Content marketing is one of the many branches of a complete marketing strategy. Content Marketing Institute
describes 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.”
Why Does Content Marketing Matter?
Your content marketing strategy should create resources that your audience will find useful as they search for information related to your products or services. The topics you focus on are meant to establish you as a thought leader on those subjects and within your area of expertise.
Your content marketing strategies are also meant to build trust with your customers. People are tired of being sold to and are so used to seeing ads everywhere they go. Traditional advertising is not as effective as it once was. Creating meaningful brand interactions and a strong reputation
allows you to demonstrate your authority on the services or products you sell, while creating a more meaningful impression. As Forbes
writes, “it is unclear whether [the ability to go viral] increases or reinforces brand loyalty” because trust with a brand, as with any relationship, takes time to build. This is truly where content marketing comes into play.
Is it Worth My Time?
Studies demonstrate that content marketing results in three times more leads
per dollar spent than paid search. Not only are you spending less on ads, but you are also creating more opportunities for clients and similar audiences to find your website and get familiar with your brand. If you feel like you do not have the time to invest in content marketing for your business, consider outsourcing. Companies like Bit-Wizards develop a content marketing plan for you (see what we did there?) so you can focus on running your business day-to-day. Creating effective content takes time, but it is well worth it.
What Kind of Content Counts?
Content can take many forms
. The formats and platforms you choose to use need to be developed based on the way your audience prefers to consume information. Part of creating an effective content strategy includes identifying your key demographic and analyzing what mediums work best for them. Once you establish that you can try:
- Quizzes or Games
- Courses and Slides
- eBooks and Whitepapers
- Visuals and Infographics
Where to Begin?
Once you delve into your buyer personas
and discover where your audience spends their most time online, you will also get an idea of what kind of content resonates best with these groups.
If your company creates products for new parents who are very busy, creating long infographics and eBooks may not get a lot of traffic. In contrast, quick videos or podcasts may be a great way to reach parents who (literally) have their hands full all day.
Uncovering your buyer personas will also help you identify the pain points that you can help your customers with. For example, with the same company for new parents, you may create content related to topics like proper swaddling techniques or baby-led weaning ideas. Additionally, the company may have guests posts or podcast interviews with child developmental experts or pediatricians.
If you are just getting started with content marketing, start by outlining the topics related to your services. For Bit-Wizards, these would be Software Engineering, Managed IT Services, and Digital Marketing. From there, think about the various sub-topics that can branch off from those high-level subjects. You want to create a mix of beginner content and advanced content to speak to customers at different points in the buyer’s journey.
Before you create quizzes, blogs, social media videos, and start a podcast… stop and evaluate. Focus on showing up consistently for your audience in one format. Invest your time wisely by creating a content marketing plan and analyzing what works.
How Does Content Marketing Fit in my Strategy?
As with most aspects of digital marketing, content marketing creates many touchpoints that your customers will interact with as they go through the buyer’s journey. The content you create can be used across different platforms and it can help you build authority online.
Additional content can be gated or require an email to access. This content introduces more people to your funnel
, giving you more genuine leads to send emails or direct remarketing ads to.
Is it Working Yet?
So, you have spent time writing, editing, and publishing content online. It seems like people are seeing it—some are even leaving comments. But, how do you know if it is working and bringing you new customers?
Determine which KPI (Key Performance Indicators) and metrics matter most to your business. You might choose to track leads, web traffic, or sales to determine success. Using a CMS like HubSpot can help you see how your audience interacts with your content and if that impacts their buying choices.
Content marketing is part of the digital marketing marathon. The time invested will pay off eventually, but it all hinges on building a strong relationship with your audience.
If you need help creating a content marketing strategy, contact our friendly digital marketing team to learn more about how content can improve your online presence.