If It Isn't Valuable, It Isn't Content Marketing
Today, everyone goes to great lengths to avoid ads. It’s becoming easier and simpler to avoid them with DVR’ed programs and ad blockers. That’s why content marketing is so effective right now. It’s not an advertisement. It puts consumers first. It addresses their needs and wants. It brings value to the conversation, rather than a sales pitch.
Consumers actively seek out content they want: solutions, entertainment and tools that help them save time. They filter out the rest. If your advertising is boring, wastes consumers’ time and doesn’t provide a meaningful solution to anything more than a trivial problem, content marketing might be a better option for you.
Effective content marketing resonates, entertains, informs and delights your potential customers. It’s not a thinly veiled marketing pitch, like an advertorial that tricks people into clicking something. It delivers value outside of your core products and services. In exchange, consumers give you the attention they don’t give to traditional advertising. Ideally, it leads to more time with your target audience and deeper engagement.
"It’s effective at every point in the marketing funnel."
It delivers leads directly to landing pages and websites. It influences potential consumers who are considering your brand, and it also generates broad awareness. It’s effective at every point in the marketing funnel. Ultimately, if you can convert your leads into a subscription list, you can continue to market to that audience for years, all because you won them over with timely, relevant content.
Content marketing has been around for over a hundred years and takes on many forms, like blog posts, podcasts, ebooks and infographics. But it can also include long- and short-form videos, documentaries, events and print magazines. The bottom line is that all effective content marketing creates compelling stories or information.
It takes time and money to create content, so thought should be given to how you might repurpose your content across different channels and in different forms. For example, a white paper might become a video, a blog post might become a series of tweets, and so on. The smart thing to do is strategize how you are going to repurpose the content before you create it.
One of the lesser-known benefits of content marketing is that it improves SEO, or search engine optimization, because of all the people linking to your content and all the keywords in your content. Another advantage is that it positions your brand as a subject-matter expert—never a bad thing for a brand.