Content marketing is gaining momentum at the moment, confirming the reputation of the most relevant and effective way to promote business on the Internet. Many experts in the West even call promotion with the help of content mainstream. Content marketing is also gaining popularity in Runet thanks to successful examples of project development using this approach.
According to a study of strategic plans for business projects for 2013 conducted by the MarketingProfs and Content Marketing Institute, 91% of B2B and 86% of B2C marketers are already using content marketing as a promotion tool (the research, naturally, concerns the foreign segment of the Internet). More than half of respondents will increase the cost of creating and publishing content in the next 12 months.
Remember, content marketing is not a magic pill, so using this method does not automatically guarantee success. Only consistent implementation of the right strategy brings business results. What are the characteristics of effective promotion approaches using content? What secrets help successful content marketers develop online projects?
This article will tell you about the five habits of real professionals in the field of content marketing. You will be able to stand out against the general background of specialists and businessmen, having adopted the acquired knowledge.
1. Learn to explain the essence of content marketing in the language of business.
Farsighted experts in the field of business promotion on the Internet have already understood the principles of work and evidence of the effectiveness of content marketing. However, even they can not always make the economic justification for the effectiveness of promotion with the help of content for customers or managers of their company.
As you understand, the size of the budget for the implementation of content marketing strategies depends on your ability to demonstrate the results of their implementation or to prove the possibility of achieving specific goals in the foreseeable future. Link the objectives of your marketing campaigns to the business goals of the client or organization in which you work, so that project owners and project managers understand what they are spending money on.
For example, a businessman aims to create a brand and make it recognizable. Content marketing in this case will involve the audience in interaction with the business and will provide potential customers with diverse information about the brand and its prospects.
Consumer loyalty is another measurable benefit that a business gets through content marketing. Your customers return to you again and again if you regularly provide them with useful and relevant information in the form of reviews, articles, Email-mailing.
2. Combine specialists of a different profile into a strong content marketing team.
You will not succeed in content marketing alone. Successful marketers create teams capable of implementing large-scale editorial plans (we already covered this topic here).
You will need the command to:
- Constantly create and publish large volumes of relevant relevant content. Involving the cooperation of qualified specialists from different fields, you get additional flexibility. It's about creating content of various types and topics. In this case, you save the main core of marketing campaigns - your content promotes projects, as it benefits potential and existing customers.
- Consult with specialists in different disciplines in order to maintain the relevance of content to the audience, as well as to choose effective channels for disseminating information. The interaction of copywriters, designers, SEO-optimizers, experts in the creation of video materials guarantees you an increase in the effectiveness of marketing campaigns.
3. Tell interesting stories.
This habit remains one of the main characteristics of successful professionals in the field of content marketing. Learn to intrigue the audience and stay interesting to potential customers.
Use some tricks of professional journalists who can turn their articles into trendy materials that make the weather in a particular area. These techniques include:
- Publication of articles that casually mention certain goods and services. Journalists avoid recommendations or direct advertising to create an impression of the author’s impartiality from the audience.
- Preservation of uniformity of style and compliance with the quality standards of publications. This increases the confidence of potential and existing customers in the content.
- Confirmation of information links to reputable sources. Journalists use this technique to increase the value of their own materials in the eyes of the audience.
And to create good news or an article, many journalists combine their work in five stages. Here they are:
- Search for ideas.
- Search for sources of information.
- Interviewing key actors and experts.
- Writing material.
- Publication of the article and receiving feedback.
Learn the basic principles of storytelling, they will also help you create exciting articles and reviews. One of these principles is the structuring of materials. For example, modern stories often consist of three blocks:
- Representations in which the author describes the actors, the relationship between them and the circumstances in which the action unfolds.
- Actions during which the heroes of history solve the problems that have arisen and acquire new knowledge and skills.
- Interchanges, during which the actors achieve their goals, get answers to all questions and acquire a new outlook on life.
This is just one of the ways to structure the material that you can use. Remember, having a structure makes your stories and reviews readable and dynamic.
Be sure to use graphics to make your content interesting to the audience. We have repeatedly written that graphic design and photography are important components of the presentation of texts (see here and here). Consider visual solutions as an effective way to influence the emotional sphere of your potential customers.
Learn other tricks from professional journalists and authors. They will help you manage your audience and get your readers to take action.
4. Change the environment
Content marketing can significantly change the approaches to doing business in your organization or in the company that has become your client. You and your colleagues need to learn how to provide consumers with useful and interesting information when promoting a business. This usually involves giving up on standard advertising that most buyers do not notice. Thus, you should know how to successfully and constructively change the situation in your company.
Pay attention to the business tale of John Cotter and Holger RatgeberOur iceberg is melting, or how to achieve results in the face of changes". It will help you make the necessary changes to help your business remain successful during periods of transformation.
Content marketing professionals should simultaneously provide the audience with relevant and useful information, as well as act as agents of change. In other words, content marketing should teach you to talk and write about what interests your customers (or will interest them in the near future), but not about what is profitable and interesting for your business.
Have you ever wondered what kind of product journalists produce? They create a huge amount of high-quality content that forces the audience to return again and again to the websites of news agencies in order to read the latest news or an exclusive interview.Using content marketing to promote your business, remember that customer-friendly information should be one of your products. This is true even if your company specializes in the production of steel structures. Can you imagine what tectonic changes should occur in order for a metal processing company to create its own editorial staff for working with content? But the most interesting thing to come is you will become the conductor of change if you want to effectively promote your business in the information age.
5. Constantly check and evaluate content.
Content marketers should clearly understand the role of each review, video or article in the overall business promotion strategy. For example, when publishing material on a specific topic, you should immediately think about official documents, research results and presentations that comprehensively cover the issues raised in the article. You can also use different types of content to expand your potential audience.
Regular content audit will help you identify the most successful and popular materials, as well as articles and reviews that need updating. In addition, checking and inventory will help you avoid the formation of "uninhabited islands of content." We are talking about materials that are not in demand from your customers, which is expressed, for example, in the absence of site page views, social actions, comments, etc. Audit will allow you to change and update unpopular content to make it relevant again.
Content marketing is both a science and an art. Specialists working in this field have the opportunity during the audit to instantly get a huge amount of information using marketing automation tools, search and social analytics services. It makes them look like scientists. However, only high-level experts are able to work with the received information and transform it into useful and interesting content for the audience. Are they not artists?
Learn to determine why your best materials have become popular with customers. Perhaps the whole thing in a slide show or videos that you used in a particular article? Or was the topic of the review so urgent that hundreds of people left comments within a few hours after publication? The more you know about your content, the easier it will be for you to create the materials your consumer needs.
What do you think, what other habits do successful content marketing professionals have? Share your thoughts.