Content Marketing - If you have great content, market it!
Why do businesses not aggressively market their content? You can publish, and it may organically find consumers, but you need to PUSH it out! It's a journey...
Why do some businesses not aggressively market their content? You can publish, and it may organically find consumers, but you need to PUSH it out! It's a journey, not a destination.
Some businesses, especially small businesses, perhaps wrongly assume that when the publish digital content, whether it be a blog post, a book, a podcast, a video, etc, that it will magically find a huge audience. Or they incorrectly start up a blog, publish their first post and expect the phone to ring or emails to fill up their inbox. Now, many digital assets *do* find large audiences through word of mouth, but many times we need to do all we can to get eyeballs on our content.
Firstly, a definition - What is content marketing, and why do I need it?
Dictionary con·tent mar·ket·ing
a type of marketing that involves the creation and sharing of online material (such as videos, blogs, and social media posts) that does not explicitly promote a brand but is intended to stimulate interest in its products or services.
"social media is an integral part of content marketing"
Definitions from Oxford Languages
So, you've been doing this, correct?
If you've BEEN doing this and seeing less than stellar results, here are a few suggestions on how to figure out what is not working, and how to improve.
Do you have a content marketing plan?
We all know what a plan is, don't we? A list of steps, mostly defined by time and resources to accomplish a goal. We plan for many things in our business, but content marketing is sometimes an afterthought. "Oh, we'll get Kevin in accounting to create some blog posts, and then post them to our social channels, as he has time on his hands!" Is Kevin the right person with the right skill set to do this? Likely not, but I'm not here to judge.
Kevin from accounting
A good content marketing wants to do big things and make a splash. They are also organized, have a good command of the language (spelling and grammar) and are natural storytellers, can understand the products and services they provide from a customer viewpoint, analytical enough to determine if what they are doing is successful, and so much more.
That being said, many small businesses bootstrap things and have to make do with what they have. You're UP Kevin!
No matter who is doing your content, whether it's someone in house, or an external person, the keys to success are:
- Creating a marketing plan - who will create content; what type of content will they create; where will they create content; how often will they create content; how long they will create content for (forever); how will they measure success. Will you be creating a podcast? Doing a weekly blog? Hosting virtual seminars or get togethers? Tweeting, Instagramming, Facebooking? All of them?
- Create content for every way a customer interacts with your business - initial sale (expectations), customer service, after sales service, next purchases, etc.
- SEO all your content. That means both short and long tail keywords (ways people search for you), industry phrases, tags, categories, pictures in posts, etc.
- Be consistent: Determine your schedule as part of your content marketing plan and stick with it. Nothing will impact your organic SEO more than regular, well written, SEO'd content!
- Give it time: Buying airtime on a local radio station may give you a temporary bump in customers, the key is long term content. This will give people year's worth of content to consume, but also impact your organic SEO.
- Content that isn't well written, or is well written but for the wrong market. It's like a book - who do you want to read it, and what is the tone of the book. You need to write your content directed at the people that need it. If you are a wheelbarrow company, I would assume anyone looking to buy a wheelbarrow doesn't have a lot of time to read long posts about the benefits of your product. Keep it short, concise and make the benefits STAND OUT. If you are a gardener, your customers would appreciate beautiful pictures of your success stories, and matching text to highlight the pictures.
- Lastly, don't forget a call to action at the end of your content - what do you want them to do next? Call or email for an appointment, refer a friend, sign up for your email list? Be clear and ask for the next step in your relationship!
I need help with content creation!
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