In the early days of social media, a single tweet could be heard around the world. Sharing content was simple and organic reach was alive. Many brands have already rallied around the idea that content is an effective way to influence customers. But with more channels to share content than ever before – from email platforms like Constant Contact to blogs and a large selection of increasingly popular social media platforms like Periscope and Instagram – how do you chart the right course?
This year, the “content” part of content marketing will take front and center stage for brands that want to be heard.
So how do you create an effective content marketing strategy?
Focus on Quality over Quantity: Good, solid content is like money in the bank for marketers, but if your content is lacking – it may leave your marketing strategy feeling a little bankrupt. Creating quality content that will resonate with target audiences will be critical to securing engagement.
Make use of Engaging Visuals – Especially Video: Researchers found that colored visuals increase people's willingness to read a piece of content by 80 percent. In a recent article from Fast Company, 70 percent of companies now say video is the most effective tool in their online marketing belts.
Publish Content Regularly: Producing compelling and useful content on a regular basis will not only help with search engine rankings, but will establish your brand as a go-to resource for information. Fresh content is key to being a trusted voice in your industry.
Find the Right Content Mix: There has been a shift in the marketing world. With so many brands vying for attention, you need to find the right content mix: owned content (i.e. your brand’s website, blog or social channels), paid (i.e. partnering with media outlets to create and amplify sponsored content), and earned (i.e. a product review with CNET or a feature story in the Wall Street Journal).
Slice & Dice your Content for the Right Channels: Determine the right medium to share your content. For instance, a new product has broad appeal and is suited for multiple channels of delivery, such as packaging as a press release and issuing over the wire. The same news can be posted in your blog, on your Facebook wall, tweeted about, explained in a video, etc. A media story on the same new product can be great content for sharing on your website and social platforms. Perhaps your customer is media shy and doesn't feel comfortable being spotlighted in a press release – but is more than happy to have their story shared on your blog or within a case study. Match the content to the medium, and you'll have a well-rounded content marketing program.
Our Five-Step Model for an Effective Content Marketing Strategy:
Overall, content marketing makes sense. With a good, thoughtful strategy in place that delivers meaningful content, you're well on your way to that next sale – and to establishing a trusting relationship.