You have probably heard about "content marketing", but do you know that 91% of B2B marketers are using it?
If you haven't done online content, you should start today. Even if you are running a small company selling directly to consumers, content creation still has significant values for you business.
Interested? Read on to see what the numbers say and get advice from industry experts.
What is Content Marketing?
There are many definitions but let's start with the basics.
Content marketing means creating content to attract and convert prospects into customers.
If you want to dig deeper, here are two definitions from well-known content marketing sites
Why is content marketing important to your business?
In the four steps of the buying cycle (Awareness, Research, Consideration, and Buy), you can use content to effectively tap into the first two steps. With the rise of ad-blocking features, accessible expert knowledge is becoming the main source to bring in customers.
Besides, content marketing is cost-effective, trackable, and scalable.
"At my own company we’ve used content marketing to grow more than 1,000% over the past year...95% of the success we’ve experienced with content marketing can be traced to a handful of articles I’ve written, adding up to perhaps 20 hours of work." - John Steimle, MWI
You can read more from Forbes.
how to start?
There are different ways to start doing content marketing. You can have a content strategist build a comprehensive strategy for various types of content (blog articles, infographics, books, videos, podcasts...) and distribution channels (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr...). Or you can start now with the first blog post, get to know your audience and work out what sticks. Many small companies started with the latter.
Thinking practically, you want to figure out how much budget you can allocate for content marketing, thus how many more people you can hire.
If you are a one-man business, you often start writing yourself. Set out a couple of hours a week to share your knowledge and experience with your audience. When your business grows bigger, you can hire a blogger to help you create more quality content that converts.
Further along the line, you will need a content creator, who are able to write for various projects and expand your company's digital footprint. Then, there will be the need for a social media manager, and a designer, preferably one with video-making experience.
Type of content
Depending on your in-house staff or the skills of your freelance contractors, you can start creating different types of content. Here is a list of options for you to choose:
- Blog Posts (How-to, List Posts, Thought Leadership, Newsjacks)
- Premium Assets (Ebooks, Whitepapers, Webinars, Templates)
- Visual Content (Infographics, SlideShares, Videos)
Once you have created amazing content, it is equally important to make sure that it gets found by your target audience. The role of social media in distributing content is undeniable, but don't overlook other channels like search engines, emails, and social ads.
Measuring Your Content Marketing
Set a couple of KPIs for your campaign. Remember that one main benefit of content marketing is the ability to track and analyse the results. Google Analytics is a perfect place to start because it is free and easy to get to the basics.