It’s a new day in a new year and we’re just getting started with more digital marketing and content marketing topics. Today’s topic, I would like to focus on content marketing. I wondered; does it still matter after all these years? In the back of my mind, I know content continues to drive and spearheads business forward but I had to wonder; is everything exclusively about content creation just for the sake of it? Or has the attitudes towards content marketing changed across the years?
Bare Bones of Content Marketing
What is content marketing? You’ve heard the term thrown everywhere but do you know what it means? Content marketing is exactly as it sounds; it’s the effort to market content that resonates with your target audience. Content comes in a spectrum of forms (which falls under digital marketing) and most common types of content include blogs, articles (such as this one), pictures, podcasts, email marketing, social media marketing, video marketing, and so forth. All produced content must fall under these four categories: educate, inspire, persuade, and entertain. Never forget this.
Everything you read on the internet is content made to please your eyeballs and resonate with your inner feelings. That’s pretty much the basics of it.
So, what are the types of content available on the internet? Look below.
So, what’s the purpose of these mediums? It’s about creating a meaningful relationship with your consumers with the help of content. Think of it as a partnership; you supply your customers with meaningful information and they, in turn, are convinced to choose you and your services. Perhaps you wonder, how hard is it to create meaningful content. Well, it’s hard but not overwhelmingly difficult.
Where do I start?
Create: Creating original content is difficult as-is. Don’t create content because everyone’s doing it; create something unique with your brand’s tone-of-voice. This is how you can establish a relationship with your readers. You can definitely do this in house but mind you, it will be time consuming. Or you can outsource it, up to you.
However, remember that outsourcing can be a double-edged sword. Despite how good a freelancer or a outsourcing company is, it’ll take them awhile to capture your brand’s voice and products. Hire them with a grain of salt. It takes time to find the ideal, not perfect, wordsmith and creative guru.
Curate: Curation is a powerful form of content marketing that drives awareness both directly and indirectly. Companies such as Buzzfeed and thrive on original content with catchy titles, even if the meat of the post is rubbish. People flock to read them and if the published article or pictures resonate with the readers, it immediately goes viral (for tickling something inside them). Companies such as Buzzfeed produce content hourly to satisfy the needs of their readers. Virality drives traffic on these websites.
Sharing: If there’s one thing people like to do, it’s the love of sharing content, despite how silly they could be.
Your end goal are conversions. Good content creates conversions. However, you can’t just only think about selling 24/7. That’s not how businesses work anymore (this isn’t the 90’s!). Now, you have to focus on cultivating brand awareness and building a relationship from the get-go. You have to create a library of content to test your audience’s reaction and reception. Sometimes, posted content can be a simple quote post or meme post. It does wonders sometimes. Don’t be afraid to fail. Learn from your mistakes. Not everything is pioneered by articles; some people like to watch and listen rather than read droves and droves of words. And let’s be real; articles help with SEO rankings. (With that being said, you should know how to properly implement SEO and not abuse it.) Your posts should be short and sweet.
I think that content marketing will continue to matter in 2019 and beyond. I feel that content will continue to evolve as business moves forward. Nonetheless, the nature of the content might change as the years roll on but I think its core principals should remain the same; delivering information, entertaining audiences, persuading them, and spark inspiration in them. Never forget who you’re writing for and how you want your audience to perceive you. Every written word or graphic tells people who you are and what you represent. Never, ever forget that.
Everything you create for the internet is content. In the past, content might serve as an information portal. However, nowadays it should exceed such thoughts; everything created should supply the readers with value. Content marketing will continue to pick up speed and who knows; perhaps in the future it could evolve to something entirely different or something every business must follow until conversions are guaranteed.