Content marketing is by far the most efficient and economical way to market your brand in our time. Content successfully reaches targeted audiences all the way, instantly communicating value without seemingly expecting anything in return. Content marketing also plays the important role of building recall value with the consumer while simultaneously enhancing the visibility of your brand.
Content Marketing Deciphered
A marketing approach that creates and distributes content strategically. Consumers easily engage with brands that delivers relevant, valuable information interestingly. Content marketers identify, classify and deliver appropriate content to clearly defined audiences to drive business in the form of search engines,social media, blogs, video, creatives, podcasts.
How to Achieve Excellence in Content Marketing?
We are living through information overload and fatigue sets-in when you are presented with mediocre, not so interesting content. The trick is to provide value to the consumer by aligning your product/service with the intent of the consumer. It is important to always ask yourself, “How is the consumer going to benefit from the post?”
Content is successful when the piece is emotionalized, even if it is just an information article. By using targeted marketing, it is relatively easier to provide value and emotionalize with your consumer. For example, talking about fashion and how to be more fashionable may be valuable, and even connect emotionally, to a certain audience. However, the same article may not be as emotional or valuable to others. So, it is imperative to know who the content is being targeted to.
Goals of content marketing
This type of marketing can be added to the arsenal of a company to achieve virtually all of its marketing goals. These goals can differ from business to business, and understanding the goal of a business before shooting out content will help amplify results. These goals can be set according to the type of business you own, the target audience, geography of the business, etc.
Some of the key goals that content marketing can achieve are as follows:
- Brand awareness
- Lead generation
- Lead nurturing
- Customer retention
- Cross-selling and up-selling
- Channel marketing
- Customer experience enhancement
Types of media
There are essentially five types of media that can be used to promote content.
- Paid media – This is media platforms like TV, magazines, paid ads on social platforms, etc., where a monetary transaction has to take place to promote content.
- Owned media – This is media where you don’t necessarily need to make a monetary transaction to publish content. Posts going up on your website, blogs, etc., fall under this category. Even unpaid social media posts fall under this umbrella.
- Earned media – Basically PR, this refers to the exposure you receive from an external source such as media, influencers, bloggers.
- Shared media – Publicity you get by word of mouth, referrals, co-creation, etc., fall under this category.
- Converged media – This is simply a blend of one or more of the above mentioned media.
Content marketing is so much more than simply creating and sharing content to achieve your desired goals. Like all marketing, it requires a lot of strategizing. It must also be noted that content marketing strategy is different from content strategy. The former is the strategy used to attract audience to your brand, product, or service, while the latter is the strategy used to formulate the content. For example, figuring out how the content is found is content marketing strategy, while figuring out what goes into the content itself is content strategy.
Questions to be asked to optimize the strategy
- Who are the target audience and what are their needs?
- What marketing goals are looking to be fulfilled by using particular content?
- What is the data required to implement the strategy? (Competitor analysis, customer needs, etc.)
- What is the budget to implement such a strategy?
Steps to implement a robust strategy
- Analyze the type of content – Figuring out the type of content that needs to be put out to achieve a certain goal is the first step in building a good content marketing strategy.
- Building content – To avoid any obstacles or setbacks in the strategy, it is imperative to build the required inventory of content before beginning the campaign.
- Plan – Scheduling the content beforehand can also minimize setbacks.
- Build a narrative – Ensure that the consumer of the content understands the narrative of the content. In other words, maintain a consistency with the tone style, story, etc.
- Use various channels – Although not the most important item in the list, releasing the content on various channels can help optimize results.
- Diverse formats – With millions of users online, different people will resonate with different formats of content. Sticking to only written content will alienate consumers who enjoy watching a video over reading an article.
- Provide value – Generating content simply for the sake of creating it is a sure way to create a weak strategy. Ensuring the customer benefits from the content is a valuable asset to have.
- Close – It is easy to leave out this step simply because so much focus is spent on creating the content and strategy. It is of paramount importance to understand why the content is created, and an adequate amount of time must be spent on driving that customer towards that particular goal.
Calculating the Return on Investment (ROI)
Sometimes the ROI on particular campaign may not be a monetary return. ROI in the form of likes, shares, document views, subscriptions, etc., too are valuable. However, in this demonstration we will be focusing on calculating a monetary ROI.
Firstly, you need to calculate the total amount spent on the campaign (A). Let’s say A = Rs.25,000.
Then calculate how much the customer spent directly from the campaign (B). Let’s say B = Rs.2 lakh.
Calculate the profit margin of the product/service (C). Let’s say C = 20%.
The return from the campaign (D):
= B X C
= 2,00,000 X 20%
D = Rs.40,000
ROI = (D – A / A) X 100
ROI = (40,000 – 25,000/ 25,000) X 100
ROI = 60%
The competition is fierce and online space is cluttered with all manner of content vying for audience attention. Differentiating yourself from competition through unique selling points will set a brand apart in all the noise and clutter. Content marketing is both effective and economical tool to achieve marketing goals for businesses of all sizes. Establish good content marketing practices and watch your business grow.