Published on March 4, 2014
CONTENT MARKETING Not Just Pushing the Share Button
Content Marketing Content marketing assists advertisers in communicating messages like never before. Content marketing is any marketing format that involves the creation and sharing of media and publishing content in order to acquire customers. It assists advertisers by providing their customers with a reason to visit, offers, entertainment and education to name a few ways. It also assists advertisers with being found in search, and improves organic ranking. 2
Content needs to be more than just text. It should be a mixture of types that can target the various ways different people consume information. Formats include: • • • • White papers E-books Infographics Case studies • • • • How-to guides Q+A articles Photos Videos The focus is not on selling, but on simply communicating with customers and prospects. The idea is to inspire business and loyalty from buyers by delivering consistent, ongoing, valuable and engaging information.
Content Marketing Tactics (2012)
SOCIAL MEDIA Content Marketing With Social Media With all the social media formats available to marketers, it can be tough to create a content marketing strategy that effectively uses social media. After Twitter and LinkedIn, YouTube and SlideShare have been rated as the second most effective form for content marketing. Choose your platform based on content Serious brand-focused content is best placed on blogs, Twitter, LinkedIn. While casual customer centric content thrives on Facebook and YouTube. The key to good content marketing on social media is to build a rich content platform and link it across various social media sites. This will multiply reach, virality and conversations, leading to increased buzz, multiple inbound links, better searchability and scale.
6 STEPS TO A SOCIAL MEDIA CONTENT CAMPAIGN Following these 6 steps is a surefire way to kick start your social media content marketing campaign: 1. Create a content strategy 1. 2. Set social media goals which tie back to overall business goals Allocate a minimum of 20% of social media budgets for content creation 3. Have a distribution plan in place to link the content property across social platforms 1. 2. Measure success against the goals set Have relative benchmarks to build on social media plans Keys to creating engaging social media content: • Listen – don’t pitch • Entertain – make people laugh • Educate – share helpful information • Listen some more • Ask questions – solicit feedback/market research • Be transparent and accountable to the community
WHITE PAPERS White Papers White papers used in content marketing are long-form papers designed to promote the products or services from a specific company. As a marketing tool, these papers use selected facts and logical arguments to build a case favorable to your brand. Many of these white papers argue that one particular technology, product or method is superior for solving a specific business problem. They may also present research findings, list a set of questions or tips about a certain business issue, or highlight a particular product or service from a vendor. They are often used to generate sales leads, establish thought leadership, make a business case, or inform and persuade prospective customers, channel partners, journalists, analysts, or investors.
WHITE PAPER: TYPES White papers can be broken down into 3 main types: 1) Backgrounder: Describes the technical and/or business benefits of a certain vendor's offering, either a product, service, or methodology. This type of white paper is best used to supplement a product launch, argue a business case, or support a technical evaluation at the bottom of the sales funnel. 2) Numbered list: Presents a set of tips, questions, or points about a certain business issue. This type is best used to get attention with new or provocative views. 3) Problem/solution: Recommends a new, improved solution to a nagging business problem. This type is best used to generate leads at the top of the sales funnel.
BLOGGING Content Marketing Blogs Business or corporate blogs are social media and content marketing tools used by companies to provide valuable, interesting content for customers, employees, industry media and other target audiences. Ideally, blog content fulfills a potential or existing customer’s need for information at some point in the purchasing cycle, in order to assist them in making a buying decision. Another benefit of content marketing blogs is to position your brand’s blog as a useful resource for industry information and not just as a sales tool. This keeps your brand in your targets mind and can increase brand loyalty. Definition of Blogging: Blogging is a form of content publishing through a content management system such as Blogger, Typepad or WordPress that often publishes articles, video, images or audio in reverse chronological form.
BLOGGING: PROS AND CONS As with any content marketing tactic, there are advantages and disadvantages to blogging: Pros Cons • Excellent tool for brand awareness, authority building, storytelling and passive sales messaging. • Can be time consuming to create content. • Requires a publisher mindset from brands possibly not used to this model. • Low barrier to entry with no technical or IT • Requires planning, organization and skills required to contribute content. editorial control, particularly with multiple • Ability to measure and track performance. authors. • Flexible platforms with multimedia capabilities to distribute information in a variety of formats. • SEO benefits; enhanced visibility in front of people seeking a specific type of information. • Attract new customers, engage existing ones and convert both to buy – more and more often. • Creative, unique content can be a challenge.
MICROSITES Content Marketing With Microsites One of the main reasons to create a microsite is to give your target consumer a hyper-focused website that meets the needs of a specific search query – and to satisfy Google’s Quality Score criteria, which will provide your brand with further reach. Lead generation is another great reason to create a microsite for your brand. You don’t want your prospective leads to get lost on a larger company website or homepage. Creating and optimizing a landing page for your sales leads could improve your conversion rates by as high as 200%. Ultimately, the purpose of a microsite is to provide deeper content that’s easier to consume than the brand’s homepage.
MICROSITE: PROS AND CONS As with any content marketing tactic, there are advantages and disadvantages to creating a microsite: Pros Cons • Visitors can quickly navigate to the content most relevant to their search. •Forces users to adapt to different user interfaces if they stumble across the microsite while exploring the main site. • Marketers can use the data from those choices to easily segment their audience. • • You can build microsites around a set of reusable templates. Microsites can often be deployed quickly. • The newest microsites load quickly, are SEO friendly, and can be built quickly and inexpensively. • Helps leverage your social media marketing, extending your reach and building awareness organically. •Might cause confusion if consumers see the campaign and don’t make a note of the specific microsite URL. •A poorly designed microsite can actually reduce conversions. •In order for a microsite to remain effective, it requires long-term maintenance.
Don’t forget about mobile! •Creating content that is effective on a mobile device is a necessary way to increase your chances of reaching your target market. •By providing content that is represented properly on the various devices and platforms that individuals have access to, the better your chances of reaching these potential customers. Creating distinctive content that is suitable for specific devices while sticking with your niche and holding the interest of your customers is the best way to ensure a successful content marketing campaign.
Tell your brand’s story with content Content isn't just about discussing a product you carry or a service you provide. Rather, it's about using content to communicate who you are as a brand. You can easily tell your story with the content you provide: • • • Write a blog post with a personal touch. Create a video showing how you work. Create a photo stream showing the people behind the brand. By being transparent to your followers, you will likely gain an even greater audience by making known who you are and what you want to accomplish with your business. Keep promoting your content. Don’t be against re-promoting previous content. Re-promoting older content will help bring your audience back to something that they may have forgotten about or missed entirely. Just make sure it’s still relevant to your brand image.
Keys to content marketing success With so many companies turning to content marketing in the future, it might be difficult for your content to be found, even if the content you create is of high quality. So what can you do: •Make sure that your content is unique and the true voice of your brand. •Make sure you know your audience and are speaking directly to their needs. •Use a calendar to keep track of your content to ensure you keep up with your content goals. •Measure all your results to know what is and isn’t working.
There is no better way to be found online then by providing legitimate and original content for both Google and for users. Providing your customers and prospects content, information, research and commentary will allow traffic to find its way to you.
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