In today’s fast-paced and competitive online world, it’s paramount for online businesses to come up with better and newer ways to attract more visitors to their websites, retain & convert those visitors and to improve their website’s page rankings.
Content marketing is one tool which can help you achieve these objectives. It is not only cost-effective marketing strategy but also a very important arm of digital marketing. If you observe, you absorb it everywhere – social media, advertisements, announcements, emails, blogs, search engines and so on. It is an art of storytelling.
Why is it Important?
The points mentioned below are just the tip of the iceberg. Anyone can use content marketing to their advantage to:
- Give relevant information that your customers are seeking.
- Build a community of loyal leads.
- Improve SEO and hence Google ranking.
- Increase brand visibility and popularity.
- Position your business as an industry expert and leader.
And hence add brand value to your product or service
Write like a human being. Unfortunately, the writing style you learned in grade school is not how we actually communicate as human beings. Fragments are good. They drive home points. People like to speak with people. Be a human being.
Be helpful. It’s amazing how much useless sh*t is out here on the internet. Think about how frustrating it probably was to Google this same question and read through the countless. generic. robotic. listicles. Generate content about something you really know and can teach people. Like Brian mentioned, make it something you would want to read.
Be persistent. I haven’t hit the big time yet, but the people I know who have all share the same story. When you find your voice, whether that be through writing, performing, illustrating, designing, etc, you have to keep putting out quality content, even if you’re not seeing immediate results. The good news is that once you start to see traction (maybe after your 50th post), some of your older content may start to become more relevant and can be reused.
There are no silver bullets. With almost no exceptions. There are, however, lead bullets. Picture this: you’re just starting out, you know that your Facebook posts get 100 views and generate about 10 visits to your page. If your goal is to get 100 new visitors to your site, write 10 posts. If they are good (human, helpful), the readership will grow. Think incrementally, be persistent, and you will see success.
Be systematic. This is one of our core values at Malartu. Use the scientific method when generating, publishing, and distributing content and you will begin to build a strong playbook for each content type. By this I mean: set an objective, create an experiment, write down a hypothesis, run your test, record the result, and repeat. Eventually, you will have a system that you know to a fairly certain degree will return X result from X new channel or content.
Think about how a person finds value in your product/service. It’s not always about the acquisition. Content marketing is also about activation, retention, revenue, referral (Aarrr to you Pirate Metrics fans). Think about the journey a customer takes to get to that ‘aha’ moment and what it takes to repeat that moment over and over. Surround that journey with helpful content and you can do a lot with a little. We call that “turning chicken shit into chicken salad” where I’m from.
Build a stack of tools to automate your playbook. So you’re being systematic and you’re pumping your value chain with great content – that’s a lot of work. Build a marketing stack of tools to help automate the distribution of this content and put it in the lead/customer’s hands right when it mattered most. Check out this post for ideas: 9 Must-Have Tools for Growth Hackers and Marketing Managers
Invite guests to create content with you. I love doing this for two reasons: 1) I can’t put out a high volume of expert content because I can’t possibly know everything about everything (despite what I tell my girlfriend) and 2) My smart friends will write this content for free because it helps their SEO and positions them as a thought-leader. It’s truly a win-win and helpful to take a little weight off your shoulders.
Listen to your customers. Much of your inspiration should come from questions you hear from customers. If you’re in a larger company, make it an initiative of your marketing team to open dialogue with sales, customer success, and product to really understand what people are asking with regards to your product or service. Once you have a library of topics, then you can do some research to optimize topics, headlines, and content-type for distribution.
Try to make it evergreen. It’s not always possible, but it is an incredible asset to publish content that can be used again at a later date and stay relevant. Product listicles or current events can get a ton of hits but they can flame out. Posts about strategy thought leadership, infographics, or case studies can stand the test of time. In fact, much of this post could be reused at a later date.