This is a question we get a lot — especially from small and midsize businesses savvy enough to know that if they’re going to take their operation to the next level with increased sales driven in part by a lead-generating network of contacts, they have to use content marketing to scale their outreach.
One of the most effective and affordable ways for any organization to be in more places at once with the right information delivered across a wide range of digital platforms to the right people at the right time? Yup, that would be content marketing.
Sure, the purposes of content marketing include being helpful, educating, informing — and even being entertaining. But there’s another big reason content marketing is so important: It encourages people to get to know you through the exchange of information that, lo and behold, you’ll find useful, too. For example, you might produce a practical guide and offer it for free download from your website to visitors who give you their email address and agree to subscribe to your email newsletter. Or you might produce sophisticated infographics about an important topic within your industry; brand them with your company’s name, logo and contact information; and invite people in your social media networks to contact you if they would like to use the graphics in their business presentations.
Content marketing isn’t just copywriting
It’s important not to confuse content marketing with copywriting — or “blogging” as people often mistakenly think of it. Sure, Media Salad can blog with the best of them, but our blogging is just one piece of the development and execution of thoughtful content marketing strategies that win our clients business. While copywriting typically is focused on driving sales through an immediate response to a call to action, content marketing is a multi-purpose effort to build and maintain business relationships. It:
- educates potential and current customers about your product or service
- positions a product or service
- disseminates information of general interest, relevant to your area of activity to help you and/or organization develop recognized authority within your industry
- fosters relationships with your customers by empowering them to master your product or service and share their knowledge with others.
How content marketing can be useful for your business
Your business produces and sells something, a service and/or product. The fastest way for people to find out about you would be to advertise. However, advertising is not necessarily the most cost-effective method to get your name out there. There are also these things to consider:
- What if the product is too new?
- What if you are not the only one that offers that product?
- What if your product requires special skills to use?
- What if your product is more expensive, or even the most expensive, in its category?