Content is everywhere in the world. It's in magazines, on TV, and online all the time.
We have often heard the buzzwords around Content like 'Content is king' or 'Create quality content' and 'Content is everywhere, but we do not know how to deliver the right content to the right people.
When it comes to the role of Content in marketing, there are two schools of thought: Content Strategy and Content Marketing.
The terms are often used interchangeably, but they do not mean the same thing.
The truth is that they are fundamentally different approaches to online content creation. It's essential to understand how each approach benefits your business, so you can decide which one is right for you.
Why are you Creating Content?
Everything starts from here. As a part of the digital marketing funnel, content marketing plays a vital role in creating awareness about your brand, products, and services.
The fact is that content marketing has become an essential part of a digital marketing strategy because it helps to increase the reach of your business online.
Before telling you why content matters, here are few questions to ask:
(1) Why are you creating the content?
(2) What is the objective of creating high-quality content? Do you have any marketing goals to accomplish with content? Are you looking to highlight the selling points of your content?
(3) Do you want to sell the products and services? Or do you want to offer information about the products with your valuable content?
People use the internet for different purposes, such as researching, finding solutions, and making purchases. Content marketing helps drive traffic to your website and allows you to connect with potential customers.
It’s all about creating the right content that is relevant for your audience at this moment in time. You need to be aware of the trends and what your audience is looking for.
Content marketing helps to capture leads, convert them into customers, and increase revenue.
Content is one of the best mediums to reach your customers, address their pain points and prove the right solution to them.
Now, there are a number of reasons why would you want to create content for your business:
- To increase your brand awareness and to generate more leads.
- To build trust and loyalty in your customers by providing them with information about the products and services you offer.
- To engage your target audience with your business offerings through content marketing.
- To improve customer engagement, which can result in increased sales.
- For creating a community around your brand.
- To generate more organic traffic to your website.
That's why content is an essential part of your funnel.
Who will create your Content?
The simple answer is that- Content is usually created by the marketing team or the in-house content writers.
If you are a small business, you can outsource your content creation to a freelance writer, but if you have time and budget to do it yourself, it's best to start with hiring a skilled writer.
Depending on the competition, the budget and the target audience, and the content types, you need to decide if you want to hire a full-time writer, build an internal team, hire a freelancer, or work on your own.
For example, if you have some case studies to share, it would be great to create content yourself or a marketer who has worked on the product before.
Furthermore, it is also essential to create a piece of content that aligns with your business goals. So, the writers must have a knack for writing such content.
When will you create the Content?
When you are starting a project, most people think that they should plan to work on their project.
But most times, this is not important because it can be hard to know what will happen in the future with your new product or service.
Also, the content creation process has many stages.
It involves the selection of the right topic, research, brainstorming, and finally creating the content.
The content creation process is a long and arduous one that may take time to complete. Hence, it would help plan in advance to boost your content marketing efforts and create a smooth workflow.
Keep updated about your competitor's content marketing strategies and see how often they publish their content. You can use tools like Google Trends to check when is the right time to sell your products to the right audience.
Once done, create an editorial calendar with a list of all types of content you will be publishing. The content calendar might not play any significant role in content strategy, but it can help you be constant in your content marketing planning using this.
Now, you have got a clear understanding of the why, who, and when of content, it is essential to understand how to create a successful content marketing campaign.
What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing is the process of creating and distributing relevant content to your target audience to promote your business.
It involves all the steps from research, planning, writing, curating, and promoting the content. It helps you create a brand name for yourself as well as establish a relationship with your audience.
Content marketing is the aspect of your sales funnel. It helps strengthen the relationships with your customers and helps you build a lasting customer base.
Content marketing is one of the best ways to attract customers. It is a comprehensive process that involves developing content to attract new customers, retain existing customers and increase customer loyalty.
To be good at selling, you have to know your product. It would help if you also had lots of information about the buyer's environment and needs to do well in the sales process.
What are some examples of good Content Marketing?
Content marketing, like any other form of marketing, needs to be effective. If it isn’t, you’re wasting your time and money.
And, the first thing to know about is the type of content marketing efforts you can create. This ranges from written content to video, audio, and any other type of digital media.
This means that you can use your website, emails, or social media posts to promote your brand using the proper content marketing.
You need to know what type of content marketing will work best for your business.
Content marketing includes the content:
- Social media
- Case studies
- Blog posts
- Fun content
To provide good value to the user and the above types of content, you need to implement the right content strategy.
What is Content Strategy?
Content strategy is the foundation on which successful content marketing is built. It is not about writing content but rather about creating a great content experience for your customers.
The content strategy works as a roadmap for practical content marketing efforts.
Your game plan for driving traffic is basically what you'll do with the content on the blog or website so people can find the information they are looking for in it.
Content strategy answers various questions that help content marketers bring closer to understand the audience and market.
Why Content Strategy matters?
Brands with a content strategy tend to have a higher ROI and perform better than others. According to the Content marketing institute, 60% of the most successful B2B content marketers have a content strategy.
Your content strategy answers the questions like:
- Content Strategy answers ‘Why’ You’re Publishing Content
- It tells that what you are trying to accomplish?
- The metrics for defining the success.
- How to promote and put on the strategy to amplify your content.
In a nutshell, content strategy is going to give the right direction to your content marketing efforts.
How to keep your content on-brand?
Your content reflects your brand, so you need to keep it consistent with your brand identity.
To keep your content on-brand, you need to establish a clear hierarchy of different brands that work together.
For example, if you have a blog that features a product from a specific brand, you can’t have a post that features a competing product from the same brand.
This would be confusing for your readers and potentially lead to negative feedback. You also need to ensure that all contents are branded consistently so that it’s easy for your readers to identify the information as coming from your brand.
Hence, you would like cohesive content that s speaks for your brand, which requires a high level of planning and research.
Content Strategy vs Content Marketing
Content strategy and content marketing are two different strategies that help businesses communicate with their customers. While both strategies are similar, they differ in the way they're executed.
Content strategy focuses on the company's overall strategy, while content marketing focuses on the creation of content.
These two terms often overlap. A content strategist tries to create a strategy that guides and boosts your content marketing. However, the strategy is developed to guide your content marketing.
Does marketing without strategy would work?
It would, but that's not what a good content marketer would do.
Content strategy and content marketing overlap, and you need both of them to succeed. It would help if you had a clear strategy before laying out your content to your target audience.
Without a concise content strategy, the content on your site won't be explicit or helpful to your readers. In other words, it will be difficult for your readers to determine if they should buy the product or not.
The benefit of having a clear strategy is that it allows you to create a marketing plan that gives you more insights into buyer personas. The strategy must be a must-have to listen to the customer's voice and create content that meets their needs.
Similarly, content marketing generates leads, boosts organic traffic, and search engine rankings. It should also help you to engage with your customers and create a loyal fan base.
So, you see the difference and similarities between content strategy and content marketing. You would have also got an idea of what are the roles of content strategists and content marketers.
Writing usable and high-value content may take some time, a clear strategy, but it is worth the time, effort and money. Start by creating a content strategy and connect the dots to achieve your business goals with your content marketing campaigns.