What Is Effective Content Marketing & How Can It Help Your Business Grow?
Content marketing is extremely popular these days and you have probably heard about it. Indeed, the phrase ‘content is king’ is thrown around quite a lot and it is not an understatement.
This is because content marketing is at the heart of any successful digital marketing campaign. Behind every great brand is a wealth of valuable and relevant content that really connects with the company’s audience.
However, you may not be clear about what exactly content marketing is and how it can help your business grow. We will also show you the various elements of effective content marketing so that you can start implementing these in your business today.
What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing is a marketing strategy focused on creating, publishing and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.
In digital marketing, content marketing is done online through the use of social media, infographics, blog posts and videos, and ebooks and other downloadable or interactive tools that share your brand and expertise with your ideal buyer.
What are the Elements of Effective Content Marketing?
Not all content marketing is equal. For you to get the desired results from content marketing, you need to ensure that it is effective and efficient.
After hearing that ‘content is king’, you start making random posts on your social media pages in the belief that it will help your business.
However, as you will see just now, that is a waste of time and it will no doubt leave you frustrated.
Effective Content Marketing is Well-planned and organised.
At the outset, it’s important to note that effective content marketing is a strategic and systematic marketing approach.
You first need to develop clear goals and then produce content that moves you closer to your objectives and your overall digital marketing strategy.
This means that you first need to seriously take some time out to plan your content marketing strategy.
So for example, if you have a feature on your product or in your service that sets you apart from your competition, your goal will be to make sure that your customers are aware of this feature so that they can then choose you over your competition.
So, using content marketing, you will create content that highlights this feature in various forms and then distribute it to your audience. You would not want to distribute content that is in no way linked to your special feature as it will not help you achieve your goal.
To bring this to life let’s use an illustration. Let’s suppose you run a dry cleaning service in a busy part of town. You decide to pick and drop garments for dry cleaning from your customers within a 20-kilometre radius and this is the feature that sets you apart from your competition.
You will then develop various pieces of content that clearly show how this benefits your customers. These pieces of content can include flyers you post on social media, animated explainer videos, emails and blog posts.
All these pieces of content will then be produced and distributed with the single aim of highlighting your unique selling point. You won’t have any business sharing content that will not help you achieve this goal.
2. Effective Content Marketing is Targeted
Connecting to the point above, effective content marketing must be directed towards a clearly defined audience.
Why is having a clearly defined audience important for effective content marketing?
Your audience will guide all the content creation process and ensure that your content is suited for your audience.
When you define your audience, you want to go beyond mere demographics. You want to unravel the wants, needs, interests, questions, concerns, and pain points of your prospective customers.
Using our dry cleaning example, you can identify that your prospective clients who have offices out of town may not want to get caught up in traffic as they come to drop off and pick up their garments.
You may also realise that they are busy executives who simply do not have the time to drive to and from your premises twice to get their suits cleaned.
You also want to clearly outline how your product or service (or feature) fits into their lives and is of use to them. Then you decide the kind of content that you will distribute that would inform, and engage them in a meaningful way while communicating your value proposition.
Your laundry pickup service will definitely make it easy for your prospects to have their suits cleaned without any inconvenience to them. This means that you are solving their pain points (lack of time and traffic congestion).
You will then make sure that your content clearly shows how your service solves this problem and will be very handy to your prospects. In other words, you won’t want to talk about your laundry pick up service abstractly, but you will want to tie it together with the benefit.
This again emphasizes the importance of taking time out in the planning stages to clearly identify your target audience. If you have a ‘hazy’ concept of your audience, you will not be able to produce the best results from your content marketing.
3. Your Content Must Be Valuable, Relevant, and Consistent To Your Audience.
If content marketing is to be valuable, it must resonate with your prospects. They must find it valuable and relevant to them otherwise they will quickly ignore it and focus on something else.
Remember, now there is a lot of information out there and the competition for attention is stiff, thus your prospects will easily pass over your content if they cannot connect with it.
For instance, you will need to ensure that you use headlines that will grab their attention right away so that they will be interested in reading further.
So for your dry cleaner, you may use headlines on social media posts like:
1.Got no time to visit the dry cleaner? Worry no more, the dry cleaner will visit you!
2. What if you could have dry cleaning room service at your office?
3. Two minutes is all you need to get your suits to and from the dry cleaner!
As you can see, these headlines will immediately resonate with your prospects as they immediately attack their pain points.
If your target market was, say, college students, then these headlines probably would not be so effective. Thus, identifying your audience is extremely crucial.
When it comes to consistency, you will need to be aware of the ‘rule of seven’. Now we are not talking about playing cards here or any of that sort.
The rule of seven says that a prospect needs to see or hear your marketing message at least seven times before they take action and buy from you. (You can read more about it here).
So, if you are not consistent, your message will get lost and your content marketing efforts will come to nought. You will need to be consistent and to use various channels as part of your strategic content marketing for you to attain positive results.
For the dry cleaning service, you will need to use a number of channels to get the message across. These may include posts on your social media pages, advertising campaigns on social media and on Google, YouTube video adverts etc.
Consistency in content marketing also means delivering effective content over a period of time. This makes you instantly recognizable by your prospects. When you have consistency, in your look, feel, tone, and writing style you will speak with the same voice that helps consumers get to know you and grow familiar with your organization.
Tying it all together
As you have seen, you need to put in some work to ensure that you come up with an effective content marketing campaign that can give you the results that can put a smile on your face.
Here at ContentForGrowth.com, we can help you during every step of the content marketing process. We can help you clearly identify your audience, then help you create the content for the various channels that will help you connect with your audience.
We will also give you comprehensive reports that show how your campaigns will be performing.
Get in touch for a free consultation about your content marketing needs and we will be glad to help you achieve your goals.
You can also share your questions and comments below and we will respond to them.