What is content marketing?
Every marketer will be asked this question, either by a client or a new date, at some point. And many of us struggle to explain what it is that we do during working hours in a simple way.
According to the Content Marketing Institute,
"Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience - and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action."
Content marketing isn’t producing an infographic every other month, writing copy full of keywords to rank higher, or stuffing a website with deep pages that provide little value for users.
So what, other than infographics, is content marketing?
Any engaging content a brand creates and strategically shares with its target audience - blog posts, tweets, product descriptions, ... - is content marketing. Here’s a few examples.
Lead generation pieces
Any downloadable resource is a great way to collect email addresses, generate leads, and provide your users with valuable content.
Video is on the rise this year as people are changing the way they consume content.
If you’ve got a good budget for it, video can help you connect with your audience in a special way and even generate leads.
Unique data is a great asset to own - it can help position your brand as an authority in your field and, if the sample is big enough (1,000 respondents), generate media coverage.
For example, what's your biggest marketing challenge? Tell us using the form below:
So yes, there is much more to content marketing than infographics.
How it all works
When coming up with a plan to drive traffic and engagement to your site, you need to keep in mind:
- your brand’s personality and tone of voice
- the sort of content your audience will engage with (a great idea with a suitable format)
- where they are going to see it (a channel they typically use)
- where in the customer journey they are (awareness, knowledge, or close to conversion?)
- what objectives each of your tactics will satisfy.
The last point is the most important.
What do you want your users to do? Download a whitepaper, sign up to your newsletter, or buy your insurance package? Or would you like new people to visit your site?
Different content will satisfy different objectives.
A social media competition will generate brand awareness, social reach and social shares as well as driving new followers. On the other hand, a product video on a dedicated landing page will be more suitable to trigger conversions, especially if the page features a clear call to action and you direct users to it through PPC ads.
Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.
You’ll need to create multiple pieces of content and attract different segments of your target audience to them through different channels. That is why writing a good resource section or starting a company blog isn’t enough to generate results.
One last thing.
Content marketing needs time and a lot of work to be successful. It won’t provide a quick turnaround, so don’t judge a campaign’s performance after a few months.
Nurture your content, share it and promote it for as long as you can, keep on blogging, become a thought leader and you’ll see the results come through.
What is your definition of content marketing?
See you next time!
P.s. Have you downloaded our free content calendar?
Start scheduling content like a boss with our free, annual content calendar. To get yours, just pop your details in the form below: