We’re all familiar with content marketing and how important it is in today’s digital marketing environment. It’s what most businesses – big or small – now depend on to get their products/services out there. In the saturated world of news, trends, and viral hits, it’s critical to not only be UNIQUE, but to have the AUTHORITY and SINCERITY to get your message across.
I’m sure you already have a form of content marketing strategy in place. What’s even better is if you coupled it with your SEO campaign. However, is it focused?
The Importance of Focused Content for 2016 and Beyond
According to data from Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs, only 5% of B2B marketers say their content marketing tactics are effective. Meanwhile, a good 44% have a neutral stance (either they’re not sure it’s working OR they have no reports to prove it) on the matter. These findings are worrying because it appears many digital marketers are wasting time, money, and effort.
It’s like jumping into a pool without knowing how deep it is. You could end up with a fracture – or worse.
The same could be said for content marketing. As it’s a continuous process of developing, improving, and distributing all types of content, it’s important to understand where all your hard work is going. Is your content good enough to hook your target market? Do you know what people like or hate about the stuff you churn out? What channels do you use for distribution? Is ‘good’ content even enough?
It’s time to step back a little and assess whether your company is on the right track on using content marketing to reach your goals. If you believe your methods are sub-par, here are several suggestions to get you going again.
5 Key Elements to Focused Content Marketing Efforts
The first thing marketers should ask themselves is always WHO is the content for. Remember the adage: ‘trying to please everyone will end up pleasing no one’. Focus your energy to a single market that would benefit the most from your products or services. Be as specific as you can.
For example: instead of aiming for just stay-at-home moms, aim for stay-at-home moms who have children less than a year old. This creates exclusivity and authority. For one, people can feel you specialize on certain subjects. Two, your audience will love the special attention you have put into the tailored content you create.
After you have pointed out exactly who you are marketing to, it’s time to find out WHAT they want to see. This is best done using surveys. You can contact a pro in this field OR use online tools such as Survey Monkey. It also helps to do a little digging by checking most read blogs in your niche.
In a study by Elite Daily, 33% of millennials go to blogs to find out more about certain products BEFORE they buy. Another approach is to analyze trends on social media. Take note of hashtags, community threads, and popular videos. Is your competitor killing it in this department? Don’t forget to learn from them by studying their content.
Next, HOW OFTEN should you produce said content? Some marketers say weekly, others say daily. The right answer is in fact: it depends. If you were able to gain insight on your audience’s online habits, then you’ll know the best days and times to post. In connection with the above principle, the type of content will highly affect when your market should expect them.
For instance: light stuff such as product updates or weekend shout-outs may be posted on a regular basis. This keeps your content and online visibility fresh. However, more comprehensive stuff such as case studies, may be churned out every month or so.
Once you’ve got those details down, DECIDE on the top channels for content distribution. One of the most cost-effective platforms is social media. It’s not surprising that 62% of millennials say they would be loyal to a brand who engages with them on their favorite platforms (like Facebook). Interacting with your audience even BEFORE you promote not only helps you create better content, you get to connect with them on a deeper level.
Last but not least, don’t forget to ALIGN your products and/or services with the content you have. Your first question should always be: how will customers benefit from this? This puts the spotlight on the people you serve, and it will show in the stuff you produce.
Entrepreneur Richard Branson has always believed in excellent customer service. Thanks to his dedication to giving his customers a meaningful experience, he is one of the most successful and inspiring leaders of today.
Think BIG for Tomorrow’s Content Marketing
I highly believe that content marketing in the future can only be more competitive. The challenge for us is thus twofold: to think outside the box AND to push ourselves into unexplored territory. Surely, the methods we are using now won’t be enough. We need to reach out to people, become more transparent, and be more of a friend than a business.
This demand to go further means that simply tying your SEO with content marketing may not be enough. It should be a seamless experience for your user. A true Optimization expert would be able to help you in this endeavor. When it comes to the future of content marketing, remember to choose a digital marketer who has a huge view of tomorrow.
After all, the scope of content is also very big.