What is content marketing?
As per 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.
Why is it important?
In today’s 24/7 world, content is considered to be the king. Do you realize where a decision is made by today’s consumers? It will not be at a point of sale. Most of the top brands make sales based on decisions made behind their backs. And this is where content marketing comes in. You have to be present across channels. Only then your consumers will know about your brand, search about you on social media, go through the reviews, and take action. Content marketing helps create brand awareness and generate revenue over some time.
What are your objectives?
It’s very easy to get carried away in the chaos. But please don’t. It’s gonna hurt your brand real hard. Instead, come up with a clear set of objectives. Write it down. Review it with your team. Always start with your product. Then target the channels that you think are important for you. Have a plan of action. A strategy of what happens when. Define the thresholds, parameters, and KPIs that will ultimately help you determine whether you were right or wrong.
Define your budget
It all boils down to money, right? Wrong. Always spend based on the perceived ROI and not whether an investment is expensive or not. Content marketing as a tool is tried and tested to yield results. It depends on the approach you would take and the money you are ready to spend. It is always advisable to be liberal when it comes to content marketing spends. And don’t forget to take a longer-term approach.
Who is your target audience?
The clearer you are about your target market and audience, the easier it will be to get what you want from them. It is important to understand your audience’s needs and pain points for you to address the issues. Also, keep in mind that segmenting your audience will enable you to send personalized messages based on specific customer behavior and will help create trust quickly.
Types of content marketing
There are several types of content marketing. Chances are you are familiar with almost all of them. But the real issue here is that every type of content requires a different strategy of its own. And that’s where things get a bit challenging. Following are the key types of content:
- Social media marketing
- Search engine optimization
- Pay per click ads
Content delivery channels
Once you know your audience and are clear about the objectives, now is the time to put your thoughts into action. Understand what kind of content will go well with your audience segments. Some might like helpful blogs, some would fall in love with your humorous content and lovely photos on Instagram and others would probably find you on youtube. The best and worst part is that you wouldn’t know what works till that works. And you have to be out there on multiple channels to be discovered and loved.
However mundane this might seem, our advice, don’t ignore this. It’s all about timing! All big brands would tell you a few stories that worked for them at the beginning, that ultimately helped them be who they are today. Similarly, if you can exploit market gaps and can communicate your solutions, guess what, you are on the path of establishing yourself in the position of authority. Consider the time of day, day of the week, seasonality, etc. factors while deciding upon content scheduling.
Run A/B tests
We can’t emphasize more on this point. Make sure to try out different types of content, different images, different delivery times, and so on to identify what works best for you. Unfortunately, there is no one size fits all solution here. You have to keep tweaking different parameters and double down on the winning strategies and ignore the losers.
Measure & Optimize
The good news is that almost everything that you will be doing can be measured. It is highly recommended for your benefit to keep monitoring the campaign outcomes in terms of blog views, video downloads, app downloads, revenue generated (as applicable) so that you can understand your mistakes and keep tweaking the process to generate maximum ROI.