The World of Content Marketing
Marketing has changed. Gone are the days of traditional marketing methods, where a company would find the nearest soapbox and pitch their products or services to potential customers. So, now the strategy that every company is chasing after is content marketing. Now you may be wondering – what is content marketing? Why are so many companies switching over to a content marketing strategy? What are the benefits of content marketing? We’ll answer all of those questions and more here in this blog item.
What Is Content Marketing?
In fact, this blog that you’re reading right now could be considered a piece of content marketing. It’s a piece of content that’s designed to be relevant to potential customers, hit on SEO keywords, and fit into a larger marketing strategy. And that’s what content marketing is – creating interesting, relevant content that’ll bring customers in, inform and even entertain them, and, hopefully, keep them around. Content is king, and that carries over to the world of marketing. It’s not enough anymore to sell your products or services by running a few well-placed ads. Now, you need a whole world of content.
There are many different types of content marketing: blogs, like this one, video content, infographics, e-books, podcasts, and more. The one aspect that any of the different types of content marketing must have in common is relevance to the customer base. It’s not enough to simply slap your logo on any piece of content and call it a day. In fact, in many ways, that can backfire – if you’ve ever signed up for a poorly-designed email marketing campaign, for example, you may have experienced this yourself.
People don’t want spam. They want relevant, entertaining, informative content, and that’s why it’s so important to know who your customer base is and what they want to see. But, how do you make sure that content is relevant? You have to know what story you want to tell about your company through your content. That’s what makes content marketing so powerful – the ability to tell the story you want about your products or services.
One of the examples that content marketing guru Neil Patel likes to use is that of GI Joe. Hasbro didn’t just create a few ads telling kids to go out and buy their toys. No, they created an entire world around them, with comics and cartoons and more, meaning that the toys became a way for GI Joe obsessed kids to become a part of their new favorite world. Now, you’re probably not going to go out there and create an entire animated cartoon to sell your products, but you can apply that lesson to anything you want to market. A successful content marketing strategy will tell a story about your company, a story that’s relevant to your ideal customer base and a story that will make them want to continue being your customer.
Why Do Companies Love Content Marketing?
Now that we know what content marketing is, we must ask the question – why are companies switching over to a content marketing strategy? Well, there are plenty of reasons, but perhaps the most enticing one comes from looking at the numbers. The ROI on content marketing is impressive. According to a study done by DemandMetric, content marketing costs 62% less than traditional strategies and creates three times as many leads. That’s some real bang for your buck.
One of the most notable examples of bang-for-your-buck content marketing comes from Dollar Shave Club. Back in 2012, they posted their first piece of content marketing on YouTube – a single video that only cost $4500 to make. In the first 48 hours following the posting of that video, they saw 12,000 signups to their service, and the video itself now has tens of millions of views. If that isn’t a good return on investment, I don’t know what is.
What Are the Benefits of Content Marketing?
Besides the obvious cost benefits, what else is there to like about the content marketing strategy? For one, you’re meeting people where they are. Traditional marketing simply doesn’t reach people in the same way in an increasingly connected and online world. People aren’t waiting for ads or pitches to show up, they’re out there reading articles and blogs or watching online videos. Having a good content marketing strategy means that your company will have the chance to create regular content that people consume.
Content marketing is also effective at retaining customers. When you’re able to create high quality, relevant content, you build trust in your intended audience. They’ll see you not just as a company that sells a product they want, but a trusted, personable brand. After all, it’s not enough to simply attract customers – you have to keep them, too.
Content marketing is the practice of creating relevant, useful, and entertaining content that appeals to your customer base and tells a story about your company and the products or services you provide. This is a distinct change from traditional marketing strategies, and the benefits can be immense. Content marketing is cheaper and has a significant ROI, meets customers where they are, and can help retain customers for the long haul. Marketing has changed, and it’s hard not to be excited for its future.