What is content marketing?
Content marketing is an approach to create and distribute the marketing message (Indeed, contents !!) that educates, informs and engages the target audience via serving information they need Before making a certain decision.
The goal of contents is not to sell directly, all the time.
That also varies in generating mass attention, acquiring qualified leads, nurturing them and directing that potential interest to the end goal. A Purchase.
Unlike traditional marketing, content marketing focuses on creating a connection with your potential/existing audience.
In a simple mean, Content marketing is meant for improving customer engagements also brand awareness via continuous content delivery and contributing to long-term relationships with the audience.
Also read: Elements that define the Quality Content
Why is content marketing important?
So before we dive into more details, a simple question for you…
Why do you want to perform content marketing ??
“…because my competitors are doing it.”
Good one. But I’ll give you better.
“…because someone is searching for information, for the products you sell.”
As said earlier, content conveys information. That information is a push, a base for every potential buyer before making a purchase decision.
Here are the most common reasons, a big why’s showing that content marketing is important for your business…
1 It addresses your audience’s needs.
Identifying the audience’s information need, you better connect with them through the right message. Personalized content, that something you need to create and distribute to make it effective marketing campaigns.
Because you aim to answer their demands, and content helps you to do so.
2 Focuses on purchase behavior.
Product purchases or even service inquiries won’t happen anyway. There’s always a process, going along that probably your sales team doesn’t know.
The process is called a Buyer’s journey.
Every content you create, fuels your audience’s interest and increases it by the time. Remember, the content has to create as well maintain those interest in your products, in your Brand.
3 Helps improving Brand trust and Brand loyalty
The reason content delivers that trust in your brand, in your offerings…just because it follows the Customer-centric approach. It prioritizes customers’ needs, above selling it anyway.
Content creates a win-win situation for the company as well for the audience. Which enables two-way communication, the audience can easily connect with a company and can feel that trust of the Brand.
4 An effective Lead generation campaign
Not every advertisement, whether it’s on television or on Facebook or on youtube, are taken as informative so useful. To every audience, who spends some free time and wants entertainment.
It purely depends on what you are promoting and to whom. Also not an effective way to acquire qualified leads, if you don’t know what they want actually.
On the other way, content marketing aims at personal interest and information needs.
Your personalized message instantly grabs their attention and lets them inquire about your offer.
5 Supporting Sales funnel
Consider the fact that, contents always take time combined with strategies and marketing efforts, before showing its impact.
But a profitable outcome is certain.
Content being produced regarding every sales funnel and audience within, chances are high that you will get impressive results.
Every purchase stage, the need for information is quite different and your content targets every of that separately.
6 Marketing through contents are a cost-effective approach
Advertising costs money. But in reality, it cost more money, more time and effort combined.
Talking about both traditional and digital advertising, that requires a big budget and manpower to monitor the performance.
Whereas contents are easy to produce and promote.
But are a result-driven and effective way of business marketing.
How does content marketing work?
You know what is content marketing and also what it brings to your business. So your next question probably will be how it works and what I suppose to know before starting.
So let’s have a look over, how it works and the content marketing process you need to know:
Content curation is a process of finding a content idea and topics to cover while creating. Content marketing is a detailed process and needs some information in hand before starting.
Content curation process involves keyword research and audience targeting, competitors analysis, media selection, content budget, campaign analysis, optimization needs and so on.
Having the right piece of content,is the primary needs.
Make sure you have your brand-centric content on hand that describes your brand well.
Also what your content will cover and for whom it will be. Your content has to be informative and detailed enough to drive specific attention and action afterward.
Created content being shared with the target audience, through different digital media.
You can have a set of content optimized for search engines, for those who search for the information and reach them organically.
Or you can directly share it on social media, For everyone who interacts with your social profiles and audience you already have.
Or further, you can opt for some paid content promotion techniques to present your message instantly to them.
Ok, so your contents are now out there. People will find that anyway, based on the approach you follow.
And that makes a direct interaction, a connection with your brand first.
But a more effective way to build a connection, is to have content placed on your own site.
Don’t forget people always search for the information they need, also for the products they are about to buy.
Depending upon the media contents you produced and promoted…this stage gives a clear idea over how your contents are performing. That results may vary according to the channel you choose.
The number of inquiries, subscriptions, leads or product sales are the indicators of how effective your content campaign will be. Whereas if you aim to generate your brand awareness, you can find it via your social proofs such as brand mentions, profile engagements, or every interaction to your social profiles.
Where to start content marketing?
By now, you know What it is and how it works. Probably you have decided to start, But pondering about where to start.
That leads us to the next section, where we discuss Things to consider while starting your first content campaign.
Your own content approach
Before starting anything else, firstly you need to understand what content marketing means for you (for your business). You must have that “why”, a purpose, aim for campaigns you are about to start.
Content helps you in numerous ways, it can promote your business, increase brand awareness, generate qualified leads and brand trust, so on. But be specific about what your primary goal will be, at the very first step.
Research, Research, and…Research
Ok, so you want to promote your brand and have a desire that more people get to know about your brand.
Probably, you want to see how other brands become well known.
Here you need to perform market research over your top competitors and the industry you serve.
That presents you with the actual impact of content marketing and the clear way to follow for your promotion.
Custom content planning
Once identified, what your competitors are doing. Your approach should be towards how to apply those inspirations and create your custom marketing plan.
And why not?? After all, you are on your way to presenting your brand as unique in the market. So your content needs to be creative plus customized enough.
Also read: Content Marketing Planning
Content calendar creation
On completion of the brainstorming and required analysis, now it’s time to create a content calendar. Depending upon your content goals and its planning you prepare the whole content framework to follow for the next months, or coming weeks.
Your content calendar includes every form of content you are about to produce and promote in between. Just like publication date, it also needs to cover when and who will create the contents.
Content Process: Creation to Distribution
Your content calendar is the complete framework, to keep an eye on the process. Whereas the content process is tracking and keeping eyes on how everything goes.
The content process involves the complete roadmap from creating to distributing on defined media. Again, your content planning must answer every Wh’s from the overall content campaigns.
Analyze and Optimize… continuously
Not every content drives you the same results nor requires the same efforts. By the time, you better know its actual impact and how it served your purpose.
From paid campaigns, you easily find out its performance thoroughly.
While for other content forms, you need to test various metrics, stats to find its influence and watch for optimizing.
So that it accelerates results, you are looking for.
Who are the content marketers?
In between studying what is content marketing, you may come across the phrase “content marketer”, and also curious to know who they are and what’s their role in the entire content game.
So further sharing who are the content marketers and how they contribute to making a content process a success.
In a simple mean, content marketers aim to create and distribute the custom contents, targeting a particular audience’s particular needs and drive profitable business results.
It seems simple. huh!!
But in between that many more activities are involved and strategies to implement from the content marketer’s side. That varies according to own marketing concepts and expertise levels.
Considering your business niche, content marketers follow the customize approach and find better opportunities to promote your business.
Their role involves in-depth industry plus competitors analysis to come up with a unique concept.
That they believe, to achieve.
Adhere to your marketing goal, content marketer design and develop a complete framework, a content action plan.
Not relying on own beliefs and thinking, content marketer provides a full-proof content plan, supported by recent data stats.
From creation to manage or optimize, content marketers are present during entire content execution. And make sure that every content process is going as planned.
Also guiding own team to maximize the content efforts, via strategizing the things in marketing favor.
Content involves a lot of creative thinking and unique concepts to implement.
So a content marketer needs to be a content creator, an innovator having own marketing ideas to work upon.
Text-based or graphical, content creators’ job is to create a notable content.
Every content has some purpose to serve. As a business promoter, a content marketer needs to look for a better way to present own business.
As a business promoter, marketer follows own marketing perspective and shape according to marketing aims.
Like every content presenting results, the role of content marketer involves working with those stats. Evaluation and measuring the results enable them to identify the actual ROI from content efforts.
Also, present better market opportunities with audience insights, through proven numbers.
As a part of digital marketing, marketing with contents is a professional approach to develop a long term relationship with your customers and clients. Whether your B2B or B2C, digital contents are now becoming a requirement for every business model.
That also evolved from just posting random content stuff, for high website traffic and better ranking. Now the audience doesn’t look at what you offer to them, but also look at How to serve them.
But the concept of content is simple to educate, entertain and engage the audience with the brand, instead of direct selling something. Now you understand What is content marketing, so further sharing things to consider before applying in business…
And here’s the last question for you…
When are you starting your first content campaign?
Want to promote your business using contents?? But having the struggle to do so. Or maybe you stuck in between having your own in-house content team. Then we can be your solutions. As a content marketing consultant, we at wordzyx are always there with you during the entire content process and helsp you achieve the marketing purpose you have.
Ketan Parmar, a content strategist and founder of Wordzyx, a content strategy agency from Ahmedabad. Currently working with small businesses and startups, Ketan contributing their Business growth via content strategies plus website optimization, through own proven marketing experiences. He’s on a mission to promote content marketing as an Investment for a business, rather just advertising costs.
Read something more about, Ketan parmar.