While you may be familiar with the term, you, like many others, may be unclear what content marketing entails.
The Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing as follows:
“…a marketing technique of creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and acquire a clearly defined audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.”
The significant terms in that definition are “valuable” and “relevant.” By including those words in its definition of content marketing, the Content Marketing Institute differentiates content marketing from other forms of advertising and marketing.
How can you tell if a piece of content marketing is valuable and relevant? In general, if content marketing is valuable and relevant, people will actively seek it out. They will have a desire to consume the content instead of trying to get away from it by closing a window or leaving a website.
Of course, you can’t control whether someone considers your content valuable. While that’s the case, you can greatly increase the chances that people will view your content marketing as valuable by defining your target market and creating content that’s directly relevant and potentially valuable to as many people in your target market as possible.
Why Is Content Marketing Important?
Content marketing is important because it has the very real potential to drive traffic to your website, generate leads, and increase conversions. It can do these things because it can heavily influence the first two steps of the buying process, awareness and research. Because content marketing is typically more informational than a traditional ad with a hard sell, consumers will generally turn to this kind of material more readily when they realize they have a need and want to research a solution for it.
This gives you the chance to use content marketing to educate consumers about the solutions your company provides for the problems and needs they’re grappling to resolve even though they may never have heard about your goods or services before. This positions you well to close sales as people are considering their options and making their purchases down the line.
If you’re still doubtful about the power of content marketing, consider the following benefits it can provide:
It Builds Trust
In general, shoppers prefer to get to know companies through articles instead of ads. Because articles are largely informational, your content marketing efforts can help you establish trust with consumers. The more valuable, relevant content you generate, the more you’ll be seen as an expert in your field. Since many people are eager to turn to experts to resolve their problems, they’ll trust you over your competitors.
Establishes or Improves Brand Visibility
Having an established brand greatly increases the likelihood that shoppers will do business with you instead of someone else. If you’re just starting out, you can use content marketing to establish your unique identity and explain how your business and your products or services are superior to alternatives. If your company has been around for a while, you can still use content marketing to expand your brand’s visibility and introduce your company and its goods or services to new audiences.
Accounts for Organic Searches
Content marketing is an effective tool you can use to leverage the results of organic searches in favor of your business. You simply have to gear your content marketing toward your business and its goods or services ranking well in organic, local searches.
Generates Leads and Conversions
The point of any kind of marketing, including content marketing, is to generate leads and attract buyers. As was mentioned earlier, content marketing is effective at getting the attention of consumers long before they’ve even decided to make a purchase. Shoppers gain an interest in your business as a result of your informational content, they get even more valuable, relevant information when they visit your website and that information can convert them over time.
Content marketing isn’t just useful when it comes to creating leads out of people who were previously unaware of your company and its goods or services. It’s also effective at making your website immediately available for people who are already familiar with you and are actively looking for your business or your products or services.
Encourages Sharing on Social Media
People often share the things they like and digital content is not an exception. By producing valuable content that directly relates to the members of your target market, you greatly increase the odds that people will share your content with their friends and family members on social media. If they do, it can dramatically increase the number of people who consume your content, which can increase traffic to your website as well as your conversions.
When people share your content on social media, it’s somewhat akin to word-of-mouth advertising because it’s as if they’re personally endorsing your business and the goods or services you sell. If you get enough shares and increased traffic, content marketing has the power to level the playing field between small businesses and larger, more established companies.
Brings People Back
Effective content marketing will bring people back to your website over and over again. That’s because your business will be seen as a valuable resource for resolving problems and satisfying needs thanks to content that is truly valuable and really relevant to the lives of consumers. Using content marketing in email campaigns and to build active, online communities are great ways to convince consumers to return to your website and sustain interest in your business, content and your goods or services.
While blogging is a smart way to start your content marketing efforts, it normally takes time for a blog to produce the results many business owners are hoping to achieve. For more immediate results, contact GoingClear Interactive. Since 2001, we’ve been helping businesses maximize their online presence and we can help you do the same.
At GoingClear Interactive, we’re as passionate about your brand and success as you are and we’ll develop and implement a content marketing strategy that will generate the results you’re looking for. Contact GoingClear Interactive to learn more now.