The Content Marketing Institute, which is an online resource for information on everything marketing related, defines content marketing as…
“Content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and acquire a clearly defined audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action”
The key word here is ‘valuable’ content; content that will speak to your customers, content that they want and need, maybe information that solves a problem they have. In order to do this, you need to know your existing customers and research and get to know your prospective customers, so you can deliver that all important content. It may take some time to get it right, but when you do, you will have the opportunity to expand your business, build your reputation and ultimately be known as an expert in your field.
Once you can provide the right kind of content, it brings much more to your ‘table’.
More traffic to your website
If you can solve a problem that your customers have and write about it on your website, when potential customers search online for a solution, they will visit your site. Depending on what you do, that could lead to a sale or a request for your services…and they are likely to return to your site in future.
If you can find a way to tailor your content to your target customer’s needs and wants, they will trust you and you will get repeat business.
When a person finds a site they like, that speaks to them personally, or they feel that it speaks to them personally, they will return again and again. And if they are returning, they are more likely to turn into customers. As everything is online these days, we all turn to the internet if we want to buy something; I like to read about what I want to buy first and find out as much as I can about that product before I buy it. I am more likely to buy from a business that knows what they’re talking about and one that seems to know my needs.
Enhances your brand
It sounds a bit rude to say this, but it is fundamentally true – people are generally interested in themselves, in their likes and needs. This isn’t about being selfish, it’s human nature. When someone first looks at your website or interacts with your business, they are not in the least bit interested in your brand, no matter how hard you’ve worked on it. They are more interested in what you can do for them. If you provide something that makes their life easier, less stressful, and cost-effective and generally entertain them, they will then become interested in your brand as they will see it as something they relate to.
If you are consistently publishing new, unique content on your blog or website and then promoting it on social media, more people will get to see your name and start to relate to the things you write about. If they like what they see, they’re more likely to tell their friends and so your audience starts to grow and they become more aware of your brand.
Content marketing is cheaper than other forms of marketing
The title of this last section basically says it all. If you can research and write your content yourself, it is more economical as you’re not spending money on getting someone else to do it for you. You’ll also learn so much from the research you do, that you’ll find more content as you go.
When you publish your content on your blog or website, make sure that you promote it on every social media site that you have…with maybe a jig around of the title or introduction. You can also contribute to larger sites to get your name out there.
Finally, with content marketing, you are attracting customers to you because they’re interested in what you have to say…and ultimately they will come back again and again.
If you want to influence your audience to your way of thinking and to look at your products or services, you must provide them with something they want or need, be their solution, show them that you provide valuable content and that you value their custom.
Images courtesy of 1-3 ) Stuart Miles, 4) David Castillo Dominici 4) Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net