Creating your content marketing strategy is time-consuming and hard to maintain. However, it’s a proven long term benefit for business growth.
I have been marketing my own and clients businesses for many years, and I can tell you that consistency is the key.
Content marketing can allow you to deliver valuable information to your customers. Providing relevant content also improves your reputation, helps build a community and positions you as an expert.
Content marketing has also shown in studies, companies that are consistently delivering excellent content can:
- Increase traffic to your business by up to 55%
- Create more indexed pages on search engines by up to 434%
- Provide five times more leads
- Costs 62% less than traditional marketing
- Are 13 times more likely to generate ROI
(Sources – DemandMetric, Contently, Deliate Digital and SEMrush.)
Content marketing is a long term strategy and focuses on building relationships with your target market (customers). Also, consistently providing quality content that teaches, explains or helps the customer, and gives a sense of reciprocating loyalty.
Incorporating storytelling in your content can help capture the imagination of your audience. However, don’t feel pressured into trying to create a story for every piece of content you produce.
This beginners guide will give you a better understanding of:
- The definition of content marketing
- Ten popular types of content.
- Content marketing strategy.
- Repurposing content
The definition of content marketing
“Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience – and ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.” CMI (Content Marketing Institute)
Brand positioning in content marketing
A well-defined brand product or service positioning will give you a better platform and a consistent experience for your audience.
An identifiable brand will ensure that wherever your customers find you, the experience is the same. I have covered how to create your brand in a previous post.
The popular types of content
Creating content needs to take into account what your customers prefer. Also, the type of content that is the flavour of the month in terms of distribution platforms.
There is an extensive list of content you can produce that can provide a service for your target market.
This list includes:
- Articles – like traditional newspapers and magazines that publish articles, you can as well. Articles are like blog posts; however, they are for company news, product announcements and any other time-sensitive stories about your company.
- Blog Posts – blog posts have been around for many years now, with over 4.4 million published every day. Blog content is usually informative such as “how-to”, ‘lists”, “answers questions”. Posts educate customers and solve problems.
- Case Studies – case studies usually share customers success and how they achieved that success with your product or service. Combined with a customer testimonial, it reinforces your business as a solution to prospective customers.
- Email Marketing – email marketing is an effective way of reaching your audience (customers & prospects). This type of content creation allows you to curate other pieces of content for your customers and send it directly to their inbox.
- Infographics – infographics are an easy way to deliver data in a visual format. Because infographics are images, they tend to be shared frequently on platforms such as Pinterest.
- Podcasts – over the last few years podcasts have made a steady rise in popularity. The technology in our pockets allows us to listen to podcasts anywhere (you can listen on the move, in the car, on public transport or foot).
- Video – companies that create videos across social media platforms, video sites and their website generate more interest in their business. Videos can help your audience, describe problems and solutions, inform customers who you are (what you do) and sell products or services.
- Social Posts – posting on social media platforms is as essential in content marketing as any other type of content creation. The primary purpose of social media posts is to get attention and higher engagement. Social posts can incorporate text, images and video (live and pre-recorded).
- Website – your website page content delivers who you are, what you do and whom you help. Google’s research a few years ago found that most customers research 9.4 pieces of content before purchasing.
- Messaging Apps – recently messaging apps have become popular to connect directly with customers. The type of content used is questionnaires, quizzes, offers and prizes.
There are multiple types of content you can create (not just the ten listed) that can capture the attention of your target market.
What content formats will you use?
Part of creating a content marketing strategy is choosing and planning the type of content you will produce. It’s always better to start with a list of content types (as listed above) and stick to it.
You should measure each piece of content over time. After all the longer you produce that type of content, the better it becomes. It also allows you to see what content brings more interest and enquiries to your business.
Who are the audience the content is targetting?
Creating content for the sake of it never ends well, so much work for little return. Knowing and identifying the audience that you serve. Where you can find the audience (social media, video platforms, email lists, database) will also help with the type of content, you decide to create.
What problem will you be helping your audience solve?
Having a deep understanding of how your product or service solves your customer’s problem is essential when it comes to content creation.
Most customers take the internet to find a solution to the problem they are facing, whether it be personal or business.
If you can’t explain how your product or service can help them, then they are unlikely to purchase.
So, if you sell technology, the content should inform your customers why yours is better than your competitors, and no, I’m not talking about price.
This approach is used with a service business as well, showing how your service can resolve their issues and what’s unique about it.
Lastly, you can take the same approach within the entertainment and hospitality sectors. Show your customers the value of the experience that they will receive.
Content marketing strategy
A content marketing strategy is the management of all the media you create. I have listed the types of content you can manage earlier in the post.
I’ve also covered how to create a marketing strategy in a previous post.
Having a content marketing strategy and plan will keep you focused on what you’re trying to achieve.
Repurposing your content
Content repurposing is not new; however, it has become more popular in the last five years. The beauty of content repurposing is the ability to create one piece of content and modify it for different media.
Your customers may log into several social media channels each day. Repurposing your content allows you to feed those channels with different types of content formats.
Imagine writing a blog post of fifteen hundred words (minimum requirement for a decent blog post).
Then taking that post and modifying it slightly for voice. You can then use this content as a video script.
If you take several posts on a subject matter, you turn it into an ebook. Take the ebook or a single long-form post and convert the content to a podcast script.
As you can see, repurposing content can cover several ways for users to absorb the information in the format they choose.
And it doesn’t end there when you get creative there are multiple ways to use an original piece of content.
How about using sound bites, phrases or statements from the original post and creating social media posts from them.
Content repurposing helps you to feed the beast that is social media while signalling to the search engine you have new content on your website.
Once you have your system in place of what you can do with an original piece of content, it becomes a “rinse a repeat” process for every piece of new content you create.
In closing, having read this post, you should now be able to understand what content marketing is. And the steps you can take to deliver targeted value and solutions to your customers.
To have success with content marketing for your business, it has to be consistent and add value to your customers.