The media landscape is constantly changing with consumers moving toward digital platforms as opposed to traditional. The circulation figures for traditional media outlets have been on a continuous decline, while digital platforms have seen a substantial increase. With that being said, companies need to keep up with the trends and be smarter in how they engage with and sell their brand to the consumer.
Smart marketers understand that traditional marketing is becoming less and less effective by the minute, and that there has to be a better way to appeal to their target audience. Many people believe that marketing is just about advertising or sales.
However, marketing is everything a company does to acquire customers and maintain a relationship with them. Even the small tasks like writing thank-you letters, playing golf with a prospective client, returning calls promptly and meeting with a past client for coffee can be thought of as marketing. The ultimate goal of marketing is to match a company’s products and services to the people who need and want them, thereby ensuring profitability.
But what is 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 — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action”.
Content marketing is fast becoming one of the most Googled terms for marketers, and with 93% of organisations doing everything they can to produce awesome content, it’s here to stay. But how can you be sure that you’re getting it right?
Both B2C and B2B marketing specialists agree that it is more challenging nowadays. Customer expectations are higher, competition is greater, consumers are flooded with marketing messages daily and it’s easy for customers to compare prices and switch allegiance.
Ultimately content marketing is driven by quality content.
Those who invest in content marketing can win big, but only if they do it correctly. The kind of content that is important to implement is:
- Engaging: The best kind of content is the kind that provokes and engages. If your content is not stimulating in one way or another, it will be difficult to reap the real benefits of content marketing.
- Educational: Panda 4.1 has proved to us that educational content wins big in the search engines. Education is valuable, so creating content that educates your audience is key to winning with Google.
- Fresh and Timely: When it comes to content marketing, timing is everything. Keep your content fresh and ahead of the curve every week. Stale content not only looks bad to your audience, but it can also negatively impact your ranking on Google.
- Answering Questions: Hammering home the question/answer topic, this kind of content marketing always scores with your audience. Answering the needs of your audience will keep them coming back for more.
The key objective is to not directly sell to a reader, but give the consumer an idea of why the product is good and how it will benefit them. It leaves consumers to make a decision on whether the product is right for them to then make a purchase, but it is the businesses job to write the compelling material, good enough to make them want to buy it.
When it comes to online business today, content marketing is a cornerstone for attracting customers and maintaining a customer base. Although businesses may employ different strategies in regard to content marketing, the goal is essentially the same–to increase business. When you market your content effectively, you should see that reflected on the bottom line.
Written by Sithembinkosi Tlale