Content marketing is an absolutely essential part of a comprehensive, omnichannel marketing strategy, but it’s also one form of marketing that seems to raise a lot of questions – what is it exactly? How does one go about creating and implementing a strategy? What counts as ‘content’? Who should write it? What if I have more than one marketing channel? Can I understand and measure who sees my content?
It’s a long list, and quite often there is a gap between the perception of the answer, and the actual answer itself.
To help you debunk some of the myths around those questions, we’ve got a guide to Content Marketing below…
1. Content Marketing is NOT copywriting or traditional advertising
What is content marketing? It’s the creation of interesting, valuable content that gives your target audience information about things that interest them and helps them make better decisions (hopefully through your digital platform, which benefits you).
This content can be surfaced to your audience using a range of formats including blog posts or news articles, case studies, how-to articles and features, videos, podcasts and more.
Copywriting is hard-sell content that can be used in adverts, advertorials and paid marketing, that is normally characterised by a Call to Action.
2. Your website is just one channel – don’t limit yourself!
Your digital home – your website – is a crucial part of your business, and the place you want to drive customers to so that you can encourage engagement, whether that’s getting enquiries, driving sales or giving information. But your website is just one channel for getting your content marketing out to your audience – your strategy should include publishing content on Facebook, LinkedIn, via email, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and more.
The key is to assess who your target audience is and where they spend most of their time, digitally-speaking. Then select the channels that best suit their browsing habits and make sure you’re visible there!
3. Text is just one form of content
Writing great articles (or commissioning them from writers) is a great way to start your campaigns, but don’t limit yourself – images, infographics, videos, podcasts, audio files and slideshows can also be highly-effective ways to deliver quality content.
You can either produce content in-house or outsource it to a team of content producers who really understand your business, objectives, audience and value proposition. And you can scale your budget to suit – another great aspect of content marketing is its flexibility: produce in-house on your own time when you don’t want to spend money, or outsource when you have some budget and want to do something that’s perhaps outside your skillset.
4. Quality is always a better option than Quantity
You may be tempted to push out hordes of content with the hope of flooding your chosen marketing channels and gaining visibility, however the truth of the matter is that content marketing is about delivering real, tangible (and brand-building) value to your target audience. As such, it is far better to give insightful, thoughtful and useful pieces of content less often than to simply send out generic or low-quality content for the sake of it. Doing so is only likely to irritate or alienate any potential customers, which is the last thing you want!
5. Content Marketing is measurable!
Technology has moved apace over the past decade or so, giving marketers (and site owners) the chance to delve in-depth into the behaviour of target audiences and customers using a number of metrics. As it’s evolved, content marketing has aligned with this trend of metric analysis to give you a wide range of insights and performance measurements for content pieces. These tools vary from platform to platform but either way, you’ll have what you need to reinvest time and effort into your ongoing strategy.