Over the past decade we have seen a major shift in budgets with marketeers now fully embracing the digital channel for its effectiveness, transparency and hugely targeted reach. The world of digital marketing continues to grow and develop and this is without doubt where marketeers needs to invest their time and energy to ensure they are keeping abreast of the latest innovations and fully grasping all the opportunities at their fingertips.
We have long known the benefits of content marketing, but what does this actually mean and how much time and money should marketeers invest?
One definition of content marketing is…
“Marketing that tries to attract customers by distributing information based content potentially useful to the target audience, rather than by advertising products and services in the traditional way”
In essence it is another way to engage and connect with customers online which can also drive engagement offline. Content marketing gives you another route to enable you to talk to your customers, it allows your brand voice and message to be heard through useful and insightful information. One fundamental discipline in marketing is to ensure your brand has a clear positioning and that the brand message and creative are consistent. Something that can be weakened considerably once multiple parties are set loose and this must be carefully managed online.
There are lots of ways in which you can utilise content:
3. Book reviews/reviews in general
4. Opinion posts
5. Product reviews
6. How to guides
8. Case studies
11. Research and data
However, all of these types of content need to be considered and should be used according to your overall business objectives, messaging and audience to ensure you achieve the best results. We have our favourite ways to use content and here are our Top 5 :
As per our blog on Digital Marketing Trends for 2018 it is quite clear that video marketing is key for strategy. Surveys have shown that people prefer video over text and it can lead to greater conversions. Video is a ‘relaxing’ way to absorb content, people can watch videos at any time and now with the growth of mobile phones people can watch them in any location too. By 2021, it’s predicted that 82% of internet traffic will come from video, this is up 73% from 2016.
There are many types of videos that you can create for your brand; however as long as there is a clear, distinct message within a well created video, then there are benefits to be gained.
Examples of videos you could make for your brand are; How to videos, product assemblies, company tour (gives you the chance to explain exactly what you do), ‘explanation’ videos, review videos, testimonial videos and promotional videos.
Tip: Try to keep videos between 3-4 minutes maximum, otherwise the audience may get bored.
2. How to
‘How to’s’ are a fantastic way to engage online with customers as a lot of people use the internet to search for answers to problems they experience. By writing a ‘how to’ piece you are giving a solution to that person’s problem. With over 400,000 searches every second on Google, the chances of someone searching ‘how to’ do something is pretty high. The ‘how to’ content piece gives you great long tail search potential. As you can imagine, ‘how to fix a bike tyre’ is searched for frequently, if you sell a tool that helps with fixing a bike tyre you could create content on ‘how to fix a bike tyre quickly with X’s tool’ which may appear in search results in Google and if someone finds your content it could lead to a conversion or just simply solid brand awareness.
Speak to your current customers and discuss problems they face and what your product or service helps them resolve, this will give you ideas for ‘how to’s’.
To further your ‘how to’ content piece you could add a video, pictures or diagrams to help explain the solution.
Tip: Make sure your ‘how to’ is relevant to your customer base and is going to be helpful to them. If you run a bakery don’t write a blog on how to make the best chicken stew, write a blog on how to bake the perfect banana bread.
A case study is a great way to showcase your product or service and how it has helped a customer. It gives you the chance to show your customers what you do well and it also gives them the opportunity to see the product in a real situation. A case study usually consists of a problem, a solution and the results. Try not to make your case study too ‘salesy’ as this will immediately put the audience off, make it an interesting success story of your product/service. Let the customer’s experience tell your story for you.
Tip: Use imagery/ videos and diagrams to make the case study stand out.
Infographics are a visual form of content, which include a visual presentation of data, information and knowledge. An infographic should be engaging and make people want to interact with it.
A study found that infographics are liked and shared three times more on social media than any other form of content. Due to the technological world we live in, people tend to scan read and infographics are a great way to put information in a colourful and easy to read format.
Infographics help with brand awareness and reach, in turn this will help with driving traffic to your website and hopefully impact on SEO.
Tip: Make sure the information is displayed clearly and concisely with good imagery and bold colours.
5. Lists (Example: Top 20 best tools to have in your garden shed)
Lists are a very popular form of digital content, they provide the customer with the information they need quickly, clearly and effectively – exactly what people are after.
Examples of lists;
1. Top 20 best tools to have in your garden shed
2. 8 must have beauty products for anti-ageing
3. 9 best running shoes for women
4. 3 of the healthiest diets
5. Top 15 summer must haves for the garden
Using a list for your brand is a good way to promote the different ways in which your products/services can be used and list their USP’s (unique selling points). Adding images and links helps provide more information for the customer when they are reading the list.
Tip: Make the list relevant to your product range or service offering.
How to use content effectively;
Share, Share, Share…
Don’t be afraid to share your content on your social media feed, that’s what it is there for! Your customers follow you to see more about your company, so provide them with interesting content that is useful to them and they will continue to follow or like your page. Try to avoid writing the exact same descriptions/statuses on each social media platform, try to mix it up or post on different days, as those who follow all your social media platforms don’t want to see repeated content over and over.
Use internal and external links
Use links in your content to relevant parts of your website or to your social media. This gives the customer a chance to explore what else you have to offer and it’s also great for SEO.
This is a key factor of content, make content last!
Don’t create content for the sake of it, this will only result in high bounce rates and low engagement. Evergreen content means creating content that can last a long time and still be relevant. Make content that is useful and insightful. If you do this correctly then you will have content coming out of your ears! And don’t be afraid to re-use content, the chances of people seeing it on their feeds again is quite slim and even if they do they may want to take a second read. It is important not to ‘date’ content, it needs to be current and still relevant to users if they view it six days, six weeks or in six months time.
These are just a few options when it comes to digital content marketing, but there are more available, you can also mix and match different types of content e.g. A ‘Top six backpacks for running video’. Content marketing is a great tool for business and it works hand in hand with other aspects of marketing. Content marketing complements social media marketing, digital marketing, SEO and offline marketing. If you can add content marketing into your marketing strategy you will be sure to see results online and potentially reap the benefits offline too.
Our digital marketing and social media marketing team are here to help with all your questions. So, to find out more about how we can add value to your strategy, or to even write a strategy for you, please contact us on 01603 252555 or fill in a contact us form.