2015 Content Marketing Landscape
Why Content Marketing is Crucial for Success
How important is Content Marketing for your online brand? On a scale of 1 to 10… a great, big 12!
Why? Because consumer behaviour has evolved, and the world of marketing needs to revolutionise (just to keep pace).
The change in how consumers find products & services nowadays, and what influences their buying decisions, has completely altered the market place, with the greatest visible impact clearly seen in SME’s. Where these companies were previously unable to compete against large corporates (with their massive marketing budgets), an opportunity now exists that levels the playing field.
Brands are migrating from traditional and disjointed methods to focused and integrated.
And the result of this continental shift?
Brands are now communicating through Intelligent (Content) Marketing which is more personal and highly targeted – to the extent where even smaller marketing budgets yield positive results.
What is this Content Marketing Hype?
“Content Marketing is a marketing technique of creating & distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.” Joe Pulizzi | CMI
In practice, the essence of Content Marketing falls to Content Creation and Search Marketing (distribution & promotion), or more importantly – optimizing this planned, structured and targeted content so that when your audience searches for solutions online – they find you.
BUT, the results (leads generated) you get at the end of the day are only as good as the Content Marketing plan (strategy) that you follow. And this is the reason behind the need to develop and deploy the right mix of tactics to attract interest throughout the content marketing process.
Guiding this process falls to your Content Marketing Strategy; to focus these tactics through your buyer lifecycle – i.e. drive traffic, generate & nurture leads, enable sales, create customer loyalty and increase revenue – because without the ‘plan’ your anticipated outcome is mostly chaotic.
PRO tip: Your Content Strategy should tie to your core business goals (such as increased profitability; customer loyalty). It should provide measurable results and eliminate the ROI question (which haunts many a marketer).
The Content Marketing Facts
1) Mastering the details:
The likes of Keywords, Links, Site & Page Optimization is typically more effectively managed by those with the experience and skill set. And because of this, there are still a number of marketers who have either not adopted content marketing, or who aren’t doing it very well. Leaving the door wide open to get a leg up on the competition.
2) Resource Investment:
As with all things worthwhile, Content Marketing requires effort, and the bulk of the hard work needs to be done upfront. Depending on your target market, and products/services on offer, it may take a considerable time investment to produce the content and components required to attract leads. However, once key strategic content elements are in place, the process becomes streamlined to deliver sustainable results over time.
3) Versus Tradition:
Content Marketing is less expensive than traditional outbound marketing, and the majority of the required content can usually be created and/or curated from in-house resources.One of the top benefits of content marketing is that leads gained are largely pre-qualified. These individuals are already looking for, or have shown an interest in, your particular product or service, thus drastically increasing your chances of successfully converting the sale.
4) Creates Opportunity:
Lastly, Content Marketing provides a unique opportunity to build ongoing relationships with your customers. Not only does this foster a channel where up-selling and cross-selling is possible, but you can create a community of customers where brand loyalty is a tangible reality.
How to Make Content Marketing Work for You?
How Can You Get Great Results?
By implementing an established technique for success: The Four Pillars of Content Marketing for Business Growth .
This proven process integrates 4 key elements to drive successful growth.
- Content Marketing Strategy
- Content Creation
- Distribution & Promotion
- Measurement & Management
In short, these ‘pillars’ lay the foundation for a winning content marketing approach that returns results.
The marketing environment has changed. Content Marketing is the ideal answer to this change. To be truly successful, you need to follow a pre-set content plan, develop relevant and valuable content, promote your content on the right channels to the right people, and measure your progress on an ongoing basis.
The purpose of this process is not to drive sales, but rather engagement which is aimed at building relationships – customers who KNOW, LIKE and TRUST you. Once this is achieved, natural, sustainable growth follows.
» As always, here’s to your success!