The B2B and B2C marketing industries are highly competitive but full of rich opportunities to be seen and heard. Your company can build a loyal following on various platforms, establish itself as an expert in your field, and engage with your customers. But with so many businesses doing the same thing on a multitude of websites, social media platforms, and other digital marketing outlets, how can you distinguish your company?
Your company must be willing to invest in content marketing. This form of marketing is strategic and effective in doing all the right things for your company. Read on to learn what content marketing is and how it can benefit your company.
What is Content Marketing?
According to the Content Marketing Institute, content marketing involves creating and distributing consistent, relevant, and valuable content that attracts a specific audience. This is done to drive profitable leads and sales.
For content marketing to be effective, the content must be valuable. Many companies make the mistake of circulating lots of content that is not valuable to their target audience. Being consistent isn’t enough if the content is void of the information, solutions, or guidance your audience wants. The objective is to provide as much value as possible via your circulated content. It will get and hold the attention of potential customers and keep them coming back for more.
Examples of Content Marketing
There are many types of content marketing, here are only a few examples. You’re only limited by your own creativity.
Some of the most popular podcasts can be downloaded over 250,000 times per month. They provide a platform for you to display your expertise and passion for your industry. And, of course, it’s an opportunity to give great value to your audience. People don’t just buy from brands; they buy from people they trust.
Writing a book will show just how much of an expert you are in your field or how amazing your company is. A good book will be purchased, recirculated, and recommended for years. It’s a great return for your initial investment. It can drive customers your way for years! With self-publishing becoming more straightforward, you don’t have to wait to be published. Write your book and get it out there. Even if it doesn’t catch on quickly, you can add ‘published author’ to your bio.
We’ve all been captivated by videos on YouTube, TikTok, Facebook, and other social media platforms. Your video could be of a talk you’ve given where you provided a lot of valuable information for the audience, or it might be a short-form video where you explain concepts and ideas to your audience. Would so many of us be fans of Gary V (Vaynerchuk) if not for his multitude of videos – long and short form? Producing and sharing videos is easier than you think.
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The Benefits of Content Marketing
Now that you know what content marketing is, here are some of the benefits to encourage you to invest in this type of marketing.
Establish Yourself as an Industry Expert
Providing expert, valuable content consistently will draw people to you and your company. They will see you as a leader in the field and the go-to person or company when they need answers. If you do it right, you’ll find that other businesses refer to your content when sharing their own content. You will build authority and a good reputation and rank higher in online searches.
If your audience is receiving value from you and your content, there is no reason for them to stop following you. We feel an attraction to people who are there for us when we most need them. That feeling can be experienced by your customers when they need answers, inspiration, or information, and your content is there for them. This is a feeling that easily generates love and loyalty.
Build Brand Awareness
If you produce high-quality content that Google loves, it will generate brand awareness that you couldn’t pay for! Google has over 246 million unique users in the U.S. and over 5 billion daily searches worldwide. So, if you wrote an article for your company blog site, and it eventually ranks number 1 on Google for searches about that exact topic (whatever it is). Your content could be seen by tens or even hundreds of thousands of people every month. That number significantly increases when you consider other keywords and search terms associated with the one you used.
Content marketing is inexpensive in that it only costs time. But your initial investment will continue to give you returns for months or even years to come. You may or may not see great growth or sales right away. Don’t be discouraged. You now have bodies of valuable content out there that people will find and keep finding.
You Control the Conversation
Content marketing is about sales and connection. When your target audience is out looking for the goods or services you provide, you need to be able to speak into that decision-making process. With your content available to them when they’re online researching, you get to influence them. You can help them see the value in what you offer, even if they weren’t initially looking in that direction. Not entering the conversation until they have already made up their mind about what they want could leave you out in the cold.
Content marketing has many more benefits than these we’ve listed. It’s a safe, inexpensive way to establish yourself as an expert in your industry, connect with your target audience, and become a known and respected brand. What’s not to love? It’s an investment of your time, creativity, and a little courage – but you’re an entrepreneur, so you have those things.
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