Remember the last job interview you went on? Like many of us you were probably a little bit nervous, and eager to impress the person who was interviewing you. You probably rehearsed what you were going to say, picked out the perfect clothes, and styled your hair just right so that you could make a good impression. You went to every length you could think of to make sure everybody you met through the course of your interview had a positive image of you.
Your company’s online presence is like one long interview that started when you first launched your website. But instead of being interviewed by a future employer, your company and your brand are being critiqued by your customers—both future and current.
Shopping is 24/7
Now that the Internet has officially taken over our lives, we’re all constantly comparing brands and products, whether we realize it or not. Think of how many times you’ve stumbled upon an item online and immediately knew you were going to buy it. One minute, you were visiting your favorite blog or catching up with old friends on Facebook, and the next, you’ve found this great new kitchen device that you just can’t live without. Whether you discovered the gadget through a display ad, a blog post, or your friend recommended it, once you found it, you knew you needed it in your life. You may have even ordered the item right then and there.
We may not always like to admit it, but this non-stop shopping is becoming the new norm. People are constantly being marketed to, and with technology allowing us to be “connected” at all times, our buying power is at its strongest ever.
There is never a time when we’re not weighing one brand against another.
That being said, I can’t emphasize enough the importance of having a well-rounded marketing strategy. Content marketing should always be a part of that strategy.
Content Marketing In A Nutshell
By now, there’s no doubt that you’ve heard of content marketing, and hopefully, it’s something you’ve at least tried out, if you’re not actively using it right now.
Content marketing is exactly what it sounds like: creating branded content to market, or advertise, a company’s products or services in the digital space. A content marketing campaign typically includes blog posts and articles, and may even extend to video content as well. The important thing to remember about content marketing is that the content itself doesn’t feel like an advertisement, and that’s exactly why content marketing, when done correctly, can be extremely effective.
An Shameless Plug In Sheep’s Clothing
As I mentioned, content marketing doesn’t come across like an advertisement; this is actually what makes content marketing so effective. Think about the last time you looked up a recipe and one of the ingredients specified which brand to use. While the brand may not have necessarily paid for that placement, this is an example of how content marketing works.
Content marketing puts your brand into context. Rather than your brand itself being the focus of the piece of content (article, video, etc.), the focus becomes the benefit your brand offers to the customer.
If you think of a typical ad as a pushy car salesman trying to talk you into buying the newest model, content marketing is the review of the model that’s published in your local paper.
Benefits of Content Marketing
A successful content marketing campaign increases, or even maximizes, your brand’s online presence. As you continue to create and publish branded content, it becomes easier for your desired audience to find your brand—whether they meant to or not.
When content marketing is done correctly, it not only increases brand awareness, but it accomplishes the ultimate goal of all advertising, by enabling your brand to be top-of-mind among your target market—without the use of pesky, pushy ads.
What It All Means For You
At this point, I’d like you to stop and think about your own digital marketing efforts. Ask yourself how much time and capital you’re spending on your own campaigns. What types of campaigns are you running, and what are your goals for each of these? Are you meeting your goals, or having to lower your expectations?
Is content marketing a part of your marketing strategy, and, if so, are you regularly pushing out new, original, branded content?
Content marketing can be easily overlooked; it’s one of the few types of advertising that goes beyond simply spending money to get fast results. A well-executed content marketing campaign could have a significant impact on your business.
If you’re looking for help with your own content marketing strategy, whether you’re just getting started or looking to expand on your existing efforts, I’m here to help! Contact me today for assistance with developing your own content strategy and creating your next successful campaign.