Posted on October 5, 2018 by Matt Morelli
The term content has become prominent in the internet marketing space. Internet marketers, bloggers, and small business owners have come to understand the power of fresh, timely, targeted content. Content has become a valuable way of sharing information about your product and/or services, with the masses.
Content marketing provides you with the opportunity to generate online authority, unlimited traffic, leads, and sales. This validates the famous saying “Content is King”, to a degree.
However, despite the enormous benefits that content marketing offers, it will be a wasteful endeavor without the right tools, approach, and strategy.
We’ve created this simplified guide to be a resource for all the information you need about content marketing. The article provides a complete introduction to the basics of content marketing.
What is content marketing?
The Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing as “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.”
In fewer words, it is a marketing methodology that involves the use of content to achieve marketing goals. Content marketing isn’t just about creating content, but creating content with a clearly defined purpose. For instance, a blog post is a piece of content; however, content marketing involves creating a blog post for specific reasons like brand visibility, driving traffic, and sales (or sales lead) generation. Or, like this post – educating ecommerce professionals about content marketing, in order to bring visibility to your company.
Content marketing takes a different approach from traditional marketing, where customers are interrupted with ads. Content marketing offers free content in exchange for the implied permission to advertise a product to the client. Instead of creating ads to interrupt your customers, you’ll create digital content such as blog posts, infographics, videos, podcast recordings, free guides, and so on. The content that you create, should be content that your customers are interested in reading.
The content could be informative, educational or entertainment content. The underlying factor here is to create content of value that your audience will love to get.
Case in point:
You’re reading a piece of content, written about content marketing, by an insurance company. Why? It has absolutely nothing to do with what we do here, right? Well, because it’s something that is important to a great many companies who sell products. We’re an insurance company that insures parcel. When you sell a product and ship it to a consumer, we insure that shipment. You’re reading this, on our website, and now you know what we do and how we can help you. This is why content marketing is so important. It’s highly likely you’d never have heard of U-PIC Shipping Insurance if it weren’t for this highly targeted content, that you have access to, for free…whether we ever speak, or not.
Why use content marketing?
Content marketing offers plenty of opportunities to achieve your marketing goals and grow your business. Companies are using content marketing to create brand awareness and generate sales successfully.
According to the Content Marketing University, over 89% of marketers who use content marketing attribute their campaign successes to the quality of their content.
Content marketing help you achieve the following:
The level of success that you attain in content marketing is dependent on the quality of your content. You should create content that is engaging and shareable; it should be geared to either inform, inspire, educate, or entertain your audience.
Let’s Get Started!
Determine Your Audience
The first step in content marketing, is to determine who makes up your target market. This will influence your content creation processes significantly.
It’s not unusual to hear people say that they are targeting anyone who can buy their product. But the truth is that if you target everyone, you target nobody. It doesn’t always pay to paint with a broad stroke. You can’t create content that will speak to all categories of people, from adults to kids. You will most likely lose touch with your prospects, hence, the importance of understanding your target audience intimately.
Ask yourself who will most likely buy your products or services. What other things are these people interested in? What is their age group? What is their gender? Is there a salary range that is important? How about geographical locations, is this important to your business? Write down everything that makes up your target audience. This will enable you to to make a more accurate estimation of what you should produce in terms of content, and how to target these people.
Develop a content marketing strategy
Your content marketing strategy will guide your content creation and customer engagement process.
It should define:
The creation process is the most critical aspect of content marketing, here are some characteristics of great content.
Content marketing tips.
Successful content marketing is dependent on one’s ability to create good content to propel customer engagement and generate sales. It’s not easy, but with dedication, it becomes mechanical. If you have any questions, as always, I am very happy to assist. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll have more marketing pointers coming soon!