The Secret to Understanding Content Marketing
Everyone knows “content is king” in business-to-consumer (B2C) and business-to-business (B2B) marketing. For many businesses, content is produced by the team, or individual, that writes to optimize searches to drive online purchases, for posting in blogs and online social communities and via email marketing campaigns.
What is Content Marketing? There are many definitions that can be Googled. Essentially content marketing involves the development of a brand’s messaging or a story that has a purpose directed at a targeted audience. The ultimate goal is to create awareness, build trust and engage with a customer or potential customer.
During the business planning process, target markets are researched and defined. More frequently, businesses find they need to design and document a content marketing strategy. Why? Consumers are interested in the story behind the brand. The goal of documenting a strategy is to make sure a company’s messaging is consistent and interesting so that the targeted audience is attracted and retained.
So what is the secret to understanding content marketing? Knowing how to write compelling (translated ‘creative’) content! This is a skill that involves becoming one’s own publisher and curator of worthy news. By the way, using customers, other non-marketing staff, other bloggers and the media can be tapped as resources for building the ongoing story.
There are many components for creating an effective content marketing strategy, whether for a very small business or large enterprise. A business must understand the customers they wish to attract, their lifestyle, preferences and interests. The business must know its strengths and know what solutions it has for solving a customer’s problem. What delivery system(s) will be used for content delivery; some owners and staff enjoy being in front of the camera and use entertaining videos. Every good content marketing plan includes benchmarks and goals, assigning who is in charge of engaging customers online, and using metrics to gauge success, e.g., increased traffic, leads generation, sharing metrics and onsite engagement are just a few. Lastly, and this is important, repurpose the messaging. If a news worthy item is in the blog this can repurposed and cross-promoted across multiple channels (e.g., company slide presentations, videos, white papers) extending the marketing budget further and increasing brand recognition.
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