What is Content Marketing?

Anne Thomsen
Content Lead

What You Need to Know about Content marketing

Content is king, right? In today’s digital world, content marketing is raising in popularity, and traditional marketing is becoming less effective by the minute. More and more people are going online to get answers to their questions and/or problems. Brands compete on a daily basis for the attention from their target audience. With a growing amount of products and services in the market, it has become crucial for brands to stand out from the crowd. No attention or awareness around your brand means no sales in the end.

Brands need to communicate in an effective way. They must have a clear story as to WHY people should chose them instead of the rest. But this is easier said than done. So how do you do it?

This is where content marketing come into play.

Instead of continuously pitching your products or services content marketing provides the opportunity to offer truly relevant and useful content to your audience and potential customers. Content that helps them solve their problems and give answers to their questions.

What Is Content Marketing?

Content marketing is a strategic approach that revolves around the creation, publication and distribution of content to a clearly defined target audience. The goal? To bring new traffic (and therefore new customers) that drives profitable customer actions to your business.

But does content marketing actually work?

It does!

Why?

Content marketing is all about storytelling. For as long as we know, humans have told stories. Our attention will always go to those who tell great stories. Just think of some of the best speakers in the world. They constantly use storytelling in order to make their point clear and understandable to the audience. And good stories they stick!

By using content marketing, brands have the possibility to communicate their own story. This gives the opportunity to build strong and long-term relationships with their target audience.

Why Do it?

Regardless of what type of marketing tactics you use, content marketing should always be part of the process.

Content marketing is a great way to build brand awareness. Differing from traditional marketing, content marketing focuses on the awareness and consideration stage of the consumer journey. See it as a chance to inspire! The advantage? Relevant and insightful content that drives significant traffic to your site. Consistent inbound links that give you the possibility to expose them to a brand they might never knew existed.

In addition, the more content you create and share with your audience, the clearer it becomes that you are an authority in your field. As most people know, we trust experts and hire them to solve our problems. Brands can positioning themselves as the experts with the right content.

However, content marketing is not an overnight fix. It is rare to see results immediately. It can take several months before a new piece of content begin to gain traction in search results. If you want to attract new visitors or to add value for existing customers then it is important that you continuously create and distribute content. Talk to your target audience as often as possible.

How to Get Started

It is important to bear in mind that content should never be created for its own sake. Quality over quantity always! In addition, the content must support at least one core business or marketing goal. If you find that the piece of content you have created does not support those goals, chances are you will not benefit from investing time in producing it.

The 3 step plan

To get started with content marketing, you must first create a proper plan for what you exactly are going to do. Here are three essential tips to build upon your foundation:

  • Define your topic

You have to research! You must know the exact day-to-day struggles your target audience is experiencing. What do they need help with? What answers are they searching for? As such, you will be in a position where you know your audience so well that you can become their go-to brand for answers.

  • Define your unique position

Always make a competitive research. This will help you understand what you know, that no one else knows. What data or experience do you have that you can take advantage of? Most importantly, how can you stand out from the crowd?

  • Develop a promotion plan

Just to make clear, “publish and pray” does not work. In order to become successful with your content, you have to promote it. Create a content calendar , so you have a good overview of when and where to publish your content. Make sure it is front and center on your own site and shared through social channels. You can even ask partners to help get the word out about your content, or include influencers in your strategy.

Thus, you have to experiment with your content. It is risky to assume that you are creating successful content from the get go. Listen to the feedback you get from your audience. Experiment with new formats. Try new headlines. Create content with different lengths. Use images / videos. Most importantly, test each approach with your audience. Experiment your way into success with content marketing! However, make sure not to test it all at once, because then your learnings are less valuable, as you cannot tell which element was the successful one. Therefore, only test one thing at the time in order to gain valuable insights.