What is Content Marketing: A Beginners Guide
Today, we are going to talk about content marketing.
What exactly is content marketing?
According to content marketing institute, this is the definition of content marketing: "Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable relevant and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience is ultimately to drive profitable customer action."
So that gives us already a very solid understanding of what content marketing is.
Let's break it down a little bit and discuss things in a bit more detail...
Content is Queen.
In the digital age, content is how you attract people to your business.
The large majority of leading brands in the world have developed and executed a solid content marketing strategy because it works.
The attractive thing about content marketing is that, instead of constantly pitching your products or services through annoying advertisements, you can instead provide relevant and useful information about your industry to your prospects and potential customers by educating them and helping solve their problems.
The benefits of content marketing can be measured, and the most common benefits for enterprises are generally more sales, money saved and better customer retention with more brand loyalty.
And those are just a few.
Companies use many different marketing and advertising techniques to try and sell you stuff. A lot of the time it's just garbage. And annoying garbage at that. Nobody likes to be bombarded by advertising that they are not interested in. Especially when it's not relevant or valuable to your life. if these brands are basically spamming your life.
This is why content marketing is a really unique approach to grow your business.
You can pick people's curiosity and interests through education and information.
Without being spammy.
Provide value first, the sales will come later.
It's All Online.
In today's day and age, it's almost impossible to market and advertise without great content. This is why content marketing needs to be a part of the company process, and not something separate.
It's about telling a story or sharing a journey.
It's about helping people with problems.
It's about providing insight, knowledge and expertise to two others.
It could also just be good old fun.
When you think about content, it's information that needs to be shared. Content is a part of marketing. Before you start thinking about your social media marketing, you shouldn't stay and think about your content marketing strategy.
This content will be shared across social media, but social media is only a channel or channels to distribute your content to different audiences on different platforms.
Think about SEO and search engines. They reward businesses that publish quality content consistently. This is a known fact. These sites build trust and credibility with their audience. You also need content, blog posts and great copywriting. It's about developing a process within your company, to create content, and share the valuable knowledge and insight with your audience.
It could be documenting the processes in your business. Documenting the successes and failures. Sharing customer testimonials and stories.
The important thing to note, is that if you want to start an online business, content is a key component. The content on your website. Which include pictures, and copywriting, and video, and graphics.
You get the point.
What value is being provided when someone consumes a piece of your content?
Sometimes you see something on the internet and you want to avoid it, like annoying ads that pop up when you want to watch a YouTube video.
Other times you get a piece of content that peaks your curiosity and makes you interested in wanting to learn more.
That's the difference.
One piece of content is being forced on you. But the other piece of content engages you and makes you want to consume it.
What Kind of Content Should You Create?
1. Written content or blog posts.
This is simply writing articles based on your niche or industry.
You do research and provide thought leadership in-written format on a website where people can read and consume all of your valuable information. Just the same way you are reading this now. This is a piece of written content.
Infographics or simply graphic images with information on them. They are usually vertical in dimension, and they also generally include statistics information, charts, graphs and text. This type of content requires a designer if you want it to look professional.
You could also try to make it yourself but it would probably take a while and would not be that good. Infographics work while on the internet because it gives the user an overview and insight, using both text and visual graphics to explain ideas.
Remember some people enjoy consuming written content. Other people are visual learners, and some prefer to listen to audio or video.
3. Audio or Podcasts
Podcasts have been growing immensely over the past decade. When I think of a podcast that stands out it's something like the Joe Rogan Experience. Which is also technically a vlog.
Your content can be great because when you speak, it's a bit easier and comes more naturally to two people, than let's say writing a 1500 word article.
Chances are you speak everyday, so speaking and creating audio content might be easier for certain people.
It also allows you to repurpose this audio content into a written format. This allows you to repurpose content and use it in different mediums or on different platforms.
4. Video Content
Video is the future and present. YouTube is massive. There are so many people on the internet creating and publishing videos about their lives and interests. When it comes to video content someone who has really nailed it, is Gary Vaynerchuk. He predicted many things before they came into fruition on the internet. He saw the curve.
Video content is great because people enjoy content that is easy to consume. Video is easy to watch without having to think too much, so this is why it has been so successful.
But also because humans are visual creatures.
We see and experience life very much through our eyes.
5. eBooks or PDF's
Another way people consume content is through reading books. With a digital or physical, books have been with humanity for a very very long time. In today's age, people are creating books as marketing tools.
I'm sure you've seen 1 and offered someone a free pdf in exchange for some information and your email address. This is called a lead magnet, or an ethical bribe. Offering the user something for free in exchange for the email address. eBooks or extremely popular. And so is the use of the readers such as the Amazon Kindle. This is simply another kind of content that you could utilise.
In conclusion, if you want to know the number one secret of content marketing, here it is:
Always aim to add value. That’s the secret. It's not really even a secret, but now you know. We hate advertising, especially when it interrupts you or steals your attention.
If you're unsure of how you can add value through content, start by asking your customers what kind of content would be helpful to them.
What questions do they have that you could answer?
So now that you have a solid understanding of content marketing, it's time to start thinking about your content strategy and how this will benefit your company. If you found this post valuable please share it.
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Till next time...