Content Marketing is being helpful and adding value to your customers lives through great content.
It’s about your customer. Not about you.
Content can establish your brand and make your unique angle stand out like a beacon.
What makes you different? Your content marketing will tell the world.
At it’s heart, Content Marketing is the exact opposite of traditional marketing which shouts and pleads with customers to buy, buy, buy! Today’s customer is more astute and very good at blocking out sales pitches. Pop-up blockers, ad blockers and banner blindness has led to a decline in the effectiveness of traditional online marketing: banners, interruption-style ads, pop-ups, pop-unders and the rest are all more and more easily ignored.
Content Marketing is subtle. It’s building a loyal following of people who like what you have to say – and as a result they like your brand too which makes them much more willing to buy from you.
Are you helping a potential customer with helpful info? That’s content marketing. Are you educating someone in a non-pushy way? Yep, content marketing too. Are you entertaining people and making them feel good so that you drop your brand into that warm and cosy place in their hearts? Yes – content marketing.
Content marketing is not hard-sell. It’s not pushy. It doesn’t interrupt.
Think about Content Marketing as that very friendly host at a party who mingles with the crowd and makes sure everyone is happy and talking to each other. She doesn’t stand in the corner with a megaphone shouting about how awesome she is. Content Marketing is a generous facilitator and enabler.
What are you famous for?
Content Marketing helps your brand establish itself with a unique voice – giving it life, personality and a humanity that is totally missing from regular advertising.
Here’s a fun exercise:
Go to the home page of your website and print it out. Do the same for a handful of your main competitors. Now remove the branding and logos from each site. Can you tell who’s who?
If your brand’s voice is clear and bold enough, with a distinct personality, you will be able to tell it apart from everyone else in your industry.
And that’s hugely important in a world where everyone has competitors gnawing at their heels.
What about the Marketing?
Content Marketing sells – but not in a slap-you-in-the-face and annoy you kind of way. It subconsciously makes people like you. When people talk about your industry, content marketing helps your brand come up in the conversation.
The result? Better conversions. Better retention. More profitable customers. And who doesn’t want that?
Is Content Marketing free?
Content Marketing costs time and money but it’s money well spent if done right. You’ll invest in great content: excellent copywriters and brilliant designers. You’ll spend money in promoting your content through promoted posts on social media platforms. You’ll produce videos and animations.
You’ll be able to measure some of the positive effects of content marketing but not all. For example, you won’t be able to measure how likable your brand has become as a result of an excellent blog post. You might see the result indirectly when the person who read the blog post tells their friend about your brand. That person might decide to buy from you but you won’t know it’s because of that great blog post you did. That’s life – not everything is measurable.
So what are the benefits of content marketing?
If you put your customer first and build everything you say and do around that special person who might buy from you, you’ll reap the rewards.
You’ll use content marketing to help your customers and in return they will buy from you because they like you. This means they’ll become advocates and tell other people how great you are and your business will grow. The opportunities are limitless when you do right by your customers.
Everything the light touches, Simba
What is content? Ann Handley of Marketing Profs often uses the analogy of Mufasa talking to his son Simba:
“Everything the light touches is content, Simba”
The message is this:
Content is every interaction your potential or existing customers have with your brand.
Make sure your content is working hard for you.
Where do we find content marketing?
Content Marketing is everywhere:
- Email marketing
- Social media posts
- Blog posts
- SEO meta titles and descriptions
- Press releases
- Web copy
- Paid advertising
- eBooks and how-to guides
These channels, and more, are where you can use content to make your customer’s day. And we can help you do that with our content marketing services.
A few shining examples of content marketing
Taco Bell on Snap Chat
Why do we love this?
Taco Bell is connecting with its millennial audience by talking in their language with real-time content – emojis included. Two young Snap Chatters tell the story of Taco Bell in a way that isn’t hard sell but really makes sense to the audience.
Backstories from Backcountry
Why we love this
Backcountry sells products for hiking, camping, fishing, adventuring, 4×4 and more. Using video, it made the brands it sells come to life by interviewing the founders of the products to reveal the backstory behind how these products were created.
Black Milk Clothing on social media
Why we love this
Black Milk is an online clothing retailer who has taken to using Facebook in a very effective way – without ever paying to promote a post or gain a like. How? They turned their customers into advocates who take selfies and share them on social media. And now they have more than 700k fans on Facebook who love their brand.
Coca-Cola on Pinterest
Why do we love this?
Coca-Cola gets how people use Pinterest and the images it post to Pinterest delivers on its brand promise. It publishes user-generated images from Flickr onto its Pinterest board and keeps brand consistency by using the Coca Cola red throughout.
Got more examples?
Let me know on Twitter or comment below.
I’m excited about making the world a better place through content. Let’s go!