CONTENT MARKETING

What is Content Marketing?

Before we dive into the details of content marketing perhaps we should at least explain what ‘content’ is for anyone who is not aware of the term.

For our purposes, content is anything you publish online, text, images (photos, diagrams, drawings, infographics etc.), audio & videos. These can be published as blog posts, web page articles, tweets, Facebook posts, podcasts and so on.

Creating or finding the content for a site can be a daunting task. One of the first questions we ask when planning a website is whether you have the content. We can help you in gathering the information and writing the content if you require some help.

To explain Content Marketing let’s first start with a few definitions.

The Wikipedia defines Content Marketing as follows:

Content marketing is a form of marketing focused on creating, publishing, and distributing content for a targeted audience online.

Taken from: Wikipedia

Here’s another definition from ‘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.

Taken from: Content Marketing Institute

Summarising from these definitions, we can deduce that Content Marketing is about creating valuable, relevant content to attract a defined audience with the aim of converting them into leads and customers and ultimately into lifelong customers.

So determine who your target audience is and then write articles on questions they’re searching for.

The idea is not to talk directly about your products and services the whole time but to inform and educate the reader to increase their expertise level. This is in the belief that this will build trust as they realise your company’s value proposition and eventually reward you with their business and hopefully become life long customers.

Great content will also have the effect of driving traffic from the search engines which detect that visitors are spending time on the site and reward you with more visitors.

An Early Example

Content marketing isn’t new, let’s take just one example, In France in 1904 there were fewer than 3,000 cars on the road. In order to boost car sales, the Michelin tyre company published a guide to encourage motorists to take to the road.

The guides evolved to provide the following information:

  • Maps
  • Instructions for changing a tyre
  • Places to buy petrol
  • Recommended restaurants and hotels


They later used a star rating system for restaurants throughout the country. Those who were lucky enough to own or have access to a car now had another reason to travel.

The result was that car owners travelled further and more often, more cars were sold and Michelin achieved their intended outcome to sell more tyres.

You can read more about the guides here:
https://guide.michelin.com/gb/en/about-us

Conclusion

Here’s the main points about content marketing :

  • Provides valuable, relevant information
  • Attracts and retains a clearly defined audience
  • Builds trust and develops a relationship with your audience
  • Unlike some forms of advertising, content marketing is non interruptive, customers consume the information as and when they please.
  • Drives traffic from the search engines which detect that your visitors are spending more time browsing your website.
  • Allows potential customers to find and inform themselves of your products/services before they contact you.
  • On a website this information is available 24/7 with no additional cost of effort to your business.
  • It’s a marathon not a sprint.

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