Placing the Customer at the Centre of Your Marketing
What is content marketing? It’s a powerful strategy that has revolutionised the way businesses connect with their target audiences. For the online shopper, inundated with information, content marketing stands out as a beacon of value-driven communication. It involves creating and distributing relevant, original, and consistent content to attract, engage, and retain a specific audience.
Content marketing provides educational, entertaining, or informative content. It acts as the calling card for businesses to build trust, establish thought leadership, and nurture long-lasting relationships with customers. If you’re wondering ‘What is content marketing?’ or ‘How does it work?’ let the Outsource Your Marketing team guide you through it.
What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing uses copy, imagery, video, and audio to engage with a target audience, utilising online platforms such as websites, social media, and paid ads. What’s new about this type of marketing is that it’s value driven. Rather than throwing tacky ads at customers, content marketing provides them with useful, thoughtful, funny items that will engage them whatever stage of the customer journey they’re at.
Typical examples of content marketing are case studies, business stories, how-to guides, informative blogs, all of which are carefully designed to engage and provide benefits for shoppers.
Why Does Content Marketing Matter?
Browsing online is like being in an extremely noisy room; content marketing is all about regaining some focus and attention, rather than adding more distraction. Get it right and your target audience will feel grateful that they come across your content. Here are the key reasons why content marketing matters to businesses:
- Let People Know About Your Product/Services. Content marketing means businesses promote themselves whilst, at the same time, offering tangible value to an interested audience.
- Increased Conversions. Content marketing is customer-centric, brands show that they care about and understand customer needs. And that translates into higher conversion rates.
- Make a Connection With Customers. It takes time to get to know your product or service. Content marketing allows customers to go at their own pace, which builds a trusting relationship.
- Content That Acknowledges Pain Points. A successful content marketing strategy tailors content to each of the pain points your customers experience. Show how your product or service solves the problem.
- Increased Visibility. Each piece of high-quality content you create enhances your visibility, adds to your trustworthiness, and reaches more people. You gain both reputation and conversions.
- Create Loyal Customers. If you share high-quality content with customers, they come to trust you as a reliable source of information. That’s a great foundation for building customer loyalty.
How Does Content Marketing Work?
Marketing breaks down the purchasing process into 3 phases: awareness, consideration, and decision. Content marketing works strategically to address each of these stages in its output.
- Awareness. Customers are aware of a problem they want to deal with. Content marketing focuses on customer needs and pain points without overtly promoting products. Blogs answering broad questions, how-to videos, and fact sheets are effective for creating awareness.
- Consideration. The audience begins looking for solutions to their problem. Content marketing continues to deliver value-driven output, but this can include carefully contextualised promotions. Helpful infographics and how-to blogs are ideal for this stage.
- Decision. The customer decides where to buy. Content marketing emphasises sales-related content, such as comparison lists, customer testimonials, product demo videos, and buyer guides.
Aligning content with each stage, allows businesses to guide customers through their journey in a process of building trust, providing value, and ultimately driving conversions.
Types of Content Marketing
The choice you make about the type of content marketing you use will be based on who you’re trying to connect with, what stage they’re at in the customer journey, and the business goal being pursued. There’s a huge range to choose from, across a variety of online platforms. We’re profiling just 5 that get used most regularly:
Blogs are endlessly versatile, and they’re used by businesses to promote products, share news, discuss industry trends, and showcase expertise. They’re usually published on a company’s own website. Blogs that incorporate custom images and videos make for better reader engagement.
Blog posts are highly effective in content marketing because they’re attractive to readers and useful for search engines. Blogging is cost-effective, SEO-friendly, and offers a simple way to generate content. To maximise the benefits, businesses should focus on a single topic per article and offer valuable content with a mix of short, medium, and long-form posts. Using headers, bullets, and bolded text helps maintain reader interest.
Social media marketing is all about creating and sharing customer-centric content on relevant social platforms. Businesses combine text, images, and videos to engage audiences on platforms like Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, Pinterest, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Twitter.
Social media enables businesses to interact and connect with customers directly in order to build engagement and trust. By sharing updates and entertaining content, businesses can encourage followers to share their posts, potentially leading to viral reach.
Most content marketing is organic, which means that you don’t pay to publish it. Paid advertising content, by contrast, involves promoting your business through paid channels like Google, or Facebook, using text, images, and videos.
Video content allows brands to craft compelling narratives while also incorporating product promotion. By framing communication in the form of a story, brands can establish an emotional bond that greatly impacts customer retention. Through storytelling, brands can seamlessly merge their messages with engaging and informative content, increasing the likelihood of viewers willingly investing their valuable time to watch.
This approach not only engages audiences but also enhances the chances of conveying brand values effectively, leaving a lasting impression on the target audience. It’s easy to share online and doubles up as part of a blog or social media post.
These take dry, unappealing stats, and facts, and transform them into an eye-catching design. Infographics are particularly useful in B2B marketing because they take complex ideas and turn them into visuals that are easy to read and to share. In an era where audiences are looking for content that can be skimmed, infographics enable faster consumption of a brand’s message.
Ready to Start Creating Content?
Outsource Your Marketing is a UK-based network of marketing professionals providing comprehensive outsourced services to businesses. From crafting and implementing content marketing strategies to handling smaller tasks, such as blog writing, keyword research, SEO-driven content creation, and ongoing SEO marketing, we’ve got you covered.
The OYM team takes care of both the big-picture elements and the smaller details that you may not have time for, ensuring that your marketing needs are met efficiently and effectively. Trust us to deliver top-quality marketing support tailored to your specific requirements.