Gone are the days when companies relied on salespeople knocking on doors and cold calling potential customers to close a deal. While these practices still exist today, marketing has shifted to strategies that are more sustainable and cost-effective in the long run. Instead of chasing down prospects, content marketing is all about establishing thought leadership to draw people towards your brand. You want to produce content that resonates with your audience and speaks to the different stages of the buyer journey.
What is Content Marketing
There are many reasons why companies invest in content marketing. The top priorities for content marketers are generating quality leads, attracting website traffic, and improving brand reputation.
While there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all content marketing strategy, understanding your audience is key to success.
Content marketing is a strategy that supports inbound digital marketing. If your business is based on inbound marketing, then content becomes the anchor for it.
You create content to take people through a journey. The buyer journey relates to acquisition. The customer journey relates to growth and expansion. You need to understand these two journeys in the context of your company and craft content that speaks to every stage of the funnel.
Informing your audience and delivering a sales pitch
In an inbound marketing context, content is really about thought leadership. It’s designed to draw people towards your brand and use you as a source of learning. At the end of the day, you want to give your audience an informed opinion.
Content marketing is not about delivering sales pitches. You need to be subtle. You have to ask: Who is your audience and what matters to them? Understanding your audience is the first step.
Customer testimonials, case studies, and success stories are all pieces of content that work really well with your audience. It’s all about giving real examples so that people can envision themselves using your solutions.
Don’t just spit out a bunch of facts. Tell stories! It’s more convincing.
The success of your content marketing strategy
First, you need to understand the journey that people are taking with your company. How they identify problems, learn about your products, and make decisions will dictate the kind of content you need to create.
There are many ways to track the success of your content marketing. You can track the page views and look at how much time people are spending on your content. You can also measure the engagement. Are people sharing your content on social media? Are other websites referencing your content or giving you backlinks?
If you have great quality content, you really understand your audience, and your content is highly valued by them, you’ll stand out. Just look at some of the content out there on the internet. Not all of that is great and some of the content is not even good.
You don’t need to be unique or sound different from everyone else. That’s not the issue. You want to deliver the goods and be relevant to your audience.