Marketing is an essential tool that helps a company achieve its business goals. Content marketing, in particular, is a form of strategic marketing that has skyrocketed in growth over the last few years. Content marketing builds a web presence for the promotion of products and services and puts brands in the spotlight. This is why a staggering 86 percent of B2C and 91 percent of B2B companies use content marketing to reach out to their prospective and current customers on the web.
What is content marketing?
The umbrella term "content marketing" encompasses all types of marketing that involve the development, exposure, and promotion of content created to invite and acquire current and prospective consumer bases. The objective of content marketing is to drive customer action, boosting website traffic for an increase in conversions. Here are five of the most valuable content marketing tips that can lead your business to success:
1. Invest your time
Websites are a big influence on whether or not a customer decides to make a purchase from your business. In other words, your business website needs to be good. Take the time to update your website regularly, and make sure it is rich in high-quality content. Think about it from your customer’s point of view. Would you want to do business with a company that features website blogs from several years ago, but nothing current? Your customers won’t either.
2. Keep your ears open
Content marketing is a two-way road. Listen to what your customers and competitors have to say, and do something about their feedback. Use the information and comments to shape and change the messages you deliver. Read tweets, pay attention to LinkedIn, and review the comments made on your Facebook page. Unfortunately, negative comments and reviews are unavoidable. If you are faced with a situation where you must respond to a negative review, make sure to never respond in an angry manner. Just as you would if you were dealing with a dissatisfied customer face-to-face, stay composed and polite as you respond. This will give off the best impression of your business and you, as a businessperson.
3. Think outside of the box
There are a bevy of options when it comes to formatting content. The most obvious is a blog. Blogs provide a discussion about a particular subject, or on behalf of an individual or business. To give a personalized feeling to your business, use videos. Videos are a powerful tool that make your website dynamic and engage your visitors. Lists also help attract positive online attention. Think about lists that feature “top 10’s” and write about topics that will appeal to your customers.
4. Devise a plan
Always have a plan in place. Content efforts that are aimless and unfocused tend to give off the same impression to your customers about your business; that you are unorganized and scattered. Decide on the message you want to convey, create a strategy, and do not waver from it. A well-built strategy shows your audience you are an efficient businessperson. If you prefer to develop and publish your own content, content management systems (CMS) are available for downloading. If you have questions, consult an expert.
5. Tell a story to build trust
Content marketing is more effective when you build relationships with your customers. Use photographs that have a person in them to humanize your business. Whether it is you or another employee, seeing a person in the picture helps your customers trust you, and a customer who trusts you is more likely to make a purchase. The content marketing you use and share should be useful and high in quality. Make sure the content engages customers and convinces them that you are the best in your field of expertise. To boost your business, create content that will leave a lasting impression on your customers. Use a combination of marketing avenues to reach a widespread audience to result in more sales for your business. For ways to earn loyal customers, tell the truth and use customer testimonials.
Megan Totka is the Chief Editor for ChamberofCommerce.com, which helps small businesses grow their business on the web and facilitates connectivity between local businesses and more than 7,000 Chambers of Commerce worldwide. Follow ChamberofCommerce.com on Twitter @ChamberOnline.