Why Content Marketing is The Hot New Trend

content marketing“Content marketing is more than a buzzword. It is the hottest new trend in marketing because it is the biggest gap between what buyers want and brands produce.” – Michael Brenner

This is one of my favourite inspirational marketing quotes.

My idol, Jeff Bullas, says 86% of marketers plan to spend more on their content for 2015. “The good news is that we know how important content is which is why we’re concentrating more of our efforts – and money – on using it… The future takeaway here is to create content for the sales funnel, make it relevant to your audience, and keep measuring your ROI so you can continue to improve your strategy!”

Mad keen and passionate about content marketing. Why?

‘Content marketing’ is an important recent addition to the marketing department. In our ever-changing digital world, small business owners and entrepreneurs who want to reach their target market online to grow brand recognition and sales revenue must be able to do more content marketing.

What is content marketing?

It’s a strategic approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience and ultimately, to drive profitable customer action, so says The Content Marketing Institute.

The first goal of content marketing is growing brand awareness, as well as lead generation, user engagement and of course, sales and lead nurturing (says this cool infographic). This is true whether you are marketing to other businesses (B2B) or directly to consumers (B2C).

What about content creation?

It’s the crafting of the material people contribute to the online world. For marketers, this means creating information for a target audience in specific contexts for digital media. I like to group content this way:

  1. Visual Content – Blog posts, infographics, newsletters, articles, reports, eBooks, e-zines (online magazines), photos and memes. 93 percent of the most engaging Facebook posts feature an image or a photo and just 2 percent are to links or videos, according to recent research.
  2. Audio-Visual Content – Videos and webinars. Videos are increasingly important for blogs and social media posts. They’re great because they allow people to experience your brand and connect with you in a way that’s not possible with just text and photos. Webinars (online seminars) are also quickly growing in popularity for their ability to reach a wider audience in real time without having to turn up at a physical location. They can be a really useful way to grow your audience and convert your prospects into loyal customers.
  3. Audio Content – Podcasts, downloadable audio files and teleseminars. Great for people who want to listen in the car, at their desk, in their bed or while they are multi-tasking.
  4. Interactive Content – Quizzes, contests, games, workbooks, assessment tools and calculators. These are so hot because they let you stand out and engage your audience in a way passive content does not. Interactive content can also help you educate your audience through experiential learning and let you learn more about your audience from the data you collect (source).

My best content creation tips?

Here’s how I suggest you can create consistently contagious and creative content that connects your audience to your brand:

Be Relatable – People can connect with you instantly if you give them something they can easily relate to. For instance, if you’re targeting busy mums and you talk about your struggle with laundry then you quickly have something in common. People warm to you when you share common ground.

Be True To You – Be authentic to create trust so people can feel exactly who YOU are. Be REAL and let people see what you struggle with – it makes you human and people like human. Always tell the truth.

Start With ‘Why’ – Communicating your WHY will attract customers who are inspired by what you stand for and who will loyally support your business. Sarah Schwab does a great job of summarising how you can do this in her blog.

Solve A Problem – You’ve shared what you struggle with and told your WHY about a topic you feel genuinely about. Now offer a solution to solve the struggle and be authentic about it.

Tell Stories – Marketing is storytelling so don’t miss out on using the power of stories in your marketing. When I first learnt this from Seth Godin, I got so excited that I wrote this post. Godin says promoting the features and benefits of your product or service is no longer enough to be a successful marketer. You need to tell remarkable and compelling stories to your audience who wants to believe how your product or service will make them feel.

Use The Word ‘You’… a lot – Why? If you’ve had a chat with someone who only wants to talk about themselves (and I know you have) then you’ll know why you’re more likeable when you focus on the person you’re talking to.

What about measuring results?

You can measure the results of your content marketing by tracking your website traffic, blog and social media engagement, email marketing results, quantity and quality of sales leads and SEO ranking.

What else would you like to know about content marketing?

I’m writing an eBook to help small businesses owners and entrepreneurs like you share your remarkable stories with a larger audience so you can find more raving, loyal fans.

So what would you like to know about content marketing?

Tell me in the comments or contact me to let me know.

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