What Is Content Marketing?
Content marketing is a more recent type of marketing. It focuses on mainly on planning, creating, publishing and sharing digital content with a targeted audience.
Today, businesses use content marketing to help them attract new customers and generate leads. It can also be used to help them:
- Grow their client base
- Generate or increase sales online
- Engaging their online community
- Increase awareness surrounding their brand.
In other words, content marketing helps businesses attract new prospects and convert them into customers by sharing informative, engaging, and valuable content.
This helps to build trust between a brand and its audience, creating customer loyalty and increasing the likelihood that a lead will make a purchase.
It’s also important to point out that content marketing isn’t meant to involve sales in any way. Instead, it’s designed to create a rapport with the audience, establishing the brand as a trusted thought-leader in their industry.
What is Content Marketing Strategy?
To put it simply, a content marketing strategy helps you identify the “why” behind your content.
For a content marketing strategy to be effective, you need to know who you plan on helping and how you will help them with the content you’ll create in the future.
In other words, the beginning of any good strategy involves identifying your target audience, identifying problems and issues they face, and then, identifying what types of content you should create to provide your audience with valuable solutions to their problems.
For example, if you owned a business that sold natural skincare products, your target audience might be women between the age of 25 and 35.
One problem or pain point this audience might have is that they are trying to avoid man-made chemicals in their skincare products.
Therefore, you might create content that explains the types of chemicals found in skincare products. This would help establish your brand as a trusted expert on the topic. And allow your audience to view your natural products as a solution to their problem.
Essentially, the main idea behind a content plan or strategy is to identify problems and create content that solves them.
Learn more here: https://contentmarketinginstitute.com/developing-a-strategy/
Although similar to a content marketing strategy, content planning is a little bit different.
Typically, a content plan is more tactical than a content marketing strategy and documents the exact methods that you will use to execute it.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that your brand needs a content marketing strategy before you create your content plan.
While your strategy should document buyer personas and their journey, your content plan should include more specific details such as your content cluster topics, the types of content you plan on creating, how and where you’ll share your content, and any specific calls-to-action you want your content to include.
Buyer Personas in Content Marketing
Buyer personas are an age-old marketing technique where a fictional character is created to represent a member of a brand’s potential audience.
Digital marketers use these fictional personas, as well as market segmentation, to identify potential customers, their issues, and their purchasing habits to create content specific to them.
As a business, you need to personalize your sales process according to your buyer’s personas, as well as their journey.
A buyer’s journey consists of three steps:
- The awareness stage, which is when the buyer realizes they have an issue.
- The consideration stage, when the buyer knows they have a problem and are searching for a solution.
- The decision stage, which is when the buyer chooses a solution by making a purchase or engaging with a business in some way.
Without an intimate understanding of your potential buyers, it’s impossible to create content that addresses their issues. Consider asking the following questions to help you discover your buyer’s journey:
- How would a buyer describe their challenges?
- How do your buyers learn about their problems and challenges?
- What happens if your buyers do not take any action?
- What are some common misconceptions your buyers have about their challenges?
- How do your buyers address their problems?
- What categories of issues/problems do your buyers investigate?
- How do they decide which categories are right for them?
Answering these questions will provide you with the robust foundation of your buyer’s journey.
There are many different ways that brands can use content to interact with their audience. However, blogging has become one of the most effective types of content because businesses can use blog posts to directly address their audience’s problems.
And of course, the most important way to promote your blog posts and website content is by using social media.
Learn more about using social media and ads to promote content and grow your business.
According to pretty much every marketing expert out there, blogging is the best way to drive inbound traffic to your website and convert your visitors into leads.
With that said, blogging should be your top priority when creating a content marketing strategy. Just avoid making these common blogging mistakes:
- Not using your blog to capture leads.
- Not consistently publishing valuable blog content.
- Thinking that every one of your blog posts will go viral.
- Not writing clearly or publishing content full of grammatical errors.
- Not creating long-form content.
Content Creation Tools
Scaling Content Output
As we’ve already mentioned, one of the biggest mistakes a brand can make is not publishing enough content or not creating valuable content that keeps their readers interested and engaged with the brand.
That’s why it’s important to consistently publish awesome content that addresses your potential buyers’ problems with valuable solutions.
For help scaling your brand’s content output or simply learning more about how content marketing can help you grow your business, it’s often helpful to hire a content marketing expert.
The Hobo Marketing Company can help you identify your target audience and create content that connects with them in a meaningful way.