Content marketing is some of the most valuable marketing that you can create to build and scale your customer base, especially during this shift in consumer behaviour during the pandemic. With in-person marketing switching tactics, marketing budgets are changing, and content marketing has proven it’s here to stay. You’re providing your consumers and audience with value and useful information that will keep them coming back for more. Then, when it comes to making purchasing decisions, you are already top of mind. You keep them engaged without pushing your products, and they feel like a valued member of the community you are creating.
This type of marketing is not new, but the way you approach it in 2021 might need some refreshing. The online space has only become more competitive, and that requires a lot more attention to detail and finessing of your content marketing strategy in order to stay on top.
The last thing you want to do is find yourself stuck on the content treadmill, where you are pushing out content each week but not seeing any results. If you focus on just pushing out as much as you can, you’ll soon feel drained and uninspired, and so will your readers.
Instead, focus on what matters most to you. Chances are, your readers are thinking the same thing. Then, structure and package your content in innovative ways to give what you’re sharing a big upgrade. More and more experiences are happening online, so take the time and effort to stand out. Need some inspiration? Check out these examples.
The average B2B buyer consumes five pieces of content on average before they even talk to a sales rep and 17 pieces of content over the course of the sales lifecycle (Contently). Buyers are more informed than ever, and have the time to find brands and products that speak more to them. If you know that 79& of those buyers report that content is extremely influential in their decision to buy, then you know that content is a vital part of your sales process.
According to 60secondmarketer, blogs and infographics can often be the main and most cost-effective option when it comes to marketing at the top of the funnel. If you have an inhouse writer or feel confident in your abilities, it can be as easy and setting time aside each week on content creation. (If you want to learn about different types of content you can read up on them here.) The key is to focus on quality over quantity, and answering the vital questions your audience is asking. Provide unique insight and give them key takeaways.
Start with a Strong Structure
No one wants to read a keyword stuffed article with a long-winded answer. Start with the answer first then group and summarize your supporting arguments from there. Don’t bury your but information in expansive text. Your content doesn’t need to be long to be useful and informative. Offer value to your audience immediately without making them jump through hoops.
The use of a good structure doesn’t end with your articles, it can be applied to your website and page layouts as well. Cluster your content by topic and/or content type to make finding information a breeze. This way users can easily find information that is relevant for them because your content is structured by content and needs.
A picture is worth a thousand words, right? So why not leverage that to create engaging content. Adding the right images to your marketing assets and downloadable content is proven to get you more sales.
Pages of text can be daunting, and though you can get your point across with words, there’s a better way to do so. A wall of words can give even the most motivated client reading fatigue. Instead, break those paragraphs up with images that portray the positive messaging you are trying to get across. Images are processed in the brain remarkably fast, and the memory of those images are retained at a far higher rate and for a longer period of time than words. By showing the benefit your product provides through imaging, you can get at your reader’s emotions and create a longer lasting impact than with words alone.
Repurpose Content You’ve Already Created
It’s time to work smarter not harder when it comes to content. Be creative when it comes to using what you already have. Created a killer ebook for download on your website? Share it on social – but don’t tell people you made it then stop there. Use those platforms to summarize your long form content into short, digestible tidbits that entice people to download for more. Make a cool stat or word or advice into a tweet. Create an instagram carousel of your how-to guide. Go to where your audience spends the most time and provide value for them there without having to start from scratch.
Need some more ideas? Check out 6 Ways to Repurpose Content for Instagram.
Foster Engagement, Don’t Force It
We get it, you can grow your email list and build a sales channel through your email list, but that doesn’t mean you should be gating all your useful content. If you force your user to fill out a form every time they want information, you’ll see your pages and downloads get a lot less traffic. There’s a way to both increase engagement and capture leads, but it’s a balance of give and ask.
Instead of forcing users to fill out a form to gain access to a template or guide right when then enter a page, intice them by first providing value. Show how they can be used, why they are helpful, and provide context of the pain points your content helps to fix. Not only will they be more interested in getting what you have to offer, they will feel like you are really providing them value. This type of content experience can be done for a variety of things such as calendars, planners, guides, ebooks, and coupons. The user receives the content they want, you get the email to grow your engagement, and you both come out feeling like winners.
This type of engagement is most effective at the bottom of your sales funnel, with an audience that is most likely to purchase. They’ve interacted with your brand before, and find you emails and content useful rather than annoying when they see it in your inbox. They should be the people who have a positive view of your brand already, and liked something enough to provide their details to engage with your brand again. Don’t abuse that by sending out whatever you can, whenever you can. Focus on building trust by providing content that is both educating and engaging.
Content is Here to Stay
Content marketing is not a new tactic, but that doesn’t mean it’s old news. The importance of building connections will only continue to grow as we navigate new challenges born out of the COVID-19 pandemic. Take the time more to find out when your audience seeks most from you, and invest your time and resources into providing that.
Still looking for more? Here are 4 Tips for Creating Better Content