion for your business!
“Content Marketing is all the Marketing that’s left.” ~So says Seth Godin and many other marketing experts.
But what exactly is it?
Content Marketing is a type of marketing that involves the creation and sharing of online material (such as videos, blogs, and social media posts) that does not explicitly promote a brand but is intended to stimulate interest in its products or services.
It also creates a journey through the sales funnel for your customers that drives them from awareness to desire and ultimately purchase & post purchase advocacy.
In the last year, a majority of organizations changed their targeting/messaging strategy and/or editorial calendar, based on the massive shift online, yet only 34% reexamined their customer journeys.
When you’re getting started with content marketing, you might feel overwhelmed with the number of things you’re adding to your to-do list, because No, it isn’t just posting pictures on your social media platforms..
Researching your audience.
Understanding their pain points and how you solve a need for them.
Publish new content that speaks to them the right way.
Track the results.
Amend & Repeat.
The only problem? You’re doing all of that on autopilot. You don’t have a content strategy that tells your entire team what to do. You’re working based on assumptions and probably have a backlog of low-quality content you’re not sure what to do with.
Digital Marketing, Content Marketing, Content Strategy, where does it all end, and how do you get started??
Let’s look at what is content strategy:
Content strategy is the process you take that ends in publishing effective content.
It’s important to note that “effective content” is relative to your own north star metric. That could be more traffic, a rush of email sign-ups, or more revenue from your products.
When we refer to content strategy, it’s the whole act of creating, planning, and optimizing content that helps work towards your business goals.
And in this you are making sure your content is driving the journey through the sales funnel for your customer to have an amazing experience with your brand or business.
Because let me pause here quickly, you might be thinking, but I will just have ads that drive leads to my business, why do I need to spend all my time on content as well, especially since it doesn’t bring in direct money…..
Well, it does actually, but long term.
And marketing is all about the long game.
You might have customers now based on previous ads and marketing tactics, but if you are not consistently spending time on your digital marketing strategy & content, your customers will slowly disappear, and the pool from which you can drive ads becomes smaller and smaller.
But having a content strategy and applying content marketing to your business, you grow your business organically as well, you drive the credibility home to your customers, and then when you want to place ads, they do better because your business has shown interest and interaction from the audiences on the social media platforms.
Because when it comes to algorithms, the most important thing you need to know and keep in mind is that the algorithm favours great content that the platform users like/ interact with and find valuable. THEN only will your content be shown to more people and your ads will perform better.
Without content, all other marketing efforts will fall flat.
Basically meaning that “Content is fire. Social media is gasoline.”
And according to VP of Marketing for Neustrat, Julie Fleischer,
“Content Marketing provides 4x the ROI of our traditional marketing spend.”
So not only does content strategy paired with smart marketing provide these results, but a strategy also allows your team to know what is going on and they can implement the tactics to ensure the strategy is successful.
Then as we look at content marketing again, and we now know that content marketing is the process of planning, creating, distributing, sharing, and publishing content to reach your target audience.
We can then also see how it can boost factors like brand awareness, sales, reach, interactions, and loyalty.
Great content can also:
Educate your leads and prospects about the products and services you offer
Build relationships between your customers and business that result in increased loyalty
Show your audience how your products and services solve their challenges
Create a sense of community around your brand & create the KNOW, LIKE & TRUST Factor.
Marcus Sheridan says; “Great content is the best sales tool in the world.”
So let me pause here and quickly check in, how do you currently post your content, and how do you get new leads in your business?
Is there a plan, a strategy and intent behind what you post on not just your social media, but your website, in your newsletter, and your freebies that you are using to draw in your email list?- Let me know in the comments
And did you know that of the activities organizations outsource, 75% outsource content creation.
Meaning they see the work it requires, and need the experts to make sure it is done right.
So then let’s look at the different types of Content Marketing
There are many types of content marketing that you may choose to incorporate in your content strategy — here are some of the most common:
1. (The platform) Social Media Content Marketing
With over 3.6 billion global social media users, it’s easy to understand why so many businesses invest in social media marketing. There are a number of platforms (e.g. Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Youtube, Twitter,Tiktok, Snapchat) to work with and several ways you can create and share content on each of them (e.g. photos, live videos, pre-recorded videos, stories).
2. (The specific information) Infographic Content Marketing
Infographics display content, information, and data in an easy-to-understand, graphic format. With a mix of simple wording, short statements, and clear images, infographics are a great way to effectively communicate your content in an educational manner. They work well if you’re trying to distill an educational and/ or complex topic down so all audience members can understand it.
And you will then use this type of content on social platforms, within a blog, in your newsletter or as a pdf freebie even.
3. (Platform & type of content) Blog Content Marketing
Blogs are a powerful type of inbound content and allow for a lot of creativity in terms of their purpose and topic. With a blog, you can do things like promote other internal and external content and blog articles via links, add social share buttons, and incorporate product information. It adds to the right keywords on your website, meaning you can gain ranking in search engines; and it allows for another way to display your authority and build credibility with your audience.
4. (Platform & type) Audio Content Marketing
A 2020 survey found that 49% of 12-to-32-year-olds in the U.S. had listened to a podcast within the last month, with an average of six listening hours a week. For this reason, many businesses and media outlets have began creating and sharing their own podcasts. And with the recent rise to fame of Clubhouse which is primarily an audio based platform, we can see how popular this format is.
Podcasts or audio content also allow for a lot of creativity as they can be about any topic of choice. Additionally, you determine other factors related to the podcast such as cadence of episodes, who's on the podcast, where you advertise the podcast, and how long episodes are.
5. (Type of content) Video Content Marketing
According to Wyzowl research, 69% of consumers say they prefer to learn about a brand's product or service through video. And People are twice as likely to share video content with their friends than any other type of content.
Additionally, video marketing can boost conversions, improve ROI, and help you build relationships with audience members. You may choose to share your video content on social media platforms, landing pages, or on a co-marketer's website.
6. Paid Ad Content Marketing
Paid ads can help you reach a broad audience and allow you to position yourself in all of the places you want to be seen — paid ads are especially beneficial when paired with inbound marketing. You can use paid ads to promote the content you have worked so hard on, so you share that with a wider audience, and for your audience they see great information about your brand instead of just a hard selling ad.
There are many places you can share paid ads including on social media, landing pages, banners, and sponsored content.
7. Influencer Content Marketing/ Collaborations
You can also work with influencers that have access to an audience similar to yours, and ask them to create content that will drive your brand or business within their following, and add exposure to your brand. It is important here to look at alignment of their brand with yours aesthetically/ purposely and of course audience.
You can also look at potential partners who are in a parallel industry and who you can leverage to create content together & reach their audience to widen your reach and brand awareness.
So do we see now how involved content can get, but also WHY it is so important for your overall business & marketing strategy to have great content!
If this article has given you any AH-HA moments, then please like and share it.
And if you maybe need help with your content marketing or content strategy, don’t fear we can help you!
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