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Content marketing is not a new phenomenon; it has been around since the 1880s “as technological advances in transportation and communications allowed companies to forge stronger connections with their customers.” Even back then, brands such as John Deer recognized an opportunity to build customer trust by providing them with information that met their interests and needs, rather than just advertising to them. In 1885, they launched a magazine with the goal of providing useful advice and information to farmers who wanted to increase their profitability.
What is Content Marketing?
According to the Content Marketing Institute, “content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.” Some examples of content marketing are magazines, blogs, podcasts, videos, and infographics that potential customers will value and that they can share across various platforms.
For content marketing to be effective, it needs to be strategic, which means that companies need to identify the goal they want to accomplish using this technique. For instance, if your goal is to increase awareness of your business, the content you produce and share will vary significantly from information aimed at helping a customer research products to help them make a decision.
Relevant, Valuable, and Consistent
Content needs to be valuable and relevant, but value and relevance are subjective. Haphazardly creating content without knowing the audience will not produce the results that you seek. For example, if you own a clothing company, your audience may be interested in the latest fashion trends, or they may be interested in knowing how to accessorize for various occasions.
Since many companies use content marketing as part of their digital marketing strategy, competition is fierce. One way to stand out is by ensuring that you produce and share high-quality information consistently. Maintaining a regular schedule will increase the credibility of your business as your prospects start viewing you as an industry leader and an expert.
Profitable Customer Action
Content marketing enables businesses to build a relationship with their audience, and when your potential clients trust you, they are more likely to buy from you or recommend your company to their family and friends.
Is content marketing an integral part of your marketing strategy? Tell us how content marketing has helped you achieve your business goals?