Content marketing is articles, videos, guides, newsletters, news, case studies, and valuable content that a company releases. Content marketing attracts new users and turns the audience into buyers and loyal customers.
I’ll tell you how content marketing helps companies, what content formats are available, and who is suitable for this method of promotion. You can use our content marketing services for your websites.
What tasks does content marketing solve?
Helps increase sales. A positive brand image, openness in communication with customers, and expertise work to increase sales.
According to statistics, 47% of people read about 3-5 blog posts before making a purchase decision. And data from a study by Sprout Social, Inc. say that 9 out of 10 people prefer to buy from brands familiar to them on social networks.
Helps increase organic traffic to the site. Regular content increases the SEO position of the site. It brings people to it from search engines and other sites – social networks or friendly blogs.
Introduces the audience to a brand, product, or service. Content marketing is the creation and distribution of digital marketing collateral with the goal of increasing brand awareness and helps to tell what benefits the client will receive, immerses in the specifics of the field of activity, and allows sharing of interesting facts and news.
Shows the expertise of the company. It introduces industry experts and increases trust in the brand, its products, and its services.
Forms a positive image of the company, increases loyalty, and enhances feedback. The client has a place to speak, and the seller can track the audience’s mood, see what problems concern buyers, work out the negative and keep the client.
Helps to expand the audience and increase the subscriber base. With the help of a blog, you can grow your audience on social networks and collect leads.
When is content marketing needed?
New project. Talking about a new product or service is logical and necessary. This will explain to the audience what’s what and increase confidence in an unfamiliar product.
Another plus: high-quality regular content increases the site’s search engine results and helps increase traffic.
Complex product or service. There are products that it is difficult for the average person to understand without expert help. For example, technically complex goods or services that require immersion in specific areas (medicine, finance, legal services). With content marketing, you can close the audience’s questions and help customers make a choice.
Expensive product. A high cost usually increases the duration of the purchase cycle: the user studies the features of a product or service for a long time and weighs all the pros and cons before parting with a large amount. In such cases, the content helps unobtrusively present the product, builds trust, and leads the “warm” client to purchase.
Marketing scaling. Everything is in order with the site and advertising, but you want to increase the audience and reduce the cost of a lead. Content marketing will help attract new customers, warm up the audience, and increase brand confidence.
What should be the content
Content for the sake of content and low-quality content will alienate rather than bring in new customers. To create materials that the user will not pass by, you need to study your audience.
Benefit for the reader. Be sure to consider the interests and needs of the audience and be informative. Content is helpful if it answers user questions and explains even the most complex things in simple terms. Help to increase the value of content:
- examples and comparisons – users perceive information nicely when there is a reference to familiar situations that they regularly encounter;
- Different types of materials. It is not always necessary to suffer and explain something in the text if it is easier to give a picture with a caption, a comparative table, or a short video;
- personal experience – it is helpful to share what you have experienced, describe successful cases and practices;
- Expert assessments – sometimes the product is complex, and the service is incomprehensible. You can contact an expert who will put the information on the shelves and help you figure out what’s what.
Attractiveness. Content should capture attention and evoke an emotional response from the reader. It is good if a designer is involved in content marketing, which helps create high-quality visual accompaniment for texts.
Recognizable style. Your own tone of voice – the kind of communicating with the audience and presenting information – will help you stand out from your competitors and be remembered. Over time, users will begin to recognize the brand at a glance.
Efficiency. The content should gently warm up the audience and, where appropriate, contain the call to action that you expect from the user. For example, read another article, watch a video or webinar, subscribe to social networks, visit a website, or buy a product or service.
How to attract readers
It is not enough to create good content. It is important to convey it to the user. Even the best article will be useless if no one reads it. Bottom line: time and money are spent on creating content, but the goal is not achieved – users do not see the article and do not visit the site.
To avoid this, even before starting work, you need to understand where to place content and how to bring it to the audience.
There are several channels through which content is distributed.
Natural issuance in search engines. When preparing texts, it is important to take into account the principles of SEO: select and use keywords in the text, put meta tags on pages, create logical and structured texts, use H2 and H3 headings, and numbered and bulleted lists. We talk in detail about how to optimize a site in our fantastic guide to SEO.
Paid advertising :
- Contextual advertising – shown to users based on their search queries, interests, and Internet behavior. Advertising can be designed as a text ad, graphics, or video and promote a variety of content products – a blog posts, videos, training courses and webinars, service tools;
- Targeted ads are ads that users of social networks see. At the same time, ads are shown to those who fit the given characteristics: gender, age, geolocation, and behavior on the social network. For targeted advertising to be effective, you need to study your audience well and understand what and to whom to advertise;
- Advertising in specialized communities. Paid posts can be placed in groups and publics in which the audience may be interested in your products or services.
Email newsletters. You can send readers a text inviting them to go to the site and read the article in whole or compile collections of the most exciting materials at the end of the month. At the same time, the content gets to warm customers – those who have already agreed to receive the newsletter.
Social media platforms. are not only a platform for posting content but also a channel for its distribution. Here you can post links to new articles and bring subscribers from social networks to the blog on the site.
How to start a content marketing strategy?
Launching content marketing can be divided into several stages.
Goal definition – what you want to achieve with the new line of work. For example, increase brand or product awareness, improve and maintain the company’s reputation, and increase sales.
Analysis of the market, your own business, and competitors – how popular your topic is on the Internet, what content your competitors publish, and what you have already written. How to conduct competitor analysis.
Target audience analysis. You need to study the people for whom you will create content: who they are, what they care about, and how they behave on the Internet. It depends on the segments of the target audience, what the content will be like and how best to distribute it. How to determine the target audience of a business.
Development of a content strategy, which includes:
- determining the budget – how much money you are willing to spend on creating and promoting content;
- target audience – for whom you will create content;
- headings and content formats – how and what you will write about, how often, how text, photo, and video materials will be distributed;
- venues – where you will be located;
- Distribution – how you will bring the content to users, what promotion channels to use.
Formation of a team of specialists who will develop and control the content plan, create, post, and promote content. First, you need an author, an SEO specialist, and an editor who will steer the process. If the direction begins to develop, the editorial office will also grow.
You will need new authors and editors and other specialists – designers, proofreaders, typesetters, SMM(social media marketing)-and analysts.
The development of a content plan is a document in which the topics and dates of publications are fixed.
Implementation of the content plan – creation, placement, and promotion of the planned content.
How to evaluate the effectiveness of content marketing
To understand how effective the content is, they use standard Internet marketing metrics — they can be tracked in Google Analytics. Evaluation of content marketing results includes:
- traffic analysis – traffic statistics, audience coverage, inputs and traffic sources, traffic growth, most visited pages;
- engagement analysis — session duration and readability of materials, number of bounces, percentage of returning users, growth in the number of subscribers to email newsletters and in social networks, response publications from customers and partners, the number of external links to content;
- information perception analysis — likes and comments in social networks or blogs, feedback forms, monitoring of reactions on forums and in thematic groups and publics, clicking on links within site, open rate mailing;
- Conversion analysis – how much selling content was published, how many transitions were made from them, and how many purchases were made through these transitions.
Regular monitoring of the results and analysis of user behavior is necessary to evaluate the content strategy’s success and correct it in time: scale up successful tactics and abandon formats that have not aroused interest among your audience.