What is Content Marketing and Why Should You Care?
When it comes to attracting, building and retaining your audience, there’s just one thing that every business leader or marketing professional should have on their mind – effective content creation. Content marketing is a strategy used to not only attract and retain your audience, it’s also the key to moving your prospective customer along the marketing funnel for effective lead generation and sales conversions.
According to a recent report from HubSpot, content creation is a top priority for 80% of marketers. In fact, here’s what marketers are doing:
- 50% are creating and sharing video content
- 47% are sharing images
- 33% are posting blogs and articles
- 30% are sharing infographics
- 28% are investing in podcasts or other audio content
Whether through relevant articles, videos, podcasts or a social media post, content marketing helps your audience to hear your voice above all the rest. Content marketing also gives you a competitive edge when it comes to generating leads for your business. Businesses with blogs produce 67% more leads than other companies on average. To sum it up, content marketing helps to nurture your audience, answer their questions and build trust, which will ultimately help your business to generate more leads and increase sales.
If you want to get your contentin front of the right people, you need astrong content marketing strategy that packs a punch. Here are a few tips to take your business to the next level through strategic content creation.
Establish your goals
When setting goals for your content strategy, you need to make sure that they’re SMART – specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound. Whether the goal is to amplify your reach, increase brand awareness, become a thought leader in your space or generate leads, SMART goals will help you determine if you are on track or falling short.
Create content that tells a story
What is content marketing, but storytelling in disguise. You’re telling your brand’s story and conveying a meaningful message to your audience that leaves them clamoring for more. Here are a few story elements to consider when building content:
- A defining key message to stick to: It’s about content that evokes emotion and gives the audience something to believe in.
- Core values of your company: Remember you “why” and share it with your audience.
- Vulnerability with your audience: Transparency builds trust.
Discover what makes you unique
To uncover what makes you unique, you first must scope out the competition. What drives audience engagement and generates leads for them? Take a long hard look at all competitor content – social media, printed publications, digital marketing, media mentions and website. See what’s working well and how they have evolved over time. Doing a full competitive analysis allows you to see what your competitors are doing right – and what things they are getting wrong.
Post-analysis, put your research to good use by identifying your differentiators and using proven tactics to amplify your message across your communication channels.
Know your audience
If you’re serious about growing and retaining your audience, then your content shouldn’t just be about clicks and likes. You also want genuine engagement, right? The most important thing that you can do for your content marketing strategy is to know your audience. It sounds simple, we know, but if you want your audience to listen to what you have to say, you must first listen to them. In other words:
- Build an emotional connection with your audience. This is the first step to building a community of like-minded individuals. Ask their thoughts, what they’re passionate about and what makes them tick.
- If they have a problem, can you relate and, more importantly, can you help them solve it?
- Conduct thorough market research to learn everything you can about your demographic.
Nailing down who your audience is helps you to know who your messaging is for and who’s listening to what you have to say. You’ll also be able to better plan out your content to increase marketability.
Repurpose your content
Transforming your content into a new format not only gives your current audience a fresh perspective, but it helps you attract new audiences as well. For instance, if a blog post performed well on your website, you’ll want to repurpose that content for a social media post or informative video for YouTube. Instead of creating new content, you can keep your audience engaged by changing the delivery method of your existing content.
Amplifying and repurposing your content to get the most bang for your buck is easier than you think. Get started now with our guide to maximizing content for long-term results.