Content marketing is a branch of inbound marketing, which is focused on creating and sharing content to attract a brand’s target audience. This content has to be of value to the buyer persona of the firm and distributed in those channels where it is present.
After all, nowadays, online presence is essential to get new customers. This is something that all companies know, so it is no longer enough to be on the Internet, but to follow a series of strategies that make you stand out from the competition. Nowadays, the public has the ability to choose the type of content they want to consume and the use they want to give it. Therefore, the main objective of content marketing is to give your target audience the content they want. To do this, it has to have some utility for the Internet user and not just focus on selling the company’s products. In this way, your audience will have a positive image of the company, since it has been helpful to them at some point.
What is inbound marketing?
Inbound marketing is a digital marketing strategy that focuses on attracting the public in a natural, silent and non-aggressive way. It achieves this through four fundamental points:
In summary, as you may have seen, content marketing is present from the first phase of inbound marketing, being responsible for attracting visitors.
What are the benefits of content marketing?
Content marketing has multiple benefits for all those brands that carry it out. The first of these is the increase in traffic to your website. This is because, by creating relevant content for your audience, you will improve your positioning in search engines. In this way, you will attract new visitors, since they will find you more easily, being among the first search results.
The second great benefit of content marketing is the generation of brand awareness. Brand awareness is a metric that calculates the recognition of a brand by consumers. By producing and sharing valuable content for your target audience, you will create a positive view of your brand. Of all the competition, a follower of your social networks or a reader of your blog will prefer to buy a product from your company. Therefore, your notoriety will increase.
Thirdly, content marketing achieves engagement. This term refers to the level of commitment that users have with your brand, being within the concept of the interaction, perception, and trust of users with the firm. At the same time, these users, who interact with your company on a constant basis, will be in charge of attracting new visitors, playing the role of evangelists.
Content marketing aims to prepare users in the sales cycle so that they are able to make the purchase decision at the end of it. Therefore, this technique also has the benefit of educating the market, making them understand what the products you offer are for and how they should be used. Being this, another type of relevant content that will improve the brand awareness of the firm.
Increasing sales with content marketing
As is to be expected, one of the great advantages of this type of marketing is the increase in sales. However, the vision of content marketing is to achieve this in a natural and unobtrusive way, in which users are transformed into customers at the moment they need them. Since you increase your number of users by improving your page rank by creating relevant content, you will also increase the number of leads. If the whole chain is followed with discipline, these leads will become customers in the vast majority of cases, as they will see your brand as the best option.
As we mentioned before, the relationship between the brand and the customer does not end with the purchase. What is really beneficial for any company is to increase the lifetime-value, which is the total cost that a customer invests in your brand. By continuing to take care of this customer after the purchase, with good customer service and certain buyer benefits, the customer will want to repeat the experience.
Types of content marketing
There are different types of content marketing, depending on the platform on which the message is disseminated and its format.
- Social media: Social media is a fundamental part of any content marketing strategy. The real benefit of social networks is that there are millions of active users on them. Through them, you can interact in a much closer and direct way with your audience.
- Blogs: Blogs are the main platforms of any content marketing strategy. They offer many advantages, since they play an informative role and support different formats. This increases the audience and the probability of conversion.
- Videos: Videos can be viewed on different devices, for example a computer, tablet, or cell phone. In addition, they can be published on different platforms. They add credibility to the firm and connect very well with the audience, educating them through this content format.
- Email: Email is another platform with many advantages. Most people use email, so you can reach countless people through it. On the other hand, it does not involve much budget investment, and you can know how many people have reached your content, how many have opened it and how many have clicked on it.
How to create a content marketing strategy?
The first thing to be clear about is the objectives of the marketing strategy. Defining objectives makes it clear to the team what data they need to measure and what they need to do to achieve that objective. Without objectives, you have no place to go and no map to follow. Set a destination point and plot everything else from there.
To create a content marketing strategy, there are several steps to follow. All of them must be planned in advance.
Once you have defined the objective of the strategy, you must define the key performance indicators. These are metrics used to measure the brand’s performance in terms of the objectives set. At this point, it is important to clarify an issue. Metrics are necessary to avoid taking blind steps and to know when you should deviate from the marked path and when you should move forward in a straight line. However, it is not good to abuse them.
Some brands make the mistake of using countless metrics. This only makes them dizzying and overwhelming. Therefore, choose a KPI that fits your strategy and is not complicated to understand and focus on it. For example, if your goal is to generate more engagement, you can check the number of posts shared on social networks or comments.
Once you have defined both your objectives and the tools to guide you, you will have to define your buyer persona. Based on your buyer persona, their tastes, concerns and beliefs, you will have to elaborate the rest of the elements of the content marketing strategy. At the end of the day, everything you do should be oriented to your buyer persona, to please them and to make them advance through the sales funnel.
You already have the goal you want to reach, the right people to accompany you and the tools to guarantee your arrival. Now comes the most important part: organizing the content according to the sales funnel. This way, depending on the part of the funnel you are in, you will have to generate a certain type of content.
Core of content marketing
Content creation is the main element, the core of the strategy. To produce content, it is not only necessary to write. There are many issues that must be taken into account for this content to have the desired effect on users.
The first thing you should do when creating content is to decide what the keywords will be. You should find out which are the most demanded keywords in your sector and focus on them. However, it is important to make a clarification at this point. There are many brands that focus on keywords and search engine approval and, unfortunately, forget the most important part of the chain: the user. Keywords should never hinder the reading and comprehension of the text. They should go unnoticed and should be introduced in a natural way, without forcing anything.
Beyond the keywords, you will also have to decide on the length of your texts. Depending on the format and platform, they will have to be longer or shorter. In addition, you will also have to accompany them with other types of content, such as videos, images, or infographics. This helps scalability and makes the text more attractive to consume. For this, it is important that you use bullet points, bold words and paragraphs.
Once you have created the content, you will have to share it on other platforms. You can do this mainly through social networks, one of the most important channels in today’s age. However, it is not necessary to have a presence on all of them. Focus only on those where your target audience is active. In addition, you should adapt your message to each of them. The tone used on LinkedIn is not the same as on Instagram.
Beyond social networks, it is also convenient to promote your content through email. The difference between this and social networks is that the content reaches the user directly. Another advantage is that you can help the user to continue through the funnel with different types of specific content for each phase.
In short, the first thing you must do to achieve a successful content marketing strategy is to know your target audience, your objectives, and your company. You must know what your current possibilities are, in order to set realistic goals. Otherwise, the only thing you will get is frustration. If, once you have analyzed your objectives, you have verified that they are achievable for the company, start to study your audience in depth. The most important thing of all is to plan each step from the beginning, to know every step of the way, and to have the necessary tools for the journey.