Content Marketing – Well it’s nothing new and it’s all about the planning
Many people who own websites and marketing experts claim to be an authority on content marketing, but not many of them seem to be able to give an actual definition of the term.
According to that good old source, Wikipedia, content marketing is described thus:
“Content marketing is an umbrella term encompassing all marketing formats that involve the creation and sharing of content in order to attract, acquire and engage clearly defined and understood current and potential consumer bases with the objective of driving profitable customer action”.
“Content marketing subscribes to the notion that delivering information to prospects and customers drives profitable consumer action. Content marketing has benefits in terms of retaining reader attention and improving brand loyalty”.
So that’s it in a nutshell really, but if handled badly, content can do as much harm to your business as good. It’s really all about developing a strategy and consistently monitoring the impact that your content delivers.
So if your content is dull, uninteresting, reads badly or does nothing to engage your customer or provide a call to action, then really there’s no point having it. After all, having a bad online presence is even worse than having none at all.
How to create content that rocks
- Mix it up – don’t just provide content from your blog, think silly pictures, whitepapers, anything that gives value to your company.
- Use social properly – social media is a valuable marketing tool in which you can get your content noticed; it’s essential to ensure that your followers are engaging so adapt and learn as you go along. Inspire people to click like, keep it simple and maintain your brand’s ‘personality’. Social media channels are renowned for being friendly and the best marketers know that interaction with fans is key.
- Passion – you know your business better than anyone else, if you didn’t have a passion for that business, you wouldn’t be in it. This is something that it’s vital to get across if you want your followers to believe in you and your product or service.
- Innovative – try to come up with content that is forward-thinking and innovative, things that will excite your followers and therefore drive engagement.
Is it all about social media marketing then?
A resounding NO! Content should be fed from your site first and foremost and then social media posts feed from this, as well as the other stuff you post on social (mix it up, remember). . Having a downloadable whitepaper on your site will help you to not only establish an authoritative voice in your industry, but it will also help build up your email list so that you can send out newsletters. It’s a call to action, something that the customer wants and needs and that you can provide well-written data on that is backed up by facts and figures.
Whilst whitepapers can be expensive, the ROI can be significant, so it’s definitely worth investigating, unless you have the time and skills to write your own. However, it’s better to commission a whitepaper and ensure that it’s engaging whilst informative, not particularly an easy task.
Content should also focus on your target audience and be easy to find, it’s not much use having all of this excellent, engaging and goal-driven content if you can’t get found. Invest in time or an agency into doing your SEO; this is something that is constantly changing at the moment, so it’s as well to have an expert on your side if you’re not that clued up.
What not to do
- Don’t be overly opinionated or argue points with potential customers, be open to what they are saying and if need be, nicely labour your point, but not too much. Remember that your followers are people who are interested in what you have to say, but also have opinions of their own, which you should listen to.
- Don’t unashamedly plug your product on every single social media management post and remember that blogs should be industry driven, not about how great you are – that’s a sure-fire way of losing readers very quickly. Of course, you can mention your product socially, but not every post, like I said, mix it up with funny images, regular and video infographics, stats, whatever your audience seems to enjoy the most.
- Don’t write your content yourself if you can’t write. It’s that simple. Not only will you find that readers are immediately disillusioned, but thin content or copied will cause you to lose traffic and find your search engine optimisation going south as you plummet down Google rankings.
It could be said that content marketing services are something of a buzz at the moment, but content marketing been around for a while, in one incarnation or another, it’s just come more to the forefront since the social media explosion.
It’s important to plan your strategy as eventually you’ll find yourself running out of ideas. Set up a work/spreadsheet and brainstorm topics, keeping a keen eye on the ones that work and ticking them off for future coverage. Have a staff meeting once a week to go over the strategy and if it’s not working, then more brainstorming is in order.
Also, remember, one of the most important aspects of content is quality so ensure that it’s well written at all times and images/graphics are equally good.
Need help with your content and delivery? Hire us for social media optimisation.