Content Marketing Basics For Your Business
There are plenty of content marketing basics that you can implement into your business’s strategy.
But first of all, what is content marketing? Content marketing is the process of creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content that builds a business’s online presence. To be competitive in today’s market, it is quintessential to have a solid content strategy in place. It is undoubtedly one of the most vital tools that can help you achieve your business’s objectives.
The goal of content marketing is to attract customers and grow brand awareness. You can target new clients through fresh and engaging content. Whatever industry you may be in, a robust content marketing strategy is critical for two reasons:
- Businesses in the modern age have a digital footprint and the content you create is your website’s magnet.
- Content marketing is an affordable and easy way to target your audience, helping your business generate more leads quicker and cheaper.
There are many benefits to content marketing: it is excellent for driving traffic and it’s cheaper and more effective than outbound marketing. Content marketing has proven to be a great strategy to improve conversion rates, and it increases brand recall leading to better overall engagement.
Here are some statistics on the usage and effectiveness of content marketing:
- 82% of marketers actively use content marketing. (HubSpot State of Marketing Report, 2021) (Source: https://www.hubspot.com/marketing-statistics)
- Over 60% of digital marketers believe in creating a piece of content per day.
- 73% of companies that spend from 10% to 70% of their total marketing budget on content marketing were very successful https://www.semrush.com/blog/content-marketing-statistics/
- Content marketing helps in saving around 62% of the money as compared to traditional marketing.
A good content strategy can help you decide what content to create, when to create and what platform to create it on.
So, if you’re a business looking for a content marketing strategy, how do you go about implementing a strategy that works?
Here we share some content marketing basics for creating a robust and effective content marketing strategy:
Set Your Business Objectives
All marketing practices and strategies are created to achieve business objectives and generate income. Before you start building your content strategy, you need to understand the business objectives and your reasons for embarking on your content marketing journey. Doing so helps make sure that everyone is on the same page, and that the whole team has the same expectations of what content marketing can achieve for the business.
So, what are the common content marketing objectives? Here are some of them:
- To be at the top of the search engines with quality content
- To increase brand authority
- To reach new customers
- To increase and nurture email subscribers
- To improve customer retention
- To foster customer loyalty
- To build interest groups for remarketing
Different objectives may require different types of content. You can do interviews with thought leaders to showcase your brand authority while also doing giveaways and random drawings to foster customer loyalty. Building a strategy by focusing on your objectives will be more effective and result-oriented.
Focus on the Users
Even search engines evangelize one thing: focus on the users and all else will follow. This is true with content marketing as well. The guiding principle in content marketing should be to create user-centric content.
User-centric content is material that fulfills the intention of the user. These are essentially content that users need, that they find important and are useful to them. It is the kind of content that addresses their pain points. If your content solves your users’ issues and addresses their goals, your content will surely get them engaged and shared, driving the best results for your business. People tend to share content that resonates with them and can actually fix their problems.
Set your content so it becomes your target audiences’ go-to website for resources. If they find your content helpful and valuable, they could be enticed to bookmark your site, subscribe to your newsletter, and purchase your products or services.
Know What Your Customer Wants
Content marketing is one of the most effective ways to reach your target audience. But before you get started, ask yourself the question: who are you creating your content for? Your content marketing will succeed only if you are able to clearly define your target audience.
Learning who your target audiences are is crucial to ensuring that your business can get your message across to the people that matter most. If you create content without focusing on your audience’s requirements, then it becomes difficult to grab their attention and increase engagement.
To help you learn about your target audience, ask the following questions:
- Who is your primary audience (your intended audience) and secondary audience (people you could expect to come in contact with your message)?
- What are the demographic characteristics of those most likely to take the desired action? Get down on the ground or use all your analytics tool to identify the characteristics of your audiences. Content that resonates with young Gen Z audiences starting their careers will be different if you are creating content for upscale, sporty baby boomers.
- How do your audiences think? Research about their lifestyles, attitudes, personality types, even their interest and hobbies. The more you know your audiences, the more you will be able content they find compelling.
- What are their problems, frustrations and challenges? What are their pain points and needs that you can address?
With this information, you can create a clear picture of who your audiences are. You can start building their personas and start to define their needs. This will make the job of figuring out what marketing messages work with them and which format of content will be most effective at reaching them.
Use All Content Forms
In today’s digital age, content goes beyond the typed words. There are several different forms of content that the users engage with. Here are some of the formats of content:
- Articles or blog posts
- Pictures and infographics
- Gated content
The South African PR and communications agency CF Communications created an infographic showing seven types of content forms that can help make your content “feel more authentic, engaging, and tailored to your audience.”
To succeed in content marketing, you do not only choose the topics that resonates with your audience, but also coming up with a content distrprepare them in different formats that stand the best chance to be consumed and shared.
Repurpose Your Content
A successful content marketing strategy depends on the quality, originality and relevance of the content that you created. However, creating good content is not easy and can be challenging especially, if you are working on a limited budget. This is where repurposing your content comes in.
Repurposing your content into several different formats is an effective way to squeeze more return on investment out of every piece of content you have created. It allows you to reach a wider audience without adding a lot of work saving you time and money. For example, one blog post could also be re-created as a video, a podcast, and potentially an infographic.
Recycling or upcycling your content will also help keep your content fresh and relevant. You can go back to an old blog post that may seem dated to you, and create some graphics or video and that old content will be given a new life.
Here are some benefits of repurposing your content:
- It allows you to have content that may be more suitable for different platforms. With content for different distribution channels, you can easily grow your audiences for each type of content.
- Since you are not creating something from scratch, you can maintain a more regular publishing frequency.
- It enables you to reach a wider audience that may not be accessible with the original content format.
Use Best SEO Practices
How is any website relevant for anyone if users cannot find it? Afterall, your content is only as good as the number of people it reaches. This is why content marketing and search engine marketing (SEO) goes hand-in-hand: content can help drive traffic and improve your rankings, while SEO helps people find your content.
When you write for the web, it is critical that you follow the best SEO practices and optimize your content for the search engines. Google typically ranks your website via the use of optimized copy, and it must deem your content to be authoritative, useful and relevant to the searchers.
An essential element of SEO that you need to employ in your content marketing is keyword research. Research the topics and keywords that search engine users are typing in Google to find the content that you are creating, and use these keywords in your content (without overstuffing them).
In this infographic on SEO strategies, search engine success starts with aligning your content with search intent. Google’s primary goal is to surface the sites that satisfy search or user intent, and your aim should be at the top of the search results for queries that matter most to you. When you create your content, you need to be cognizant of the goal of the user trying to find your content:
- Are they looking for specific information? (informational)
- Are they looking for a specific website or app? (navigational)
- Are they looking for a specific product but no final decision has been made yet? (commercial)
- Are they planning to buy? (transactional)
Plan Out Your Content Distribution Strategy
Publishing content is only the first step: a content distribution strategy will make sure that your content is spread far and wide to reach as many of your target audiences as possible. Where should you publish and share your content is a critical element in getting the best possible results for your content marketing strategy.
An effective content distribution strategy involves promotion of your content through various channels using a variety of media formats. In choosing the best channels to distribute your content, find out where your target audience is most engaged. Experiment and test where most of your audience hangs out, making sure you carefully track your posts so you can analyze the channels where you get the most traffic, engagement and conversions.
Understand Content Marketing Trends
As a content marketer, you need to be aware of the latest trends in order to be able to compete in this field. With the growing prominence of digital marketing strategies, the world of marketing is continuously evolving and new ways to reach audiences and get their attention are gaining ground.
Here are some of the most important trends in content marketing that you need to be aware of:
- Short form video reigns supreme, and it has been the primary form of media used within any content strategy
- Growing importance of strategic keywords as part of search engine optimization efforts
- Increased usage of podcasting to reach new audiences
- Big shift to championing social responsibility
- Continued popularity of virtual and hybrid events including webinars and lectures delivered digitally
- Infographics remain a favorite content format as it is highly effective in capturing and retaining the attention of audiences
In addition to these trends, you need to stay up-to-date and informed on what is happening in your industry.
Content marketing has gone from a hot new marketing buzzword to an essential marketing strategy for every business out there. Indeed, content is king in helping you build trust and generating awareness about your business. In today’s world, customers expect high quality and consistent content from their favorite brands – and content has become an important tool to help you develop relationships, improve conversions, and generate leads.
Content marketing is at the core of the services offered by Growth Skills. We specialize in setting up your content strategy and create high-quality content to amplify your online reach. Our company has been shortlisted for 2022 Global Content Strategy of the Year from our content marketing work. Contact us today to learn more about our digital marketing services.
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