Interest in content marketing is not new. In 1732, Benjamin Franklin, one of the parents of the US Declaration of Independence, began to publish an almanac through which he promoted his business, a printing house. What Ben F. then understood and understand today’s marketers is the fact that content generates confidence, and trust is the test each business has to pass in front of its customers.
The focus on content marketing is relatively new. The Internet era has only increased the need for original, quality, advisory and non-selling content offered in attractive formats to current and potential customers.
Why this increased attention to content marketing? Because traditional methods of generating differentiation and notoriety do not work as efficiently as ever, and/or require large budgets. A study by DemandMetric shows that, compared to traditional marketing, content marketing costs 62% less and can generate 3 times more leads.
On the other hand, although 93% of marketers say they are into content marketing, 87% say they have problems creating engaging content for social media networks. In order to have such results, the content we offer must educate, inspire and motivate. Thus, we have the next 6 steps for a powerful content marketing strategy.
- Set SMART goals – It is essential to start by finding the SMART answers to the following questions: Why do content marketing? Do we want our brand awareness to increase? Do we want our sales to increase? The goal is not to be good at content marketing, but to do good business through content marketing.
- Identify the differentiators – Here the question from which to start are the following: What is special and unique about your business and what kind of original content can you generate? Often the answer is not related to your products/services, but something more important. It’s about how, through your business, you want to make the difference in the lives of other people.
- Set proper KPIs – Your goals will dictate your key performance indicators. If you want to get leads, you will not measure brand awareness. In content marketing, we have 4 types of indicators: consumer, distribution, lead generation and sales indicators. For 87% of marketers, the most important indicator is the quality of the leads, followed by sales (84%), conversion rates (82%) and quantity of the lead (74%).
- Understand the real needs – Content is also dictated by the target audiences you choose. The questions you should ask are: Who are my customers? What do they want? What do they appreciate? What influences them? What type of content do they want? Once you have the answers to these questions, it organizes the content by target audience categories and stages of the purchase process.
- Prepare the content – It is important not to make content marketing out of inertia. You do not have to have a blog/vlog because it’s fashionable, but to meet the content expectations of the target audiences relevant for your business. So, do whatever you can to find out what kind of content those people want. It is equally important to provide easy-to-consume content during the ATTENTION and INTENTION stage. On the other hand, for the DESIRE and ACTION stage, you need more consistent content elements (case studies, expert articles, etc.) to close the sale.
- Amplify the content – Once you’ve created your content, you need to make it visible. Consider the content as the spark, and social media as the gasoline. Of course, you have to declinate the content accordingly on every social media platform. But especially, you have to bear in mind the fact that content marketing is not about making brochures (or articles, or posts). It is all about offering information, motivation, and inspiration to your existing and potential clients.