Heard that Content Marketing as being the ‘next big thing’ for marketing this year? Well, it’s true. It actually is.
I want to help you get in on this next big thing. So here are 7 step by step ways to get it happening for you.
So what is Content Marketing anyway?
Well, in the words of Seth Godin, Content Marketing is ‘the only marketing left’.
It’s the opportunity to speak directly, to have conversations, to create dialogue with your actual target market, YOUR customers.
That’s well and good, but how does that help you? What does it mean? What should you do? Where do you start? I know that when our agency started working with content marketing strategies years ago, it was overwhelming:
- What do people want to know?
- How do I tell them what I want to tell them?
- Will they be interested?
- How do I know they will respond?
- Where does the content come from?
The key is planning, people. And this year, the Year of Content Marketing, the key to success lies in meticulous strategy, creation and distribution.
Let’s make it easy for you – here is an 7 step approach which will help you understand the Content Marketing process, and motivate you to take action.
DOCUMENT YOUR STRATEGY
Content Marketing is a mix of different pieces of information – native advertising, branded posts, blogs, organic content – that’s one thing. And collating it can be like herding cats. If you don’t control and document those felines, it’s going to look like a dog’s breakfast at the user end. Excuse all the pet puns…..
By documenting and planning, you can control the look, the response, the way people engage, and learn from it.
BE DEDICATED, AND COMMIT
Successful content marketers commit to their Content Marketing activity. Consistently. Without fail. Are you getting the message?
Discipline is the answer to the Content Marketing question, so if you feel that you don’t have the mettle, the backbone, the vision to see it through, that’s ok, it’s not for you.
KNOW WHO YOU ARE TALKING TO
Tone of voice, the way you speak, the language you use – all of these things will dictate how your audience responds. So you need to know EXACTLY who they are. You need to know what sort of nuances are relevant to them, what their pain points are, where they are looking for a better life, what sort of information will be helpful, useful, interesting to them.
The pain points won’t be a long list – repeat them in different ways in the various ways of content, just to hammer it home.
BE CLEAR ABOUT YOUR BRAND STORY
We all have one. A story. For example, ours is about having a very strong background in branding and marketing, before becoming specialists in the Social Media space – and this sets us apart from a lot of other agencies. So we repeat it. We cement it. We refer to it in little asides, and make sure that our target audience (business owners, marketing managers, CEO’s) know our story for when they are ready to do business with an experienced agency who not only understands traditional marketing VERY well, but how to swing in the Social Media / Digital space with agility as well.
So work out your brand story, and repeat it over, and over and over.
SYSTEMISE AND AUTOMATE
65% of successful Content Marketers last year used content marketing systems, softwares, and automations.
Content may be king, but boy, is it time-consuming! And the successful Content Marketers know it.
So use scheduling platforms, reuse and recycle content where you can, do live videos and have them transcripted, then broken into various smaller chunks of copy.
BE ABSOLUTELY, 100%, COMPLETELY, AUTHENTICALLY YOU
We are now a savvy lot.
We can see straight through cheesy try-hards, staged or overscripted videos, subliminal selling.
To succeed in this space, you have to give. Without asking for anything back. Helpful, education, informative – offering value at every point.
Be you. Be authentic. Be genuine.
It’s important – 73% of consumers would pay more for a product offered by a company who is open and transparent, simply because they trust them more.
DISTRIBUTE EVENLY AND LEARN
On which platform will you send out your content?
The answer is, you don’t know until you start.
Will Facebook be the key (generally speaking, it’s the starting point, just sayin’)? Or does LinkedIn get a better rate of engagement? Instagram? Pinterest? Traditional print media?
Start distributing on as many channels as you can, and learn from the results. Your audience will tell you where they play. The numbers will tell you exactly where they are best engaging. And then, you can amplify the content on those distribution channels.