We all have heard terms like content marketing, content strategy, and content planning. But what do they stand for? Can these terms be used interchangeably? If not, then what is the definition of content marketing? How is it any different from the marketing practices that marketers used to follow? In this article, we will answer all these queries and tell you everything you need to understand the term.
What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing basically is a strategic marketing approach that involves creating valuable, relevant, insightful, and action-driven content. Content can be of various types and can serve various purposes. For instance, a content marketer may create audio content to be aired on the radio or can come up with a visual masterpiece that serves the objectives. Different types of content can be used to serve various purposes like educating the audience, creating awareness about the brand/product, or informing the target group about something. Content strategy on the other hand refers to the plan of how a brand is planning to share content and what impact it will generate.
Content Marketing Strategy
Content marketing strategy basically answers why a particular type of content is needed? You need content that’s for sure, which is why you are reading this article, but content marketing strategy basically tells you why you need to produce content in a certain manner. What is its importance and how it is going to help you achieve your objective?
Usually, content marketing is used to enhance customer experience and build the audience to achieve profitable results like increasing revenues, or generating leads.
To make your business successful, you need a robust content marketing strategy. According to a study, in 2019, content marketers with a documented content marketing strategies were 40% more successful than the ones who did not follow any content marketing strategy at all.
Content Marketing Strategies- Step by Step
To take your brand to new heights, here are some steps that will help you to create a robust content marketing strategies.
Define your goals
We often find ourselves in a dilemma about what type of content should be created and how it will be created. While doing that we tend to overlook why we have to create content. What purpose is it going to serve? Do you need content to generate leads? Do you want to provide better customer experience? Or do you need sales?
First of all, define the goals you wish to achieve with your content and then move on to deciding what type of content can serve this purpose and how you should create it.
Determine your audience
Every day, we get to see new content being posted by the brands we follow. So, it is an essential duty of a marketer to determine the audience and create a strategy that makes your company stand apart from others in the market. In short, you have to give your audience a solution to their problem by understanding their needs.
Determining your audience’s needs should be the central approach of your content marketing strategy.
You have to see if your content is:
- Educating them?
- Motivating them?
- Is unusually useful?
- Or an information provider?
You must know your audience along with your trail to move smoothly towards your goal.
Track your Content Marketing
Do you want to know how your content is working? Of course, you do. Track your content or do something that can prove the performance of your content before and after applying the strategy, so that you can make changes accordingly.
There are 4 metrics of content marketing strategy that can help you monitor the progress of your content.
- Consumption metrics – The easiest place to start with that tells you how the audience is engaging with your content.
- Sharing metrics – As the name reflects it tells you how often your content is shared.
- Lead generation metrics – Generating leads is the ultimate goal for many organizations, how many leads your content is generating?
- Sales metrics – What is the difference you have felt in your sales figure after implementing your content marketing strategy?
Identify your top Audience and Research their needs
Not only it is important to attract and engage the audience with your content, but you must also understand that you have to attract the relevant audience according to your content. How can you identify your audience’s needs? For this, you can conduct a survey to identify what else or what next your audience is expecting to hear from you.
Look carefully at the feedback and examine every aspect of it. Once you know what your audience wants only then you can plan and create content that appeals to them and can help you achieve your objectives.
Create a Content Calendar
Do not lose your audience by not connecting with your audience even for a day. Try to stay visible to them on every platform they use – be it print media, TV channels, or digital media.
Create powerful Inbound Marketing Strategies
Mass marketing strategies worked effectively when marketers had a limited number of mediums to use. However, the time has changed and so are the preferences of customers. People now believe more in the reviews of a product or service than the product itself. Especially when they have multiple options, they tend to look for reviews through search engines & social media platforms. This is the reason why inbound marketing is one step ahead of outbound marketing. So if you are a business or a solution provider, you have to understand the needs of the customers on your radar and fulfill those needs with a powerful inbound marketing strategy.
Creating Inbound Marketing Content Strategies
Invest in SEO
Search engine optimization is the technique to increase the visibility of your content/website on search engines. SEO helps a content or website get more organic (unpaid) traffic. Several factors combine together to get the SEO function to work properly such as backlinks, keywords, images used on the webpage, and the content quality.
Tailored Content Generate leads
When you write articles, blogs, or content for any inbound marketing strategy, be sure that you have optimized it for generating leads. The main idea here is to provide a sense of security to your customers from which they feel safe while leaving their details with you.
There are 2 steps that work to determine the lead generation process:
- Recognize which stage in the pirate funnel your visitors belong to.
- Engage them with personalized content.
- If needed give a call to action button.
Analyze which strategy your competitor is applying that probably is providing it an edge in generating leads and in maximizing profit. You can look closely at the statistics that your competitor is displaying about its product. You don’t have to copy them, but just to understand what you need to improve and what might work for you as well.
Distribute your Content to all the relevant Platforms
To get more traffic on your content, you must include researched keywords in your articles. If you gain traffic after publishing your articles within 24 hours, it’s a good sign for SEO. More traffic means more engagement and more leads.
When a blog/article is popular on the internet and social media platforms, then search engines rank them higher. For this, it is also important to keep sharing your content on all the relevant channels.
Here are some steps you can take for inbound marketing:
- Identify the right and relevant channels for inbound marketing strategy.
- Do not get hesitated to join multiple channels.
- Adapt or adjust your content to match the style of the channels.
- Keep monitoring the channels i.e. which channel is working best for content.