What Is Content Marketing?

Content marketing is the ultimate form of advertising in today’s consumer-focused world. Learn what it is and how it can help your business thrive.

Today’s consumers are smarter and savvier than ever. They know what they want, and they know where to get it. And with millions of competitors investing in quality marketing and advertising tactics, it can be difficult to set your brand apart from others.

Often, business owners think that intrusive marketing tactics, like commercials or pop-up ads, work best. However, your potential customers don’t want to be bombarded with details about your products or services. They do, on the other hand, want information that would benefit them in some way — information they choose to consume. That’s where content marketing comes into play.

What is content marketing and why does it matter?

Content marketing is the ultimate form of advertising in today’s consumer-focused world. Rather than throwing products at potential customers, you’re offering them valuable information while gaining their trust and, in turn, their business.

You can create relevant content while still marketing your products and services. For instance, if you’re a wellness company selling natural alternatives to modern medications, you can craft a blog or social media post about coping with specific symptoms and which harmful ingredients to avoid in treatments. Then, at the end of your piece, you can include information about your products and link to them.

This tells your audience that you truly care about their health, and you aren’t expecting anything from them in return. Your products are there if they need them, but they can still access your wealth of insight without investing money in your business. That’s how you want your content marketing strategy to come across.

How can content marketing improve your business?

There are many reasons why content marketing is superior to other marketing strategies today:

1. It builds an engaged audience.

If you provide credible information that interests your reader, consumers will come back for more. Their engagement will often lead to a commitment to your brand.

2. It generates potential leads and new customers.

The more traffic you drive to your site, the more consumers you will attract in the process. Readers might share your blog posts on social media or send it to their networks via email, which means you’ll reach a broad audience with potential leads and customers.

3. It’s more affordable than traditional marketing.

Content marketing is as simple as crafting a blog post and sharing it on your site, sending an email, or posting to social media. It takes little more than your time and creativity, and if you’re relying on organic traffic (as opposed to paid or boosted posts), it’s 100% free to do.

4. It gives you an opportunity to re-engage your existing customers.

With this form of marketing, you’re not neglecting existing customers to attract new ones. Your content, so long as you are choosing new topics and listening to readers’ feedback, is valuable to all consumers — both old and new.

5. It’s a potential revenue source.

Blog posts and social media are great ways to promote your products while building a loyal customer base. It’s likely some of your audience will be interested in your products after reading your work.

The secret to content marketing: add value

According to Forbes, the No. 1 secret of content marketing is to add value to the reader. In order to do so, you have to understand what your audience wants. Don’t be afraid to ask them.

Additionally, consider the industry in which your business exists. What are some common topics or issues involved in your field? For instance, if you’re a health food company in the organic foods industry, you can cover the risks of eating non-organic foods, where to purchase cheap organic produce, etc. That information is valuable to your target audience.

Every business can benefit from content marketing. If you want to experiment with a free marketing strategy that strays from traditional, give content marketing a shot — what do you have to lose?

Lightning Media Partners specializes in content marketing, including blog management and copywriting. Visit our services page to learn more about our marketing packages, or contact us to find out how we can kickstart your content marketing efforts.

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Sammi Caramela

Sammi Caramela

Sammi Caramela is our Content Manager whose love for words has propelled her into a career of freelance writing. When she isn’t working for her various clients, she’s writing (and furiously editing) her first novel, reading a YA book with a third cup of coffee, or attending local pop-punk concerts. Check out her blog at sammisays.org.