Content marketing – All you need to know

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It's no secret that traditional methods of marketing, are less efficient than anything they once were. Reaching prospects and subsequently converting these leads into customers had once been, much simpler than what we are seeing today. This is exactly why content marketing has quickly become a common method for businesses to reach new audiences and interact with their existing one.

By offering your audience with content which is both informational and educational (based upon your products and services), you will have the ability to show them precisely how your business will be able to efficiently solve their pain points and challenges they face. Subsequently, this approach effectively leads to the ability to increase conversions, improve brand awareness, and increase revenue.

What is Content Marketing?

Coming back to basics, content marketing is the process of creating and sharing information related to your products and services. The important thing to remember, is the fact that this content must be perceived as useful to your respective target audience. This approach will allow you to build authority in your respective filed over time.

The content that you publish can vary enormously - in fact, there are a number of content methods which can truly diversify whatever you publish. The following are just a few examples of the types of content your business can begin to integrate.

  • Infographics
  • Videos
  • Podcasts
  • Blogs
  • Whitepapers
  • Images

Why is content marketing important?

Outbound marketing strategies are not as efficient in the modern society as they once were. Content marketing on the other part, gives you the opportunity to truly drive results all through storytelling – making your marketing efforts far more personalised and engaging to your audience.

Content marketing provides not only the benefit of giving a narrative behind your business which can be easily accessed by your audience, but can also help your business:

  • Increase conversions
  • Build relationships
  • Educate your prospects about the products and services you offer
  • Connect with your target audience to demonstrate how your products and services resolve their pain points and challenges
  • Create a community

How to create an effective content marketing strategy?

It is beyond essential for any business to establish a concise content marketing plan. The aim of a content marketing strategy is to ensure that your marketing efforts are effectively channelled to relevant areas. The key components behind an successful marketing campaign on content are as follows:

  • Outline your SMART goals (specific, measurable, attainable, and timely)
  • Define your KPIs
  • Find inspiration and establish the kind of content you want to publish
  • Select the channels you are deploying content onto
  • Create a content calendar
  • Analyze and measure the performance of your content

Outline your SMART goals

The SMART framework is an effective way to precisely narrow down exactly what kind of targets you want to accomplish through your content marketing. Any SMART goals you define, must be distinctive to your company, and may find that they end up aligning with your broader company and marketing goals.

Define your KPIs

The following area to concentrate on, is your KPIs. Key to the performance indicators sit nicely inside your SMART goals, and enable you to focus on precisely what data points you will be able to use to measure the true performance of your campaign against your objectives.

For example, your initial SMART goal might be to increase your brand's awareness. KPIs that you can concentrate on to effectively measure the results of this could include your site's traffic, sign-ups, social media followers etc.

Find inspiration and establish the kind of content you want to publish

Abiding by the 80/20 rule can enable you to truly diversify the content you publish. Assigning 80% of your content to entertain, inform or educate your audience, whilst the latter 20% is to be used for promotion. By means of diversifying the content you publish, you will be able to maintain your audience's interest within your brand.

Be certain to consider what type of content YOUR audience is going to want to see. Segmenting the character of your target audience is a great way to fine tune your content marketing strategy and thereafter, your content.

For example, targeting an audience of 20-30-year-olds with content like whitepapers, might not be very effective. While you might find more visually stimulating content such as infographics or videos might perform much better.

Concentrate on asking yourself questions such as, what do your audience need from you? What challenges do your audience face? Why do they need your services?

For inspiration around content ideas, conducting research into your competitors, as well as their offerings could prove sufficient. Furthermore, by conducting this research, you will have the ability to identify areas in which they lack - that provides you with the upper hand against your competitors offerings.

Choose the channels you are deploying content onto

Recognizing that each platform is distinctively different is essential when outlining where you want to deploy what content. While you may find that the overall objective of your content marketing strategy remains the same across various platforms, they do indeed differentiate remarkably. An additional factor that must be taken into account when choosing your channels, is the place where your audience spends majority of their time online.

Create a content calendar

Content calendars are an extremely efficient way to not merely organise your content, but also guarantee your posting the relevant content, to the relevant platform, at the relevant time! Your content calendar must include structure to your content marketing mix.

Analyze and measure the performance of your content

When you have started executing your content marketing strategy, the very last (and arguably the most important) area is to track and analyse the performance of your content.

Monitoring what works effectively for your business will be the indicator that what you are doing, is working efficiently! On the other end of the spectrum, monitoring content, which is not performing very well, will suggest that you need to review this area.

Following reviewing the overall performance of your content marketing efforts, you can start to improve and adjust your content - thereby improving the overall results.

Assessing the performance of your overall campaign, remains a critical way to comprehend your audience's interactions with your business. Additionally, your efforts can present to you precisely how you are performing against your competitors in your respected field.

BIO: Polaris is an award-winning SEO agency in London, specialising in e-commerce, B2B, and the healthcare industry. Find out more about our services and how we can help you here.