What is content marketing? Content marketing is a way to engage the target audience. It allows you to grow your network of leads and customers. It does this through the creation of remarkable and valuable content. This, in turn, attracts, involves, and generates value for people, creating a positive perception of your brand.
But, to clear up concerns, we will explain the concept step by step.
“Content marketing is a way to engage the engagement of your target audience and grow your network of leads and customers …”
First, you need to understand that we are no longer in those times where television channels practically forced commercials on people.
Today, the public has more power to choose the content they want to consume and how to interact with it. You have the power and knowledge to produce exactly the content that your audience wants.
“… through the creation of remarkable and valuable content …”
Many traditional professionals find it difficult to stop talking about their products and focus on what the public wants.
Good content not only sells but also brings some benefit to those who read it. It offers to solve a problem, clarify a question, or teach something. The sale is only one consequence of this process.
“… attracting, involving, and generating value for people …”
The content you create is not only lucrative. You must also properly share the message to the public when they need it most.
“… And creating a positive perception of your brand and thus generating more business. “
If you were there for your audience when they needed it most, they won’t forget it. You will automatically have a positive view of your brand.
And, as is we know, people are more likely to do business with brands they know and empathize with.
What is content marketing for?
With content marketing you can achieve:
- Increase sales.
- Create links with people.
- Solve problems.
- Position searches.
- Communicate values.
The ultimate goal of marketing is: always bring positive results for the company.
With content marketing, you can achieve that goal.
How is content marketing linked to inbound marketing?
In today’s world, inbound marketing has become the main marketing strategy, and content marketing is part of it. However, before we continue with content marketing, we must first get to know inbound marketing.
Inbound marketing also knows as attraction marketing, is a strategy that aims at drawing the attention of people. It does this without invading or interrupting their experience.
So, unlike aggressive advertisements, its goal is to subtly engage the audience. In short, this allows the public to visit your company while respecting their time.
We base inbound marketing on the following four pillars:
- Attract: We can achieve this through unique content. It draws visitors interested in the business.
- Convert: The intention is to transform visitors into leads. For this, it brings them closer to your business and transforms them into potentials clients.
- Sell: Do you have any leads interested in the product or service that your company offers? That is the time to show the best solution and close the sale.
- Enchant: The relationship between your company and your customer does not end with the purchase. Inbound shows a lasting relationship, in which it offers all the necessary support. Besides, it does this with skilled care.
In short, you engage audiences to gain their trust and attract loyal fans for your brand. But there are several other benefits of content marketing for your business. We will explain them below.
Benefits of content marketing
Why use content marketing? Here we will show you the main advantages of the strategy for your company to achieve its business objectives.
According to a report posted on Neil Patel’s blog, 93% of B2B marketers use this method in their customer acquisition strategy. As the figures show, most companies already know the benefits of this method. Here are the reasons for your business:
Increase your site traffic.
In today’s digital world, people use the Internet to search for information, especially in search engines like Google. This is to say, that the site is the gateway for new customers and Google is the medium.
Producing remarkable content is the best way to get your site on the first page of Google. This is where your audience will always find it, and let that door invite them in.
Companies that use content marketing have twice the number of visits to their sites. Of course, if you produce over 13 pieces of content per month, that number increase by four times.
Generate brand awareness.
Content production encourages more people to recognize your brand.
Besides, it invites them to learn about the products and/or services that your company offers.
People acquire brands familiar to them and for which they feel sympathy.
A constant reader of your blog, for example, will choose your brand when they need to buy a product or service.
This is because they know you, and your product or content helped them before.
Increase engagement with your brand.
Brand awareness increases the number of people who know and have a positive awareness of your brand.
Engagement seeks to build a close and constant relationship with a select audience.
By producing quality content, you increase people’s interactions with your brand and thus create real engagement.
Educate the market.
Usually, your target audience does not have a good understanding of the market you are entering, what the products offered by your company are for, and more.
If that’s the case, don’t give up. Rather, produce content that answers customers’ questions. Teach them everything they need to know to make the purchase decision for themselves.
If your content is of good quality, it will highlight the responses and increase customer satisfaction. Why? Because your clients will arrive at the time of purchase knowing your product and how to use it.
Generate sales in the medium term.
You may think: is not generating sales what all companies want? Yes, of course. But that is not always the end goal of the content marketing process.
Increasing the number of sales, in this case, is the same as focusing your content production.
This, will the intention to guide your leads through the entire purchase process and prepare them to decide. In any case, business opportunities arise naturally when companies do a good content strategy and follow good practices.
From the production of rich materials in an editorial calendar, it favors the attraction of the buyer persona to the website. Thus, potential customers will visit your website and before the competition’s website.
Nothing better for a sales team than to reach a potential client first.
Creating content oriented in the terms that your buyer persona is searching on Google, exponentially increases the procreation of qualified leads.
That is the difference in a company that does inbound marketing. Potential clients go to your sales team, preventing you from wasting a lot of time looking for them.
In this way, it is possible to optimize the efficiency and productivity of the sales department. They will be the ones to contact only those clients that are genuine business opportunities. In the same way, the advanced and complete contents are very useful for regular outbound prospecting.
Using email flows, it is possible to educate your prospect about your offering and your company. Also, they invigorate the authority and visibility of the brand. Thus, positioning itself as the main reference on the subject for the potential client.
Boost lead generation
At this point, you already have visitors on your site. But you don’t have information about them. So, as a result, you won’t be able to submit the right content to turn them into leads. Thus, you can’t connect them with a seller.
For that reason, generating leads is the main objective of 64.7% of companies.
Some of them are already getting triple the number of leads doing content marketing.
The best thing to do is to create a solid strategy. This gives you long-term results, generating traffic and leads even if you do not produce content regularly.
Lifetime-value (LTV) is the total value that a customer spends on your company. To help you understand better, we give you the following example:
If your customers buy a $50.00 product twice on average, your LTV is $ 100.00.
Every business owner knows that it is cheaper to sell to a current client than to attract a new client. That’s why using a content strategy with this aim is a good step. This is because it keeps the client committed to your company.
You can use various types of post-sale content. An example can be exclusive newsletters for customers. This way you will offer new products or discounts in your virtual store.
Reduces the cost of customer acquisition
The CAC, or customer acquisition cost, is a metric that records the value in which companies invest in the marketing and sales areas to achieve a new customer.
To get a new client is cheap. The income created by them covers the expenses created up there and gives a profit. For that reason, the goal of any company is for its CAC to be as low as possible.
So why do we explain this?
In general, companies still maintain a large sales team focused on prospecting and inject money into paid media to get new customers.
These actions are successful in many moments, but they also result in a fairly high CAC. This is because, in terms of personnel and advertising, it does not discount them at all.
With a content marketing strategy, you can reduce CAC. For this, you must provide materials that can erase the customer’s doubts at the time of purchase.
At the same time, you must provide your sales team with e-books, webinars, and other content that can make this sales process easier.
Also, you can use content marketing to train your sales team, improve your lead conversion, and build authority in the marketplace, among other things.
Start a content marketing strategy
Content marketing is more than writing. The truth is, that is the smallest part. First, you need to define objectives, strategies, and metrics to test.
Planning is essential before creating content. This means the choice of topics, language, keywords, and more. It’s when you make clear the results you want to achieve with your strategy, the path you are going to chart to achieve your goals, and how you will measure your progress.
It’s very important to have a plan at the time of starting to create the content plan. We will tell you all the steps of the company’s content marketing strategy. We’ll start with the definition of the buyer persona.
Definition of objectives and KPIs
A clear aim helps the team perceive which metrics must be monitored and what actions they must take to improve results. Every strategy must go after a goal that brings real benefits to the business.
Here are some benefits of content marketing for your company that you can use as goals:
- Generate brand awareness.
- Increase engagement with the brand.
- Educate the market.
- Generate sales.
- Reduce cost per sale.
- Increase lifetime value.
These examples encompass a large part of the cases we see daily. So, test what results you need to achieve in the current moment of your business and what goals will help you get there faster.
Once you define your goal, the next step in planning your content marketing strategy is to define your KPIs, the key performance indicators. You must do this definition very well. This is because there are two types of people who do not know if their campaigns are performing well:
- Those that do not follow metrics enough.
- The ones that look at metrics too much.
And they both create the same problem.
In the first case, if you are not measuring any results, you are walking in blind. In the second case, accompanying any available metric is to have a huge amount of data, but no important information.
What is content marketing, Inevitably a good KPI should be:
- Essential for strategy
- Easy to understand
- A positive action
Defining the KPIs is the next step after choosing objectives. This is because they are directly related. Next, we are going to show you a goal and which KPIs can you use to reach success:
- Brand awareness: It’s the number of reactions on Facebook, followers on Twitter, views of videos on YouTube, and visits to the website.
- Engagement with the brand: They are those shared on social media, number of pages visited on the website, low rejection rate, or comments on posts.
- Market education: number of pages visited on the site, subscribers in your newsletter, and RSS feed subscribers.
- Lead generation: conversions in landing pages, contact base growth.
- Sales generation: number of sales, sales/leads.
- Cost per sale: time spent to make a sale, number of sales, CAC (customer acquisition cost).
- Lifetime-value: contract time of each client
Definition of the Buyer Persona
One of the pillars of content marketing is not to attract just anyone to the website. Of course, you want the right person, the one who does have the profile to become a customer.
Therefore, all planning must be based on the knowledge of the person. This to them in all their pains and lead them through the sales funnel.
The concept of a person is different from that of a target audience.
The target audience is based on the description of a demographic that you are trying to reach. On the other hand, the person is a semi-fictional description of your ideal customer.
Adaptation of content to the sales funnel
The sales funnel has been used for a long time by marketers. The reason is that it’s a simple way to illustrate the sales process. It shows the first contact with the public until the moment the sale is made.
In the same way that a funnel is capable of receiving a lot of volume at the top, but, in the end, it lets little matter through.
The sales funnel shows the big amount of people who come to you. However, only a number will go through the entire process and become a customer.
This image is important to find out where a potential customer is in the conversion. It also allows you to know what efforts are necessary to take them to the next step until they reach the purchase decision.
Usually, the sales process is done by the sales team. Content marketing can be used to make the process more efficient, and of course, shortening the sales cycle.
One of the bases of content marketing is to create relevant information. This has to be interesting to your audience to promote interactions and engagement with the brand. However, working with content marketing is a strategic job.
In the same way, if you want to use the content to optimize the sales process, you have to think about content that helps in the development of each of the stages of the funnel.
Definition of content distribution channels
Now that you have a well-structured persona and sales funnel, it’s time to choose which customer acquisition channels to invest in. That is, where you are going to distribute your content.
It is important to note that a good channel is one that the target audience uses. It is useless to publish content on Twitter if your target audience does not know that social media platform. Also, choose only the channels to which you can dedicate. It is preferable not to be on a channel than to have a bad presence, which only publishes once in a while and never creates a de facto relationship.
Having said that, we’ll let you know bellow the main acquisition channels that currently exist, their advantages, and some information:
According to Neil Patel, 82% of marketers who blog, see a positive ROI from their inbound marketing.
In general, the basis of a content marketing strategy offers a range of possibilities, both due to the variety of formats it supports and the options to convert leads and generate more business opportunities. However, the biggest benefit of the blog for a strategy is that all the traffic you get is yours. You are not subject to losing your entire audience to some traffic borrowed from another platform, such as on social media.
The simple act of blogging drives website traffic. The proof of this is that companies that publish blog posts receive around 3.7 times more visits per month.
What is content marketing, Social media
Social media benefit content marketing, since they disclose the brand, generate engagement with the audience, reproduce traffic for the blog, and opportunities for sales.
A Hubspot survey revealed that most companies spend a fifth of their budget on social media and that the trend is to increase in the next five years. That is why the demand for content on social media grows every year. Between 2014 and 2016, content consumption on Facebook increased by 57%, on Twitter, by 25%, and on LinkedIn, by 21%.
All large companies have a strong presence on social media.
The use of videos in a content marketing strategy is a powerful initiative to increase authority in the market and educate the public and is one that should grow even more in the coming years.
In 2019, 80% of Internet traffic were videos, according to a Cisco report.
One of the great advantages of video content is that it is easy to consume on various types of devices, such as cell phones, tablets, and more.
This format has a high perception of value by whoever watches, it is also cheaper and easier to do than it seems.
What is content marketing, Rich materials
Rich materials are pieces like e-books or templates, which have more valuable and informative content than a blog post.
Producing rich materials is a good way to show that your company is in authority on some matter.
And, that you have enough knowledge to talk about it in-depth and educate the market.
But, really the value of these materials is in the ability to generate leads and increase the contact base.
Interactive web pages
On the Internet, innovation is the main rule, which causes more sophisticated and qualified content formats to emerge from time to time for users. For now, the format that best fits this perspective is that of interactive content web pages.
These materials offer an original and captivating experience to people who browse a website since they can actively participate in the consumption of the content.
Whether in a questionnaire, calculator, infographic, or ebook, interactive web pages offer resources that the user can click to indicate their preferences. On the other hand, website administrators can understand the behavior indicated by interactions to deliver the exact information or offer that the user needs. Different versions of the same page can even be displayed depending on the user who interacts with it.
Some of the advantages of interactive web pages are:
- Longer time spent on the page.
- More brand mentions and backlinks.
- Valuable audience data, which can be used to build more accurate sales strategies.
- Conversion rates are 94% higher than static web pages, as this study by Ion Interactive and Demand Metric shows.
What is content marketing, E-mail
First of all, let’s clarify that email marketing did not die. On the contrary, although it is criticized by many people, e-mail is one of the channels with the highest ROI (return on investment) in a content marketing strategy.
It offers many advantages, such as predictability of reach and low cost, since it only takes one tool and one analyst to perform the downloads and it allows you to know exactly how many people received, opened, and clicked on your message.
Some companies have successful strategies using Slideshare presentations, webinars, and even offline formats, such as magazines or newspapers.
Therefore, it’s a good way to keep your clients informed about market news. Besides, it identifies which new channels can be useful to the company to have good results and not fall into the trap of shiny object syndrome.
Just because something is new and caught your eye doesn’t mean that it will be positive for your content strategy. Make sure your target audience is active, engaged, and can generate relevant content for that channel.
How to manage a content marketing strategy
At this point, it is essential not to lose sight of what was defined in the planning stage and maintain the frequency of generating and distributing content.
At the time of its execution, it must be open to small changes of the route towards the final objective.
It may seem complicated, but we will explain step by step how your strategy should be conducted, starting with content production.
What is content marketing, Content production
Production is the foundation of a content marketing strategy, where all planning takes shape.
Creating quality content is not easy and requires an investment of time, dedication, and work.
But, if some recommendations are followed, the process can become much less laborious.
Some of the factors that must be taken into account are:
Choice of keywords
Keywords are phrases that are used when conducting an Internet search. They are the main element when doing SEO (Search Engine Optimization). This is done to optimize the content and thus, have a good position in the search engines.
The ideal is to discover the prominent keywords for your business and invest in your production on this topic.
Remember that your text is directed to an audience and not to a search engine. Never harm the user experience in favor of Google.
What is content marketing, Size and format of the contents
The size and format of content must be modified from one site to another. But, the important thing is to give value to the reader.Some tips can help guide your production, for example: avoid very long and complicated texts or too short and empty of information.
A good size to start with is 500 words, it is suitable to answer the questions of your target audience and long enough to be benefited by Google, which tends to favor fuller texts.
Don’t forget to give importance to the format and keep your audience engaged. You can offer infographics, podcasts, and other different formats. Similarly, videos are a big trend and score SEO points when compared to competitors who don’t offer this type of content on their websites.
Working on the scan is preparing the text to be attractive at first glance. Before reading any content, everyone reads quickly, “scanning” to see what it is about and if it is worth continuing to read. Inter-titles, images, lists, and bold are excellent resources to increase the scanning of content, as they escape the pattern of continuous text.
These resources catch the eye and inform that these points are important and need to be read. Don’t forget to use short sentences and summary paragraphs. Large blocks of text affect the understanding of where a line of reflection begins and ends.
What is content marketing, Review
A text full of spelling mistakes can show how little you worked on it.
So please review all the content you produce, not only for errors but also to see if it conforms to standards.
It is best to wait a while after writing to revise, because if you do it right away, some errors may go unnoticed.
Search engine optimization (SEO)
Once your quality content is ready, don’t just publish it on the cover of the blog. You need to optimize it so that it is found by people. This is where SEO comes in, which is the optimization practices for search engines and one of the main strategies of the inbound method.
Search engines like Google and Bing use algorithms to classify all indexed content. It’s by using algorithms that search engines specify that article 1 is more important than 2. This is because the first article is placed on the first page when a person searches for a certain keyword.
What is content marketing? The more important the engines consider your content, the better your position on the results page will be.
It is critical to reaching your target audience, as according to a report by Internet Marketing Ninjas, 1st place earns 21% of clicks.
The same survey says that the second earns 10%, the third only 7% and that number is going down. So if you are not well positioned, it is as if you do not exist.
However, as the algorithms are logical, it is best to follow some principles to show search engines that your content is featured. The most important principle is the presence of the keyword throughout the text organically. It is not that the keyword is frantically repeated, but variations that adapt to the semantic flow of the content.
And not only in the text but also in the title, in the URL, or the meta-description. However, that is only the main factor.
There are others, which are divided into SEO On-page, which encompasses everything related to the content page, and SEO off-page, which are the external positioning factors of the website or blog.
How to monitor and measure the results of content marketing
Now that you know how to plan and execute, the next step is to learn how to measure the effectiveness of your actions. This part is delicate and requires a lot of attention in choosing the metrics to understand the results obtained.
The analysis of the results is one of the most important moments of the entire content marketing strategy.
By measuring you can discover what is working and what is not and, accordingly, make the necessary corrections that we discussed at the beginning of this guide.
The main advantage of digital marketing over other media is that you can monitor KPIs in real-time and change strategies quickly to avoid large losses. Besides, you can track all the steps of a visitor, know exactly how many business opportunities have been generated with content, which channels are generating more leads. With it, you can accurately calculate the return that the content marketing strategy is bringing to the company.
What is content marketing? Measurement frequency
Each metric has a perfect frequency of measurement. Some are daily, others weekly or biannual. To know the ideal frequency of monitoring, it is necessary to know each one perfectly and discover the ideal data collection time to achieve statistical notableness.
For example, checking the cost of customer acquisition (CAC) daily is unnecessary, since this number tends to be more stable and it takes many events to cause a relevant change.
But checking your site traffic this frequent can make sense, as a drop of just a few hours can have a huge impact on your entire sales funnel.
A good way to discover the ideal measurement frequency is by benchmarking with partner companies and market specialists. Try it!
What are the content marketing metrics?
ROI (Return on investment)
ROI is one of the most important metrics for any content marketing strategy and possibly the most beloved metric by bosses and directors. It is managed to measure the efficiency of an investment and is said through percentage.
To calculate the ROI of content marketing, you just need to take what was earned on an action, subtract what was spent, and then divide it, again, by what was spent. It is a very simple working measure that is used to give a general notion of the performance of any type of investment.
One of the biggest problems in calculating ROI is understanding the concept of “generated value”. This is because content marketing has different objectives, some long-term and difficult to measure directly. However, it is extremely useful, especially for more determined objectives.
Conclusion of What is content marketing?
Finally, we understand that content marketing goes beyond just writing and managing a website.
Content marketing involves developing strategies to generate customers who become loyal buyers.
So if you don’t know how to start, we, as an agency specialized in digital marketing, will help you with whatever you need.
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