Content Marketing, Why Is It Important for Brands?
Do you want to build a rock-solid relationship with your prospects (to later turn them into customers) and customers (to later turn them into promoters of your brand)? Then, the production of valuable and relevant content without directly mentioning or promoting your brand is definitely a winning strategy.
As a marketer, strengthening the relationship between your company and its customer base should be your primary concern, and providing informative yet educational content (even entertaining) is proving to be a compelling positioning and brand recognition strategy these days.
Now, it doesn’t mean that you should work for nothing. But content marketing is different to direct sales. This marketing strategy uses content to prove your brand’s value by highlighting its problem-solving capabilities. The final product can be a blog, article, technical document (whitepaper, guide, manual, playbook, or eBook), video, or a social media post.
How to Win With Content Marketing?
For better results with content marketing, you must design a strategy that answers basic questions such as:
- For whom is this content intended?
- Who would find it relevant?
- What benefits will the person who consumes your material obtain?
- How can you provide a differentiated, unique experience, with the content that you create?
Once you answer these questions, it’ll be possible to design a content marketing strategy that considers the following aspects:
Objective: the purpose of this piece of content and the effect that you hope to achieve through it.
Target audience: it’s fundamental to have a clear understanding of their characteristics, needs, and interests. In other words, you need to understand who your buyer persona is. A buyer persona is a semifictional representation of your ideal customer that you build based on research on your current and past customers and some educated guesses. Don’t you know how to build them? Check this resource from HubSpot.
A unique editorial mission: in addition to good user experience and value, your approach should also be unique to match your customer needs.
What Are Good Tips for Effective Content Marketing?
When the time comes to create the content, it’s important to keep in mind that the offline reader is different from the online reader. For this reason, it’s important to consider whom do you want to read your content to address them within the necessary parameters.
Below, the elements that should be included in a content piece’s structure:
- Attractive title: A good title should consist of numbers (their specificity generates interest), a guarantee or benefit and a description that amplifies the content itself (each should be good and consistent). The title should also be clear.
- The first sentences of each piece of content should immediately capture the reader’s attention.
- The piece must have a focal point. The message that you want to leave has to be clear (a purchase or the adoption of a particular belief).
- The implementation of stories, metaphors, and complete details is always useful.
- Call to action: Content doesn’t serve a purpose if it doesn’t drive the reader to do something you are expecting him to do.
In addition to the above, it’s important to keep the following in mind:
- A deep understanding of the audience you want to reach. It may sound redundant, but it’s the most crucial point in a content marketing strategy. Don’t skimp data such as likes, age, phobias, educational level, among additional information.
- Adjust the content according to its intended medium.
- If you created the material for a digital audience, include audiovisual elements
- Always include keywords that can easily be identified by the reader.
- Be concise; avoid unnecessary sentences.
- Always maintain a personal tone, since it is a way to demonstrate that you know your audience in detail. The goal is to whisper in the reader’s ear – and with the conviction that you are an expert in the subject.
- The main idea should appear at the beginning of the text and expand from there, supplementing the information with secondary pieces of information.
One key thing to determine if a piece has been successful is the definition of performance parameters before starting the writing process. Based on such metrics, you’ll be able to measure if the piece of content has performed well, or if it’s necessary to redirect the content marketing strategy.
Just as the Content Marketing Institute suggests, the key performance indicators (KPIs) for a content marketing program are:
- Unique Visitors: This is the most basic measurement to determine how many people have seen your content within a specified period. It’s important to consider that not all unique visitors are equal since those that correspond with a white paper are much more valuable than those related to blog posts.
- Geography: Having a clear idea of the location of your readers is fundamental to know if the content is reaching prospects where it matters the most for your business.
- Mobile Readership: While it’s imperative to know the number of visitors to a piece of content, it’s also necessary to understand how readers are viewing it, as it will allow you to optimize the material and its design.
- Bounce Rate/Time Invested: It’s evident that one of your main objectives is to prevent your reader from leaving your site immediately (due to a piece of content not fulfilling their expectations. You should pay attention to it as Google can penalize your site if they notice that its visitors are not finding value). Additionally, you should know how much time a person spends consuming the material that you publish. With these two parameters, you can generate an idea of how high your content engagement is.
- Heat Maps and Click Patterns: nowadays, tools like CrazyEgg allow you to see what areas of an article are attracting the most readers (through heat maps). This indicator is handy when it comes to redesigning a webpage. Also, Google Analytics enables us to track click patterns, and it’s findings help significantly in terms of content optimization.
- Page Visits: this is an essential gauge that is often overlooked by marketers. Although it’s clear that unique visitors are relevant, it’s also necessary to understand the correlation between this number and the number of page views. Having a high number of page visits and unique visitors is an excellent indicator that your audience is engaged.
- Comments: In the age of social media, all publications are subject to feedback. Don’t restrict or block comments from your readers. Always keep in mind that your audience members are your brand’s best publicists – so, if your users feel so engaged to initiate discussions, consider it a success. Even negative comments can open opportunities for your business.
- Social Media Sharing: Creating a piece of content that is easy to share is fundamental. With just a few shares, the publication’s reach can expand exponentially.
As a takeaway, a content marketing strategy must align with an organization’s objectives, as one of the leading marketing goals is to foster loyalty among current clientele and attract new audiences. You will get there by positioning your brand’s expertise. As mentioned before, it’s not about publicizing a particular product, but instead showing your reader that if she has x or y problem, you have the perfect solution.