If you are engaging in content marketing for your business, you obviously know how important it is. As marketers, we are hardwired to be great content producers and also understand the tools and channels available. However, good content marketing is a whole lot more than just that. Regardless of whether you are a seasoned veteran or a rookie, your marketing content must be produced with a multi-purpose objective and strategy.
It's Not Just About Producing Content
If you already started content marketing, you know it was not just about producing content. It's about producing content to accomplish goals, reach customers, nurture them through to the sale, and of course tell the brand story. And these are just a few of the components. Together, these should all help drive sales funnel growth, customer traffic and increase sales. Check out what the Content Marketing Institute has to say:
Content marketing is the practice of creating relevant and compelling content in a consistent fashion to a targeted buyer, focusing on all stages of the buying process, from brand awareness through to brand evangelism.
Whether you have already started with content marketing or haven't started at all, It's never too late to begin. Here are some tips to point you in the right direction. Start by asking yourself one question.
What Do I Want To Accomplish With Content Marketing?
This isn't as difficult as it may sound. Here are some common answers to the question, what do I want to accomplish with content marketing? These are also goals you should think about before you implement your content marketing strategy.
· Expand Your Brand Digital Footprint
· Educate The Customer On The Product
· Create Brand Awareness
· Create Customer Loyalty
· Increase Customer Engagement
· Create Relevant Content Based On Your Target
· Create A Conversion Path: From Prospect to
Customer to Brand Ambassador
· Know the customer touch points along the conversion
· Nurture The Customer Experience All The Way
Through The Sales Funnel
Use social media for the right reasons, you'll be glad you did. Social media is an absolute must for good content marketing. The 9 bullets above are all candidates for mini-strategies in which your content can be created and posted on social media.
When you decide to "Expand Your Digital Footprint" as listed above, one of the best ways to accomplish this is to use social media. If you are currently using one social media channel, say Facebook, try opening up your brand to Twitter, LinkedIn or others. You will have a different age range and flavor of people on each of them, so take advantage of that. Here are some statistics from the Pew Research Internet Project that will help you understand each social media channel better.
Think about who your customer is and begin posting based on the audience you want to reach and the topic of the post you think will be most effective in reaching that recipient. Content-to-customer relevance is king. Here's an example. A LinkedIn post will be written differently than a tweet, or a Facebook post, all because the people who frequent those channels can be different in age and also on that channel for different reasons. You also need to think about how the social channel manages and distributes the content on the social channel you're using.
If your content posts are relevant and engaging, the recipient will most likely "like" it and maybe even share it with their sphere of influence. That is one way to take advantage of social's strengths. You can use social media to create a dialogue with the customer, drive them to a landing page on your website, connect with the brand or share your content. They can also be a brand ambassador for your company by sharing their own stories. You just might be surprised how frequently your content gets shared.
Don't forget about the customer path. It's critical to understand where your customer is so you can modify your content based on where they are in the sales funnel path. They might be just entering the sales funnel and need to be educated, (this is the top of the funnel), or be deep in the funnel ready to make a purchase (almost at the bottom of the funnel). This matters, and your content should be produced knowing where the customer is in the sales funnel.
Hashtags are critical for your social posts to be recognized far beyond the friend or follower receiving it. Use a hashtag if you want to tell the world about your topic and expose it to others who are also using that hashtag. The # is the way to get your content post more targeted visibility. For instance, if you wrote a post about your product video, you may write this (video and carpet are the keys here).
o See our #video explaining 5 ways to clean your #carpet (then add your URL here)
Create it once and share it many times. This is a phrase you need to keep on your mind 24x7. One of the most important things you can do with all of your content marketing is to create it once and share it as much as possible (without going overboard). You don't want your content to be out there by itself - share it with others. If your content is alone and not shared on many other channels, then you need to get that started immediately. Repurposing content is critical to increasing exposure many times over.
These are just a few tactical ways to propel your content marketing to new levels. It's not instant. However, if you can follow these basic guidelines, your content marketing will be on the road to capturing more qualified leads and converting those leads into sales sooner than you think.