Problem : How to use content marketing to appeal to your customer?
LO1: What is content marketing?
- Types of contents
- Advantages vs disadvantages
LO2: Content marketing strategy
LO3: How to create effective content for your audience?
- Customers relation
- Customer engagement
- Customer loyalty
- Brand awareness
WHAT IS CONTENT MARKETING?
‘Content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and acquire a clearly defined audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.’ (The Content Marketing Institute, an online resource for information on all things content marketing related)
-> You can tell if a piece of content is the sort that could be part of a content marketing campaign if people seek it out, if people want to consume it, rather than avoiding it. When considering if it’s an ad or content marketing, it al depends on how it’s received by each individual who is exposed to it.
Types of ‘contents’ :
- Infographics. These are generally long, vertical graphics that include statistics, charts, graphs, and other information.
- Webpages. What’s the difference between a normal webpage and a webpage that is content marketing? Consider The Beginner’s Guide to SEO from Moz, a provider of SEO related tools and resources. This resource, offered for free, has been viewed millions of times, bringing in countless customers who otherwise might never have stumbled across Moz and the services they offer. Or take a look at a case study from the design firm Teehan+Lax. Most case studies are boring. Their case studies are fascinating. That’s the difference between simply putting content on your website, and content marketing.
- Podcasts. Michael Hyatt, author of the best-selling book Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World, practices what he preaches. His “This is Your Life” podcast is downloaded 250,000 times each month. As Hyatt elaborates on his blog post 4 Reasons You Should Consider Launching Your Own Podcast, “A podcast gives you visibility in a completely different world—primarily iTunes. I have had scores of new people say they had never heard of me until they stumbled onto me in iTunes.” Hyatt gives valuable information and advice in his podcast–all for free. But that podcast leads to more sales of his books, signups for his courses, and requests for him as a speaker.
- Videos. Gary Vaynerchuk is a master of content marketing using online video, just take a look at his YouTube channel. He got his start creating videos to promote his family’s wine store and through those videos and other online marketing he eventually grew it to a $45M empire. Videos and podcasts are a largely untapped form of content marketing because people think it’s expensive and hard. But with the falling cost of professional grade equipment creating high quality video and audio content is easier than ever. Amateur video content marketing has been used to sell blenders, launch new dental products, and market Hong Kong visa consulting services. What video could you throw together for your company that might change your fortunes overnight? It might be easier than you think.
- Books. Like movies, people often think of books as selling themselves, but savvy marketers don’t sell books just to sell books, they sell books as marketing tools. Michael Port’s sales manual Book Yourself Solid is a great read for entrepreneurs, salespeople, and marketers, and while I’m sure Port enjoys selling his book, the book is a tool for driving customers to his coaching and speaking services. Although with self-publishing it’s easier than ever to publish a book, there is still the perception that it’s difficult and that only reputable professionals can publish a business book. Publish your own, and even if people don’t read it you can still use it as a form of content marketing every time you’re introduced as “Author of…”
+ white papers, ebooks, apps, public speaking, presentations, and blogs
(Business to community)
Content marketing strategy
1) Set content marketing goals, align them to business goals (SMART)
Content Marketing Strategy Tip: Don’t approach your content thinking “how will this help me achieve X goal.” You don’t want to stifle creativity. Instead, come up with great ideas for content, then see how you can tie them back to your content marketing goals. It may just be a matter of adding a relevant CTA or choosing specific channels to publish on.
2) Establish the target audience of your content
3)Determine content types best suited to your business
4) Create a content execution plan (step-by-step man on how an idea turns into a finished product)
5) Create a content promotion process (owned, earned, paid media)
6) Know how to measure & refine your content marketing (Hootsuite, Google Analytics, ..)
How to create effective content for your audience?
Many marketers look at engagement as getting others to act. In the end it is. But to me, that action isn’t clicking or buying etc. alone. That’s the measurable stuff. Engagement is also about providing experiences and answers to questions and needs, still the primary task of content. When you solve someone’s questions or simply deliver what they expect and need across their journey or on your website, you also engage them as they get what they want. Also measurable but not directly.
A content strategy, as a consistent plan to offer great customer experiences using content, obviously starts with understanding the essential informational needs of so-called target audiences. Think about the core content people need to find on your website, for instance. However, it goes further than that. Content plays a role in all stages of the proverbial funnel and as we’ll keep repeating can fulfil a huge number of business and marketing goals or better: help fulfil them in an integrated and customer-centric way, before, during and after the buy. The need to engage through relevance goes for virtually all potential content marketing goals. Think about branding, for instance. You build emotional connections, you appeal or in other words: you engage here as well. The list goes on. (iScoop)
People will start to recognize your company when they come across resources online that clearly “feel like” your brand, such as:
- Written blog posts that sound like your brand
- Graphics that look like your company
- Videos that show the people behind your company
2) actively listen to your audience
3) constantly research
4) extract knowledge from others
5) watch how other content performs
6) obsess over quality
7) constantly ask ‘does this provide value?’
8) monitor conservations with your customers (blog comments, social media mentions,..)
9) constantly ask questions
10) avoid blindly following the latest trends : if you want to try a new content format, see how your audience reacts with a minimal viable test
‘Just as we don’t build the same product & market it to vastly different customers, we shouldn’t produce the same content and distribute it to vastly different readers’
(Hubspot blogs – David Ly Khim (marketeer)