Not all of us have marketing knowledge, and it can be a difficult thing to learn. Traditional marketing is on the way out, and we are having to learn new techniques as time goes on. Digital marketing is vastly becoming the way of the future. As content creators, we need to be on top of our game! The words content and especially marketing can be intimidating, but they do not have to be. I am going to introduce the concept of content marketing to you, and help you understand it better.
First off, what is content marketing?
It is not as scary as you may be imagining, so do not worry! This is essentially creating content, and then promoting it to the world. I told you it was nothing to worry about! Content marketing is a business process, believe it or not. It focuses on creating, and distributing rich, consistent, and relevant content. Content marketing is focused on an exact audience. Finding that exact audience allows you to build relationships based on trust. This allows you to become a resource to your audience, not just a content creator. Content marketing is meant to stimulate interest. Even if you do not having something to sell at the moment, this is a great way to drive an audience to eventually become customers, or promoters.
What counts as content?
Content is anything that you put out into the world. This can be blogging, emails, websites, social media, and even print work. Content is anything that stimulates interest. It can be a service or product you offer, or it could easily be on a topic of your choosing. If you want to create more business, then you need to be creating content. If you are worried about your ability to create exciting or original content, then ask yourself this. Have you ever posted an image on Instagram? Have you ever updated your Facebook status? That is content. While content marketing seems out of reach, something as simple as a status update is incredibly easy.
Turning strangers into our friends
If my education has taught me anything, it is that everything has a cycle. If you have an familiarity with digital marketing, then you probably have an idea about this method. You need to attract customers which will turn them into visitors. We do this by creating content, using keywords, and having a social media presence. When you promote content, someone will find it, and you want them to enjoy that content. After they become visitors, we need to turn them into leads. Leads are created through forms, call to actions, and landing pages. These allow us to collect information from our audience, and that allows us to connect with them. We want to empower our potential customers, build relationships that can stand the test of time, and educate them as well as entertain them.
Turning friends into our customers
Not everyone wants to sell through their online content, but this for those of us that do. There are so many different methods for consumers to purchase information, but you want them to pick you. By utilizing customer relationship management software, and email, we can create customers. We have the ability to show our audience what we have to offer them, and what they can expect from us. Depending on your skills, this is something that will vary with everyone. With luck we can have people promote our content. We can encourage our audience to promote our own content through social monitoring, sales content, and surveys. No content means nothing to deliver to your audience, so we need to always have something new and exciting waiting in the wings.
What kind of return can we expect from content marketing?
So glad you asked! There are many benefits that we can receive through this strategy. The most important benefit is going to be connection with your audience. As I mentioned, we can turn strangers into not only customers, but brand ambassadors in a way. Whenever you enhance your connection, you will always see a growth in reach. If you are unsure what that is, reach is how many people we can….well…reach. This type of content is great for SEO too, and if you are unsure about SEO, read my post all about it! Since we are creating a connection with our audience, they will view us as a resource not just another blog! Becoming a source for our readers can also increase our visibility, and our overall traffic we can expect to have.
How do we create this kind of approach?
All content starts with the story we are telling. Knowing what we want to tell is a great way to be able to come up with ideas that matter. We all have some daydreams, but what we need to focus on are ideas that are actually possible. Create long term plans with some feasible ideas. Knowing where you want to be a year from now is going to create a path for you. A year may seem like a long time away from now, but we all know how time flies. Once you have goals, then you can identify a game-plan. Now that we have our plan together, we can focus on the content. This is where you can learn how to become a great writer, and really it is not that hard. As someone who never expected to write for a living, trust me on this one. The more you write, the easier it will become.
Getting our content out into the world…
Promoting our content can make us feel uncomfortable. You do not want to shove your content onto those who may not care, but we still want to connect with the audience that does care. Repurposing our content is essential for anything we write. Making sure the information is correct, relevant, and actually useful to our audience should always be important to you. Promoting effectively is another important topic. Making sure that we are spreading our content across the right channels, with the right keywords, and to the correct readers seems scary. With the comes the need to analyze and measure our content. Find out what information is attracting attention, and through which platform. Not only does this help eliminate strategies that my not be working, you can also focus on your growth.