Content Marketing is one of the most effective marketing methods available for businesses to get more leads.
People are constantly searching Google for information on products and services based on their specific needs. This combined with the educated decision making pattern that has got into people, makes content marketing inevitable for modern businesses.
What is Content Marketing?
In simple words, it is a type of online marketing strategy that involves developing and sharing various types of promotion materials such as blogs, infographics, posters, social media Ads, videos, etc to a target audience. Content Marketing intends to generate curiosity and interest amidst prospective customers which helps in brand promotion and lead generation.
Let us now discuss the following topics in detail:
- Why Content Marketing is Important
- Content Marketing Tips from Successful Marketers
- 5 Content Marketing Mistakes You Should Avoid
Why Content Marketing is Important?
People depend on the interactive media on a daily basis. For e.g.: Facebook has reported 2.6 billion monthly active users and Google has 2.5 billion active Android device users. So, business owners can take advantage of this opportunity to promote their products or services using different types of content. Creating and sharing clear, concise and useful information with your target audience will result in more customers engaging with your brand.
For example, a few years back, KFC India took to content marketing using pictures of crisp zinger burgers and compelling web feeds which talked about its quality measures, company values and kitchen secrets. They urged customers/readers to use #KFCTasteTheNew and the result was phenomenal. Thousands of people used the hashtag on Twitter within a week, followed by more than 15,000 social shares across different internet platforms. The content from their web feed engaged hundreds of thousand people generating love, feedback, questions and discussions on their comments page.
Brands need to put out their story on the World Wide Web to create a relationship of trust, loyalty and love with their customers. They need to be available with useful information within consumer reach; at their fingertips. Therefore content marketing is the art of storytelling that engages consumers through various forums thereby bringing in profitable relationships for the business.
Whether you are a start-up firm, virtual organization or a well-established enterprise, content marketing has a big role in the growth of your business. Now let take a look at some of the most relevant hacks that you should follow to make the most of your content marketing efforts.
Content Marketing Tips From Successful Marketers
Great writers can achieve significant business returns with just a laptop and an internet connection. Harsh Agrawal, Founder of shoutmeloud.com made thousands from his blogging skills and is now using the same to influence like-minded youngsters. Such writers know exactly what to write to pull in the crowd. Here are some useful tips on how to write great content.
It is no secret that it is the headlines that capture the attention of the audience and this happens due to two reasons; relevance and curiosity. Users will click on your Ad or blog article if the headline involves something that interests them or some information that they are looking for. Sometimes, revealing everything on headlines might result in the audience not wanting to click on it. Great writers will ensure that the headlines have the power to not only generate curiosity but also to gain readership, induce virality, and to help gain high SEO ranking. The headlines should be concise yet true to the article.
Smart marketers will think from the audience’s point of view to create searchable content. Google featured snippets give quick, brief answers to search queries. For example, if a user is searching for ‘best season to visit Kerala’, the most relevant and matching answer will be featured in a small snippet. If an article gets featured in Google snippet, the site will get a higher Click Through Rate. So optimise your blog content in such a way that the user gets the exact answer for their query to increase the chances of getting featured in snippets. While creating content for featured snippets, you can follow 3 formats – paragraph, numbered lists or bullets. To find relevant searchable content topics, keep a close watch on your competitor’s site activities. The competition on digital platforms is such that you will succeed only if you catch up.
Shorter the sweeter:
Stick to minimalism and try to avoid long paragraphs which may prompt readers to leave your site as soon as they enter. A clear and concise piece of content is better than long explanations because people don’t have much patience. The first paragraph along with the headlines will, in a way, make the first impression for the reader. Therefore, you need to have a steady introduction and a strong argument. You can use a storytelling style as people love to read them. If you have to present more data, then try to split the content into sections with subheadings to make it easy for the reader.
Making a catchy yet accurate piece of content is an art. A great writer will make sure that the content involves accurate data and this will prompt the users to revisit your site or page. Giving false information to your audience might put you in trouble. Sharing valid information will also help your site to gain more authority in Google and improve Google rankings. You should always do proper research to validate the information in your article and source it as much as you could. Read articles and content developed and written by professional marketing writers. Including quotes, links and relevant statistics can help you gain more credibility.
“If you are making an art form, be prepared to be copied” – unknown.
Making a perfect content that fulfils all the codes that are essential for marketing is a process in itself. And, one of the fundamental requirements is to make original content. This is not just for the validity of your business but also to help in SEO ranking. If there is any form of plagiarism then your site’s search rankings will be affected. That being said, there is no such thing called 100% original. Every art form is a copy. What matters is how you present it. Great writers will create impactful stories to go with it.
If you are running a blog or a vlog, make sure that you keep them active and updated. There could be users or subscribers looking forward to your content. If you share interesting content with a catchy creative, people will start following your page on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Linkedin. So it is better that you decide a time frame to share your posts, videos, Ads, posters, etc and keep your audience engaged. For example, you can share one blog article per week on your website or create a monthly calendar for sharing social media posts and videos. Most of the famous brands will have an up-to-date blog section and social media pages.
5 Content Marketing Mistakes You Should Avoid:
1. Thinking that content marketing is writing blogs
Brands being publishers is great. But that’s definitely not the end of it. Brand journalism through blogs alone is like doing news only through print.
Content marketing is often mistaken as simply writing and publishing blog articles. Creating a bunch of blogs will not help your business stand out among the audience. If you Google about a specific topic you can see millions of related articles published online. Content marketing is a very competitive and crowded market. So you cannot entirely rely on blogging to get more value for your brand. To make the most of your digital marketing efforts, don’t limit your online presence to blogging.
2. Not identifying your target audience
Writing without identifying your target audience is one of the major mistakes in content marketing. While creating articles or advertisements, you should try to address the pain points of your target audience. This will ensure more customers engaging with your brand, gradually increasing the number of leads. For example, if you are an education service provider, you must first identify the specific needs and interests of students who can be your potential customers by using analytic tools. Then you should create useful and interesting content based on these aspects.
3. Not using multiple forms of content
The digital space brings together all other forms of media giving you the opportunity to publish not just in words, but in videos, audios and graphics. To be a successful marketer, you need to leverage different kinds of content opportunities available online such as video marketing, podcasts, slides, infographics, interviews, lists, downloadable whitepapers, checklists and even cartoons (if that’s your thing). Videos are easier to understand than reading a large piece of plain text. One of our recent favorites when it comes to varied content is article lists, that serve all the benefits of a blog in a more engaging and appealing pattern. It has been observed that infographics get more customer engagement compared to other types of content.
4. Failure to create a concept around your content
Though we all understand the value of quality over quantity and relevance over size, we tend to create mediocre content every once in a while for a variety of reasons like consistency or client commitment. One of the best ways of inspiring creativity into your content is adding a unique delivery model wrapped around a concept. It could be a storytelling pattern, a simple audio option or an entirely innovative concept like the Whiteboard Friday by Moz or the GaryVee episodes by Gary Vaynerchuk. The greatest example of a brand pursuing an innovative content strategy was the 100 days of Oreo campaign which not only went viral among its audience but created a ripple effect in all of digital advertising ever since.
5. Not focusing on different social platforms
The chances of people finding you without any social promotion are almost nil unless you are Forbes or the Huffington Post. So while pursuing your regular social media marketing, it becomes crucial for brands to synchronize their promotional messages in tune with their content goals. Also, craft social specific content that caters to the wider audience on social media – be it publishing on LinkedIn Pulse, creating infographics from Pinterest content or making the most of Dubsmash like Kingfisher did.
Content marketing needs to include promotion of the brand explicitly as well as a smart strategy that brings people to our website. As content writers working in a competitive market, we should always aim to fulfill our clients’ interests.
We hope this article was informative and useful for you. If you have innovative and smart ideas of how brands can pursue content marketing more effectively do share them with us at the comments section.