Content marketing is a popular form of marketing today, with brands across all industries starting conversations as ways to connect with their customers. In fact, 20% of marketers are actively investing content marketing as part of their strategy.
Not only does the method cultivate awareness around your brand, it also fosters a deeper connection with current and prospective customers. Content production demonstrates your expertise and credibility to your audience — but only when it’s done right. While it’s a cost-effective marketing tactic, it still requires much of your time and dedication.
If you’re considering content marketing for your business, here are 10 things it can help your business achieve.
1. Establish your relevance and expertise
When you share what you know about a given subject, especially in an organized, entertaining manner, you are essentially telling consumers they can trust you and your insight. Your tone must exude confidence to draw consumers to your brand, convincing them you are an expert in your industry — because you are.
By brainstorming new topic ideas and following a consistent posting schedule, you can become a go-to for information on specific topics. This will persuade customers to trust your products and services because, as you’ve portrayed, you do know best. As you continue to produce quality content, you’ll gain a loyal and growing audience who views you as credible and trustworthy.
2. Raise awareness of your products/services
By writing content based around your products and services, you’re ultimately spreading awareness and identifying a specific gap that you bridge in your industry. For example, say you’re a coffee roaster selling only fresh and organic coffee; you might maintain a blog with posts about the downsides of conventional coffee, and why organic coffee is the healthier choice. Or perhaps you’ll create a video about how you roast your own coffee. These insightful pieces of content will raise awareness of your brand and highlight the importance of its products and services.
3. Increase sales
Good content marketing is like free advertising. Sure, you’ll have to invest your time in the process; but it is an affordable option for businesses of all sorts and sizes.
Because your content drives traffic to your site and helps your consumers make more sound purchasing decisions, it seamlessly increases sales. Your customers will feel more informed and be in the right position to decide whether they need or want a specific product or service you offer. However, they should not feel pressured in any way to do so. When done right, good content marketing will help customers make the subconscious decision to choose your brand.
4. Build trust with consumers
According to research by the Content Marketing Institute, 96 percent of successful content marketers say their audience views their organization as a credible and trusted resource. By creating content specifically for your customers, you are providing insight and solutions without asking for anything in return. Of course, they have the option to then look into your products and services if their needs align with your offerings; but this accessible information is priceless to them.
Additionally, consumers will see you as human rather than just a company looking for money. When you invest in getting to know them better and their needs, they’ll feel more comfortable doing business with you.
5. Help you better target your ideal audience
When producing content for an audience, many content marketers create “buyer personas,” or characters who represent real consumers. The Content Marketing Institute found that 73 percent of those surveyed used or planned to use personas for content marketing purposes at the end of last year.
Your content marketing strategy should involve communicating with your audience, either in the comments section of your blog or even at in-person events. Getting to know your customers on a more personal level is crucial to understanding their wants, needs and habits.
Small businesses especially will benefit from this tactic, as their consumers are typically more niche. When you’re cultivating your content, simply ask yourself what your personas would want to better understand and deliver accordingly.
Content marketing is an affordable and relatively simple option for all business. By injecting your personality and insight into your content, you are building lasting relationships with your consumers and strengthening your brand’s voice.
6. Improve your SEO
The more high-quality content you produce, the better search engine optimization (SEO) you will attain. Good SEO translates to more site visitors and eyes on your content, which translates to more leads and loyal customers.
If you’re consistent and thorough in your content marketing efforts, you’ll become more visible online, reaching a larger audience than before. Search engines like Google will recognize your website/blog and rank it higher on its results list — especially if you adhere to SEO best practices, like proper keyword usage and quick loading speed.
7. Impact consumers’ buying decisions
Many of today’s consumers research brands before investing in them. They want to know they can trust the businesses they purchase from, and they often turn to company blogs, websites, and social media profiles to conduct said research.
Having a business blog with relevant, quality content will tell your audience that you are trustworthy and credible, creating and reinforcing a positive reputation for your brand. If you are consistent with your brand’s voice and messaging, you can even become a touchpoint for consumers who have questions or concerns. In turn, they’ll feel more confident in your brand and comfortable doing business with you.
8. Retain current and attract new customers
Attracting new customers is great, but you don’t want to forget your current customers. By focusing your content on what your customers want from you — questions they may have, concerns that need addressing, announcements they’ll want to hear — you’ll prove that you value them and their commitment to your business.
Through content marketing, you can both retain and attract new customers by creating a positive experience for everyone. Existing customers will feel compelled to come back for more quality posts while new customers will be drawn in by your expertise.
9. Gain traction on social media
Social media is a powerful marketing tool, and producing quality content can help you better engage your followers. Share your blog on your company’s Facebook page, repurpose your content in Instagram posts, provide links to your social pages on your website (and vice versa), etc., and you’ll gain more traction on social media. By merging these two marketing channels, you can reach an even larger audience and earn an even better reputation.
10. Generate leads
Leads are what lead to sales — and, eventually, loyal customers. Producing valuable content on a regular basis will attract more visitors to your website and make them more interested in buying from you. This is especially true if you include a call-to-action (CTA) in your content that encourages readers to visit your landing page.
As these leads increase, so do your sales and your repeat customers. By simply engaging your audience via insightful (and free) content, you’ll draw more buyers to your products and/or services.