The news you read in the morning, to the ads you scroll through on social media; the videos you watch and share to the blogs or websites you come across — content is all around us. The benefits of content marketing are reaped and discovered by businesses every day, with every piece of content they put out there.
Content Marketing is a strategic approach that aims at creating and sharing relevant, informative content, consistently, to attract potential customers, retain existing ones and overtime bring in a profit for your business — both in terms of revenue and customer base.
Unlike a decade ago, when content was only restricted to detailed product information, today it’s more well-rounded and focused on addressing the pain points of customers. The advantages of content marketing are thus more than just driving sales, instead, it’s a means to build brand loyalty, boost engagement and interaction, and most importantly be useful for the customers.
That said, many businesses today are still struggling with driving revenue and customer base through content marketing. So, why is it that only some businesses are reaping the benefits of content marketing? What can a business do to successfully integrate content marketing with other marketing strategies?
Let’s start by understanding the need for content marketing and what it brings to the table for your brand.
The Need For and Benefits of Content Marketing
Content marketing allows you to truly connect with your audience. This, in turn, allows you to boost conversions and revenue. Additionally, you also build trust in your brand through informative and meaningful content.
Effective content, that is optimized for search engines, also helps you get more visibility for your brand. Potential customers searching for the products or services you offer are more likely to get your brand as a search result with the right optimization. Not only will this help you generate new leads but also keep new and existing customers.
Apart from being a great strategy to build a solid customer base, content marketing can set you apart from other competitor brands. You can showcase your brand as an industry leader through thought leadership, influential and informative updates, as well as relevant subject matter expertise.
Lastly, but most importantly, your audience expects great content from you. Consumer behaviour has changed over the years and today they want to do business with a brand that engages and interacts with them.
Now that we understand why content marketing is an absolute necessity for the success of businesses today, let’s take a quick look at the different channels and platforms where you can post different types of content and build a strong content marketing strategy.
Channels and Platforms to Boost your Content Marketing Efforts:
- Social Media Platforms
- Mobile and web applications
- Email campaigns
- Website Blogging (Get WordPress Hosting, and start blogging for your business website)
- Guest blogging
- Community Publishing Sites (Quora, Tumblr, etc.)
- Third-party or partner publishing platforms (Vimeo, Slideshare, etc.)
Types of content you can create:
- Social media posts
… and a lot more!
Top 5 Benefits of Content Marketing:
With so many channels and platforms, and such different possibilities with the type of content you can create you can only imagine the number of advantages of content marketing!
Let’s sum up the top 5 benefits of content marketing:
- Boosts brand visibility, awareness and recognition
- Increases engagement with your audience leading to better customer relationships
- Builds customer loyalty and credibility for both potential and existing customers
- Generates leads and traffic for your blog and brand website
- Gives you a platform to communicate with your audience and position your brand as an industry leader.
7 Content Marketing Best Practices You Must Follow
With so much to do and so much to say, content marketing is truly a vast and exciting opportunity for brands. However, the first rule of content marketing is — Do not create content to sell!
Yes, as absurd as it may sound, your focus while creating content mustn’t be to sell, instead, focus on offering information and value — that will automatically lead to more sales. As a rule of thumb, follow sincere and creative content creation strategies to offer more than just your product or service.
Here are the 7 best practices to follow:
Be consistent — both in terms of how often you create and share content and in terms of how you do it. Find the right voice for your brand that directly speaks to your audience.
Focus on staying relevant. Know your audience’s pain points, their needs and expectations. Understand what they’re looking for and how you can give them relevant answers/solutions. This also includes timely responses to their social media queries/comments.
Being original is key to being noticed. While it’s great to learn from your competitors and see what they’re doing, never be tempted to copy their style of content. Your brand is original, and so must be your content.
Focus on offering value to your customers. They will buy your goods and services if they see the value they get from it. Think of ways you can add value and then build on it.
There are just too many brands and businesses out there and what sets some apart is the level of personalization some build. Treat your relationship with your customers as a personal one, and see the difference that it makes. No one wants mechanical, impersonal or automated relationships, right?
6. Engage and Interact
Don’t just say, listen. Don’t just talk, encourage interaction. Your content must be aimed at starting a conversation. This helps you get the pulse of your audience, honest opinions and feedback, and most importantly makes your customer’s feel heard.
7. Multi-Platform and Multi-Styles
Experiment with different channels and styles of content until you find the ones that work best for your brand. Throw in a mix of different kinds of content to consistently engage and amaze your audience.
Get Ready to Reap in The Benefits of Content Marketing
If “Content is King”, Content Marketing is the king’s army!
Today, with a huge shift in how customers look for and engage with businesses, it’s crucial to ‘deploy the army’ to fight and conquer. Competition is at an all-time high, and only increasing. To be able to stand out and get noticed, an effective content strategy is key.
Always remember to keep your audience as your top priority. How can you offer more value? How can you stay relevant? As long as you’re consistently answering these questions, and following the best practices you’re going to keep winning.
The benefits of content marketing are wide, and many — are you ready to reap them in?
If you have any questions, suggestions or comments please feel free to drop them below. For more on marketing tips, best practices, updates and information, head to our Marketing Blog category.