Content marketing is a vital aspect of any business's online presence. It is the process of creating and distributing valuable content to attract and engage a clearly defined target audience.
By providing useful information and resources, businesses can establish themselves as thought leaders in their industry and build trust with their target audience, all while driving leads and increasing sales.
But where do you start? Here, we'll cover the key steps for kicking off your content marketing efforts and turning leads into sales.
What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing is the process of creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and engage a clearly defined target audience.
The goal of content marketing is to drive profitable customer action by building trust and authority with your target audience. This can be achieved through a variety of content formats such as blog posts, videos, infographics, social media posts and more.
Content Marketing Statistics
- According to the Content Marketing Institute, 91% of B2B marketers use content marketing.
- Hubspot found that 53% of marketers say blog content is their top marketing priority.
- The Content Marketing Institute also found that businesses that consistently use content marketing generate 3x as many leads as those that don't.
Why Invest in Content Marketing
All well and good, but if there's one unifying message when it comes to writing is that creating content takes time. Lots of time. Just sitting down and writing a blog post can take an experienced writer 5-10 hours including research, optimization and everything else that goes into the process. That time = money, whether you're doing the work yourself or paying an outside writer or agency to do the heavy lifing. How can you be sure that expense is worth it?
- Builds Trust: By providing valuable and informative content, businesses can establish themselves as thought leaders in their industry and build trust with their target audience.
- Increases Brand Awareness: Consistently creating and distributing content allows businesses to increase their visibility and reach a wider audience.
- Generates Leads: By providing useful information and resources, businesses can attract potential customers and generate leads.
- Improves SEO: Regularly publishing high-quality content can improve a website's search engine rankings, making it more visible to potential customers.
Building a Content Marketing Strategy
When building a content marketing strategy, it's important to start by defining your target audience and identifying their pain points and needs. This will help you create content that is tailored to their interests and addresses their specific issues.
Next, you'll want to set clear goals for your content marketing efforts. This could include increasing website traffic, generating leads, or improving search engine rankings.
Once you've defined your target audience and set clear goals, you can start developing your content calendar. This will help you plan and organize your content creation efforts, and ensure that you're consistently publishing high-quality content.
Choosing the Right Type of Content
When it comes to choosing the right type of content for your business, there are many options to choose from. Some popular types of content include:
- Blog Posts: Informative and engaging blog posts can help establish your business as a thought leader in your industry and drive traffic to your website.
- Videos: Videos are an engaging and highly shareable type of content, and can be used to showcase products, demos, and more.
- Infographics: Infographics are an easy-to-digest type of content that can be used to convey complex information in a visually appealing way.
- Social Media Posts: Social media is a great way to engage with your target audience, and can be used to share updates, promotions, and more.
Turning Leads into Sales
One of the most important aspects of content marketing is lead generation. By providing valuable information to your target audience, you can attract potential customers and build relationships with them.
Once you've attracted potential customers with your content marketing efforts, it's important to have a clear plan in place for turning those leads into sales. This can be done through a variety of methods such as email marketing, lead magnets, and landing pages.
- Use calls-to-action: Include clear and specific calls-to-action (CTAs) throughout your content. This could be something as simple as asking the reader to sign up for your newsletter or download a free resource.
- Create a lead magnet: A lead magnet is a valuable piece of content that is offered in exchange for contact information, such as an email address. This can be a whitepaper, e-book, or webinar.
- Consider email marketing: An email campaign is a great way to stay in touch with your leads and nurture them over time. By providing valuable information and resources, you can build trust and authority with your leads, and increase the chances of them becoming customers.
- Nurture your leads: Once you have collected contact information, it's important to continue to provide value and nurture the relationship. Use email marketing to send personalized content and offers to your leads.
How to Write High-Ranking Content
One of the biggest challenges of content marketing is creating content that will rank well in search engines. Here are a few tips for writing high-ranking content:
- Conduct keyword research: Use keyword research tools to identify the keywords that your target audience is searching for. Incorporate these keywords into your content, but be sure to use them naturally and avoid keyword stuffing.
- Optimize for on-page SEO: In addition to keywords, there are several on-page elements that can impact your search engine rankings. This includes title tags, meta descriptions, and header tags.
- Create high-quality content: At the end of the day, search engines want to provide their users with the best possible results. This means that high-quality content that is informative, engaging and well-written will rank better than low-quality content.
Content Marketing Mistakes to Avoid
While there are many things you can do to create a successful content marketing strategy, there are also several mistakes that can hold you back. Here are a few to watch out for:
- Not having a clear strategy: Without a clear plan in place, it can be easy to create content that doesn't align with your business goals. Make sure you have a clear strategy in place before you start creating content.
- Focusing too much on SEO: While SEO is important, it shouldn't be the sole focus of your content marketing efforts. Instead, create content that is valuable and informative for your target audience.
- Ignoring analytics: Analytics can provide valuable insights into how your content is performing. Make sure you are tracking metrics such as website traffic, engagement, and conversions.
When to Hire a Content Marketing Agency
While it is possible to handle your content marketing in-house, there are certain situations where it may make more sense to hire a content marketing agency. Maybe you don't have the resources. Content marketing requires a significant investment of time and resources. If your business is already stretched thin, it may make more sense to outsource this work to an agency. Or many you need specialized expertise. A content marketing agency can bring a level of expertise and experience.
Sound like you? Contact us today to learn how we can help.