Why Does Your Business Need a Content Marketing Strategy?
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Does your business need a content marketing strategy in 2022? The short answer: yes it does.
Content marketing is at the heart of any digital advertising campaign. Having a content strategy keeps your marketing efforts pointed in the right direction, helps you to comprehensively understand the buyer’s journey so your marketing team can create relevant content for every stage of the process, and contributes greatly to your success as a business overall.
And yes, content marketing deserves your attention. According to the Content Marketing Institute, 72% of businesses believe that content should be a “core business strategy.” At the same time, only about 37% of them have enough of a creative team on board to help with content creation. Investing in this aspect of digital marketing is the way to get ahead.
You’ll also be saving yourself money and driving up revenue simultaneously. Content marketing typically costs significantly less than traditional marketing solutions, even though it can triple the number of leads you gain.
Why exactly is a content marketing strategy important, and what kind of benefits can you expect if you decide to focus on it? This article will provide you with actionable tips backed by statistics so you can own this essential piece of the marketing puzzle.
The Biggest Reasons Why You Need an Effective Content Strategy
A content strategy goes far beyond simple blogs, topics, social media posts, and marketing assets. It revolves around how a business publishes and distributes consistent content for its target audience to bring in new customers and build trust with existing ones.
Digital content has garnered considerable attention in recent decades thanks to the proliferation of the Internet and its immense popularity. Creating content serves as the blueprint that guides your marketing, providing your teams with fresh ideas that solve customer problems, build awareness, boost conversions, and more.
Here’s why you need a winning content strategy into 2022.
Tap Into the People’s Need For Content
First off, it’s worth noting that digital content marketing matters for business growth because almost everyone today is gaining information over the Internet. Studies have shown that a staggering 86% of U.S. adults learn about the news on a computer, tablet, or smartphone. Comparatively, that figure is only 68% for television, 50% for radio, and 32% for print.
The truth of the matter is that today’s customers are spending more time-consuming content on the Internet than ever before, and that trend is unlikely to back down now. Think about how often you quickly Google something on your phone or scroll through your news feed on Facebook.
Your content strategy serves as an important foundational tool for information delivery, building awareness, and ensuring your customers can access whatever they need when they need it.
Build Brand Reputation
In today’s crowded markets, the reputation of a business is the deciding factor when customers have so many competitors to consider. Content marketing promotes trust in your brand among your target client base.
Why? When potential customers read your content, they will develop an opinion of your brand and its products and services. Writing engaging or useful content using industry-relevant topics will attract public interest. Who knows? Your company might end up a local industry leader in the market if you consistently publish high-quality, unique content.
Remember, your customers may not understand your product and services quite the way you do. Your content strategy is designed to ensure you provide valuable, purposeful content across all channels.
Boost Conversion Rates
Leads and potential clients are more likely to convert into paying customers when they are influenced by the content you publish. Those with extra knowledge to make more informed purchasing decisions are more likely to follow through with the orders.
To get the most out of this benefit, remember to include a call to action (CTA) in all your published content across all platforms. CTAs prompt readers on what to do next to initiate or complete a transaction. It’s essentially a stepping stone to the next step of the conversion process. CTAs can aim to accomplish various objectives:
Pushing a sale
Filling out a contact form
Encouraging contact with your sales team
CTAs work best when they are clear in what they intend for the customer to do. Remember that these elements go at the end of your articles. Readers are already “hooked” on your line, and all you have to do is reel them in.
Better Leverage Omnichannel Marketing Opportunities
Today’s companies must be visible across a variety of popular channels, from social to the web. Great content supports nearly every other aspect of the digital marketing strategy. For instance, you have:
Social media marketing through platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter
Online pay-per-click (PPC) ads
Sales presentations and trade shows
These options are only a few of the multiple channels to engage your audience with, and there’s certainly no rule against using all of them at a time. Content is ultimately a common denominator to all of these channels and thus acts as a way to unify your sales and marketing departments.
There’s a concept in marketing known as MarCom or marketing communication. It houses every message and post you make toward the market, and a content strategy is your entire MarCom.
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Leverage Multiple Types of Content
Unlike the newspapers and print ads of the past, the Internet enables a more multimedia-focused and interactive approach to marketing. The different types of content companies can use include, but are not limited to:
Blogs and articles
Presentations that include visual components
Courses and webinars
Social media posts
The intention of content can be anything from informing to entertaining. Either way, it’s designed to attract a curious prospect to your brand awareness and its offerings.
Your content marketing strategy will guide you on what assets to create, where to display them, and what channels to use to syndicate these assets.
Improve Your Search Engine Optimization
Studies have shown that the vast majority (over 90%!) of buying cycles begin with an online search, hence the immense interest in SEO tactics.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is on the minds of every web designer, and it’s the key to getting your website noticed in the vast ocean of Google search results (SERPs). A content marketing strategy is the best path to ideal SEO because it:
Ensures you publish new content consistently: An efficient content schedule prevents you from taking ill-advised breaks in publishing new posts. Search engines appreciate it when websites stay up-to-date, hence the presence of blogs on business websites.
Gives you more content in general: As long as you continue to develop and publish fresh content, your business website will have more pages for search engines to index. It also creates more opportunities to insert keywords so you can rank at the top of organic search results. The result is that a Google search for a specific keyword phrase is more likely to bring up at least one page from your site.
Builds online authority and expertise: The more content they have to read, the more time visitors will spend on the site in general. Search engines like Google consider the “dwell time” a positive indicator that there’s valuable content to recommend. And more articles covering a wide range of topics also increase your chances of generating backlinks.
You likely already have an SEO plan in place, so why not supplement it with a solid content marketing strategy that not only helps enhance your SEO efforts but also empowers your online presence as an organization?
Empower Every Level of the Marketing Funnel
Marketing specialists know all about the funnel. Optimizing the customer experience at every stage of the marketing funnel goes a long way to tweaking every part of your overall strategy. How does content contribute to each level?
Top of the funnel covers when prospective customers first find their pain points and needs and try to find solutions to those problems. Any type of educational information can help at this stage of the customer’s journey, such as a blog post or a quick article covering exactly what they are looking for.
Middle of the funnel occurs when these customers are looking through their options and are comparing products and services. Your content needs to help these people differentiate their options and decide on solutions.
Bottom of the funnel includes clients who have narrowed down exactly what business to interact with (hopefully yours!), and the conversion is only a step away. A content strategy can still contribute at this stage to make that final push, as clients at the bottom of the funnel rely on your content to guide them into ultimately making a final purchasing decision. The goal is to convince, build confidence, and close the deal.
Tailor your content strategy to the marketing funnel by deciding what exactly a customer would want at each stage of the buyer’s journey. Aiming your blogs and articles at each stage maximizes your chance of bringing someone through the buyer’s journey, which hopefully ends with a conversion with you.
Learn More About Your Target Customers
In the same vein as the marketing funnel, having a digital content plan also makes an organization learn more about its target customers. When you know how to write for someone, you understand that person more profoundly.
SEO teams use Google Analytics and other industry tools to collect data and analyze for ideal customer age, gender, income bracket, location, preferences, and more. The goal is to create a buyer persona which then can help your sales team to identify target buyers.
Differentiate Your Brand
Today’s busy market has tons of companies all vying for the same audience. So what can you do to make yourself stand out from the crowd of voices and instill a positive brand reputation? Content drives the “personality” a business exudes, and setting yourself apart from the rest can be done easily through the materials you publish. Brand differentiation matters especially to smaller organizations that can’t rely on widespread name recognition alone.
Say you’re a flooring company and you write a blog post detailing what types of floor laminate work best in certain circumstances. If a customer happens to be searching for that exact topic, they will likely notice your post, have their question answered instantly and consequently be more willing to work with your business as a result.
Content can also be a way to make your brand look like it has personality rather than a cold and corporate demeanor. A cupcake shop might try to be fun and energetic, while a financial services office should be serious and professional. It all depends on what you want potential clients to think of you.
Constant Improvement Over Time
You don’t just finish a content marketing plan and let it play out by itself. It’s a cyclical process that involves analyzing its performance and making tweaks accordingly over time. Thankfully, content performance is easy to track.
Build up a list of metrics and key performance indicators that you’d like to meet. Find out why certain strategies are working while others are not. While it may never be perfect, having an improvement-focused mindset is important to gaining new leads and generating conversions more efficiently.
Content Strategies Aren’t Optional Today
Digital marketing campaigns are more competitive than ever, which means you need an effective strategy that serves the interests of your business, its customers, and the industry in which you operate.
A robust content marketing strategy will give you the blueprint you need to build awareness, educate customers, and convince them to do business with you.
About the author
Brandon Klayman founded the award-winning marketing agency Conscious Commerce Corporation to provide clients with a 360° view of their business, brand, and industry. He brings 28+ years of experience in e-business and has delivered 150+ seminars and events on digital marketing. His professional awareness, solution expertise, and outcomes-based approach allow companies to leverage all of the digital channels available to them, resulting in more reach, engagement, and conversions. Brandon and his team of Partner Alliance Leaders (PALs) provide a personalized approach that starts with understanding your business, your digital marketing goals, and the steps needed to achieve success.