Content marketing is not a new concept, but it is one that has become exponentially more important. Its benefits span the entire marketing spectrum, but its strengths are particularly helpful with brand awareness and lead generation, largely because of its strong ability to influence SEO and purchase consideration. Whether you work in a B2B environment or B2C, not being actively involved in content marketing will allow your competition to gain a competitive edge over your business. As you embark on what might be a new marketing journey, I encourage you to consider these five pieces of advice to help ensure your content marketing strategy is effective.
1) Consider your audience
2) Make the content useful
4) Use Images
5) Less is more
Consider your audience. When planning your content and editorial calendar, it can sometimes be easy to forget what it is that you want to communicate and who it is that you’re trying to influence. Too many times we have seen content that loses focus and begins to encompass a variety of areas, lacking a central theme. By ensuring that your content has a purpose, and that its purpose is relevant to what your audience is looking for, you establish yourself as a credible and trustworthy source of information – value that can’t be quantified.
Make your content useful. This point cannot be stated enough. The reality is that it’s no longer about you. Consumers and B2B buyers don’t care about you as much as they care about whether their needs and wants are being satisfied in a cost-efficient manner. Provide them with what they are looking for, and the minds of the buyers will do the rest. People naturally feel more comfortable doing business with those they trust and those who are helpful. If you can establish yourself as both, you are in good shape.
“Create Once, Publish Everywhere.” The whole purpose of creating content is for it to be seen. Without visibility, you just spent hours, days or even weeks developing something that nobody will notice. To ensure that you’re getting the most from your investment, publish your content in as many places as you can – company blog, social networks, SlideShare and media outlets that accept bylines are great places to start.
Use images. Images are a great way to break up the monotony of long-form text. Not only does imagery help keep the reader engaged but it also contributes to your SEO . Be sure to include a relevant image name and alternative text caption on the back end to increase image search results.
Less is more. This is not a universal rule; the point here is that, when developing content, don’t add fluff. Attention spans of today’s consumer/buyer are short, and if a reader doesn’t find what he is looking for right away, you risk losing him to someone else.
What other advice would you offer to those looking to enhance their content marketing efforts? Leave a comment below or tweet me at @a2ggour or @airfoilgroup.